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Jim Fusilli


Jim Fusilli

Jim Fusilli is the author of nine novels, including THE MAYOR OF POLK STREET and its predecessor NARROWS GATE, which George Pelecanos called “equal parts Ellroy, Puzo and Scorsese” and Mystery Scene magazine said “must be ranked among the half-dozen most memorable novels about the Mob.” The NARROWS GATE setting is based loosely on Hoboken, New Jersey, where Jim was born.  

Jim’s debut novel, CLOSING TIME, was the last work of fiction set in New York City published prior to the 9/11 attacks. The following year, his A WELL-KNOWN SECRET addressed the impact of 9/11 on the residents of lower Manhattan.

Subsequent novels include TRIBECA BLUES and HARD, HARD CITY which Mystery Ink magazine named its 2014 Novel of the Year. CLOSING TIME, A WELL-KNOWN SECRET and TRIBECA BLUES were reissued by Open Road Media in October 2018. Lawrence Block provided a new foreword for CLOSING TIME.

Jim has published many short stories that have appeared in a variety of magazines, as well as anthologies edited by Lee Child, Dennis Lehane, Laura Lippman and other masters of the mystery genre. He edited and contributed to the anthologies THE CHOPIN MANUSCRIPT and THE COPPER BRACELET. His “Chellini’s Solution” was included in an edition of the Best American Mystery Stories and his “Digby, Attorney at Law” was nominated for the Edgar and Macavity awards. The novel NARROWS GATE was nominated for a Macavity in the Best Historical Fiction category.

The former Rock & Pop Critic of The Wall Street Journal and occasional contributor to National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered,” Jim is the author of two books of nonfiction, both related to popular music. PET SOUNDS is his tribute to Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys’ classic album. It was translated for a Japanese language edition by Haruki Murakami.

Combining his interests, Jim edited and contributed a chapter to CRIME + MUSIC: 20 Stories of Music-Themed Noir, published in 2017.

His novel for young adults, MARLEY Z AND THE BLOODSTAINED VIOLIN, was published by Dutton Juvenile.

Jim is married to the former Diane Holuk, a global communications executive. They currently reside in Washington, D.C., where Jim is at work on a novel set during the Truman administration.

Jim Fusilli

Books by Jim Fusilli

by Jim Fusilli - Fiction, Suspense, Thriller

In mid-1970s Jersey City, young Mickey Wright is thrust into a world controlled by a powerful Teamster local associated with the Genovese crime syndicate. The man who puts him in jeopardy is his father, a free-wheeling policeman well-known to Jersey City's politicians and drug dealers. When a Black trucker is murdered, Mickey is forced to choose between loyalty to family and the Teamsters or to values he shares with Debbie Olsen, the love of his young life who is the daughter of a solidly middle-class family. Memorable appearances by Mickey's sister, who is broken by her father's foul will, and memories of their late mother haunt the story. The question of whether Mickey can stand tall, break free and live a worthy life of his choosing isn't answered until a final, shocking confrontation.

edited by Jim Fusilli - Anthology, Fiction, Mystery, Noir, Short Stories

CRIME PLUS MUSIC collects 20 darkly intense, music-related noir stories by world-renowned mystery authors Brendan DuBois, Alison Gaylin, Craig Johnson, David Liss, Val McDermid, Gary Phillips, Peter Robinson, and, from the music world, Galadrielle Allman, author of PLEASE BE WITH ME: A Song for My Father, Duane Allman and award-winning songwriter-novelist Willy Vlautin. Edited by novelist and Wall Street Journal rock and pop music critic Jim Fusilli, CRIME PLUS MUSIC exposes the nasty side of the world of popular music, revealing it to be the perfect setting for noir.

by Jim Fusilli - Fiction, Suspense, Thriller

Following the brutal murder of his wife, a man finds himself swept into a world of violence and danger. Freed by an unexpected savior, he is still a haunted man who remains the target of his estranged daughter’s scorn. But as he succumbs to sordid temptation and is accused of murder, he must find the real killer to clear himself. He is unaware, though, that his nemesis, a Wall Street power broker, has unleashed a killer on his trail --- and the trail of his daughter.

by Jim Fusilli - Fiction, Suspense, Thriller

For years the drifter haunted the background of American life, roaming the side streets and highways that crisscross this vast country. That all changes when he witnesses a brutal assault on a young woman. By the time he reaches her, the assailant is gone, leaving a trail that is all too easy to follow. But playing the good Samaritan may be more trouble than it’s worth, when his moment of conscience hurls him into a shadowy world of violence, intrigue and deception.

by Jim Fusilli - Fiction, Historical Fiction

Jim Fusilli's new novel takes place in the dangerous immigrant neighborhood of Narrows Gate, overlooking the Hudson River. A young neighborhood boy named Sal Benno is pulled into the Mafia, and a complex web of secrets and crime gradually unfolds.