Genre Guide – Modern Noir & Crime Fiction

If you like your prose tough, your verbs punchy, your settings seedy and darkly lit, your plots twisty and unpredictable, and your protagonists utterly, irrevocably doomed, you’re probably a fan of (Neo-)Noir and Crime Fiction. These are some titles you won’t want to miss.

You can sign up for a free library card here 

If you are new to our eResources, check out these tutorial videos on how to get started.     

If you’re looking for more book suggestions, we’re happy to recommend them to you! Use this Book Recommendation form to send us some information about what you like to read and we’ll curate a list just for you.    

If you have any additional questions, you can contact a librarian through FacebookInstagram or XYou can also call us at 412-622-3114 or email us at 

The Devil Takes You Home

Driven by desperation, amid financial ruin and following a failed marriage, Mario, embraces the role of a hitman. After a life-altering tragedy pushes him to accept a near-suicidal assignment, he discovers the path to reward or ruin is a twisted and enigmatic journey. Traversing the relentless Texan landscape, Mario must confront nightmarish encounters and expose hidden motives, forever altering his destiny. You can also check out this title as eBook on Overdrive/Libby.

Notes on an Execution

Centered on serial killer Ansel Packer and the women in his life, this crime novel contemplates alternate paths and the fates of his potential victims while challenging the exploitation of women’s suffering in crime stories. The beauty of this book shines when the protagonist’s ego begins to crumble beneath the uncompromising weight of reality. You can also check out this title as eBook or eAudio on Overdrive/Libby or as eBook or eAudio on Hoopla.

My Darkest Prayer

Recently reissued, this novel is Southern Noir master S.A. Cosby’s gritty debut. Attempting to solve and avenge the murder of a local minister, ex-Marine Nathan Waymaker descends into the deeply corrupt Queens County, Virginia underground. You can also check out this title as eBook or eAudio on Overdrive/Libby.

Velvet Was the Night

Silvia Moreno-Garcia is one of the most exciting and versatile voices in modern fiction. Here she sets her sights on 1970s Mexico. A daydreaming secretary entranced by dime-store comics finds herself caught up in a hidden world of young radicals after investigating the disappearance of her friend and neighbor. You can also check out this title as eBook or as eAudio on OverDrive/Libby.

The Rope Artist

While investigating a murder linked to Japan’s underground BDSM scene, rookie cop Togashi finds himself drawn in by his own private desires. 

Bang Bang Bodhisattva

A transgressive, queer cyberpunk detective story, this debut novel by trans New Zealand author Aubrey Wood promises to be a wild, cerebral ride through the “worst cyberpunk future” that too closely resembles our own modern world. 

The Passenger

One of the last two novels that one of the greatest American authors of all time, Cormac McCarthy, published before his death was this ambling, subtly mysterious existential noir-of-sorts. You can also check out this title as eBook or eAudio on Overdrive/Libby.

White Horse

Erika T. Wurth’s novel is described as “a gritty, vibrant debut novel about an Indigenous woman who must face her past when she discovers a bracelet haunted by her mother’s spirit.” Part horror, part noir, altogether a thrilling read. You can also check out this title as eBook or eAudio on Overdrive/Libby or as eBook or eAudio on Hoopla.

Night Film

An investigative reporter can’t get over his hunch about an underground director’s misdeeds even though it’s already cost him his job and reputation, and finds himself back on the trail after the director’s daughter appears to the novel’s hero the night before her alleged suicide. You can also check out this title as eBook or eAudio on Overdrive/Libby.