Akashic Noir

Since 2004 Akashic Press have published anthologies of noir short stories, each collection set in a particular city. The first installments focused on US cities but the range quickly expanded to feature cities around the world, edited by writers from that community with many stories being commissioned specially for the range, as well as some anthologies of classic stories.

As you will see below, I have only written about a very small fraction of the range. Of these collections I found Kingston Noir and Prague Noir to be the most satisfying and diverse in style but in each collection I have found at least a few stories that I found worth the read.

Kingston Noir (2012)

Edited by Colin Channer

Stories by Kwame Dawes, Kei Miller, Patricia Powell, Ian Thomson, Marlon James, Leone Ross, Marcia Douglas, Thomas Glave, Christopher John Farley, Chris Abami and Colin Channer.

[T]he quality of the writing is superb and I was impressed with the diversity of voices and the richness of the themes that this group of writers develop.

Read the review here

Manila Noir (2013)

Edited by Jessica Hagedorn

Stories by Lysley Tenorio, Rosario Cruz-Lucero, Lourd de Veyra, Sabina Murphy, Angelo R. Lacuesta, Budjette Tan & Kajo Baldisimo, F. H. Batacan, Jose Dalisay, R. Zamora Linmark, Gina Apostol, Jessica Hagedorn, Marianne Villanueva, Eric Gamalinda and Jonas Vitman.

A very solid collection of short stories, almost all of which worked for me on some level.

Read the review here

Marrakech Noir (2018)

Edited by Yassin Adnan

Stories by Fouad Laroui, Allal Bourqia, Abdelkader Benali, Mohamed Zouhair, Mohamed Achaari, Hanane Derkaoui, Fatiha Morchid, Mahi Binebine, Mohamed Nedali, Halima Zine El Abidine, My Seddik Rabbaj, Yassin Adnan, Karima Nadir, Taha Adnan and Lahcen Bakour.

[W]hile this collection is not perfect I think it brings the city of Marrakech to life and helps to capture something of the spirit of the city.

Read the review here

Moscow Noir (2010)

Edited by Natalia Smirnova & Julia Goumen

Stories by Anna Starobinets, Vyacheslav Kuritsyn, Ludmilla Petrushevskaya, Andrei Khusnutdinov, Alexander Anuchkin, Vladimir Tuchkov, Igor Zotov, Gleb Shulpyakov, Maxim Maximov, Irina Denezhikina, Sergei Samsonov, Dmitry Kosyrev, Alexei Evdokimov and Sergei Kuznetsov.

The tone of some stories is more grim and depressing than it is cynical or mysterious.

Read the review here

Prague Noir (2016)

Edited by Pavel Mandys

Stories by Martin Goffa, Štěpán Kopřiva, Miloš Urban, Jiří W. Procházka, Chaim Cigan, Ondřej Neff, Petr Stančík, Kateřina Tučková, Markéta Pilátová, Michal Sýkora, Michaela Klevisová, Petra Soukupová, Irena Hejdová and Petr Šabach.

I would pick out Amateurs, The Magical Amulet, All the Old Disguises and Olda No. 3 as my favorites from each of their respective sections.

Read the review here

Sydney Noir (2018)

Edited by John Dale

Stories by Kirsten Tranter, Mandy Sayer, John Dale, Eleanor Limprecht, Mark Dapin, Leigh Redhead, Julie Koh, Peter Polites, Robert Drewe, Tom Gilling, Gabrielle Lord, Philip McLaren, P. M. Newton and Peter Doyle.

[The] consistency in quality though is matched by a consistency of theme so this may work better as a collection you dip into rather than the sort you devour in a single sitting.

Read the review here

Venice Noir (2012)

Edited by Maxim Jakubowski

Stories by Peter James, Emily St. John Mandel, Barbara Baraldi, Mike Hodges, Mary Hoffman, Maria Tronca, Matteo Righetto, Tony Cartano, Francesco Ferracin, Isabella Santacroce, Michelle Lovric, Francesca Mazzucato, Maxim Jakubowski, and Michael Gregorio.

The balance of styles, between the humorous and the more serious, is very good. While the stories are grouped together along common themes I never felt that it was repeating itself as I have occasionally with some of the other entries in this series.

Read the review here