Reverse-Gentrification of the Literary World

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Denver Noir

Edited by:

Denver enters the Noir Series arena with a wide range of mile-high misgivings and perils.

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Forthcoming: 5/3/22

$16.95 $12.71

What people are saying…

“Noir in the mile high city! Just like Denver’s housing market, the city’s crime-writing scene appears to be blowing up, and these stories function as a fascinating guide to the trials and tribulations of a rapidly changing city.”
CrimeReads, a Most Anticipated Crime Fiction Book of 2022


Akashic Books continues its award-winning series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir. Each book comprises all new stories, each one set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the respective city.

Brand-new stories by: Peter Heller, Barbara Nickless, Cynthia Swanson, Mario Acevedo, Francelia Belton, R. Alan Brooks, D.L. Cordero, Amy Drayer, Twanna LaTrice Hill, Manuel Ramos, Mark Stevens, Mathangi Subramanian, David Heska Wanbli Weiden, and Erika T. Wurth.

From the introduction by Cynthia Swanson:

“Even a city that boasts three hundred days of sunshine a year has its sudden, often violent storms—and writers have long taken advantage of that metaphor. Renowned authors Katherine Anne Porter, Jack Kerouac, Stephen King, Rex Burns, Robert Greer, Michael Connelly, and Kali Fajardo-Anstine—among many others—have brilliantly portrayed this picturesque but often merciless city. Today, Denver is home to a thriving literary scene, with writers of all stripes finding inspiration in its people and streets. The authors and stories featured in Denver Noir are no exception . . .

Editing Denver Noir, working with this talented group of writers, has been one of the highlights of my career. Fans of noir and Denver devotees alike, I invite you into this journey of our Mile High City, our home beside the mountains, our capital of sunshine and darkness, optimism and anguish.”

Table of Contents


Part I: The Longest, Wickedest Street
“Colfax and Havana” by David Heska Wanbli Weiden (Aurora)
“A Life of Little Consequence” by Twanna LaTrice Hill (Capitol Hill)
“Pieces of Everyone, Everywhere” by Cynthia Swanson (Cheesman Park)
“Tough Girls” by Erika T. Wurth (Lakewood)

Part II: 5,280′
“The Lake” by Peter Heller (Sloan’s Lake)
“A Baker’s Duckling” by R. Alan Brooks (Baker)
“No Gods” by Amy Drayer (South Broadway)
“Junk Feed” by Mark Stevens (Glendale)
“Northside Nocturne” by Manuel Ramos (Northside)

Part III: Things to Do in Denver When You’re Young
“Ways of Escape” by Barbara Nickless (Union Station)
“Sangre” by D.L. Cordero (Auraria)
“Dreaming of Ella” by Francelia Belton (Five Points)
“On Grasmere Lake” by Mathangi Subramanian (Washington Park)
“El Armero” by Mario Acevedo (Globeville)

Book Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Published: 5/3/22
  • IBSN: 9781636140292
  • e-IBSN: 9781636140353
  • Hardcover
  • IBSN: 9781636140346


CYNTHIA SWANSON writes literary suspense, often using historical settings. Her debut novel, The Bookseller, was a New York Times best seller, an Indie Next selection, and the winner of the 2016 WILLA Literary Award for Historical Fiction. Swanson’s second novel, the USA Today best seller The Glass Forest, was noted in Forbes as being one of “Five Novels with a Remarkably Strong Sense of Place.” She lives with her family in Denver. Find her at She is the editor of Denver Noir.

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