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San Francisco Noir 2: The Classics

Edited by:

Dashiell Hammett and William Vollmann are just two treats in this stellar sequel to the smash-hit original volume of San Francisco Noir, which captures the dark mythology of a world-class locale.

$19.95 $14.97

Available as an e-book for:

What people are saying…

Praise for the first San Francisco Noir anthology:

“This is one book that should come with a scrip for Valium. If you do not feel jumpy after reading San Francisco Noir, you did not read it.”
San Francisco Chronicle


Akashic Books continues its groundbreaking series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir. Each story is set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the city of the book.

Be sure to also check out San Francisco Noir.

Featuring stories by: Ambrose Bierce, Frank Norris, Mark Twain, Jack London, Dashiell Hammett, Fletcher Flora, Bill Pronzini, Joe Gores, Don Herron, Ernest J. Gaines, Marcia Muller, Oscar Peñaranda, Janet Dawson, Seth Morgan, Craig Clevenger, William T. Vollmann, and John Shirley.

From the introduction by Peter Maravelis:

San Francisco is a town made for noir. Long before Hammett’s muse seduced him with fog and mist to pen The Maltese Falcon, European explorers and Christian missionaries had already laid the groundwork for the genre. Just ask the Ohlone indigenous peoples. The city’s history is a shadowy one. It is founded upon the spilling of blood . . .

With the release of the first volume of San Francisco Noir, we brought together a team of seasoned writers to compose original works that gave the reader a sinister sense of the city. The success of that volume was encouraging and we have returned with a new task at hand: to present a collection of classic reprints, some hitherto buried by the passage of time, which depict a town riddled by inequity from its very beginnings . . .

We see San Francisco reflected in these tales. A city haunted by the specters of its past—a past that is quickly fleeting, leaving little trace as it disappears into oblivion. Perhaps the final vestiges of this town will someday be found in this handy little volume of pulp. Enjoy it while you can, before it, too, returns to dust.

Table of Contents


Part I: Barbarous Coast
“A Watcher By the Dead” by Ambrose Bierce (North Beach, 1889)
“The Third Circle” by Frank Norris (Chinatown, 1897)
“The Black Hole of San Francisco” by Mark Twain (Portsmouth Square, 1865)
“South of the Slot” by Jack London (South of Market, 1909)

Part II: Shadows in the Fog
“The Scorched Face” by Dashiell Hammett (Telegraph Hill, 1925)
“The Collector Comes After Payday” by Fletcher Flora (Lower Market Street, 1953)
“Souls Burning” by Bill Pronzini (Civic Center, 1991)
“The Second Coming” by Joe Gores (San Quentin, 1966)
“Knives in the Dark” by Don Herron (Nob Hill, 2002)

Part III: Isle of Broken Dreams
“Christ Walked Down Market Street” by Ernest J. Gaines (Market Street, 2005)
“Deceptions” by Marcia Muller (Golden Gate Bridge, 1987)
“The King Butcher of Bristol Bay” by Oscar Peñaranda (Manilatown, 2004)
“Invisible Time” by Janet Dawson (Union Square, 1998)

Part IV: Desolation Angels
“Street Court” by Seth Morgan (Outer Mission, 1990)
“The Numbers Game” by Craig Clevenger (The Sunset, 2009)
“The Woman Who Laughed” by William T. Vollmann (Tenderloin, 1989)
“Ash” by John Shirley (The Mission, 1991)

Book Details

  • Paperback: 300 pages
  • Published: 2/1/09
  • IBSN: 9781933354651
  • e-IBSN: 9781617752247


PETER MARAVELIS is a native San Franciscan with a life-long involvement in the art and literary scenes. He programs the events calendar at City Lights Bookstore and is editor of both San Francisco Noir and San Francisco Noir 2: The Classics. He’s been known to occasionally moonlight with private investigators.

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