In case you don't know, it is George Pelecanos and Dennis Lehane that I credit with my passion and love of crime fiction. I read Lehane's Mystic River purely as a lark, mainly because of his interview on NPR back in 2001. Having read that book, I started reading of another author, Pelecanos, who wrote similar type of books. These books are crime stories, yes, but they are so much more. The are literature with a capital L.
The year 2008 brings us new novels by both men. And the first is Pelecanos's The Turnaround. And today, in the Washington Post's Sunday Magazine comes this in-depth article and interview. I cannot recommend Pelecanos high enough. While I have not read everything yet, my favorites are Hard Revolution and Drama City. I suggest you read the Derek Strange PI-Trilogy first (Right as Rain, Hell to Pay, Soul Circus) before you read Hard Revolution as it speaks to Strange's character and personal history. And, if you're into audiobooks, get Hard Revolution in audio. "The Wire's" Lance Reddick reads the book. Drama City is a nice stand-alone novel about an ex-con and his female parole officer that goes not where you'd expect it to go.
Anyway, if you have never read George Pelecanos, find a bookstore and start. Today. You will be enriched, entertained, and enthralled.