Plainview by Dave Hoing: award-winning story based on 3 Iowa Cold Cases

Iowa author Dave Hoing‘s two-part short story, “Plainview,” a literary piece loosely based on the real-life unsolved murders of three girls in and near Waverly in the 1970s, has been reprinted in The Interrogator and Other Criminally Good Fiction along with heavyweights of the genre such as Joyce Carrol Oates, David Morrell, Michael Connelly, Lee Child, and even Mickey Spillane. “Unsurprisingly, there’s not a dud in the bunch,”Publishers Weekly says of  this strong anthology of 26 crime stories.  “Plainview” was originally published in December 2010 in the British magazine Crimewave 11: Ghosts 11/12/2012 (now available as an ebook if you click here):

 Crimewave Eleven: Ghosts   Edited by Andy Cox      Cover Artist: Ben Baldwin

Novelist Ed Gorman “had to stop after reading the first story, Plainview by David Hoing. I stopped reading because the story is so good, so rich, so lyrically told reading anything else for the night would have been a waste of time. When I went to the back for the author bios I found that Hoing lives in Waterloo, about seventy miles from Cedar Rapids. I just got off the phone with him. I’m sure I sounded like a fan boy.. He’s done quite a bit of science fiction, he told me, but this was his first attempt at mystery. What can I tell you? His story is so good I almost decided to quit writing. What’s the point? THIS IS HIS FIRST MYSTERY STORY!!!!!!!!!”


Valerie Klossowsky (top), Julie Benning, and Lisa Peak (center right). Grid by AdS

Case of the Month: Lisa Peak – Julie Benning – Valerie Klossowsky is a guest post written for DCC by Jody Ewing, the blogger behind Iowa Cold Cases.

Dave emailed me: “Originally Roger Hileman (who attended Wartburg College around the same time as Lisa Peak) and I were going to write it together, but I kind of took off with it and finished before he could write anything. However, later he did write something.  The two parts of my story were set in 1975 and 2009.  Roger wrote a part set in 1991.  But then his computer crashed and he thought he lost it.  Happily, it turns out he’d saved it to a flash drive, so he just recently found the missing middle of the story.”


Plainview Part One: The Shoe Store by Dave Hoing

Friday, November 28, 1975
• The owner of the shop, a local eccentric named Kohlsrud, had liver spots on his hands and nicotine stains on his fingernails. He held the shoehorn in his right hand and cupped it over Leslie’s lower calf before slowly sliding the metal down to her heel. His wrist brushed against the smooth and supple contours of her leg. As he guided her foot into the loafer she noticed several scabs on the top of his head. What little hair he had was wiry and longish and white.

Plainview Part Two: The Blood Cools by Dave Hoing

Friday, July 3, 2009
• Mike Alexander and his wife Beth joined in singing hymn number 474 from the old green Book of Worship as the Frischel girls followed the casket of their mother up the aisle and out of the church. The girls were hardly girls anymore – Lindsey, the youngest, must be nearing forty by now – but Saint Andrew’s Lutheran Church hadn’t changed a whit since Mike left town in 1976. In fact, the pew in front of him still bore the marks he’d carved into the wood on his last visit, the now immortalized initials of his special girlfriends at the time, VK72 + LF75 + ML76. Thirty-three years later, no one had replaced the pews, no one had sanded the old wood, and no one, as far as he knew, had taken much notice of his handiwork. All somebody had done was to apply layer after layer of varnish until the etchings were smooth and shallow indentations, barely visible except to those who knew where to look and what to look for.

Review by Gayle Surrette

…All the stories have a darkness to them. The characters are somehow lost and looking for an anchor — be it a mystery to be solved, a ghost to be exorcised, or a monster to be faced. We all carry our ghosts of things done and not done and these stories pull on those feelings, raising the hairs on the back of your neck — or at the very least causing you to keep the lights on while you read and after you finish the story.

The issue opens with “Plainview. Part One: The Shoe Store” by Dave Hoing. It’s the days leading up to Christmas, beginning with November 28th, 1975. The story is told as journal entries kept by an unknown writer. Leslie stops in at Kohlsrud’s shoe store and bicycle repair store and then she disappears. Kidnapped. Run away. Killed. Most of the story endings are ambiguous, letting the reader determine just what they believe the ending should be based on their reading of the stories.

There’s a real darkness to some of these stories, even when no violence occurs on the page. I found it difficult to read through more than one at a time. Even when the tone was lighter, there was still a feeling of depression left from the overall mood of the story and it took a while to shake it off. This is a magazine to be read with breaks between each story to allow time to ponder them.

As to the ghosts, some of the ghosts are those of regret and memory while some may actually be ghosts seeking revenge, redemption, retribution, or absolution. It’s up to the reader to decide just how each story relates to the issue’s theme. Keep the lights and read through the stories for each is a gem of tight writing and will pull you into a world you’ll pray you’ll never enter in any other way but via fiction.

TTA Press Magazine  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780955368349
Date: 31 December 2010

Links: Crimewave / Biweekly Podcasts / Pub Info / Table of Contents /ShareThis


Ed here: This is an outright plug for one of the most interesting and innovative small publishers in the world. TTA Publications. Black Static is horror-oriented with cutting edge fiction and numerous columns, most notably by the always enlightening Christopher Fowler. One dazzling issue after another.

Crimewave is one of the most consistently rule-breaking collections of crime fiction being published anywhere … Get to know your local TTA Publications dealer. They’ve got the real stuff.  

Cover Art:
The evocative wraparound cover art is by Ben Baldwin.

November 20, 2014
About the Book:
Full of nail-biting suspense, jaw-dropping action, and even some heart-wrenching emotional drama, The Interrogator and Other Criminally Good Fiction is just that… criminally good! Table of Contents:
“Introduction” by Jon L. Breen
“The Interrogator” by David Morrell
“The List” by Loren D. Estleman
“The Scent of Lilacs” by Doug Allyn
“Section 7 (A) Operational” by Lee Child
“The Lamb Was Sure to Go” by Gar Anthony Haywood
“Luck” by T. Jefferson Parker
“The Story of the Stabbing” by Joyce Carol Oates
“Trade Secret” by Bill Pronzini
“The Plot” by Jeffery Deaver
“The Vengeance of Kali” by David Dean
“Sometimes You Can’t Retire” by Marcia Muller
“Clutter” by Martin Edwards
“Grave Matter” by Max Allan Collins & Mickey Spillane
“Escape from Wolfkill” by Clark Howard
“The Performer” by Gary Phillips
“Loon Life” by Brendan Du Bois
“Winning Ticket” by Christine Matthews
“The Movie Game” by Dick Lochte
“Sleep, Creep, Leap” by Patricia Abbot
“The Girl in the Golden Gown” by Robert S. Levinson
“What People Leave Behind” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
“The Return of Inspiration” by Tom Piccirilli
“Archie’s Been Framed” by Dave Zeltserman
“The Perfect Triangle” by Michael Connelly
“Old Men and Old Boards” by Don Winslow
“Plainview” by David Hoing
November 18, 2010

Crimewave is an approximately biennial collection of crime and mystery stories edited by Andy Cox and published by TTA Press. It takes a unique approach to the genre and contains the kind of crime and mystery fiction you just don’t find anywhere else. It picks up nothing but rave reviews. Ian Rankin calls it “A must-have collection of the hottest crime stories around.” Some of its stories have won prestigious awards such as the CWA Dagger and many of them have earned reprints in Year’s Best anthologies of various genres.

This Eleventh in the series has 14 stories including Nina Allan’s first ever crime story. Quoting reviewer Gayle Surrette’s verdict in Gumshoe “… read through the stories for each is a gem of tight writing and will pull you into a world you’ll pray you’ll never enter in any other way but via fiction.”

Crimewave 11: Ghosts:
Plainview Part One: The Shoe Store by Dave Hoing
Wilkolak by Nina Allan
The Conspirators by Christopher Fowler
Who’s Gonna Miss You When You’re Gone? by Mikal Trimm
Holderhaven by Richard Butner
Eleven Eleven by Cheryl Wood Ruggiero
Where the Bodies Are by Ilsa J. Bick
Neighborhood Watch by Cody Goodfellow
K Love by O’Neil De Noux
Living Arrangement by Steve Rasnic Tem
4am, When the Walls are Thinnest by Alison J. Littlewood
The Hostess by Joel Lane
We Are Two Lions by Luke Sholer
Plainview Part Two: The Blood Cools by Dave Hoing

NOTE: Dave and Roger co-authored the novel Hammon Falls set in Iowa 1893-2009      

About carolkean

novelist, reviewer, editor, book critic for Liberty Island and Perihelion Science Fiction; native prairie/guerilla gardener; champion of liberty, indie authors & underdogs; one of the top two reviewers in Editors &Preditors Poll 2015; Amazon Vine, NetGalley Top Reviewer
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