Dark and, at times, amusing fiction from award-winning author Dave Zeltserman

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

More Julius Katz and Archie On sale now!


"The puzzles are clever, and Zeltserman plays fair with readers. Stout devotees will be delighted with this loving homage." Publishers Weekly (starred review)

On sale now for $2.99!

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Jury Box review of Detectives and Spies


In the March/April issue of Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, Steven Steinbock offers the following review of Detectives and Spies in his Jury Box column: Zeltserman, who has garnered multiple EQMM Readers Awards as well as the Derringer and Shamus awards, has brought together nine stories, the first four featuring an artificial-intelligence device called Archie Smith, followed by three stories about former L.A. cop Morris Brick and two hardboiled crime stories featuring Hell’s only private eye, Mike Stone. Most of the stories first appeared in EQMM or in its sister publication Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine. My favorites are the stories about Archie, especially relevant with AI constantly in the news. Archie, a “highly-sophisticated neuron network,” serves as Watson to private eye Julius Katz in the first two stories, then is passed on to Katz’s sister, international spy Julia Katz, for the next two. Reading these tales is like playing a lively game of Clue, except with more colorful characters and an AI at your side.

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Detectives and Spies available now!


Kindle and paperback editions of my latest collection are available now! Also, look for my new Steve Heller & Joe "Red" Sullivan story in the Jan/Feb issue of Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, out now.

Tuesday, December 5, 2023

New mystery collection featuring stories with Julius Katz + Morris Brick + Mike Stone


THREE sections. Four different types of mystery and crime stories.

Whether it’s the brilliant Boston detective Julius Katz, or his sister Julia, the first three stories in the KATZ section are traditional mysteries. A crime has been committed, the potential suspects are questioned, and the guilty party is exposed. While the fourth story in the KATZ section, Archie’s Been Stolen!, has the same style, tone and humor as all the other Julius Katz and Archie stories, it’s a caper. There’s no mystery to solve, only a heist of sorts to commit.

The three stories in the BRICK section are crime thrillers featuring investigator Morris Brick, his bull terrier Parker, and the rest of the MBI team. These stories and the five Morris Brick novels that I wrote under the Jacob Stone pseudonym for Kensington have similar humor and style, are fast-paced, and are populated by hardened criminals and mobsters. Where they differ is the novels have very bad people committing horrific acts while the stories are lighter. While there’s plenty of danger in these stories, ultimately no one gets badly hurt.

The two stories in the STONE section features Hell’s only operating private eye, Mike Stone, from my novel Everybody Lies in Hell. Even with the unique setting and the fantastic elements, such as souls being tormented by demons and demonic racing horses that bite the heads off of jockeys, these are hardboiled PI stories. These stories are about stripping away the self-deceptions and lies we tell ourselves to expose the ugly truths underneath, and there’s not much more hardboiled than that!

So given that these are all mystery and crime stories, why the title Detectives and Spies? While all the stories have either detectives or spies acting as detectives, three of the stories are a merging of the mystery and spy genres.

Kindle and paperback editions of Detective and Spies will be available in one week!

Saturday, November 18, 2023

My Julius Katz paperback collection


With 'Detective and Spies' coming out Dec. 12th, I gave a hard look at the paperback versions of my other Julius Katz books and ended up redoing 'Julius Katz and Archie' and 'More Julius Katz and Archie.' The change to 'More Julius Katz and Archie' was simply changing the font to Garamond 12-pt, which I'm using for all of these books, and which I decided is (for me) the ideal font for a book. Along with changing the font for 'Julius Katz and Archie', I also changed the size of the paperback from 6in x 9 in, to 5 in by 8 in, which I think is a much more attractive size. I also a cover designed as opposed to using Amazon's cover creator for the original paperback. The new paperback design:

This new version will be available for purchase on Dec. 1st. With these changes, I now have a set of paperbacks that Julius Katz fans will be proud to put on their shelves, and will have (in my opinion) the perfect font and size for reading.

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Coming Dec. 12th -- Detectives and Spies


Katz. Brick. Stone. Traditional mysteries. Crime thrillers. Hardboiled PI. The Katz section has 4 stories, including a new novella, "Julius Katz and the Ruined Roast." The Brick section has 3 stories, including the new story "James & Bond." The Stone section has two PI in Hell stories starring my PI from Everybody Lies in Hell.

Detectives and Spies will be available as a kindle ebook and paperback on Dec 12th. 

Saturday, November 11, 2023

My horror+crime novel Blood Crimes on sale for $0.99

Blood Crimes is a genre-bending collision of dark urban fantasy and crime that rides shot-gun with Jim and Carol as they carve a homicidal path cross-country. Jim is infected with the vampire virus. Carol isn't. Yet. But they're united in their hunt for society’s most dangerous predators for Jim's dinner -- so he can feed without harming the innocent. What they don't know is that they're not alone. There are others on their trail, and the climax of Blood Crimes is a shocking jolt of pure mayhem and rock 'n roll violence.

On sale now for $0.99.

Sunday, October 8, 2023

For this Halloween season

I might be better known for my crime and mystery fiction, but I've also written a few horror novels should provide the necessary chills and atmosphere for this upcoming Halloween season:

"Classic pulp, noir, and horror--think James N. Cain and Bukowski and Palahniuk--are all ground up in a blender and the result is a nasty, wild, and ultimately redemptive novel that only Dave Zeltserman could write." Paul Tremblay

"A superb mix of humor and horror...Zeltserman orchestrates events perfectly...Readers will keep turning pages to see how the ambiguous plot resolves." -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"Zeltserman's monster is every bit as eloquent as Shelley's, though his rage is more focused. This is juicy material for Franken-fans, and Zeltserman is just faithful enough to the original that his many fresh contributions feel entirely normal. Well, abnormal, to be accurate, but deliciously so." Daniel Kraus, Booklist (*Starred Review*)

"The story is at once tender, brutal, fantastic, and vibrantly real. A unique and splendid novel" ― Booklist Starred Review

"The sympathy that Zeltserman invokes on behalf of Henry is heartbreaking, and readers will fully believe in both the madness and the greatness of his tragic young hero." -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"Dave, has managed to meld the two genres of crime and horror into one hell of a ride, PI's, crime lords, drug gangs, sultry babes and more low life scum than you can count all collide with explosive results in this genre bending masterpiece. If you like crime buy this book, if you like horror buy this book, if you like well written books, buy this book." Jim Mcleod, Ginger Nuts of Horror

"This fast-paced, gritty psychological tale balances the fine line between mystery and horror" Library Journal

Thursday, September 7, 2023

Sunday, September 3, 2023

Another Everybody Lies in Hell excerpt


One of my squatters who acted as a cabdriver and went by the name of Edwin usually kept his yellow cab at the corner of Pierrepont and Hicks. All I could do was hope he was there now. As I ran thunder exploded beside me as if bombs were being tossed at me, but what was coming my way was a hell of a lot deadlier and scarier than any bomb.

I didn’t look back as I ran. I knew I’d see more of Brooklyn melting away and being replaced by a desolate mountain terrain, and in the middle of all this Al Zaoud and his horde of murderous cutthroats would be riding their demon stallions at full gallop. In my mind’s eye I could imagine those horses’ eyes shining bloodred and froth pouring from their mouths and steam blowing out of their flaring nostrils. I knew they still had to be a half mile or more away, but I couldn’t shake this sensation of them being directly behind me. I could almost feel on the back of my neck the pungent steam that they’d be exhaling; a steam that would smell no different than burning sulfur.

I wanted to kiss Edwin full on the lips when I saw him sitting in his cab where I hoped it would be, and given that he resembled a bloated bullfrog with a really bad complexion, that was saying something. I jumped in the back of his cab and told him to start driving. “Go over the Brooklyn Bridge into Manhattan and head uptown towards the Bronx,” I ordered him breathlessly. “And there’s an extra fifty for you if you ignore the speed limits.”

“Unusual weather we’re having,” he stammered out dumbly, his reflection in the rearview mirror showing a dead fish paleness to his face, his eyes wide open but with little life in them. Squatters have a defense mechanism where they go catatonic whenever they’re confronted with the fact that the reality they’ve adopted isn’t real. He was close to shutting down, but I didn’t have time to pull him out of the driver’s seat and take his place. I looked behind me and could see that the Brooklyn landscape was erasing quickly. Al Zaoud and his horde were close enough now that I could make out the severed heads tied to their horses’ manes.

“If you don’t start driving now I’ll put a bullet in the back of your skull,” I yelled at Edwin. “I swear to God I will!”

 “Jesus, what’s the rush?” he muttered half under his breath. Even if he looked directly at Al Zaoud and his murderous horde he wouldn’t acknowledge their existence. But he pulled away from the curb and headed toward the bridge and away from Al Zaoud. He wasn’t going nearly fast enough but at least he was moving. I reached over the back of his seat and pinched the top of his right ear and gave it a hard twist.

“Ow!” he cried.

“Give it more gas or I’ll bloody rip your ear off!”

He gave it more gas and the tires squealed. Al Zaoud was still gaining on us as more of my Brooklyn faded from sight, but at least we were moving now at a more reasonable speed. At least we had a chance. If Al Zaoud’s reality causes a ravine or mountain to materialize in his path, that would slow the bastard down enough where I might be able to escape him. Still, though, the buffer between us was disappearing quickly, and if something didn’t change it would only be a matter of seconds before I’d be pulled into his godforsaken reality.

“You better damn well floor it! And if you as much as touch the brakes I’ll fucking kill you!”

“Jesus, Mike, what’s gotten into you?” Edwin cried, but the taxi leapt forward as he pushed down on the gas pedal. The car did a little side-to-side jig as he almost crashed up, but he got it back under control and had it speeding over the bridge. We were maybe three quarters over it when the other end of the bridge faded away, replaced by Al Zaoud’s hellish world. I watched as one of the zombies jumped from the middle of the bridge but never made it into the East River as he disappeared beneath the rocky terrain that replaced my reality. I guess given a choice of being drowned in the river or crushed under tons of rock and soil there wouldn’t be much of a difference as far as that zombie was concerned

Edwin had the cab shaking again as he almost lost control for a second time. “I’m gonna crash up with the way you’re making me drive,” he cried out.

“Don’t you dare slow down!”

He didn’t slow down, but he started blubbering. “The cops are going to throw me in jail and take away my hack license. I don’t know what I’ll do without my hack license. Jesus, Mike, you’re killing me here.”

I laughed at that. A nervous, excitable, near hysterical laugh. It wasn’t me that was going to be killing him. If Al Zaoud caught up to us, it would be that crazy medieval warlord killing him for all eternity. And besides, my reality didn’t have any squatters acting like cops, at least none that I’d ever seen, so he had nothing to worry about on that front.

“Let me deal with any cops, you concentrate on getting us the hell out of here.”

“What’s the rush? For Chrissakes, what’s the rush?”

I didn’t bother answering him as he continued to blubber away, but I did let out my breath when I saw that we caught a break. A ravine appeared between us and Al Zaoud. It wasn’t steep enough to stop him for long, but it would slow him down, maybe enough for me to escape him.