With HAP AND LEONARD: BLOOD AND LEMONADE, Joe R. Lansdale delivers an impressive story

Reviews have started appearing for the Joe R. Lansdale’s forthcoming HAP AND LEONARD: BLOOD AND LEMONADE.

Char’s Horror Corner delights in the book.

Joe Lansdale can always be counted on to deliver an impressive story and in this case, he delivers several.

These short stories are presented around the framework of Hap and Leonard chatting-sometimes in Hap’s truck, sometimes at the DQ and towards the end, back home at Hap’s house with Bret and Chance. They’re almost all about Hap, but some are about both Hap and Leonard and how their friendship originally developed.


Those two were my favorites but every story here is good and they’re all told in the trademark style of the Champion Mojo Storyteller. Which of course means, there is a lot of humor here as well as magnificent storytelling. There’s also a touch of poignancy to some of the tales and I liked that just fine. I bet you will too.

Highly recommended to fans of Joe Lansdale and the Hap and Leonard series!

Szatmári Péter at OLVASLAK likes the mosaic novel.

The dramas are really exciting in most of the novellas, there’s murder, sex, school bullying and racism as well. The dialogues are in Hap and Leonard’s well-known, great style, and there’s no political correctness around, but racism in almost all of the other characters’ talking. The reader meets with Hap’s family too: his mother takes home a 9 year old black boy, and there are even more stories about Hap’s father, who generally hated the niggers, but liked many black guys, and he was fair and very-very strong…

The best story is the 8th, where Hap and Leonard found a dead family in a boat under the water, and later they became captives of drug-dealers, who have drug in that boat. It’s exciting and it has interesting twists – it was my personal favorite in the book.


But the overall quality of the stories are high, almost all of them are very exiting or touching. If somebody doesn’t want to start the Hap and Leonard series with the very first book, this 13th would be a good selection, and it’s obviously recommended for the existing fans too.

Photo: Karen Lansdale

For WRITER’S BONE, Sean Tuohy interviews Lansdale about RUSTY PUPPY.

Sean Tuohy: In RUSTY PUPPY we find Hap and Leonard investigating a racially motivated murder? Where did this plot line come from?

Joe Lansdale: Racially motivated murders are nothing new, but there has certainly been a lot of it in the news lately, so it seemed like the right background for a story with concerns about police corruption. I think it was an idea in the back of my mind for a long time, but there just wasn’t any plot to stick it to. I don’t plot. I get up and write, but my subconscious surely does, and I would guess it was one of the man stories it was working on, and when I sat down to write, that was the door that opened.

ST: RUSTY PUPPY is a stand-alone that is great for new fans of the series. As the creator, what would you like new readers to take away from this novel?

JL: It’s part of the Hap and Leonard series, but like all of the books, it stands alone. You need not have one to read the other. You can start anywhere. Sure, there is information from previous novels, but it’s nothing that would cause you to be lost.

ST: This is the latest entry in a much loved and long-running book series. As a writer, how do you keep yourself interested in the characters after all these years?

JL: I don’t write about them all the time. I have bursts where I do a couple Hap and Leonard novels, and as of late stories and novellas about them, and then I move on to other things. I love coming back to them. For me, I stop their aging process when I’m not writing about them. I’ve had eight years between their adventures, and I’ve had four years. And so on. I write them when I feel driven to do so. I was happy with the television series, so that may have inspired me more. But it’s the books that matter.

Lawrence Block, on his eponymous site, posted 1,000 words from
“The Projectionist,” Lansdale’s contribution to the Block-edited anthology IN SUNLIGHT OR IN SHADOW: STORIES INSPIRED BY THE PAINTINGS OF EDWARD HOPPER.

Edward Hopper painted “New York Movie” in 1939; three-quarters of a century later, Pegasus picked it for the cover of IN SUNLIGHT OR IN SHADOW. Joe Lansdale doesn’t specify the town in which “The Projectionist” takes place. It could be set almost anywhere, and could take place at almost any time.


by Joe R. Lansdale

There’s some that think I got it easy on the job, but they don’t know there’s more to it than plugging in the projector. You got to be there at the right time to change reels, and you got to have it set so it’s seamless, so none of the movie gets stuttered, you know. You don’t do that right, well, you can cause a reel to flap and there goes the movie right at the good part, or it can get hung up and the bulb will burn it. Then everyone down there starts yelling, and that’s not good for business, and it’s not good for you, the boss hears about it, and with the racket they make when the picture flubs, he hears all right.

I ain’t had that kind of thing happen to me much, two or three times on the flapping, once I got a burn on a film, but it was messed up when we got it. Was packed in wrong and got a twist in it I couldn’t see when I pulled it out. That wasn’t my fault. Even the boss could see that.

Still, you got to watch it.

For more info about HAP AND LEONARD: BLOOD AND LEMONADE, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover by Elizabeth Story