Poughkeepsie Shuffle by Dietrich Kalteis, ECW Press

Poughkeepsie Shuffle: A Crime Novel

Kalteis, Dietrich

  • Jeff Nichols — a man strong of conviction but weak of character — is fresh out of the Don Jail, looking for work — any kind of work — and a way back into Ann Ryan’s good graces. She waited for his return from prison but is quickly running short on patience. An ex-inmate and friend gets Jeff a job at Ted Bracey’s used car lot, selling cars for commission only. But it’s not enough to keep him and Ann afloat in mid-80s Toronto, and the lure of easy money soon gets Jeff involved in smuggling guns from upstate New York. With that sweet Poughkeepsie cash, now he can keep his promises to Ann; he even buys them a house, but conceals the source of the money. As Jeff gets in deeper and deeper, everyone around him learns how many rules he’s willing to bend and just how far he’ll go to get on the fast track to riches. That he’s a guy who doesn’t let lessons from past mistakes get in the way of a good score.


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  • Dietrich Kalteis is the award-winning author of Ride the Lightning (bronze medal winner, 2015 Independent Publisher Book Awards, for best regional fiction), The Deadbeat Club, Triggerfish, House of Blazes (silver medal winner, 2017 Independent Publisher Book Awards, for best historical fiction), and Zero Avenue. His novel The Deadbeat Club has been translated to German, and 50 of his short stories have also been published internationally. He lives with his family in West Vancouver, BC.

  • Published: September 2018

    ISBN: 9781770414013

    Dimensions: 5 x 7.75 in.

    Pages: 280


“The dialogue recalls Elmore Leonard . . . The antics are good fun. Best read for the pleasures to be found around the edges.” — Booklist Online

“For the perfect crime caper cocktail you need a good(ish) guy in over his head, a bevy of bad guys and scumbags, a get-rich-quick scheme doomed to failure and a dash of dark humor. Poughkeepsie Shuffle has all these ingredients in spades.” — Simon Wood, USA Today bestselling author of Saving Grace

Poughkeepsie Shuffle weaves a violent tale about banged up people with hearts full of rust. Crossing the border between bleak and bleaker, Kalteis effortlessly shifts gears from broken dreams to petty schemes with a rhythmic voice that’s all his own. If you read one book about gun smuggling, used car sales and hair restoration this year — make it this one.” — S.W. Lauden, author of the Greg Salem punk rock P.I. series

"For several years now, Dietrich Kalteis has been churning out top-notch crime novels from north of the border. There are inevitable comparisons to a Canadian Elmore Leonard for his rogue’s galleries of criminals and crooks. His latest, Poughkeepsie Shuffle, keeps the low-life parade rolling along . . . There are few others writing novels focused solely on the criminals who do it nearly as well." — Criminal Element

“There is probably no other mystery writer of the Canadian breed with such readability and crime-caper perfectness than the west coast-based Dietrich Kalteis . . . Kalteis is the master of writing about lowlifes and this latest one outdoes his best . . . It is a perfect crime novel for a rainy afternoon, a great stick-to-your-chair read, a wonderful Canadian crime novel.” — Owen Sun Sound Times

Poughkeepsie Shuffle is a fast-moving combination of crime caper and convincing character studies that are worthy of peak period Elmore Leonard.” — Punk Noir Magazine

“Dietrich Kalteis writes about 1980s Toronto crooks in a style that’s breezy and confident, comic and ribald.” —Toronto Star

“Nobody portrays lowlifes gunning for the high life as credibly as Dietrich Kalteis. Poughkeepsie Shuffle delivers a s***load of excitement, and a glimmer of light, in one badass world.” — John Farrow, author of The Storm Murders Trilogy

“Full of jaw-smacking fistfights, rip-roaring car chases, and gun-blazing gang battles, Poughkeepsie Shuffle delivers a mighty thump of thrills and spills, and carloads of mean-tempered sons of bitches.” — Lancashire Evening Post

“Kalteis does it again — shoots us into the seedy side of criminal life with a raunchy cast of posers and thugs and one bold anti-hero . . . A master craftsman, . . . Kalteis knows how to rock our senses exponentially.” — Ottawa Review of Books

“It’s not for nothing that Kalteis has been compared with the great character-and-dialogue-creator Elmore Leonard, with work that is fast, harsh, violent and funny – if in a melancholy and even tragic sort of way. . . There may be violent people, greedy people, and even psychopaths in a Kalteis novel, but his special and delightful gift is in the bounce and joy of his writing.” — Sudbury Star

“A crime novel of astonishing detail and scope . . . This blistering and uncompromising crime novel is a starkly realistic narrative told with unrestrained violence and frequently outrageous humour. This is a high-octane page turner, populated with well drawn complex and edgy characters up against seemingly impossible odds and authentic sounding dialogue. Fans of noir crime will not be disappointed.” — James D.A. Terry blog