“Breakage” by Reed Farrel Coleman is the issue’s feature story. Rack up another win for PI Moe Prager’s casebook, and for Coleman, who hits all the right notes. The mystery is a missing person’s case, with emphasis on the characters’ humanity and the scars of wounds sealed, but never really healed.
Editor Rick Ollerman introduces his new magazine with the assertion, “Digest magazines aren’t what they used to be.” There are few crime fiction magazines on newsstands today. Even the influx of new titles, since the advent of Print on Demand, are often infrequent or published erratically. The Magazine intends to shake things up. How? The backing of a publisher like Down & Out Books should help. But The Magazine’s big idea is to leverage a character from a novel series in a brand new short story. In the debut edition, that’s Reed Farrel Coleman’s ex-cop, ex-PI, ex-retiree, Moe Prager.
In fact, every story in issue No. 1 features a series character, making it an ideal venue to reach new readers or delight series’ fans with short, between-novels, adventures. There’s nonfiction too. J. Kingston Pierce, who manages The Rap Sheet website, provides crime fiction news and reviews, and Ollerman introduces the issue’s only reprint in a column called, “A Few Cents a Word.”