July Is Crime Month: The Crime Blotter, Week 4

A curated guide to unlawful activities around town July 23-31

Since July is Crime Month at the Chronicle, the ruffians and reprobates at this rag want to be sure you find as much trouble as possible before August shows up like the spinning red lights of John Law in your rearview. So each week we'll fill you in on films, readings, book clubs, and more where crime does pay – for a while, anyway.

Here are the trouble spots from July 23-31.

Carol Lynley and Noël Coward in Bunny Lake Is Missing

Bunny Lake is Missing
A nearly forgotten psychological thriller from the Sixties, in which the search for a missing child generates unexpected levels of suspicion and paranoia, much of them directed at the child's frantic mother, played by Carol Lynley. Director Otto Preminger dials up the tension with help from the stark black-and-white cinematography of Denys Coop, which casts a pall of dread over London.
Mon., July 23, 7:30pm
Alamo South Lamar, 1120 S. Lamar


Megan Abbott: Give Me Your Hand & Ace Atkins: The Sinners
Two best-selling authors of crime fiction, two new books bound to wind up as bestsellers themselves, one scintillating conversation about writing and murder and who knows what else. Edgar Award-winner Abbott ventures into the lab for her latest, a tale of two old friends in cutthroat competition over a research position. Atkins, meanwhile, returns to Tibbehah County, Miss., for the ninth novel in his series focusing on small-town sheriff Quinn Colson, this time up against a hardass Gulf Coast syndicate family.
Tue., July 24, 7pm
BookPeople, 603 N. Lamar


Ghosts, Murder, and Mayhem Walking Tour
Take a stroll into Austin's past and follow the trail of bodies that have littered Downtown through the years. See Guytown, the German District, and the sites of the Servant Girl Annihilator murders.
Thu., July 26, 8:30pm
Starts at JW Marriott Hotel, 110 W. Second

Jackie Brown
Director Quentin Tarantino gave the Nineties a taste of Seventies blaxploitation in his adaptation of Elmore Leonard's 1992 novel Rum Punch. It was fashioned as a comeback vehicle for Pam Grier, star of Foxy Brown, Coffy, and Friday Foster, who leads a, ahem, killer cast with Robert Forster, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert De Niro, Bridget Fonda, and Michael Keaton.
Fri., July 27, 9pm; Sat., July 28, 1pm; Sun., July 29, 6:15pm
AFS Cinema, 6406 N. I-35 Ste. 3100

Austin Detours "Murder Mystery on Sixth Street" Tour
A Dallas socialite has been found dead in an alley off Austin's party street, and you get to solve the crime in this interactive walking tour from Austin Detours. Complimentary cocktail included, because hard-drinking detective, right? (Not to mention, Sixth Street.) Seventies street clothes encouraged.
Saturdays, 7-9pm
Starts at Susanna Dickinson House, 411 E. Fifth

True Crime Book Club: Killer Clown: The John Wayne Gacy Murders
In 1980, Terry Sullivan helped prosecute John Wayne Gacy for the murders of 33 boys between 1972 and 1978. As such, he brings a close personal knowledge of the case to this book detailing the gruesome serial killings of the man who was known to appear at fund-raising events, parades, and children's parties as Pogo the Clown or Patches the Clown. True crime-loving librarians Julie and Maggie lead this book club that meets monthly at the Central Library.
Wed., July 31, 6:30pm
Austin Central Library, 710 W. Cesar Chavez.


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More July Is Crime Month
Crime Month: <i>Criminal</i>
Crime Month: Criminal
This comics series is made for and best enjoyed in the dark

Robert Faires, Aug. 1, 2019

Crime Month: Tarantino's Alternate History, Where Women Don't Get to Talk a Whole Lot
Women Don't Get to Talk in Tarantino's Universe
Parsing fact from fiction in Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood

Kimberley Jones, July 30, 2019

More by Robert Faires
Last Bow of an Accidental Critic
Last Bow of an Accidental Critic
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Sept. 24, 2021

"Daniel Johnston: I Live My Broken Dreams" Tells the Story of an Artist
The first-ever museum exhibition of Daniel Johnston's work digs deep into the man, the myths

Sept. 17, 2021


July Is Crime Month, Crime Month 2018, Alamo Drafthouse, Austin Film Society, Austin Public Library, Austin Ghost Tours, Austin Detours, BookPeople, Megan Abbott, Ace Atkins, Jackie Brown

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