Book Release: Burning Down the House edited by Michel Lee Garrett and T. Fox Dunham

Two years in the making, we are pleased to release Burning Down the House: Crime Fiction Incited by the Songs of the Talking Heads, a charity anthology to help fight climate change. Happy Earth Day!

About the Book

Twelve of today’s most innovative crime fiction authors bring the songs of the Talking Heads to life in this blistering collection.

A charity anthology to benefit the fight against climate change, BURNING DOWN THE HOUSE is a dazzling exploration of what crime fiction can entail — deftly mixing grimy crime, small-town grit lit, literary noir, and tales that blend crime with speculative fiction, sci-fi, road trip comedy, magical realism, and horror.

In this collection, readers will meet musicians desperate to escape their dying towns, con men with violent histories, detectives haunted by the ghosts of the past, women who refuse to be defined by the narrow expectations placed upon them, slimy magicians poised for a final vanishing act — and even a magic talking guitar. They will traverse back alleys populated by the desperate and the violent, attend desert weddings gone horribly wrong, unravel murders wrapped in ambiguity, visit alternate futures defined by ecological collapse and resurgent fascism, travel back to the turn of the 20th century, and experience visions where the very ideas of truth and reality collapse in on themselves.

This collection will delight, challenge and inspire crime readers of all kinds with stories from exciting up-and-comers and award-winning veterans — including Best American Mystery and Suspense-selected author and Shamus Award-winner James D.F. Hannah; World Fantasy Award-winner and Bram Stoker Award-winner P.D. Cacek; Derringer Award-winner Bobby Mathews; Shamus Award-winner Libby Cudmore; and Alex Award-winner Gregory Galloway.

What folks are saying…

“Unputdownable stories about ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances… a devastating account of how humanity repeats the same cycle of mistakes but with ever more catastrophic consequences.”

John MauroBefore We Go Blog

“From Mojave Dust to inner city grit, Burning Down the House spins twelve tales of drifters, grifters, gamblers, and assorted desperados living on the far edges that will forever change the way you hear the Talking Heads. This is a collection not to be missed, featuring stories by some of the best crime writers working today.”

Bill Baber, Derringer Award nominee

“If there’s a theme running through this ragtag collection of stories inspired by the Talking Heads, it’s a subtle but elegant one, wrapped between the mundane and melancholy and universally applied: how are we gonna make it through another goddam day.”

Joe Clifford, author of Junkie Love and A Moth to Flame

“Like the singular band that inspired this great collection, Burning Down The House is an arch and angular affair that packs a powerful punch.”

Paul D. Brazill, author of Guns of Brixton


Nestled in the foothills of West Virginia, Ron Earl Phillips lives with his wife, a daughter, a German Shepherd, and one too many cats.


Michel Lee Garrett is a noir fiction author and Pennsyltucky poet. A queer and transgender writer, her work seeks to examine how inequitable systems manufacture injustice, and how the human condition is ultimately one of rebellion against an absurd world. Her fiction has appeared from Flame Tree Press, Shotgun Honey, Down & Out Books, Cowboy Jamboree, and others. She is the editor of Burning Down The House, a charity anthology incited by the songs of the Talking Heads to benefit the fight against climate change, forthcoming from Shotgun Honey.

Fox Reading at KGB

T. Fox Dunham lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with his wife, Allison. He’s a cancer survivor, modern bard, herbalist, baker and historian. His first book, The Street Martyr, was published by Gutter Books, and the book is in production by Throughline Films. He’s a well-published crime author. He’s also contributed to official Stargate canon with a story published in the Stargate Anthology Points of Origin from Fandemonium Books. More information at & Twitter: @TFoxDunham