These books are incredibly hard to find. Darby and the gang were published by a press that operates without marketing or publicity of any kind and their distribution, for titles like these, is exclusively through Amazon. SO! Order from Amazon if it looks like you might enjoy them! They received great reviews, garnered fine blurbs, they’ve been optioned by three time Oscar winning producer Mark Harris, they’ve been translated into Italian by the absolutely superior publisher Fanucci, but that does not mean they’re in a bookstore near you. They aren’t. Interestingly, with the exception of Tattoo Machine, ALL of these books were sold in a period of weeks. Six years of writing sold virtually at the same time. Had I known they would get these blurbs and reviews I would have played my cards far, far, far differently, but here they are. Great reviews, broadcast to an empty room. I’m glad I wrote them! Practice! And writing, like any art, when pursued earnestly, is its own reward. “What I cannot create, I do not understand.” ― Richard P. Feynman. Well said.

Book number three in the Darby Holland Crime Trilogy, just out and available on amazon or on the barnes and noble website. click on the link.

A fond farewell to Darby, Delia, and The Lucky Supreme. I had fun! These books were a blast to write and I’m glad they were well received by critics. Many doors opened with these novels. Special thanks to the kind and good people who cheered me on during this effort. The good voices- Lilly Golden, Tom Hildreth, Sylvia Mann, Nick Yetto, Ace Atkins, Mikel Ross, Mike Martinez, Mary Morgan, Scott Eastland, William Neal McPheeters, Asako Hosoe, Ellen Derrick, Mark Harris, Riccardo Burbi, Mark Ledford at Kilroy’s Tattoo Portland, Darren ‘The Dude’ Rosa at Rising Dragon Tattoo (Manhattan), Django Convery at American Tradition Tattoo (Sacramento), Matt Reed at Tigerlilly Tattoo (Portland), Masami Sannyas and Adam Pietras at The Dakini Tattoo Collective in Philadelphia, and Rick Lopez Cofan at Hard Ink Philadelphia. A very special thanks to my heroes, the superb authors who read these books and then graciously wrote something good about it. Read their books and I’ll bet you’ll find them as inspiring as I do.

"This is a really good book full of bad people you'll sorely miss as soon as you're not reading about them anymore. Get started and you'll get over it sooner." -- Thomas Perry, New York Times bestselling author of Nightlife. (NOTE- check out his new book The Burglar)

“The Animals After Midnight is the literary equivalent of Quentin Tarantino directing a season of Portlandia with the spirit of Charles Bukowski consulting.”—Dave Zeltserman, author of Small Crimes and Husk (Note- this guy is great!)

"There is one Portland, Oregon that is marked  by polite, gentrified civility, and then there's its fever-dream, noir-drenched opposite, a dimension reached by walking out the back door of the Lucky Supreme, the Old Town tattoo parlor dreamed up by Jeff Johnson and overseen by master tattist Darby Holland, another mind-altering creation of Johnson's.  In this universe, the good guys come from the side-show tents, the bad guys have escaped from the cages, and the mayhem is managed by a ringmaster with a surgeon's touch and a comic's timing.  Bravo."—Les Stanford, New York Times best-selling author of Last Train To Paradise (NOTE- check out Done Deal, a personal favorite of mine)

Darby Holland has a complex backstory, as shown in Johnson’s engrossing third novel featuring the Portland, Ore., tattoo parlor and strip club owner (after 2017’s A Long Crazy Burn). Early on, for example, the reader learns that Darby once drugged a real estate developer and sent “him off to die in Russia.” Now some of that checkered past has resurfaced. Darby returns home one night to find concrete evidence to buttress his suspicion that someone has been stalking him—footprints in the dirt outside his bedroom window. The search to identify his stalker turns deadly. Eventually, the trail leads to Midnight Rider Productions, which has been producing episodic documentaries. The company’s sadistic business model is to destroy a person’s life and film the resulting decline, which in at least one instance ends in suicide. Johnson lightens the heavy subject matter with odd subplots, including Darby’s journey into the woods to bury a friend’s nephew’s dead and frozen pet. Elmore Leonard fans should be pleased. —(Feb.) PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

Lucky Supreme kindle in Italian!

Lucky Supreme
By Jeff Johnson

Deadbomb Bingo Ray

A NOTE ON DEADBOMB BINGO RAY- this book cannot be found anywhere except on the internet. Very small press with very small distribution and nothing in the way of marketing and publicity. But wonderful people! I liked both of them. This book is well made, with a beautiful cover and available on Amazon. It received great reviews, picked up some very fine blurbs, and many fine people in Hollywood have had this book under the microscope.

Deadbomb Bingo Ray
By Jeff Johnson

Deadbomb Bingo Ray

A Vegas fixer moves into the underworld of Philadelphia. Running a reverse burn on a hedge fund manager seemed like just another deal. Instead, he enters a high stakes where the rules bend in unimaginable ways.

"This evil strut of a book is wildly smart, utterly warped and exultant in its own mad glory."-Warren EllisTransmetropolitan

"We lost George V. Higgins too long ago; thank goodness we now have Jeff Johnson. Deadbomb Bingo Ray is a shot of good old 70's muscle-noir for 2017, written with a bounce and a turn of phrase that elevates it above the pack. If this guy's under your radar, recalibrate!"--Sean Doolittle, award-winning author of The Cleanup and Lake Country

“Jeff Johnson writes with a poet's rhythm, a boxer's attitude and an artist's sense of style and flair.”--Norman Green, Shamus Award Winner of The Last Gig

“Hard-boiled, hilarious, and as serious as a straight razor. It has more good ideas, great jokes, and splendid writing on one page than most books have in a full chapter.—Tim Halinan, author of Simeon Grist, Poke Rafferty, and the Junior Bender series

“The launch of Johnson’s new series, as inventive and comic as the Darby Holland books (Lucky Supreme, etc.), introduces Philadelphia fixer Dead Bomb Bingo Ray. … Descriptive gems—“the costume brought out the side of him that was dangerous in a next-level way, beyond angry beehive and well into biblical-serpent territory”—make Johnson’s writing a rare treat. ” –PUBLISHER’S WEEKLY

“-a fast-paced, quick-witted neonoir caper series packed with cons and double crosses, larger-than-life characters, and vivid language. Bound to attract fans of Norman Green, Roger Hobbs, and Max Allan Collins’s “Quarry” novels, as well as the gritty works of Stuart MacBride and Pete Dexter.” --Pick of the month, November- Library Journal Review


-cue music:

Les Feuilles Motes, The Rosenberg Trio, live at the North Sea Jazz Festival ‘92

            Ray was eavesdropping when the breakdown on the setup came through. Three kids at the table across from him in the anarchist café were talking about video games and scotch, and how children younger than cigarettes didn’t care for jazz. One of them was named Paul. He watched their lips from behind his shades while listening to a conversation in the office down the street through a wireless ear bud. Deadbomb Bingo Ray was going to burn, they were saying, torched for a crime he committed (last year, get over it) and the wrong kind of roachlife would bounce out of Federal, all in the same astonishing move. They were talking advanced chess. A single taco with every known ingredient. A brilliant plan, except he knew they were planning something, which was why he was spying on them and pretending to eavesdrop on these kids in the first place.

            “When it’s all over, Anton Brown will return to the fold,” Tim whispered in his ear. “And with that one man…” He paused dramatically, a familiar self-awe in his voice, and Ray could almost see him, holding his thumb out in that Clinton gesture, “I will change everything.” His fist hammered the desk, not especially hard. “This isn’t like winning a race I was disqualified from, people. This isn’t even competing. This is blowing craters in the racetrack and kidnapping the judges before the show.”

            Tim Cantwell was the mouthpiece in the spendy suit at the big desk in the new office. His end game circled back to hedge funds, which was where everything went to shit the first time. Absolute Return as a lifestyle had been behind the destabilization Anton Brown. The constant lies regarding net asset value had broken his underpowered soul, and at a pivotal moment, too. When Tim’s house of cards was hit with a regulatory colonoscopy, Anton flipped his wig. He didn’t give up anything to the Feds, but he didn’t help Tim either, and as a result four hand-wringing peons with bad lying skills took a four year mandatory fall. Tim escaped with an unscheduled bankruptcy, which of course didn’t mean anything, and a fine he paid for with other people’s money. The resulting down time was a working vacation, which he used to plan-n-tan, poolside in Costa Rica, where he turned a sunny tropical walnut and devised the masterpiece he’d just outlined.

            Ray got up and buttoned his coat. It was warm for November in Philadelphia, but it was still November. He adjusted his shades and took one last sip of coffee as the kid Paul paused mid-nonsense and gave Ray a brave but boyish once over. A guy in a suit had no place in that café, Paul’s squint said, especially not one who knew how to tie a tie and comb his hair. In his ear, Tim launched into a lurid side pocket smokescreen set up to ‘value’ his new crappy assets, and the confidence in his voice put a spring in Ray’s step as he took to the sidewalk and headed for his car.

            Tim knew that Ray had been paid to give Anton Brown a push in the wrong direction, along with everything else, for a small pool of wealthy investors looking for revenge. No one in Tim’s world knew that he’d kept pushing Anton afterward. A month after Anton snapped and left Tim and his team at the mercy of the Feds, Ray had arranged for him to snap again. And again. And again. It had been easy to turn Anton Brown into a bank robber, to make him so crazy that he turned on the industry he mistakenly believed had made him crazy in the first place. Ray had begun to suspect that all that crazy had contaminated him about a week ago, just before he learned that Tim Cantwell was back from vacation. A solid year of redirecting Anton’s stale, colorless little mind had made him feel curiously bloodthirsty in a brand new way, and now here he was, one year later, on his way to have lunch with Abigail, Anton’s new boss, the object of Anton’s desire. And make Anton Brown freak out yet again.

            Abigail seemed a little crazy, too.

Lucky Supreme, a novel of many crimes

The Lucky Supreme is a tattoo shop in Old Town Portland. When some artwork with bad history goes missing, Darby Holland has to get it back before its history comes back to haunt him.

“Lucky Supreme is one hell of a book. I didn't know anyone could do noir like this. Now I know Jeff Johnson can.” —Joe R. Lansdale

"As hip and cool as the neon rain-slicked streets of Portland. Darby Holland is a modern hero in the mold of Sam Spade and Marlowe only with more tattoos and in steel-toed boots. A funny and very gritty book with cool folks, cool music, and wonderful sense of place."–-Ace Atkins, New York Times Bestselling Author

"What wonderful Northwest noir. LUCKY SUPREME cruises through Portland's underworld with a raunchy grace and an unfailing sense of black humor. I loved it." —T. Jefferson Parker, New York Times bestselling & 3-time Edgar Award-winning author

“. . . The inventive, unorthodox Darby effectively marshals his forces against thugs, officials, and even federal agents in this amusing crime tale."—PUBLISHERS WEEKLY Starred Review

“The bastard lovechild of Charles Bukowski and Raymond Chandler, Lucky Supreme is a novel so good you’ll want to ink it into your skin.”—Craig Johnson, author of the Walt Longmire Mysteries

Jeff Johnson is the real deal. His work is fast and funny, down and dirty—one moment as smooth as 18-year-old bourbon and the next as rough as a country road. A great talent, a pleasure to read.”-–Brad Smith, author of Red Means Run

“Lucky Supreme by Jeff Johnson. Don’t be surprised if you pull an all-nighter to finish Lucky Supreme which starts off with a theft in a tattoo parlor in Portland, Oregon and launches the protagonist on a dark, thrilling adventure full of deception, freaks, and surreal situations.” Top 25 novels of 2017 --MEDIUM

“Quick, thrilling, this is a novel filled with many crimes and is just the beginning of what looks to be a very interesting trilogy.”—SUSPENSE MAGAZINE

“Johnson wields the lurid pen of twentieth century crime novelists like Raymond Chandler and Mickey Spillane and stands with contemporaries like Michael Connelly and Walter Mosley to grace the grit of dark streets.”—THE EUGENE WEEKLY 


“Lucky Supreme by Jeff Johnson. Don’t be surprised if you pull an all-nighter to finish Lucky Supreme which starts off with a theft in a tattoo parlor in Portland, Oregon and launches the protagonist on a dark, thrilling adventure full of deception, freaks, and surreal situations.” Top 25 novels of 2017 --MEDIUM

*First Foreign Rights Deal with excellent Italian publisher Fanucci!

Fiction Book Review: Lucky Supreme: A Novel of Many Crimes by Jeff ...


“Lucky Supreme” by Jeff Johnson – Welcome To Suspense Magazine

Oct 22, 2017 - LUCKY SUPREME. By Jeff Johnson. This is what you'd call a “fun read.” Quick, thrilling, this is a novel filled with many crimes and is just the ...

“Lucky supreme” by Jeff Johnson / Review – the shelter of books



            Old Town.

            Every city had the same excuse for having one. The heart of a city is a thick place, where the towers had their footprints, where the sugar deals were made, where the big brains nested and the roads and freeways were arteries. But you had to keep the tumors somewhere, and in every case it had the same name. It wasn’t a place where the strong survived, because they either became overnight kings and winged to higher ground, or they became part of the blur of fire and gears and thus something else all together. The weak never figured into the population either, because the nature of the game was too constant, and their wasn’t enough junk protein to make chewing the rest of the package worthwhile. What was left in between was the dream factory, where people hid in plain sight, where colossal miracles died at birth unnoticed, and where everything floated on a sea of vice, lies, and decrepitude. The right mixture of animal stamina and imagination could take you far in that sooty wilderness. Or so I kept telling myself.

The tattoo flash of Roland Norton, Panama 1956

The tattoo flash of Roland Norton, Panama 1956

“Johnson’s frenetic follow-up to Lucky Supreme opens with a bang when, early one morning, a bomb destroys Lucky Supreme, the tattoo parlor owned by Portland, Ore., tattoo artist Darby Holland in the city’s Old Town. Thanks to a last-minute phone warning, Darby leaves the store shortly before the explosion. Darby sets out to find those responsible, but the two federal agents who interview him right after the bombing harass him constantly. A prostitute provides him with his first clue, which leads him to a pimp who gives him a vicious beating. Despite this setback, Darby persists in following a convoluted trail that brings him up against seemingly untouchable villains such as Russian real estate mogul Oleg Turganov. Less than half way in, Darby has killed a man, stolen a ton of cash, and robbed a junkie. “It was a start,” he muses. Darby eventually concocts a devious plan to even the score with the bombers, get the feds off his case, and restore Lucky Supreme. Johnson takes readers on a wickedly rough, terribly strange, oddly amusing trip.”—PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

Knottspeed: A Love Story
By Jeff Johnson

Knottspeed, A Love Story is available on the internet AND at one Barnes and Noble in Nashville!

knottspeed, a love story

Enigmatic, charming, and brutally resourceful, Knottspeed is a man on a mission.

Bullets fly, knives are drawn, and death is waiting to join the fray as the characters cuss, fight, and drink their way out of the dull, uneventful lives they had led before Knottspeed arrived. Will they survive the chaos? Will they survive Knottspeed? All roads collide in Johnson’s irreverent, chaotic novel, with an ending that will leave readers stunned. —(Feb.) PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

Phillip Marlowe meets Huston's Joe Pitt, Knottspeed is legendary, irreverent, and deeply funny. A philosophical love letter to vagabonds and outcasts everywhere. --New York Times bestselling author Kate Moretti

“This book is a gritty and unforgettable odyssey. Some parts are tough, others are hilarious, but all of it's great. Jeff Johnson's writing is remarkable.” –William Jensen, author of Cites of Men

Fiction Book Review: Knottspeed: A Love Story by Jeff Johnson ...


Jan 2, 2017 - Johnson's (Everything Under the Moon) second novel drops readers into the unpredictable world of the infamous and mysterious Knottspeed.

Knottspeed by Jeff Johnson - Fantastic Fiction

https://www.fantasticfiction.com › Jeff Johnson › Knottspeed

Knottspeed by Jeff Johnson - book cover, description, publication history. ... and an accomplished criminal, Knottspeed is experiencing Big Love for the first time ...

Knottspeed: A Love Story: Jeff Johnson: 9781681626666: Amazon ...

From Part Three

            When I picked up that God damned albino at the airport, I had no idea I was about to get him into the exact kind of trouble he was looking for, even thirsting for, filled as he was with divine lust and premonitions and the howl of some beast years wild, deep in the bright cream of escape from zooery. I had no idea I was about to learn anything about the nature of orange fire under the bones of the head, or what some of the most songish of songs were never about, or how the true nature of moonlight could only be seen when reflected in the water of someone else’s eyes. My fare that day was just a scrawny gringo in a wheelchair, with crazed-on-messy blond hair and giant sunglasses that made him look as uniquely strange as I was soon to discover him to be. The United Airlines kid pushing his chair was laughing at something he was using his hands to tell, and I should have taken that as a sign. The man didn’t have any luggage, either. If I drive a cab for another twenty years, I’ll never pick up that combo ever again. Some things you can’t survive learning more than once.

Published by he fine folks at Soft Skull Press, Everything Under The Moon is the only book of mine available at bookstores. Or it was when it came out. Soft Skull is a great group of folks and they produce quality books.

“A briskly paced, splatter-filled crime novel to delight fans of directors Tarantino and Rodriguez.” - KIRKUS

 “This is the werewolf as you haven’t seen it before: talking like a Richard Kadrey novel, walking through Charlie Huston’s dark streets, and snarling like a Jim Harrison creature.” -Steven Graham Jones, author of Mongrels

“In Jeff Johnson’s world, the volume is always cranked up to eleven, the violence is cranked up to the max, and it’s just one damned thing after another. The pace is fast, the plot is racing and restraint has been kicked into the gutter. … And it’s got werewolves. What more do you want?”--Simon R. Green, New York Times Bestselling Author of Tales from the Nightside

A note on the Fanucci edition of Lucky Supreme. This is an exceptionally lovely book. The type, the quality of the paper, the embossing, all of it marvelous. I’m delighted to continue with this fine publisher.

NOTE! Tattoo Machine is different than all my other books. It’s in its 8th printing and THIS ONE is available at bookstores!

 “Johnson’s stingly profane prose, storytelling chops, and offbeat sensibility definitely get under the reader’s skin.” --PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

“Jeff Johnson is a gifted and natural storyteller, and he knows about things you don’t know.”--John Irving, Academy Award Winning author of Cider House Rules

 “One of the best books I’ve read so far this year…” –Jeff VanderMeer, New York Times Bestselling author of the South Reach Trilogy

 “Equally hilarious, alarming, heartbreaking, rebellious, and philosophical, Tattoo Machine gets inside your head...” ---Donald Ray Pollack, author of Knockemstiff

 “Jeff Johnson’s own remarkable story weaves through this engaging and gritty examination of the world of tattoos. With lyrical punch and plenty of scabrous behind-the-scenes shenanigans, Tattoo Machine is an informative, intelligent delight.”--Katherine Dunn, author of Geek Love 

“Funny, outlandish, and sometimes disturbing…” --NEW YORK POST

Magnificent. Lovingly wrapped in Johnson's gift for riveting storytelling and flair for translating the vividly visual into prose, Tattoo Machine: Tall Tales, True Stories and My Life In Ink is an unflinching look at a career that is short on glamour but long on pride.”—THE TORONTO STAR

“Absolutely fascinating.”—THE WASHINGTON POST