Mystery Authors You May Have Missed
Marcus Sakey

Photo of Marcus Sakey

Sakey was born in Flint, Michigan and attended the University of Michigan. After working ten years in advertising and marketing, he decided to give writing a try. In researching his first novel The Blade Itself (2007), he shadowed homicide detectives, toured the morgue, and learned to pick a deadbolt in under a minute. He currently lives in Chicago with his wife.

What he writes: Sakey does not write books for the fainthearted. They are raw, real, visceral, heart-pounding rides on the mean streets of Chicago. Sakey has been quoted that he likes to “put his characters through hell.” The tension builds so high, you need heart pills. Chicago has never been more alive and vivid than in his brutal, action-filled novels. To say Sakey is dark is to say sugar is sweet.


List of works
  The Blade Itself (2007)  
  Good People (2008)  
  At the City's Edge (2008)  
  The Amateurs (2009)  
Anthologies containing Sakey's short stories
  These Guns for Hire (2006)
  Chicago Blues (2007)
  Killer Year (2008)
  Thriller 2 (2009)
  Sex, Thugs, and Rock & Roll (2009)
The Amateurs was nominated as the best thriller of 2009 by Romantic Times magazine
Good People was nominated for a Barry Award for best thriller of 2008
The Blade Itself won The Strand Critic's Award for best first novel
Esquire named The Blade Itself one 2007’s five best reads
His story "The Desert Here and the Desert Far Away" was nominated for a Macavity Award and was also chosen one of the five best stories of 2009 by the International Thriller Writers Organization
What the critics say
"Sakey's brilliant debut, a crime novel set in Chicago, is a must read." - Publishers Weekly
"Neither a simple nor a stereotypical thriller...The action is frenetic, the suspense high, and the results shocking. Highly recommended." - Library Journal
"Few of us remember the debuts of some of today's best genre writers, such as Elmore Leonard and Stephen King…with the publication of Marcus Sakey's first novel, we have the chance to." - The Washington Post
"A white-knuckle story…with a cool, commanding style." - The New York Times Book Review
"Stunning…Sakey gets everything right. The Blade Itself moves at such lightning speed that its only flaw may be leaving us wanting more." - Florida Sun-Sentinel
"Sakey's brilliant debut is a must read. From the thrilling opening to the riveting ending, the tension ratchets up to almost unbearable levels." - Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Keenly crafted and cinematic…Sakey holds a mirror up to the city and in its reflection captures local as well as universal truths." - Chicago Sun-Times
"Nothing short of brilliant…as much a work of literary fiction as crime fiction." - Publishers Weekly


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