Matt Coyle


Matt Coyle is the author of the Rick Cahill crime series. He also hosts the Crime Corner podcast out of San Diego.

Matt Coyle is the author of the bestselling Rick Cahill crime series. Matt knew he wanted to be a crime writer at age fourteen when his father gave him Raymond Chandler’s The Simple Art of Murder. His books have won the Anthony, Shamus, Lefty, Ben Franklin Silver, Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Silver, and San Diego Book Awards, and have been nominated for the multiple Macavity, Shamus and Lefty Awards, as well as named to numerous Best Of lists. Blind Vigil is the seventh book in the Rick Cahill series. Matt hosts the “Crime Corner” podcast on the Authors on the Air Global Radio Network and lives in San Diego with his yellow Lab, Angus, where he is writing the next Rick Cahill novel.

For more on Matt, please visit his website, and check out our reviews of his books Lost Tomorrows and Blind Vigil.


Yesterday’s Echo (2013)

Night Tremors (2015)

Dark Fissures (2016)

Blood Truth (2017)

Wrong Light (2018)

Blind Vigil (2020)

Your biggest literary influences:

Raymond Chandler, Ross Macdonald, T. Jefferson Parker, Robert Crais, Michael Connelly

Last book read:

Fair Warning by Michael Connelly

The book that changed your life:

The Long Goodbye by Raymond Chandler.  I read it in my last quarter of college my senior year in a detective fiction writing class. Chandler’s prose gripped me and reminded me that crime fiction could be so much more than pulp fiction. Chandler showed me that a drunk wasn’t just a drunk, he had a real life and a story to tell. The Long Goodbye demonstrated exactly what Ross Macdonald meant when he said of Chandler, “He wrote like a slumming angel…” Chandler’s writing was at the same time raw and elegant. He wrote with eloquence and grit and showed me that the gray in the private investigator’s world was more interesting than the black and white world of whodunits. He wrote about real people with real problems who made bad choices and had to live with the consequences. That was the world I wanted to write about.

Your favorite literary character:

Not surprisingly, Raymond Chandler’s cynical private detective Philip Marlowe is my favorite literary character. Marlowe lived by his own code and always did what he deemed the right thing, no matter the consequences. He distrusted powerful institutions, whether they be city hall, law enforcement, or gentrified wealth. He was an educated man, but also schooled in the hard knocks of the street and could take a beating and dole one out when necessary. Marlowe finds the truth no matter who gets hurt, including himself. Marlowe’s wry first-person observations give readers a glimpse of his world view plus memorable lines to savor. To me, Philip Marlowe is the father of all fictional private eyes that follow. He is an old-school American hero. Without him, there never would have been a Rick Cahill.

Currently working on:

The next book in the Rick Cahill series.

Words to live by:

Keep your ass in the seat.

Advice for aspiring authors:

Write. Write every day. Write when it’s easy. Write when it’s difficult. And then revise.


Lost Tomorrows:
New York Journal of Books review
Santa Barbara New-Press review
Times of San Diego article

Wrong Light:
San Diego Union-Tribune interview

Blood Truth:
San Diego Union-Tribune interview
Forward Reviews review

Night Tremors:
San Diego Union-Tribune interview

The Rick Cahill Series:
LA Review of Books interview


“With Wrong Light, Matt Coyle is on top of his game and Rick Cahill ascends to the top ranks of the classic private eyes. Coyle knows the secret: digging into a crime means digging into the past. Sometimes it’s messy, sometimes it’s dangerous — always it’s entertaining. You’ll find all of that and more in this great read.” —Michael ConnellyNew York Times bestselling author

“Matt Coyle’s seventh and most intense novel to date [Blind Vigil], is a visceral tour de force of the PI tradition. Emotionally wrenching and haunting, the story got inside me and is yet to go away. Bravo, Matt Coyle, for another wonderful crime novel.” —Jefferson ParkerNew York Times bestselling author

“Sharp, suspenseful, and poignant, Lost Tomorrows hits like a breaking wave and pulls readers into its relentless undertow. Matt Coyle is at the top of his game.” —Meg Gardiner, Edgar Award-winning author

“Following an Anthony Award-winning debut isn’t easy, but Matt Coyle slammed a homer. Hard, tough, humane — Night Tremors is outstanding!” —Robert Crais, Anthony, Macavity, and Shamus Award-winning author