But Fusilli is also the author of the award-winning series of mystery novels featuring lead character Terry Orr, like "Closing Time," "A Well Known Secret," "Tribeca Blues" and the latest, "Hard, Hard City," which was named the best novel of 2004 by Mystery Ink Magazine.
Fusilli has appeared at the Weehawken Library on several occasions to talk about his work, as a favor to his old college buddy.
"I kept that friendship with Jim over the years and we remain in contact," Cahill said. "I went to a couple of readings that featured Jim and I found that there is a much larger series of authors who write similar books."
The type of novels that Cahill is referring to is called "noir fiction," mystery novels that are written from the criminal's perspective instead of the police officer or detective's.
"Some of the books don't even have a cop in it," Cahill said. "It was a very popular style in the 1920s and 30s, with authors like Raymond Chandler and James M. Cain."
"The Postman Always Rings Twice," "The Big Sleep," and "Farewell, My Lovely" are examples of the noir fiction style of novels that were later made into motion pictures.
"There are a lot of people who are fascinated with that style of writing," Cahill said.
It gave Cahill an idea to hold a library event that would feature some authors of these popular novels, including his friend Fusilli.
On Thursday, June 8, beginning at 7:30 p.m. at the Senior Nutrition Center on Highwood Avenue, the Weehawken Free Public Library will present "Night Falls on Weehawken: A Noir Literary Event."
Award winning writers
Besides Fusilli, three other novelists from the noir fiction genre will give presentations that evening, namely Peter Spiegelman, whose debut novel, "Black Maps" was the 2004 Shamus Award winner for Best Novel; S.J. Rozan, who has written nine novels and won numerous awards in the field; and Reed Farrel Coleman, whose books "Walking the Perfect Square" and "The James Deans" were best sellers.
"These are realistic crime dramas, adult dramas, so people should be aware," Cahill said. "These authors will read from their works, then talk about it and have books to be signed. S.J. Rozan is the most decorated writer in this field. These authors have won every award imaginable. The style is very gritty and direct and the dialogue has to snap, so it makes for entertaining reading. There aren't many people who write in this style, but it is very popular. I enjoy this style very much. It's right in your face and very detailed."
Admission to the presentation is free. For more information, contact the library at (201) 863-7823.