The best crime series from the 80's or 90's I HAVEN'T heard of

I'm hoping to reach a little further back in my reading than I've currently been doing--I tend to read mostly from the early 2000s up to present in my spare time, unless I'm going back to the Big Guys like Michael Connelly, Walter Mosley, Ellroy etc.

 

Any recommendations for me? I'm thinking specifically of someone like Daniel Woodrell (http://www.amazon.com/Ones-You-Do-Daniel-Woodrell/dp/0671001353/ref...), in search of another author that core genre fans and writers similarly love, but others may have forgotten--or might not have heard about in the first place.

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I like van de Wetering a lot, but in some of the novels the strained comedy can get irritating. I'm thinking of THE JAPANESE CORPSE. He's at his best with his two cops and their idiosyncrasies.
William Murray, who was the opera critic for the New Yorker, wrote a great series of racetrack mysteries starring a magician named Shifty Lou Anderson. I have enjoyed Dobbyns books as well.
Sarah Weinman (Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind) is doing a piece on Sjowall & Wahloo at the moment. Apparently the Larsson thing is a sort of a revival. Depressing to think that S&W were miles better than the Larsson stuff.
Sarah Weinman's site is great, I've been a fan for awhile now. I'd been reading up on Sjowall & Wahloo since you mentioned them, and was similarly struck by the wierd coincidence of the legal issues that surround the estates.

I just got my copy of the Stephen Dobyns' CHURCH OF DEAD GIRLS from the library this afternoon; plan on moving to the Saratoga series from there. Dobyn's work is vying for my attention with more recent far like Denis Johnson's NOBODY MOVE and Paul Malmont's THE CHINATOWN DEATH CLOUD PERIL, and the upcoming Laura Lippman book.

Thanks for all the rec's! I plan on working my way through as many as I can.
Enjoy! I've been tossing mysteries right and left and have turned my attention to the Booker Prize nominees.

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