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Calling enthusiasts of crime fiction!

 
 
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 09:00 pm
I lied! I don't have sixty soho crime books, what a brat. I see I have exaggerated, I glom onto those since I recognize the book bindings from a distance... but didn't keep them all.

Ok, in no order (I'll do that later for my own amusement):
Geez, I should reread some of these..


Death of a Red Heroine, by Qiu Xiaolong; Anthony Award Winner
Detective Inspector Huss, by Helene Tursten; Sweden's Prime Suspect.
High Crimes, by John Westermann (reviewed as east coast Wambaugh)
Chain of Evidence, by Garry Disher; set in Australia. I think I had qualms on this one, but that's only a wisp.
Exit Wounds, John Westermann
The False Inspector Dew, by Peter Lovesey. NYT book review loved it, and Lovesey is the only Soho author I remember actively disliking.
Upon a Dark Night, by Peter Lovesey - clearly ordered at the same time
The Hollow-Eyed Angel, Janwillem van de Wetering. Quoting, "He is doing what Simenon might have done if Albert Camus had sublet his skull." by John Leonard; Janwillem van de Wetering wrote police procedurals involving Grijpsta and deGere; I think I liked all of them.
Ooooh, here's one:
Slicky Boys, by Martin Limon. Set in Korea.
Jade Lady Burning, by Martin Limon
Death of a Nationalist, by Rebecca Pawel; a Carlos Tehada Alonso y Leo Investigation set in Spain.
The Torso, by Helene Tursten; an Inspector Irene Huss Investigation
Moghul Buffet, by Cheryl Bernard, set in Peshawar
Death in Autumn, by Magdalena Nabb; a Marshal Guarnaccia investigation; set in Florence.
Death of a Dutchman, same as above.

Ah, this is the book that got to me.. not, I don't think, the one mentioned earlier as a wisp. Not that I say not to read it, or the other one either.
Hush, It's a Game, by Patricia Carlon, Australian crime writer.
The Souvenir, by Patricia Carlon
Crime of Silence, by Patricia Carlon
Death by Demonstration, by Patricia Carlon
The Unquiet Night, by Patricia Carlon
She is very well reviewed.


Break for a typing rest.
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 09:06 pm
@ossobuco,
Quote:
Break for a typing rest

Smile
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 09:11 pm
@msolga,
I know, I'm full of it, lots of opinions, which I'm trying not to be rampant on except re positive, hard, you know, but this discussion is quite a pleasure.
msolga
 
  2  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 09:16 pm
@ossobuco,
No, no, no!
I don't think you're "full of it" at all, osso.

I was smiling at your obvious enjoyment & commitment to such a big task!
I'm not at all surprised a break was required. Smile

Go for it.
I'm enjoying reading.
Also enjoying people's conversations with each other about favourite authors, the pros & cons of various forms of crime writing. etc....
I love book talk!
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 09:38 pm
Carry on -
The Money Lovers, by Timothy Watts.
Stephen Solomita said Watts is Elmore Leonard with a nasty attitude, per quote on the back cover. Alas, I don't remember this book. Of course I know Leonard and also his son, Peter, who is also a sharp writer.

Moving along,
Murder in the Marais, by Cara Black; an Aimee Leduc investigation.
Stonekiller, by J. Robert Janes, a Jean-Louis St-Cry and Kermann Kohler Investigation.. Set in the Dordogne in July 1942.
Mannequin, by J. Robert Janes, see above.
Sandman, by J. Robert Janes, see above, set in Paris.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 09:56 pm
Carry on -
The Money Lovers, by Timothy Watts.
Stephen Solomita said Watts is Elmore Leonard with a nasty attitude, per quote on the back cover. Alas, I don't remember this book. Of course I know Leonard and also his son, Peter, who is also a sharp writer.

Moving along,
Murder in the Marais, by Cara Black; an Aimee Leduc investigation.
Stonekiller, by J. Robert Janes, a Jean-Louis St-Cry and Kermann Kohler Investigation.. Set in the Dordogne in July 1942.
Mannequin, by J. Robert Janes, see above.
Sandman, by J. Robert Janes, see above, set in Paris.

Back to Martin Limon and Buddha's Money, autographed. Oh, wait, is this guy local? A writer I like, if so.
Going back to Cara Black -
Murder in the Sentier, by Cara Black. Paris troubled.
Zoo Station, by David Downing. Berlin in 1939.
Sweet Deal, by John Westermann, cop stuff.
Thirty-three Teeth by Colin Cotterill; set in Laos.

Ok, done for now. My take on soho books is that the writers can write. Responses will vary.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 10:03 pm
@msolga,
I'm trying not to be a meanie. I forego Patterson, for example, a pattern writer who helps others do the same.

My old boss turned out to be a medical thriller writer in his spare time, of not extensive repute, but I did buy one of his in a grocery store.. Some of us were the characters, or part of the characters. Too bad, I'll never tell.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 10:06 pm
Sorry for the double.
0 Replies
 
Lustig Andrei
 
  2  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 10:31 pm
Great thread, msolga! I haven't been patient enough to plod through all of it (yet), just the first three pages or so, so I might say something that's repetitious. If that happens, please forgive me.

First, I completely agree with everything that Roberta and Setanta recommended at the start of this thread. My faves as well. Ditto re: Raymon Chandler. Chandler and Dashiell Hammet (The Thin Man; The Maltese Falcon, a few others) virtually invented the American hard-boiled detective story. They were also very fine writers and would have been recognized as such no matter what genre they chose to practice.

I have only recently discovered an American writer of extreme talent named Scott Turow. I can't recommend his Presumed Innocent or Reversible Errors or Ordinary Heroes too highly. Outstanding. I like Turow for much the same reasons that I admire the British author P.D. James. In both cases, these are writers who create real and totally believable characters, complete with back-stories, moral failings and psychological flaws that make these fictional characters absolutely real. Furthermore, they apply this excellent tecchnique even to relatively minor characters so that the bartender (who has no connection to the crime under investigation) becomes as real and interesting as the protagonist and the suspects.

Turow is a lawyer. Much of his crime fiction is courtroom drama. But he sets an excellent example of how courtroom drama can be done realistically, believably and interestingly, unlike the pitiful plodding of a hack like John Grisham. Eschew Grisham. The man cannot write. Damn it! Why is he a best-seller? If he were a student in any composition course I taught, he might get a very low passing mark, perhaps not even that. I certainly would not consider his pedestrian style publishable. In a word, his prose sucks.

More, if you wish, later. Laughing

ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 10:39 pm
@Lustig Andrei,
I think the person who gets me, at least partially, is Calamity Jane. Well, of course we will differ and spat. She has a nice wide eye.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Feb, 2012 10:50 pm
@Lustig Andrei,
Turow, I liked. Grisham, I shunned for years, maybe decades, and read a book I didn't mind. None of them interest me very much.
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Feb, 2012 01:03 am
@Lustig Andrei,
Thanks for such a thoughtful post, Andrew.
Interesting, very interesting!
I will definitely put Scott Turow on my list.
Two endorsements in the space of minutes! Smile

Quote:
More, if you wish, later. Laughing

Oh absolutely!
I'm all ears ... or eyes, given that this is the internet.
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Feb, 2012 01:29 am
I was thinking ....
I'm much more familiar with crime/thrillers/private detectives/police investigations via film than through writing. (Obviously.)

To me, the closest to perfect in this genre (in film) would have to be Chinatown.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinatown_%281974_film%29



Great script - many layers to what takes place, fascinating characters (many with a "past"), complex characters you can really empathise with - feel for, political intrigue & corruption, fantastic evocation of time & place & a conclusion that stops you in your tracks. And stays with you, long after the experience.

What more could a film goer (or reader of crime fiction) ask for?

Another film of the genre I really liked was Cutter's Way. Loved it for similar reasons. But Chinatown is almost in a class of its own.

-
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Feb, 2012 01:36 am
updated list:

Arthur Conan Doyle
Ngaio Marsh
Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo
Dorothy Sayers
P. D. James
Sue Grafton
Raymond Chandler
Phillip Kerr
Barbara Nadel
Jacqueline Winspear
Donna Leon
Henning Mankell
Agatha Christie
Sara Paretsky
China Mieville
Louise Penny.
Ian Rankin
Henning Mankell
Gianrico Carofiglio
Janwillem van de Wetering
Nicolas Freeling
Jakob Arjouni
Ed McBain
Walter Mosley
Donald Westlake
John Lescroart
John Dunning
Luiz Alfredo Garcia-Roza
RNatsuo Kirino
Robert Wilson
Leonardo Padura
Georges Simenon
Donald Westlake
Robert B Parker
Ellis Peters
Lee Child
James Patterson
Ariana Franklin
John D. MacDonald
William Murray
Dick Francis
Patricia Highsmith
Frank Sch├Ątzing
Jamie Freveletti
Scott Turow
*Eschew Grisham. (The man cannot write. Damn it!) Wink
Irishk
 
  2  
Reply Tue 7 Feb, 2012 08:51 am
@msolga,
Quote:
...fascinating characters (many with a "past"), complex characters you can really empathise with - feel for...
As my reading time becomes more limited, the more I realize how important this becomes. I have to at least 'care' about a novel's characters, and actually liking them is a bonus. Every now and then I find I like them so much I don't want the book to end and I love it when that happens. Probably why I gravitate to longish books and if there's historical content, I'm pretty much in reader heaven.
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Tue 7 Feb, 2012 09:18 am
Grisham does suck.

I forgot to explain why Cadfeal reminded me of the Mistress of the art of death. Her stories are set in 12th century England, in the reign of Henry II.
0 Replies
 
Sturgis
 
  2  
Reply Tue 7 Feb, 2012 10:13 am
@msolga,
Quote:
updated list:


Dick Francis
*Eschew Grisham. (The man cannot write. Damn it!)




Forgot about Francis, I had read his books early on, then for some reason stopped.

As to Grisham, he did write at least one book that was acceptable. Perhaps what helped was that it wasn't a piece of fiction, rather a book written about a real legal situation and the people involved, that being The Innocent Man: Murder & Injustice In A Small Town. Said to be his first venture into nonfiction it tells the story of a man, Ron Williamson, who is accused and convicted of a murder, sent to death row and through a series of events is eventually found to be innocent, which he had always said he was. It turned out another man had actually done the crime, shoddy police work had kept that from being discovered as it was easier to go after a man who was mentally unstable at times and living in a small town where people are guilty before they are born.

Grisham did well in that book, both in telling the story and in explaining why the death penalty as such is wrong. After reading it, I felt Grisham could and would do better to the literary world if he'd stick with non-fiction.


Walter Hinteler
 
  2  
Reply Tue 7 Feb, 2012 10:55 am
@msolga,
I would add
- David Ellis (a Chicago attorney, he writes mostly courtroom thrillers),
- Anne Holt (Norway's best-selling female crime writer),
and of course
- Toni Hillermann (Navajo Tribal Police mystery novels)

I suppose, for Aussies, I should leave out kiwi Dame Ngaio Marsh Wink
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Feb, 2012 10:57 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Wasn't she a Kiwi?
0 Replies
 
panzade
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Feb, 2012 12:41 pm
@Sturgis,
Agreed: Grisham's non-fiction work far surpassed his fiction.
0 Replies
 
 

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