The World’s Most Celebrated Sleuths Unmasked by Their Authors
Author: Otto Penzler
Pubpsher: Open Road Media
Category: Literary Collections
The origins of literature’s finest crime fighters, told by their creators themselves Their names ring out like gunshots in the dark of a back alley, crime fighters of a lost era whose heroic deeds will never be forgotten. They are men like Lew Archer, Pierre Chambrun, Flash Casey, and the Shadow. They are women like Mrs. North and the immortal Nancy Drew. These are detectives, and they are some of the only true heroes the twentieth century ever knew. In this classic volume, Otto Penzler presents essays written by the authors who created these famous characters. We learn how Ed McBain killed—and resurrected—the hero of the 87th Precinct, how international agent Quiller wrote his will, and how Dick Tracy first announced that “crime does not pay.” Some of these heroes may be more famous than others, but there is not one whom you wouldn’t like on your side in a courtroom, a shootout, or an old-fashioned barroom brawl.
Reviews of the Series: “The McFarland Companion series…has been consistently excellent, both in its choice of subjects and its quality of scholarship and writing”—Mystery Scene. Considered one of the “Queens of Crime”—along with such greats as Agatha Christie, Dorothy Sayers and Margery Allingham—Ngaio Marsh (1895–1982) was a gifted writer and a celebrated author of classic British detective fiction, as well as a successful theater director. Best known for the 32 detective novels she published between 1934 and 1982, she received the Order of the British Empire in 1948 and was made a Dame of the British Empire (DBE) in 1966. Based on years of original research by the curator of the Ngaio Marsh House in Christchurch, New Zealand, this book explores the fascinating literary world of Dame Ngaio.
This volume, which examines the special contributions of a number of women mystery writers, sheds light on this significant example of common interests in recreational reading among women and men and the reasons behind the early and continuing uncharacteristic near-equality of both sexes in this field of endeavor.
Philo Vance finds his old chum District Attorney Anthony Markham up against a bizarre series of murders inspired by children’s nursery rhymes. The first murder was apparently based on “Who Killed Cock Robin?”; it is followed by more hideous deaths referencing “Mother Goose.” Philo Vance suspects a connection to a rather more sophisticated writer.