Sunday, September 10, 2006

Happy birthday, Peter Lovesey.

Peter Lovesey and I display our sartorial finery at Malice Domestic VIII in 1996.

Diamond Dagger recipient Peter Lovesey, author of numerous mysteries such as the Victorian Sergeant Cribb series, police procedurals with detective Peter Diamond, and the hilarious Bertie, Prince of Wales series, turns 70 today.

There's a Lovesey work to suit every reading taste. I personally prefer his historicals, where he balances meticulous fact with a swiftly moving plot and memorable characters, such as his masterful The False Inspector Dew (murder with Crippen overtones in 1921 on the Mauritania, which was captained by Arthur Rostron, rescuer of Titanic survivors as captain of the Carpathia). Lovesey's delicious sense of humor is showcased in works such as "The Crime of Miss Oyster Brown" and On the Edge, which was adapted as the PBS production Dead Gorgeous (bored rich woman in postwar London proposes to her friend that they kill each other's husbands). Another one not to be missed is the audio version of "The Corbett Correspondence," coauthored with Edward Marston, in which Patrick Macnee and Juliet Mills play amorous spies in an epistolary tale that features a mysterious manuscript, sinister servants named Deeck and Garbo, and various other hysterical details ("behind the erotic tapestry..."). It appears in Malice Domestic 6, which won an Audie Award in the Best Short Stories/Essays/Collections category.

Many of Lovesey's books are published by Soho Press, including The Circle (about an eccentric writers' group and a publisher who gets bumped off). To listen to my interview with Lovesey from my radio show "It's a Mystery," go here.

No comments: