Monday, December 31, 2012
Friday, December 28, 2012
I'm just an ordinary fellow with sharp ears and eyes who can sometimes do a problem in mental arithmetic.
—Mary Semple Scott, Crime Hound 50
|Jacket by Carl Cobbledick|
Mary Semple Scott (1873–1968) was a granddaughter of Illinois senator James Semple; her brothers Ashley and Semple Scott made the first electric bus in St. Louis. She was active in the woman's suffrage movement, was the editor of the suffrage magazine The Missouri Woman, and was a friend of American novelist Winston Churchill (not to be confused with the British prime minister of the same name). Crime Hound was her only mystery novel.
|Mary Semple Scott, |
from Mar 1904
St. Louis Republic
|Mary Semple Scott, at left, |
plays the Democratic donkey
in a skit at the 1920 Nat
Amer Woman Suffrage Assn
meeting. Library of Congress,
Prints and Photos Division.
Tuesday, December 25, 2012
Monday, December 24, 2012
Update. Part 2 of the discussion with Sichel here.
Friday, December 21, 2012
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
|Evan Hunter, NYPL|
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Monday, December 17, 2012
|Clues 28.1, 2010|
(theme issue on Chester Himes)
Monday, December 10, 2012
Saturday, December 08, 2012
Wednesday, December 05, 2012
|William Le Queux, NYPL|
Monday, December 03, 2012
Friday, November 30, 2012
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
|Evan Hunter, NYPL|
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Monday, November 26, 2012
Arcturus Crime Classics has reprinted Helen McCloy's Through a Glass, Darkly and Francis Iles's Before the Fact
• Bello (an imprint of Macmillan) has reissued Roy Vickers's The Department of Dead Ends
• Felony & Mayhem has reprinted Edmund Crispin's The Moving Toyshop
• Ramble House has an edition of Harvey J. O'Higgins's Detective Duff Unravels It
• Titan Books has reissued Sax Rohmer's The Mystery of Dr. Fu Manchu
• There are new ebook versions of Charlotte Armstrong's The Unsuspected (1947 film available on DVD as well) and Clayton Rawson's Death from a Top Hat
Note that there was a 2011 edition of Helen Eustis's The Horizontal Man in ImPress's Best Mysteries of All Time series, but this is an abridged version, and I believe this series is available only by subscription
And to recap previous HQ reissues:
• Rue Morgue Press's new editions of Manning Coles's Pray Silence (US title: A Toast to Tomorrow) and John Dickson Carr's The Judas Window and The Crooked Hinge
• Blue Dolphin Publishing's reissue of H. F. Heard's A Taste for Honey
Haycraft-Queen Out-of-Print Titles in the United States (compiled and revised by Elizabeth Foxwell)
Anderson Frederick Irving - The Book of Murder - 1930
Bailey H. C. - The Red Castle - 1932
Benson G. R. - Tracks in the Snow - 1906
Charteris Leslie [Leslie Charles Bowyer Yin] - Meet the Tiger - 1928
Coates Robert M. - Wisteria Cottage - 1948
Cole G. D. H. [G. D. H. Cole and Margaret Cole] - The Brooklyn Murders - 1923
Dane Clemence [Winifred Ashton] and Helen Simpson - Re-enter Sir John - 1932
Davis Dorothy Salisbury - A Gentle Murderer - 1951
De la Torre Lillian [Lillian McCue] - Dr. Sam Johnson, Detector - 1946
Dickson Carter [John Dickson Carr] - Lord of the Sorcerers - 1946
Dunsany Lord - The Little Tales of Smethers - 1952
Eberhart Mignon G. - The Patient in Room 18 - 1929
Ellin Stanley - Dreadful Summit - 1948
Eustis Helen - The Horizontal Man - 1946
Frome David [Zenith Jones Brown] - The Hammersmith Murders - 1930
Gardner Erle Stanley - The Case of the Sulky Girl - 1933
Halsey Harlan Page - Old Sleuth, the Detective - 1872
Hammett Dashiell - The Adventures of Sam Spade - 1944
Hart Frances Noyes - The Bellamy Trial - 1927
Hughes Dorothy B. - The So Blue Marble - 1940
King Rufus - Murder by the Clock - 1929
Lawrence Hilda - Blood Upon the Snow - 1944
Lipsky Eleazar - The People Against O’Hara - 1950
Lockridge Frances and Richard Lockridge - The Norths Meet Murder - 1940
Lustgarten Edgar - A Case to Answer - 1947
MacDonald Philip - The Rasp - 1924
MacDonald Philip - The Nursemaid Who Disappeared [aka Warrant for X] - 1938
MacHarg William and Edwin Balmer - The Achievements of Luther Trant - 1910
Marquand John P. - No Hero - 1935
Paul Elliot - The Mysterious Mickey Finn - 1939
Piper Evelyn [Merriam Modell] - The Motive - 1950
Rhode John - The Murders in Praed Street - 1928
Rhode John - The Paddington Mystery - 1925
Rice Craig - Trial by Fury - 1941
Ross Barnaby [Ellery Queen] - The Tragedy of Y - 1932
Seeley Mabel - The Listening House - 1938
Stribling T. S. - Clues of the Caribbees - 1929
Trevor Glen [James Hilton] - Murder at School [aka Was It Murder?] - 1931
Van Dine S. S. [Willard Huntington Wright] - The Benson Murder Case - 1926
Walling R. A. J. - The Fatal Five Minutes - 1932
Walsh Thomas - Nightmare in Manhattan - 1950
Waters [William Russell] - Recollections of a Detective Police Officer - 1856
Wells Carolyn - The Clue - 1909
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Monday, November 19, 2012
. . . among the things a Fella does, correct grammar is not necessarily included.South Riding (recently shown on PBS) and as the subject of her best friend Vera Brittain's book Testament of Friendship, but for one more week you can listen online to her sly short story "Why Herbert Killed His Mother" (read by Anna Massey) at BBC Radio 4 Extra. Although Holtby considered it a "very poor story" (Selected Letters of Vera Brittain and Winifred Holtby 293), it's been reprinted in at least four anthologies since it first appeared in Holtby's Truth Is Not Sober (1934; see, for example, Bad Behavior and P. G. Wodehouse's A Century of Humour). Sadly, Holtby died in 1935 at age 37 of Bright's disease.
—Winifred Holtby, "Why Herbert Killed His Mother"
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Monday, November 12, 2012
|Gleason-designed bookplate |
Jackie Gleason Collection
Wednesday, November 07, 2012
|Marie Belloc Lowndes, from|
the Evening Public Ledger,
Apr 7, 1917
Tuesday, November 06, 2012
Monday, November 05, 2012
|Theodore Roosevelt, NYPL|
Thursday, November 01, 2012
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Monday, October 29, 2012
Saturday, October 27, 2012
Introduction: From Psychical Investigation to Paranormal Detective A. B. EMRYS (emerita, University of Nebraska-Kearney). The guest editor of this Clues theme issue on paranormal mysteries introduces the issue, outlining the themes of the contributor essays and mentioning authors such as Alice and Claude Askew, Wilkie Collins, Arthur Conan Doyle, Hamlin Garland, Hüseyin Rahmi Gürpinar, Fitz-James O’Brien, Sandra West Prowell, and Ian Rankin.
What Are They? The Pseudo-Mystery Stories of Fitz-James O’Brien PETE ORFORD The works of Fitz-James O’Brien are largely forgotten. The author considers how two of O’Brien’s works resemble early detective ﬁction and assesses how the stories’ hero, Harry Escott, both conforms to and subverts the ﬁgure of the detective as presented by the bookending icons of C. Auguste Dupin and Sherlock Holmes.
Literature for the People: The Paranormal Mysteries of Hüseyin Rahmi Gürpınar ÖZGÜR ÇIÇEK (Binghamton University, SUNY) and IRMA KERTUNA-HOWISON (Beykent University, Istanbul). The authors examine Hüseyin Rahmi Gürpınar’s paranormal mysteries in the context of the modernization of the late Ottoman Empire. His popular style, distinctive from other Westernizing movements at the time, as well as his incorporation of traditional narrative techniques, reveal how Gürpınar hybridizes the Western genre of paranormal mystery in early Turkish literature.
CSΨ: Occult Detectives of the Fin de Siècle and the Interpretation of Evidence SARAH CROFTON (King's College, London). Early occult-detective ﬁction aped the familiar detective formula, playfully substituting its basis in criminalistics for psychical research. In disrupting the archetype, it draws attention to a gap traditionally elided in detective ﬁction but at the heart of occultism: that between proof in its absolute sense and the persuasive proof of a convincing story.
Aylmer Vance and the Paradox of the Paranormal OLIVER TEARLE (Loughborough University, UK). How can the ever-mysterious world of the supernatural be successfully joined with the detective story, a genre that thrives on tying up loose ends in the narrative? Through a comparison of some of the best-known ﬁctional psychical detectives and investigators, this article seeks to explore the important issues surrounding this hybrid genre.
Beyond the Border: The Author as Occult Detective in Hamlin Garland’s The Mystery of the Buried Crosses TIM PRCHAL (Oklahoma State University). Occult detectives probe ﬁctional mysteries rooted in the supernatural. In The Mystery of the Buried Crosses (1939), Hamlin Garland recounts his investigation into a real-life mystery involving spiritualism. Like the ﬁctional detectives, Garland urges readers to ponder the borders of their physical world but offers no deﬁnitive stance on supernatural intrusions.
Montana Gothic: Sandra West Prowell’s Phoebe Siegel Mysteries RACHEL SCHAFFER (Montana State University Billings). Montana author Sandra West Prowell blends gothic and paranormal elements, including mysterious mansions, ghostly sightings, and prophetic dreams, as she examines issues of social justice, particularly for women and Native Americans, and highlights Native American spirituality, all from the irreverent point of view of private investigator Phoebe Siegel.
Ghosts and Skeletons: Metaphors of Guilty History in Ian Rankin’s Rebus Series ERIN E. MacDONALD (Fanshawe College, Canada). The author examines Ian Rankin’s use of the gothic convention of the ghost in Black and Blue, Dead Souls, Set in Darkness, and “The Very Last Drop.” In these works, ghosts and skeletons are used as metaphors for Detective Inspector John Rebus’s guilt over past mistakes and for the dark past of his home city, Edinburgh.
Ghost-Seeing and Detection in Stir of Echoes MURRAY LEEDER (Carleton University, Canada). The author explores the links between the ghost story and the classical detective story, using as a case study the 1999 ﬁlm adaptation of Richard Matheson’s Stir of Echoes (1959). The author explores the relationship of the restless dead to the living as well as the investment of the detective with powers to see a secret world hidden from everyday human vision.
The Mystifying Rationale of Psychic Detection EDEN LEONE (Bowling Green State University, OH). Through an examination of the USA Network series Psych (2006–), the author discusses how the psychic detective subverts the model of rational detection as exempliﬁed by Sherlock Holmes.
Homicide and Home-icide: Exhuming Ireland’s Past in the Detective Novels of Tana French SHIRLEY PETERSON (Daemen College, NY). Tana French’s Dublin Murder Squad series features police procedurals in which homicide investigations act as a social critique of “home-cide” in the “new” Ireland spawned by the economic boom known as the Celtic Tiger. Dublin is a crime scene in which victims of its inconvenient past refuse to stay buried until justice is served.
Stephen Knight. The Mysteries of the Cities: Urban Crime Fiction in the Nineteenth Century. DANIEL STEIN
Christine A. Jackson. The Tell-Tale Art: Poe in Modern Popular Culture and Paul Meehan. Horror Noir: Where Cinema’s Dark Sisters Meet JIM MANCALL
A Land Down Under: Recent Crime Fiction and Nonﬁction from Australia STEPHEN KNIGHT
Friday, October 26, 2012
It often happens to us detectives . . . that we are the first movers in matters of great ultimate importance to individuals in particular, and the public at large (Forrester, The Female Detective 6)Due out today from the British Library (distrib. U Chicago P) is The Female Detective (1864) by Andrew Forrester (pseud. of James Redding Ware), an important work in the evolution of the fictional female detective with the title character, who uses the name Miss Gladden. This edition has a foreword by Alexander McCall Smith and an introduction by Mike Ashley. Scholars' Facsimiles and Reprints also has reissued The Female Detective with Revelations of a Lady Detective (1864, attrib. to W. S. Hayward) under the title The First Female Detectives.
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Monday, October 22, 2012
Here is Barbara Stanwyck jitterbugging and performing Russian splits in Lady of Burlesque (film adaptation of The G-String Murders).
Sunday, October 21, 2012
|Barry Nelson as |
James Bond in
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
• MWA Grand Master Helen McCloy, Through a Glass, Darkly (1950). A doppelganger means trouble for a teacher and psychiatrist Basil Willing. The New York Times deemed it one of the best mysteries of 1950. Wrote Dorothy B. Hughes about the book in the Dec. 3, 1950, Washington Post, "Not since the late Bayard Veiller's 'Bait for a Tiger' has this reader been filled with such actual fear by a printed page."
Patricia Moyes, Who Saw Her Die? (aka Many Deadly Returns, 1970). In this Edgar-nominated novel, Detective Chief Superintendent Henry Tibbett must figure out how a widow died.
• Ethel Lina White, Some Must Watch (1933). A killer preys on vulnerable women in this novel by the author of The Lady Vanishes that was adapted as Robert Siodmak's The Spiral Staircase.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
A man is uncertain if his dream of committing murder is just a dream—or reality. The film, based on "And So to Death" (1941, later repr. as "Nightmare") by Cornell Woolrich under the pseudonym of William Irish, stars Star Trek's DeForest Kelley.
Monday, October 15, 2012
Tuesday, October 09, 2012
In Eyes in the Night (1942, dir. Fred Zinnemann), Edward Arnold plays a blind detective who uncovers a Nazi plot. The film is an adaptation of The Odor of Violets (1940) by Mystery Writers of America cofounder and Grand Master Baynard Kendrick (see also the TV program Longstreet based on Kendrick's work). The follow-up film, The Hidden Eye (1945), was scripted by MWA Grand Master George Harmon Coxe.
Monday, October 08, 2012
Tuesday, October 02, 2012
Monday, October 01, 2012
|Jodie Foster in Sommersby|
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Monday, September 24, 2012
|Anna Katharine Green.|
State Halls of Fame Devoted to WritersEast Tennessee. It appears the next nominations process will open in June 2013.
Georgia. Current nominees include Mignon Ballard and Virginia Lanier.
Minnesota. Nominated writers must have links to Minnesota, either through birth or residence in the state while producing a body of work. A good candidate for nomination would be Haycraft-Queen lister Mabel Seeley.
Missouri. 2012 Quill Award inductee is Ridley Pearson.
New York. In addition to my nominations of Hunter and Green (mentioned above), another appropriate nominee would be Brewster's Rex Stout—something that the Wolfe Pack should back.
North Carolina. Elizabeth Daniels Squire was inducted in 2006 and Manly Wade Wellman in 1996.
Oklahoma. Jean Hager was inducted in 1992, Carolyn Hart in 1993, and William Bernhardt in 1997.
South Carolina. Does not appear to have a nominations process open to the public. Mickey Spillane was inducted in 2012.
Texas. Established by the Friends of the Fort Worth Public Library to recognize authors who have contributed to the literary heritage of Texas. Bill Crider was inducted in 2010.
Wisconsin Writers Wall of Fame. Sponsored by the Friends of the Milwaukee Public Library. August Derleth was inducted in 1997.
Alabama Men's Hall of Fame.
Alabama Women's Hall of Fame.
Alaska Women's Hall of Fame. Deadline for nominations: November 1, 2012.
Arizona Women's Hall of Fame.
Sunday, September 23, 2012
|Evan Hunter, NYPL.|
Friday, September 21, 2012
He settled down with his newspaper unaware that life was ebbing away in the silent darkness, so close at hand.Philandering salesman Henry Clayter has been shot dead at his door, and there is no shortage of suspects for Inspector Donald Grant. Was it Clayter's long-suffering wife, who had just informed him that she was leaving him? Was it a local tough, angry at Clayter's attempt to pick up his girlfriend? Was it a colleague obsessing over Clayter's past relationship with his wife? Or was it someone else?
—Peter Malloch, Murder of the Man Next Door 53
Malloch's brisk, workmanlike prose provides deft portraits of people who are leading lives of quiet desperation in a seemingly sleepy British neighborhood.
Malloch was just one pseudonym of Glaswegian author (and former Canadian resident) William Murdoch Duncan (1909–75). He published more than 200 novels and more than 20 novellas/short stories over the course of his career, beginning with Doctor Deals with Murder (1944); an Evening Times article of August 6, 1970, stated that he could produce a thriller in a fortnight. His series characters include Inspector (later Superintendent) Flagg, Sugar Kane (pause for groan at pun), Solo Malcolm, and Mr. Sandyman.
Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Based on the 1970 book by Doris Miles Disney, Do Not Fold, Spindle, or Mutilate features Helen Hayes, Myrna Loy, Mildred Natwick, and Sylvia Sidney as elderly women who create an alluring, fictitious dating profile as a joke and reap sinister results. Prescient in terms of today's concerns with online safety, it was the precursor to the Snoop Sisters TV series.
Monday, September 17, 2012
Library of Congress,
Prints & Photographs Div
Friday, September 14, 2012
from MN Hist Soc P
• "Gordon Parks, Ralph Ellison, and 'Invisible Man,'" which runs through October 27. It includes Parks's photographs published in Life at the time of the publication of Ellison's Invisible Man.
• "Gordon Parks: Centennial," which also runs through October 27, features Parks's work over 50 years, including a famous civil rights portrait that invokes Grant Wood's "American Gothic."
Other Parks exhibitions:
• "Gordon Parks: 100 Moments." Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, NYPL. Through December 1.
• "Gordon Parks: Crossroads." Tisch School of the Arts, NYU. Through September 25.
Thursday, September 13, 2012
Customer: I read a book in the eighties. I don't remember the author, or the title. But it was green, and it made me laugh. Do you know which one I mean?Here is a BBC Open Book piece on the book.
Campbell is now writing a sequel and invites submissions from booksellers and librarians.
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
Wednesday, September 05, 2012
Update. Television Obscurities discusses an alternative version of The New People pilot.
Tuesday, September 04, 2012
Monday, September 03, 2012
Syd Hoff: Finding Home" is on display at the Miami Beach Regional Library until October 1. Its curator, Dina Weinstein, wrote the article "Are Syd Hoff's Books Jewish?".
• Hoff's niece, Carol Edmonston, has been working on an enhanced Web site featuring his life and work. It includes his children's books, advertising, cartoons, murals, and radical works under the pseudonym A. Redfield. Hoff also published short stories in periodicals such as Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine, and Charlie Chan Mystery Magazine.
• Cartoonist Mike Lynch highlights on his blog a rather wonderful book, Collier Collects Its Wits (1941), which features self-portraits by cartoonists such as Hoff ("a citizen of the Bronx [since] 1912") and Charles Addams.
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
• The Black Tower by P. D. James (1975)
• Death at Crane's Court by Eilis Dillon (1953; new ed. from Rue Morgue P)
• Death by Request by Romilly John and K[atherine]. John (1933). Romilly was the son of painter Augustus John and the half-brother of cellist Amaryllis Fleming, half-sister of Ian Fleming.
|George Antheil, NYPL|
• An English Murder by Cyril Hare (aka Alfred Alexander Gordon Clark, 1951)
• Famous Crimes, retold by "The Prince of Criminologists," William Roughead (1935)
• The Mummy Case by Dermot Morrah (1933; review here)
• The Ticker-Tape Murder by Milton Propper (1930; review here; partially serialized in the Border City Star, parts 1, 2, 3)
• A Tomb with a View by BBC producer Lance Sieveking (1950)
And of interest to Rex Stout fans:
• Forest Fire by Stout (1934; review here)
• Mr. Cinderella by Stout (1939; better cover of U.S. ed. here; review here)
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Monday, August 27, 2012
Thursday, August 23, 2012
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Monday, August 20, 2012
|Australian explorer Robert O'Hara Burke (of Burke and Wills|
fame, NYPL). A mock coroner's inquiry in 2012
looked into the cause of their deaths in 1861.
Thursday, August 16, 2012
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
|The defender of Sweet Polly |
Purebread, on the job.
Tuesday, August 14, 2012
In this December 1954 episode of GE Theater introduced by Ronald Reagan and starring Alan Ladd and John Howard, a mystery writer faces a frame-up for murder and confinement in a mental institution. Its previous incarnation was the 1949 "Daytime Nightmare"—an episode of the radio series Box 13, also featuring Ladd.
Monday, August 13, 2012
Wednesday, August 08, 2012
Monday, August 06, 2012
The Dove Award, named for the late distinguished mystery scholar George N. Dove, recognizes contributions to the serious study of mystery and crime fiction. Past recipients include Douglas G. Greene, the late H. R. F. Keating, Catherine Ross Nickerson, and yours truly.
Wednesday, August 01, 2012
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Monday, July 30, 2012
|Edward Bulwer Lytton, NYPL.|
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
(Hat tip to PhiloBiblos)
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Monday, July 23, 2012
|Ivor Novello in |
The Lodger (1926)
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Library of Congress,
Prints & Photos Div.
• Edgar Allan Poe, "Some Words with a Mummy," "Valley of Unrest," and "The City in the Sea," April 1845. $313.
• William Faulkner, Soldiers' Pay. 1st ed. New York: Boni & Liveright, 1926. $11,875. Faulkner's first novel, with a World War I subject.
• Delightful 1969 illustration by Charles Addams of Wednesday Addams metamorphosing into a werewolf while reading The Werewolf of Paris. $4000.
• "Get into Books" illustration from 1983 by Sandra Boynton. $4000.
• "Sing Out for Books" illustration from 1965 by Hilary Knight (known as the illustrator of the Eloise series by Kay Thompson). $875.
(Hat tip to PhiloBiblos)