Murder Mystery Authors

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gatorman
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Murder Mystery Authors

Post by gatorman » Sun Apr 10, 2011 4:41 am

When I was a kid, I read all the Sherlock Holmes murder mysteries, and in my twenties read most of the Nero Wolfe series by Rex Stout. Then, for some reason unknown, dropped the genre, although I really love a good murder mystery. Recently, I was in the book store, saw a reissue of Fer-de-Lance and The League of Frightened Men in a single volume, bought it, and have been really enjoying re-reading them. So, here's my question- Tell me who your favorite modern murder mystery author is, and why you like him or her. I'm looking for some good series to read.

Thanks,
gatorman

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Post by Sconie » Sun Apr 10, 2011 7:00 am

Not so much a "murder mystery" as a crime series---one centered on a Swedish police investigator----that I have gotten into and have absolutely enjoyed is the Inspector Kurt Wallender series by Henning Mankell. Actually, although he is not quite as well known in the U.S., Mankell is among the best selling authors in the world.

http://www.amazon.com/Henning-Mankell-B ... 8XFOUUP6UH

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Post by MP173 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:01 am

Lawrence Block has written a number of books. Currently I am reading Hope Dies which is based on his charactor Scudder, a former NYC cop, turned private detective. Excellent.

Michael Connolly's Harry Bosch series is great, as is John Sandiford's "Davenport" series. Both are cop series, but involve homicide cops.

For a slightly different perspective, Jonathan Kellerman's "Alex Delaware" series is based on a phycologist who consults to LAPD and helps solve murders. There are probably 15-20 of these books.

Ed

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Post by ncaraway » Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:18 am

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Post by woof755 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:20 am

James Lee Burke, murder mysteries with a New Orleans flare. He creates the most amazing "bad guys."
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Post by D Newton » Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:24 am

+1 for Burke.
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Post by filmtheory » Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:30 am

Erle Stanley Gardner's Perry Mason mysteries from the 30s to the 60s are really fun and addictive. He wrote 80 or so of them.

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Re: Murder Mystery Authors

Post by frugalhen » Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:53 am

gatorman wrote:When I was a kid, I read all the Sherlock Holmes murder mysteries, and in my twenties read most of the Nero Wolfe series by Rex Stout. Then, for some reason unknown, dropped the genre, although I really love a good murder mystery. Recently, I was in the book store, saw a reissue of Fer-de-Lance and The League of Frightened Men in a single volume, bought it, and have been really enjoying re-reading them. So, here's my question- Tell me who your favorite modern murder mystery author is, and why you like him or her. I'm looking for some good series to read.

Thanks,
gatorman
Gatorman, I agree completely about the Nero Wolfe books! The a and e series was great as well on DVD!
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Post by Sam I Am » Sun Apr 10, 2011 9:19 am

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Post by crow » Sun Apr 10, 2011 9:22 am

I second the Michael Connolly and John Sandford books. My other favorites are Jeffrey Deaver's Lincoln Rhyme series, anything by Lee Child or Carrol O'Connell. Out of all of them, the Lee Child and Carrol O'Connel are my favorites.
I read a lot, 4 books or so a week on average, so I'm looking forward to trying some of the other's favorites listed here.

Crow

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Ngaio Marsh

Post by crefwatch » Sun Apr 10, 2011 11:16 am

I don't know if they're great literature, but I particularly enjoyed those of her old-fashioned detective novels that were also "theater novels". I think she was active in amateur theater for part of her life. Hers is a Colonial sub-genre of English Imperial novels.

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Post by Valuethinker » Sun Apr 10, 2011 11:32 am

ncaraway wrote:I've been wanting to read the Wallander series having seen Kenneth Branagh's portrayal on PBS. Apparently they're quite popular because I've been on the waiting list for one at my local library for a while now.

I enjoyed Raymond Chandler's Philip Marlow stories. They're mostly set in the 40s. The language is colorful and I found them to be fun reads.
It's a fair bet if a writer gets into Library of the Americas and/ or Everyman's then they have ceased just to be 'genre' and become 'literature'.

And so Dashiel Hammett and Raymond Chandler.

Chandler was a wordsmith. He had grown up in England, and insisted that he was 'learning the language with each novel'. The language is precious and special, and ditto the wise and cynical voice of Philip Marlowe, detective struggling against the great dark forces of society and human nature.

They are uneven. His plots are generally not his strongest point, and many of his characters are quite flat.

But the books are the prototype of 1,000 noir detectives who passed down the gritty streets after him. They chronicle the dark side of California at a time of profound change. And they preserve that time and place, forever, in our minds and our culture.

Although Humphrey Bogart didn't quite capture the Marlowe character, (arguably Robert Mitchum did just as well), his voice is now unforgettable as Marlowe.

BBC Radio 4 has been doing a series of dramatizations of each of the novels-- copyright and all, probably not downloadable in the USA, alas.

On Wallender, he is the logical Swedish inheritor of Philip Marlowe. As such, his novels are more in the Anglo-Saxon tradition, than in the latest wave of Scandinavian crime (which are darker, and more twisted ie Stieg Larsson).

Again, Wallender is a hero for all times. A flawed man, bumbling his way towards the elusive truth in his novels. But propelled, always by his desire for justice. And resolute and bulldogish in it.

The Swedish TV series of Wallender, by the way, is apparently much better than the BBC/ Branagh one.

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Post by Christine_NM » Sun Apr 10, 2011 12:08 pm

Ruth Rendell aka Barbara Vine - because they are the best :D

Also:

P. D. James - for plot complexity
Elizabeth George - for characters (Lynley/Havers series)
Deborah Crombie - for location and characters (Kincaid/James series)

Specific book:

Daughter of Time, by Josephine Tey. Don't know the rest of her work enough to list her as favorite author.
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Post by chaz » Sun Apr 10, 2011 12:56 pm

Elizabeth George is terrific.
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Post by wishin&hopin » Sun Apr 10, 2011 1:49 pm

I'd highly recommend British writer Robert Goddard. He's written about two dozen books and usually releases a new one annually. His books definitely fall into the "can't put it down" category, with numerous twists.

One difference from the mystery series you mention is that each of Goddard's books is a distinct mystery -- there's no central detective character. However, three books ("Into the Blue," "Out of the Sun" and "Never Go Back") feature the same middle-aged protagonist, Harry Barnett.

I'd start with "Caught in the Light," the best one I've read. I suspect you'll eagerly pick up the rest after that. Skip "Set in Stone" altogether -- it's the only clunker I've encountered so far.

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Post by gkaplan » Sun Apr 10, 2011 2:51 pm

You might try Ngaio Marsh if you like old-fashion British mysteries. She's better than Agatha Christie, in my opinion.
Gordon

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Post by VictoriaF » Sun Apr 10, 2011 2:58 pm

gkaplan wrote:You might try Ngaio Marsh if you like old-fashion British mysteries. She's better than Agatha Christie, in my opinion.
This is what crefwatch has suggested above. I had not heard her name before and had to look her up. She sounds interesting. Thank you for the confirmation,

Victoria
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Post by gkaplan » Sun Apr 10, 2011 3:04 pm

Victoria, I apologize. I overlooked the subject in crefwatch's post. (I generally don't read the subjects in add-on posts to threads, because usually there aren't any.)

(Edited to delete unwarranted apostrophe.)
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Post by steve roy » Sun Apr 10, 2011 3:36 pm

Let me be the third to endorse Chandler. His prose gets up and walks.

Read the books in the order written. "The Big Sleep," "Farewell My Lovely," "The High Window," "The Lady in the Lake," "The Little Sister," and "The Long Goodbye."

For my money, "The Little Sister" has some of the best prose although the plot creaks (which Chandler himself admitted.) "The Long Goodbye" is the longest and weightiest of his books.

Chandler wrote a final novel "Playback," which is the most lacklustre of the group.

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Post by Urechis » Sun Apr 10, 2011 4:51 pm

The Icelandic author, Arnaldur Indridason, is also good. Similar to Henning Mankell. His books are somewhat dark police-procedural novels. Like Mankell's character Indridason's detective has a dysfunctional family and lots of baggage from the past.

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Post by Chuck T » Sun Apr 10, 2011 6:34 pm

My wife is a big fan of Michael Connelly, Lee Child and Stuart Woods. I enjoy Jack Higgins and John Sandford. I used to read all the Robert Ludlum spy novels I could find.
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Post by pitt76 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 7:22 pm

Harlan Coben has 20 great mystery books out. Ten are from the Myron Bolitor series and should be read in order, The other ten are stand alones. I also concur with Michael Connelly's 22 books, They involve the Harry Bosch series and the Lincoln lawyer series as well as several stand alones. A great series of historical murder mysteries are the Gaslight Mysteries series by Victoria Thompson which take place in New York City in the 1890's and are great whodunits. They are well written and bring in a lot of period history. I have also read all of the 20 some books of the Butch Karp series by Robert K. Tanenbaum which is basically the Law and Order TV show in book form , half cops and half courtroom drama. His books are ghost written , however, but still a good series.

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Post by House Blend » Sun Apr 10, 2011 7:33 pm

steve roy wrote:Let me be the third to endorse Chandler. His prose gets up and walks.

Read the books in the order written. "The Big Sleep," "Farewell My Lovely," "The High Window," "The Lady in the Lake," "The Little Sister," and "The Long Goodbye."

For my money, "The Little Sister" has some of the best prose although the plot creaks (which Chandler himself admitted.) "The Long Goodbye" is the longest and weightiest of his books.

Chandler wrote a final novel "Playback," which is the most lacklustre of the group.
Don't forget the short stories, some of which you can find collected in paperbacks.
In the opening paragraph of Red Wind, Raymond Chandler wrote:There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands' necks. Anything can happen. You can even get a full glass of beer at a cocktail lounge.

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Post by VictoriaF » Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:21 pm

Somebody should write a Bogleheads murder mystery. How about something like this?

A fictional poster NewHeir asks for an advice for dealing with his recent inheritance. Several regulars offer their suggestions, but they also ask some clarifying questions, to which NewHeir thoroughly responds. An active discussion goes on for a few weeks, at the end of which NewHeir thanks everybody for helping him to implement the plan.

Then NewHeir abruptly stops posting. A few weeks pass, and a new poster SevenSpades writes that NewHeir has been murdered, and all his money were withdrawn and disappeared. SevenSpades suspects that NewHeir was traced and blackmailed by somebody who met him in this Forum. Then SevenSpades disappears too, which was to be expected.

Alex Frakt notes that NewHeir and SevenSpades were posting from the same IP address block associated with Chicago. Are they the same person playing games with the Forum? Is there any truth to SevenSpades's story?

A group of Bogleheads decides to investigate this, and they organize a trip to Chicago. Morningstar makes an office available for Bogleheads' meetings and offers to cover some expenses in order to preserve a safe image of online financial forums.

But strange things start happening in Chicago...

Victoria
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Post by nisiprius » Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:33 pm

Another vote for Elizabeth George, the only writer my wife and I still buy in hardbound as each new one comes out.

Not sure where to set the boundaries of the genre. I love the Sherlock Holmes stories. If we're insisting on strict "whodunnit" puzzle-solution mysteries than I guess "Ed McBain's" 87th Precinct police procedurals, Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo's police procedurals, William Lashner's "Victor Carl" books wouldn't really qualify. All the older Robert Parker novels--broadly, those with literary-allusion titles--are great, the newer one's ain't bad. John D. MacDonald!
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Post by pitt76 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 9:56 pm

I thought of another series you may like. The 87th precinct series by Ed Mcbain. I believe there are 56 of these novels about NYPD homicide detectives by a very prolific writer.

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Post by novastepp » Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:07 am

Jeffery Deaver. You will love his novels; hands down.
Pick up any that feature Lincoln Rhyme: Cold Moon, Devil's Teardrop, The Fifteenth Card... all of them, great.

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Post by mhalley » Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:22 am

If you are looking for more PI type novels than true mysterys, I always enjoyed the Travis McGhee series by John D McDonald. Also the Fletch series (much better than the bad Chevy Chase movies). The Scarpetta series are good, as well as the Bones novels (very different from the TV show). The Stieg Larrsen Millenium Trilogy (the girl with the dragon tatoo, etc) are good.
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Post by Valuethinker » Mon Apr 11, 2011 2:41 am

pitt76 wrote:I thought of another series you may like. The 87th precinct series by Ed Mcbain. I believe there are 56 of these novels about NYPD homicide detectives by a very prolific writer.
McBain's style was spare-- he's not a stylist.

Characters are somewhat flat. Carella did not really gel for me.

*but* the novels have become a quite powerful social picture of New York as it evolved-- from the 60s through to the 2000s. The deep and dark decline of the city into a swamp of crime, and its resurrection as a capital of money and glitz.

Neither of the TV shows which owed their heritage to McBain: Hill Street Blues, NYPD Blue, Law & Order -- ever paid a cent of royalties (AFAIK)-- there was a court case over Hill Street Blues, but McBain didn't have the resources to pursue it, I think.

But he created the scene which became those shows. Which chronicled New York in its fall and rise.

It is sad there will be no more. But we are very lucky there are so many.

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Post by Valuethinker » Mon Apr 11, 2011 2:47 am

House Blend wrote:
steve roy wrote:Let me be the third to endorse Chandler. His prose gets up and walks.

Read the books in the order written. "The Big Sleep," "Farewell My Lovely," "The High Window," "The Lady in the Lake," "The Little Sister," and "The Long Goodbye."

For my money, "The Little Sister" has some of the best prose although the plot creaks (which Chandler himself admitted.) "The Long Goodbye" is the longest and weightiest of his books.

Chandler wrote a final novel "Playback," which is the most lacklustre of the group.
Don't forget the short stories, some of which you can find collected in paperbacks.
In the opening paragraph of Red Wind, Raymond Chandler wrote:There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands' necks. Anything can happen. You can even get a full glass of beer at a cocktail lounge.
http://www.amazon.com/Raymond-Chandler- ... 0375415009

it may be they are all now back in print?

There is a whole question whether Chandler (and Joan Didion) knew what they were talking about about the Santa Anas, whether they sacrificed accuracy for literary merit, but it's a truly great piece of prose.

We (I) don't know what the reality of LA in the 1930s and 40s *was* but the reality (for me) has become what Chandler wrote.

For a vivid evocation of it, of course you have 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit'. And the peerless 'Blade Runner' which casts it into the 21st century (2020 in fact). Both films whose DNA is firmly set in Chandler. And there is 'Chinatown'.

And you have the Howard Hawks film-- The Big Sleep.

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Post by gatorking » Mon Apr 11, 2011 8:59 am

If you can find any "Sexton Blake" story books, give it a go.
http://www.sextonblake.co.uk/index.html
"Sexton Blake is one of the most written about characters in the English language. For the greater part of the 20th Century, he was a household name and a publishing phenomenon, starring in nearly five thousand fantastic stories written by over two hundred authors. This site catalogues and celebrates his daring escapades and the people who recorded them."

I particularly liked the stories by Anthony Parsons.

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Post by Jake46 » Mon Apr 11, 2011 9:13 am

One of my all time favorites is Belgian author Georges Simenon. His Inspector Maigret series is a great read. Most of his books are available in paperback.

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Post by mcblum » Mon Apr 11, 2011 10:30 am

what a great topic!!
I loved Sherlock Holmes, early. The great Raymond Chandler ,who all following, owe a debt. Agatha Christie. Later, all of Dorothy Sayers, who I liked better than Christie. All Nero Wolfe- I also liked the TV show with Maury Chaikin. John D. McDonald's Travis McGee, Jonathan Gash's Lovejoy series.Bartholamew Gill's McGarr series. The Kellermans. The great James Lee Burke and James W. Hall.
all tremendous....
Marty

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Post by Kulak » Mon Apr 11, 2011 10:55 am

Cornell Woolrich is another 'founding father' of noir like Chandler and Hammett.

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Post by gatorman » Mon Apr 11, 2011 2:40 pm

Many thanks to those who posted, you gave me lots of good ideas.
gatorman

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Post by S&L1940 » Mon Apr 11, 2011 3:29 pm

Elmore Leonard is one of the more entertaining writers today. neat capers and great characters. Google him and you will be surprised how many of his movies (both from his books and his screenplays) you have seen.

Donald Westlake, now deceased, wrote under many names and he too was known for convoluted capers - usually doomed to failure from the start. a good indication of his plotting is that several of his stories were made into classic noir tales for the screen; some by foreign directors, some more than once.

the classy mystery was being pumped out for years before all the teen vampire love stories and black ops spy capers came along. and they still hold up
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Post by chaz » Mon Apr 11, 2011 5:29 pm

VictoriaF wrote:Somebody should write a Bogleheads murder mystery. How about something like this?

A fictional poster NewHeir asks for an advice for dealing with his recent inheritance. Several regulars offer their suggestions, but they also ask some clarifying questions, to which NewHeir thoroughly responds. An active discussion goes on for a few weeks, at the end of which NewHeir thanks everybody for helping him to implement the plan.

Then NewHeir abruptly stops posting. A few weeks pass, and a new poster SevenSpades writes that NewHeir has been murdered, and all his money were withdrawn and disappeared. SevenSpades suspects that NewHeir was traced and blackmailed by somebody who met him in this Forum. Then SevenSpades disappears too, which was to be expected.

Alex Frakt notes that NewHeir and SevenSpades were posting from the same IP address block associated with Chicago. Are they the same person playing games with the Forum? Is there any truth to SevenSpades's story?

A group of Bogleheads decides to investigate this, and they organize a trip to Chicago. Morningstar makes an office available for Bogleheads' meetings and offers to cover some expenses in order to preserve a safe image of online financial forums.

But strange things start happening in Chicago...

Victoria
Title it: "The Black Swan".
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Post by Jay69 » Mon Apr 11, 2011 7:43 pm

Real murder mysteries, Ann Rule.

You have to be little twisted to read them but what heck she is good!

satori
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Post by satori » Mon Apr 11, 2011 10:59 pm

Here are some of my favorite mystery/detective authors:

-Arthur Conan Doyle
-Agatha Christie -- I think the best are the Tommy and Tuppence mysteries.
-Dorothy Sayers - Lord Peter Wimsey stories
-Carolyn Keene (I have to mention her. Her name is a pseudonym. Her character was the girl sleuth Nancy Drew, (original series started around 1930's) Nancy Drew was ahead of her time and was the role model of so many young girls.
-Elizabeth Peters - I especially like the Amanda Peabody series (turn of the 19th/20th century Egyptologist couple Amanda and Emerson Peabody face danger and adventure as they excavate amongst the pyramids and valleys of Egypt. (Author Peters has a PhD in Egyptology from U Chicago so the backdrop of her stories is well researched.
- Laurie King: I like her Mary Russell series: Mary Russell meets the great Sherlock Holmes and they solve mysteries together, and surprise (!) they eventually get married.

Finally, I've just discovered and enjoy the Arsene Lupin mystery stories written by French author Maurice LeBlanc around the beginning of the 20th century. Arsene Lupine is not the detective, he is the very very debonaire and clever criminal who escapes capture. I downloaded the stories for free via my Kindle (which I love). It's out of copyright and therefore freeee.

~Satori

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Some more mystery authors

Post by rewarren » Tue Apr 12, 2011 3:56 pm

Many good authors already mentioned -- didn't see these:

Dick Francis -- mysteries centered around horse racing
Donna Leon -- the detective is on the Venice police force
Lindsay Davis -- mysteries set in ancient Rome
Micheal Pearce -- Mamur Zapt series -- set in Cairo just before WWI

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Murder Mystery Authors

Post by John151 » Tue Apr 12, 2011 4:46 pm

I'm partial to Stuart Kaminsky's "Toby Peters" murder mysteries. Set in Hollywood in the 1940's, each novel features a different movie star--as a suspect, as a witness, or as an intended victim. The stars include Gary Cooper, Judy Garland, Mae West, John Wayne, Joan Crawford, and Groucho Marx. The detective, Toby Peters, bears more than a passing resemblance to Sam Spade, and his colorful friends and associates include a hearing-impaired landlady, a scholarly dwarf, and a muscle-bound janitor who writes poetry.

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Bruce
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Post by Bruce » Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:07 pm

Joseph Wambaugh has written some very good novels and some good non fiction works.

I enjoy his Hollywood Station series.

He has won an Edgar award from the mystery writers of America.
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Post by theron » Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:42 pm

Val McDiarmid's novels. She's a UK author, and her Tony Hill/Carol Jordan series ("Wire in the Blood", etc) are especially compelling. For something a little less grisly and slower paced, Anne Cleeves' novels set on the Shetland Islands ("Raven Black" etc) convey a nice sense of the texture of the Islands (she's a little like the Shetland's answer to Henning Mankel.) Not sure if anyone mentioned Ian Rankin's novels yet -- British mystery writer, much better known than these other two.

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Post by nonnie » Tue Apr 12, 2011 9:01 pm

I'm amazed that Robert Crais has not been mentioned. He's as good as Elmore Leonard, similar in some ways (most stories based in LA) to Michael Connelly, has two different protangonists with a very interesting interactions when they're both in the same book (and also good featuring just one of them), is exacting and detail oriented in addition to fast paced and exciting stories and is simply one of the best mystery writers I've ever read. I read 2-3 mystery novels a week from a list of about 40-50 authors.

http://www.robertcrais.com/

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Post by stratton » Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:07 am

satori wrote:-Elizabeth Peters - I especially like the Amanda Peabody series (turn of the 19th/20th century Egyptologist couple Amanda and Emerson Peabody face danger and adventure as they excavate amongst the pyramids and valleys of Egypt. (Author Peters has a PhD in Egyptology from U Chicago so the backdrop of her stories is well researched.
It's actually Amelia Peabody whom I refer to as Amelia Busybody for her meddling ways. :-)

Ellis Peters and her Brother Cafael medieval mysteries are fun.

Paul
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Post by Tony » Wed Apr 13, 2011 1:57 am

How about Arturo Perez Reverte? The Seville Communion, The Flanders Panel and The Club Dumas are all wonderful. I especially like The Seville Communion - a beautiful portrayal of that romantic Spanish city and a very interesting insight into a still-powerful force in Spain, the church.
Tony

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Post by Valuethinker » Wed Apr 13, 2011 3:14 am

satori wrote:Here are some of my favorite mystery/detective authors:

-Arthur Conan Doyle
-Agatha Christie -- I think the best are the Tommy and Tuppence mysteries.
-Dorothy Sayers - Lord Peter Wimsey stories
-Carolyn Keene (I have to mention her. Her name is a pseudonym. Her character was the girl sleuth Nancy Drew, (original series started around 1930's) Nancy Drew was ahead of her time and was the role model of so many young girls.
-Elizabeth Peters - I especially like the Amanda Peabody series (turn of the 19th/20th century Egyptologist couple Amanda and Emerson Peabody face danger and adventure as they excavate amongst the pyramids and valleys of Egypt. (Author Peters has a PhD in Egyptology from U Chicago so the backdrop of her stories is well researched.
Agatha Christie's second husband was an archaeologist 'the best of husbands. As you get older, you grow more interesting to them'. She accompanied him on digs in Egypt and Iraq, and wrote at least 2 novels based on that 'Death Comes as the End' being one of them.
Finally, I've just discovered and enjoy the Arsene Lupin mystery stories written by French author Maurice LeBlanc around the beginning of the 20th century. Arsene Lupine is not the detective, he is the very very debonaire and clever criminal who escapes capture. I downloaded the stories for free via my Kindle (which I love). It's out of copyright and therefore freeee.

~Satori
On Lupin the Victorian equivalent was the gentleman thief 'Raffles'. BBC did a very good series on him about 25 years ago: it's around in DVD at least here. And the books should still be available.

Miyazaki, the great Japanese anime (animated film) director, did a film 'Castle of Cagliostro' about a Japanese thief named Lupin, a modern version of the same character. Steven Spielberg has described the car chase in that movie as 'the greatest car chase ever filmed'. I think there was also an animated TV series on the same character.

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Post by Valuethinker » Wed Apr 13, 2011 3:15 am

Bruce wrote:Joseph Wambaugh has written some very good novels and some good non fiction works.

I enjoy his Hollywood Station series.

He has won an Edgar award from the mystery writers of America.
Wambaugh in some ways was the precursor to David Simon (Homicide, The Wire, Treme). His novels (The Blue Knight) depict an urban America of the 1970s and 80s and were famous for treating the police as (highly fallible) and human-- controversial at the time. I think he was an ex cop.

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Post by Valuethinker » Wed Apr 13, 2011 3:19 am

We are going Victorian here so let me toss in 'William Hope Hodgson' and his occult detective, Carnacki.

These are occult thrillers, not mysteries per se. Or mysteries with an occult edge.

The style is occasionally lugubrious, but the stories are gripping.

http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/h/wil ... finder.htm

In particular, as part of a series 'The Rivals of Sherlock Holmes' the BBC did a dramatisation of 'The Horse of the Invisible' which will live with me forever.

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Post by Valuethinker » Wed Apr 13, 2011 3:21 am

theron wrote:Val McDiarmid's novels. She's a UK author, and her Tony Hill/Carol Jordan series ("Wire in the Blood", etc) are especially compelling. For something a little less grisly and slower paced, Anne Cleeves' novels set on the Shetland Islands ("Raven Black" etc) convey a nice sense of the texture of the Islands (she's a little like the Shetland's answer to Henning Mankel.) Not sure if anyone mentioned Ian Rankin's novels yet -- British mystery writer, much better known than these other two.
David Peace is our James Elroy-- dark tales of the police and crime, woven into the history of modern Britain.

http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/p/dav ... y-four.htm

The 'Red Riding' novels were released as an (8 hour long?) in cinema movie, as well as a made-for-tv series.

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