I love the Golden Age of Crime

No, I don't mean there was a time when everyone was going around killing everyone on a whim (although that sounds a bit like now if you believe everything you see and hear in the media). I mean the Golden Age of Crime novels, written mainly between 1930 and 1960.

When people ask me what I like reading, up crop a few of my old favourites which nestle in the bookcases in my office and are well thumbed indeed.

" The Moving Toyshop" by Edmund Crispin and "The Silk Stocking Murders" by Anthony Berkely are fantastic and fun as well as being good mysteries. Then, of course, there is the great Agatha Christie, and on the American side the wonderful Raymond Chandler. My favourite read is anything that has a puzzle to solve, some interesting characters and a fast-paced dialogue.

Oh, and I love Georges Simenon especially Maigret, you're there right with him. Now that's what I like.


Martin Edwards said…
Pauline, if you get the chance, check out a really obscure Golden Age writer, Rupert Penny. His books are mostly hard to find, but great fun.

As for Simenon, he was the subject of a study, 'The Art of Simenon' by Thomas Narcejac, one half of the Boileau-Narcejac duo who wrote the book on which 'Vertigo' and 'Les Diaboliques' are based. Very good, though very different from Crispin, the wonderful Berkeley, and Penny.
Xavier said…
Have you tried John Dickson Carr? He was a great friend of Crispin's and a strong influence on him.
Pauline Rowson said…
Right, so now I've got Rupert Penny and John Dickson Carr to find and read. I have heard of the latter and think I might have read him a lifetime ago, but thanks, I'll give them a whirl.
Juliet said…
Did you listen to the R4 adaptation of The Blue Room this week? You can listen to it here until next Monday: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/arts/afternoon_play.shtml
Pauline Rowson said…
Thanks, Juliet. I'll try and catch it. Just posted another favourite golden age of crime writer on the blog.
john morris said…
I love the Golden Age too, and I don't mean to be a wet blanket, but you haven't got it right. The Golden Age refers to the period roughly 1920-1940, and is characterized by a certain style of detective-story construction, i.e., highly artificial, "puzzle"-oriented stories. Simenon and Chandler would not qualify. John Dickson Carr, on the other hand, is the best of the Golden Age -- I envy you coming to him for the first time.



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