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Crime Novels: Four Classic Thrillers…
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Crime Novels: Four Classic Thrillers 1964-1969 (LOA #371): The Fiend / Doll / Run Man Run / The Tremor of Forgery (Library of America) (udgave 2023)

af Margaret Millar (Forfatter)

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In the 1960s a number of gifted writers--some at the peak of their careers, others newcomers--reimagined American crime fiction through formal experimentation and the exploration of audacious new subjects and themes. This is the second of two volumes gathering the best of their work, nine novels of astonishing variety and inventiveness that pulse with the energies of that turbulent, transformative decade. In Margaret Millar's The Fiend (1964) a nine-year-old girl disappears and a local sex offender comes under suspicion. So begins a suspenseful investigation of an apparently tranquil California suburb that will expose a hidden tangle of fear and animosity, jealousy and desperation. Ed McBain (a pen name of Evan Hunter) pioneered the multi-protagonist police procedural in his long-running series of 87th Precinct novels, set in a parallel Manhattan called Isola. Doll (1965) opens at a pitch of extreme violence and careens with breakneck speed through a tale that mixes murder, drugs, the modeling business, and psychotherapy with the everyday professionalism of McBain's harried cops. The racial paranoia of a drunken police detective in Run Man Run (1966) leads to a double murder and the relentless pursuit of the young Black college student who witnessed it. In Chester Himes's breathless narrative, New York City is a place with no safe havens for a fugitive whom no one wants to believe. In Patricia Highsmith's The Tremor of Forgery (1969) a man whose personality is disintegrating is writing a book called The Tremor of Forgery about a man whose personality is disintegrating, "like a mountain collapsing from within." Stranded unexpectedly in Tunisia, Howard Ingham struggles to hold on to himself in a strange locale, while a slightly damaged typewriter may be the only trace of a killing committed almost by accident.… (mere)
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Titel:Crime Novels: Four Classic Thrillers 1964-1969 (LOA #371): The Fiend / Doll / Run Man Run / The Tremor of Forgery (Library of America)
Forfattere:Margaret Millar (Forfatter)
Info:Library of America (2023), 950 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek, Skal læses
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Crime Novels: Four Classic Thrillers 1964-1969 (LOA #371): The Fiend / Doll / Run Man Run / The Tremor of Forgery (Library of America, 371) af Margaret Millar

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Crime Novels: Four Classic Thrillers 1964-1969 is a wonderful snapshot of how the genre was evolving during this time frame. The novels are classics and having them together in one volume takes the reader back to the late 60s. Some of my general comments here will resemble what I wrote for the volume covering 1961-1964 since they have the same goals.

Collections like this I generally rate as a whole based on their purpose rather than, for instance, a collection of stories recently written that are presented to the world for the first time. In other words, while I think about how good they are I am more concerned with how representative they are of the time period. And on that note, I think this volume succeeds very well.

I preferred this volume to the one covering the previous few years for purely personal reasons. This is the time frame during which I started reading a lot of mysteries and thrillers. The summer between 3rd and 4th grade my mother, trying to keep me from getting into (too much) trouble, challenged me to see which of us could read the stack of old, as well as the new issues we got, magazines. Ellery Queen, Michael Shayne, and Alfred Hitchcock mystery magazines. I've been a fan since and loved the shift from hardboiled to, well, more psychological, more backstory of criminals rather than always a straightforward whodunit. This collection highlights that shift very well.

I had read all of these previously but only remembered Run Man Run and The Tremor of Forgery in any detail, so revisiting all of them was great fun. Himes' work is a reflection of society still.

Some may find these novels "dated." I won't say I disagree, but any work of fiction that utilizes the society contemporary to the writing as an element in the story is going to be, by definition, dated. That is neither a positive nor a negative, to treat it as either is pointless beyond simply being a personal reason to not like it. In fact, in a collection that seeks to highlight how a genre was evolving during a time period, datedness is a positive attribute.

I would recommend this collection to any readers of crime fiction who enjoy good storytelling, these novels can each stand as an excellent example of crime fiction. For those who like to know how their favorite genre has developed over the years, this will give you a glimpse at the time when it was swinging from hardboiled private detectives to more psychologically, and sociologically, driven narratives, a trend started in the early part of the decade.

Reviewed from a copy made available by the publisher via NetGalley. ( )
  pomo58 | Aug 5, 2023 |
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In the 1960s a number of gifted writers--some at the peak of their careers, others newcomers--reimagined American crime fiction through formal experimentation and the exploration of audacious new subjects and themes. This is the second of two volumes gathering the best of their work, nine novels of astonishing variety and inventiveness that pulse with the energies of that turbulent, transformative decade. In Margaret Millar's The Fiend (1964) a nine-year-old girl disappears and a local sex offender comes under suspicion. So begins a suspenseful investigation of an apparently tranquil California suburb that will expose a hidden tangle of fear and animosity, jealousy and desperation. Ed McBain (a pen name of Evan Hunter) pioneered the multi-protagonist police procedural in his long-running series of 87th Precinct novels, set in a parallel Manhattan called Isola. Doll (1965) opens at a pitch of extreme violence and careens with breakneck speed through a tale that mixes murder, drugs, the modeling business, and psychotherapy with the everyday professionalism of McBain's harried cops. The racial paranoia of a drunken police detective in Run Man Run (1966) leads to a double murder and the relentless pursuit of the young Black college student who witnessed it. In Chester Himes's breathless narrative, New York City is a place with no safe havens for a fugitive whom no one wants to believe. In Patricia Highsmith's The Tremor of Forgery (1969) a man whose personality is disintegrating is writing a book called The Tremor of Forgery about a man whose personality is disintegrating, "like a mountain collapsing from within." Stranded unexpectedly in Tunisia, Howard Ingham struggles to hold on to himself in a strange locale, while a slightly damaged typewriter may be the only trace of a killing committed almost by accident.

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