All Norway has been in our hearts and thoughts as we've watched the events of Friday's terrorist attacks unfold, destroying the peace the country embodies, expressed so eloquently in their Nobel Peace selections, as well as the Oslo Accords.
Six translated novels by a variety of authors have been announced as being the best of 2011, in the competition for the Dagger awarded by the Crime Writers' Association.
It hasn't been my habit to use this forum for publication announcements, but I've got a new book coming out May 12 and I find I want to tell y'all about it. The title is A DROP OF THE HARD STUFF, the publisher is Mulholland Books, Little Brown's brand new imprint, and it's my seventeenth book about Matthew Scudder.
For anyone raised during the Cold War, the city of Berlin is a legendary place made even more legendary by the novels it inspired. The Spy Who Came in From the Cold, Funeral in Berlin, The Good German, and so many others have turned imaginary Berlin into as significant a place in crime writing as Chandlerian Los Angeles. This child of the Cold War certainly wasn’t going to pass up the opportunity to see it for himself when the annual meeting of AIEP was scheduled to be held there, knowing full well that time has not stood still since the Wall came down.
June 4 was one of the hottest days on record in Oklahoma City and Norman. Despite that, for most of AIEP's meetings in the Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Oklahoma, the delegates were crossing their arms against the cold. One thing for sure, the air conditioning in the new Gaylord College is incredibly efficient.
The first time I met Stuart Kaminsky was in Spain, about twenty years ago. I was new to the mystery game and basking in the warm greetings to my first novel when I was invited to attend the Semana Negra, that grand carnival held each year to celebrate the black or crime novel. Authors from around the world gathered in Madrid and got aboard the black train for the long ride to Gijon on the northern coast. The train was a special one, normally set aside for the king of Spain, with beautiful woodwork, linen-covered dining tables, and free-flowing wine.
Search the phrase Belgian crime writing on the Internet and thousands of references to Georges Simenon pop up, even though Simenon spent most of his life in France and a lengthy period in the United States. As with Agatha Christie's detective Hercule Poirot, most of us need to be reminded that Simenon was in fact born Belgian and not French. Because of the cultural connection between southern Belgium and France we also often overlook the rich culture of northern Belgium, or Flanders.