Monday, January 10, 2011
Rated 4 Stars
From Library Website
Copied from Library Summary:
What are we talking about and how did it all begin? -- The tenant of 221B Baker Street and the parish priest from Cobhole in Essex -- The Golden Age -- Soft-centered and hard-boiled -- Four formidable women -- Telling the story : setting, viewpoint, people -- Critics and aficionados : why some don't enjoy them and why others do -- Today and a glimpse of tomorrow.
P. D. James--one of the most widely admired writers of detective fiction at work today--gives us a personal, lively exploration of the human appetite for mystery and mayhem, and of those writers who have satisfied it. She examines the genre from top to bottom, beginning with the mysteries at the hearts of such novels as Charles Dickens's Bleak House, and bringing us into the present with such writers as Colin Dexter and Sara Paretsky. She compares British and American Golden Age mystery writing. She discusses detective fiction as social history, the stylistic components of the genre, her own process of writing, how critics have reacted over the years, and what she sees as a renewal of detective fiction--and of the detective hero--in recent years.
Rated 5 Stars
Update - finished 2/6/2011
Since I have already done Roosevelt and 1/3 of Churchill I thought it would be interesting to add Hitler to the mix as these are three of the four very powerful men who were such a strong influence on the world as it was in 1935 when I was born. I need to add Stalin to the list and at some time I probably will. I have the second Churchill - Vol II, The Lost Years on my wish list and will probably do it next month or maybe March. It's a huge shame that William Manchester was unable to complete the trilogy he planned to write because I really would love to read what he would have written about Churchill during the war years.
But for right now I have Hitler. Very interesting but not much joy. I read this book back in the 70's and I'll tell you - I made me seriously wonder about demonic possession and whether or not it was actually possible. I still wonder.