2018 Macavity Award winner for Best Nonfiction
2018 Anthony Award nominee for Best Critical/Nonfiction Book
This book tells the story of crime fiction published during the first half of the twentieth century. The diversity of this much-loved genre is breathtaking, and so much greater than many critics have suggested. To illustrate this, the leading expert on classic crime discusses one hundred books ranging from The Hound of the Baskervilles to Strangers on a Train which highlight the entertaining plots, the literary achievements, and the social significance of vintage crime fiction. This book serves as a companion to the acclaimed British Library Crime Classics series but it tells a very diverse story. It presents the development of crime fiction—from Sherlock Holmes to the end of the golden age—in an accessible, informative and engaging style.
Readers who enjoy classic crime will make fascinating discoveries and learn about forgotten gems as well as bestselling authors. Even the most widely read connoisseurs will find books (and trivia) with which they are unfamiliar—as well as unexpected choices to debate. Classic crime is a richly varied and deeply pleasurable genre that is enjoying a world-wide renaissance as dozens of neglected novels and stories are resurrected for modern readers to enjoy. The overriding aim of this book is to provide a launch point that enables readers to embark on their own voyages of discovery.
Martin Edwards is the recipient of the CWA 2020 Diamond Dagger Award for sustained excellence in his crime writing career and his significant contribution to the genre. His most recent novel is GALLOWS COURT, the second book in the Rachel Savernake Golden Age Mystery series. His eighth and most recent Lake District Mystery is THE GIRL THEY ALL FORGOT. Martin is also a well-known crime fiction critic, and series consultant to the British Library's Crime Classics. His groundbreaking study of the genre between the wars, The Golden Age of Murder, was warmly reviewed around the world, and won the Edgar, Agatha, H.R.F. Keating and Macavity awards. His The Story of Classic Crime in 100 Books has been nominated for five awards. A well-known commentator on crime fiction, he has edited 37 anthologies and published diverse nonfiction books, including a study of homicide investigation, Urge to Kill. An expert on crime fiction history, he is archivist of both the Crime Writers' Association and the Detection Club. He was elected eighth President of the Detection Club in 2015, is current Chair of the CWA, and posts regularly to his blog, 'Do You Write Under Your Own Name?'