Talking About Detective Fiction
by P.D. James
If you are interested in learning about detective fiction this is a good place to start. You may have to go no further. P. D. James, whose novels I have enjoyed reading, has written an informative, if not comprehensive, short book about detective fiction. Starting with references to the earliest examples of the genre in books like Charles Dicken's Bleak House, she discusses writers and their works including Conan Doyle, Dorothy Sayers, Agatha Christie, Dashiell Hammett and others. She discusses detective fiction as social history, the stylistic components of the genre, her own process of writing, the reaction of critics, and what she considers the renewal of detective fiction in recent years. This is a book for both lovers of detective fiction and good writing.
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