The Best American Mystery Stories 2004 Paperback – Oct 14 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
The eighth in Otto Penzler's popular series offers some fine writing, but mystery fans should be aware that the bulk of the entries amount to crime fiction. Out of the 20 stories from veteran bestsellers such as Stephen King and Joyce Carol Oates, as well as promising newcomers, only one—William J. Carroll Jr.'s "Height Advantage"—is a whodunit. The standout is Christopher Coake's "All Through the House," a chilling, multilayered account of a family massacre whose shifting perspectives, flashbacks and flash-forwards create a moving, painful and haunting effect that lingers long after the last page. Sherlockians will be amused and intrigued by Richard Lupoff's clever pastiche of Edgar Allan Poe's C. Auguste Dupin, "The Incident of the Impecunious Chevalier," which features a young Holmes calling on his literary ancestor to track down a certain legendary jeweled black bird. Jeffrey Robert Bowman's "Stonewalls," with its alternative explanation of the cause of Gen. Stonewall Jackson's death from friendly fire, will appeal to Civil War buffs with its gritty and compelling perspective on the barbarities of war. Fans of suspenseful and psychologically rich tales of con men and low-level crooks will enjoy this volume; devotees of Agatha Christie and other authors in the classic mystery tradition should seek satisfaction elsewhere.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Here's the eighth entry in the popular best-of series (this time the celebrity editor is DeMille, author of such bestsellers as The General's Daughter and The Lion's Gate). It includes such notables as Stephen King, Dick Lochte, and Joyce Carol Oates, who seems to be a perennial cast member. There are also several new voices, younger writers who have only begun to leave their mark on the genre. The stories cover a variety of styles and themes, but what they have in common is a writer knowing what he or she wants to say and saying it well. The book is like a sampler of modern crime fiction, spotlighting the best the genre has to offer. The veteran writers show us they still have new tricks in their bags, while the (as yet) unknowns clearly mark themselves as people to watch. This series remains a must for all mystery collections. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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