The theme for this year's offering (Perfectly Criminal, 1997, etc.) of 16 nearly-new stories from the Crime Writers' Association (the only reprint is Ruth Rendell's 1994 ``Expectations'') is historical crime. It's not exactly a novel approach, yet several of the talesGillian Linscott's Socratic dialogue, H.R.F. Keating's how-prove-it, Amy Myers's playful casting of Aphrodite as the detective investigating the murder of Adonisare notable for their originality. Though the usual British settings naturally predominateespecially WWI (Anne Perry) and II (Eileen Dewhurst, Tony Wilmot, editor Edwards) and its aftermath (Andrew Taylor)readers will also be treated to a French Renaissance intrigue (Alison White), a Victorian magician (Edward D. Hoch), a murder within the besieged city of Mafeking (Marjorie Eccles), a bold reworking of the General Strike of 1926 (Mat Coward), and a glimpse of the Healer of Galilee (Edward Marston). The biggest surprise: a holiday from the ubiquitous Middle Ages. Top marks for ingenuity go to Myers and Edwards; honors for literacy and atmosphere are shared among all comers. -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
Edward D Hoch
H R F Keating
and many more...
To add to the collection's desirability, each contributor introduces their story to the reader -- setting the scene and explaining their own inspiration.