After all the international interest in the Dartmoor Dozen Challenge obviously the next step was to have a talented guest blogger on Crime Scraps.
So I like to thank author, and panel moderator at Crime Fest, Donna Moore for giving us her choices. I have to admit she wasn't my first choice but Helena Handbasket wanted her fee paid in Euros or US dollars! So your cheque is in the post Donna. ;o)
I think it would have to be Dostoevsky's CRIME AND PUNISHMENT-alienation, despair, torment, fear and sin-add chocolate and a nice pair of shoes and that's just the perfect Friday night out.
THE AGE OF SHERLOCK HOLMES-
Well, it's got to be the man himself and probably, the story THE ADVENTURE OF THE DANCING MEN because I loved trying to work out what the little men stood for. Kept me amused for hours, although Holmes himself is often so smug that I would probably end up whacking him over the head with a meerschaum.
THE GOLDEN AGE-
I think I might be cheating here, but I'm not going to let that stop me. Although I read every single Agatha Christie and most D.L. Sayers books, when I was about 11 or 12, and loved every last one of them, today I'm not a big Golden Age fan, so my choice is the lesser known writer Norbert Davis, whose THE MOUSE IN THE MOUNTAIN was published in 1943. Doan is a chubby, harmless-looking PI who is living proof that appearances can be deceptive. In reality he's actually quite ruthless and hard-nosed. His actions and personality are what you would expect of a cynical 1940s PI. The fact that he looks like everyone's favourite uncle is something he uses to his advantage. His partner, Carstairs, is an extremely intelligent Great Dane who's so huge he should actually be a whole new species. Carstairs has never really forgiven Doan for winning him in a craps game, and gets his own back by growling every time Doan has a drink. Carstairs growls an awful lot.
Ah, this is more my thing. And there is an easy choice for me-Raymond Chandler. "It was a blonde-a blonde to make a bishop kick a hole in a stained glass window."
I love his one-liners and I'm just a little bit in love with Philip Marlowe- a wisecracking tough guy who's moral and incorruptible and Raymond Chandler said of his hero "I think he might seduce a duchess, and I am quite sure he would not spoil a virgin". I think I'd be telling Phil my name was Duchess Donna. Difficult to choose which one, but probably THE BIG SLEEP- two dangerous female characters in one book.
STEWART PAWSON'S CHARLIE PRIEST SERIES. I love the interplay between the police characters, and Charlie is a really nice bloke and a good policeman. Unlike a lot of other fictional policemen he gets on with his superiors and does his paperwork. His methods might be a little iffy sometimes but only when it's the only way to see justice done. He doesn't let the awful things he sees get him down, he's got an irreverent sense of humour, but he's quick to spot when anyone is troubled and treats them with respect and sensitivity. As a result, he's earned the respect and admiration of his peers, his superiors, and also his subordinates. He works hard and is a thorough investigator, but he is also quite gifted in the study of human nature. If I was ever in need of a policeman, it would be Charlie I would want to see at my front door. I can't choose which one -they are all good.
Gosh, tough category. I love PI novels so this is really really hard. But I'll make a decision and choose Ken Bruen's Jack Taylor. The choice of which in the series is much easier-THE DRAMATIST. The ending made me burst embarrassingly into tears at Prestwick Airport :o) However I would recommend that anyone new to Bruen start at the beginning with THE GUARDS. And if you like irreverent policemen then his Brant series is also highly recommended. Brant is the anti- Charlie Priest. He's disgusting brash, insulting, sexist, everything-ist. He doesn't just bend the law, he stomps all over it with hobnail boots. He's great fun to read about, proabaly less fun to meet in person. I'd definitely want him on my side in a crisis though.
[Great stuff Donna, to be continued]