Books received and a question for readers
The former is of interest here for at least two reasons: its setting (Botswana) and its title, which comes from The Merchant of Venice. This adds Stanley, who are really the team of Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip, to that roster of crime writers who take titles or other cues from Shakespeare, a subject of occasional interest in this space.
How the Dead Live is part of a recent noirish turn to my crime-fiction experience. First came the delightful whirl of NoirCon 2008, and then came this new edition of Raymond's book, courtesy of Serpent's Tail. Raymond is revered as among the darkest of dark British crime writers, and the novel's opening plays nicely into a subject about which I've been thinking recently: humor in noir. Here's that opening:
"`The most extraordinary feature that psychopaths present,' the Home Office lecturer was saying, `is the painstaking effort they make to copy normal people.' He looked happily at us. `They make a close study of us — you realize that.'"
I suspect more than one reader will smile at that "He looked happily at us."
How about you, readers? Tell me about some of the grimmer or at least more unexpected places where you've found humor in your crime reading.
© Peter Rozovsky 2008
African crime fiction
Comic crime fiction