Site keeper/novelist Mike Nicol writes about an e-mail exchange with the crime-fiction reviewer Gunter Blank. “I would say,” Blank wrote, according to Nicol, “that in a society like Germany, Sweden, the US, crime fiction is becoming more and more redundant.”
“I agree it has become pretty difficult finding a decent crime novel that’s not chewing up the same ol’, same ol’." Blank added. "I mean how many serial killers, people with troubled childhoods, old Nazi criminals, heists gone awry and adultery turned murder, can you invent to keep the genre fresh?"
“In turbulent or haunted societies," according to Blank, "societies that are trying to find out who they are – there are still hundreds and thousands of lives and experiences to tell."
What do you say? Is crime fiction becoming redundant in the rich world? More relevant in the developing world? Both? Neither? If it is becoming redundant, as Blank suggests, how can it become relevant again? And if crime fiction is still relevant in "turbulent or haunted societies that are trying to figure out who they are," WHY THE HELL ARE U.S. PUBLISHERS NOT BUYING UP AND PROMOTING THE BEJABBERS OUT OF CRIME WRITING FROM NORTHERN IRELAND?
Before you chuck your Stieg Larsson box sets at Blank's noggin, head over to Crime Beat, read the Nicol-Blank exchange, then feel free to comment here, there, or both. (In addition to his provocative propositions, Blank offers an impressive list of favorite and underappreciated crime writers. The man's got good taste.)
© Peter Rozovsky 2012