Crimefest 2012 highlights
With Crimefest 2012's remaining stragglers marshaling their strength before the Sunday dinner, here are some highlights of my third Crimefest, one of the most enjoyable crime festivals I've been part of:
1) Declan Burke's Absolute Zero Cool wins the Last Laugh award, for best comic crime fiction published in the U.K., besting a field that included hacks and pikers like Elmore Leonard and Carl Hiaasen.
2) Your humble blogkeeper loses the Criminal Mastermind quiz to Peter Guttridge on the crime-fiction equivalent of penalty kicks. Guttridge and I each answered fifteen questions correctly in general crime-fiction knowledge and our specialty categories. (His was Richard Stark's Parker novels; mine was Dashiell Hammett.) Guttridge won the prize of Bristol blue glass and a free pass to next year's festival because he had passed on only five questions whose answers he did not know while I passed on seven. I think, however, that my showing may be the best ever by a North American, and proof to the Brits that there's more to America than bluff good humor, rustic colonial manners, and a flair for tall stories.
3) A post-dinner discussion with Gunnar Staalesen, who agreed with a Detectives Beyond Borders commenter's suggestion that the Anders Breivik case will halt fruitful, honest discussion of immigration and integration in Norway for a generation.
4) Finding a crime writer (William Ryan) for whom Isaac Babel (Odessa Tales, Red Cavalry) is both an inspiration and a character.
5) Reunions with the delightful floating cast of authors, organizers, critics and fans who spend their vacations criss-crossing the Atlantic Ocean to attend every crime festival they can in England and America, and the addition of Alison Bruce, Laura Wilson and Stav Sherez to the cast. See you in Cleveland or Harrogate or Bristol or Albany or Long Beach or ...
© Peter Rozovsky 2012
Labels: Ali Karim, Alison Bruce, conventions, Crimefest, Crimefest 2012, Dashiell Hammett, Declan Burke, Gunnar Staalesen, Isaac Babel, Laura Wilson, Parker, Peter Guttridge, Richard Stark, Stav Sherez, William Ryan