Friday, December 06, 2013

A crime writer whose name is a soft drink, and an antipodean award

While I travel across the country, interesting things happen in crime fiction around the world:

If you should happen to be in Belfast next Thursday, December 12, No Alibis bookshop will present

INTERNATIONAL CRIME FICTION RESEARCH 
State, Crime and Investigation in Kondor Vilmos’ Crime Fiction 
Dr Kálai Sándor, University Debrecen. Introduction by Dr Andrew Pepper, School of English, QUB h, 5-7. University Square, House 11, Room 101 Refreshments provided.
I wonder what Dr. Pepper's students call him. And I suspect that Dr. Andrew Pepper is also crime novelist Andrew Pepper.
*
Down in the Antipodes, Paul Thomas has won the Ngaio Marsh Award for his novel Death on Demand.  I'd read Thomas' Guerrilla Season years ago and found the humor annoyingly wacky and obtrusive. But Thomas has chops, and I said back then that
" ... slowly I began to realize that damn, this man knows how to tell a story. I’ll be reading more of this guy and, without knowing anything about his body of work, I’d bet Paul Thomas could write a first-rate, not necessarily comic thriller if he set his mind to it."
Asked recently to name his favorite hero and favorite villain from crime fiction, Thomas chose Raymond Chandler's Philip Marlowe and, for the bad guy, P.G. Wodehouse's Roderick Spode, leader of the Black Shorts. I note Thomas' predilection for characters whose creators attended Dulwich College.  And I think the time has arrived for me to read more of this guy.

© Peter Rozovsky 2013

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8 Comments:

Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Peter

I can vouch for the fact that Andrew is a great guy and a terrific crime writer. Woefully underappreciated in Ireland and the UK. His Bow St Runner series is crying out for a TV adaptation.

December 07, 2013  
Blogger Kelly Robinson said...

Spode is a great pick, but it's Aunt Agatha that has an entry in the Oxford Book of Villains.

December 07, 2013  
Blogger Gerard Brennan said...

Andrew is also my PhD supervisor.

I call him Andrew.

If he wanted me to, I'd call him Dr Pepper. I'd even do my best to hold a straight face.

gb

December 07, 2013  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Adrian, I'm going to take that as a recommendation, perhaps to be looked for later this week at Book 'Em Mysteries in South Pasadena. I already know he's a great guy ("Great guy," eh? I can tell you've spent lots of time in America.) Anyhow, I was saying that I know he's a top bloke, as he was part of an enjoyable dinner outing in Bristol this past spring that consisted of me and a lot of Irish crime writers.

December 08, 2013  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Ha! I've never thought of Bertie's scaly aunts as villains. Nemeses, maybe.

I should add that I was introduced to Wodehouse by one of my aunts.

December 08, 2013  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Gerard, I wondered how widely consumed Dr. Pepper is in Ireland and the UK. God grant your supervisor patience to bear all the lame jokes.

December 08, 2013  
Blogger Gerard Brennan said...

It's not as popular as Coke or Pepsi, but it's pretty well known. Mostly thanks to a bunch of "What's the worst that can happen?" TV ads that played quite frequently a few years back. I suspect (because of the accents) you might have seen the same ads. Like the one with the kid wrestling with his girlfriend's dad.

I think it tastes very similar to fizzy (soda) dandelion and burdock. Maybe it's a descendant?

gb

December 08, 2013  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

I've never tasted burdock. Or dandelion, for that matter. But I shall try to do so as soon as the opportunity presents itself.

December 08, 2013  

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