Monday, February 11, 2008

Fred fest

Euro Crime is marking the UK release of Fred Vargas' latest novel, This Night's Foul Work, with a roundup of everything the Euro Crime stable of reviewers has had to say about the Vargases translated into English to date. That's eleven reviews of five novels by five reviewers, unless I've lost count (plus a kind heads-up about my interview with Vargas' translator, Sian Reynolds).

I noticed two comments in particular: Maxine Clarke's on Seeking Whom He May Devour ("I've never read a book quite like this one") and Fiona Walker's on Have Mercy On Us All ("I can guarantee it's like nothing you've read before").

I noted those remarks with interest because I wrote about my own first Vargas novel, Wash This Blood Clean From My Hand, that "I have never read an opening chapter like this before in a crime novel." Now, if that many people think Vargas is original, she's original.

© Peter Rozovsky 2008

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Blogger Karen (Euro Crime) said...

Many thanks Peter for mentioning the Vargasfest. There are now 12 Vargas reviews in the archive, 7 of which were added yesterday.

February 11, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

It would be nice to think that those reviews might get someone to try Vargas for the first time. We blog reviewers are real people, after all, not like those stuffy folks in the mainstream media.

I remember that I hestitated to try Vargas at first, precisely because of the effusive critical praise. Needless to say, I'm glad I overcame my hesitation.

February 11, 2008  
Blogger Uriah Robinson said...

I hope the reviews and the praise heaped on Vargas don't give potential readers the idea that she writes "literary" crime fiction which is difficult to read.
It is the absolute opposite immensely readable and easy to understand even by retired dentists.;)
The books have a charm and style all of their own, and you just don't want to reach the end.

February 11, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Rest easy, Uriah! I think the Euro Crime reviewers' enthusiasm will be contagious. And I'm happy to show my discussions of Vargas to anyone in need of additional enthusiasm.

I, too, would fail to understand any suggestion that Vargas is difficult to read.

February 11, 2008  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Uh, re your post, is that "great minds think alike" or a singular lack of imagination and individuality on our part?


February 12, 2008  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Very much the former, or something close to it. I found it interesting that a number of readers were struck independently by Fred Vargas' singular ways of telling a crime story.

February 13, 2008  

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