Re: RARA-AVIS: Canadian Hardboiled

From: Etienne Borgers (
Date: 15 Jan 2001

Being a Canadian in Canada, you certainly have a better view about what happens there for HB/Noir fiction. I however would like to add that there were Canadian writers in that field, but most of them were English-speaking "wetbacks" being published in the USA. Some of them finally took the American citizenship. With very few exceptions they rarely used Canada as background for their novels, preferring probably to be confused as American writers...(?)

Ross Mc Donald, already cited, is one case. Problem is that when I came across the cases, I never thought to make a list of it. Some I remember:
*Martin Brett- a few of his novels took place in Canada
*John Craig (close to the genre for one novel:If you want to see your wife again)
*Margaret Millar- wife of the other one- for a part of her production
*Ted Wood- series during the 80's- surely of HB inspiration from what I know (but I did not read it, as reputation is low).

Now, for the French speaking part of Canada, there is at least one that I know, a contemporary writer: Franį¯Šs Barcelo. His novels belong to several genres, but most of the time with something close to black humor. Up to now, 4 of his novels belong to the HB/Noir sphere (but lending more to Noir), and he's rather very good at it. And his plots have all Canada as background.

I'm not sure this will help.

E.Borgers Hard-Boiled Mysteries

--- William Denton <> wrote:
> There are a number of good Canadian mystery writers,
> but I don't think any
> of them really write in a hardboiled style. The
> closest you'll get is
> politely softboiled, or resignedly hard-working in a
> sort of Presbyterian
> way. Hugh Garner's Inspector McDumont police
> procedurals come close.
> I'm leaving out Ross Macdonald, and any pulp writers
> who wrote for
> American pulps (because I can't think of any)

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