Re: RARA-AVIS: Sixties and seventies' P.I's

From: Michael Robison (
Date: 08 May 2006

Juri Nummelin wrote in regards to my comment about PI criticism pointing to a bad slump in the sixties and early seventies:

Hasn't this been common criticism throughout the eighties and still in the nineties? At least when I came in and started to read the stuff (my first Chandler and Ross Macdonald being in 1985 or 1986), everyone was lamenting about the death of good private eye writing.

************ It was Ruehlmann's Saint With A Gun that put the question in my head. He discusses the big names like Hammett, Chandler, and Ross Macdonald, and then proceeds to Brett Halliday and Howard Browne (John Evans), and then he's into Prather and Tidyman and I'm beginning to sense the downhill slide myself without him saying a thing. And then it's Pendleton
(Executioner series), Murphy (Destroyer), Messmam
(Revenger), Scarpetta (Marksman), and McCurtin and I admit I haven't read much of this but it ain't sounding too good, and I'm thinking that Ruehlmann
(who doesn't have much appreciation for even the classic detective writers) must be ignoring the really substantial detective writers in the 1960-1972 timeframe (Ruehlmann's book has got a 1973 publishing date).

I'm going to read the authors that everyone was kind enough to suggest. I want to get into this timeframe and see for myself.

Thanks, miker

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