RARA-AVIS: French "polars": Heroes

From: Karin Montin ( kmontin@sympatico.ca)
Date: 13 May 2006

The most recent isue of Lire, a French magazine on books, is a special on crime/mystery fiction.

An article, "Heroes Are Back" gives factsheets on a number of fictional heroes. I'll sum up the main facts below (original title where given). The other headings are distinguishing features, qualities, defects, police record, world view, and brief review of current novel.

author: Andrea Camilleri (Italian), hero: Commissioner Montalbano, best investigation: La forme de l'eau, most recent novel: La prima indagine di Montalbano

author: James Patterson (American), hero: Alex Cross, best investigation: Jack & Jill, most recent novel: Violets are Blue

author: Donna Leon (American), hero: Guido Brunetti, best investigation: Un v鮩tien anonyme, most recent novel: Uniform Justice

author: James Crumley (American), hero: C. W. Shugrue, best investigation: Un v鮩tien anonyme, most recent novel: The Right Madness

author: Tony Hillerman (American), heroes: Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee, best investigation: L࠯sait les morts, most recent novel: Skeleton Man

author: Dominque Sylvain (French), heroes: Lola Jost and Ingrid Diesel, best investigation: Passage du d鳩r, most recent novel: Manta Corridor

author: Donald Westlake (American), hero: John Dortmunder, best investigation: Le paquet, most recent novel: The Road to Ruin

author: Richard Stark (Donald Westlake) (American), hero: Parker, best investigation: Backflash, most recent novel: Firebreak

author: Ruth Rendell (British), hero: Chief Inspector Reginald Wexford, best investigation: All good, but most recent worth special mention, most recent novel: The Babes in the Wood

author: Ken Bruen (Irish), hero: Jack Taylor, best investigation: Delirium Tremens, most recent novel: The Killing of the Tinkers (French title: Toxic Blues)

author: Ed McBain (American), hero: Steve Carella, best investigation: hard to choose from over 50 titles, let's say, A la bonne heure, most recent novel: Hark!

author: Ian Rankin (Scottish), hero: John Rebus, best investigation: Le jardin des pendus, most recent novel: Resurrection Men

author: Arnaldur Indridason (Icelandic), hero: Commissioner Erlendur, best investigation: La cit頤es jarres, most recent novel: La femme en vert (original title not given)

author: Henning Mankell (Swedish), hero: Kurt Wallander, best investigation: Les morts de la Saint-Jean, most recent novel: Le retour du professeur de danse

author: Robert Crais (American), hero: Elvis Cole, best investigation: The Forgotten Man, most recent novel: The Forgotten Man

author: Jo Nesbat's O with a stroke through it] (Norwegian), hero: Harry Hole, best investigation: Les cafards, most recent novel: L'鴯ile du diable


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