RARA-AVIS: Re: Best Contemporary hardboiled author

From: Sam Reaves ( reaves_sam@yahoo.com)
Date: 09 Dec 2006

Hey, folks. I'm new to the list, been lurking and decided to jump in here now that people are mentioning the good French noir writers. (Yasmina Khadra and Thierry Jonquet have come up.) The French, maybe not surprisingly, have a terrific noir tradition, going back to people like Simonin (NOT Simenon) and Giovanni in the fifties, through Jean-Patrick Manchette in the seventies, Jean-Claude Izzo's stupendous and very noir Marseille trilogy in the nineties, and now Khadra, who may be the blackest of all (bad things going down in Algeria; Yasmina Khadra is a pseudonym he adopted to avoid slaughter by one faction or the other). Also Sebastian Japrisot, though not everything he wrote was noir
(his L'ete meurtrier, translated as One Deadly Summer, is one of the best crime novels ever, anywhere). I'm not sure how many of these have been translated into English; as noted, Serpent's Tail in Britain has brought out a lot of good continental crime fiction in translation. But these guys are reason enough to learn French if you don't already read it. Otherwise, only reader demand will get these deserving writers translated into English, so start asking around for them. There's a lot of great writing going on out there. Sam Reaves (a.k.a. Dominic Martell)

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