Re: RARA-AVIS: Rare Books Continued - Somebody's Done For

From: jacquesdebierue (
Date: 28 Oct 2008

  • Next message: Richard Moore: "RARA-AVIS: Re: Rare Books Continued - Somebody's Done For"

    --- In, "Brian Thornton"
    <bthorntonwriter@...> wrote:
    > Dorothy Uhnak was also a cop.
    > And Hammett worked as a private detective before actually writing about
    > them.

    Joe Gores was an agency detective for a long time, too. And the great Catalan writer Manuel de Pedrolo (author of a huge number of novels, including several fine noirs and several dark fantasy titles) was a detective for a while in the Barcelona of the fifties, a grim, noirish place, the way he shows it. Too bad his work has hardly been translated (nothing into English, I think, and only some works into Spanish). Pedrolo was a translator, too, and translated many American noir and hardboiled novels from the fifties and sixties. He drew inspiration from the hard-hitting, direct style of the hardboiled school. In Spain, where roundabout and decorative verbiage is still considered "good style", Pedrolo is a very notable exception. He knew what he was doing. Late in his life he was able to publish many novels that he had had to shelve because of censorship. He acquired a large reading public and died comfortably off, with at least one book having sold over a million copies (for a book in Catalan, that is astronomical, even more so for an excellent book).

    Anyway, if someone is adventurous and wants to take a chance with a publication of Pedrolo in English or another language, I highly recommend his work. I stumbled upon a couple of his noir novels several years ago and since then I've read practically all of his works (ninety plus books, including poetry, essays, short stories and many novels).



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