Mildred Pearce (the book) may not strictly fit the category of noir because there's no crime in it, or at least a specific crime is not the focus of the book. Mordecai Richler's books usually have some element of crime, more to show the proximity of crime to the life of his characters, who are all doomed by their mediocrity and hypocrisies, but probably only Kevin Smith and I think they might be considered noir. Richler himself said they were satires, which as I said before, doesn't exclude them from being noir. But he didn't call them noirs. There's a sense of noir in Margaret Atwood and Robertson Davies work that to me parallels that in Ross MacDonald, and crimes as well though again, the crime is not always the focus. Ironically, I suspect noir is more evident in mainstream Canadian fiction than in Canadian crime writing. Of course, this is seen through my view of noir.
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Sent: Friday, August 13, 2010 10:00 AM
Subject: RARA-AVIS: Re: Dorchester goes digital and POD
> Along the lines of the scenarios we have been discussing, I wonder if noir will veer away from crime and become the preferred vehicle for telling noncriminous realistic stories as well. To me, that would make a lot of sense, and in fact, I bet it's already happening. I don't see any reason why noir should be a subgenre of crime fiction and/or crime film.
I would not be surprised if this is happening in novels that I'm not aware of, but I am certain that there are short stories that fit this bill.
Off the top of my head:
Scott Wolven's Controlled Burn and Richard Lange's Dead Boys contain examples. Larry Brown's Big Bad Love. Chris Offutt's story collection probably has more examples, but the powerful "Two-Eleven All Around" is one that stands out even though I haven't read it in 10 years. (Man, Offutt is missed as a prose writer).
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