God, I love Cornell Woolrich.
One of the things that struck me as I got into the works of Freeman Wills Crofts is how, from book to book, he always finds a way to subtly alter the nature of the plot he is writing so that he never covers the exact same ground twice. This was evidently not so much … Continue reading #957: Rendezvous in Black (1948) by Cornell Woolrich
Roughly twenty years ago, the British publisher Orion released a series of reprints under the banner of Crime Masterworks which had something of a transformative effect on the books Younger Me started to look out for. Included in that selection was the short story collection Nightwebs (1971) by Cornell Woolrich.
I hadn’t intended Phantom Lady (1942) to be my next Cornell Woolrich read — that was going to be a revisit of the short story collection Nightwebs (1971) which so underwhelmed me and put me off Woolrich for two decades, only for me to fall in love with the man’s work recently — but, after … Continue reading #912: Phantom Lady (1942) by Cornell Woolrich [a.p.a. by William Irish]
Past Jim has a lot to answer for — this haircut, for one, or that fact that I cannot forget the embarrassment of 11:48am on 4th June 1997 — but my current frustration with him is how easily and summarily he dismissed the writing of Cornell Woolrich after reading the Nightwebs (1971) collection as part … Continue reading #858: The Bride Wore Black, a.k.a. Beware the Lady (1940) by Cornell Woolrich
It’s fair to say that, in the course of writing this blog over the last six years, I have become known as something of a plot fiend. Atmosphere is lovely, memorable characters are preferable, social commentary perfectly acceptable, but what drew me to classic-era detective fiction was the possibilities of plot and plenty of it. … Continue reading #818: Waltz into Darkness (1947) by Cornell Woolrich [a.p.a. by William Irish]
Don’t be put off by the publication date — we’re deep in the Golden Age here, with the twelve stories in this collection originally published in 1934 and 1935. And, oh my, what a collection it is.
The final two stories for this month to be plucked out of the listings in Robert Adey’s reference bible Locked Room Murders (1992) sees a return to the work of Cornell Woolrich, who was discussed on this site only a few weeks ago.
Today is the fifth Bodies from the Library conference at the British Library where, at approximately 16:40 this afternoon, after the intelligent people have had their say, Dan and I shall take to the stage to discuss impossible crimes in fiction.
I don’t know the exact point at which an author becomes one I want to read in great depth, but I do know that the American Mystery Classics range has introduced me to novels by three authors who, in virtually no time at all, became fixtures on my Long-Range Reading List — those being Craig … Continue reading #1017: The Unsuspected (1946) by Charlotte Armstrong