Tuesday, November 20, 2012

2012 Alphabet in Crime Fiction Roundup

The 2012 Alphabet in Crime Fiction Roundup hosted by Kerrie Smith at her excellent blog, Mysteries in Paradise, has been fun. In last year’s meme I posted a combination of book reviews and author profiles. This year I resolved to put up 26 mystery author profiles of authors whose books I had read. I was successful.

Depending on which time zone of the world in which you read this post I put up my first post in the meme exactly six months ago, May 21, when I started with “A” is for Rennie Airth.

Over the course of the next 25 weeks I followed with profiles of a wide variety of authors. I chose to have the greatest concentration of profiles of Canadian authors. I had posts on seven Canadian authors:

            1.) “B” is for Gail Bowen;

            2.) “D” is for William Deverell;

            3.) “E” is for Jill Edmondson;

            4.) “P” is for Edward O. Phillips;

            5.) “V” is for Michael Van Rooy;

            6.) “W” is for L.R. Wright; and,

            7.) “Y” is for Scott Young.

In addition to the profile of Gail Bowen I was able to post a review of her newly published book, Kaleidsocope.

The saddest profile of the 26 involved Michael Van Rooy because he sadly died last year of a heart attack at 42. He was just establishing himself as a coming mystery author in Canada when he died.

My profile of L.R. Wright unexpectedly brought to me a very nice comment from her daughter, J. Wright. In that comment she spoke of her mother’s attitude towards the cancer that killed her when she was 61:

About her battle with cancer, she asked us to say that when she died, the cancer died with her. It was a draw.

Having completed seven Canadian profiles and, having a few from last year, I anticipate setting up a page in the near future of an alphabetical list of Canadian mystery writer profiles.

Moving outside Canada there I was introduced to a new pair of writers because I was short of existing authors in “Q” and “Z”. For “Q” I read a mystery of African, now American, writer Kwei Quartey. For the end of the alphabet I read a book by Chicago author, Mark Richard Zubro.

I profiled two authors I had also profiled in the 2011 meme – Qiu Xiaolong and Arthur Upfield. I found a new way to add to my profiles with each author. For Xiaolong I was able to have Q & A over his use of poetry in his mysteries. With Upfield I explored the origins of his character, Napoleon “Bony” Bonaparte and found he had been less than candid in his official explanations.

It turned out that “N” for Stuart Neville has become the most popular post I have put up on the blog as it found its way into the top of some search engines. There have been thousands of page views of the profile.

Out of the 26 profiles my favourite is “Y” is for Scott Young. I had known Young as a sportswriter and a novelist of young adult hockey fiction but never knew he had written any mysteries among his 40 plus books. It was a good surprise to find he had written two mysteries set in the Canadian  Arctic. I enjoyed Murder in a Cold Climate and appreciated Young making his sleuth the first Inuk RCMP Inspector, Matthew “Matteesie” Kitogitak, and refreshingly normal in appearance.

My next post will provide links to all my posts for the meme.

Thanks again Kerrie for hosting this meme which has enriched my reading of mystery fiction.


  1. Many thanks for your participation and support Bill

  2. Bill - Thanks for this summary. I enjoyed reading your meme posts and I learned from all of them.

  3. Kerrie: Thanks for the comment. You are an excellent host.

  4. Margot: Thanks for the kind words. I always appreciate hearing from you.