Talking About Detective Fiction

by P.D. James | Nonfiction |
ISBN: 057125358X Global Overview for this book
Registered by klaradyn of Praha, Praha Czech Republic on 4/10/2011
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6 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by klaradyn from Praha, Praha Czech Republic on Sunday, April 10, 2011
Synopsis from amazon.co.uk:
P.D. James brings a lifetime of reading and writing crime fiction to bear on this personal history of the genre, from the birth of the detective story, through Wilkie Collins and Conan Doyle, to the golden age of crime and the rise of Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers, Ngaio Marsh and Margery Allingham. There is a chapter on great American crime writers such as Raymond Chandler and Dashiel Hammett, and P.D. James also discusses many of her favourite detectives, from Sherlock Holmes to Kurt Wallender.

I quite enjoyed these essays on detective fiction, although I must admit I was expecting more of a general overview of the genre as a whole - James focuses mainly on English detective fiction, and then specifically on the Golden Age. Some modern authors get no more than a few sentences. Still, an enjoyable read. It is clear that James loves this genre, not only as a writer, but also as a reader.

Journal Entry 2 by klaradyn at Cape Town, Western Cape South Africa on Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Bookray. Please try not to keep the book longer than a month (4 weeks). It's very short so this shouldn't be a problem!

Participants:

FrancesinSA (South Africa) --> ships anywhere
dutch-book (Netherlands) --> prefers EU, can do international
JudySlump612 (US) --> ships anywhere
madpocky (Phillipines) --> ships anywhere
NMReader (US) --> US shipping only Book is travelling here

--> Last person to release into the wild or pass on to another Bookcrosser

Journal Entry 3 by klaradyn at Cape Town, Western Cape South Africa on Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Released 8 yrs ago (5/10/2011 UTC) at Cape Town, Western Cape South Africa

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Book is travelling to FrancesinSA to start the ring. Hope it arrives soon, and that you enjoy it!

Journal Entry 4 by FrancesinSA at Sasolburg, Free State South Africa on Thursday, May 19, 2011
Book arrived today. Thanks, klaradyn.


Journal Entry 5 by FrancesinSA at Sasolburg, Free State South Africa on Sunday, May 29, 2011
P.D. James writes mostly about the Golden Age of detective fiction, which refers to the period between the two world wars. The detective fiction written during this time had a distinctive formula and I enjoyed reading the ‘rules’ laid down by Ronald Knox regarding this era.

P.D. James is very knowledgeable and it was a pleasure to read this book.

Journal Entry 6 by FrancesinSA at Sasolburg, Free State South Africa on Monday, May 30, 2011

Released 8 yrs ago (5/30/2011 UTC) at Sasolburg, Free State South Africa

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Posting today to dutch-book.

Journal Entry 7 by dutch-book at Weesp, Noord-Holland Netherlands on Thursday, June 09, 2011
Arrived today, and made a surprisingly quick journey. Along with a little homemade bag which looked great (reminds me of my mother in law.)

Journal Entry 8 by dutch-book at Weesp, Noord-Holland Netherlands on Thursday, July 07, 2011
Finished it today. I am not really into detective fiction, but after reading this I suddenly felt the urge to sit down with an Agatha Christie, a pen and a paper and that way trying to find out who the killer is. I might do that someday.
The book will travel on today to JudySlump612.

Journal Entry 9 by dutch-book at Weesp, Noord-Holland Netherlands on Thursday, July 07, 2011

Released 8 yrs ago (7/7/2011 UTC) at Weesp, Noord-Holland Netherlands

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Sent off to JudySlump612. Enjoy!

Journal Entry 10 by wingJudySlump612wing at Minneapolis, Minnesota USA on Friday, July 15, 2011
Book arrived here safely today, and it looks great. Thank you klaradyn, for sharing this!

Journal Entry 11 by wingJudySlump612wing at Minneapolis, Minnesota USA on Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Like klaradyn. I wished there had been more of this. But then of course, that might have taken James' attention away from producing her own masterpieces, the last thing we should wish for. My favorite part was Chapter V, Four Formidable Women, and I'm also glad James approves of Sara Paretsky and her V. I. Warshawski, one of my favorites. The cartoons at the beginning of each chapter were particularly delightful.

Journal Entry 12 by wingJudySlump612wing at By mail, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Released 8 yrs ago (7/20/2011 UTC) at By mail, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

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Mailed today to Madpocky

Journal Entry 13 by madpocky at Manila, -- By post or by hand/ in person -- Philippines on Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Got this in the mail today. Will start reading this as soon as possible. Thanks very much for sharing! :)

Journal Entry 14 by madpocky at Manila, -- By post or by hand/ in person -- Philippines on Tuesday, September 13, 2011
I’ve only just started venturing into non-fiction this year, and after reading this book I realized I am still far from being open to its many different themes and content. I do fairly well with inspirational books and can read them without blinking an eye. But books such as P.D. James Talking About Detective Fiction, took a little more effort to finish. Case in point: it took me ten days to get to the last page. I did not really feel compelled by anything to read it on a daily basis, and can only last about 10-20 minutes into it before giving into the urge to put it down for the day. While the content is quite interesting and has indeed taught me a lot about its topic, I cannot really say I was especially drawn to it. It’s not the book’s fault, of course. The book itself is well written, easy to follow and very informative and insightful. I even learned a few pointers on novel writing which can be used with any other genre. The problem lies with me, and my apparent lack of patience for books without dialogues. Yes, I’ve still got a long way to go. =P

Talking About Detective Fiction is a series of essays about the history and development of detective fiction from when it first began to what it has become now, even onto how it would be like in the future. The detective fiction has enjoyed both positive and negative reactions from readers and critics alike, but has maintained a resilient quality to it through the years, even attracting droves of novelists to pitch in their own unique innovations and styles into the genre. It states that the primary reason that both writers and readers are so drawn to this type of fiction is man’s natural desire for control and order amidst the chaos of daily life. P.D. James said it best when she wrote, “The detective story deals with the most dramatic and tragic manifestations of man’s nature and the ultimate disruption of murder, yet the form itself is orderly, controlled, formulaic, providing a secure structure within which the imaginations of writer and reader alike can confront the unthinkable.”

Journal Entry 15 by madpocky at to the next participant, A Bookray -- Controlled Releases on Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Released 8 yrs ago (9/13/2011 UTC) at to the next participant, A Bookray -- Controlled Releases

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Book posted to the next reader on September 13, 2011. Thanks very much for sharing!

Journal Entry 16 by NMReader at Herndon, Virginia USA on Wednesday, December 07, 2011
Talk about a slow boat. The book arrived on Sat. I will read once it reaches top of mount TBR

Journal Entry 17 by NMReader at Herndon, Virginia USA on Tuesday, December 20, 2011
I start this book on the plane from Chicago to Rapid City SD.

I am about 2/3 through the book. I am enjoying it very much and hope to finish tonight or tomorrow.


Journal Entry 18 by NMReader at Herndon, Virginia USA on Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Finished this last night. I really enjoyed her insights and discussion of mysteries. I am going to share this with my SIL and sister.

Journal Entry 19 by NMReader at Herndon, Virginia USA on Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Released 7 yrs ago (1/17/2012 UTC) at Herndon, Virginia USA

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I left this book with my sister-in-law to read. She will mail to my sister when she is done and then my sister will return to me.


Journal Entry 20 by NMReader at Reston Regional Library in Reston, Virginia USA on Thursday, October 12, 2017

Released 1 yr ago (10/12/2017 UTC) at Reston Regional Library in Reston, Virginia USA

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Donated to Friend's of the Library

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