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Critical Survey of Mystery and Detective Fiction


This is a comprehensive survey of mystery and detective fiction that covers more than 390 writers and includes overviews on more than three dozen aspects of the genre.Continuing the Salem Press tradition of "Critical Survey" series, "Critical Survey of Mystery and Detective Fiction, Revised Edition" provides detailed analyses of the lives and writings of major contributors to the fascinating literary subgenre of mystery and detective fiction. This greatly expanded five-volume set is the first full revision of a work that originally appeared in 1988. This new edition updates or replaces all the original articles and adds entirely new articles on 118 more authors, raising the total to 393 articles. It also adds 38 entirely new overview essays and 5 new appendixes.Covered here are such well-known mystery writers as Raymond Chandler, Agatha Christie, Arthur Conan Doyle, Erle Stanley Gardner, Dashiell Hammett, Edgar Allan Poe, and Dorothy L. Sayers. New to this edition are such venerable writers as Louisa May Alcott, Edward Stratemeyer, and Margaret Truman. Popular contemporary writers, such as Mary Higgins Clark, Patricia Cornwell, John Dunning, John Grisham, Thomas Harris, Rolando Hinojosa, Scott Turow, J.K. Rowling, and Stuart Woods and also included.This set is designed to meet the needs of secondary school and college undergraduate students. Articles on authors are arranged alphabetically, by the names or pen names under which the authors publish their mystery fiction. Each article is formatted identically, opening with ready-reference data on the author's name, pseudonyms, birth and death dates and places, and types of plots.The main text of the article is broken into three parts; "Contribution" sums up the author's place in the mystery and detective fiction genre and discusses what sets the author apart from others in the field. "Biography," provides a brief summary of the author's life, paying particular attention to events relating to the author's mystery and detective fiction. Finally, "Analysis" contains an overview of the author's writing that discusses aspects of the author's themes, motifs, and writing style. This section is further divided into subheaded sections analyzing important and representative works by the author.The appendixes include an annotated bibliography of general works, a guide to Web resources, lists of major writing awards, a detailed time line of highlights in the history of mystery and detective fiction and separate glosaries on genre terminology and crime fiction jargon. Indexes include chronological, geographical, and category lists of writers covered in author articles and a general subject index.

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Tags: Survey, Critical, Detective, Fiction, Mystery