A brief departure from my reviewing, but I thought I’d share a disappointment today. I had two two-hour train journeys today and with my usual preparedness, only took one book to read, which was finished on the first journey.
So, with some time before my meeting, I went the bookshop (OK, WHSmith’s) in Leeds station and, despite a sizeable fiction section, could find nothing that appealed to me. Nothing by Dame Agatha, which astounded me, and in my perusal, all of the crime and “mystery” books seemed to be either the twist-laden thriller á la Deaver or Coben or the messy serial killer nonsense á la Gerritsen or Slaughter.
Is there really a lack of a market for the entrail-free mystery novel? I appeal to my readers out there – who, of the current writers of crime fiction, should I be reading? Remember, I’m looking for well-plotted, fairly clued mysteries that don’t involve excessive amounts of blood and gore. I’m looking for a mystery that keeps me thinking while I’m reading. I’m looking for a murderer that isn’t simply picked at random out of a list of the characters when the writer gets to the end of the book.
Of the thriller writers, I do enjoy Jeffrey Deaver and, it may surprise you, Lee Child, both of whom can pull off some impressive surprises, plot-wise, but who out there at the moment is writing the great mystery novel? Over to you.