Monthly Archives: June 2013

Sweden Noir

There is a great, gray and gritty wave of detective stories set in Sweden.  The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo has become an icon and Kurt Wallander has captured us as well.  I’m reading The Inspector and Silence by Hakan Nesser now, and it is quickly gathering steam as I turn the pages.  A delightful, subtle intelligence and frank humor are found within this detective division and several more novels to look forward to in the series.  

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Georges Simenon’s The Accomplices

Like Hitchcock, who crafted a formality and dignity that cloaked a devilish (some have said fiendish) sense of humor, Georges Simenon was often pictured as a genial pipe-smoker.  He was actually a master of the Dark Side, and explored motivations and behavior that lay on the far side of noir.  The Accomplices is a gray and gritty novel that I nevertheless read in two sittings. 

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Now Playing…in my bookshelf

After finishing the odyssey by Bolano, The Savage Detectives, I found the wonderful The Windup Girl, by Paolo Bacigalupi.  It is a terrific sci-fi thriller, with science that I actually understood–and whose awful relevance I could recognize–sturdy, exciting characters and a pace that gathered velocity and took me right along.  I recommend this one all over the place– to my barber, my doctor, etc.  

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