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Thursday, 17 August 2017

‘American Noir: The Pocket Essential Guide to US Crime Fiction, Film and TV’ by Barry Forshaw

Published by Pocket Essentials
27 April 2017.
ISBN 978-1-843344-918-8

In this, the fourth of his useful and enjoyable Noir series, Barry Forshaw provides information on a range of contemporary writers (and a list of the names of others ‘worthy of attention’), looks at a selection of films and tv shows, and includes interviews with James Elroy, Sara Paretsky Scott Turow, Patricia Cornwell and Kathy Reichs.  His lists of the 30 best contemporary US crime novels and the five best contemporary US TV crime shows provide a good starting point for some interesting discussions.

The book canters through American Crime fiction of the early 21st century, conveys information in an easily accessible manner and provides a readable overview of the whole area, one that can be dipped into at random, consulted for specific information or read for general interest.
Reviewer:  Jo Hesslewood
Other books by the author:  Italian Cinema; The Noir series:  Nordic Noir, Euro Noir, Brit Noir
Barry Forshaw's latest books are Nordic Noir and British Crime Film. Other work includes Death in a Cold Climate: A Guide to Scandinavian Crime Fiction, The Rough Guide to Crime Fiction and British Crime Writing: An Encyclopedia, along with books on Italian cinema, film noir and the first biography of Stieg Larsson; he also writes on classical music. His next books are British Gothic Cinema and a study of Thomas Harris and The Silence of the Lambs. He writes for various national newspapers and magazines, edits Classical CD Choice, DVD Choice and Crime Time, and broadcasts for ITV and BBC TV documentaries. He has been Vice Chair of the Crime Writers’ Association, and has taught an MA course at City University on the history of crime fiction.

Jo Hesslewood.  Crime fiction has been my favourite reading material since as a teenager I first spotted Agatha Christie on the library bookshelves.  For twenty-five years the commute to and from London provided plenty of reading time.  I am fortunate to live in Cambridge, where my local crime fiction book club, Crimecrackers, meets at Heffers Bookshop .  I enjoy attending crime fiction events and currently organise events for the Margery Allingham Society.

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