Baltimore is the setting for Laura Lippman's noir novels, including her popular Tess Monaghan series, and her new stand-alone novel 'Lady in the Lake.' Her new novel is set in the mid 60s but deals with issues that are still with us like racism, sexism, and homophobia.
Maureen Corrigan reviews a new biography of Chester Himes, who published his first novel in the 1940s and was hailed as a worthy member of an elite company of black intellectuals and writers like Ralph Ellison and Richard Wright. Now his literary legacy is largely forgotten. This new biography hopes to change that.
After "Robert Galbraith" was revealed to be the pen name for J.K. Rowling, many readers have been circling back to a "debut" novel they'd initially overlooked. Critic Maureen Corrigan says the mystery is respectable, but she will shelve it in the "I've read worse, but I've read better" category.
This is the second mystery in Sara Gran's series featuring 40-ish bad-girl detective Claire DeWitt. Critic Maureen Corrigan says that reading a noir novel written by a Brooklyn-born author gave her a rush of private-eye, patriotic pride.
In Who Could That Be at This Hour?, a prequel to A Series of Unfortunate Events, Daniel Handler satirizes pulp mysteries and uncovers the parallels between detective fiction and childhood. In both, he says, an outsider is trying to make his way in a mysteriously corrupt world.
A new mystery by novelist Zygmunt Miloszewski explores Poland's relationship to its anti-Semitic past. Teodor Szacki, the likably washed-up hero, must sprint all over town interrogating suspects, including so-called Polish "patriots" — extremists who bombard him with their anti-Semitic rants.