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Detective and mystery stories

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01:00:22

Writing the American Detective

Inspired by progenitors of the genre, Robert B. Parker writes a series of hard-boiled detective novels featuring a private investigator named Spenser. The books have recently been adapted into a television show called Spenser for Hire. Parker's newest novel is called Taming the Sea-horse.

05:04

British Mystery Novelist P.D. James

The writer, known for her grisly descriptions of crime scenes, lives a quiet life as a grandmother in her 60s. Her novels focus on psychological themes rather than the tightly-plotted mysteries associated with the works of Agatha Christie.

03:48

A Book of Romance, Mystery, and Controversy

Playwright Marsha Norman's first novel The Fortune Teller, about missing children and abortion, adopts a freewheeling, almost primitive approach to narrative. Critic John Leonard says unconventional structure works.

03:47

A Book of Romance, Mystery, and Controversy

Playwright Marsha Norman's first novel The Fortune Teller, about missing children and abortion, adopts a freewheeling, almost primitive approach to narrative. Critic John Leonard says unconventional structure works.

09:55

A Western Writer Reinvents the Detective Genre

James Crumley's increasingly popular mystery novels feature the detective Milo Milodragovitch, who is as flawed as the criminals he pursues. Unlike the urban settings of classic hard-boiled fiction, his books take place in Montana.

09:28

The Real Life of a Private Eye

Irwin Blye is a private investigator who has coauthored a book about his trade. He joins Fresh Air to talk about what his day-to-day work looks like--in contrast to the detectives of novels and films.

09:20

Changing Women's Roles in Detective Fiction

Sarah Paretsky's novels feature women detectives who are every bit as tough as their hard-boiled male counterparts. Her work subverts classic tropes of vulnerable virgins and femme fatales. Her newest book is called Bitter Medicine.

03:31

Mystery in Amsterdam.

Book Critic John Leonard will review The Sergeant's Cat, a new mystery novel by Janwillem Van De Wetering, a former police officer in the Amsterdam police force.

09:49

Prolific in Pulp, Now Admired by Critics

Harry Whittington built a career on churning out pulp paperbacks. His mystery novels have received recent critical acclaim; four of them were just reissued by Black Lizard Books.

09:38

The Mysteries of Faith and Culture

Mystery novelist Tony Hillerman's books feature Navajo detectives in the American Southwest, and are informed by that tribe's religious practices. He's not Indian himself, but grew up in their communities.

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