Monday, 11 March 2013

Soho Crime around the world

I'm a huge fan of New York publisher Soho Crime's output - particularly the translated fiction. Their catalogue covers detective thrillers from Japan to Norway. Here are some of the picks - dates are for original (foreign-language, where appropriate) publication:

Cara Black - PARIS
American author Cara Black is as impressively prolific as Janwillem van de Wetering (below) - her Aimée Leduc is a half-French, half-American private detective who throws herself into her cases, alongside dwarf, computer expert sidekick René Friant. The novels travel the arrondissements of Paris, imbuing each book with the atmosphere of the individual districts. 
WHAT THEY SAY 'Murder in the Marais provides a richly textured journey into the dark side of the City of Light.' - Linda Grant
CHECK OUT Murder in the Marais (1999)

Akimitsu Takagi - TOKYO
Another excellent translation - by Deborah Boehm - which brings Akimitsu Takagi's traumatic The Tattoo Murder Case (1948) up to date. Set in the aftermath of Japan's loss in the WWII and the destruction of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a trio of detectives try to crack a case of tattoo theft. Do also try Seichi Matsumoto's excellent Inspector Imanishi Investigates (1961)
WHAT THEY SAY 'Clever, kinky, highly entertaining...' Washington Post on The Tattoo Murder Case
CHECK OUT The Tattoo Murder Case

Helene Tursten - GÖTEBORG
Helene Tursten's Inspector Irene Huss is a judo-practising cop to rival Sarah Lund in a series of procedurals that marches in the steps of Swedish innovators Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö.
WHAT THEY SAY 'Huss is quickly becoming one of the most satisfying lead characters in the thriving world of Swedish crime fiction.' - Booklist
CHECK OUT Detective Inspector Huss (1998)

Janwillem van de Wetering - AMSTERDAM and beyond
Dutch Zen-adherent Janwillem van de Wetering's many mysteries feature police duo Grijpstra and De Gier, as well as their boss, the Commisaris. The books present a thoughtful view of Dutch policing and venture further afield - to New York, Japan and one-time Dutch colonies, including Aruba and Curaçao. Questioning and even mystical.
WHAT THEY SAY 'He is doing what Simenon might have done if Albert Camus had sublet his skull.' - John Leonard
CHECK OUT Outsider in Amsterdam (1975), The Japanese Corpse (1977) and The Streetbird (1983)

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