Tuesday, June 02, 2020

Selvie Shelfy

Sorry these are hard to read and the top three were actually Phil's but I am finishing off a shelf. The Armchair Detective is lots of fun Probably some of you have it. It has very varied list like Edgar Award Winners, and Julian Symons 100 best crime stories. It was published in 1989. Julian Symons wrote many mysteries but I cannot recall one showing up on FFB. I remember reading them with pleasure too. Remember Robin Winks, he's got a list in here too.

Funniest thing: they ask mystery writers to list their favorites and here's what Patricia Highsmith said. "Since I do not enjoy reading mystery books (therefore almost never do) I'm not the person to ask for a favorite list. ...a list would be 100% phony on my part. Sorry I can't be more of help toward your book."

The next book is Susan Sontag's ON PHOTOGRAPHY, which I read for SHOT IN DETROIT.
Next is a book given to me by James Reasoner. Horace McCoy's I SHOULD HAVE STAYED HOME. I haven't read it. It looks too fragile for my style of reading. But I love having it.
Two Jean Shepherd books which I reread when I need a good laugh. I had a third one with Fig Newton in the title, which I can't find.
Always meaning to read Gene Kerrigan's THE MIDNIGHT CHOIR, an Irish crime novel which is always mentioned in reviews of Irish crime novels.
Another Flannery O'Connor book. Read probably forty years ago.
And finally Chandler's THE SIMPLE ART OF MURDER which is an essay and some short stories.


George said...

I remember using THE ARMCHAIR DETECTIVE BOOK OF LISTS to buy books. I have the Chandler with its marvelous essay. That's an impressive variety of books!

pattinase (abbott) said...

It has been surprising going through them how I really have not hung on to many crime books. Or rather, most mysteries I get from the library or as ebooks rather than buy.

Jeff Meyerson said...

I'm read the Chandler and the Armchair Detective book and the Jean Shepherd (first in Playboy).

That's partly why I dislike Highsmith. She was a terrible snob.

Jeff Meyerson said...

I checked. That other Shepherd title was A FISTFUL OF FIG NEWTONS (which I haven't read).

Rick Robinson said...

Nice. I can't make out the top and third down books. You didn't tell us about the frog, though. What's it's story?

I have and have read and reread the Chandler, and the Jean Shepard (all three of them). Wish the picture was bigger.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I have always had the frog but can't remember how it came to me.
The top books if Penelope Fitzgerald's Offshore, which won the Booker one year. It looks terrific and I can't imagine why I didn't read it. The third book is On Being Told That Her Second Husband Has Taken His First Love,( and other stories) by Tess Slesinger. She wrote only two books, but several screenplays and then died at age forty. I think Phil got interested in her as a New York intellectual during the thirties.
Yes, Highsmith seldom comes off well but because she is such a misanthrope her books have real bite to them.

Jeff Meyerson said...

I've read a couple of Penelope Fitzgerald's books - THE BOOKSHOP and HUMAN VOICES (based on her working at BBC Headquarters in London during WWII). OFFSHORE was written in between the two.

Gerard Saylor said...

I've been reading an Archer Mayor novel from 2005, CHAT. I stopped reading his work after I was majorly disappointed by one of his novels preceding CHAT.

At some point before the pandemic I placed a hold on the GORMENGHAST trilogy by Mervyn Peake. I had never heard of the novels until I ran across a reference to either the books or film/TV adaptation. Not sure if I will finish any of the three novels.

I've been listening to HUNGER GAMES prequel. Lots of horrid violence.

pattinase (abbott) said...

A hard time to find the right book to fit your mood. And it changes from day to day.

Steve Oerkfitz said...

I'm a big fan of O'Connor, Chandler and Shephard.
Gerald-Gormenghast is well worth reading but slow. I read them back in the early 70's.

TracyK said...

I have not read anything by Jean Shepherd but I have a couple on my shelves. I have two Gene Kerrigan books also but haven't read them yet. One of them may be THE MIDNIGHT CHOIR.

That is a very nice frog.

pattinase (abbott) said...

He is a nice frog. I wish I remembered how it came to me.
If you need a laugh, Shepherd is your man. He used to be on the radio in Philly when I was a kid. Real late night.

Rick Robinson said...

Yes, the Shepard books are great. My kind of humor. You should do a post on them.