Perfectly Criminal: Discover the Secrets of the Perfect Crime

Overview

The linking theme in this collection of stories is the "perfect crime". It includes contributions from authors such as Susan Moody, Lindsey Davies, Reginald Hill, Peter Lovesey, and Val McDermid.
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Overview

The linking theme in this collection of stories is the "perfect crime". It includes contributions from authors such as Susan Moody, Lindsey Davies, Reginald Hill, Peter Lovesey, and Val McDermid.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Crime Writers' Association anthologies have appeared annually for 40 years, skipping only 1995. Nineteen members of the CWA have contributed new stories to this collection, first published in Great Britain in 1996. Kate Charles, a transplanted American and current chairman of the CWA, contributes "Sheep's Clothing," which demonstrates how engaging a short story can be. Another charmer is editor Edwards's artful "Where Do You Find Your Ideas?" What makes many of these stories work so well, including Edwards's and Charles's, is the twistthat abrupt hairpin turn that comes in the last few sentences. Other notable examples include "This Way Nobody Gets the Blame" by Lesley Grant-Adamson, "Disposing of Mrs. Cronk" by Peter Lovesey and "Choose Your Poison" by Tony Wilmot. Not all genre conventions, nor all of the selections, are so adeptly handled. The theme of interchangeable identities becomes a tired gimmick in "Abstain From Beans" by Lindsey Davis and in H.R.F. Keating's "An (Almost) Perfect Alibi." Overall, however, there is gratifying variety in these tales from a group of skilled and inventive writers. (Apr.)
Kirkus Reviews
Only the Crime Writers Association, with its ties to the long tradition of ironic British understatement, would ever have sponsored an entire anthology of perfect-crime stories. With few exceptions (John Malcolm, Andrew Taylor, Keith Wright), the formula practically guarantees a comic or sardonic tone that can quickly pall. The main variety is provided by the split between unexpected strokes of justice (Catherine Aird, Matt Coward, Reginald Hill, H.R.F. Keating, Peter Lovesey)—most of them not all that unexpected—and generally more ingenious crimes without punishment (Kate Charles, Lindsey Davis, Eileen Dewhurst, Gösta Gillberg, Lesley Grant-Adamson, Peter Lewis, Val McDermid, Susan Moody, Ian Rankin, Tony Wilmot, editor Edwards).

Whatever you do, though, don't read all 19 stories at a sitting. They might give you ideas.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780727851321
  • Publisher: Severn House Publishers
  • Publication date: 8/28/1996
  • Series: Cwa Series
  • Pages: 243
  • Product dimensions: 5.71 (w) x 8.83 (h) x 1.01 (d)

Meet the Author

The first of Martins eight novels, All the Lonely People, was nominated for the CWAs John Creasey Memorial Dagger and introduced lawyer Harry Devlin. Martin has also written a stand-alone, Take My Breath Away, and completed The Lazarus Widow by the late Bill Knox. His short stories are collected in Where Do You Find Your Ideas? and he has edited 14 anthologies. His ten non-fiction books include Urge to Kill, a study of homicide investigation. He has contributed many essays to reference books such as The Oxford Companion to Crime and Mystery Writing. The author lives in Great Britain.

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