Better Lock the Door

Month: August 2021

“All The Devils Are Here” by Louise Penny

All The Devils Are Here by Louise Penny

All The Devils Are Here by Louise Penny

The 2021 Agatha Award for the Best Contemporary Novel went to “All The Devils Are Here” (Minotaur) by Louise Penny. “All The Devils Are Here” is the sixteenth book in the Chief Inspector Gamache series.

Chief Inspector Armand Gamache is enjoying his first night with his family in the beautiful city of Paris. He and his wife look forward to spending some time with their son and daughter. And they will get to know their grandchildren better. They are also hoping that their very pregnant daughter will deliver before they have to leave. Continue reading

The Development of Spy Novels

“Bond. James Bond.”

Who can forget how Ian Fleming introduces his British secret agent in the legendary “Casino Royale”?

World's Most Popular Spy

Ian Fleming’s First James Bond Novel

This book introduced the world to the handsome, classy, suave, highly intelligent M16 agent with an assassin’s heart of stone. It birthed a franchise that numbered fifteen books that Ian Fleming wrote, and additional over thirty-one novels written after Fleming’s death by an assortment of authors including John Gardner, Raymond Benson, and Anthony Horowitz. As well as over twenty movies spanning over 60 years. (Check the fashions.)

Spy novels emerged in the early twentieth century and have have remained very popular. The stories involve the clandestine activities of agents often between major world powers. The genre has been very popular on both sides of the pond, as well as in Asia.

The themes of the story are similar to the adventure novels, thrillers, and politico-military thrillers. The hero, in the early novels the protagonist was nearly always a male, was often a government agent racing against Continue reading

Tess Gerritsen

Terry (Tess) Gerritsen knew she wanted to write when she was a little girl growing up in San Diego, California. With a Chinese immigrant and a Chinese-American seafood chef as parents, she dreamed of writing her own Nancy Drew stories. According to an interview in the July 15, 2021, New York Times, Tess thought Nancy Drew had everything a seven-year-old girl could want; she was clever, fearless, and she drove her own car.

But like many parents, hers had a different idea for their little girl. They were worried about how someone could make enough money writing. Sounds like common concern.

So Gerritsen put off her writing and went to college. First, she went to Stanford University to study anthropology. Then she went on to study medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, where she graduated in 1979 to become an internist. She started practicing medicine in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Beginning of a Dream

It was when she read “The Woman Warrior”, by Maxine Hong Kingston, that she realized Continue reading

2021 Killer Nashville’s Silver Falchion Award Nominees.

On July 30, Clay Stafford announced the Killer Nashville’s Silver Falchion Award nominees. The Silver Falchion Awards are handed out at the Killer Nashville Conference to recognize and honor the Best Book published in the previous year. The books are chosen by  how they incorporate the elements of mystery, thriller, and suspense.

The awards will be given out on August 21 at their Awards Dinner. You can find a link to the finalists here.

The finalists were placed in the following categories: Best Action Adventure, Best Comedy, Best historical, Best Investigator, Best Juvenile/YA, Best Mystery, Best Nonfiction, Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Best Short Story Collection/Anthology, Best Supernatural, Best Suspense, and Best Thriller.

Author’s note: A falchion is a one-handed, single-edged sword similar to a machete. They were used as early as the thirteenth century.

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