"... the work is a trove of fascinating information that can be dipped into for months and years to come." - The Times "The book is bang up to date with entries for a number of authors who have made a name for themselves in the past decade plus a number of literary writers, some of whose key work falls into the crime category (Peter Ackroyd, Martin Amis, Iain Sinclair). You will find all the names you associate with the Golden Age of crime writing (Christie, Sayers, Marsh, Allingham), spy and espionage (Ambler, Le Carre, even Stella Rimington), thrillers (MacLean, Badley, Lyall, but sadly no Duncan Kyle), and detective-from the days of Conan Doyle to the gritty modern Rebus police procedurals of Ian Rankin. But it doesn't stop there. The book also includes a number of themed essays taking in everything from the gothic and penny dreadful to the British connections of Raymond Chandler. A random dipping into the pages of book reveals essays on 'The Godfathers of British Crime Fiction', an essay of Jane Marple, a lengthy piece on G. K. Chesterton and an entry for Martyn Waites and his burned-out journalist Stephen Larkin. The book is littered with reviews of magazines, films and TV shows, overviews of the works of anthologists and true crime writers... it's a book that can be picked up and browsed or read from cover to cover. Either way, you'll stumble across half a dozen new things: again, a random sampling turned up the fact that Jasper Fforde began his writing career whilst working as a focus puller on blockbuster movies (amongst them the film that reinvented James Bond, GoldenEye). If you're into crime fiction in any way, this deserves to be on your shelves.' " - Times Online "One reason for the size of these two volumes is that along with the expected entries on James, PD, Christie, Agatha, and Conan Doyle, Sir Arthur, are the unexpected inclusions; not just the usual suspects, but just about anyone who has written a novel with a crime theme. Barry Forshaw has ranged very wide indeed, and pretty much everyone is included." - BBC Front Row "Alongside the individual author entries are pieces depicting how crime has changed from its infancy to the standards that are withheld today. This is an extraordinary feat and one that crime fans will pour over for hours on end. I know I have! So, go on! Dive in and find out about your favourite authors - and maybe discover a few new ones at the same time! Enjoy!" - Crime Squad "If you're into crime fiction in any way, this deserves to be on your shelves alongside Steinbrunner & Penzler's Encyclopedia of Mystery and Detective Fiction.' " - Bear Alley Books "[A] truly magisterial work...Many congratulations are due to Professor Forshaw and his army of contributors (numbering over 50 though the late Susannah Yager seems to go un-credited) for a job well done...I look forward to the second edition with anticipation." - Getting Away With Murder "A wide ranging encylopaedia, with contributions from practitioners, critics and academics... It is scholarly, well informed and full of unexpected tidbits." - Literary Review "Crime collectors will want to know of a new encyclopaedia British Crime Writing, which looks set to become the standard work of reference on the subject." - Book and Magazine Collector "Forshaw (Rough Guide to Crime Fiction) has assembled a good-sized team of contributors-including some of Britain's leading crime writers-to provide about 475 authoritative entries on British crime writers, magazines, and films, as well as major British fictional detectives such as Holmes and Marple and topics like 'thrillers' and 'tart noir.' The signed entries average about 1200 words in length and include lists of selected works by the authors and their web sites if available. ...Bottom Line: This is the most comprehensive overview available of British crime writing. While other works provide longer articles and include international authors-two examples come to mind, Scribner's Mystery & Suspense Writers and Gale's massive Dictionary of Literary Biography-their focus isn't contemporary British writing, as is the case here." - Library Journal "This encyclopedia should be an attractive, useful addition to public and academic libraries. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-level undergraduates and above; general readers." - Choice "...a remarkably comprehensive book of reference...A preliminary Guide to Related Topics (such as Golden Age Crime Fiction and Television), many portraits and other illustrations, a substantial Bibliography (including journals and web sites) and an excellent index make this an indispensable work of reference." - Reference Reviews
About the Author
Barry Forshaw is the editor of Crime Time magazine; he is the crime fiction reviewer for The Independent, The Express, Publishing News, and The Times and author of The Rough Guide to Crime Fiction.