06/07/2017

Golden Dozens, cont'd

Nobody asked for it but here they are nevertheless - my own twelve favorite crime/mystery stories! Hard as I tried to be more inclusive and contemporary than the 1950 jury, my list reflects my strong preference for vintage crime; the earliest story - which also happens to be the single French-language entry - is more than thirty years old. Also, despite my criticisms of the original Golden Dozen for being too biased towards traditional mysteries my own list heavily favors the genre too, though it makes room for two crime stories, one thriller and a story that defies any categorization. Finally, I had not realized until now the thing I have for Christmas mysteries - two of them feature in this list and I was about to add a third (Stanley Ellin's Death on Christmas's Eve) when I thought it might be a little too much. The keen-eyed will notice that my list has no title in common with the 1950 one but that's because 1°) I tried to be original - you'll tell me how well I've succeeded - 2°) I haven't read all of the stories in it and didn't rate the ones I read as highly as the jurors did*. But enough talk, here it is and feel free to use the comment sections to give your opinion and if needed throw me some tomatoes!

On Christmas Day in the Morning (Margery Allingham)
The Glass Bridge (Robert Arthur)
Blind Man's Hood (John Dickson Carr)
The Eye of Apollo (G.K. Chesterton)
Triangle at Rhodes (Agatha Christie)
The Adventure of the Naval Treaty (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle)
Moonlight Gardener (Robert L. Fish)
The Answer (Bruce M. Fisher)
Lonely Place (C.B. Gilford)
The Unlikely Demise of Cousin Claude (Charlotte MacLeod)
Lettres de mon malin (Pierre Siniac)
The Fall of the Coin (Ruth Rendell)

*The greatness of The Hands of Ottermole still eludes me to this day, despite Boucher's praise and Doug Greene's attempts at converting me. Naboth's Vineyard I find to be one the weakest entries in the Uncle Abner canon; The Age of Miracles would have been a much better choice. 

1 commentaire:

TomCat a dit…

Your inclusion of Arthur's "The Glass Bridge" pleasantly surprised me. Not a story you would expect on a best-of list, but surely deserves to be on one. I also approve of Christie's "Triangle at Rhodes," which would be a candidate for my list. A list that would have a strong bias in favor of locked room mysteries.

Good to see that you stirring back to life, Xavier.