Category Archives: Adrian Hyland

Open Your Mind*

A recent powerful post from Marina Sofia at Finding Time to Write has got me thinking about the dangers of arrogance about one’s point of view and perspective. Before I go any further, let me urge you to take a few moments and read her excellent post. Oh, and you’ll want to have a look at her excellent blog while you’re there. Fine reviews, lovely ‘photos, and fascinating discussion await you.  Don’t worry; I’ll wait.

Back now? Thanks. All of us like to think we’re right, but the fact is, there are times when we’re wrong. All of us. It’s part of being human. If we’re unwilling to concede that, and unwilling to be open to others’ views, we never learn anything. In fact, that willingness to be wrong, and to be critical of our own motives and research findings is an important part of any Ph.D. candidate’s preparation. Research goes forward as people conduct studies, produce results, and have those findings reviewed by others. That process can sometimes mean that one’s results are supported. But it also sometimes means that they are refuted, even proven wrong. And that is an important part of moving forward. We make progress as ideas are put forward, tested, and either found correct or reshaped.

That’s certainly true in real life, and we see the cost of blind arrogance in crime fiction, too. If a sleuth has one particular idea about a crime, and is unwilling to be open to other possibilities, then the crime may never be solved. That sort of arrogance may not make for an appealing character, but it can add tension to a story.

For instance, Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes is a firm believer in testing theories about a crime instead of assuming things. In The Hound of the Baskervilles, for instance, Holmes says,
 

‘‘There is nothing more stimulating than a case where everything goes against you.’’
 

He does have a high opinion of his skills as a detective, but he is open to being proved wrong. And he gets quite impatient with the detectives of Scotland Yard, who latch onto a theory of a crime and are unwilling to entertain any other possible explanation.

Fans of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot will know that he also has, shall we say, a high opinion of his own skills. But he is the first to admit when he has been wrong. More than once in the stories that feature him, he’s the one who calls himself out for being blind to the truth. There’s an interesting case of arrogance in one of his investigations, The Murder on the Links. In that novel, Paul Renauld has been stabbed, and his body discovered on a golf course near his property. M. Giraud of the Sûreté investigates the murder, and he has a very clear perspective on what happened and how to look into the matter. Because of his unwillingness to consider any other point of view or possible explanation, he misses some vital clues, and ends up arresting the wrong person. He also ends up thoroughly annoying Poirot, who has another idea about what happened…

Jussi Adler-Olsen’s Mercy (AKA The Keeper of Lost Causes) introduces his sleuth, Copenhagen homicide detective Carl Mørck. In the novel, he’s been assigned to head up a new department, ‘Department Q,’ that will focus on cold cases. In part, it’s a political move to show that the police are not lax or neglectful. The first case Mørck and his assistant, Hafez al-Assad, investigate is the five-year-old disappearance of promising politician Merete Lynggaard. It was always thought that she went overboard in a tragic ferry accident, but there’s now some evidence to suggest that she might still be alive. If so, she may be in grave danger. As Mørck looks into the case, he finds several areas where the original investigator, Børge Bak, didn’t follow up on leads that didn’t support the official theory of accident. It’s not that he’s particularly lazy or incompetent; it’s more that he didn’t focus on what he thought was unimportant. And when Mørck confronts him with his blindness to other possibilities, Bak’s not happy about it. He’s
 

‘…a detective with a capital D.’
 

So he’s upset when he is shown that he missed some important things because of what you might call arrogance about what he thought had happened.

Gianrico Carofiglio’s Involuntary Witness features his sleuth, attorney Guido Guerrieri, who lives and works in Bari. In this story, he gets a new client, Abdou Thiam. It seems that Thiam, a Senegalese immigrant, has been arrested for the abduction and murder of nine-year-old Francesco Rubino. There’s evidence against Thiam, too. For one thing, he knew the victim. For another, although he can account for his movements on the day of the murder, there is other evidence that he was in the area of the crime at the time the boy was taken. Thiam claims that he’s innocent, although he doesn’t believe he’ll be treated fairly. In fact, he’s resigned himself to prison. Guerrieri agrees to defend Thiam and goes to work. As it turns out, one person’s beliefs, and refusal to consider that those beliefs might be wrong, is an important part of this case, and it’s not until Guerrieri discovers that fact that he’s able to get to the truth.

In Adrian Hyland’s Gunshot Road, Aboriginal Community Police Officer (ACPO) Emily Tempest joins the investigation of the murder of geologist Albert ‘Doc’ Ozolins. According to the evidence, the victim had gotten into a drunken quarrel with John ‘Wireless’ Petherbridge and was killed shortly afterwards. So, the police believe that Wireless’ is the killer. In fact, Tempest’s boss, Bruce Cockburn, is completely convinced of that explanation. So, he refuses to listen when Tempest tries to tell him about some evidence that suggests another explanation. Tempest is strong-willed, and she’s unwilling to obey Cockburn’s order to do as she’s told and not go asking questions on her own. On the one hand, Tempest pays dearly for investigating on her own. On the other hand, Cockburn’s refusal to consider that he might be wrong costs the investigation a great deal.

And that’s the thing about being unwilling to consider other perspectives. It’s usually not fun to be wrong, especially if one’s shown up in public. But we all are wrong sometimes. And even when we’re not ‘officially’ wrong, we don’t get a broad, accurate perspective on things unless we are willing to consider other points of view and other possible ways of thinking.

Thank you, Marina Sofia, for the inspiration!

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is the title of a song by Melissa Etheridge.

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Filed under Adrian Hyland, Agatha Christie, Arthur Conan Doyle, Gianrico Carofiglio, Jussi Adler-Olsen

Strut My Stuff, My Stuff is so Shiny*

An interesting review of Donald Henderson’s A Voice Like Velvet at FictionFan’s excellent review blog has got me thinking about the all-too-human wish for things. This novel’s focus is Ernest Bisham, a radio broadcaster who is also a burglar. I admit I haven’t read the novel (yet), but I intend to. You’ll want to read FictionFan’s fine review of it to get a sense of the story. And while you’re there, you’ll want to check out the rest of that top-notch blog. It’s one of my must-visits.

Batham doesn’t take things because he wants to be rich. He takes them for the thrill of doing so, and because he likes that sensation of ‘Ooh, shiny!’ And he’s not the only crime-fiction character who feels that way.

For instance, Wilkie Collins’ The Moonstone begins as Colonel John Herncastle steals a diamond called the Moonstone from a palace in India. He doesn’t take it because he’s desperate for money; he takes because he is acquisitive. Legend has it that anyone who disturbs the temple by taking that diamond will be cursed, and so will anyone who ends up with the stone. As the story goes on, we see how that dire prediction plays out. Herncastle bequeaths the stone to his niece, Rachel Verinder, with the proviso that it be given to her on her eighteenth birthday. Herncastle and Rachel’s mother, Lady Julia Verinder, have had a rift for quite some time, so there is talk that his gift is actually a curse. And so it seems to be. First, the stone is stolen. Then, one of the housemaids disappears, and is later found dead. There are other incidents, too. Sergeant Cuff investigates, and slowly, over the course of two years, traces the stone and learns who stole it and why.

In Agatha Christie’s Cards on the Table, we are introduced to Anne Meredith. She is among eight people who are invited to a dinner party at the home of the eccentric Mr. Shaitana. This isn’t a ‘typical’ dinner party though. Shaitana has invited four people (of whom Anne is one) who he believes have gotten away with murder. He also has invited four sleuths, among whom are Hercule Poirot and detective novelist Ariadne Oliver. During the meal, Shaitana drops hints about the sorts of murders he suspects have been committed. After dinner, everyone settles down to play bridge. At some point in the evening, someone stabs Shaitana. The only possible suspects are the four people Shaitana believes are murderers. Poirot and the other sleuths investigate to find out who the killer is. And they find that each suspect was, indeed, mixed up in a possible murder. In Anne’s case, the victim was a woman to whom she was companion, and who died of poison. At the time, it was believed that this death was accidental: the woman ingested hat paint instead of her medication. But, was it an accident? It turns out that Anne Meredith has a habit of taking things, not because she is desperate for them, but because she wants to have them. Was that enough to drive her to kill – twice?

As Erle Stanley Gardner’s The Case of the Shoplifter’s Shoe opens, Perry Mason and Della Street duck into a department store to get out of a sudden rainstorm. There, they witness a store security officer arrest Sarah Breel for shoplifting. It seems that this is a regular habit of hers; she sees things that she wants, and she takes them because she wants them. Her niece, Virginia Trent, usually goes shopping with her to avoid any trouble, but this time, the two got separated for just long enough for Sarah to take advantage of the opportunity. Mason gets involved with the family when some valuable diamonds go missing, and then there’s a murder. Aunt Sarah is suspected of the theft and the possibly the murder, and Mason goes to work to find out the truth.

Adrian Hyland’s Gunshot Road features Aboriginal Community Police Officer (ACPO) Emily Tempest. In the novel, she investigates the death of a geologist named Albert ‘Doc’ Ozolins. On the surface, it looks as though he was killed as the result of a drunken quarrel. But Emily sees little pieces of evidence that suggest otherwise, and she decides to investigate. In one sub-plot of this novel, she happens to be in the small town of Bluebush, when a local electronics store owner rushes out of his shop, complaining that someone has stolen a valuable iPod. It’s not long before Emily identifies the thief as fifteen-year-old Danny Brambles. She is a friend of his family, and she knows that Danny is not a violent, dangerous person. He didn’t take the iPod out of greed, either; he saw it and wanted it, and couldn’t resist the urge to take it. And there’s the fact that this particular shop owner isn’t exactly a fan of Aboriginal people. Emily knows that if she arrests Danny, he could go to jail, which would do him much more harm than good. At the same time, he stole from the store. So, with a little tact and finesse, she gets the store owner to take the iPod back and not pursue the matter, in exchange for which Danny will do chores and work off his debt to the owner.

And then there’s Patricia Abbott’s Eve Moran, whom we meet in Concrete Angel. All her life, Eve has wanted to acquire. And she’s been willing to do whatever it takes, including murder, to get what she wants, whether it’s jewelry, men, clothes, or something else. Her daughter, Christine, has been raised in this toxic environment, and has a very dysfunctional relationship with her mother. Everything begins to change when Christine sees that her younger brother is getting drawn into the same toxic world.  Now, she’s going to have to find a way to free both her brother and herself from their mother, and it’s not going to be easy.

There is something about acquiring things that has an irresistible appeal for some people. That trait can have all sorts of terrible consequences. It can also lend layers to character development.

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is a line from Lin-Manual Miranda’s Shiny.

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Filed under Adrian Hyland, Agatha Christie, Donald Henderson, Erle Stanley Gardner, Patricia Abbott, Wilkie Collins

It’s a Brave New World*

In the last decades, police forces, universities, businesses, and many other organizations, have become increasingly diverse. That process hasn’t been easy, and, of course, it’s still ongoing. But many, many groups of all sorts are more open than they were.

The process of diversification starts with one person (e.g. the first non-white person, the first woman, the first gay person). And that person (or those people) face real challenges. For one thing, if you’re the first/only non-white/woman/etc…, were you hired because of your ability, or because of your background? For another, plenty of people may resent your presence. That, too, can be difficult, to say the very least.

The challenge of being the first/only in a group is formidable in real life. In fiction, it can add an interesting layer of character development, as well as tension. It can even form a part of the plot line.

For example, in Adrian Hyland’s Gunshot Road, Aboriginal Community Police Officer (ACPO) Emily Tempest becomes part of a police investigation team that’s looking into the murder of geologist Albert ‘Doc’ Ozolins. The police theory is that he was murdered after a drunken quarrel with John ‘Wireless’ Petherbridge, and that Wireless is the killer. But Tempest isn’t sure that’s true. So, she starts to ask questions. Her temporary boss, Bruce Cockburn, wants her to ‘toe the line,’ but that’s not her style, so she perseveres. And, in the end, she finds out the truth. Woven through this novel is the fact that Tempest is both female and half-Aborigine, while her new colleagues are neither. It’s hard for everyone to get used to the new order of things, and it doesn’t make the investigation any easier for anyone.

Adrian McKinty’s The Cold, Cold Ground introduces his protagonist, Sean Duffy. The novel takes place in 1981, in the midst of The Troubles. Duffy is a member of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC), posted to Carrickfergus. His job is complicated by the fact that he is a Catholic in that almost completely Protestant police force. On the one hand, it’s in the RUC’s (and the government’s) interest to have a Catholic on the force. On the other, it’s very difficult for Duffy. Many Protestants (including some of his colleagues) won’t trust him because he’s Catholic. That makes it very hard to do his job. He’s not particularly welcome in a lot of Catholic areas, either, since he’s a member of the RUC, and, therefore, a traitor. Add to that the fact that the locals are not big fans of any member of the police force, and you have an extremely challenging situation for Duffy. In the midst of all this, though, he’s still expected to do his job.

Karin Slaughter’s Cop Town takes place in 1974 Atlanta. Maggie Lawson and Kate Murphy are police officers in what is a very male-dominated force. That in itself makes things difficult for them. When a fellow officer, Don Wesley, is killed, it looks at first as though the killer is someone the police have nicknamed The Shooter, who’s already killed other police officers. Lawson and Murphy are as eager to catch this killer as anyone else is, and they soon find out some things that don’t quite match the police reports. And, gradually, they learn of some secrets that some people have been keeping. Things become quite dangerous for them, and it’s clear that they’re going to have to catch this killer quickly if they’re going to stay alive. Lawson and Murphy are not the first female members of the Atlanta Police, but they endure their share of sexism. And, interestingly, some of the bullying comes from more veteran female police officers – some of whom were the first on the force. It’s interesting to see how that impacts the way they treat Lawson and Murphy.

Lynda La Plante also addresses some of these issues in her Jane Tennison thrillers. These stories, which begin in 1973, are, if you will, prequels to her Tennison series. In them, Tennison is brand-new on the police force, and facing the challenges of being a woman in a male-dominated work environment. She has to prove herself to be, as the saying goes, twice as good to get half as far. It’s not easy, and it all takes a toll on Tennison. There are other stories, too, that explore what it’s like to be the first/only woman on a police team (right, fans of Robert Gott’s The Holiday Murders and The Port Fairy Murders?)

And then there’s Ausma Zehanat Khan’s The Unquiet Dead. This novel introduces Inspector Esa Khattak of the Community Policing Section (CPS) of the Canadian federal government. This group is concerned with anti-bigotry and community relations issues. So, its focus is on hate crimes, among other things. Khattak was tapped to head this group in part because of his detective skills, and in part because he is Muslim. There’s been a lot of anti-Muslim sentiment, and the Canadian government is still smarting from the public relations disaster of the Maher Arar case. Choosing a Muslim is an important part of the government’s determination to demonstrate a renewed commitment to diversity. Khattak isn’t stupid; he knows that this is one of the reasons he was chosen. And it becomes all the more important when the body of Christopher Drayton is found at the bottom of the Scarborough (Ontario) Bluffs. At first, it’s unclear why the CPS should be involved in this case. But then, it comes out that Drayton may actually have been Dražen Krstić, a notorious war criminal known as the butcher of Srebrenica. If that’s true, then this could spell real trouble for the government. Why was a war criminal allowed to live in Canada? And why was he never prosecuted? Khattak can’t be completely objective about this case, since he spent time in Bosnia during the war, and since he’s Muslim. So, he gets his assistant, Sergeant Rachel Getty, involved in the investigation. He tells her as little as possible, because he wants her to be objective. As the two of them work the case, they find several possible accounts of what happened to Drayton/Krstić. And they find that several dark secrets have been kept buried.

It’s not always easy being the first/only member of a group who’s of a different religion, or is non-white, or is female, or is…  But it’s an important part of making groups like the police more diverse. And it can add a layer of conflict and character development to a story.

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is a line from Steve Miller’s Brave New World.

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Filed under Adrian Hyland, Adrian McKinty, Ausma Zehanat Khan, Karin Slaughter, Lynda La Plante, Robert Gott

Livin’ On The Edge*

Anyone who’s ever lived in wildfire/bush fire country can tell you that, when even a small fire starts, things can turn very, very bad, very, very quickly. So, there’s often a lot of tension as everyone looks at things such as prevailing winds, terrain, availability of firefighting staff, and size of the blaze. Wise people take precautions, in case they need to evacuate. After all, there may only be 10-30 minutes to evacuate once the order is given. That’s not the time to discuss who will take what, or where to go. By the way, if you want to read a realistic account of what this situation is like, read Adrian Hyland’s Kinglake-350. G’wan, read it. Admittedly, it’s not crime fiction, but it’s such a good fit here that I decided to mention it, anyway.

That tension, as people wait to see what will happen, is almost palpable. In real life, it can be a big challenge. In fiction, it can add an engaging layer of suspense. And crime writers have used it in several different ways.

For instance, Agatha Christie’s Taken at the Flood begins in Hercule Poirot’s club. Everyone’s taking shelter there against World War II air raids, and it’s not in the least clear how things will pan out. So, there’s a lot of tension. In part to break that tension, Poirot listens to a story told by fellow member Major Porter. It seems he knew a Robert Underhay who died in Africa. Underhay’s widow, Rosaleen, later married Gordon Cloade. But Porter’s story suggests that Underhay might still be alive. This possibility becomes crucial later, when Cloade is killed in a bombing. He dies without having made a will, which in most cases would mean Rosaleen inherits all of his considerable wealth. But if her first husband is alive, that would mean she couldn’t inherit. And that’s exactly what Cloade’s family wants, for various reasons. So, Poirot’s interest is piqued when he learns that a stranger named Enoch Arden has been killed in Warmsley Vale, where most of the Cloads lived. Arden hinted that he knew Underhay was still alive, and that could certainly have something to do with his murder. Poirot travels to the village and slowly learns the truth about Arden, the Cloades, and Rosaleen.

Dorothy L. Sayers’ The Nine Tailors takes place mostly in the East Anglia village of Fenchurch Saint Paul. When a car accident strands Lord Peter Wimsey and his assistant/valet, Mervyn Bunter, the village’s vicar, Reverend Theodore Venables, rescues the men and lodges them in the rectory until the car is fixed. That’s how Wimsey ends up getting involved in a case involving an unknown ‘extra’ corpse in a grave, some missing emeralds, a long-ago robbery, and change-ringing. In one plot thread of this novel, heavy rains bring on a flood. Venables wants to do what he can to save the villagers, and there are some very tense moments as everyone watches and waits to see how high the waters will rise, and how severe the damage will be.

Rebecca Cantrell’s A Trace of Smoke introduces Berlin crime reporter Hannah Vogel. It’s 1931, and the Great Depression has meant that everyone is desperate for money. Hannah herself has very little, although she has enough to eat and keep her home. What’s more, there’s a great deal of tension as everyone waits to see whether and to what extent the Nazis will get power. They’re already a force to be reckoned with, and people know that it’s best not to get in their proverbial sights. Against this very suspenseful background Vogel learns that her brother, Ernst, has been found dead. She wants to know why, and, if he was murdered, who killed him. So, she starts to ask questions. She’ll have to work very quietly, so as not to call too much attention to herself. But she’s determined to find answers. The background tension to this novel adds a real layer of atmosphere, as people watch and wait and wonder what will happen to the country.

Adrian McKinty’s The Cold, Cold Ground is the first of his series to feature Sean Duffy. He’s that rare thing, a Catholic member of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC). The novel takes place in 1981, in the midst of the Troubles, when everyone’s nerves are frayed from the constant conflict. People do try to go about their lives, but they watch and wait to see what ‘the other side’ will do, and where the next attacks might be. There aren’t many really trustworthy people, and for Duffy, it’s especially difficult. For one thing, almost all of his colleagues are Protestant, reason enough for suspicion on both sides. For another, the public is suspicious, too. He’s a police officer, which is a problem in itself. Then, he’s a Catholic in the RUC; hence, he’s a traitor to a lot of Catholics. And Protestant civilians won’t trust him, either. All of that undercurrent of tension, as people wait to see what will happen, adds to the story as Duffy works to solve two murders that seem to be related.

And then there’s Peter Temple’s Truth.  That novel takes place during a siege of brush fires that are threatening the state of Victoria. It’s an extremely tense time, and it’s not at all clear how much damage there will be, which way the fires will go, and so on. Everyone is very much on edge as people watch and wait. Against this backdrop, Inspector Stephen Villani and his team work to solve the murder of an unknown woman whose body was found in a very posh apartment.  Meanwhile, they’re also investigating the killings of three drug dealers whose bodies were found in another part of the Melbourne area. The brush fires are not the central focus of the novel. But the suspense they cause adds much to the novel.

Watching and waiting, and not knowing how things will pan out, can be extremely hard to deal with in real life. In a novel, though, that suspense can add much to a plot if it’s not done in a melodramatic way. Which examples have stayed with you?

ps. The ‘photo is of a wildfire evacuation map. Red means a mandatory evacuation. Purple is voluntary/evacuation warning. Everyone who’s anywhere near a wildfire pays close attention to those maps, and the tension often builds as people watch and wait to see what will happen on their streets.

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is the title of an Aerosmith song.

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Filed under Adrian Hyland, Adrian McKinty, Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers, Peter Temple, Rebecca Cantrell

As I Recall, It Ended Much Too Soon*

If your TBR is anything like mine, you do not need to add to it. There are always so many fine novels coming out that it’s impossible to ever read them all. And then there are those excellent novels from past years that sit on the ‘I really will read this’ list for too long.

That said, though, there are some series that I, for one, wish would be continued. I understand all about the vagaries of publishing and the demands of authors personal lives. There’s also the matter of what the author would like to do. But still, here are just a few authors I hope will/wish could add to their series.

One is Adrian Hyland. His novels Diamond Dove (Moonlight Downs) and Gunshot Road feature Aboriginal Community Police Officer (ACPO) Emily Tempest. She’s half-Aborigine, half-white, and was brought up in the small Moonlight Downs community. After an absence of several years, she returns, and immediately gets involved in murder cases. The books have met with a great deal of critical acclaim (Hyland won the Ned Kelly Award for Best First Fiction for Diamond Dove), and they’ve been very highly regarded among readers. And yet, there hasn’t been a third Emily Tempest novel. At least, there hasn’t to my knowledge (so someone, please put me right if I’m wrong about that). I would love to know what happens next in Emily Tempest’s life, and I hope there’ll be another in this series.

Ernesto Mallo has written, as far as I know, two novels featuring Buenos Aires police detective Venancio ‘Perro’ Lescano. The stories take place in the late 1970s – a very dangerous time to be in Argentina. The military is in firm control of the government, and has no compunctions about getting rid of anyone who would appear to disagree with their hard-right agenda. Against this backdrop, Lescano tries to simply be a good police detective and do his job well. But that often puts him up against some very dangerous forces. So far, Needle in a Haystack and Sweet Money are the only two Lescano novels. I truly hope that there’ll be more.

Hilary Mantel has gotten a great deal of praise for her two novels, Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies. In fact, Mantel won the Man Booker prize for Wolf Hall. These stories detail the early life, rise, and fall of Thomas Cromwell, who was at one time a close confidant of King Henry VIII. As you’ll know, he fell from grace and was executed in 1540. The novels give the reader an ‘inside look’ at court intrigue, Cromwell’s personal life, and the atmosphere of the times. The third novel in this planned trilogy, The Mirror and the Light, is, from what I understand, in progress. I’ve not seen a publication date for it, yet, although I did read that it may be 2019 before we see this release. Mantel has contended with health issues, among other things, but still, I do hope The Mirror and the Light is published sooner rather than later. It’s been a wait…

In Domingo Villar’s Water Blue Eyes, we are introduced to Vigo police detective Inspector Leo Caldas. Along with his police duties, he also hosts a regular radio show called Patrolling the Waves. It’s an attempt to connect the police with citizens, and allows people to call in and ‘talk with a cop’ about their concerns and questions. Caldas features in Death on a Galician Shore as well. But, to my knowledge, there hasn’t been a third Leo Caldas novel. I understand that Cruces de Piedra (Stone Crosses) was to have been published a few years ago, but I haven’t seen it available (at least in the US). I’d love to know if it’s available elsewhere. And I look forward to reading the next Leo Caldas novel if there is one.

Nelson Brunanski is the author of, among other things, three novels featuring John ‘Bart’ Bartowski, who owns a fishing lodge in the northern part of Saskatchewan. He and his wife, Rosie, live further south in the province, in a small town called Crooked Lake. In Crooked Lake, Frost Bite, and Burnt Out, Bart gets involved in investigating mysteries, even though he’s reluctant to do so. These novels have a strong sense of small-town Saskatchewan, and are also character studies. I would like to read more about Bart and his friends and family.

There are, sadly, some series that didn’t continue because their authors passed away. That’s the case with, for instance, Scott Young’s series featuring RCMP police detective ‘Matteesie’ Kitologitak. Both Murder in a Cold Climate and The Shaman’s Knife offer interesting looks at life in Canada’s Far North. They also are police procedurals that show how the RCMP operates, especially in rural areas. I wish there had been more novels in this series.

Authors may choose not to continue a series. Or, publishers may decline to support the continuation of a series. There may be other reasons, too, for which a series might not continue, or for which there might be a delay in a series. But for readers, it can be difficult to wait for that next novel. Even with people’s TBRs as they are. These are just a few of my ideas. Which series would you like to see continue?

 
 
 

*NOTE: The title of this post is a line from the Four Seasons’ December 1963 (Oh What a Night).

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Filed under Adrian Hyland, Domingo Villar, Ernesto Mallo, Hilary Mantel, Nelson Brunanski, Scott Young