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View Diary: Character names by Arthur Conan Doyle (65 comments)

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  •  An alternative: Dashiell Hammet (1+ / 0-)
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    I read Sherlock Holmes as a teenager. I found the puzzles and twist and turns interesting.

    But lately, I think Conan Doyle wrote fantasy novels. They did not reflect reality. There were elements of truth to them, some people actually acted this way, but by and large most people did not.

    [Political aside: like Romney and his visions]

    I like reading Dashiell Hammett. He actually did private detective work. His novels and stories include interesting people. Some were homosexuals. The women were often involved in either the crime or solution. (Interestingly he did not have children in his stories).

    Dashiell wrote in part as a response to Conan and his ilk, their writings had little to do with actual police work or how crimes are solved. Dashiell was one of the first to actually get closer to describing reality.


    Doyle was a writer in the form of Mark Twain. His prose was clear and evocative and his plotting was straight forward and involving.
    Exactly the issue: real life isn't very straightforward or clear. Often involving unsettling aspects.

    I would recommend reading the Red Harvest, a tale of "solving a crime" in a corrupt town - based on his experience of Butte Montana.

    •  I just read Chandler's 'Simple Art of Murder', (0+ / 0-)

      which is a marvelous essay everyone should read.

      Chandler praises Hammett's mastery of the "American language", his adherence to reality, and because he "gave murder back to the kind of people that commit it for reasons, not just to provide a corpse."

      "Every man has a right to utter what he thinks truth" Samuel Johnson

      by Brecht on Sat Nov 24, 2012 at 08:21:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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