David Willis McCullough’s Great Detectives-A Century of the Best Mysteries From England and America.

Overview: The detective genre has been a–sometimes guilty–pleasure for many people throughout the ages. So how does one find a new author when his/her mainstays are all out of new material? Anthologies seem to work quite well. The question then becomes: what do we have to look forward to in this book?

Story Telling: In this short story collection we have samples from Agatha Christie to Raymond Chandler, and two novels. One from Ross McDonald and the other by Ruth Rendell.

Dislikes: There were only two stories that I hated in this collection. Those were Israel Zangwill’s “The Big Bow Mystery”, and Raymond Chandler’s “Trouble is My Business.” Mr. Zangwill’s story was too progressive in ideology for my tastes. And Mr. Chandler was too nihilistic.

Likes: Several of these stories acted as a good advertisement for their authors.

Favorite Stories: One of my favorites was Donald E. Westlake’s “Never Shake a Family Tree.” Though, Ray Bradbury’s “Yesterday I lived” and Ed McBain’s “Sadie When She Died” came really close to winning it as well.

Conclusion: While I didn’t enjoy Agatha Christie’s detective in this collection as much as Miss Marple, this was still a great book. Pick it up for you mystery fan. Or enjoy it yourself.


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