Crime-Mystery-Detective Stories Criticism: Diversity In The Crime-Mystery-Detective Story - Essay

Michael Nava (essay date 1989)

(Short Story Criticism)

SOURCE: Nava, Michael. Introduction to Finale, edited by Michael Nava, pp. 7-10. Boston: Alyson Publications, 1989.

[In the following introduction to an anthology of crime-mystery-detective stories by gay and lesbian authors, Nava provides an overview of the selections included in the volume.]

Though it is the bastard child of literature, the mystery has always attracted first-class writers. I came to mysteries in college through Jorge Luis Borges, whose ficciones frequently employed the conventions of the mystery for metaphysical ends. Indeed, one of the first mystery writers I read was G. K. Chesterton, to whose Father Brown stories Borges acknowledged his...

(The entire section is 929 words.)

Victoria A. Brownworth (essay date 1995)

(Short Story Criticism)

SOURCE: Brownworth, Victoria A. Introduction to Out for Blood: Tales of Mystery and Suspense by Women, edited by Victoria A. Brownworth, pp. ix-xiv. Chicago: Third Side Press, 1995.

[In the following introduction to an anthology of crime-mystery-detective stories written by women, Brownworth considers the contributions of female authors to the development of the genre, and provides an overview of selections included in the volume.]

I have always, since I was a young child, loved mysteries—suspense, detective stories, ghost tales. The first mystery I ever read was The Ghost of Blackwood Hall by Carolyn Keene; at eight, it was my introduction to Nancy Drew and...

(The entire section is 2017 words.)

Priscilla L. Walton (essay date May 1998)

(Short Story Criticism)

SOURCE: Walton, Priscilla L. “Form and Forum: The Agency of Detectives and the Venue of the Short Story.” Narrative 6, no. 2 (May 1998): 123-39.

[In the following essay, Walton argues that the short story anthology is an ideal medium through which lesser-known women crime-mystery-detective authors can gain a popular readership in an industry that often favors male authors.]

Long shot at that jumping sign,
Visible shivers running down my spine;
Cut to the baby taking off her clothes,
Close up of the sign that says “we never close.”
You snatch a tune and you match a cigarette;
She pulls their eyes out with a face like a magnet,
I don't know how much more of this I...

(The entire section is 8417 words.)

Laurie R. King and Lawrence W. Raphael (essay date 2001)

(Short Story Criticism)

SOURCE: King, Laurie R., and Lawrence W. Raphael. Forward and Introduction to Criminal Kabbalah: An Intriguing Anthology of Jewish Mystery & Detective Fiction, edited by Lawrence W. Raphael, pp. 7-8; 11-16. Woodstock, Vt.: Jewish Lights Publishing, 2001.

[In the following forward and introduction to a Jewish crime-mystery-detective anthology, King and Raphael define the term kabbalah and discuss the connections between Jewish mystical thought and the crime-mystery-detective genre.]


Criminal Kabbalah, the Kabbalah of crime—what does an esoteric form of mysticism have to do with common lawbreakers?...

(The entire section is 2455 words.)