Janet Laurence Analysis


(Masterpieces of Fiction, Detective and Mystery Edition)

Janet Laurence has created both a culinary mystery series and a historical mystery series. The Darina Lisle series features an independent cookbook writer, which allows Laurence to showcase her expertise as a food writer. Her Canaletto series brings a somewhat lesser known painter and his contribution to English history to the attention of the reading public. Her novels have received critical praise from major publications such as Library Journal and Booklist.


(Masterpieces of Fiction, Detective and Mystery Edition)

Brainard, Dulcy. Review of Canaletto and the Case of Westminster Bridge, by Janet Laurence. Publishers Weekly 245, no. 19 (May 11, 1998): 53. Reviewer praises the characterization and “exuberant” narrative in the first book in the Canaletto series.

Brainard, Dulcy. Review of Death at the Table, by Janet Laurence. Publishers Weekly 244, no. 7 (February 17, 1991): 213. A mixed review of this work in the Darina Lisle series, which says the work is enjoyable for its culinary flavorings and sprightly writing but is critical of the somewhat abrupt and methodical ending.

Laurence, Janet, and Graham Lawler. Writing Crime Fiction: Making Crime Pay. Abergele, Conwy County, England: Studymates, 2007. Introduction to the genre that contains Laurence’s ideas on how to include clues in the narrative and how to develop a mystery.

Links, J. G. Canaletto: A Venetian Artist Abroad, 1746-1765. New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2007. Recounts Canaletto’s activities in England during the nine years he spent there. Provides information on the real-life Canaletto to contrast with the fictionalized version.

Menzie, Karol V. “These Culinary Mysteries Will Eat at You.” Sun Sentinel, June 9, 1994, p. 1. Article discusses the popularity of culinary mysteries, which tend to be less violent and attract women readers. Laurence is noted as being among the culinary writers who include poison among their murder methods.