John Dickson Carr

Sladists are media maniacs...I mean lovers. Movies, Books, Music & Sports are all here.

John Dickson Carr

Postby raasnio » Sat Feb 16, 2008 12:16 am

I'm a bit over halfway through The Four False Weapons. I've never read anything from this author before now, but I remember hearing praise for him on these forums.

What strikes me, though, is just how funny it is and how well written the dialog is. I have laughed out loud at least 7 times.

I'm quite impressed with it so far. After this one I have The Emperor's Snuff Box to read.
User avatar
raasnio
techno-guru / co-administrator
 
Posts: 887
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 2:24 am
Location: KC, MO

Postby Slade » Sat Feb 16, 2008 1:13 am

raasnio,

Enjoy. Here's the main site on Carr. Click on one of the faces, and look at the covers. They'll take you back to a bygone time.

http://jdcarr.com/

And what you're reading will prepare you for CRUCIFIED.

Slade
User avatar
Slade
 
Posts: 3073
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:42 am

Postby raasnio » Sat Feb 16, 2008 2:30 am

Slade,

Do you have a favorite character from his novels?
User avatar
raasnio
techno-guru / co-administrator
 
Posts: 887
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 2:24 am
Location: KC, MO

Postby Slade » Sat Feb 16, 2008 8:05 am

raasnio,

In this article...

http://www.chesterton.org/discover/who.html

...you'll find the following description of G.K. Chesterton:

This man who composed such profound and perfect lines as "The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried," stood 6’4" and weighed about 300 pounds, usually had a cigar in his mouth, and walked around wearing a cape and a crumpled hat, tiny glasses pinched to the end of his nose, swordstick in hand, laughter blowing through his moustache.

Carr turned Chesterton into Dr. Gideon Fell. He knew him well from the Detection Club.

Slade
User avatar
Slade
 
Posts: 3073
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:42 am

Postby Slade » Sat Feb 16, 2008 8:34 pm

raasnio,

Do you remember the joy of being a boy and discovering the world of the Hardy Boys? A world of tower treasures, twisted claws, disappearing floors, skeleton rocks, devil's paws, bombay boomerangs, and witchmaster's keys?

Most people grow up and put away such childish things, but for those who yearn to carry them into adulthood, there's an almost secret club to which you are knocking on the door.

The world of John Dickson Carr.

http://www.bitsofnews.com/content/view/4441/42/

If you can get your hands on one, or more, of his now mostly out of print books, there are few experiences more congenial than to sit, propped up on a couch, or in a comfy chair, with a hot cup of chocolate, reading John Dickson Carr.

http://stkarnick.com/blog2/2006/12/a_tr ... _carr.html

With Doyle, Chesterton, Christie, Queen, and Sayers, Carr is one of the greatest of all mystery writers.

That says it all.

http://www.mysterynet.com/books/testimony/carr.shtml

The world of John Dickson Carr. A world where bodies are found alone in hermetically sealed rooms, or in houses surrounded by unmarked snow or sand; where damsels walk into country houses and vanish like smoke; where a businessman can dive into a swimming pool and disappear; where rooms, buildings, streets, even whole centuries seem to vanish. An eerie world, where ghosts, vampires, and evil magicians seem real...

The flavor of these novels is created not only by their eerie atmosphere but also by Carr's antiquarianism. He loved old armor, clocks, fortune-telling cards, castles, and legends, and he worked such lore into his books.


Of course, if you get hooked - like moonflee has with Ed McBain - I'll be to blame for gobbling up a good chunk of your life (note the titles, and think Hardy Boys):

http://www.twbooks.co.uk/authors/jdcarr.html

1959 to 1961 was the crucible stretch in which Michael Slade was born. In the buildup to CRUCIFIED, you'll see why. Every writer is a product of what influenced him, and a huge influence on me was Carr, because he fused mystery and horror in my mind. Later, a jolt of electricity would bring that to life, the first time (around 1970) that I witnessed the young Alice Cooper strut on stage.

"The telephone is riiiingin'..."

Sir Kingsley Amis is a famous name in literary criticism. He was quite a character (and selected by Fleming's estate to write the first follow-up novel, COLONEL SUN, about James Bond):

http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/amis.htm

Here's his comment on John Dickson Carr:

http://www.geocities.com/hacklehorn/carr/amis.htm

The detective novels and stories of John Dickson Carr (1906-77) have received the highest praise without ever becoming either a popular success or a highbrow fad. He is the acknowledged master of that classic rarity, the tale of detection in which detection is seen to take place, the clues really are shared with the reader, and crimes of majestic and multifarious impossibility are shown at last to have been possible after all, if not always very plausible.

The detective story at its best consists of Sherlock Holmes stories, especially the first three volumes, the Father Brown stories (written by Chesterton), especially the first two volumes, half a dozen or more novels by Carr/Dickson (The Hollow Man, The Ten Teacups and The Reader is Warned besides those already mentioned), and some individual volumes and scattered scenes by other hands.


So, you're in good company.

Slade
User avatar
Slade
 
Posts: 3073
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:42 am

Postby raasnio » Sat Feb 16, 2008 11:17 pm

When I was very young I started reading Alfred Hitchcock & The Three Investigators and then moved on to Agatha Christie. After that alot of horror beginning with Stephen King.

I love mysteries. I'll be heading out to the used bookstores again when I can to hunt more of Carr's novels down.
User avatar
raasnio
techno-guru / co-administrator
 
Posts: 887
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 2:24 am
Location: KC, MO

Postby Slade » Sun Feb 17, 2008 1:01 am

raasnio,

Here's the one you want, and it's still available from Amazon UK:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Hollow-Man-Crim ... 0752851373

Slade
User avatar
Slade
 
Posts: 3073
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:42 am

Postby Slade » Sun Feb 17, 2008 2:10 am

raasnio,

If you want to have some visual fun in the same vein as Carr, see if you can track down this in KC:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonathan_Creek

Run down the episodes, and you'll see what I mean. For instance, "The Coonskin Cap":

After an awkward break-up some months ago, Jonathan and Carla — now married to the producer of a Crimewatch-like television show — unite to investigate the mysterious 'Daisy Chain' serial killer who wears a Davy Crockett hat and strangles women named after flowers. However, things take on a new dynamic when the killer shoots at police during a reconstruction of a murder and escapes from a locked room while the only window was in full view of those present. Later, a policewoman is strangled in the middle of a school gym from which the killer again had no means to escape.

Or "Danse Macabre":

A well-known horror writer is shot dead on Halloween by a man in a skeleton costume who subsequently takes her unconscious daughter hostage and escapes to the garage. The police surround the garage but when they open the door the killer has vanished, leaving only the daughter who has no memory of the incident.

Intriguing fun! It's a cult series. And with good reason!!:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jh ... ies211.xml

Slade
User avatar
Slade
 
Posts: 3073
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:42 am

Ahhhh . . . . . another dance down memory lane . . .

Postby Judy » Mon Feb 18, 2008 1:56 pm

Hi Everyone . . .
One of my fondest memories was discovering Nancy Drew, Judy Bolton, and Cherry Ames. As a young child I never felt the need to learn to read - most likely because my parents read to me . . . (one of my teachers sent a letter home to my parents to not read to me - if I recall correctly) so reading was a chore - not a pleasure . . . until I found mystery stories - then a whole new purpose and direction entered my life. I couldn't get enough or read fast enough . . . then there was the mystery book club and Book-of-the-Month Club (which I joined when I was 14) and the rest as they say . . . is history.

But one memory that is especially treasured was during a vacation visit to my grandparents in Iowa in the early 1950's . . . sitting in the creaky old house of my great aunt next door and reading a Nancy Drew mystery while listening to the sounds of this old house . . . I was totally transported away . . .

I moved on to Alfred Hitchcock, Ellery Queen, Agatha Christie, Erle Stanley Gardner, and finally to King, Koontz, Robert R. McCammon, Robin Cook, George R.R. Martin, and a whole slew of authors and finally to my most favorite . . . Slade . . . who as I recently told a patron in the public library has the distinction of being the only one who's books I have re-read twice and "Headhunter" which I have re-read 3 times now.

I highly recommend mystery stories as a means of stimulating a love of reading and books (in many forms, printed page, sound recording etc.) to any young child to capture their interest and give them a life-time of pleasure . . . .

Keep them coming Slade . . . I plan on sticking around as long as you . . . I have too . . . just to read what you have come up with, my friend!!!


Judy
User avatar
Judy
 
Posts: 384
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2005 7:52 pm
Location: USA

Postby Slade » Mon Feb 18, 2008 5:58 pm

raasnio & Judy,

You have both mentioned Alfred Hitchcock. That picks up on a theme the Board discussed last summer in the thread "Timeline." What I have noted more and more as the years go by is how people come into the timeline of entertainment at a certain point and progress exclusively in the Now without ever going back to experience the very best of the Then. A case in point is Alfred Hitchcock's REAR WINDOW.

You - yes, I'm talking to you, the lurker in the shadows reading this post for whatever reason has brought you to the Board - have you seen REAR WINDOW? And do you recognize the name Cornell Woolrich. If not, you are in for a treat.

http://www.time.com/time/columnist/corl ... 18,00.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cornell_Woolrich

Alfred Hitchcock's best film is, of course, PSYCHO. Thrillers and mysteries were never the same after that came out in 1960. But what's the second best film Hitchcock made?

Of late, there's been a move by certain directors and critics to shoehorn VERTIGO into that slot. Two weeks ago, TCM played the restored versions of REAR WINDOW and VERTIGO back-to-back, so that gave me a chance to settle the issue once and for all in my mind.

No contest.

If you want to see a great mystery that holds up over time - and a product of Cornell Woolrich's overwrought mind - and the movie that brought Raymond Burr, Perry Mason, to Hollywood's attention - go on the hunt for the RESTORED version of REAR WINDOW.

Voyeurism was never so much fun.

Slade
User avatar
Slade
 
Posts: 3073
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:42 am

Postby Slade » Mon Feb 18, 2008 6:44 pm

And speaking of mysteries, here's an interesting one with a connection to EVIL EYE/ZOMBIE:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/obitu ... 34148.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jh ... db2901.xml

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jh ... /wsa28.xml

http://www.fugitives-drift-lodge.com/an ... guidebook/

According to a KwaZulu-Natal police spokesman, the robbers entered the lodge office and held-up the receptionist, asking for Mr Rattray by name. They proceeded to the main lodge, where one of the robbers fired a single shot. After the gang's leader ordered him to return, the gunman re-entered and then fired a further two rounds. Mr Rattray's body was found in a bathroom, with gunshot wounds to his chest, shoulder and hand. An unnamed friend of the Rattrays told a local newspaper that Mr Rattray pushed his wife to the ground shortly before the first shot.

Although the gang appear to have been looking for money, police said they departed empty-handed. That has prompted speculation locally that they may have targeted Mr Rattray for some other reason, a theory given added credence because of the care they took to ensure he was killed.
User avatar
Slade
 
Posts: 3073
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:42 am

Postby raasnio » Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:04 pm

Is it strange that I prefer Rear Window to Psycho? I just watched Rear Window again last year...
User avatar
raasnio
techno-guru / co-administrator
 
Posts: 887
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 2:24 am
Location: KC, MO

Postby Slade » Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:33 pm

No. REAR WINDOW is what it is, no matter what the decade.

PSYCHO is like the Big Bang. You had to have been there when it burst onto the scene to get the full force.

The power of PSYCHO is a moment lost in time.
User avatar
Slade
 
Posts: 3073
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:42 am

Postby raasnio » Tue Feb 19, 2008 3:13 am

Slade wrote:No. REAR WINDOW is what it is, no matter what the decade.

PSYCHO is like the Big Bang. You had to have been there when it burst onto the scene to get the full force.

The power of PSYCHO is a moment lost in time.


True. Since voyeurism has only gotten easier I'm sure that Rear Window is even easier to relate to.

Back to Carr, I left the book during a reveal during a card game. I can't wait to see where this goes. I'm very close to the end... 8-)
User avatar
raasnio
techno-guru / co-administrator
 
Posts: 887
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 2:24 am
Location: KC, MO

Postby Slade » Tue Feb 19, 2008 3:39 am

How true. We can tell so much about Miss Torso's and Miss Lonely Heart's lives simply by peeping through their windows. One of the seductions of the film is how we feel compelled to know what happens to them next, even though it's none of our business.

Tsk, tsk...

If they didn't want us to look, they shouldn't have kept their curtains open.

And that, of course, is a cop out.

Because we still ponder what's going on behind the pulled-down shade of the Newlyweds' window.

1954 isn't so different from today.
User avatar
Slade
 
Posts: 3073
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 12:42 am

Next

Return to Multi-Media

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests

cron