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    Mystery Publishers

    • Academy Chicago Publishers
      An imprint of the Chicago Review Press. Features a number of interesting authors, most long out of print, plus some other odds and ends, including some horror stories by Conan Doyle.
    • Crippen & Landru
      Crippen & Landru publish mystery short story collections. Of particular interest is what they call "Lost Classics," a series of anthologies of mostly uncollected stories by authors who might be enjoyed by a new generation of readers.
    • Dean Street Press
      This small British publisher has a great many classic crime books in its much broader catalog. They are bringing back many Golden Age classics by authors who deserve another chance at a new audience.
    • Felony & Mayhem
      This publisher specializes in classic mysteries, broadly defined, including newer mysteries that adhere to classic standards. They have just overhauled their website to make it much more informative and user-friendly.
    • Locked Room International
      A small press, specializing in very good English-language translations of (so far) mostly-French authors of locked room and impossible crime stories. They publish in Print-On-Demand and electronic editions.
    • Merion Press
      The Merion Press is an independent publisher of out-of-print works that were originally published over 75 years ago, but are enduring even today.
      The brainchild of editor/anthologist/author/bookstore-owner Otto Penzler, the Mysterious Press has recently returned to life and now works with Open Road Media as an electronic book publisher. It is already republishing the work of a lot of classic authors, with more books on the way.
    • Oconee Spirit Press
      A small, independent publisher committed to publishing "lively fiction, and provocative non-fiction." Most of their list covers early works by established authors writing traditional mysteries, such as Carolyn Hart and Margaret Maron.
    • Oleander Press
      This small eclectic British publisher has begun publishing a series of classic British mystery novels, primarily from the Golden Age. The series is grouped into a section of their catalogue named "London Bound," as the books are set in London.
    • Ostara Publishing
      "Ostara Publishing re-issues titles that have unjustifiably become unavailable either through the ravages of time or the forces of publishing economics. We specialise in Crime and Thriller fiction titles and our range goes from the1920s through to the 21st century. We publish thematically and currently have six series available. All our titles are published in a 'trade paperback' format and printed to order."
    • Poisoned Pen Press
      Based in Scottsdale, Arizona, the Poisoned Pen Press publishes a fairly wide variety of mysteries. Some are reprints; many are new, by newer authors. Their website has a great deal of information about their books and authors.

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    « "The Lucky Stiff" | Main | "Laurels Are Poison" »

    December 12, 2012


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    Margot Kinberg

    Les - What a great idea for a post! In my opinion, anything that encourages young people to get lost in a book is a good thing. And some of those traditional mysteries are just the ticket. Thanks for sharing this one.

    Les Blatt

    Margot, if you haven't read "The Westing Game," you should. The writing is lively, and Raskin knows how to "hook" an audience. In the first chapter, she describes the apartment building where the sixteen "heirs" are living - in fact, where they had been selected ahead of time to get apartments. At the end of the chapter, Raskin writes:

    "Who were these people, these specially selected tenants? They were mothers and fathers and children. A dressmaker, a secretary, an inventor, a doctor, a judge. And, oh yes, one was a bookie, one was a burglar, one was a bomber, and one was a mistake. Barney Northrup had rented one of the apartments to the wrong person."

    And that's just the beginning of the book! I suspect readers will indeed be hooked - and stay hooked.

    Patrick Murtha

    "The Westing Game" is a perfectly smashing book. Anyone who enjoys it ought to check out Raskin's three earlier, somewhat similar titles - "The Mysterious Disappearance of Leon (I Mean Noel)," "Figgs and Phantoms," and "The Tattooed Potato and Other Clues." As you note, she is an equally good read for youngsters and adults. Her tone had some influence, I believe, on Daniel Handler's excellent Lemony Snicket series. Raskin - also an artist - died too young at age 56, just a few years after "The Westing Game" was published.

    Les Blatt

    I hadn't thought of her in connection with the Lemony Snicket series, Patrick, but I can see where she might have been an influence. I've had "The Mysterious Disappearance of Leon (I Mean Noel) in my to-be-read pile for a while and do need to find time to read it - and I wasn't aware of the other two books; thanks for pointing them out. And, yes, she died far too young. A fine writer indeed.

    Patti Abbott

    I can remember my son especially reading this throughout a vacation. What a great book. And the kids wrote Raskin a fan letter, which she was kind enough to respond to. Great writer. I am going to include this on forgotten books. I want to read it right now!

    Les Blatt

    I've heard from a lot of people, Patti, saying the same thing - how they, or their children, found "The Westing Game" and couldn't put it down until they finished it. Again, I think it's a book that adult readers would enjoy as well, if they enjoy the classic/traditional puzzle-based mystery. Forgotten? I hope not, and I'm delighted it seems to be back in print.

    Sergio (Tipping My Fedora)

    Thanks very much for this Les - I have a couple of fairly advanced 8-year-old nieces who have expressed an interest in Agatha Christie but I think this might be a better bet.

    Les Blatt

    Sergio, I think they'd enjoy Christie, to be sure - but The Westing Game is probably perfect for them. Again, I think you'd enjoy it as well - it really is a multi-layered, fair-play puzzle, the kind where you can look back at the end and see where you were given all the clues you needed. I was delighted to find, for example, that I had correctly anticipated where one set of clues was headed - but I didn't follow them through for the extra step that was needed to really make sense of them. Great book.

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