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      Please carry on all conversations without shouting, excessive ranting, or crudity. Profanity and personal attacks will not be tolerated. I am delighted to have you in my house - well, on my blog, anyway - and look forward to discussions. But please remember that we are all trying to carry on a civilized discussion. Your views are valuable. Please treat them that way. Thank you.

    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 Chinese Orange Mystery" | Main | Vintage Mystery Challenge: Crispin's "Case of the Gilded Fly" »

    March 25, 2013


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    Curt Evans

    I have this but have never gotten around to reading. I always thought the English folklore elements sounded interesting.

    Margot Kinberg

    Les - Oooh, a Mrs. Bradley story! The nice thing about a series of 66 books is that there's always one that one hasn't read yet, or in a long time. So it often feels like exploring a new series. I'm glad you pointed us to this one. I do like that unique touch of the otherworldy-that-isn't-otherworldly' that we see in Mitchell's books and I'm glad you highlighted it.


    Thanks for this detailed review. I want to try a mystery by Gladys Mitchell, and it is nice to have specific novels to try. Not sure about the humor and odd characters, but I won't know until I try one.

    Les Blatt

    Curt, there are folklore elements in several of the Mitchells that I've tried and they're very well done. Some of them may seem strange to a non-English audience, but they are important parts of her stories.

    Les Blatt

    Margot, some of the Mrs. Bradley books do have elements that come very close to the line between "normal" and "supernatural" - Mrs. Bradley does say that she's descended from some famous or infamous witches. But often it's more a matter of atmosphere and detail, and I think that thread does add to the overall storytelling.

    Les Blatt

    Tracy, I do think this one is a book that American audiences may find less daunting in terms of strictly-British eccentricities - even though some of the activities are certainly bizarre. Mitchell's writing, with its frequently dark humor, makes this one thoroughly enjoyable for me, and Mrs. Bradley doesn't seem to display all the personality quirks that she does in some of the other books. This might be a good one to try, particularly since it's now available in a good trade paperback edition from the Rue Morgue Press.


    Hi Les, I've just come across your blog and I think it is great. I am a big fan of mystery novels, which I think stems from having read a lot of Enid Blyton and Agatha Christie when I was young. I've started reading Gladys Mitchell but I haven't got to A Hearse on May-Day yet. I've read 9 of her Mrs Bradley books so far and I'd like to read them all. They are a challenge to find in print in the UK at the moment.

    I've also taken an interest in reading some of the early detective fiction. I've just finished reading The Woman in White (1860) by Wilkie Collins and I've recently bought The Rector of Veilbye (1829) by Steen Steensten Bilcher. Are there any early detective books that you would recommend I add to my list?

    Thanks for your help :)

    Les Blatt

    Welcome, mysterygirl, and I'm glad you're enjoying the blog. Mitchell books can be a challenge in the US as well, although the Rue Morgue Press has been reprinting some over here, and there are also some new ebook editions. I really have only read a handful of hers so far, and I'm looking forward to expanding my list.

    As far as suggestions for early detective fiction, another Collins, The Moonstone, is certainly worth reading. Some of Mary Roberts Rinehart's early books, especially "The Man in Lower Ten," are enjoyable; so are a lot of Edgar Wallace potboilers. I'm assuming you've already been through Sherlock Holmes. Chesterton's "Father Brown" stories, to be sure, should be on the list. You might want to chek the "backlist" page (which you'll find in the right-hand column, near the top) for other suggestions. Again, welcome!

    The comments to this entry are closed.

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