The Abbreviated Holiday Weekend Update

Since it’s still technically a holiday today (and at least in my case,for a few more days yet) I decided to hold off on the Update till now. And to start off, my latest column (and last one of ’05) deals with some of my favorite non-fiction releases of the year.


NYTBR: Marilyn Stasio ends 2005 by reviewing new stuff by P.D. James, C.R. Corwin and John Harvey as well as Ed McBain’s wonderful throwback THE GUTTER & THE GRAVE; Lizzie Skurnick (who does double reviewing duty in the Baltimore Sun) finds way more fault with Craig Davidson’s RUST AND BONE than I did; and Joe Queenan wishes people would stop giving him books for the holidays, dammit.

WaPo Book World: Jeremy Dauber rounds up the Yiddish-speaking beat; Edith Grossman and Mayra Montero converse about translation, literature, and the intersection between the two; and Steve Weinberg brings to light some important books about miscarriages of justice.

G&M: Margaret Cannon examines the last gasps of 2005-published crime fiction by Colin Bateman, Sue Grafton, Max Foran, Richard Clarke, William Callahan, Ron Chudley, D.M. Wyman and Simon Brett; Jeffrey Miller applauds John Mortimer’s continuing gift of social satire; and Don Coles fills his darkness with light — in the form of books, of course.

Guardian Review: Jeanette Winterson provides a very special holiday story; Susan Hill writes of an idea for Christmas derived from the homeless; Orhan Pamuk’s translator provides some inside dope on his aborted trial; and Maxim Jakubowski rounds up new crime releases by Jeff Lindsay, Adrian Magson, Manuel Vasquez Montalban and Phil Rickman.

The Times: Writers like Ian Rankin and Joanna Trollope describe their favorite walks; Ali Smith provides an exclusive short story; Matthew Syed discovers the hazy-crazy world of fanfic; and David Baddiel wishes some of those heavy-hitting bestsellers could be rewritten in time for the holidays.

The Rest:

Oline Cogdill ends 2005 by looking at 3 notable titles by Chris Grabenstein, Edward Falco and Karen Olson.

Meanwhile, Dick Adler closes out his year in mystery reviewing by looking at the latest by Jim Kelly, Donna Andrews, Kasey Michaels, Janet Neel, Lee Goldberg, Elizabeth Brundage and David Kent.

Carlo Wolff takes a look at John Harvey’s new novel, ASH AND BONE, and enjoys its leisurely pace and fine writing.

John Galligan (author of THE BLOOD KNOT) tells the Yomiuri Times who some of his new favorite crime writers are.

The Sun-Times’ Henry Kisor pens an ode to two pioneering journalists, Herman Kogan and Lloyd Wendt, who rose to prominence in the 1940s.

Who were publishing’s heroes and villains? The Independent takes some care in finding out.

And finally, still looking for that perfect gift for your hardboiled loved one? Then perhaps PHILIP MARLOWE’S GUIDE TO LIFE will do just the trick.