Solving the Mystery of Spencer Quinn’s True Identity
Spencer Quinn and his novel DOG ON IT have been a hot topic of mine of late. But when this article in the Cape Cod Times ran last week and revealed he was a pseudonym, I put on my sleuthing hat and the end result runs today in The Daily Beast. Here’s the revelatory excerpt:
It's one of the oldest tricks in the publishing business—when sales
are too low or an idea too far outside the box, authors are quick to
adopt a new name to jumpstart their careers or change direction. It's
why Booker Prize winner John Banville can write moody crime novels as Benjamin Black, why a pseudonymous Canadian literary novelist has taken on the thriller-writing guise of Inger Wolfe—prompting many a wrong guess about his true identity—and why, going back several decades, the late Donald E. Westlake wrote his masterful, ice-cold Parker novels as Richard Stark, the mirror image of the more jovial books under his real name.
So Abrahams decided to say goodbye to Peter Abrahams, Cape Cod-based
creator of psychological suspense, and hello instead to Spencer Quinn,
Cape Cod-based author of the smash hit series debut Dog On It The book features one of the most appealing narrators to come down the mystery novel pike in quite some time: Chet the dog, the steady and stalwart companion of private investigator Bernie Little.
Read on for the rest. As for how I cracked the case – well, some things have to remain a mystery, right?