Beyond fiction: the larger world of crime literature

Crime Books

Books

December 25, 2005|By SARAH WEINMAN | SARAH WEINMAN,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Under the Bridge

Behind the Mystery

Stuart Kaminsky

Hot House Press / 250 pages

This coffee table book is the perfect gift for mystery lovers, especially those who aspire to write mysteries like the masters given their say here. Kaminsky - no slouch in the mystery department - has a relaxed manner with his subjects, leading to informed insights on the craft of writing by Sue Grafton, Donald Westlake, Lawrence Block, Joe Gores, and many more. And because Kaminsky, who is friends with many of the authors he interviewed, was invited into their houses, we get pictures of them in their natural habitat by photographer Laurie Roberts.

The interviews vary based on how candid each writer chose to be, but my favorite is Westlake's, simply for his answer about which superhero he'd like to be. That alone is worth the price of admission.

Sarah Weinman reviews crime fiction monthly for The Sun. Visit her at www.sarahweinman.com.

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