City and Shore: The Function of Setting in the British Mystery

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McFarland, May 17, 2004 - Literary Criticism - 203 pages
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Certain settings have long been a common element in British mystery and detective fiction: the quaint village; the country manor; the seaside resort; the streets of London. More than simply providing background, physical setting—in particular the city of London and the British seashore—takes on an added dimension, in a sense becoming a player in the mysteries, one that symbolizes, intensifies, and illuminates aspects of the British mystery novel. The first section examines 18 British mystery novels set in the city of London; the second covers 15 novels set by the sea. The novels span the twentieth century; among the authors whose works are included are Agatha Christie, Graham Greene, G.K. Chesterton and P.D. James. The book includes a short biography and listing of primary works for the authors covered, and appendices offer suggested fiction utilizing the two settings, and critical nonfiction covering the genre.
 

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Contents

The Shore
105
Conclusion
165
About the Authors
169
Notes
179
Bibliography
185
Index
193
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Page 7 - The narrowest street possesses, in every crook and twist of its intention, the soul of the man who built it, perhaps long in his grave. Every brick has as human a hieroglyph as if it were a graven brick of Babylon...

About the author (2004)

Gillian Mary Hanson is a native of Sussex, England and teaches English at the University of Houston Downtown. She is also the author of a number of books of literary criticism, and has written a mystery novel series set on the Texas Gulf Coast. She lives in Texas.

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