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best vintage crime books read in 2012

I’ve read a lot of vintage crime books this year, and these are the ten that stood out (in alphabetical order by author):

Clifford Ashdown (R. Austin Freeman) and John J. Pitcairn’s The Complete Adventures of Romney Pringle (1903), the late Victorian adventures of a delightful scoundrel.

Alec Coppel’s Mr Denning Drives North (1951) - a delightfully twisted crime story.

Edmund Crispin’s Buried for Pleasure (1948) - pure fun as Professor Fen tries to combine crime-solving with a whimsical attempt at a political career.

R Austin Freeman’s The Eye of Osiris (1911) - a fiendish will and a mysterious disappearance tax the powers of Dr Thorrndyke.

E W Hornung’s The Amateur Cracksman (1899), the first installment in the adventures of that surprisingly complex gentleman thief, Raffles.

Rufus King’s Murder by Latitude (1930), a fine shipboard mystery.

A E W Mason’s The Prisoner in the Opal (1928), an interesting combination of crime novel and occult thriller.

William P. McGivern’s The Big Heat (1953), a fine hardboiled cop story.

Mickey Spillane’s I, the Jury (1947). Spillane is an acquired taste but this, his first Mike Hammer book, is vintage Spillane.

Rex Stout’s The League of Frightened Men (1935) - college pranksters face the fate that all pranksters deserve in this Nero Wolfe mystery.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
kaishin108
Dec. 31st, 2012 12:29 pm (UTC)
Thank you for your list, I will peruse it closer! My next Nero Wolfe up to read is League of Frightened Men. I am on Mr Stout's, MIght As Well Be Dead. I like most all of his, except for a few.
Happy New Year!
castallia
Dec. 31st, 2012 01:47 pm (UTC)
I'll definitely look for the Crispin book--I haven't read this one and I love his mysteries. :)
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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vintage_crime
crime and spy fiction from Poe up to 1950

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