Thursday, March 21, 2013
Anna Katherine Green. A writer of short stories and novels, she is considered the mother of the detective novel. I don't know how I overlooked her work, but I am making up for that now! One of Ms. Green's recurring detective characters, Violet Strange, (a precursor to Christie's Miss Marple) is a beautiful debutante, who boldly solves her complicated cases- something quite unusual for a 19th century woman. Two of my favorite Violet Strange stories are The House of Clocks and Missing; Page Thirteen. Her first novel, The Leavenworth Case, written in 1878, was so good that the men of that time doubted it could have been written by a woman. Her work was noticed and praised by another one of my favorite 19th century authors, Wilkie Collins (a contemporary of Charles Dickens). I am currently reading and enjoying The Leavenworth Case, which has Sir Arthur Conan Doyle overtones, years before Sherlock Holmes arrived on the literary scene. For fun plot twists and skillful sleuthing, try Anna Katherine Green.