Martha Grimes Walks Into a Pub

Essays on a Writer with a Load of Mischief

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About the Book

Since the 1979 discovery of her work in a slush pile at Little, Brown, Martha Grimes has gone on to publish more than 30 books, win international acclaim (and a Nero Wolfe Award) for her detective series, and develop a following of readers whose loyalty translates to repeated stays on the best-sellers lists.
This collection of 10 critical essays provides an in-depth analysis of Grimes’ oeuvre, principally the Richard Jury, Emma Graham, and Andi Oliver series. The essays address Grimes’ themes of parental abandonment, loneliness, obsession, greed, mistaken and dual identity, the resilience of children, stunted romantic relationships and animal cruelty. Particular attention is paid to her engaging characters, strong sense of place and the comedy, which feature so strongly in her novels.

About the Author(s)

Sarah D. Fogle is a professor of communication and humanities at Embry-Riddle University in Daytona Beach, Florida. She has 40 years of experience in higher education and she has published numerous articles on detective and crime fiction.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Sarah D. Fogle
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 206
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliographies, index
Copyright Date: 2011
pISBN: 978-0-7864-4286-7
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8506-2
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii
Introduction
SARAH D. FOGLE      1

Martha Grimes and the English Pub
MARCIA J. SONGER      7
“You’re Always Away When the Ax-Murderers Come”: The Plight of Disposable Children
DEANE MANSFIELD-KELLEY and LOIS A. MARCHINO      25
The Significance of Place
MARY ALICE MONEY      42
“A Play for Us All”: Medea and the Spirit Lake Novels
AMY HAUSSER      62
Identity, Simulacra, and the Hyperreal: Detectives, Murders, and Victims
RHONDA KNIGHT      79
The Woman’s Way: Gender and Fictional Style
NANCY ELIOT PARKER      95
Humor, Murder and the Ludicrous in Human Behavior
MIMOSA STEPHENSON      114
Fear of Commitment: Richard Jury, Melrose Plant, and Women
SHERRY GINN      137
Emma Graham, Detective Quest Hero
SARAH D. FOGLE      156
Mystery, Murder, Misery and Meat
DIANE CALHOUN-FRENCH      173

About the Contributor      193
Index      195