new True Detective
series has sparked
interest in an unlikely subject
: an 1895 book called The King In Yellow. Praised by H. P. Lovecraft
, the book is a collection of short stories in which a play called The King In Yellow is somehow involved. A play, which, in an alternate world, "could not be judged by any known standard" but in which it was "acknowledged that the supreme note of art had been struck" leaves its readers changed, and perhaps insane. It's inspired
(and the occasional imitator
) ever since, and you can read it for yourself in your browser
or, still free, on your e-reader
. True Detective's bleak world view and story of lives tinged with madness fits right in, whether the mythology eventually pans out in the series or not.
posted by tyllwin
on Feb 26, 2014 -
[Arthur Penn's Night Moves
] does belong to a traditional, indeed obsolescent genre, but the distance it keeps from it (not an ironic or critical distance, just a distance) is such that genre-related expectations become irrelevant. Most of the time, the story line seems to meander aimlessly, taking in extraneous material, doubling back, going round in circles (the aimless is deceptive, a smoke screen obfuscating the complex, rigorous organization of an exceptionally well-structured script). The "mystery" aspect of the plot is dealt with in the most peculiar, topsy-turvy manner, withholding not the solution of the problem but the problem itself until the very end, when, in a dazzling visual tour de force, both are conjured up almost simultaneously.
- Jean Pierre Coursodon [more inside]
posted by Trurl
on Oct 1, 2011 -
Decades after it was written on the eve of World War II, a lost Poirot story by Agatha Christie has been found. Today it is published in the Daily Mail for the first time: The Capture Of Cerberus
(scroll half way down the page). [more inside]
posted by lioness
on Aug 21, 2009 -
"To make off with hubby's fortune, yea, I think I heard of that happenin' once or twice around L.A. And… you want me to do what exactly?" He found the paper bag he'd brought his supper home in and got busy pretending to scribble notes on it, because straight-chick uniform, makeup supposed to look like no makeup or whatever, here came that old well-known hard-on Shasta was always good for sooner or later. Does it ever end, he wondered. Of course it does. It did. Thomas Pynchon
's next novel, the 416-page Inherent Vice
, is described by Penguin Press
as "part noir, part psychedelic romp, all Thomas Pynchon — private eye Doc Sportello comes, occasionally, out of a marijuana haze to watch the end of an era as free love slips away and paranoia creeps in with the L.A. fog." While we wait for its August 4 publication, we can read an essay on the dystopian musical he co-wrote at Cornell
or watch a clip of that movie they made of Gravity's Rainbow
. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese
on Feb 6, 2009 -
The realistic style is easy to abuse: from haste, from lack of awareness, from inability to bridge the chasm that lies between what a writer would like to be able to say and what he actually knows how to say. It is easy to fake; brutality is not strength, flipness is not wit, edge-of-the-chair writing can be as boring as flat writing; dalliance with promiscuous blondes can be very dull stuff when described by goaty young men with no other purpose in mind than to describe dalliance with promiscuous blondes. There has been so much of this sort of thing that if a character in a detective story says, "Yeah," the author is automatically a Hammett imitator.
Raymond Chandler, "The Simple Art of Murder" (1950)
posted by Navelgazer
on Sep 24, 2008 -
37 year old self-appointed detective fools potential pedophiles with usernames like "dadanddaughtersex."
Not only is there no victim, there cannot not be a crime because of the woman's true age, and the method of 'baiting' pedophile suspects looks like a violation of one's civil rights. On top of that her pedophile website is quite the money-maker, churning $1,000 a month in advertising revenue. Illegal entrapment or civic minded vigilante? Obviously this is a touchy subject, but I can't see the different between this and a plain-clothed police officer asking everyone on the street if they want to buy illegal drugs or guns just for a quick bust.
posted by skallas
on Jan 18, 2002 -