It may come as a surprise to some to find me including Somerset Maugham in my crime fiction blog, but my vague memories of the collected short stories shown to the right is of twist-in-the-tail stories, crimes perpetrated and gone unsolved, and even without detection.
These days people would talk about cross-genre writers, as if a "literary writer" can't at the same time write "real" crime fiction.
In fact ASHENDEN, a collection of short stories about a gentlemanly, sophisticated, aloof spy, based on his own experiences, is listed by the Mystery Writers of America (1995) at number 64 in their top 100 Mysteries of All Time. The volume is thought to have influenced the Ian Fleming James Bond series.
If you'd like to try a Maugham story for yourself, you can read Rain online. That one will give you an example of what I mean by the twist-in-the-tail stories.
There are some Maugham works available free for download through Project Gutenberg.
- Liza of Lambeth (English)
- The Magician (English)
- Moon and Sixpence (English)
- Of Human Bondage (English)
- The Trembling of a Leaf
Little Stories of the South Sea Islands (English)
- A Man with a Conscience
- German Harry
- Mr. Know All
- The Lotus Eater
- The Moon and Sixpence
- The Outstation