17 February 2011

Forgotten Book: SCENE OF THE CRIME, John Creasey

This week's contribution to Pattinase's Friday's Forgotten Books comes from my records early in 1992.

Published in 1965.

Publisher's blurb:
Are the murders of two women and the theft of antique jewellery the work of the same criminal? If so, Superintendent Roger West may have the wrong man in custody.

What an incredible writer! Some of us have come across his creations on television (e.g.Gideon, and The Baron) without realising.
He published his first novel  SEVEN TIMES SEVEN in 1932 at the age of just 24. It is obvious if you check the lists that he was publishing up to 5 books a year.
SCENE OF THE CRIME is listed at #29 in his Inspector West series which he wrote from 1942 to 1978.

John Creasey (September 17, 1908 - June 9, 1973) was born in Southfields, Surrey, England and died in New Hall, Bodenham, Salisbury Wiltshire, England. He was the seventh of nine children in a working class home. He became an English author of crime thrillers, published in excess of 600 books under 20+ different pseudonyms.

Creasey's first published novel
He invented many famous characters who would appear in a whole series of novels. Probably the most famous of these is Gideon of Scotland Yard, the basis for the television program Gideon's Way but others include Department Z, Dr. Palfrey, The Toff, Inspector Roger West, and The Baron (which was also made into a television series).
He was awarded the MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) for services in the United Kingdom's National Savings Movement during World War II.

In 1962, Creasey won an Edgar Award for Best Novel, from the Mystery Writers of America, for Gideon's Fire, written under the pen name J. J. Marric. And in 1969 he was given the MWA's highest honor, the Grand Master Award.

From Wikipedia:
During 1953, John Creasey founded the Crime Writer's Association (CWA) in the UK.
The CWA New Blood Dagger is an annual award given by the British Crime Writers' Association for first books by previously unpublished writers. It is given in memory of CWA founder John Creasey and was previously known as The John Creasey Memorial Award. The award is voted on by past winners and the prize consists of an ornamental dagger and £1,000.


George said...

I've read a couple hundred John Creasey novels under his many pseudonyms. And, I have a couple hundred more of Creasey's books sitting on my shelves. I need to pick another one up and read it.

Todd Mason said...

Certainly, almost everyone seems to love the Gideon stories. Another guy I figured I'd get to eventually, since his books were everywhere...and perhaps I shall.


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