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Rita Mae Brown

Thursday, March 20, 2008
Here's an interesting article on Rita Mae Brown from Time. While her fiction is not considered cutting edge - cat mysteries get a lot of grief in some quarters - she's apparently fearless in real life. She's never felt a need to hide her homosexuality, and in fact her first book, Ruby Fruit Jungle, was a comic coming-of-age story about a young lesbian. It sold a million copies.

She was also kicked out of NOW by Betty Freidan personally, and later has a high-profile relationship with Martina Navratilova. Now she's Master of the Hounds for a foxhunting club in Virginia. No word on what Sneaky Pie thinks of that.

posted by Graham Powell at 10:47 AM

Last Call to Do Some Good

Monday, March 03, 2008
See that widget over there to the left, showing how much CrimeSpot readers have donated to the United Way? If you were planning on dropping some spare cash, you'd better get to it soon, as it's going away after this weekend. Some will be disappointed that they won't constantly be reminded how cool they are for contributing; others will be relieved that they won't be faced daily with evidence of their own skinflintedness.

Brown's Requiem. Dick Adler has an excellent article on Fredric Brown in the Chicago tribune. Brown's been one of my favorite writers for years, both for his mystery and science-fiction stories. In fact, I titled my Carnival of the Criminal Minds post Carnival of Crime, the title of Brown's "best of" anthology.

Dick asks why Brown never achieved the status of Dashiell Hammett or Jim Thompson, and I think he left out one of the reasons: Brown had a whimsical sense of humor that didn't fit into the hard-boiled world that much of his work would otherwise have been categorized as. I mean you can only set so many murder mysteries at circuses before people begin to wonder if you're serious.

posted by Graham Powell at 8:05 AM