Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Crime Fiction Alphabet: Letter N

I have signed up for a second year of The Alphabet in Crime Fiction, a community meme sponsored by Mysteries in Paradise. Each week she'll be expecting participants to produce a post featuring a mystery/crime novel or novelist related to that week's letter. 
I hope our hostess and my fellow alphabet tourists will forgive me for wandering aimlessly about this summer and totally losing my way.  I skipped out on "J," managed to rejoin the group for "K," and got lost again on "L" and "M."  So....we're all ready for "N," are we?  Okay....

N is for Meredith Nicholson (hey!  this could make up for me missing "M" too!).  What do you mean you never heard of Meredith Nicholson?  Why, he's that best-selling author (newspaperman, politician, and diplomat) from Indiana.  Most of his writing focuses on the triumph of young love over various obstacles thrown in its path. This is true, in a way, even of the mystery novel that I read this year.  He was born in 1866 in Crawfordsville and had three books hit the bestseller list:

  • The House of a Thousand Candles (#4 in 1906)
  • The Port of Missing Men (#3 in 1907)
  • A Hoosier Chronicle (#5 in 1912)
Not nearly as well known today as his contemporaries, Booth Tarkington and James Whitcomb Riley, he is, however credited with helping to create a Golden Age of Indiana literature.  (We had a Golden Age of literature here in Indiana?  I never realized.  I mean--I knew about Tarkington and Riley, but can't say I ever thought of them in the same sentence as Golden Age.)  The main reason I know anything at all about Nicholson is that I did a reading challenge (no, really, Bev? you--do a reading challenge? surely not).  And the challenge required that we read one novel set in the state/province where we live.  By chance, I had picked up Nicholson's The House of a Thousand Candles at our library's used book shop sometime last year--so I promptly made that my choice.

For a much better look at Meredith Nicholson than I've given here, please click on his name.  And for a review of The House of a Thousand Candles, please click above.


Anonymous said...

Bev - Now see? I lived right next door so to speak in Illinois for a few years and never knew about Indiana's Golden Age either. Bad Margot! But I am glad you featured Nicholson for this meme. He's an author whose work I've never read and ought to try.

Peter Reynard said...

And I lived in Ohio and Pennsylvania and never knew either. The things ya learn. :)

Carol said...

Add me to the list of people who never knew Indiana had such a rich history, although I did read the other day that 80% of all RV's are made in your state. And why did I think you lived in Kansas?

Elizabeth said...

Sounds like a fun thing to do, but I doubt I could keep up.

Stopping by from the Partners in Crime Host List of Hosts...been here before visiting as well.

Silver's Reviews

Bev Hankins said...

Carol: I have no idea why you thought I lived Kansas. And, no, I don't have a dog named Toto, either. :-)

Peggy Ann said...

Sounds really interesting Bev. Will be on the look out for his books!

Scott said...

Interesting. Goes way back. :)