Essays on Canadian Crime Fiction, Television, and Film
Paper 342 pp.
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The first serious book-length study of crime writing in Canada, Detecting Canada contains thirteen essays on many of Canada’s most popular crime writers, including Peter Robinson, Giles Blunt, Gail Bowen, Thomas King, Michael Slade, Margaret Atwood, and Anthony Bidulka. Genres examined range from the well-loved police procedural and the amateur sleuth to those less well known, such as anti-detection and contemporary noir novels. The book looks critically at the esteemed sixties’ television show Wojeck, as well as the more recent series Da Vinci’s Inquest, Da Vinci’s City Hall, and Intelligence, and the controversial Durham County, a critically acclaimed but violent television series that ran successfully in both Canada and the United States.
The essays in Detecting Canada look at texts from a variety of perspectives, including postcolonial studies, gender and queer studies, feminist studies, Indigenous studies, and critical race and class studies. Crime fiction, enjoyed by so many around the world, speaks to all of us about justice, citizenship, and important social issues in an uncertain world.
Jeannette Sloniowski is an associate professor in the Department of Communication, Popular Culture and Film at Brock University. She is a series editor for the TV Milestones series at Wayne State University Press, author of several journal articles and four edited books including Documenting the Documentary, Slippery Pastimes: Reading the Popular in Canadian Culture (WLU Press, 2002), and Candid Eyes.
Marilyn Rose is a professor in the Department of English at Brock University. She specializes in modern and contemporary short fiction and poetry as well as detective fiction. She has published articles and book chapters in these areas and, with Jeannette Sloniowski, created and maintains CrimeFictionCanada, a scholarly database dedicated to the study of detective fiction in English around the world.
“Writers of Canadian crime fiction have learned to gird our loins when we are asked a question that is as irritating as it is inevitable: When are you going to write a real novel? By offering not simply an overview of the history of crime fiction in Canada but thoughtful essays on the themes Canadian crime writers explore and on the roles played by landscape, gender, class, race, and community in our works, Detecting Canada answers that question decisively. Canadian crime writers are writing real novels, and Detecting Canada offers solid evidence to prove the point.”
— Gail Bowen, author of The Gifted, the latest in the Joanne Kilbourn mystery series
“Detecting Canada is an indispensable landmark in the study of Canadian crime narratives. Its range is remarkable, with the essays covering not only the major practitioners of Canadian crime fiction but also television crime shows and films. This collection will remain a standard resource for many years to come.”
— David Schmid, Department of English, University at Buffalo, author of Natural Born Celebrities: Serial Killers in American Culture