Tuesday, November 08, 2011

From Sources Near and Far

• This is a sad and pretty bizarre turn of events. “Mulholland Books, an imprint of Little, Brown, has pulled its novel Assassin of Secrets after passages were found to be copied from other spy novels,” reports Jacket Copy, the Los Angeles Times’ books blog. “The book was a first novel from Q.R. Markham. ... In a statement, Michael Pietsch, executive vice president and publisher of Little, Brown and Co., said: ‘Upon investigation, it was clear the passages in question were lifted, and Little, Brown determined that the only course of action was to immediately recall books from retailers across the country.’ The passages in question, which were not shared with the press, were lifted from James Bond books by Ian Fleming and thrillers by Robert Ludlum and Christopher McCrary, the Associated Press reports.” Mulholland Books is a fine publisher, and there was very much to like about Markham's first novel. I’m sorry to see this plagiarism scandal erupt. Read more about the affair here and here.

• Check out the latest update of the Thrilling Detective Web Site.

• Blogger Ivan G. Shreve Jr. reminds me, it was six decades ago this last weekend that “the film Detective Story [starring Kirk Douglas] was released to theaters--a movie adaptation of Sidney Kingsley’s 1949 Broadway stage hit about a dedicated police detective ... who’s a little too dedicated, to the point of harboring a world view in which matters are dealt with in purely black or white terms.” Shreve provides a thorough write-up about that 1951 film here.

• I don’t think I ever saw the 1988 TV pilot Remo Williams, based on the series of action/adventurer paperbacks, The Destroyer, created by Warren Murphy and Richard Sapir. However, David Foster recently found a couple of clips from that teleflick on YouTube and has now posted them in his Permission to Kill blog. I’m not sure I am a better person for having watched these belatedly ...

• Meanwhile, Yvette Banek points me toward a number of old Charlie Chan movies available on the Web.

• Once more, flip-flopping Republican presidential contender Willard Mitt Romney demonstrates that he’s completely out of touch with reality. Only someone, like him, worth more than $250 million would refer to federal employees--who, by the way, do not make more money than he does--as “servants.”

R.I.P., former heavyweight boxing champ Joe Frazier.

• I mentioned last month that British author P.D. James has penned a crime-fiction follow-up to Jane Austen’s 1813 novel, Pride and Prejudice. Now James tells The Daily Telegraph “why she decided to combine her two literary passions to produce a sequel which opens with a brutal murder at Pemberley.” (Hat tip to Mystery Fanfare.)

The intersection of P.G. Wodehouse and crime fiction?

• Finally, author Max Allan Collins offers a heartfelt tribute to his friend, actor Michael Cornelison, who appeared in such TV series as Remington Steele and Hill Street Blues, and also “play[ed] Pat Chambers to Stacy Keach on the two New Adventures of Mike Hammer audio novels,” before dying last month at age 59.


Dee said...

Thanks for the wonderful laugh to get my morning started. I can see why the TV version of Remo Williams didn't make it, but the golfing scene was just too funny! Thanks again, Dee

Matt said...

I loved Remo Williams! I didn't realize at the time that it was a TV pilot, but I thought it was hilarious and smart and I've been surprised over the years that no one I know ever heard of it. Anything with Fred Ward is worth watching.

Matt said...

I should have viewed the clips before commenting. The clips are not of the Fred Ward movie, which explains why I didn't know this was a TV pilot. I strongly recommend that anyone who found those clips as lame as I did should check out "Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins". It's a(n) whole other kettle of fish.