Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Bullet Points: Little Gray Cells Edition

• Hercule Poirot, it seems, never goes out of style. Series 13 of David Suchet’s popular ITV series, Agatha Christie’s Poirot (aka Poirot), will finally conclude its UK run at the beginning of 2014, with every one of Christie’s major works featuring that brainy Belgian sleuth having by then been adapted as part of the show. But now comes word of a new Poirot novel from U.S. publisher William Morrow. According to a press release posted in Mystery Fanfare,
William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, today announced plans to publish the first-ever new Agatha Christie novel, fully authorized by the Christie estate, to be penned by international bestseller Sophie Hannah. ...

“It was pure serendipity that led to Sophie Hannah being commissioned to write this book,” notes Mathew Prichard, Chairman of Agatha Christie Ltd. and grandson of Agatha Christie. “Her agent happened to approach HarperCollins in exactly the same week that my colleagues and I started discussing a new Christie book. Her idea for a plot line was so compelling and her passion for my grandmother’s work so strong, that we felt that the time was right for a new Christie to be written.”
You can read more about this project here.

• After a month out of the saddle, during which time The Daily Telegraph’s Jake Kerridge filled in on his beat, British critic-raconteur Mike Ripley is back with the September edition of his Shots column, “Getting Away with Murder.” Included in this latest round of droll observations on the state of crime and mystery fiction are notes about the first Chianti Crime Fest in Tuscany, the recent passing of Elmore Leonard, the launch of a new publishing imprint (Ostara Originals), Adam Diment’s The Dolly Dolly Spy, and the 25th anniversary of Thomas Harris’ The Silence of the Lambs, as well as recommendations of new books by Hannah Kent, Felix Francis, Maureen Jennings, and others. Click here to enjoy the whole of Ripley’s column.

• Since I’ve mentioned Jake Kerridge, let me point you in the direction of his new interview with Icelandic crime writer Arnaldur Indridason, whose ninth English-translated entry in the Inspector Erlendur Sveinsson series, Strange Shores, was released last month in the UK. Meanwhile, his eighth Reykjavik mystery, Black Skies, is finally due for publication in the States on September 17.

• Could this be? A long-lost Nero Wolfe novel?

• Two more Elmore Leonard links to add to your collection: John Harvey, Mark Billingham, and several other writers pick their favorite Leonard novels for the very handsome blog, Mr. Hyde; and the Detroit News features the late crime novelist’s grandson, Max Leonard, reflecting on the man he grew up calling ‘Goppa.”

• Yes, it’s incredible but true: A big-screen version of the 1960s TV espionage series The Man from U.N.C.L.E. will begin filming next week. Learn more here and here.

Foyle’s War returns to U.S. television on September 15!

• Sixty-two years after “television as we know it was launched,” Flavorwire spotlights what it says are “The 25 Most Memorable Moments in TV History.” In addition to President Richard M. Nixon’s resignation and the September 11, 2011, attacks are at least a couple of specific interest to crime-fiction aficionados.

• Author Quentin Bates delivers a short but fine tribute, in the blog Petrona Remembered, to Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö’s 1966-1975 police procedural series starring Swedish cop Martin Beck.

• A couple of happy TV notes: The A&E series Longmire, starring Robert Taylor, has been renewed for a third season, while Aaron Sorkin’s excellent HBO drama, The Newsroom, has also won a third season on the air. And now some bad news: A&E’s The Glades, a Florida-set cop series that starred Matt Passmore and boasted some good humor, has been cancelled after four seasons.

• The Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) received a nice boost today from the “Secretary of Explaining Things,” former President Bill Clinton, as well as from Super Bowl champs, the Baltimore Ravens. You can read more in The New Republic.

• Thanks to the distinctive blog Saved from the Paper Drive, I have finally been able to read entries in a couple of vintage comic book series: Maverick and 77 Sunset Strip.

• This is the first I’ve heard of Joe R. Lansdale’s 1989 novel, Cold in July, being made into a theatrical film, but the project has already picked up some major star power.

• Alan Ladd (This Gun for Hire) was born 100 years ago yesterday.

I mentioned here recently that Warner Home Video will release a complete, 24-episode DVD set of James Garner’s 1971-1972 Western TV series, Nichols, on September 10. Warner has now put up a “pre-order” page for this set, which includes a short preview of the pilot episode. If the whole DVD collection is of the same high quality as that three-minute clip, I’ll be very happy. You can assume that a copy of Nichols--The Complete Series will soon appear in my mailbox.


michael said...

Didn't Christie end the Poirot character so no one could feature him in a book after she died?

J. Kingston Pierce said...

Yes, she most certainly did. So I'm guessing what Sophie Hannah has in mind is some sort of "Curtain" prequel. We will see.


Kelly Robinson said...

I'm sort of surprised it took this long for Christie sequels to be commissioned.