Saturday, January 08, 2011

The Cat Scratches Back

Fans of David Dodge’s best-known thriller novel, To Catch a Thief, won’t want to miss tuning in to this BBC Radio 4 presentation:
To Catch a Thief, the 1952 novel by American author David Dodge (1910-1974) that inspired the classic film by Alfred Hitchcock, has been adapted as a radio play by Oxford writer and literary detective Jean Buchanan. The novel tells the story of retired jewel thief John Robie [aka “The Cat”], living quietly in a villa in the South of France. His peace is shattered and his liberty threatened when a copycat burglar begins operating in the area. Robie, who is free on a provisional parole granted for his service in the French Resistance during World War II, is the prime suspect. To prove his innocence, Robie determines to catch the thief himself. But his plans change when Francie Stevens, the daughter of one of the rich American tourists who is an irresistible target for the thief, catches him instead. Going back to Dodge’s original story, this 60-minute adaptation is markedly different from the more familiar cinematic version that starred Cary Grant and Grace Kelly. It is available online from January 8 to 15, 2011 on BBC Radio 4.

An accompanying program, “In Search of the Villa Noel Fleuri,” which documents Jean Buchanan’s quest to locate the small villa on the Côte d’Azur where Dodge and his family lived while he wrote the novel, is also available on BBC Radio 4. Jean is assisted in her hunt by Randal Brandt, creator of A David Dodge Companion, and Dirk Dominick, an expert in
To Catch a Thief film locations.
My thanks for Brandt for alerting me to this broadcast.

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