Post by anothermanicmondas on Nov 3, 2018 22:41:30 GMT
for me that would be Crime novels by Donald E Westlake (including some of his pen-names) (a few of his books are disqualified - Tomorrow's crimes/Anarchaos (a planet with no law), Smoke (an invisible thief), Humans (God sends an angel to destroy the world) but most do not have fantasy elements and so are valid) Top of the list would be:- The Dortmunder series (The Hot rock, etc) the Parker series (written as Richard Stark) and the Grofield spin-offs the Samuel Holt Books (written as Samuel Holt) Dancing Aztecs the Ax The Hook
In some respects I find this question a little difficult to answer. Picking an example at random: 1984. There's nothing fantastical, magical, science fictiony, or futuristic about it, but I suspect it falls outside the definition intended for this thread.
There's no real point to this post, I'm just musing on the difficulty of defining things into neat little boxes.
I think Upton Sinclair is the writer who has had the most influence on me in his fiction,closely followed by Howard Zinn, Christopher Hitchens and Richard Dawkins though they're non-fiction of course. I also love Booth Tarkington, Iain Banks, Orwell, P. G. Wodehouse, Conrad, Sinclair Lewis and others. Individual titles? The Jungle,It Can't Happen Here, The Magnificent Ambersons, The Crow Road, Johnny Got His Gun.....too many to name really.
Shout out to The Spy Who Came in From the Cold for a tragic examination of spywork in the Circus.
Adding to that, Seven Pillars of Wisdom by T.E. Lawrence is phenomenal, both in how it's written and its subject matter.
Colonel Van der Post's Journey into Russia recounts the Soviet Union of the 1960s with a desire to know the truth behind the transnational posturing.
The full-fifty Saint novels by Leslie Charteris are rather fun. A fair variety of them feature non-fantasy elements (i.e. things that could and would be done by those of the era). I don't think there's anyone else in the world that quite writes as he does.
It kind-of, sort-of qualifies, but Oh Dear Silvia by Dawn French is incredible too. It's told entirely from the perspective of a woman in a coma as people come to visit her in the hospital.
Kate Mulgrew's Born With Teeth is the audiobook I always recommend in a heartbeat. From her childhood to her search for her baby, it's written with a tonne of raw, genuine emotion.
I absolutely love and adore science fiction and fantasy and it is the bulk of what I am reading.
But I also love crime fiction. Kathy Reichs and Rita Mae Brown are among my favorites. However, I think my alltime favorite crime novel is "The judge and his hangman" by Dürrenmatt. The hero of the story is just the very definition of bada$$.
Oh, and as an animal lover, I love James Herriot's books.
Honorary mentions: Mr. Penumbras 24 hour bookstore, and a few German crime and adventure novels I think have not even been translated...