Other John Dickson Carr / Carter Dickson novels


(Facsimile Dust Jacket, Harper & Brothers (UK), 1930)

As the Spanish saying goes: There’s no two without three, and my two previous blog entries would have been left incomplete without the specific mention of John Dickson Carr’s other novels. So please do bear with me and do not forget some of the following titles that I’ll be reading in the nearby future. Stay tuned.

From Wikipedia: Besides Dr Fell and Sir Henry Merrivale, Carr mysteries feature two other series detectives: Henri Bencolin and Colonel March. [Besides other standalone novels]

A few of his novels do not feature a series detective. The most famous of these, The Burning Court (1937), involves witchcraft, poisoning, and a body that disappears from a sealed crypt in suburban Philadelphia; it was the basis for the French movie La chambre ardente (1962).

Carr wrote in the short story format as well. Julian Symons, in Bloody Murder: From the Detective Story to the Crime Novel: A History (1972), said: “Most of Carr’s stories are compressed versions of his locked-room novels, and at times they benefit from the compression. Probably the best of them are in the Carter Dickson book, The Department of Queer Complaints (1940), although this does not include the brilliantly clever H.M. story The House in Goblin Wood or a successful pastiche which introduces Edgar Allan Poe as a detective.”

During 1950, Carr wrote the novel, The Bride of Newgate, set during 1815 at the close of the Napoleonic Wars, one of the earliest full-length historical mysteries. The Devil in Velvet and Fire, Burn! are the two historical novels (involving also Time travel) with which he said he himself was most pleased. With Adrian Conan Doyle, the youngest son of Arthur Conan Doyle, Carr wrote Sherlock Holmes stories that were published in the 1954 collection The Exploits of Sherlock Holmes. He was also honored by the estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle by being asked to write the biography for the legendary author. The book, The Life of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, was published during 1949 and received generally favorable reviews for its vigor and entertaining style.

Henri Bencolin series: It Walks By Night (1930); Castle Skull (1931); The Lost Gallows (1931); The Waxworks Murder (1932); and The Four False Weapons (1937)

As John Dickson Carr: Poison in Jest (1932); The Burning Court (1937); The Emperor’s Snuff-Box (1942); The Bride of Newgate (1950); The Devil in Velvet (1951); The Nine Wrong Answers (1952); Captain Cut-Throat (1955); Patrick Butler for the Defense (1956); Fire, Burn! (1957); Scandal at High Chimneys (1959); The Witch of the Low Tide (1961); The Demoniacs (1962); Most Secret (1964); Papa La-Bas (1968); The Ghosts’ High Noon (1970); Deadly Hall (1971); and The Hungry Goblin (1972)

As Carter Dickson: The Bowstring Murders (1934); The Third Bullet (1937); Fatal Descent aka Drop to His Death (with John Rhode, 1939); The Department of Queer Complaints (1940); Fear Is the Same (1956)

In bold letters some of the titles I look forward to reading.

About the Author: John Dickson Carr (November 30, 1906-February 27, 1977) was a prolific American-born author of detective stories who also published under the pen names Carter Dickson, Carr Dickson, and Roger Fairbairn. He is generally regarded as one of the greatest writers of so-called “Golden Age” mysteries, complex, plot-driven stories in which the puzzle is paramount. Most of his many novels and short stories feature the elucidation, by an eccentric detective, of apparently impossible, and seemingly supernatural, crimes. He was influenced in this regard by the works of Gaston Leroux and by the Father Brown stories of GK Chesterton. Carr modeled his major detective, the fat and genial lexicographer Dr Gideon Fell, on Chesterton. (Source: gadetection).

4 thoughts on “Other John Dickson Carr / Carter Dickson novels”

  1. Just read It Walks by Night this weekend – my first Carr – and thought it was brilliant! Like you, I’m looking forward to getting to know him better. Enjoy!

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