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Presented for Innovation Experts September 20,2011 1-4 pm Becky Siegel Spratford http://raforall.blogspot.


Crime is terribly revealing. Try and vary your methods as you will, your tastes, your habits, your attitude of mind, and your soul is revealed by your actions. -- Agatha Christie I think to be driven to want to kill must be such a terrible burden. -- Ruth Rendell

Intro to RA Principles and Practices What is Crime Fiction?

Appeal and RA Interview Tips Genre, Subgenre and Format Distinctions Whole Collection RA Key Authors, Resources, and Trends

Collection Development Marketing Tips for Crime Fiction

Lists and Display Ideas

This class assumes an understanding of appeal factors and basic RA interviewing skills. Vocabulary of Appeal Match books by appeal and not plot Understand your own reader profile Understand genre classification
Genres are not separated by walls.

You cannot read everything! Speed Reading

by Georgine Olson but available in this book.

Read in varied genres; look for connections Genre a Day Reviews for appeal Magazines, newspapers and other popular media. Read what your patrons are reading.

Definitions (from Trotts Read On Crime Fiction; see handout) Classic Authors mentioned
Edgar Allen Poe Sir Arthur Conan Doyle G. K. Chesterton Agatha Christie Dorothy Sayers Ellery Queen

Dashiell Hammett Raymond Chandler Mickey Spillane Ross MacDonald

Police Procdeural
Hilary Waugh J.J. Marric Ed McBain

1970s and 80s: Women and Minorities

Marcia Muller Sue Grafton Gar Anthony Haywood Joseph Hansen and Richard Steveson Sara Paretsky

Genres We Will Consider

Mystery Suspense and Romantic Suspense Thriller Adventure Psychological Suspense Nonfiction: True Crime

Formats: Audio and Graphic Novels Further Crime Resources: Handout

The Appeal of Crime Fiction (Generalizations)

Fast paced and engrossing often because of the compressed time frame Identification with the investigator, but other characters can range from stereotypical to eccentric and unique; series characters also common Often multiple points of view with the hero and villain Investigative elements are key

Plots can range from story centered to character centered, but all require plot twists and a resolved if not closed ending Can contain violence and strong language, but there have never been more cozy options. The setting can range from ancient times (Steven Saylors Gordianus the Finder) to the future (J.D. Robbs Eve Dallas) Readers may crave a certain frame The tone, style and language run the gamut Series are a huge appeal factor

The RA Conversation for Crime Fiction Readers

Type of investigator Subgenre considerations Historical (time and place) and Cozy are big Level of violence Tone, style, language, frame Character vs. plot TV or Movie comparisons Fiction vs. Nonfiction Format preferences

Puzzles with clues provided Crime, generally murder, solved by investigator Battle of wits (investigator v. villain; investigator v. reader) Good v. evil Series characters Stories are intricately plotted Full spectrum of pacing Resolved, if not always closed, ending Judge a book by its cover

Amateur detective (including but not limited to cozy) Classics Historical International Police Procedural Police Detective Private Investigator Humorous

Michael Connelly Diane Mott Davidson Henning Mankell Louise Penny Jacqueline Winspear

Nevada Barr Janet Evanovich Donna Leon P.D. James Anne Perry Elizabeth Peters Peter Robinson C.J. Box

Each Library will have specific authors who are locally popular And dont forget classic (dead) authors. I have particular luck with:
Agatha Christie Dashiell Hammett Robert Parker Rex Stout

Special Interests More development of the main character Cozy and Humorous Mysteries are huge
Intelligent Cozies new sub-sub genre? Not much actual mystery

Especially WWI to 1960

Blurring between suspense and mystery within novels and authors writing both Paranormal Resources: Handout

A plot in which tension builds; menacing atmosphere permeates throughout (prologue) Multiple points of view: hero and villain Compressed time frame Protagonist in peril Twists Fast paced, resourceful heroes Good v. evil Closed happy ending

Not really subgenres but nuances Soft Suspense Mary Higgins Clark Harder-edged suspense James Patterson, Jeffrey Deaver, John Sandford Romantic Suspense

Lee Child Harlan Coben Lisa Gardner Tess Gerritsen Karin Slaughter

Romantic Suspense
Christine Feehan Iris Johansen Jayne Ann Krentz/Amanda Quick/Jayne Castle J.D. Robb /Nora Roberts Lauren Willig

Names 2 slides ago Tami Hoag Julie Garwood Erica Spindler Tana French Kate Atkinson Stieg Larsson John Hart

Romantic Suspense
Sandra Brown Linda Howard Karen Robards Catherine Coulter (FBI Series) Suzanne Brockman

Stalking, Stalking, Stalking More graphic and bloody Lots of views into the bad guys mind Used to only be stand alone; now lots of series. Supernatural and Literary options on the rise More investigative; blurring into Mystery Established Romantic Suspense moving to Suspense while new Rom. Suspense coming from Romance Resources: Handout

Legal Thriller Medical/Forensic Thriller Techno Thriller Espionage/Terrorism Thriller Crime/Caper Thriller

Conspiracy Thriller Financial/Corporate Thriller Bio/Eco Thriller Political Thriller Supernatural Thriller

David Baldacci Linda A. Fairstein Mira Grant Carl Hiaasen Daniel Silva

Robin Cook John Grisham John LeCarre Alan Furst Lisa Scottoline Brad Meltzer Jonathan Maberry (Joe Ledger Series) Continued Series
Robert Ludlum Ian Fleming

Terrorism TV shows (All of those legal dramas) Ancient Conspiracies catching up to Contemporary Lots of Nonfiction Crossovers to think about Resources: Handout

Traditional Adventure will not be as appealing to your Mystery readers, but genre is changing What you need to look for
Adventure can be more over the top than other genres solves crime and saves world Exotic locales or military settings Not much characterization; fast paced and action oriented with a happy ending Clues not always there; outrageous solutions Sea-faring adventure does not fit Crime appeals

Adventure authors who may appeal to Crime Fiction readers:

Dan Brown Clive Cussler Jack DuBrul WEB Griffin (now with son) Jack Higgins Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child Matthew Reilly James Rollins

Thriller is slowly absorbing traditional adventure which is increasing its crossover appeal with crime fiction fans More women readers True Adventure Resources on Handout

A mix of Mystery, Thriller, and Horror Tension derived from mental fears Produce a chill and play with our minds Claustrophobic worlds; unease Literary style; lots of twists Character and mood at forefront Endings unresolved and could be unhappy

Peter Abrahams Carol Goodman Jeff Lindsay Chelsea Cain Ruth Rendell New Names To Watch:
Gillian Flynn S.J. Watson

Alfred Hitchcock Thomas H. Cook Frances Fyfield Patricia Highsmith Dean Koontz Thomas Harris

Val McDermid Minette Walters Single titles of note:

Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King Await Your Reply by Dan Chaon A Simple Plan by Scott Smith The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters

Used to be only standalone; now lots of series More twisted and violent Hero is not all good like in suspense; has dark issues Many traditional mystery writers and literary fiction authors are exploring this genre Do natural language searches to find titles Some sources classify it as psychological horror Specific resources are limited: Handout

True Crime
May be more appealing to some fans-- Truth Killer caught and brought to justice Date quickly No detail spared Safe exploration of dark side of humanity Readalikes for authors and specific titles In Cold Blood by Capote started the narrative nonfiction genre

Ann Rule John Douglas Diane Fanning Joe McGinniss Robert Graysmith Vincent Bugliosi James B. Stewart James Swanson Erik Larson

Forensic, journalistic, bio/autobio, famous/infamous FBI, police, reporters, lawyers, mafiapov is wide Appeal: old books as good as new ones, maybe better

Whole Collection RA Readalikes for titles and authors Compilations

Awards and Resources: Handout

Edgar and Dagger for True Crime (see Mystery)

Mystery and Suspense work well on audio

Tension builds slower Cant skip ahead as easily

Patrons will cross genres more with audio Some of the best readers ply trade here Dont forget that superheroes fight crime Frank Miller and Alan Moore do more sophisticated GNs for crime fans

Dont forget: this is a part of Customer Service Take pulse of your collection at least once a year
What are your most popular titles/authors? Where are you lacking? Who is winning the awards? What are the trends?

Keep shelves neat and clean Replace classic and popular titles Weed

Merging Crime Collections More space Patron displeasure/education Clearer catalog records and stickering Display Ideas Overlooked stars (Use Overbooked) Show off new popular subgenres (Use Stop Youre Killing Me) Crime stories not from the mystery section Sure bets (by title or author) Use face out options whenever available Post series lists for most popular authors Consider special paperback shelving, not just spinners

Erik Larson Devil in the White City Ann Rule The Stranger Beside Me Harlen Coben Tell No One Michael Connelly The Black Echo Ruth Rendell 13 Steps Down Mary Higgins Clark On the Street Where You Live P.D. James A Taste for Death Diane Mott Davidson Dying for Chocolate Nevada Barr Choose by location preference Louise Penny Still Life