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My Darling Detective: Book summary and reviews of My Darling Detective by Howard Norman

My Darling Detective

by Howard Norman

My Darling Detective by Howard Norman X
My Darling Detective by Howard Norman
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  • Published Mar 2017
    256 pages
    Genre: Mysteries

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Book Summary

A witty, engrossing homage to noir from National Book Award finalist Howard Norman.

Jacob Rigolet, a soon-to-be former assistant to a wealthy art collector, looks up from his seat at an auction - his mother, former head librarian at the Halifax Free Library, is walking almost casually up the aisle. Before a stunned audience, she flings an open jar of black ink at master photographer Robert Capa's "Death on a Leipzig Balcony." Jacob's police detective fiancée, Martha Crauchet, is assigned to the ensuing interrogation.

In My Darling Detective, Howard Norman delivers a fond nod to classic noir, as Jacob's understanding of the man he has always assumed to be his father unravels against the darker truth of Robert Emil, a Halifax police officer suspected but never convicted of murdering two Jewish residents during the shocking upswing of anti-Semitism in 1945. The denouement, involving a dire shootout and an emergency delivery - it's the second Rigolet to be born in the Halifax Free Library in a span of three decades - is Howard Norman at his "provocative ... haunting"* and uncannily moving best.  

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. An emotionally vibrant, keenly funny, genuinely suspenseful, and altogether spellbinding novel that will thrill Norman's fans and readers who relish creative improvisations on the grand noir tradition." - Booklist

"An unconventional, lively literary mystery." - Kirkus

"Norman punctuates literary noir's "darkness within" with both poignancy and a penchant for humor. Librarians will appreciate the nod to library and information science." - Library Journal

This information about My Darling Detective was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. The reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Author Information

Howard Norman Author Biography

Photo: Nancy Crampton

Howard A. Norman, is an American award-winning writer and educator. Most of his short stories and novels are set in Canada's Maritime Provinces. He has written several translations of Algonquin, Cree, and Inuit folklore. His books have been translated into 12 languages.

Howard Norman is a three-time winner of National Endowment for the Arts fellowships and a winner of the Lannan Award for fiction. His 1987 novel, The Northern Lights, was nominated for a National Book Award, as was his 1994 novel The Bird Artist.

Norman teaches in the MFA program at the University of Maryland. He lives in Washington, D.C., and Vermont with his wife and daughter.

Norman worked on a fire crew with Cree Indians after dropping out of High School. It is during this time that he became fascinated with their ...

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