Thursday, February 4, 2016

Abby Geni

Abby Geni is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and the recipient of an Iowa Fellowship. “Captivity” won first place in the Glimmer Train Fiction Open and was included in The Best American Short Stories 2010; it was also selected for inclusion in New Stories from the Midwest.

She is the author of the novel The Lightkeepers and the story collection The Last Animal.

Recently I asked Geni about what she was reading. Her reply:
There is nothing better than a good mystery. Whenever I have the chance to read for pleasure, rather than research or work, I gravitate toward the pillars of the golden age of mysteries: Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, Rex Stout, Dorothy Sayers, Georgette Heyer, and Arthur Conan Doyle. I enjoy the way mysteries return me to my childhood—staying up late with the lights burning, eyes heavy with sleep, at once horrified and thrilled, promising myself I’ll stop reading and get some rest after the next chapter, and then the next chapter, and then the next chapter.

It’s always a sad day when I have read everything ever written by of one of my favorite authors. When I had exhausted Agatha Christie’s marvelous canon, I was crushed. When I got to the end of Sherlock Holmes, I was devastated. It’s terrible to feel that there are no new books to discover, no new mysteries to solve. I try to remember that there’s always another great option out there. Still, it can be hard to take the leap of faith and move from an author I adore to one I don’t know.

Lately I’ve been reading the works of Margery Allingham. Though I’m just starting her Albert Campion series, I’m already struck by her wit, her propulsive plotting, and her intricately drawn characters. On my shelf right now is Police at the Funeral, with Flowers for the Judge and Look to the Lady up next. I won’t spoil the plot by giving too much, but I will say that I recommend Allingham highly for anyone who loves mysteries.
Visit Abby Geni's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Lightkeepers.

--Marshal Zeringue