Tuesday, June 14, 2016

John Farrow

John Farrow is the pen name of Trevor Ferguson, who has written numerous novels and plays, all to extraordinary acclaim. His Émile Cinq-Mars crime series has been published around the world and cited by Booklist as "one the best series in crime fiction today", while Die Zeit in Germany suggested that it might be the best series ever.

Farrow's newest novel in the Émile Cinq-Mars series is Seven Days Dead.

Recently I asked the author about what he was reading. His reply:
Mysterious Fragrance of the Yellow Mountains by Yasuko Thanh, a first novel by a fellow Canadian, is set in 1908 during the French rule of Saigon. A reader senses the impending tragedy that is yet to come to Vietnam within the dynamics of a group of blundering revolutionaries, and the times are granted a clarity of language that is as captivating as it is illuminating. No, it’s not a crime novel, not exactly, although murder is afoot and the main characters will find themselves on the run. The story is intriguing, the setting seductive, and the complexity of the characters is portrayed with grit, wisdom and humour. Loved it.

As well, it’s been more than fifty years since I’ve read James M. Cain. I came across an Everyman’s Library collection of his novels a week or two ago, and found my memory of his work deficient. I wasn’t into crime fiction at the time, although Cain’s work transcends the form. As well, I’m a different reader now than I was fifty years ago, so I was curious to discover how I’d react. I’ve started with The Postman Always Rings Twice, and while this and that comes back to me as I go, it’s mostly a revelation. (Thanks, faulty memory. You do have a purpose.) So far, at least, I’m probably enjoying this second reading more than the first. Then again, I don’t really remember the first time. Oddly, I’m finding that I’m critical where I might not have been way back when, but also that I appreciate many of his moves even more.
Visit Trevor Ferguson's Facebook page.

The Page 69 Test: Seven Days Dead.

My Book, The Movie: Seven Days Dead.

--Marshal Zeringue