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Literary Mysteries May 21, 2012

Posted by Carolyn Burns Bass in literary fiction, mystery.
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Media Monday for May 21, 2012: Esquire to Publish Books Devoted to Men’s Fiction. Esquire’s new series of “Fiction for Men,” intends to define and push the term into the literary lexicon.

Emily St. John Mandel in LitChat

Emily St. John Mandel (Photo: Dese’Rae L. Stage)

Literary mysteries take readers beyond the who-did-it and into the psychological playground of murder and mayhem. This Wednesday in #litchat we’ll discuss how literary mysteries differ from mainstream or genre mysteries and why they are often misunderstood. On Friday, Emily St. John Mandel joins us to discuss her new literary mystery, The Lola Quartet.

The Lola Quartet takes readers through the lives of several individuals tied together through their high school association as a popular jazz ensemble called the Lola Quartet. Skipping about through the ten years since the members played their last gig together, several of the characters enter the story with solos that segue into a story of ambition, desperation and murder. Gavin, who returns disgraced from his job as a journalist in NYC to the Florida suburb where he once played trumpet for the quartet, sets the tone of the novel when he begins a search for his high school girlfriend who may be the mother of a child conceived those ten years ago. Each of the former quartet members play a crucial part in the score of this brilliant literary masterpiece.

Emily St. John Mandel was born on the west coast of British Columbia, Canada. She studied dance at The School of Toronto Dance Theatre and lived briefly in Montreal before relocating to New York. Her previous novels are Last Night in Montreal (a June 2009 Indie Next pick and a finalist for ForeWord Magazine’s 2009 Book of the Year) and The Singer’s Gun (winner of an Indie Bookseller’s Choice Award, #1 Indie Next pick for May 2010, long-listed for both The Morning News’ 2011 Tournament of Books and the 2011 Spinetingler Awards.) She is a staff writer for The Millions. She has an essay in the recent anthology The Late American Novel: Writers on the Future of the Book (Soft Skull, 2011), and her short fiction will appear in Venice Noir, an anthology forthcoming from Akashic Books in 2012. She is married and lives in Brooklyn.

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