For those in the UK who’ve not yet seen Welsh crime drama Hinterland, now is your chance. Episode One will air again on BBC4 on Monday 28 April at 9.00pm. Further details are available from The Radio Times and an earlier blog post of mine, which contains a spoiler-free review.
And for viewers beyond our shores, the good news is that Hinterland has been picked by Netflix, so crime fans in Canada and the US will shortly be able to enjoy its delights too. Cymru Crime is on its way!
In other news:
The good people at Penguin are still sending me a Simenon a month from their freshly translated Inspector Maigret series, and I’ve had a lovely time working my way through the latest three, The Yellow Dog, Night at the Crossroads and A Crime in Holland (all originally published in 1931). The latter involves a French lecturer suspected of murder and is therefore right up my street (although I hasten to add that all the French lecturers I know are model citizens). I’ve updated the Maigret page – we’re now up to a total of seven novels.
Holding on to the Dutch theme… I’ve just received a copy of Lonely Graves (Mulholland Books/Hodder), which is set in Amsterdam, and authored by ‘Britta Bolt’, the pseudonym of German Britta Böhler and South African Rodney Bolt. Böhler is a former lawyer in international law, while Bolt has a background in travel writing – an ideal pairing for a crime novel set in foreign climes. Their ‘detective’ is municipal government employee Pieter Posthumus, who arranges so-called ‘lonely funerals’ for those dying without family or means, and who decides to investigate when a young Moroccan is found drowned. I’m a few chapters in, and am enjoying the unusual scenario and Amsterdam setting. The novel is the first in ‘The Posthumus Trilogy’ – looks promising.
Meanwhile, I’ve also been exploring Turkish German novels for the Crime Fiction in German volume, including Jakob Arjouni’s Kayankaya series and Akif Pirinçci’s ‘Felidae’ series (in which Francis the cat detective can be said to represent a migrant perspective). The opening novel has been made into a rather good animated film, but be warned that it’s not suitable for children, as it explores some rather adult themes. Both series are available in English translation and have met with considerable success.
There are also some interesting recent developments, such as Su Turhan’s ‘Kommissar Pascha’ series, featuring Munich Turkish-German police inspector Zeki Demirbilek (not yet translated). My Swansea University colleague Tom Cheesman’s book, Novels of Turkish German Settlement (Camden 2007) has also been very helpful in terms of understanding wider issues relating to migrant experience and identity in Germany, and pointing the way to some crime fiction gems.