Sisters In Crime
Peter Owen Publishers
The companion volume to The Darker Sex and The Dreaming Sex, this absorbing anthology of early women's crime fiction belongs on the bookshelf of any serious crime fan. Many of the leading writers of crime fiction are women - Agatha Christie, Ruth Rendell et al - but it still comes as a surprise to many that the first full-length detective novel was by one Metta Fuller whose The Dead Letter, under the alias Seeley Regester, appeared as far back as 1866, predating Wilkie Collins' The Moonstone by two years. In fact, women writers were instrumental in developing the new genre of detective fiction. This anthology selects stories from the late Victorian and Edwardian era including one of the Violet Strange stories by Anna Katharine Green, known as the "mother of the detective novel;" one of the Loveday Brooke stories by Catherine Pirkis, featuring an early private woman detective; and a story by the Australian writer Mary Fortune, who had written more than 500 detective novels by the time Edward VII came to the throne.