With a Nod to the design for Penguin's original 'Mystery and Crime' series

What a fantastic way to start off an announcement. Of course it could be that I'm getting old, but increasingly I'm finding there's absolutely nothing wrong with acknowledging where we came from. Penguin's page http://www.penguin.com.au/green-popular-penguins goes onto say:

"Penguin’s new Green Popular Penguins series flaunts a bold green cover twist on the iconic Penguin triband for 50 crime fiction classics by 38 acclaimed writers at the very top of their game. Featuring perennial favourites this new collection also (re)introduces some of the most interesting and influential crime writers of all time and showcases some of the key storylines, plot twists and character archetypes that have played an instrumental role in defining the evolution of the crime fiction writing genre across more than 160 years from the late 1800s to the turn of the 21st century."

This release really deserves a mention for a number of reasons (not just yet another good excuse for a spot of book shopping - I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to building a shelf of these - proper ones, the paper versions with the classic look / tucked away for happy browsing), but because of the authors that have been incorporated.

The list of authors is really long - so check out Penguin's website, but it's a fascinating mix of the old, and the more recent. There are a lot of male authors, and some female (notably for AustCrime Mary Elizabeth Braddon in particular), and priced, as they are at $9.95 each they are accessible. 

Looking down from them all it's a bit of a meander down memory lane. A lot of them I've got in earlier editions (courtesy of the now gone I believe Murder Ink in Auburn, Melbourne). Many of them are books I remember from early days in the Ballarat Library, many of them more recent finds in second-hand and dusty bookshops all over Victoria (the car automatically stops in front of second hand bookshops - parking spot or no parking spot). But all of them are interesting inclusions.

I'm starting out with Lady Audley's Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon. And then I'm on a quest to get hold of the rest of them. One a month sounds like as good a plan as any - stand by my local bookshop - I'm going to have to get organised to make sure I don't miss any of this collection. Oh and stand by himself, might need another bookshelf somewhere..

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