1959book sign-up


In Bernadette’s honour, the first Australian image for Crimes of the Century: A South Australia Police Traffic Division Courtesy Patrol in 1959.

Every month on Past Offences I gather together blog posts about crime fiction written or filmed in a particular year. I’ve called it Crimes of the Century.

Bernadette of Reactions to Reading and Fair Dinkum Crime chose 1959 for January.

If you want to take part, you can! When you’ve written your post, just let me know below. I’ll gather them all together at the end of the month.

Anyone can play, so over to you…

Small print

  • Don’t be shy!
  • Just comment below to link to your blog post.
  • If you want to play but you haven’t got a blog, I’m happy to have you as a guest poster, or to link to Goodreads or Amazon.
  • Books, comics, films, plays and TV also welcome.
  • Sorry in advance if I miss you in the round-up, although I am getting better at that bit.

About pastoffences

Past Offences exists to review classic crime and mystery books, with ‘classic’ meaning books originally published before 1987.
This entry was posted in Classic crime round-up, Classic mystery book review, Crime fiction of the year challenge, Crimes of the Century, Information Received and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

56 Responses to 1959book sign-up

  1. A cunning twist, only one year previous than last month. Looks like it’ll be Three Cousins Die for me. Guess who wrote that one…

    I’ll try and find something non-Rhode as well… Not coming up with much though.


  2. I do realise this was very close to the previous year but I don’t actually own many eligible books and wanted to start the year well – I am excited to read Gin and Murder by Josephine Pullein-Thomson – it’s another of my scores from Greyladies press – it has two of my favourite things in the title so what can possibly go wrong 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  3. RogerBW says:

    From WIkipedia:

    Bloch, Psycho
    Carr, Scandal at High Chimneys
    Christie, Cat Among the Pigeons
    MacLean, The Last Frontier and Night Without End

    (Would MacLean’s books, which are basically thrillers with some element of working out what the villainous plot is, fall within the purview of the blog?)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. KerrieS says:

    I will try to participate next month. Even thinking of re-reading a Christie if I have to,

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Jose Ignacio says:

    I’ve just ordered The Galton Case by, Ross Macdonald. I hope it will arrive on time.


  6. Haven’t quite made my mind up what I will read yet but here are a few titles I found from this year:
    The Man Who Grew Tomatoes by Gladys Mitchell
    Singing in the Shrouds by Ngaio Marsh
    The Chinese Gold Murders by Robert Van Gulik
    The Widow’s Cruise by Nicholas Blake
    Hare Sitting Up by Michael Innes
    A Question of Time by Francis Duncan
    Not me Inspector by Helen Reilly
    Passage of Arms by Eric Ambler
    The Fingerprint by Patricia Wentworth
    Never Turn Your Back by Margaret Scherf
    The Torn Branch and Journey to the Hangman by Arthur Upfield

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Jose Ignacio says:

    I’ve just realised that Crush by Frédéric Dard was first published in French as Les Scélérats in 1959.


  8. JJ says:

    I have Miles Burton’s A Smell of Smoke to offer up; not sure if there#s anything ese, but will dig around and link up as appropriate…


    • Out of curiosity, did you get your copy from the Ramble House website? Are they a reliable provider? Given some of the dodginess surrounding Some Rhode and Burton reprints, thought I’d check first…


      • JJ says:

        Yup, I got that from RH direct — not through their website as such, but rather by just emailing Fender Tucker (whose email address is on the website) and asking him to send me some books. I’ll email you some deets shortly…

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Brad says:

    Yikes! Another tough year for me! I haven’t re-read Marsh, so I might tackle Singing in the Shrouds. I think I’ve already covered Cat Among the Pigeons elsewhere. And Psycho was 1960, not ’59, but I have a feeling I will write about the great Hitchcock film of ’59: North by Northwest!


  10. realthog says:

    Some interesting movies from 1959. I’ll probably opt for Maigret et l’affaire St Fiacre (with Jean Gabin, yahey!), though both Ivy League Killers and A Dog’s Best Friend look like good trashy fun.

    Thanks to Kate for her useful list. I might be tempted by the Wentworth. Or the Marsh.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. John says:

    Psycho was published by Simon & Schuster in 1959. It’s perfectly eligible and I hope someone picks that book. It’s very different from the movie.

    I’ll opt for Joan Fleming as well as some private eye books from American writers like M.E. Chaber, Henry Kane and maybe a Honey West book by G. G. Fickling.


  12. tracybham says:

    I will be doing The Manchurian Candidate. Maybe something else too.

    Here are more suggestions:

    For Old Crime’s Sake / Delano Ames
    The Case Of The Singing Skirt / Erle Stanley Gardner
    Murder Is Suggested / Frances Lockridge; Richard Lockridge
    The Listening Walls / Margaret Millar
    Dead Men Don’t Ski / Patricia Moyes
    Plot It Yourself / Rex Stout


  13. realthog says:

    I’d love to be proven wrong, but it seems Wentworth’s The Fingerprint, while first appearing in 1959 in the UK, was earlier published in the US in 1956. According to her FantasticFiction page (https://www.fantasticfiction.com/w/patricia-wentworth/) — which could of course likewise be flawed — she alas had nothing that came out that year.


  14. Planning to go with Jim Thompson’s THE GETAWAY …


  15. Pingback: ‘The 60s didn’t really know what to do with hats’: #1960book round up | Past Offences: Classic crime, thrillers and mystery book reviews

  16. Bev Hankins says:

    I’m in…off to see what’s lurking on the TBR mountain range.


    • Bev Hankins says:

      Okay…Here’s what’s available on the stacks (from most likely to less likely):

      Death of a Racehorse by John Creasey
      The Snake on 99 by Stewart Farrar
      The Hours Before Dawn by Celia Fremlin
      Plot It Yourself by Rex Stout
      The Secret of the Golden Pavilion by Carolyn Keene
      Death Among Friends & Other Stories by Cyril Hare
      Gently in the Sun by Alan Hunter
      Pass the Gravy by A. A. Fair
      The Toff & the Runaway Bride by John Creasey
      Not Me Inspector by Helen Reilly
      ‘Til Death by Ed McBain
      Third on a Seesaw by Neil MacNeil
      Crime & Mr. Campion by Margery Allingham


  17. nbmandel says:

    Thanks for the lists. I will try Wentworth’s THE FINGERPRINT and, if I can get it in time, HARE SITTING UP; maybe the Millar if it’s available. Tasty year!


    • nbmandel says:

      Hmm, I am not a careful reader, am I? Wentworth’s 1956. Pity. I do like Ross MacDonald but I read THE GALTON CASE last year. I think. I’ll see what else is out there.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Pingback: THE RIGHT DIRECTION: Hitchcock’s North by Northwest | ahsweetmysteryblog

  19. Pingback: Ivy League Killers (1959) | Noirish

  20. realthog says:

    Here’s a piece on the groundbreaking Canadian film noir Ivy League Killers (1959).

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Bev Hankins says:

    I don’t know if you’ll let this one sneak in or not. My edition says first published 1959. But, now, after reading it and going off to do a little background reading on Stewart Farrar, I find that The Snake on 99 was actually first published in Britain in 1958…..so first published in the U.S. in 1959.


  22. Pingback: #190: A Smell of Smoke (1959) by Miles Burton | The Invisible Event

  23. JJ says:

    Here is Burton’s A Smell of Smoke. Spoilers: it’s not very good…


  24. My book for 1959 is Gladys Mitchell’s The Man Who Grew Tomatoes (surely a prize for weirdest title) http://clothesinbooks.blogspot.co.uk/2017/01/book-of-1959-man-who-grew-tomatoes-by.html

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Pingback: The Widow’s Cruise (1959) by Nicholas Blake | crossexaminingcrime

  26. tracybham says:

    Never giving up, I tried again to put a link to my post in yesterday, but it won’t take my comment with a link.

    But I do have a post on The Manchurian Candidate by Richard Condon at Bitter Tea and Mystery, posted on January 11th.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. RogerBW says:

    First book for this month: Bloch’s Psycho.


  28. John says:

    Here’s the first of a couple I read: Miss Bones by Joan Fleming


  29. Pingback: Review: Crush (1959) by Frédéric Dard (trans Daniel Seton) – A Crime is Afoot

  30. Decided to skip the Rhode book (as generally perceived wisdom is that it’s crap) and go for Our Jubilee Is Death by Leo Bruce – was it a good choice? Find out at https://classicmystery.wordpress.com/2017/01/25/our-jubilee-is-death-by-leo-bruce/


  31. Pingback: THE GETAWAY (1959) by Jim Thompson | Tipping My Fedora

  32. Scott says:

    Terror Comes Creeping by Carter Brown


  33. Just managed to get my review of THE GETAWAY by Jim Thompson in under the wire (so to speak): https://bloodymurder.wordpress.com/2017/01/31/the-getaway-1959-by-jim-thompson/


  34. Pingback: MINISTRY OF FEAR (1943) by Graham Greene | Tipping My Fedora

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