The Realm of the Impossible

Edited by John Pugmire and Brian Skupin. Locked Room International, $19.99 trade paper (425p) ISBN 978-1-545339-22-0
Pugmire, the publisher of Locked Room International, and Skupin, co-editor of Mystery Scene Magazine, look beyond the usual suspects for this landmark reprint anthology, which establishes that the crafting of brilliant short impossible crime fiction is not an exclusively Anglo-American endeavor. The range and diversity of authors, as Otto Penzler notes in his foreword, “is a tribute to the detective skills of the editors, who have somehow unearthed a cornucopia of virtually unknown stories that deserve the attention they will now receive.” While Pugmire’s publishing house has already brought talented but obscure French and Japanese masters of fair-play detection to English audiences, fans of puzzle mysteries will delight in the work of gifted practitioners such as Ulf Durling (Sweden), Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay (India), and Afonso Carreiro (Portugal). Each of the 37 entries demonstrate how astute writers, even within the confines of the short story form, can trick the reader by concealing key clues in plain sight, as well as formulate clever variations on familiar challenges. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 07/31/2017
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