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There’s been a revolution in American popular fiction. The writers who dominated the bestseller lists a generation ago with blockbuster novels about movie stars and exotic foreign lands have been replaced by a new generation writing a new kind of bestseller, one that hooks readers with crime, suspense, and ever-increasing violence. Patrick Anderson, The Washington Post’s man on the thriller beat, calls this revolution “the triumph of the thriller,” and lists among its stars Thomas Harris, Michael Connelly, George Pelecanos, Dennis Lehane, Sue Grafton, and Elmore Leonard.
In his provocative, caustic, and often hilarious survey of today’s popular fiction, Anderson shows us who the best thriller writers are—and the worst. He shows how Michael Connelly was inspired by Raymond Chandler, how George Pelecanos toiled in obscurity while he mastered his craft, how Sue Grafton created the first great woman private eye, and how Thomas Harris transformed…[more]