This week on The Reading Life: More of Susan's interview with the fabulous Oscar-winner William Joyce about The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore and storyteller Coleen Salley, as well as a reading by poet/lawyer Chris Hannan.
Donald Sobol, the creator of the beloved character Encyclopedia Brown, died last week of natural causes, his family says. He was 87. The first in the Encyclopedia Brown series book was published in 1963, and the series has never gone out of print.
Crime novelist and forensic pathologist Jonathan Hayes has this appreciation of the character Sobol gave young readers.
While other boys got hooked on books about sports legends and race car drivers, there was something about Donald Sobol's boy detective Encyclopedia Brown that spoke to me right away.
Roger Williams, memorialized with a statue in Prospect Terrace Park, founded Providence in 1636. According to crime writer Bruce DeSilva, corruption set in not long after.
Credit / RightIndex via flickr
Dedicated in 1878, Providence's City Hall has seen its fair share of corruption.
Credit Jennifer Ludden / NPR
Author Bruce DeSilva shows NPR's Jennifer Ludden around Providence's America Street, where he imagines his main character, Liam Mulligan, lives "in an apartment furnished with a Salvation Army mattress, an ancient Frigidaire and not much else."
Providence, R.I., has a history of mob violence rivaling that of New York or New Jersey, but it comes with a gritty intimacy that could only be found in the nation's littlest state. Author Bruce DeSilva says that's what makes Providence the perfect place to set his crime fiction.
"It is big enough to have the usual array of urban problems," he says. "But it's so small that it's claustrophobic. It's very hard to keep a secret in places like that."