Whenever I finish reading a Carr book and hit “Publish” on my latest post, the hunt begins. I pull up a browser window and comb through some of my regular haunts, seeing if I can track down other reviews of the same book. I love seeing how others’ experience compare to mine – did they enjoy the same aspects? Did they hate it? Do they have some interesting insights that I hadn’t thought of? Well, the answer to that last question is always ‘yes’.
My post-read ritual has been fairly clumsy up to now – pull up Google and type in “John Dickson Carr”, the title of the book, and “wordpress” or “blogspot”. Sure, there are other review sites out there, but I tend to find the best material on these platforms. As you may expect, my searches lead me down some well tread paths – Beneath the Stains of Time, The Invisible Event, In Search of the Classic Mystery Novel, and several others.
So, for my own convenience, I now present a complete index of reviews. Here you’ll find all Carr books, in chronological order. In the case I’ve done a review, you can click on the title or the book cover. I’ve also thrown in reviews from some of my favorite blogs, which should save me some hunting in the future. The page is fairly amateurish and basic right now, but I hope to keep it up to date and flesh it out further over time.
Just the basic act of putting this together has been somewhat enlightening. All of the Carr publication lists that I’ve seen up to now divide his work between those published under his own name and those published as Carter Dickson. Combining his work together into a comprehensive list reveals some interesting insights:
- Aside from 1930, when It Walks by Night was published, Carr released at least two books a year up until 1943 – the year She Died a Lady came out.
- Carr released five books in 1938! And these aren’t throw aways either – The Four False Weapons, To Wake the Dead, The Crooked Hinge, The Judas Window, and Death in Five Boxes.
- 1954 is the first year that Carr didn’t release a book. This year was proceeded by The Cavalier’s Cup in 1953, and followed by Captain Cut Throat in 1955.
Of course, just because a book is released in a particular year doesn’t tell us anything about what Carr may have been working on during that time period.
I was also interested to see which books have been reviewed more than others. The Ten Teacups is the current champion, most likely because of recent activity by JJ at The Invisible Event. There are a lot of reviews of the so called classics – She Died a Lady, The Crooked Hinge, The Judas Window, Till Death Do Us Part, The Emperor’s Snuff Box, and The Case of the Constant Suicides. I was actually surprised that The Hollow Man and The Burning Court are under represented.
Puzzle Doctor over at In Search of the Classic Mystery Novel probably gets the prize for the most varied reviews – touching on all sorts of more obscure books like The Dead Man’s Knock and The Sleeping Sphinx.
It’s interesting to see that there are a number of books with no reviews. Of course, my current circle of blogs is fairly small, and I’m probably missing a few reliable reviewers. If you have any suggestions, please post to the comments and I’ll look to add them.
For those of you who enjoy reading others reviews, hopefully this provides you a quicker way to hunt them down. If you’re a fellow blogger looking to pick up a Carr book, maybe this can give you some consideration for the gaps that remain.