Author Archives: Cavershamragu

Conduct Unbecoming (1975) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

This highly unusual military drama is set in 1880s India and stars Stacy Keach, Richard Attenborough and Christopher Plummer with Susannah York as the widow of a regimental hero who accuses an unpopular new recruit of assault. Michael York is the … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Bryan Forbes, Courtroom, India, Scene of the crime, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | Tagged , , , , | 32 Comments

EXPO 58 by Jonathan Coe

Jonathan Coe is one of my favourite authors, a witty and wise chronicler of British mores, foibles and eccentricities who, in terms of book sales, is apparently appreciated even more on the Continent than he is at home – but … Continue reading

Posted in Alfred Hitchcock, Brussels, Cold War, Espionage, Jonathan Coe | 18 Comments

SO LONG AS YOU BOTH SHALL LIVE (1976) by Ed McBain

The 87th Precinct series, after the intimate highlight of Blood Relatives, reaches back to its past for a much more expansive story centered around the wedding of Bert Kling, whose bad luck when it comes to love sadly continues. This novel … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, 87th Precinct, Columbo, Ed McBain, Friday's Forgotten Book, New York, Police procedural | 38 Comments

FEAR (1940) by L. Ron Hubbard

Well, I didn’t think I’d ever review a book by L. Ron Hubbard here at Fedora! But this early tale of suspense and horror was written well before the author made his fortune by creating sci-fi religions, and has had some … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Amnesia, L. Ron Hubbard | 38 Comments

Ten Little Indians (1965) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

With the news that the BBC are to adapt Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None, I thought this might be a good opportunity to look at the original novel and earlier screen incarnations, especially the 1965 cinema version released … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Agatha Christie, Philip MacDonald, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | 67 Comments

THE TODD DOSSIER (1969) by Robert Bloch

This medical thriller was the first novel by Robert Bloch that I ever read, though I didn’t know it at the time. The reason I picked it up was because it was credited to Collier Young, the creator of Ironside … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Friday's Forgotten Book, Novelisation, Robert Bloch | 52 Comments

NO ORCHIDS FOR MISS BLANDISH (1939) by James Hadley Chase

What can you say about this infamous crime story – that as a book and again as a film it was once the most notorious title in the UK? That it was critically lambasted by George Orwell? That it sold … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Film Noir, James Hadley Chase, Kansas City, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | 38 Comments

THE VENGEFUL VIRGIN (1958) by Gil Brewer

This is a ripe piece of pulp noir, from its alliterative, catchpenny title to the de rigeur cover art featuring piles of cash, a disrobed woman and a gun. One of the many  paperback originals written by Gil Brewer in … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Florida, Friday's Forgotten Book, Gil Brewer, Hard Case Crime, James M. Cain, Noir | 29 Comments

Mr Arkadin (1955) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

In considering this quirky and delirious movie and book by Orson Welles, I am reminded of Winston’s Churchill’s quote about pre-war Russia: “It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma; but perhaps there is a key.” Arkadin tells … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Amnesia, France, Italy, Mexico, New York, Novelisation, Orson Welles, Spain, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | 26 Comments

BLOOD RELATIVES (1975) by Ed McBain

We really like Ed McBain’s 87th Precinct books here at Fedora and for the last couple of years have been re-reading them in chronological order (links to all the reviews can be found here). All are lively and engrossing, with … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, 87th Precinct, Claude Chabrol, Ed McBain, Friday's Forgotten Book, New York, Police procedural | 36 Comments

BREAD (1974) by Ed McBain

After much too long a break, Cotton Hawes is brought back centre-stage for this story involving drugs, porn, insurance scams, pyromania and a few murders. It also gives a pungent, heartfelt depiction of the degradation of the slums of the city … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, 87th Precinct, Ed McBain, Friday's Forgotten Book, New York, Police procedural | 26 Comments

HAIL TO THE CHIEF (1973) by Ed McBain

This story of rival gangs plays some interesting narrative tricks and demonstrates an unusually strong satirical and political edge but is usually seen as one of the weaker entries in  the 87th Precinct series. How does is stand up today? “Why? What do … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, 87th Precinct, Ed McBain, Friday's Forgotten Book, New York, Police procedural | 33 Comments

NOTHING IN HER WAY (1953) by Charles Williams

“Charles Williams remains the best kept secret in noir fiction” – Max Allan Collins Charles Williams (1909-1975), one of the masters of the 1950s paperback original, has gone through a long period of neglect, probably more read in translation on … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Charles Williams, Friday's Forgotten Book, Noir, Stark House Press | Tagged , | 29 Comments

Women of Twilight (1953) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

Nothing to do with Stephenie Meyer, this stark social drama (aka Twilight Women) was based on Sylvia Rayman’s groundbreaking all-female play. The up-and-coming Lois Maxwell and Laurence Harvey co-star, though the film is dominated by René Ray as unlikely heroine Viviane and Freda Jackson … Continue reading

Posted in Film Noir, Hammer Studios, London, Noir on Tuesday, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | 24 Comments

Fedora’s 400,000 visits

Well, we pause briefly for a minor celebration here at Fedora … Late yesterday this blog sailed past its 400,000th visit, which seems incredible to me – and that’s not including the 113,000 plus visits from spammers (a curse on their … Continue reading

Posted in 'In praise of ...' | 69 Comments

THE CASE OF THE LUCKY LEGS (1934) by Erle Stanley Gardner

The third in the Perry Mason series is set in the world of crooked beauty pageants and hails from back when the character was a pretty hardboiled lawyer who spent most of time racing around outside the courtroom. “I always take risks. … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Erle Stanley Gardner, Friday's Forgotten Book, Los Angeles, Perry Mason, San Francisco | 43 Comments

Vienna – series 1

This CD box (also available as a download) comprises three science fiction adventures that follow on from The Memory Box, featuring glamorous bounty hunter Vienna Salvatori, played by the equally glam Chase Masterson. The following review is offered as part … Continue reading

Posted in Audio Review, Big Finish, Jonathan Morris, Nev Fountain, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | Tagged | 16 Comments

BLACK WATER (1992) by Joyce Carol Oates

Like Joe Klein’s Primary Colors, this roman à clef takes a notorious American political incident (though in this case one from the 1970s) and fictionalises it to provide some fascinating insight into the people behind the famous faces. A Democratic … Continue reading

Posted in Joyce Carol Oates | Tagged | 84 Comments

Police Python 357 (1976) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

Also known as The Case Against Ferro, this French policier was adapted (uncredited) from Kenneth Fearing’s classic suspense novel, The Big Clock. It stars Yves Montand as a cop who carries the eponymous Colt Magnum once favoured by law enforcement … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, France, Kenneth Fearing, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | Tagged , , | 38 Comments

LET’S HEAR IT FOR THE DEAF MAN (1973) by Ed McBain

Yes, it’s the return of the fiendish nemesis of the 87th Precinct in his third appearance in 12 years (he appears approximately once a decade). Despite the fact that both of his previous capers were undone by sheer bad luck, he … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, 87th Precinct, Ed McBain, Friday's Forgotten Book, New York, Police procedural | 41 Comments

Chase a Crooked Shadow (1958) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

This clever mystery with a strong cast and memorable payoff stars Anne Baxter as an heiress driven to near madness when a man turns up claiming to be her dead brother and everybody but her believes him. Richard Todd is … Continue reading

Posted in Amnesia, Spain, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | Tagged , , | 37 Comments

THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE (1934) by James M. Cain

James M. Cain’s debut novel was the publishing sensation of 1934 – and still packs a punch thanks to its twisty plot, sexually charged protagonists and violent emotional undercurrent. Based loosely on a real-life case, this obliquely titled tale of … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Film Noir, Friday's Forgotten Book, James M. Cain | 39 Comments

I Thank A Fool (1962) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

Susan Hayward and Peter Finch star in this awkwardly titled romantic mystery, which took the eponymous 1958 book by Audrey Erskine Lindop - a neo-Gothic remnant of the ‘Had I But Known’ school - and refashioned it into a legal whodunit about … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Audrey Erskine Lindop, Ireland, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | Tagged | 18 Comments

THE LOTTERY, OR THE ADVENTURES OF JAMES HARRIS (1949) by Shirley Jackson

This volume has appeared under a number of variant titles over the years but is principally known for its inclusion of that macabre and enigmatic classic, ‘The Lottery’, which along with The Haunting of Hill House probably remains Shirley Jackson’s best known single work. … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Friday's Forgotten Book, Shirley Jackson | 38 Comments

The Sicilian Clan (1969) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

As a youngster this thriller really got my attention. Sure, the fleeting nudity probably had something to do with it and the hypnotic Ennio Morricone score is truly unforgettable but this was a film where crooks, thieves, murderers and cops all … Continue reading

Posted in Ennio Morricone, France, Jean Gabin, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | Tagged , , , , | 24 Comments

THE CAVES OF STEEL (1954) by Isaac Asimov

Thousands of years in the future the cities of Earth are housed in domes, the eponymous caves, and humans are too agoraphobic to leave. Settlers from their off-world colonies come back after centuries but insist on living separately and promoting … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Friday's Forgotten Book, Isaac Asimov, New York, Science Fiction, The 2014 Sci-Fi Experience | Tagged | 47 Comments

The Tenth Victim (1965) – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

Robert Sheckley’s ‘The Seventh Victim’, a prescient short story of murder as public spectacle, was first published in 1953, well before The Hunger Games. Elio Petri adapted it as the Ursula Andress movie, The 10th Victim, also the title of Sheckley’s 1966 novelisation. It … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Friday's Forgotten Book, New York, Rome, The 2014 Sci-Fi Experience, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | Tagged , | 38 Comments

SADIE WHEN SHE DIED (1972) by Ed McBain

This is one of the most admired books in the 87th Precinct series by Ed McBain (aka Evan Hunter) and was included in the Crime Writer’s Association top 100 mysteries list that Rich  has been looking at over at his … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, 87th Precinct, Ed McBain, Five Star review, Friday's Forgotten Book, Georges Simenon, New York, Police procedural | 32 Comments

The Groundstar Conspiracy – Tuesday’s Overlooked Film

George Peppard plays a government agent so paranoid that he even bugs his own phone in this cult classic loosely based on LP Davies’ The Alien (which I previously reviewed here). Michael Sarrazin co-stars as the scientist whose face and memories have to … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, Amnesia, Douglas Heyes, Friday's Forgotten Book, LP Davies, The 2014 Sci-Fi Experience, Tuesday's Overlooked Film | Tagged , , | 36 Comments

THE ALIEN (1968) by LP Davies

Leslie Purnell Davies was enormously prolific in the 60s and early 70s, crafting some twenty novels that combined SF and mystery in a highly distinctive fashion. This one later served as the basis for the cult classic, The Groundstar Conspiracy … Continue reading

Posted in 2014 Book to Movie Challenge, 2014 Vintage Mystery Challenge Bingo, Friday's Forgotten Book, LP Davies, The 2014 Sci-Fi Experience | 45 Comments