Author Topic: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May  (Read 38106 times)

JRob

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2020, 12:35:11 pm »
I posted this on the April thread but I see we've switched topics to Sports Mysteries to May.

There's a terrific Emma Lathen mystery that centers around the 1980 Lake Placid Olympics. It features John Putnam Thatcher, her banker sleuth, who investigates a fraud scheme that swindles Sloan Guaranty Trust out of a half million dollars. There's a murder of a skier, too. Lots of scenes with the athletes who are at odds with the Olympic committee.

There's a lot of athletes at odds with the Olympic committee these days as well, so the book would have some modern day relevance for sure. Do you know the name of the book? I think this one sounds quite interesting.

Becke Davis

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #16 on: April 20, 2020, 12:08:49 am »
I posted this on the April thread but I see we've switched topics to Sports Mysteries to May.

There's a terrific Emma Lathen mystery that centers around the 1980 Lake Placid Olympics. It features John Putnam Thatcher, her banker sleuth, who investigates a fraud scheme that swindles Sloan Guaranty Trust out of a half million dollars. There's a murder of a skier, too. Lots of scenes with the athletes who are at odds with the Olympic committee.
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Emma Lathen was so popular in the 70s - I read a lot of her books back then.

KiwiCraig

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #17 on: April 23, 2020, 02:37:04 am »
I love sports, including baseball (despite being a New Zealander), have tonnes of baseball movies in my old DVD collection and have enjoyed the Troy Soos book I read a couple of years ago. Need to read more of that series.

Given my love for sports and crime writing, I've often bemoaned there aren't more mysteries set in the sports world - it certainly seems like fertile ground given the big money, competition, egos, gambling, drugs, corruption, and other things entwined in real-life sports.


Other sports mysteries/crime novels I've read and are worth considering:

  • Harlan Coben's Myron Bolitar series (basketball player turned agent/investigator who gets entwined with crimes relating to some of his sports clients);
    THE FIXER by John Daniell (set in the world of French professional rugby, well written by a former professional player turned journalist)
    Dick Francis and Felix Francis' horse racing mysteries
    A SEASON IN THE SUN by Robert Rees - conspiracies and cricket in the Seychelles
    EXPOSED AT THE BACK by Arild Stavrum - murder in the European football world, written by a former pro player who delves into the locker rooms and dirty side of the game that may not be that well known (eg pro clubs and how they treat adolescent/young teenagers they sign etc).
    MATCHING THE EVIDENCE by Graham Smith - a crime novella set against the world of English football hooligans etc.
    FLASH & BONES by Kathy Reichs - a Tempe Brennan tale set against the world of NASCAR
    THE RULES OF BACKYARD CRICKET by Jock Serong - exceptional, Edgar shortlisted crime novel that's part coming-of-age tale, part crime drama, part meditation on toxic masculinity, all set against the world of cricket.





JRob

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #18 on: April 23, 2020, 09:39:09 am »
Thanks for the list Craig, a couple of those titles look pretty damn interesting.

Becke Davis

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #19 on: April 23, 2020, 12:58:16 pm »
I posted this on the April thread but I see we've switched topics to Sports Mysteries to May.

There's a terrific Emma Lathen mystery that centers around the 1980 Lake Placid Olympics. It features John Putnam Thatcher, her banker sleuth, who investigates a fraud scheme that swindles Sloan Guaranty Trust out of a half million dollars. There's a murder of a skier, too. Lots of scenes with the athletes who are at odds with the Olympic committee.

There's a lot of athletes at odds with the Olympic committee these days as well, so the book would have some modern day relevance for sure. Do you know the name of the book? I think this one sounds quite interesting.

According to Wikipedia, it's called GOING FOR THE GOLD. I thought this was interesting, I'm sharing it from this link:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emma_Lathen

Emma Lathen is the pen name of two American businesswomen: economic analyst Mary Jane Latsis (July 12, 1927 – October 29, 1997) and attorney Martha Henissart (born 1929). The pseudonym is constructed from two authors' names:[1] "M" of Mary and "Ma" of Martha, plus "Lat" of Latsis and "Hen" of Henissart.

Henissart and Latsis met as graduate students at Harvard,[2] where Henissart studied law and Latsis studied economics and public administration.[3][4] Latsis grew up on Chicago, and graduated from Wellesley College.[3] Henissart received her B.A. in physics from Mount Holyoke College in 1950.[5][4] Latsis would work for the CIA, the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization, and teach economics at her alma mater Wellesley College. Henissart practiced law in New York and then returned to the Boston area to become the chief legal counsel for Raytheon. When they began writing mysteries in the early 1960s they decided to use a pseudonym and maintain the secret of their identities to avoid any conflict with employers and clients.[4] Their identities as co-authors of the popular Lathen books remained a secret until 1977.[1][4]

As Lathen, they wrote 24 mystery novels starring John Putnam Thatcher, a Wall Street banker. According to Latsis, “We decided on a banker because there is nothing on God’s earth a banker can’t get into.”[4] They also wrote under the pseudonym R. B. Dominic; the 7 Dominic stories feature Congressman Benton Safford as the sleuth. Each book features events in a specific industry or activity with which Thatcher or Safford become involved in the course of their work. The books often refer to specific public events in their plotting; for example, When in Greece is mostly set in that country during the Colonels' Revolution,[3] and Going for the Gold involves the 1980 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid. Others relate to more general social and other trends, such as Death Shall Overcome[1] which links with the Civil Rights Movement.[4]

For each book they determined the basic structure and major characters, then wrote alternate chapters, with Latsis writing the first chapter, and Henissart the last. They would then do a joint rewrite to eliminate inconsistencies or conflicts.[4]

At the time of Latsis' death in 1997, the duo were eighty percent through a new book using the setting of the 1991 Persian Gulf War, but Henissart elected not to finish it.[4]

CarlaZ

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #20 on: April 25, 2020, 02:27:59 pm »
Sorry for forgetting to put the title in my post about Emma Lathen. That's pretty important!

Kate Stine, Editor

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #21 on: April 25, 2020, 02:39:30 pm »
I just love Emma Lathen. She's one of the few authors that I reread, her narrative voice is such a pleasure. I have all of her books.

We have a feature on Lathen coming up in our Fall Issue #165 by Michael Mallory.

Becke Davis

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #22 on: April 25, 2020, 11:52:53 pm »
I love sports, including baseball (despite being a New Zealander), have tonnes of baseball movies in my old DVD collection and have enjoyed the Troy Soos book I read a couple of years ago. Need to read more of that series.

Given my love for sports and crime writing, I've often bemoaned there aren't more mysteries set in the sports world - it certainly seems like fertile ground given the big money, competition, egos, gambling, drugs, corruption, and other things entwined in real-life sports.


Other sports mysteries/crime novels I've read and are worth considering:

  • Harlan Coben's Myron Bolitar series (basketball player turned agent/investigator who gets entwined with crimes relating to some of his sports clients);
    THE FIXER by John Daniell (set in the world of French professional rugby, well written by a former professional player turned journalist)
    Dick Francis and Felix Francis' horse racing mysteries
    A SEASON IN THE SUN by Robert Rees - conspiracies and cricket in the Seychelles
    EXPOSED AT THE BACK by Arild Stavrum - murder in the European football world, written by a former pro player who delves into the locker rooms and dirty side of the game that may not be that well known (eg pro clubs and how they treat adolescent/young teenagers they sign etc).
    MATCHING THE EVIDENCE by Graham Smith - a crime novella set against the world of English football hooligans etc.
    FLASH & BONES by Kathy Reichs - a Tempe Brennan tale set against the world of NASCAR
    THE RULES OF BACKYARD CRICKET by Jock Serong - exceptional, Edgar shortlisted crime novel that's part coming-of-age tale, part crime drama, part meditation on toxic masculinity, all set against the world of cricket.

You've listed several books I haven't read. I can't afford to order them all, so I'm adding them to my "when the library opens again" list!

Hannah Adams

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #23 on: May 04, 2020, 01:35:38 am »
I think I have that book by Emma Lathen, Going for the Gold. I also have some Dick Francis books. Since my library is closed and I haven't won the lottery, I'm going to read some sports mysteries that I already have. They might be re-reads, or maybe my bookshelves will have surprises in store.

Becke Davis

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #24 on: May 11, 2020, 11:17:04 am »
This month's feature is, by necessity, going to be pretty low key.  As far as I can tell, most libraries are still closed and the bookstores that are open seem to be open for pick-up only. (I find this especially sad, since one of the joys of bookstores is browsing the shelves and finding new books/authors.)

I'm not a huge sports fan but I do enjoy reading some of the sports-related mysteries we talked about. (By the way, my son used to play lacrosse - if any of you come across lacrosse mysteries, let me know. I'd love to read them!)

I like Harlan Coben's Myron Bolitar books a lot, and I've read ALL of the Dick Francis books, even though I've never attended a horse race in real life.

What are the sports you most enjoy reading about? I vaguely remember reading a mystery about ice skating once, but I can't find it and Google hasn't helped (so far).  I think I've read a mystery about croquet, too - if you'd even consider that a sport.

I guess I'd compare it to reading cozies about yarn shops, knitting and crocheting, etc. I don't knit or crochet but I do enjoy reading mysteries about those subjects if I like the author's voice and find the characters entertaining.

What are your favorite sports to read about in mystery novels? Your least favorites?

JRob

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #25 on: May 11, 2020, 07:43:26 pm »
I've liked reading about basketball, baseball and football.

I wouldn't want to read about stuff like lacrosse or croquet.


Becke Davis

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #26 on: May 11, 2020, 09:59:51 pm »
I've liked reading about basketball, baseball and football.

I wouldn't want to read about stuff like lacrosse or croquet.

I'm not particularly into croquet or cricket. I am interested in lacrosse and horse racing, and I've read some interesting books that featured hockey, baseball and football. I like basketball but don't remember reading any mysteries with a basketball theme.

Becke Davis

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #27 on: May 11, 2020, 10:22:47 pm »
I was just thinking, I would be interested to read a mystery centered around a marathon or triathalon. I remember a TV episode of Rizzoli and Isles that involved a murder at the Boston Marathon, but I don't think it was based on a book. I found a series on Goodreads that I want to check out. The author is Lynn Cahoon: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25605824-killer-run

I also found a lacrosse mystery, but it's for kids. I wish I'd known about this series when my son was young (if it was even written back then): https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50738081-the-lacrosse-mix-up?from_search=true&from_srp=true&qid=PSx1Xvz0VB&rank=1

JRob

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #28 on: May 12, 2020, 09:43:14 am »
Sportswriters Mike Lupica and John Feinstein have written  some pretty good sports books including some on basketball.

Lupica writes kid sports stories as well but the ones I mean are his "adult" mysteries.

Becke Davis

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Re: Sports-Related Mystery Novels - Feature for May
« Reply #29 on: May 12, 2020, 07:33:29 pm »
Sportswriters Mike Lupica and John Feinstein have written  some pretty good sports books including some on basketball.

Lupica writes kid sports stories as well but the ones I mean are his "adult" mysteries.

I came across several books by John Feinstein while I was searching for sports-related mysteries. Have you reviewed any of his books?