~by David W.
So far in our mystery challenge, we’ve invited you to cozy up with some amateur sleuths, explore the world, and travel back in time to enjoy great puzzlers from the Queen of Mystery and the World’s Greatest Detective. Now it’s time to get some professional help, as we turn up our collars, put on our gumshoes and enter the world of the private eye. Trouble is their business.
Back in the 1920’s as mystery buffs clamored to match wits withingenious Lords and spinsters to solve increasingly elaborate whodunnits, a brash new breed of American pulp writers dragged murder out of the drawing room and back into the mean streets. Nowhere is this new hardboiled approach to crime clearer than in Dashiell Hammett’s landmark 1929 novel Red Harvest, in which a two-fisted detective (whose name we never learn) metes out cruel justice on a gritty town so corrupt the locals call it Poisonville – “an ugly city… set in an ugly notch between two ugly mountains that had been all dirtied up by mining.” Inspired by Hammett’s own stint breaking strikes for the Pinkerton Detective Agency, this was a whole new breed of anti-heroic detective. Continue reading “Mystery Challenge: Professionals — Private Eyes”