Rendell, Ruth, 1930-....

Alternative names
Birth 1930-02-17

Biographical notes:

Contemporary British author of mystery and suspense novels.

From the description of [Papers], 1968?-1986 / Ruth Rendell. (Bowling Green State University). WorldCat record id: 37023133

Ruth Rendell was born on February 17, 1930 in London, England. She was educated in Essex, England and lives today in Suffolk with her husband and daughter. Rendell continues to write award-winning works of mystery and suspense and is widely regarded by audiences and critics alike to be one of the most skillful writers in the genre---often referred to as "The Queen of Crime," "The Mistress of Mystery," and "The New Agatha Christie," for example.

Ruth Rendell published her first novel ( From Doon With Death ) in 1964 and quickly began writing the two types of mysteries which have defined her career. On the one hand, Rendell first achieved fame with a series of police procedurals featuring the continuing exploits of Detective Chief Inspector Reg Wexford. These novels and stories follow a traditional "crime and clues" pattern, but even here Rendell has managed to demonstrate her deeper interest in the dark mysteries of the human mind and character. These latter concerns are given primary attention in the author's second set of writings (many written under the pseudonym of Barbara Vine) which have no continuing characters, few traditional mysteries, and which focus heavily upon a careful building of suspense, brooding atmosphere, and intricate psychological drama in the tradition of fellow Britons John Collier and Roald Dahl.

Ruth Rendell has won numerous awards for both types of her fiction. Of the manuscripts currently in the collection, the novel A Demon in My View was the recipient of a Gold Dagger Award in 1977 and the story "The New Girl Friend" won an Edgar Allan Poe Award in 1984. In 1983, Ruth Rendell was given special recognition for her contributions to popular fiction as the recipient of the Popular Culture Association Award.

From the guide to the Ruth Rendell Collection PCL MS-88, 1968-1986, (Bowling Green State University - Browne Popular Culture Library)


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  • Murder mystery, Spy network, London
  • American fiction
  • Mystery and detective stories


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