Sunday, June 12, 2011

Dorothy L Sayers

Tomorrow, June 13th, is the birth date of one of the greatest mystery writers of all time: Dorothy L Sayers, best known perhaps for her Lord Peter Wimsey series. I will never forget reading the first novel of hers and rapidly read my way through all of them. Periodically I reread them, especially after publication of some recent biographical materials. Gaudy Night remains my favourite, although you must read them in order. Lately, Jill Paton Walsh has delightfully continued the series. (After the drought, it was fantastic to be transported back in time and place).

On the centenary of her birth in 1993, a celebration of her work was published as a collection of essays by various esteemed authors, edited by Alzina Stone Dale. I recently discovered this well hidden in the stacks of our library and highly recommend your perusal. I loved three of the essays by Amanda Cross (Carolyn G Heilbrun), Anne Perry and Sharyn McCrumb. Each brought an interesting perspective and fascinating tidbits about Sayers works, her life and her legacy in a short compact form. Most of the essayists have strong connections to DLS. I always glean something new - CK Chesterton's whimsical The Man who was Thursday was a favourite book of hers (as well as Anne Perry). I need to find the Wimsey Papers as well, to make sure I have read those!