Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Back from Wales

I’m back after a few days’ break in Wales, where the weather was better than the forecasters prophesied, and I had another chance to marvel at the gorgeous landscape of one of my favourite countries.

Wales hasn’t featured in a great many crime novels - certainly very few in comparison to Scotland - though Lindsay Ashford writes an enjoyable series set in the mid-Wales resort of Borth, not far from Aberystwyth, where she and her amateur sleuth both live. The late David Williams and the under-rated Bill James are among those who have also created successful Welsh crime series.

One of the fascinations of Wales is its very rich heritage, as well as its apparently difficult yet intriguing language, to the preservation of which so much effort and money has been devoted over the past twenty or thirty years. For all the qualities of Ashford, James and Williams, I can’t think of a Welsh crime series that has yet exploited their distinctive potential to the full. A gap in the market, perhaps?

3 comments:

john morris said...

Wales is one of my favorite countries too, and it is odd that there's been no detective series set there. But let's not forget Roy Lewis, many of whose crime novels have a Welsh setting. "A Distant Banner" is particularly good, if you haven't read him before.

Martin Edwards said...

Thanks, John. I've read some of Roy Lewis's books set in the North East. but not the Welsh books. I'll bear that title in mind.
I also forgot to mention Malcolm Pryce; I haven't read him yet, but his series has a huge following.

maxine said...

I read the first Malcolm Pryce, which I enjoyed, but never felt I wanted to read more. What I call the Jaspar Fforde effect.

When I was young we always went on holiday to Aberystwyth, and many is the windy day I have spent on the sands of Borth!