by Bill Crider
The last time I wrote about the Killer Hobbies blog (killerhobbies.blogspot.com) back in 2009, I was working on a laptop far from home because at that point Hurricane Ike had left my house without power for nine days. I’m on my familiar desktop now, however, and I can report that while in 2009 there were seven writers maintaining the blog, there are now four who are posting regularly: Monica Ferris, Linda O. Johnston, Tracy Weber, and Betty Hechtman. They’re still talking about their hobbies and their books, along with giving reports on the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books and the Sisters in Crime Hollywood event. They also have occasional guest posters, so the updates are regular and interesting.
The Digest Enthusiast is a magazine about digest magazines, and it’s always chock full of interesting articles. Now there’s a related blog (larquepress.com/blog) that’s well worth your time. Recent posts have included a brief look at Harry Kemelman’s first published story, “The Nine-Mile Walk,” which appeared in EQMM in 1947, a couple of entries about The Mysterious Traveler Mystery Reader that comment on stories by Robert Arthur and August Derleth, and a review of a short story in the current issue of Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction.
Crossexaminingcrime (crossexaminingcrime.wordpress.com) is devoted mostly to reviews of Golden Age mysteries like The Mystery at Stowe by Vernon Loder or The Factory on the Cliff by A.G. Macdonell. The reviews are thorough, thoughtful, and engaging, but there’s a lot more on the site, including links to Top Ten lists, quizzes, and puzzles. One feature is a list of translated crime fiction, with links to reviews of many of them. This is one of those sites that has so much material available that you need to set aside some time to look at it. You’ll be amply rewarded.
“Secret agents, bachelor pads, and mini skirts!” Spy Vibe (spyvibe.blogspot.com) has all that, and more. How can you resist? The recent long and lavishly illustrated post on “007 Tribute Covers” is just one of the many pleasures here. You’ll also find links to spy-related sites devoted to The Avengers, James Bond, The Prisoner, The Man From U.N.C.L.E., and many others. Set aside some time and enjoy the nostalgia you’ll find on this entertaining site.