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Penzler knows that anthologies are like a party: You meet people you already know and people who are completely knew to you.
As mystery expert Penzler admits in his introduction, this volume contains "little classic detection... and less nail-biting suspense" than the usual crime fiction anthology, but those curious about the legendary figures of the Algonquin Round Table-a group of New York City writers and critics from the 1920s, many affiliated with the New Yorker-will get at least a taste of the wit and sophistication for which they were known. Of the dozen selections, the highlights are three parodic pieces by S.J. Perelman, notably the laugh-out-loud "Farewell, My Lovely Appetizer," Kaiser Lupowitz stories. Another stand-out is the wickedly absurd "The Mystery of the Poisoned Kipper" by Robert Benchley, perhaps best known today as the grandfather of the author of Jaws. While some tales disappoint, readers new to these authors may be inspired to sample more of their work.
An anthology of crime and mystery tales by members of the New York sophisticate literary group includes pieces by such writers as humorist Robert Benchley, playwright George S. Kaufman, and novelist Dorothy Parker. Reprint.
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