Christopher G. Moore

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For other people of the same name, see Christopher Moore (disambiguation).
Christopher G. Moore
Christopher G. Moore 2006.jpg
Born (1952-07-08) July 8, 1952 (age 62)
Canada
Occupation Novelist
Nationality Canadian
Genre Crime fiction
Website
www.cgmoore.com

Christopher G. Moore (born 8 July 1952[1]) is a Canadian writer of twenty-five novels, five works of non-fiction,editor of three anthologies, and author of four radio dramas. He is best known for his trilogy A Killing Smile (1991), A Bewitching Smile (1992) and A Haunting Smile (1993), a behind-the-smiles study of his adopted country, Thailand, and for his Vincent Calvino Private Eye series set in Bangkok.[2] His novels have been translated into German, French, Italian, Portuguese, Hebrew, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, Turkish, Norwegian, Polish, Russian and Thai.

Background[edit]

While a law professor at the University of British Columbia, he had the chance to visit Japan in 1983 and from Tokyo at the invitation of a friend continued on to visit Thailand for the first time.[3] His first book His Lordship’s Arsenal was published in New York in 1985.

His Lordship's Arsenal[edit]

"The whole story in His Lordship’s Arsenal spins around Wild Bill Anglin, a mysterious character who ends up in flames in a Canadian brothel. The sole owner of the only prototype of a submachine gun, Wild Bill gives it to Potter, an emissary sent by none other than Colonel Thompson, the founder of Auto-Ordnance Corporation... In order to get over the impasse he felt over the Delrose Hotel case, his next-door neighbour, a rich and dodgy psychiatrist, prompts Burlock to write an autobiographical sketch of his own life. And thus, the reader learns about the judge’s childhood and adolescence under the supervision of Potter, about his time at Oxford and his friendship and affair with his future stepmother, and, most of all, his fascination with guns and his qualities as an excellent marksman."[4]

Vincent Calvino[edit]

Vincent Calvino is a fictional Bangkok-based private eye created by Christopher G. Moore in the Vincent Calvino Private Eye series. Vincent Calvino first appeared in 1992 in Spirit House, the first novel in the series. His latest appearance is in Paying Back Jack, the tenth novel in the series published in 2009. Moore’s protagonist, Vincent Calvino, half Jewish and half Italian, is an ex-lawyer from New York, who, under ambiguous circumstances, gave up law practice and became a private eye in Bangkok. “Hewn from the hard-boiled Dashiell Hammett/Raymond Chandler model, Calvino is a tough, somewhat tarnished hero with a heart of gold.”—Mark Schreiber, The Japan Times.[5] Calvino has been said to epitomize "the complex, thus constantly troubled, private investigator of classic crime fiction, albeit replanted into the exotic, even surreal setting that is Thailand . . ."

Work[edit]

Novels[edit]

Non-fiction[edit]

Anthology[edit]

Radio drama[edit]

  • View from Cambie Bridge (N.H.K. Japan) (1983)
  • The Bamboo Pillar (C.B.C.) (1983)
  • The Semi-Detached Barrister (C.B.C.) (1981)
  • Sticks and Pucks (C.B.C.) (1980)

Critical Acclaim[edit]

“Moore's flashy style successfully captures the dizzying contradictions in [Bangkok’s] vertiginous landscape.”—Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review.[6]

“Think Dashiell Hammett in Bangkok. A hard-boiled, street-smart, often hilarious pursuit of a double murderer.”—The San Francisco Chronicle.[7]

“In his novels, Moore writes about Bangkok as if it were one of the most famous cities of noir fiction. The nightlife there comes off as mysterious, dangerous, and exciting and the people in power are cast as no less corrupt than their counterparts might be in America. He makes Bangkok breathe and work as part of his cast. It’s akin to what George Pelecanos does with Washington, D.C., and what Don Winslow does with San Diego. Moore is a stylist much like the writers of the early to mid-20th century who kick-started the P.I. genre in America. He writes with the angry and sad voice of Ross Macdonald and the flow of and beauty of Raymond Chandler. Penning his books in the third-person, he uses allegory and symbolism to great effect. The Calvino series is distinctive and wonderful, not to be missed, and I’m pleased to see that it is finally becoming better known in the States”.

“Moore’s noir thrillers and literary fiction—like Graham Greene, he alternates between ‘entertainment’ and serious novels—are subtle and compelling evocations of a part of the world rarely seen through our eyes.”—Macleans.[8]

“One of Moore’s greatest strengths . . . is his knowledge of Southeast Asian history.”—Newsweek, Joe Cochrane (Nov 10, 2003).[9]

“Moore might be described as W. Somerset Maugham with a bit of Elmore Leonard and Mickey Spillane thrown in for good measure.”—The Japan Times.[10]

“Moore’s work recalls the international ‘entertainments’ of Graham Greene or John le Carré, but the hard-bitten worldview and the cynical, bruised idealism of his battered hero is right out of Chandler. Intelligent and articulate, Moore offers a rich, passionate and original take on the private eye game, fans of the genre should definitely investigate, and fans of foreign intrigue will definitely appreciate.”—Kevin Burton Smith, January Magazine[11]

Awards[edit]

The German edition of Cut Out, titled Zero Hour in Phnom Penh, the third Calvino novel, won the German Critics Award for international crime fiction in 2004 and Premier Special Director Book Award Semana Negra, Spain in 2007. Asia Hand, the second Calvino novel, won the Shamus Award sponsored by the Private Eyes of America in 2011 in the Best Paperback Original category.
Reunion, a novella, Finalist Arthur Ellis Award 2013, Best Novella.

References[edit]

  1. ^ born 1946 according to the Library of Congress (www.loc.gov) authorities database. Other sources, such as Fantastic Fiction list him as 1952
  2. ^ 5 questions to...Christopher Moore, Sawasdee: Thai Airlines in flight magazine, 2009-04-21, retrieved 2009-06-24 
  3. ^ Hard-boiled and stuck to Thai ways, The Japan Times, 2004-07-18 
  4. ^ His Lordship's Arsenal
  5. ^ Hard-hitting Bangkok PI knows how to Thai one on, The Japan Times, retrieved 2003-03-16 
  6. ^ "New York Times Book Review". The New York Times. 2008-01-27. Retrieved 2009-06-29. 
  7. ^ "The San Francisco Chronicle". 2009-02-01. Retrieved 2009-06-29. 
  8. ^ "Macleans". Retrieved 2009-06-29. 
  9. ^ "Newsweek". Retrieved 2009-06-29. 
  10. ^ "The Japan Times". Retrieved 2009-06-29. 
  11. ^ "The January Magazine". Retrieved 2009-06-29. 

External links[edit]