THOMASTON — The Thomaston Public Library Mystery Book Club will meet, Thursday, Nov. 7, at 11 a.m., to discuss the DCI Vera Stanhope series by Ann Cleeves. The first book in the series is The Crow Trap, but book club members are welcome to pick any of the books in the series to read.
From the publisher:
"Detective Inspector Vera Stanhope may not be the first person you’d think of for a heroine: she’s overweight, a bit rough around the edges, and her staff knows when to stay out of her way. Vera’s crime-solving skills, however, are more than a match for the darkly fascinating cases that cross her path."
From Radio Times Magazine on the origins of Vera:
"Vera [was] born on the page in 1999 in Cleeves’s novel The Crow Trap. Her arrival, as she burst through a set of church doors to interrupt the funeral of a murder victim, came out of the blue for her creator: 'I was stuck on The Crow Trap. It was never going to have a detective in it; it was just going to be about three women working on an environmental survey right up in the hills of Northumberland. It was always going to be a crime novel, but in a Minette Walters, psychological suspense way. I’d written the first three parts and couldn’t think what i was going to do with the rest of it.'
"So Cleeves, a former probation officer and bird observatory cook, fell back on the cast-iron, hard-boiled advice of the great Raymond Chandler, who said: 'If you are stuck with a book, have a guy burst through a door with a gun.' Says Cleeves; 'I don’t do guns, of course, but I was writing this funeral scene and everything had started and the door burst open and there she was, like a bag lady instead of a detective... [She] was based on the middle-aged women I knew growing up, formidable spinsters who’d lost men in the war or who had never married but became independent. They always wore dreadful clothes and didn’t care much what they looked like.'
"'Wherever I go, people...say to me, “I love Vera,” and I think they mean...they love having this strong, competent, authoritative woman they can identify with who doesn’t mind putting people down and doesn’t need a man in her life to be independent and happy.'"
The Thomaston Public Library Mystery Book Club meets the first Thursday of every month at 11 a.m.
December's selection will be decided at November's meeting.
For more information, contact the library at (207) 354-2453.