Thursday, September 30, 2021

Charlotte Armstrong

Welcome to the Charlotte Armstrong Blog, an adjunct to the website. The purpose of the blog is to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas about the life and work of this well-known and successful mystery/suspense writer of the era of the 40s, 50s, and 60s.

Chief bloggers of this effort are Armstrong’s sons, Jerry and Peter Lewi, with support of their sister, Jacquelin Bynagte. These children lived through and were witnesses of the development, as well as the ups and downs of their mother’s incredible career.

Why do we want to do this? First of all, reprints and e-books of many of her books are being republished and there appears to be a significant number of readers out there interested in good old-fashioned stories that are in contrast to the more current books that depend so much on gratuitous sex  and violence.

Secondly, as we re-read the stories that we often do, we are struck even to a greater extent than when our mother was living with the fine craftsmanship, the attention to detail, the development of character of her stories. And perhaps even more significant, we  keep finding more stories that seem to have captured morals and themes way ahead of their time. We already knew that Lemon in the Basket featured a middle-eastern potentate being treated for a serious illness while American scholars were being held hostage to be sure of his safe treatment and return to him home country – a story written in 1968. And we knew of the tragic school child fatal shooting with a handgun in Ride with the Executioner, penned in 1955.

Now we realize that Girl with a Secret  makes reference to Mexican narcotic trafficking long before any of us knew about Mexican drug cartels. Story written in 1959.

So, our idea is to from time publish reviews of her full-length books and short stories with comments about how the story might have had its origins from our knowledge of her life.

We cannot close this post without acknowledging The Virtue of Suspense, by Rick Cypert that is the most definitive published biography of Armstrong’s work. All of Charlotte Armstrong’s books and books about her can be accessed elsewhere on this website.

Thus, we hope we will reach of all this writer’s fans as well those who may have known her work in some professional capacity. We promise to respond to all comments as promptly as possible.