Friday, April 24, 2020

Eight toxic friendships in crime fiction

Lisa Levy is a columnist and contributing editor at LitHub and CrimeReads. She is the former EIC of crime fiction site The Life Sentence and the former Mystery/Noir editor at the LA Review of Books.

At CrimeReads Levy tagged eight of the most toxic friendships in crime fiction, including:
Patricia Highsmith, The Talented Mr. Ripley

Women are not the only ones who can have toxic friendships. Exhibit A, and essential to the founding of the trope is Tom Ripley. Ripley, desperate to move among the very rich, gets himself hired to find the son of a rich guy: a young man named Dickie Greenleaf who has disappeared in Italy. Tom finds him irresistible, but Dickie is obsessed with Marge, an American dilettante. The constant shifting of alliances and affection runs through Highsmith’s five Ripley novels, one of the few books in which she alluded to homosexual feelings (Highsmith was a lesbian).
Read about the other entries on the list.

The Talented Mr Ripley is on Elizabeth Macneal's list of five sympathetic fictional psychopaths, Laurence Scott's list of seven top books about doppelgangers, J.S. Monroe's list of seven suspenseful literary thrillers, Simon Lelic's top ten list of false identities in fiction, Jeff Somers's list of fifty novels that changed novels, Olivia Sudjic's list of eight favorite books about love and obsession, Roz Chast's six favorite books list, Nicholas Searle's top five list of favorite deceivers in fiction, Chris Ewan's list of the ten top chases in literature, Meave Gallagher's top twenty list of gripping page-turners every twentysomething woman should read, Sophia Bennett's top ten list of books set in the Mediterranean, Emma Straub's top ten list of holidays in fiction, E. Lockhart's list of favorite suspense novels, Sally O'Reilly's top ten list of novels inspired by Shakespeare, Walter Kirn's top six list of books on deception, Stephen May's top ten list of impostors in fiction, Simon Mason's top ten list of chilling fictional crimes, Melissa Albert's list of eight books to change a villain, Koren Zailckas's list of eleven of literature's more evil characters, Alex Berenson's five best list of books about Americans abroad John Mullan's list of ten of the best examples of rowing in literature, Tana French's top ten maverick mysteries list, the Guardian's list of the 50 best summer reads ever, the Telegraph's ultimate reading list, and Francesca Simon's top ten list of antiheroes.

--Marshal Zeringue