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Otto Penzler Books In Order

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Publication Order of Vampire Archives Books

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Detectionary (1971)Description / Buy at Amazon
Encyclopedia of Mystery and Detection (With: Chris Steinbrunner) (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
Hang Gliding (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
Hunting the Killer Shark (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
Daredevils on Wheels (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
This Prize is Dangerous (1985)Description / Buy at Amazon
101 Greatest Films of Mystery and Suspense (2000)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Anthologies

Whodunit? Houdini?(1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Private Lives of Private Eyes, Spies, Crimefighters & Other Good Guys(1977)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Great Detectives(1978)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Crown Crime Companion(1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder For Love(1996)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 1997(1997)Description / Buy at Amazon
The 50 Greatest Mysteries of All Time(1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder for Revenge(1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Greatest Mysteries of All Time(1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Case of the Scottish Tragedy(1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 1998(1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder and Obsession(1999)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 1999(1999)Description / Buy at Amazon
Criminal Records(2000)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories of the Century(2000)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2000(2000)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murderers' Row(2001)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2001(2001)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Mysterious Press Anniversary Anthology: Celebrating 25 Years(2001)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder on the Ropes(2001)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder Is My Racquet(2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Mighty Johns and Other Stories(2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sudden Death(2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2002(2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 3(2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
One Clue Beyond(2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
Best American Crime Writing(2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Year's Best True Crime Reporting: Best American Crime Writing(2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder at the Foul Line(2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories(2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2003(2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2004(2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dangerous Women(2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Crime Writing 2005(2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2005(2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
Uncertain Endings(2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder at the Racetrack(2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder in the Rough(2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2006(2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Pulp Fiction: The Crimefighters(2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Pulp Fiction - The Villains(2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dead Man's Hand(2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Crime Reporting 2007(2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2007(2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Black Lizard Big Book of Pulps(2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Vicious Circle(2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
Best American Mystery Stories 2007(2008)Description / Buy at Amazon
Pulp Fiction - The Dames(2008)Description / Buy at Amazon
Hardcore Hardboiled(2008)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2008(2008)Description / Buy at Amazon
Bloodsuckers(2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Vampire Archives(2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Lineup(2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
Fangs(2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
Black Noir(2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Crime Reporting 2009(2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2009(2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
Agents of Treachery(2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Black Lizard Big Book of Black Mask Stories(2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2010(2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Noir of the Century(2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
Christmas at The Mysterious Bookshop(2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
Coffins(2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Greatest Russian Stories of Crime and Suspense(2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2011(2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Adventure Stories(2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
Zombies! Zombies! Zombies!(2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
Zombies: A Compendium(2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Ghost Stories(2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
Mark Twain's Medieval Romance(2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
In Pursuit of Spenser(2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2012(2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
Jack the Ripper(2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2013(2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best of the Best American Mystery Stories(2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
Kwik Krimes(2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Christmas Mysteries(2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories of the Nineteenth Century(2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2014(2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Black Lizard Big Book of Locked-Room Mysteries(2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sherlock(2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2015(2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Sherlock Holmes Stories(2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2016(2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Jack the Ripper(2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
Silent Night, Deadly Night(2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Realm of the Impossible(2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2017(2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Rogues and Villains(2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
Bibliomysteries(2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
Classic American Crime Fiction of the 1920s(2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Female Detectives(2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
Death Sentences(2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2019(2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Reel Murders(2019)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Misadventures of Nero Wolfe(2020)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Best American Mystery Stories 2020(2020)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Espionage(2020)Description / Buy at Amazon
Golden Age Detective Stories(2021)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Big Book of Victorian Mysteries(2021)Description / Buy at Amazon
Golden Age Locked Room Mysteries(2022)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Mysterious Bookshop Presents the Best Mystery Stories of the Year 2023(2023)Description / Buy at Amazon
Golden Age Whodunits(2024)Description / Buy at Amazon

Otto Penzler is a historical romance, thriller, horror, and mystery author and also the proprietor of New York’s “The Mysterious Bookshop.” The author is deemed the foremost authority on suspense, mystery, and crime fiction. Penzler was born in Hamburg Germany in 1942 to Otto Penzler a chemist and his wife Jeanette a secretary. He was always fascinated with mystery and detective novels and he has turned this passion into a multi-faceted and lucrative career over the years. Frederick Allen of New York Magazine called him a one-man, self-made locked room industry whose work in mystery has made him a colossus in the genre. Otto is the founder of two publishing houses that emphasized mystery and suspense works. His “The Mysterious Bookshop” in the Big Apple is deemed one of the most respected and oldest mystery bookstores in the United States. Apart from his bookstore business and writing, he is also a prolific editor and has been responsible for several anthologies over the years. He had won two Edgar Awards for “The Lineup” in 2010 and the “Encyclopedia of Mystery and Detection.” He is also the winner of the 1994 Ellery Queen Award from the Mystery Writers of America.

As a child growing up in the Bronx, he was an avid reader of nonfiction, science fiction, and literary fiction. In 1959, he was admitted to the University of Michigan where he studied English even though he spent much of his time reporting for “The Michigan Daily.” He was a good athlete and enjoyed his college life especially reporting for the Wolverines. After graduating from college in 1963, he went back to the Bronx and soon after got a job as a copyboy for the “New York Daily News” where he earned $42 a week. He would eventually work his way up and become the go-to sportswriter charged with reporting for professional and collegiate sports in New York. He picked up his first copy of “The Complete Sherlock Holmes” in 1963 and was immediately taken by mysteries. He would then read the classics by the likes of Dashiell Hammett, Agatha Christie, Raymond Chandler, Ellery Queen, and John Dickson Carr. By 1969, he was working for ABC Sports as publicity director but in 1976 he left to go start his own publishing house “The Mysterious Press.” The house published limited edition works by famous British and American authors but soon after also got into publishing original works. Some of the authors that published with the house include Eric Ambler, Ross Thomas, James Ellroy, Donald E Westlake, and Ruth Rendell. After selling The Mysterious Press to Time Warner, he founded Otto Penzler Books where he would publish the very successful “Armchair Detective Library,” “Sherlock Holmes Library of Sherlockiana,” “Otto Penzler’s First Edition Library,” and the “Classic American Mystery Library.”

Apart from being an editor and bookstore owner, Otto Penzler has also written and edited several detective and mystery fiction works. He won the Mystery Writers of America Edgar Allan Poe Award for “Encyclopedia of Mystery and Detection.” During the 1980s, he was Pocket Books’ general editor for their “$Whodunit?$” series. It was a very popular series that provided a reward of $15,000 to anyone that resolved the mysteries in a novel. They were inspired by the Ellery Queen mysteries where the writer would ask the reader to provide a solution to the mystery midway through the story. He is also editor of the Houghton Mifflin published “The Best American Mystery Stories” anthology. He usually works with other crime authors in the compilation of his annual anthologies. Some of the authors that have been included in his annual volumes include Joyce Carol Oates, Sue Grafton, Nelson DeMille, Ed McBain, Michael Connelly, Donald Westlake, James Ellroy, and Lawrence Block. Most of the editions come with a mix of authors from the well-known to the unknown each with an author profile. They usually have about fifty tales and it is usually left to the guest editor to decide which stories will make the final edition.

“Bloodsuckers” by Otto Penzler is a deliciously wicked anthology with high-quality stories that are a testament to the prestige and discerning taste of the genre from the editor. Taking stories that have been anthologized several times, he makes a delightful collection and adds in previously undiscovered treasures to make for a thrilling work. The thing that makes about half the stories work so well is the inclusion of a femme fatale of some kind. Nothing beats the deadly and heady glamor of a predatory villain looking to quench its unholy appetites using its intimidating wiles. The “Death of Ilalotha” is a noxious, opulent, and fervid dream in which a black widow queen struggles for the love and attention of a boy toy she believes belongs to her. She goes against the fatal seductions of a rival that is a recently dead sorceress. The “Story Was as Wet as Wet Can Be” is a gory, dark, and contemporary take on “The Walrus and the Carpenter,” narrative poem by Lewis Carroll. The story “The Silver Collar” is an intense and thrilling vampire story though it very much a conventional work with its melancholic and haunting narrator voice. It proceeds to its inevitable conclusion which is a very unconventional approach. Carrion Comfort is the story of two psychopathic and aging southern beauties that thrive on manipulating other people who now turn on each other and engage in a do or die battle to the death.

Otto Penzler’s “Fangs” is a great follow up to the first novel of “The Vampire Archives” series. The book comes with twenty of the best short fiction in vampires ever written. It is still a great quality anthology and most of the stories provide a great thrill. A few stretch the theme of vampires but none are ridiculous with some providing refreshing variations of the theme. Aylmer Vance and the Vampire is a story of the curse that is passed on from one generation to the next and in the story, it has a young husband battling with the evil in his blood. “The Stone Chamber” is a thrilling story that resurrects the crimes of an extinct dynasty and the new lord of the family that had taken over has to deal with a new threat. “Human Remains” is a vampire tale that was part of the seminal “Books of Blood” by Barker. It tells the story of a handsome hustler that was stalked by a doppelganger that wanted to assume his identity warts, life, and all. In “Princess of Darkness,” the story is that of a British gentleman who stoically rebuffs the advances of an aristocratic seductress. Tired of her schemes, he decides to go head to head with her by working with an occult practitioner from Eastern Europe.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Otto Penzler

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