Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Munchies and Mysteries

My favorite detectives have always been foodies. Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe, in spite of the fact that I forgot how much he weighs, has to be my first favorite. Although some of the food described or merely mentioned as being part of his diet--if diet is the word I want--make Little Miss Picky go "ewwwwww!", I would deeply resent a Wolfe novel or story without any meals. Or at least beer. Wolfe is a beer drinker, and very particular about it. I like Killian's Red, myself.

My second favorite is Walter R. Brooks' Freddy the pig. Freddy and his barnyard pals at Farmer Bean's place can talk, as can all animals, if people just act sensible enough for the animals to think they'd be worth talking to. Freddy and his pal, Jinx the black cat, solve mysteries for animals and humans. It isn't surprising that Freddy's mind often runs to food, even to the point of his writing poetry about it on occasion.

Michael Z. Lewin's Albert Samson sometimes lives over his mother's diner, Bud's Dugout, and Albert sometimes cooks for himself and sometimes goes downstairs for some of the finest short-order food around. In Albert's latest book, EYE OPENER, he goes on a series of restaurant dates--or attempted dates--with a new acquaintance. The food always seems to be good, although he doesn't always get to eat any of it. The same author's Leroy Powder series has more coffee than food, but Lewin's Lunghi family series, about a family-run detective agency in Bath, England, features regular Italian/English family meals that make me want to hop a jet and invite myself over.

Okay, I'm making myself hungry. My mother gave me some chicken cacciatore last night. I don't care what time it is--I want some!

8 comments:

Gayle said...

I'd never heard of Freddy the pig. Those books sound so cute!

Marian Allen said...

They're a hoot! I still collect them. Freddy is always trying out disguises so he can work undercover. In one book, he dresses up in a child's sailor suit to pretend to be somebody's nephew, and asks his pal Jinx how he looks. "Like a pig in a sailor suit," Jinx says.

Jacob the wasp is one of my favorite characters. Another is Mrs. Wiggins, a partner in the detective agency. Oh, yeah...Mrs. Wiggins is a cow.

Gayle said...

Totally cool. I'm going to have to look those up.

zhadi said...

Any of time of day is the time of day for chicken cacciatore!

I've never sen the Freddy the Pig books either. ARe they adult or kids books? I confess to reading both quite happily...

Marian Allen said...

They're supposed to be children's books, but I still get a kick out of them. I think you have to have a particular kind of kink in your brain, because some kids and adults just don't see the appeal. Luckily, my youngest daughter loves them as much as I do (she just turned 25). Freddy has his own web site: http://freddythepig.org. Someday, when I sell a book for a million dollars, I'm going to go to the Freddy convention. heeee!

Another "kid's" detective series that will make your brains bubble out through your ears is the Hank the Cowdog adventures, especially the audio versions read by author John Erickson doing voices for all the characters. http://www.hankthecowdog.com/ If you can fast forward through the songs, so much the better....

Gayle said...

Have you ever read any of the Junie B. Jones books? They're kids books, and I LOVE them. They're hilarious!

Marian Allen said...

Yes, I've read a couple of the Junie B. books, and they sometimes take my breath away, I'm laughing so hard. I also love the same author's (Barbara Park) Skinnybones books, especially Almost Starring Skinnybones.

zhadi said...

I'll have to check these out! If you've never read IT ALL STARTED WITH JANE EYRE (I can't remember the author), I recommend it highly!