The image of detective literature or noire literature has kept developing in the last few years. It is now a definitely modern genre chosen by a lot of people, including literature amateurs and movie-goers.
A contemporary genre
Classified in the past as minor, crime fiction has become one of the favourite genres in France. Nowadays one book out of 5 published in France is a crime fiction novel, that is more than 1200 titles published, 80 specialised series and 20 million copies sold each year. An increasing and unprecedented enthusiasm which has now an impact on cinema television or drama.
A favourite literary genre
James Ellroy, Dennis Lehane, David Peace, Michael Connelly… are often referred to as the greatest contemporary authors, not to mention the novels of Dan Brown, Jean-Christophe Grangé, Harlan Coben or Patricia Cornwell… which regularly appear at the top of the best-seller lists – all genres taken together.
An international genre
Far from the clichés of the private detective in his/her raincoat, the roman noir tackles present social issues and gives a thorough insight into the world of authors from different nationalities (The United-States, Europe, Latin America, Scandinavia, Russia, Asia…)
A large audience
Crime fiction does not only attract the usual novel reader, it also arouses the occasional reader’s interest. Its readership is feminine as well as masculine, with no distinction of age, each reader having his or her own favourite ‘sub-genres’ whether it be thriller, historical, spy or mystery fiction…