Sunday, February 24, 2008

Stephen Marlowe, R. I. P.

One of the greats, mentioned often on this blog. Here, for example, and here. So his passing is very sad news to me. One of my favorite Bouchercon moments was signing next to Marlowe at the Monterey Bouchercon. I've put up a new slideshow in tribute.

Writer Stephen Marlowe dies - :: "WILLIAMSBURG, Va.—Novelist Stephen Marlowe, best known for a series of books featuring private detective Chester Drum, died Friday at a hospital after a long illness, his family said in a statement. He was 79.

Marlowe began his career as a writer of pulp and science fiction and wrote more than 50 novels. His series featuring Chester Drum began with 'The Second Longest Night' in 1955 and concluded with 'Drumbeat Marianne' in 1968. His more recent work included fictionalized biographies, including 'The Memoirs of Christopher Columbus' in 1987, 'The Lighthouse at the End of the World' in 1995 and 'The Death and Life of Miguel de Cervantes' in 1996.

Marlowe was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., and graduated from the College of William and Mary in 1949 with a degree in philosophy before serving two years in the Army. He spent decades of his working life overseas, mostly in France and Spain, and founded a writer-in-residence program at his alma mater in 1974.

Marlowe received France's Prix Gutenberg du Livre in 1988 and the Life Achievement Award of the Private Eye Writers of America in 1997.

He is survived by his wife, Ann, and two daughters."


Randy Johnson said...

The only book of his I've read was the crossover with Richard Prather, Double In Trouble.

Bill Crider said...

I read a ton of his stories in the old SF digests when I was a kid, many written as "Milton Lesser." I've read a lot of his books done under various names.

Todd Mason said...

A very bad week this way, indeed. I just learned of film director Kon Ichikawa's death, today, as well (and brilliant musician/producer Teo Macero's earlier, and on a solely personal level my brother lost his charming and intelligent cat Malaprop on Thursday). Lesser/Marlowe (I believe Lesser was his birth name) comes across a very much a gentleman in his late interviews, having had nothing left to prove in terms of talent and dedication.

August West said...

Though I never cared much for the Chester Drum novels, I remember that "Blonde Bait" published by Zenith blew-me-away. I'll never forget reading it...