Astrid’s next book will be out in January, and her next manuscript is at the publisher – a Styrian noir. The protagonist: grumpy Inspector Semper in the violent crime unit of the state police.

Astrid’s literary shift gave me reason to reflect on Austria’s crime novel boom. If you were to analyze Austria based on our popular fiction, you would conclude that we’re among Earth’s most violent inhabitants.

In reality Austria ranks fourth on the Global Peace Index, and has one of the world’s lowest murder rates. So why do we kill each other in our novels? One theory is that crime fiction only develops in idyllic societies. South African author, Andrew Brown, notes that the genre only began to flourish in his country when political stability returned. The same is also true of Northern Ireland.

Do peace and prosperity go hand in hand with murder and mayhem? Leave a comment.

Photo by kat wilcox from Pexels.

2 thoughts on “Murder & Mayhem

  1. Lots of good crime fiction out of Scandinavia, too, like Sweden’s Stieg Larsson. But we’d need counter-examples, too. (Societies with lots of crime but few crime novels?)

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