“Stop You’re Killing Me.” I use it often and was reminded of it when I read a story on the re-issue of Georges Simenon’s Maigret mysteries. I don’t remember how I first found out about SYKM, but I remember why I first needed it.
My husband I were making a concerted effort to get all of the Maigret novels and were having difficulty because volumes have been published under many different titles. For instance, The Strange Case of Peter the Lett has also been published as The Case of Peter the Lett and Maigret and the Enigmatic Lett. This is not so tricky since I can’t imagine that Simenon would write 3 different novels about Letts.
Consider, however, The Saint-Fiacre Affaire which has also been published as Maigret Goes Home, Maigret and the Countess and Maigret on Home Ground. Pretty tricky,eh? It’s no fun having fifty Maigret novels if forty of them are duplicates.
SYKM has made me look pretty savvy on a number of occasions. Even though I tell friends that I use SYKM and send them the link, they insist on thinking that I alone know the answers to all their mystery questions. One of my friends actually yelled at me, “Every time I ask you a question about mysteries, you send me this website. I don’t want the website I want you.” I try to remind people that while Moby Dick is ubiquitous and eternal I am not, so I continue to offer the website.
I’ve answered questions about what order novels in series have been written, let people know when is so-and-so’s next book coming out and come up with a selection of novels for people based on where they were vacationing. Yes, you can look up authors based on where the crime takes place. The list is not complete. I looked high and low for Annamaria Alfieri in South America and found her not. You can look up sleuths based on when they are plying their trade (the first entry under 1940s is Lauren Atwill) and on what trade they ply (Mother Vinny is there under clergy).
And given that the site classifies the mysteries in so many different ways, if all you can remember is that the series was about some female sleuth in 1940s London, you can find your book.
If you’re so inclined you can subscribe to their updates that include book give-aways and lists of award nominees (SYKM itself has won more than one Anthony). I can’t begin to imagine how much work it must be to keep this site current.
Keep up the good work, Stop You’re Killing Me.
© 2014 Stephanie Patterson