Reginald Hill, A Clubbable Woman (1970)

As several of my bright and well-read readers guessed, my quotation was from the first, British Dalziel and Pascoe police procedural.

I am sure most translators of fiction do their best, and I am not one of those readers who think you always have to read the book in the original language to get the full pleasure of it. But many series which teem with your whisky-drinking working class coppers are a bland affair in Danish, as we do not have any tradition of rendering dialect or contractions in our written language.

So when I got this huge box of crime in English, I knew it was time to give Hill´s series a second chance – in the proper language.

And what can I say; watching the big man, crude and boorish Andrew Dalziel in horrid fascination was a real treat.

In this first case Mary Connon is killed, the wife of ´Connie´, the former rugby star, and the murder seems to be connected to the rugby club. As Dalziel is a member, he has plenty of opportunity to bully and harass the other members in his work hours as well as his spare time (if he ever has any). The soft and well-spoken university sidekick Peter Pascoe switches between condescention and awe, and is often forced to admit (at least to himself), that Dalziel´s methods work.

About Dorte Hummelshøj Jakobsen

I am a Danish teacher. In my spare time I read, write and review crime fiction.
This entry was posted in British, Reginald Hill, review, review 2011. Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to Reginald Hill, A Clubbable Woman (1970)

  1. Margot Kinberg says:

    Dorte – Oh, I am so glad you got the chance to read this in English, as I knew you were hoping you’d like the series better that way. I’m just as happy that you were right and did like it :-). I think it’s a terrific series, and I really enjoy the interplay between the two “lead” characters. I also like the way they evolve separately and as a team as the series goes on.

  2. Kelly says:

    Well, I’m feeling a little better now for not knowing this earlier. It’s not a series I’ve heard of before.

  3. Bill Selnes says:

    Dorte: I have not read any of the series. Will you be reading more D & P?

  4. I should have recognised the quotation as I used it myself when I wrote about the book – but then that was over three years ago, so I don’t feel too bad 🙂

    I thought it was excellent. And I’d love to read the whole series in order, but I’m just reading them as I find them – very much out of order. Dalziel and Pascoe are a great team!

  5. This is a really enjoyable book. Even in his early days, Reg Hill was a great story-teller.

  6. Petty Witter says:

    I so admire you reading this in another language, to be totally honest I’m put off reading the books as I didn’t enjoy the tv series.

  7. Dorte H says:

    Margot: as so many of my discerning friends liked them, I knew I had to give them a third chance.
    Kelly: I tried to hint that the author was British – and many Europeans also know them frm TV.
    Bill: Definitely! And not only because I have eleven more on my shelf 😉
    Margaret: there may be readers who have such a memory – but there may also be those who google a bit 😉
    Martin: I agree, it was a very convincing debut.
    Tracy: the book was better than the TV series (on the whole I prefer the books).

  8. kathy d. says:

    I have not read this series, but I saw a quartet of TV episodes with Dalziel and Pascoe. Liked it a lot, and plan on finding more dvds, if I can remember which ones I saw.

  9. Petty Witter says:

    Its generally the case that the book(s) are better than any tv/film adaptations, perhaps I’ll rethink reading them.

  10. I’m so glad you liked it. As someone who has to read a lot in other languages, I agree, it’s sometimes best to read in the original language.

  11. Patti Abbott says:

    On Beulah Heights is my favorite. But they are all good. Very good.

  12. Sarah says:

    Daziel is one of my favourite characters. It’s been years since I read a A Clubbable Woman. I’m glad it stands the test of time.

  13. Beth F says:

    I’m glad I’m not the only who hasn’t read this series yet. One of these days — so many people love the D&P team.

  14. Dorte H says:

    Thank you for your comments, and I am quite pleased I have so many future treats to look forward to.

  15. Care says:

    The title is awful! Don’t you think? or am I thinking too violent and it is more that the woman gets invited to social clubs?

  16. Dorte H says:

    Care: I am sure no one would come up with such a title today, but it probably meant to suggest she got around a bit in her youth 😉

  17. Nan says:

    I’m very fond of these two, and of Ellie whom you will meet soon. I’ve written about the first four in the series on my blog. (if you are interested, you could click on the ‘authors’ tab under the blog header) I skipped the fifth since I really didn’t like the subject matter, but have the sixth waiting for me.

  18. Dorte H says:

    Nan: I am sure I am going to like the series very much in English – but the language does not translate too well.

  19. Pingback: Review: A Clubbable Woman, by Reginald Hill | The Game's Afoot

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