SIMENON, Georges

(1903 - 1989)
“I write fast because I have not the brains to write slow”

The Belgian novelist Georges Joseph Christian Simenon was one of the most productive and popular writers of the twentieth century, who published nearly 500 novels and short stories. He began work as a reporter for the Gazette de Liège at the age of sixteen, where he specialized in writing human interest stories, which gave him the opportunity to explore the criminal courts, bars, and cheap hotels, and the denizens thereof, which later provided him with the background for many of his novels, including his best-remembered and most loved series featuring Commissaire Jules Maigret.  In 1931, after 10 years of writing pulp fiction, Peter the Latvian, (Pietr-le-Letton) the first of 75 novels and 28 short stories about the phlegmatic Maigret  was published, and although he tried to abandon his detective (much like Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes), and between 1935 and 1941 he wrote no Maigret stories, he finally yielded to popular demand (or financial imperative) and continued with the series until the final title, Maigret and Monsieur Charles, published in 1972.   The Maigret novels were translated into all major languages and several of them were turned into films and radio plays.

 P.D. James once wrote of him 'A writer who, more than any other crime novelist, combined a high literary reputation with popular appeal'. In 1966 he was awarded the Grand Master Award by the Mystery Writer’s of America, and, despite his problematic history, (with accusations of collaboration with the Vichey government and self-proclaimed promiscuity) he was honoured in 2003 with a silver commemorative coin, the Belgium 100 Years of Georges Simenon Coin, and nominated in 2005 for the title of The Greatest Belgian.

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 Georges SIMENON

Books by this author

The Patience of Maigret

SIMENON, Georges


Maigret and the Ghost

SIMENON, Georges