A sense of place is important to the construction, believability and success of regional mystery novels. Authentic representation of place is challenging if an author is not originally from the area being portrayed. Despite this, some authors are able to depict foreign places more comprehensively and realistically than others. Professor Gary Hausladen of the University of Nevada, Reno identifies: narrative description, dialogue, iconography, and attention to detail as the basic literary devices that convey sense of place. This thesis questions the manner in which successful mystery novelists writing about foreign places meet Hausladen's model. Specifically, do they use all four of the literary devices, which are most commonly used, which are consciously used, and what research methods and resources do they use to incorporate the literary devices. Primary and secondary data are collected through interviews and literary analyses. It is found that these authors use all four of the prescribed literary devices, that some of the literary devices are more challenging to use than others, that place establishing literary techniques are important to the authors and that the authors seek to incorporate sense of place through diverse types of intensive research.
College and Department
Family, Home, and Social Sciences; Geography
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Engar, Amy Kimball, "Mystery writers in foreign settings: The literary devices and methods used to portray foreign geographies" (2005). All Theses and Dissertations. 259.
geography, literature, sense of place, literary device, foreign, mystery novels, Lindsey Davis, Elizabeth George, Dorothy Gilman, Lynda Robinson