Why are women so attracted to crime fiction?

Category: News

Genevieve is currently working with the Crime and Thriller department for two weeks in order to gain work experience. Look out for another article from her on her experience in our department.

 

 

“Crime novels are about life, death, love, loss and broken minds”

Alex Barclay

 

I read a fascinating article in the Irish Examiner about female crime fiction writers and it got me thinking…why are women so attracted to this particular genre?

 

The presumption is that men, seen as naturally more aggressive, are more inclined to read novels of crime, violence, blood, guts and gore. But it seems as if the opposite is true.

 

The article, Murder, She Wrote by author and journalist Declan Burke, explores the opinions of four of the leading lights of the current wave of Irish crime writing – Alex Barclay, Arlene Hunt, Niamh O’Connor and Ava McCarthy. All women who prove that the female author is very often deadlier than the male.

 

One of the explanations given for this gravitation towards the more sinister side of fiction is due to what Barclay sees as “a compulsion to understand” a broken mind; a need to know how the darker side of humanity works. Perhaps the reason for this attraction is that crime fiction gives women an opportunity to explore the psychological motivations of a killer in the safe confines of the pages of a book.

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