Rae Foley

Rae Foley’s Hiram Potter and Chase’s Miss Blandish.


American author Rae Foley’s (Elinore Denniston, 1900-1978) postwar series featuring the detective Hiram Potter was often described as an American counterpart to L. Sayers’s Lord Peter Wimsey. In a period when European authors were writing books imitating the American hardboiled genre, Rae Foley was writing, in America, books imitating British Golden Age mysteries. She can thus be seen as a symmetrical counterpart to Peter Cheyney, or James Hadley Chase. Together, Foley, Chase, and Cheyney show both sides of the postwar transatlantic exchange which helped to shape crime fiction. Foley’s success recalls that the exchanges worked both ways. Even at the heights of the noir era, British style mystery books continued to be in demand. And the circulation of Foley’s books in continental Europe blurred boundaries further, highlighting their openness to multiple cultural appropriations. Continue reading