Author: Evan Johnston

Evan Johnston

Patricia Highsmith’s Subversion of Crime Fiction in The Talented Mr. Ripley

Crime fiction is typically the discovery of a murder, a set clues that explain how it happened, why it happened, and who is responsible. There are three stories in this formula: there is the story of a crime, the story of solving it, and the reader’s own story of trying to solve the crime. It’s fun maybe the first ten or twenty times you read it.

But what I love about Patricia Highsmith’s The Talented Mr. Ripley is how artfully the formula is subverted. A brief synopsis:  young Tom Ripley has been sent to convince Richard Greenleaf to return to his wealthy family—who have no idea that they have just bankrolled the man who will murder and impersonate their son.Read More