John Harvey is a prolific British crime fiction author, screenwriter, and poet. He has published over 100 books under various names and has worked on scripts for TV and radio. Harvey is most famous for his series of jazz-influenced Charlie Resnick novels, which he started writing in 1989.
John Harvey was born in London. After receiving his education at St. Aloysius' College in north London, he pursued higher studies at Goldsmiths' College, University of London, and Hatfield Polytechnic (now the University of Hertfordshire).
Harvey earned a Master's Degree in American Studies from the University of Nottingham, where he briefly taught Film and American Literature.
For 12 years, he taught English and Drama in secondary schools, then in 1975, became a full-time writer. After several years of writing paperback fiction for adults and teenagers, he is now principally known as an author of crime fiction.
The first of his Charlie Resnick series, Lonely Hearts, was named by The Times as one of the 100 most notable crime novels of the last century.
In addition to twelve Resnick novels, there are four books featuring retired police detective Frank Elder, the first of which, Flesh and Blood, was awarded both the British Crime Writers’ Association Silver Dagger and the US Barry Award in 2004.
His works have been translated into more than 20 different languages. Harvey has received significant recognition in France, including the Grand Prix du Roman Noir Etranger for Cold Light in 2000 and the Prix du Polar Europeen for Ash & Bone in 2007.
John Harvey received the CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger for Sustained Excellence in Crime Writing. He also won the CWA Short Story Dagger in 2014 for his story Fedora.
John Harvey's career also includes ventures into television and radio. He adapted Arnold Bennett's novels for the BBC and created the Central Television series Hard Cases about the Nottingham Probation Service. Additionally, dramatizations of his Resnick novels were shown on the BBC, with Tom Wilkinson portraying Charlie Resnick.
Outside of his crime fiction work, Harvey has been involved in poetry. He edited Slow Dancer magazine and ran Slow Dancer Press, where he published poetry and short fiction by various authors. John has also published his poetry in collections like Ghosts of a Chance and Bluer Than This. In 2019, he released Aslant, a book that combines his poetry with photographs by his daughter, Molly Ernestine Boiling.
He has been awarded Honorary Doctorates by the Universities of Nottingham and Hertfordshire and, in 2020, was made an Honorary Fellow of Goldsmiths College, University of London.
John Harvey currently resides in north London with his family.
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