Joan Kahn Collection
Wednesday March 14th 2007, 12:09 pm
Filed under: News

The Browne Library of Bowling Green State University is honored to announce that it has received a substantial gift of more than 500 volumes from the personal library of Joan Kahn, distinguished editor and author. Miss Kahn, who passed away on October 11, 1994 at the age of eighty, was one of the premier editors of mystery fiction of the century: for more than forty years, the imprint, “A Joan Kahn Book,” guaranteed a story of exceptional quality.

She began a 34-year tenure at Harper Brothers (later Harper & Row) in 1946, editing books on history, art, theater, and travel, and served as editor for the long-lived series, “Harper Novels of Suspense.” She also edited books for Ticknor & Fields, Dutton and St. Martin’s Press, from which she retired in 1989. The authors whose works she brought to the attention of American mystery fanciers included Dorothy L. Sayers, Dick Francis, Patricia Highsmith, Michael Gilbert, Julian Symons, John Creasey, Nicolas Freeling, Nicholas Blake, Jonathan Gash, Jane Langton, and Tony Hillerman.

Miss Kahn also wrote two novels, To Meet Miss Long (1943) and Open House (1946) and four children’s books. In addition, she edited eleven anthologies of mystery stories.

Miss Kahn received the Ellery Queen Award from the Mystery Writers of America in 1985 for her lifetime of services to mystery fiction; upon her retirement she was awarded a special Edgar Allan Poe Award from the same association, celebrating her long and distinguished career in mystery publishing.

The Browne Library received more than 500 titles from Miss Kahn’s library, which include inscribed volumes from authors who admired her work and copies of the books she edited, making a significant addition to the Library’s extensive collections of mystery and suspense fiction. The Browne Library is the largest academic library in the United States devoted to the acquisition and preservation of primary research materials documenting American popular culture of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

The collections of the Browne Library are open to all interested researchers. For further information, please contact the Head Librarian, Browne Library, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio, 43403 (+1-419-372-2450).