My enjoyment of the work of H. P. Lovecraft is well known. I’ve recently been reading Lovecraft Unbound, an anthology of Lovecraft-inspired fiction that I picked up on Kindle for 78p, and it’s been interesting so far. I think when I was a kid I would have been disappointed by it, because what I wanted was more of the same. Or, more accurately, more Deep Ones, more Cthulhu, more monsters, rather than fiction inspired by Lovecraft per se. But that’s not the point!
The point is that for the most part, these stories are set in the modern day — and are often concerned with features of modern life such as global warming, creationism and so on. This got me to thinking about the division among Lovecraft fans between those who believe that because Lovecraft wrote in his present day, Lovecraft-influenced stories should be set in the present day and those who, perhaps fascinated as much by the writer’s life as by his work, are interested in his stories as period pieces. The H. P. Lovecraft Historical Society are an interesting example of the latter; Stuart Gordon is a staunch proponent of the former.
And I was just wondering if there are a lot of other authors of whom this is true? There was that updated version of The Big Sleep that was set, for some inexplicable reason, in the UK, for example, but most modern noir stories have some kind of reference, stylistic or otherwise, to the inter- or post-war periods. So clearly for a lot of people there’s a whole class of period fiction that is not historical fiction and yet appeals to people in the same way.
The way the question appeared in my mind was “has anyone made an updated version of an Agatha Christie story? And if so, why?”