The Book Standard features an article by Gerald Bartell in which he reports the views of Otto Penzler, a well known crime fiction editor and publisher.
Penzler's view, apparently, is that female authors of crime fiction are not worthy of being given the Edgar Award for Best Novel of the Year. The Edgars, by the way, are awarded annually by the Mystery Writers of America organisation, which is a club drawing its membership from published crime writers. Each year they give a series of Edgars (named after the alleged founder of the crime story, Edgar Allan Poe) in various categories, such as Best Novel, Best Young Adult, et cetera. Naturally, only crime fiction books are eligible.
Penzler's argument, if he is correctly quoted, is that women write only 'cozies' -- crime books of an old-fashioned, non-threatening, domestic kind. In these cozy novels, murders get done without much blood, and the butler often dunnit. Such books, according to Penzler, 'are not serious literature. They don't deserve to win.' They tend to contain recipes too, he adds. And references to cats. And they just don't cut the mustard, not with ole Otto.
OK, so if women don't deserve to win the Best Novel award, who does? Men, naturally. 'Men take [writing] more seriously as art. Men labor over a book to make it literature.' And it only seems to count if it's hardboiled. That's the stuff for best book. At least according to Penzler.
Dear me. I haven't read such a load of old bollocks since I don't know when. Well, since the last time I read anything by a professor of English Literature, actually.
Even if I thought Penzler was right, which I certainly don't, I would still make the forecast that several tons of bricks are about to fall on his head. Offending all those readers of cozies, and offending every woman in America as well? What's he up to? Trying to find a quick way to commit suicide?
In any case, this whole hardboiled = art = literature = good, and cozies = non-art = entertainment = bad, is clearly complete drivel from start to finish. For a more detailed explanation of why, see chapter 5 of The Truth about Writing.