Taken from the French word meaning "darkness" or "of the night," noir is a category of modern crime fiction. Use this term for fiction of crime and detection, often in a grim urban setting, featuring petty, amoral criminals and other down-and-out characters, and permeated by a feeling of disillusionment, pessimism and despair. Examples include Jim Thompson's Hardcore and James M. Cain's The postman always rings twice.
Use for works dealing with witchcraft, spiritualism, psychic phenomena, voodooism, etc., and for works dealing with the mysterious or secret knowledge and power supposedly attainable only through these and other magical or supernatural means.
Here are entered works on the construction and analysis of plots as a literary vehicle. General collections of plots are entered under Literature--Stories, plots, etc. Collections of plots limited to specific literatures or genres are entered under headings for individual literatures or genres with subdivision Stories, plots, etc., e.g. English literature--Stories, plots, etc.; Drama--Stories, plots, etc.; American poetry--Stories, plots, etc. Collections or discussions of plots of individual literary authors are entered under the name of the author with the subdivision Stories, plots, etc.