Quote of the Week

"The key is to commit crimes so confusing that police feel too stupid to even write a crime report about them."
Randy K. Milholland, Something Positive Comic
10-30-03. Web Comic Pioneer

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

"The Dirty Secrets Club" by Meg Gardiner

For the mystery purists out there I think this is considered a suspense novel. I found this book/novelist on one of the book trading services I use and decided the premise sounded good and appropriate for the G author. This is the first in a series of books with forensic anthropologist Jo Beckett. Jo's job is to complete a psychological autopsy on a recent death. She soon discovers that the victim was wrapped up in what would be called "the dirty secrets club" and one by one the members are being stalked and killed. The thread of dark and dirty secrets lead Jo down some literal and figurative dirty paths. The suspense part is some chases scenes by a creepy club master that give you chills as you can imagine would make a great thriller movie. I had been acquainted with forensic anthropology in other series, but never through a psychological perspective. Without giving away the plot twists, Jo is brought into the underworld of sexual secrets and the clash of conscience and what people will do to protect loved ones. Jo is a smart character and likeable and a bit of a superwoman in more ways that one. I find myself wanting to read more in this series. The mystery part was interesting and a significant plot twist at the end was a total surprise. This would be a great beach read and also available as an audio. Check this author out and be prepared for a suspenseful ride.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Five Bells and Bladebone confusing choice

"The Five Bells and Bladestone" by Martha Grimes made it as my "G" book simply because it was on my bookshelf. Originally, I had picked it up at a book sale because I had heard of the author vaguely and there it was when I needed it. This book published in 1987 is ninth in the prolific series featuring protagonist Richard Jury and his friend, wealthy Melrose Plant. In spite of that it was fairly easy to follow the story and realize who the characters were from other books. It was an engaging but confusing read. To tell the truth, I really still don't know who exactly either the victim or the killer was and I thought I knew half way through the book. I found the characters to be fairly stereotypical: gay antique dealer, ornery aunt, lovely but not quite available female interest, crotchety bar tenders, etc. All of the novels in the series are named for English pubs, a fact which initially intrigued me. In this one, the chapters are all named for lines in a poem. Twenty-three years later, Grimes is still publishing mysteries so I feel at some point I will try another one.
An interesting side note is, that although my blog partner and I usually surprise each other with our choice of alphabetical authors, this time we both chose Grimes. Can't wait to see what she has to say.