Tag Archives: Crime

Whiskey Sour by J.A. Konrath


Whiskey Sour (Jack Daniels Mystery, #1)Whiskey Sour by J.A. Konrath

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A decent crime novel, my only criticism is a standing one of most crime fiction: Why is violence towards women ALWAYS sexual violence? Men *just* get killed (with exceptions, of course), women get killed, raped, and tortured in hideously graphic ways – pretty much every time. This does, I suppose, reflect reality up to a point, particularly in reinforcing the fact that rape is a crime of anger and NOT attraction. So it works both ways.

Jacqueline “Jack” Daniels is a police Lieutenant in Chicago. A string of (sexually) brutal murders of women by the self-proclaimed “Gingerbread man” are the focus of Jack’s and her partner Herb’s investigation. The FBI in this novel are portrayed as incompetent, coming up with off-the-wall criminal profile details, which (if you read my review of Mindhunter by John E Douglas, and the book itself) shouldn’t be how a profile is generated; but it serves the purpose of this story. Jack and Herb follow the evidence, as an investigator should. Jack, being a “woman” ends up becoming the focus of the Gingerbread man’s rage, and is therefore taken off her own investigation (officially). Which does lead to the men in the story essentially being awarded all the credit, despite Jack being both lead investigator and target. She saves her own life more than once!

The details of the crimes are quite jarring as described, and the pace of the novel is quite fast, keeping the reader moving forwards at a steady rate. Jack is a competent investigator, and deserves more credit for the work she put in! Hopefully, when I read further novels in this series, she gets the accolades that should be coming her way.

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Mr. Peanut by Adam Ross


Mr. PeanutMr. Peanut by Adam Ross

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

An odd one. I think I liked it, but it was so hard to read in places. By which I mean the subject matter was both infuriating and reflective of reality. Making me feel, I suppose, helpless.
That was probably the point..! Minor SPOILERS in the review below:

Mr Peanut is actually three different, but tangentially related, mysteries. The first is David Pepin, who is accused of killing his wife. He pleads innocent, despite spending a lot of time actually plotting her demise. The two investigators have their own strange and sordid histories, each relating to their marital strife. Hastroll’s wife refuses to leave her bed, possibly due to a form of depression, but refuses to explain her actions. Sheppard’s wife was herself murdered, and there remains a grey area of what actually happened that night.

Told in a non-linear fashion, this narrative is tricky to keep track of. The characters, both victims and perpetrators seem pretty unlike-able! If only people would actually talk straight with one another, the situations might have been easier – or avoided all together. The characters seem to get in a state because their respective other-halves can’t read their minds. Obviously. That old trope of “if you haven’t figured it out already, then I’m not going to tell you” attitude is useless in reality because it just gets you nowhere.

COMMUNICATION! Is very important in a relationship.. that includes friends, and marriage, and well most walks of life. Books do tend to teach you important lessons.  So maybe that was the point!

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Silver Blaze by Arthur Conan Doyle


Silver Blaze (The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, #1)Silver Blaze by Arthur Conan Doyle

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

One (rich) man and his (race) horse.
In fairness, there’s not a lot more to say about this story. Aside from remembering, of course, that the curious incident of the dog in the night time, is that the dog did not bark – the absence of any sound or indication, is that very curious incident.

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The Adventure of the Copper Beeches by Arthur Conan Doyle


The Adventure of the Copper Beeches
The Adventure of the Copper Beeches by Arthur Conan Doyle

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A governess who has been struggling to find work is suddenly provided with a too-good-to-be-true offer by a corpulent gentleman and his wife, who have some strange requests for her behaviour. Is her new employer hiding something? Yes, they are. Obviously.

Another short story which has Sherlock solving the case by simply disproving a number of theories that he had come up with prior to even leaving Baker St., leaving the one remaining solution.

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The Adventure of the Beryl Coronet by Arthur Conan Doyle


The Adventure of the Beryl Coronet
The Adventure of the Beryl Coronet by Arthur Conan Doyle

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A short one. Part of a fancy coronet goes missing. Sherlock Holmes talks down to people, runs around a bit without telling Watson what he’s doing, and then proudly produces the missing gems with a flourish and some self-congratulating. That’s about it!

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