needs more demons?

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Entries Tagged as 'mystery'

Gillian Flynn: Gone Girl

10 Nov 2013 · No Comments

I had a very mixed response to Gone Girl, and a decidedly see-saw reading experience. It features two strong and very distinct authorial voices, both rendered with considerable verve, and these initially drew me in. But I quickly grew impatient with long lags between broad hints (not nearly subtle enough to be called foreshadows) and [...]

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Tags: f-author · g-title · mystery · suspense

Laura Resnick: Disappearing Nightly

09 Nov 2013 · No Comments

I liked Disappearing Nightly, but I have a bit of trouble explaining why. It’s a light contemporary fantasy with a whodunnit flavor and a dash of romance. It partakes of several genres, and I didn’t think it succeeded particularly well at any one of them. A mystery novel, for instance, needs a bit more misdirection [...]

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Tags: d-title · fantasy · mystery · r-author · romance

Willo Davis Roberts : The View from the Cherry Tree

01 Jun 2013 · No Comments

For better or worse, I found myself thinking of The View from the Cherry Tree as sort of what-if-Ralphie-of-A-Christmas-Story-witnessed-a-murder? story. (The novel substantially predates the film, of course, but post-dates the Jean Shepherd novel from which the film drew, so maybe the association isn’t entirely spurious. (Then again, it could as easily be what-if-Dennis-the-Menace-witnessed-a-murder?) The [...]

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Tags: children's · mystery · r-author · v-title

Joe Gores: 32 Cadillacs

03 Nov 2012 · No Comments

32 Cadillacs opens with a preface in which Joe Gores claims that the bones of the titular scheme, in which hapless Bay Area dealerships are confidence-tricked out of a boatload of caddies, are rooted in his real-world repoman experiences. And he cautions the easily offended that they’ll find plenty of fodder, but that he can’t [...]

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Tags: #-title · g-author · mystery

Lou Beach: 420 Characters

12 Dec 2011 · No Comments

I expected that limiting the length of a short story to 420 characters — as counted by Facebook’s software, spaces and punctuation included — would come off as a gimmick rather than an artistic constraint, but this collection of a hundred and fiftyish micro-stories is pretty amazing, in several dimensions.
The first thing I noticed [...]

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Tags: #-title · b-author · fantasy · historical · horror · mystery · romance · satire · science fiction · short stories · suspense · thriller · young adult

George Mann: The Immorality Engine

28 Nov 2011 · No Comments

I read The Immorality Engine even though I didn’t think much of the first two novels in Mann’s “Newbury and Hobbes Investigations” series, of which this is the third. Somewhat to my surprise, I liked it better than the other two.
I still found the prose a bit repetitive and the plot low on surprises, but [...]

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Tags: fantasy · historical · horror · i-title · m-author · mystery · science fiction

George Mann : The Osiris Ritual

20 Oct 2011 · No Comments

The second of Mann’s “Newbury and Hobbes” steampunk/mystery/adventures (following The Affinity Bridge) struck me as stronger overall than its predecessor, with a bit more depth of character. I found the tone a little inconsistent — there are a few moments that veer into excessively broad parody of pulp/adventure conventions and require a greater level [...]

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Tags: fantasy · historical · m-author · mystery · o-title · science fiction · thriller

Gail Carriger : Soulless

03 Aug 2011 · 1 Comment

Soulless is set in a fantasy alternate Victorian era, with vampires and werewolves alongside airships and mysterious brass apparati. It deftly mashes the modern urban fantasy/paranormal romance into the Regency-style historical romance, adds a hefty dollop of whodunnit, and seasons it with steampunk atmosphere and a tiny dash of xenophobic horror.
I liked it [...]

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Tags: c-author · fantasy · historical · mystery · romance · s-title

Alexander Jablokov: Brain Thief

14 Feb 2011 · 2 Comments

The short version: Brain Thief absolutely floored me. If you think you’d like a post-modern noir that’s dark and funny, packed with quirky characters and hair-raising thrills, and has some near-future science fiction flavor, it’s run-do-not-walk time. Bernal Hayden-Rumi works for a wealthy eccentric who funds oddball research projects, something is going identifiably wonky with [...]

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Tags: b-title · j-author · mystery · science fiction

Timothy Zahn: The Third Lynx

10 Mar 2010 · No Comments

In The Third Lynx, Zahn again puts agent Frank Compton (from Night Train to Rigel) through some of the classic noir detective paces in his unusual near-future setting, which prominently features interstellar trains. (One of several tropes Zahn explores this time around is the detective who finds himself unexpectedly a murder suspect; there are also [...]

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Tags: alphabetical-author · mystery · science fiction · t-title · z-author