Author Archives: ravenpasser

Youdunnit

Here’s the deal. Penguin and Specsavers ask crime fans ‘in the twitter community’ (Wot???) to ‘contribute plot devices’. Three established crime writers are then asked to build a short story around these ‘crowdsourced plot points’. Does anything interesting result? No. … Continue reading

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L.A.Noir – John Buntin

This is history, not fiction, but it’s just as compelling – and sometimes it stretches the honest reader’s credulity in ways no story-teller could get away with. Buntin organizes his account of lawlessness in the city of the angels around … Continue reading

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Sherlock Holmes: The Stuff of Nightmares – James Lovegrove

A giant armoured figure is stalking the East End in pursuit of evil-doers.  Holmes has a rival of a very different stamp.  As bombs explode ever closer to the monarch herself, the mysterious Baron Cauchemar join forces to thwart a … Continue reading

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Thicker Than Water – Kerry Wilkinson (Pan Macmillan)

A boy disappears from the house where he he has been baby-sitting, leaving the house and the baby unharmed.  His body is found in the bath-tub of a supermarket assistant – and soon afterwards she too is found suffocated in … Continue reading

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Hit Me – Lawrence Block

Bit surprised to find that LB has left only one set of dabs on Mean Streets – and wasn’t highly rated. I have a weakness for wisecracks, and though this is only middling Block, it’s a fair introduction to a … Continue reading

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Poirot’s Last Gasp

On November 13th 2013 David Suchet brought 25 years of stylish telly to a close. Agatha’s Christie’s Belgian sleuth made his first print appearance in 1920 (The Mysterious Affair at Styles) and his last in 1975. But Curtain was actually … Continue reading

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Tuesday’s Gone by Nicci French

A man’s naked body is discovered in the flat of a woman too mentally disordered to tell the police who he is or how he got there. A cool, sophisticated and supremely competent investigation from two-in-one Nicci (Gerrard) and (Sean) … Continue reading

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The Killing House by Chris Mooney; too complicated by half.

Plot 1: a child abducted years ago – super-creepy kidnapper murders parents. Plot 2: ace escapologist/wronged FBI most-wanted pursues kidnapper. Plot 3: FBI master-mind pursues pursuer. Chris Mooney admits that this book was ‘especially difficult’. That should have told him … Continue reading

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Crocodile Tears by Mark O’Sullivan (Transworld Ireland)

As Dublin braces itself for a blizzard, a wealthy property developer is found murdered. So far Mark O’Sullivan is best known as a writer for young adults, but that’s going to change. This is a rich beginning. Both the Republic … Continue reading

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Dandy Gilver and a Bothersome Number of Corpses by Catriona McPherson

Silly stuff – and a criminal waste of talent. Sourpuss that I am, I loathe arch even more than cute. Catriona McPherson has loads going for her. She’s steeped herself in period lingo, and Dandy Gilver is pitch perfect. Clothes, … Continue reading

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