One Bite at a Time




Thursday, April 18, 2013

I Hear the Sirens in the Street

Since New Mystery Reader got me the book, it’s only fair they get the review. Here’s a tease:

I live to cite Raymond Chandler to buttress my points. In his classic essay, ”The Simple Art of Murder,” Chandler wrote:

I suppose the principal dilemma of the traditional or classic or straight-deductive or logic—and—deduction novel of detection is that for any approach to perfection it demands a combination of qualities not found in the same mind. The cool-headed constructionist does not also come across with lively characters, sharp dialogue, a sense of pace and an acute use of observed detail. The grim logician has as much atmosphere as a drawing-board. The scientific sleuth has a nice new shiny laboratory, but I’m sorry I can’t remember the face. The fellow who can write you a vivid and colorful prose simply won’t be bothered with the coolie labor of breaking down unbreakable alibis. The master of rare knowledge is living psychologically in the age of the hoop skirt. If you know all you should know about ceramics and Egyptian needlework, you don’t know anything at all about the police. If you know that platinum won’t melt under about 2800 degrees F. by itself, but will melt at the glance of a pair of deep blue eyes when put close to a bar of lead, then you don’t know how men make love in the twentieth century. And if you know enough about the elegant flânerie of the pre-war French Riviera to lay your story in that locale, you don’t know that a couple of capsules of barbital small enough to be swallowed will not only not kill a man—they will not even put him to sleep, if he fights against them.

Chandler was wrong, but we may excuse him his error; Adrian McKinty had yet to be born.

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I’ll post the link to the review when it’s available, but there’s no reason for you not to pre-order your copy now.

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