Monday, January 15, 2007

Review: Detection Unlimited

Title: Detection Unlimited
Author: Georgette Heyer
Publisher: Arrow Books (most recent edition)
# of Pages: 222

Favorite line: "The longer I live the more convinced I become that self-sacrificing people do a great deal of harm in the world."

Rating: 8/10

Book 1 of the TBR Challenge

Synopsis (from amazon.co.uk)
Slumped on a seat under an oak tree is old Sampson Warrenby, with a bullet through his brain. He is discovered by his anxious niece, Mavis, who is just one of the ten people in the village in the running for chief suspect, having just cause to dislike Warrenby intensely. Only Chief Inspector Hemingway can uncover which of the ten has turned hatred into murder.

As part of the 2007 TBR Challenge, I chose to read one mystery by Georgette Heyer. I chose to read this one as my first book. Why? Because for some reason, at this moment, NONE of the books on my TBR list appeal to me! I am a very moody reader- and apparently, I'm not in the mood for anything. So, knowing that I can always count on a Heyer Regency novel to pull me out of any slump or case of the blues, I decided to go for one of her mystery novels. I own most of them, but have never read one- I usually concentrate on the Regencies- so this was somewhat new for me.

As I'm used to her historical fiction novels, it was actually kind of difficult for me to get used to Heyer writing in a more contemporary (England in the 1950s) setting. It was really kind of a jolt! I was stumbling about trying to figure out plot details and characters for a good 40 pages or so. But then, eventually it clicked.

Detection Unlimited bears little resemblance to Heyer's historical romances. There are a great many characters in a small village, and no very obvious hero or heroine to root for. However, Heyer's customary wit and humor make their appearance several times in the story and she, as ever, drew a smile to my face with her dialogues.

I think I will continue to prefer Heyer's Regencies to her mysteries- she was, after all, the author who really first kicked off my obsession with all things Georgian and Regency England. But Detection Unlimited was an enjoyable mystery with a sufficient number of twists to the end to keep me interested :-) A good book to start the challenge with, and a great book to motivate me to read more of Heyer's mysteries!

2 comments:

  1. Congratulations on finishing your first book for the challenge! I have barely started my first book for the TBR Challenge. I was so excited to start my first book and then when it came time, I kept stalling. Not sure what that was about.

    A mystery by an author you know sounds like a good place to start if you need a kick start. I've never read anything by Heyer, but then I don't often read romances. I might give her mysteries a try though. Thanks for the great review!

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  2. I'm a moody reader too, it's making the challenges hard because once they go on a list - I don't particularly want to read them!

    I love Georgette Heyer & her romance novels and while I don't hate romance novels, I don't normally read them. Her Tommy & Tuppence novels are quite good too. They are different than her historical fiction!

    Congrats on finishing Book One!

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