RogerBW's Blog

The Green Mill Murder, Kerry Greenwood 03 October 2016

1993 historical detection, fifth in Greenwood's Phryne Fisher series (1920s flapper detective in Australia). During a dance competition at the Green Mill, a figure slumps to the ground. Was he the target of his attacker – or was it Phryne? And why has her partner for the evening bolted?

Plus point: homosexual characters treated even-handedly, bearing in mind the legal situation of the era. Minus point: they're desperately stereotyped, a weepy interior decorator and two rough outdoorsy women. There's also lots of infodumping on jazz: sure, we need background, and research-fests can be fun to read, but it shouldn't feel like an infodump.

This is the only book to make major mention of Phryne's talent for aviation (perhaps Greenwood thought it was an ability too far even for this perfect heroine), as she flies to a remote settlement in search of a missing brother. This section feels less like a lecture, though it may be just that I'm already familiar with the subject matter. (And the actual flying sequences are lyrical in the extreme.)

A disappointing element here is that Phryne lets a murderer go: granted, for reasons which seem sufficient to her, but I did rather fall out of willingness to go along with the story at that point. (And I'm very surprised her friends in the police are willing to keep talking to her.) The focus isn't really on the mystery, but the deductive aspects of the story are stronger than usual and the whole thing holds together pretty well.

Be warned that some copies of the 2007 Poisoned Pen Press edition are missing the final chapter. Followed by Blood and Circuses.

[Buy this at Amazon] and help support the blog. ["As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases."]

Previous in series: Death at Victoria Dock | Series: Phryne Fisher | Next in series: Blood and Circuses

Comments on this post are now closed. If you have particular grounds for adding a late comment, comment on a more recent post quoting the URL of this one.

Tags 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s 3d printing action advent of code aeronautics aikakirja anecdote animation anime army astronomy audio audio tech aviation base commerce battletech beer boardgaming book of the week bookmonth chain of command children chris chronicle church of no redeeming virtues cold war comedy computing contemporary cornish smuggler cosmic encounter coup covid-19 crime cthulhu eternal cycling dead of winter doctor who documentary drama driving drone ecchi economics en garde espionage essen 2015 essen 2016 essen 2017 essen 2018 essen 2019 essen 2022 essen 2023 existential risk falklands war fandom fanfic fantasy feminism film firefly first world war flash point flight simulation food garmin drive gazebo genesys geocaching geodata gin gkp gurps gurps 101 gus harpoon historical history horror hugo 2014 hugo 2015 hugo 2016 hugo 2017 hugo 2018 hugo 2019 hugo 2020 hugo 2022 hugo-nebula reread in brief avoid instrumented life javascript julian simpson julie enfield kickstarter kotlin learn to play leaving earth linux liquor lovecraftiana lua mecha men with beards mpd museum music mystery naval noir non-fiction one for the brow opera parody paul temple perl perl weekly challenge photography podcast politics postscript powers prediction privacy project woolsack pyracantha python quantum rail raku ranting raspberry pi reading reading boardgames social real life restaurant reviews romance rpg a day rpgs ruby rust scala science fiction scythe second world war security shipwreck simutrans smartphone south atlantic war squaddies stationery steampunk stuarts suburbia superheroes suspense television the resistance the weekly challenge thirsty meeples thriller tin soldier torg toys trailers travel type 26 type 31 type 45 vietnam war war wargaming weather wives and sweethearts writing about writing x-wing young adult
Special All book reviews, All film reviews
Produced by aikakirja v0.1