Archive for 'Greenwood, Kerry'
EARTHLY DELIGHTS is the first book in a new series by Australian author Kerry Greenwood. Set in present day Melbourne, EARTHLY DELIGHTS is the name of a bakery owned and operated by Corinna Chapman. Corinna is a rat race drop-out who has set herself up nicely in a distinctive old apartment building filled with interesting and exotic neighbors â€“ several of whom also run their own businesses out of the ground floor shops.
But early one morning, Corinna discovers a junkie who has overdosed in the alley outside her shop. In the process of saving the girlâ€™s life, Corinna meets Daniel, who works on the Soup Bus (a traveling soup kitchen) and is exposed to a world previously unknown to her â€“ one of runaway teens who live on the street and prostitute themselves to pay for their drug habits.
While she is trying to help out these young street people, Corinna and her fellow female apartment dwellers are also being persecuted. Someone has taken to sending anonymous letters accusing them of being scarlet women and defacing their shops and belongings. But someone has badly underestimated Corinna and her determination to set things right.
Greenwood is not afraid to tackle sensitive subjects head-on and, by doing this, she both empowers her characters and makes the story more dynamic. Corinna isnâ€™t going from suspect to suspect probing to find out their secrets. Instead, Greenwood puts them right out in the open for you. And while I could rattle off all the issues that Greenwoodâ€™s characters are dealing with or characteristics that she has included in their personalities, I would prefer to let you discover them for yourself.
If the drug and persecution themes of the book seem too heavy, let me reassure you and say that they are leavened a little by humor. The eclectic mix of apartment neighbors, a budding romance with Daniel, and the overall feeling that you can change the world if you do it a little bit at a time keep this from being a depressing book.
Those of you who havenâ€™t read Greenwood before may be a little shocked at what she manages to include in a seemingly straightforward mystery. I know that she continues to surprise me. On one or two occasions, I have also found myself annoyed by things that werenâ€™t explained fully. These are usually tangential details, but things that my fussy mind wanted cleared up. But since they havenâ€™t been key to the mystery, they donâ€™t bother me too much.
Did I guess it? Yes. Favorite character? This is a really tough call for this book because there are so many excellent ones. I have to go with Mistress Dread. Will I read another? Absolutely.
Mystery Book Reviews by Liz at http://reviewedbyliz.com Â©2007
Phryne Fisher is an enchanting young socialite who enjoys setting society in 1928 slightly on its ear. She drives a cool car, flies planes, is a crack shot, and shows up at house parties with her Chinese lover, scandalizing her hosts and fellow guests. And she is gorgeous and wealthy, too. Is it wrong to be jealous of a fictional character?
Urn Burial follows a typical theme for mysteries set in the 20â€™s â€“ a weekend party at a country house. So it is no big surprise when the river cuts the house off from the town and they are all trapped with a murderer. The cast of characters is also as expected with some old maids, a military man, young socialites and dashing young men. But this setup has some modern twists. I donâ€™t remember books written in the 20â€™s having quite so much sex in them, for example. Not that this is a bad thing, just different. The attitudes and actions of the characters also have a touch of modernity to them â€“ there are stronger roles for women and less social rigidity that probably existed at the time.
And did I mention that this book is set in Australia? Another interesting twist on the classic mystery. This book highlights and incorporates into the story some of the amazing natural wonders found all over Australia.
This book is a good read. The characters are good, the setting interesting, and the urn theme is bizarre and intriguing. There is some sex, some action, and a good ending. If the mystery is a little weaker than you might like, you donâ€™t notice much because it is all of a piece and enjoyable.
Did I guess it? Parts. Will I read more? Yes, Iâ€™m looking forward to them!
Mystery Book Reviews by Reviewed By Liz.com Â©2006