The offbeat series set at the beginning of the previous century and featuring a pair of shipboard detectives continues with its seventh installment. The format remains unchanged: George Porter Dillman and Genevieve Masefield are working onboard an ocean liner, posing as a couple of eligible singles (in fact they're happily married) while they search for foul play. The characters they encounter are the usual assortment of upper-class snobs and suspicious hangers-on. And the setting continues to move from one ritzy ocean liner to another. And yet, like any episode of Murder, She Wrote
, it all feels different from the stories that preceded it. Allen really is a master of the escapist mystery, and his secret appears to be this: the books revel in their frothiness. Everything is just a little more Technicolor than real life--the characters just that little bit stuffier, or seedier, or more disreputable than actual human beings. We all know this stuff wouldn't really happen, that a pair of detectives wouldn't find murder onboard every ship on which they sail, but who cares? It's smooth sailing for this likable series, with no final port in sight. David PittCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
In Praise of Conrad Allen
"There's an undeniable elegance to Allen's series. . . . Captivating reading."
---Booklist on Murder on the Salsette
"Lighthearted . . . Murder on the Marmora should please mystery readers seeking purely escapist fare."
---Publishers Weekly on Murder on the Marmora
"The intimate picture of shipboard activity makes this an unusual, suspenseful mystery."
---The Oklahoman on Murder on the Caronia
"A clever and amusing tale of sea-bound adventure. Delightful escapism."
---Chicago Sun-Times on Murder on the Minnesota
"A success as both mystery and entertainment."
---The Cincinnati Post on Murder on the Mauretania
"The shipboard atmosphere does sparkle, especially in the first-class staterooms and elegantly fitted public rooms, where the better class of passengers congregate to flash their jewelry and cheat at cards."
---Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review, on Murder on the Lusitania