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Stain of the Berry: A Russell Quant Mystery (Russell Quant Mysteries) Paperback – April 1, 2007

4 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Bidulka is skilled at juggling a number of balls, keeping the plot and subplots spinning until the end, prompting the greedy reader to demand: "Where's the next one?"." --Lavender Magazine (Minnesota)

"Bidulka is at his finest in his depictions of ordinary life..." --Lambda Book Report (New York)

"...a mainstream mystery with an engaging protagonist and an exceptionally well drawn cast of characters that intrigue and captivate the reader." --Spinetingler Magazine

"Quant...makes for a riveting hero...the kind of friend you want to have--unless you're a killer." --Mystery Scene Magazine (New York)

"Bidulka is clear evidence that writing in the mystery genre does not automatically preclude character development or emotional connection with the reader." --Wayves (Halifax)

About the Author

Anthony Bidulka is an avid traveller and party-giver. He lives in Saskatoon. This is the fourth book in his Russell Quant mystery series.
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Product Details

  • Series: Russell Quant Mysteries
  • Paperback: 358 pages
  • Publisher: Insomniac Press (April 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1897178247
  • ISBN-13: 978-1897178249
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,717,752 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Anthony Bidulka is back with the fourth installment in the Russell Quant series and returns to the simpler form of the first two mysteries, eschewing the over-the-top style of the third, Tapas on the Ramblas. With one exception. In the middle of Stain, Bidulka takes a sharp left turn and devotes a chapter to not one, but two fantastically unbelievable yarns, one involving friend Sereena's background and the other involving Russell's uncle. Unnecessary. Otherwise, this is a good story about PI Quant's efforts to solve the death of a young woman: suicide or murder and how does this relate to strange happenings elsewhere in western Canada? The characters, recurring and new, are engaging and the descriptions of Saskatoon, Moose Jaw, Vancouver and elsewhere greatly add to the enjoyment of the book. Bidulka leaves two dangling questions at the end: one about Jared and another about Russell and Alex and this reader hopes that he will be back with installment number five to answer them.
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Format: Paperback
3.5 stars.

Spoilerish.

I renounced some of my sleep time to finish this book, and I would like to do it justice, but there are a couple of considerations warring in my head.

I like dark. I like stories when a story, a setting, a character that should be light and sunny brush with the dark. I got this in the story. The mystery plot is about the consequences of thoughtless acts that seem innocuous, something small and innocent that becomes huge and scary. I think that Russell's investigation was more focused than it was in the previous book, it seemed he was more concerned, even if Sereena's disappearance was always in the back of his mind.

My problem is that the story about Sereena - who has always been a larger than life character - has become incredibly big. So big big big that I found myself fighting with my suspension of disbelief. The single parts of the story were believable, but when put together I couldn't help thinking "No. Way."

All Russell's circle of friends and acquaintances was still charming and interesting to read. Their stories are a thread that makes you want to keep reading just to know what happens to them. I wish Russell found someone for him, and there's something promising in this book, I hope. Russell is less carefree than in the previous books, I think he's beginning to face his inner needs.

This series is easy to read and entertaining, but there are slices of evil creeping through. Looking forward to the next.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I just finished this fourth book I've read in the series. They have all been different and this one was another step in the author's growth as a writer. I was enthralled. and sometimes disturbed. But I can't wait for his next one to be published, (in October) even though he has said on his website that the next book he is working on will not be a Russell Quant mystery. I hope that doesn't mean the end of the series. I know Russell and want to continue getting to know him in future books. Whatever, I will read any of Anthony's books.
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Format: Paperback
Anthony Bidulka just keeps getting better and better and I look forward to every novel. I couldn't wait till this was released in the states so I ordered as soon as it was released in Canada. I was not disappointed.

This, to me, is a much more personal Russell Quant story. He doesn't do as much world travel as in the other novels, but he does finally find the answers to several mysteries that have tantalized us since the very first novel. The ending is bittersweet and I look forward to seeing how Russell and his friends handle what life has handed to them in this story.
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