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Fair Is Foul and Foul Is Fair: A gripping crime mystery with the punch of a thriller (The Malone Mystery Novels Book 2) Kindle Edition
|Length: 291 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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"Depth of Lies" by E. C. Diskin
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Every man’s weakness is portrayed here: women and money, although to be fair, for that blonde any man will kill for her and for that amount of money, even men will kill women for it. Ben Malone is making his way through a private agency, when an odd request reach his interest, he will give it a try, but an act of sympathy could go wrong even if it’s done with the best intentions.
A truly great story, a reminiscent of the classic detective stories we all remember and love but with extra touches to make it more dangerous than what it appears on the surface, I got to admit this book really surprise me and I hope it does the same for everyone who buy it and read it, because you really need to read it.
The Malone Mystery Series is focused on the eccentric Ben Malone introduced in Book 1 COME WHAT MAY and now continues to alter personalities in FAIR IS FOUL AND FOUL IS FAIR from his status as a LAPD detective to his new role as a private eye running his own private investigation agency in Los Angeles.
Just as Larry opens his story with the first few lines, it is best to follow his synopsis for these further challenging adventures of Ben Malone. ‘Amid his adjustment from LAPD detective to running his own private investigations agency, a strikingly beautiful blonde carrying a bundle of cash pays a visit to Malone's office with a somewhat unusual problem. The seductive blonde confides to Malone that she has witnessed a murder, but for delicate, personal reasons cannot go to the police to report what she saw. Empathetic with her situation, Malone agrees to take on the unique case even though it is not the kind of assignment a private detective sees every day. He must find and bring to the attention of the L.A.P.D., the identities of the suspected murderers so that justice can take its course without involving his client. All in all, in the beginning, the case seems innocuous enough to Malone, an easy money assignment. That is until things start to unravel. There are three more murders connected to the first one before Malone's investigation even gets untracked. From there, like an out of control roller coaster, things go downhill fast and from bad to worse. Malone learns that the string of murders is mob-connected. The man believed behind them is a heavy hitter, the vicious mob boss of the Los Angeles' Ukrainian mafia and a man who will stop at nothing to eliminate Malone's client. In the initial confrontation with the Ukrainian gangster, Malone is stunned to learn that his love interest, feisty psychiatrist Sara Bernstein is caught in the crosshairs, having been abducted by associates of the mob boss while attending a conference in San Francisco. She is held hostage by the mobster's minions and used as leverage to force Malone to betray the whereabouts of his client. He also discovers that things may not be as they first appeared with his drop-dead gorgeous client. She may be a femme fatale up to her pretty little ears in a little criminal behavior of her own. Malone races against time, first to rescue Bernstein, and then to sort the innocent from the guilty in time to solve what rapidly evolves into a complicated web of deceit and criminal wrongdoing where it begins to look like fair is foul, and foul is fair.’
Strong, informed writing here with a zesty influx of erotica to offer relief from the tensions. Written as only someone with experience in law enforcement could write, this story not only entertain, but it also shares the functions of just how the detective angle fits in with details rarely encountered in crime thrillers. This is a fine book and still offers room for further installments in this satisfying series. Grady Harp, April 17
Ben Malone, P.I., is on the case of an escort who needs protection from a crime lord because she witnessed the murder of one of her clients. At least...that’s what she claims. When Malone accepts the case, he finds more than murder, he finds more murder, and narcotics, and human trafficking. And lies. Soon, he and his girlfriend are in danger. He’ll have to think fast to come out of this one alive.
I think it’s a good plot. There is a lot going on here with just enough complexities and twists to keep it interesting. Plot-wise.
Ben Malone: Private investigator, former homicide investigator, former Army, drives a Toyota Camry
Evania Sterling: escort, married, blonde, blue eyes, tall, drives a BMW Z4
Jaime Reyes: homicide investigator, has a sister
Nick Makara: white hair, portly, sixties, golfer, owns a shipping company
These are the main characters along with Sara, Ben’s girlfriend who is a psychiatrist. Coincidentally, at the same time I was reading this, I was listening to a Spenser novel and there are similarities between the characters. All Darter had to do was put in a large black man to accompany Malone...well, anyway…
The characters are fine. I think they’re well rounded with enough background information and descriptions. I thought Malone wasn’t as serious at the beginning as he might have been, but that could be his nature.
A lot of people don’t use contractions and it was enough to be noticeable and seem unnatural. Otherwise, the conversations went well. A bit long in the scenes with the FBI.
First person from Malone’s POV. Profanity. Small to medium-sized words are incorrect in many sentences.
The biggest problem I had with this is that although the book is a longer one than usual, it’s a fast read. The reason it’s lengthy is there’s a lot of unnecessary repetition and unnecessary information.
Example: Malone goes through a lot of adventure with Evania and Makara and when he finally gets around to spilling the story to Reyes, he spills it all. What I mean is, the author had more than a summary of every single scene when Malone relates the story to Reyes. I’m thinking, “Get on with it!” This lengthy diatribe could have been neatly summarized in about three paragraphs.
Example: There’s a lot of repetition of previous events when discussing things with the FBI.
Example: Evania’s story near the end was too long. After a bunch of slow time, this is an obvious filler before the climax.
Example: There is a scene detailing a meal. Do something with a chicken, cut up veggies, do something else with the chicken, grab a bowl for salad, do something else with the chicken...and so on. This and many other scenes tended to drag down the story. There is a lot of filler between the action parts and meeting with the FBI and before the showdown.
Speaking of the climax – it was anti-climactic. Little action and it ends quickly. Too quickly for the long set up.
Another problem is when Malone rescues Sara and they and Reyes are deciding their next plan of action, Malone cautions Sara not to be going out because he doesn’t want the bad guys to know she’s been rescued. A few minutes later, they all decide to go out to lunch...on a restaurant patio. What happened to being worried about being out in public?
A good plot, but some of the writing needed to be a lot tighter...and shorter.
Ben Malone is a strong character who is good at planning and sometimes flying by the seat of his pants when necessary. He seems good at getting himself into dangerous situations but somehow comes out of it. His girlfriend Sara and detective friend Reyes are two characters that well developed and stand by him.
The story revolves around a criminal named Makara who is involved in drugs and human trafficking. Malone gets tangled up with him and many other unsavory characters in his exploits.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who like action and intrigue.
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