- File Size: 2978 KB
- Print Length: 667 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Street Car Mysteries (February 28, 2017)
- Publication Date: February 28, 2017
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B06XCT1W1C
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,277,938 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Literary Outings: Omnibus II (Harry Reese Mysteries) Kindle Edition
"Bones Don't Lie" by Melinda Leigh
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This omnibus contains the following Harry Reese mysteries:
A Charm of Powerful Trouble.
So in the beginning of the novel we find Harry out of work and Emmie being bored. She invited her relatives from province - the Reeses live in New York City. She also gets to plan an entertainment program for them, so Harry knows something unexpected, dangerous, and highly illogical is in store. When a fake Chinese man takes the party into a fake Chinatown to show fake opium den Harry is not surprised. When a fake jealous husband of a fake wife shows up and shoots her fake lover from a fake gun, Harry is still not surprised. When it turns out the victim is really dead, even Emmie who planned the whole show gets surprised. In fact Harry who knew what usually happens when Emmie plans something, appeared to be not surprised - still. If you think this is all sounds crazy, this is actually the sanest part of the novel.
Of all the books of the series this one has the craziest plot, hands down; I mean it in a good sense. I also chuckled a lot when I read the book, so the humor of the previous books is still present, I am happy to say.
Fair Play's a Jewel.
This time Harry learns by accident that Emmie travels to Portland under an alias. Fortunately for everybody else involved he also happened to get his own assignment not far from the same city: he is the only person who can talk some sense into Emmie sometimes. So it all started innocently enough with a Pinkerton detective, eel sexual orgies, insurance fraud, a dead body, assassination attempts, unlawful book publishing, people drinking practically non-stop in alcohol-free state, corrupt cops, etc. It only got much crazier from here.
The craziness and the humor typical for any book of the series are still present - as well as a fairly complicated mystery. This time practically everybody and their brother used aliases at one point or the other so I strongly advice to keep track of who is who and all of their names, otherwise you would get hopelessly lost. The only difference I could think of: this installment has quite a lot of sexual innuendos which - if I really want to nitpick - became a little too much by the end of the book; they are not offensive though.
Posing in Paradise
Emmie completely lost interest in murders spending all her time writing fiction hoping for a big break as a writer. Having one's work published is the biggest obstacle for a new writer wannabe, so she devoted all her energies to get a publisher interested in her work. It so happened that none other than Henry James (by the way Harry described his books as the best cure for insomnia and having read The Turn of the Screw I completely agree) decided to visit her hometown and give a speech. Such an opportunity was too good to pass, so Emmie announced she wanted to visit her mother. Harry knew right away that something was cooking, but he was broke at the moment and in debt to a gambler who had a goon in his employ to collect money. First visit from a nice friendly goon convinced Harry visiting his mother-in-law might not be such a bad idea.
As you can guess the book (and the whole series) is strongly character-driven. They are highly humorous with the humor reminding me of P.G. Wodehouse. I laughed probably just two times reading, but chuckled practically non-stop at the absurdity of situations and the fact that they looked practically normal from the right angle.
It is like watching an old screwball comedy at the movies. The writing is descriptive and you can see the characters and laugh as they get themselves in and out of the impossible situations that Emmie usually lands them in.
In A Charm of Powerful Trouble we get another delightful romp in Emmie-land.
This mystery was a bit less complicated and easier to follow than in the previous volumes in this series but certainly no less enjoyable. In fact, I think I enjoyed it even more. The old favorite characters are back along with a few new ones that may reappear in the future. I am not sure whether each volume gets better than the last or because the characters are so familiar each adventure just seems better than the last because the reader is back with old friends.
In Fair Play's a Jewel, the chess match begins between Harry and Emmie on the first page.
This volume has the added dimension of sexual inuendo that is very well done. Without the glossary at the end of the book I am sure much would go over the heads of some readers.
The pace is brisk and the writing keeps the reader engaged and amused. While Emmie took more of a supporting role in this book, her influence was evident throughout as this screwball comedy unfolds. There is so much action with so many red herrings the perpetrator is not readily evident which makes the reader reluctant to put it down.
In Posing in Paradise, we meet some of Emmie’s family members who are just as complex as she is.
This book has less Emmie and more Harry. He reminded me more of The Thin Man movies with the quick often snide remarks. Emmie and Harry's marriage has seemed to grow in this book and their interactions seemed less close than in previous books, but that is how marriages go.
There is always a dead body that falls into their path and their combined detective skills are needed to find the murderer.
I think the reason I rate this book slightly lower than the others in the series is that there was less of Emmie in the solving of the crime. She actually seemed to have little interest in the original death so Harry was left more to his own devices and it was more straightforward than in the previous books.
The characters are just as inventive and enjoyable as always and Emmie continued to contrive circumstances that require a scorecard to keep the players straight. It keeps me anxious to get home in order to read more of their adventures. (We were lucky to have a blackout tonight so I could do nothing but read to finish the book.)
I do look forward to the next book in the series and congratulate the author on the way he wove in Emmie's family and a new antagonist in the form of her nephew Pluribus.