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Murder Is My Racquet: Fourteen Original Tales of Love, Death, and Tennis by Today's Great Writers (Original Tennis Mysteries) Hardcover – June 2, 2005

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Mystery maven Penzler's latest all-original sports anthology offers 14 mostly high-quality tales of the underside of lawn tennis, the traditional game of sometimes not so gentle men (and women). There's something to suit every taste, from the short and light (Daniel Stashower's "A Peach of a Shot" and Kinky Friedman's "Tennis, Anyone?") to grittier psychological stories (John Harvey's "Promise" and Robert Leuci's "A Killer Overhead"). In Lisa Scottoline's amusing "Love Match," the tennis-playing protagonist is just plain lucky to be in the right place at the right time. Set in the South in 1948, Stephen Hunter's gripping "Stephen Longacre's Greatest Match" provides a lesson in race relations when a young white man, a ne'er-do-well from a wealthy family, tries to redeem himself by taking on a poor black man as his doubles partner. Notable chiefly for its closing pun is David Morrell's "Continental Grip," about the baffling murder of a Sante Fe, N.Mex., tennis pro. Other top-rank contributors include Lawrence Block, James W. Hall, Peter Lovesey and Judith Kelman. This tome is the perfect companion to have in the bag for those rain delays at Wimbledon.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Preloaded Digital Audio Player edition.

From Booklist

^BPenzler, the venerable mystery editor and anthologist, has compiled several top-notch thematic anthologies (on boxing and baseball, for example). This time his thematic arrow misses the mark. Although most of these 14 original stories are good (and some are excellent), too few of them have any real connection to the game of tennis, which is supposedly the book's raison d'etre. Lawrence Block's contribution is a standout: a clever story about a tennis player with anger-management issues in which the game is integral to the story. On the other hand, Kinky Friedman's "Tennis, Anyone?" is only peripherally about tennis; it feels as though the game was inserted into the story to make it fit the anthology's theme. Tennis enthusiasts may be disappointed by the way their passion is given such short shrift; fans of mystery short stories, however, at least those for whom thematic relevance isn't so important, will be more forgiving. With James W. Hall, Mike Lupica, Lisa Scottoline, Peter Lovesey, and others, some of the genre's best are on display here, even if they don't seem much interested in tennis. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Product Details

  • Series: Original Tennis Mysteries
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Mysterious Press; 1st edition (June 2, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0892960159
  • ISBN-13: 978-0892960156
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.1 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,873,550 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
June 27,2005

There's something for everyone in Penzler's anthology. From a tennis player with anger-management issues to Lisa Scottoline's "Love Match," to a baffling murder of a Sante Fe, New Mexico tennis pro.

Murder is My Racquet is a dark-suspense novel and an excitingly new way to read about the elite game of tennis. Murder and mayhem seeded deep within the world of aristocratic tennis. From eye-popping vile drop shots, to overhanging smashes, and butchering serves, this is certainly a side of tennis you've never encountered before.

Readers will get a first-hand glimpse and salty taste of ordinary human beings trampling over one another as they deal with the eminence of a high-strung race in becoming an international tennis star. No matter what your level of understanding is of the game, readers will learn of the many promotional opportunities these misfits may garner upon winning, the elimination of tournament competition, and the strategy of tennis in general.

Some of the genre's best are on display within the pages of Murder is my Racquet and just to name a few: Lawrence Block, James W. Hall, Stephen Hunter, Peter Lovesey and Judith Kelman. Tennis enthusiasts and mystery fans are sure to sink their teeth into this thematic compilation!

Reviewed by Betsie
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Format: Hardcover
Murder Is My Racquet is an interesting collection of short stories revolving around the sport of tennis, including backyard tennis all the way to the U. S. Open. Usually thought of as a gentle sport, Otto Penzler gathers a collection of stories to change our minds. In "Terrible Tommy Terhume," we meet a good tennis star with a temper problem, but only on court. He goes to great lengths to change his personality. In "Six Love," a loving father tries murder to help his daughter become a champion only to have a surprise ending. In "Promise," a superstar tennis player is blackmailed, only to be shocked when she finds out who.

"A Debt to the Devil" begins with a surprising death which becomes ruled as being a break in. An investigator finds out the amazing truth. "Stephen Longacre's Greatest Match" is about a spoiled rich kid who gets into trouble. Instead of punishment, he must play in a tennis tournament, only to upset the whole country club. In "No Strings," a college tennis squad appears to be under a spell. Anyone who is better than Roy Duchamps gets hurt, one way or another. "A Killer Overhead" tells about a father's concern that is taken care of differently than expected. Death happens on Court Eleven in the short story "Needle Match." In "The Rematch," we learn of an umpire who gets his revenge. A tennis coach is murdered holding his racquet using his beloved Continental Grip in a story of the same name. "Close Match" is a story about a superstar tennis player trying to forget about being blackmailed. While playing tennis, two cops find a dead body in the park in "Love Match." The last story, "A Peach of a Shot," is about two couples playing tennis.

A fast paced book, Murder Is My Racquet, is an enjoyable read.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As you would expect in a book with 14 authors contributing stories, there is variety here that is both irritating and exciting. The theme is tennis... matches, competition, scoring, and the underbelly of tennis "fandom" and playing... murder, extortion, and more.

Ironically, I bought this book for a tennis fan. It didn't grab her! But I found the stories enjoyable and entertaining. What is it I don't know?
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