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Les Blatt
Interests: Classic mystery stories, communications, writing, podcasting, blogging, traveling, social media, web 2.0
Recent Activity
Thanks, Margot. Need I say how much fun I had in doing it?
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Thanks to you too, Bev, for all the work you put into organizing (and supervising) these challenges!
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I've reviewed several Leo Bruce books (see the backlist, linked on the right) - the Sergeant Beef books are both funny and very good mysteries, particularly the "Case for Three Detectives." I have "Dead Man's Shoes" on my list to be read and reviewed, probably in the new year.
Toggle Commented Dec 2, 2014 on More E-books Today Only! at Classic Mysteries
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As I say, Margot, it's out of my usual comfort zone - but I thoroughly enjoyed it anyway!
Toggle Commented Dec 1, 2014 on "A Coffin for Dimitrios" at Classic Mysteries
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Sergio points out that today is the anniversary of Carr's birth - 108 years ago today. Happy birthday, JDC!
Toggle Commented Nov 30, 2014 on A Ride in the Carr at Classic Mysteries
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There are a few Carrs - mostly from his later writing - that aren't as good. But you're right, there are easily another 20 worth reading beyond these.
Toggle Commented Nov 30, 2014 on A Ride in the Carr at Classic Mysteries
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British crime writer Mike Ripley has contributed a personal reminiscence and an obituary for P. D. James in the Shots eZine that is very much worth your reading time. http://wwwshotsmagcouk.blogspot.co.uk/2014/11/p-d-james-1920-2014-personal.html
Toggle Commented Nov 29, 2014 on P. D. James at Classic Mysteries
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I can't think of very many non-murder plots off-hand, Margot. I guess, murder being the ultimate crime, that's what most readers want. But it's good to read something like The Red Thumb Mark to see how interesting a mystery without a murder can be.
Toggle Commented Nov 24, 2014 on "The Red Thumb Mark" at Classic Mysteries
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You're welcome, Bev. I learned a good deal from the panelists. I'm looking forward to trying the new names on the list - noting that one is from France and the other from Japan!
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Thanks, Margot. I think this is one of her best thrillers.
Toggle Commented Nov 17, 2014 on "Look to the Lady" at Classic Mysteries
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I think I do remember the movie, Yvette - wasn't that the one shot in first person (the only time you see Robert Montgomery's (I think) face is in a mirror? Little Sister is more intense in some ways - worth re-reading!
Toggle Commented Nov 15, 2014 on "The Little Sister" at Classic Mysteries
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Yvette, there are so many books that most of us ship them home - UPS or FEDex usually set up shop in the hotel for us. You're missed. Gotta get to one of these, you know!
Toggle Commented Nov 15, 2014 on We're Here... at Classic Mysteries
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Gardner was a good plotter, Margot. I haven't read nearly enough to make many judgments, but the ones I have read have been quite cleverly done. This one, in particular, is most ingenious in showing how the crime really happened (as opposed to the way it was set up to look).
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John, that's why I linked to your review so my readers could get a second opinion. I agree with you - the department store setting is excellent. I'm willing to admit I may just have had a bad morning, or a stomach ache, or whatever - it just didn't seem to recover from what I felt was a major plot failing. Your mileage obviously may vary! :-)
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Margot, it's still fun to walk around the flagship Macy's store on Herald Square in Manhattan, which is still said to be the largest store in the world - I seem to recall there are up to 11 sales floors and the building fills a complete city block. As for believability, as I said in the post, don't necessarily rely on me - I'd suggest you check out that link to the review on the Pretty Sinister blog, as he seems to have enjoyed the book far more than I did.
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Glad you enjoyed him. Folks, you can read Tom Cat's new review of Upfield's "The Bone Is Pointed" at http://moonlight-detective.blogspot.com/2014/10/the-shadow-of-civilization.html#comment-form_4637919498370790143
Toggle Commented Oct 19, 2014 on Bony's Back! at Classic Mysteries
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Thanks for the kind words, Joan, and I'm glad you enjoy the blog and podcasts. I don't think I've read Above Suspicion; I believe The Watersplash is in my ever-growing TBR pile. Be forewarned that there's a fair amount of gore in The Egyptian Cross Mystery, though the violence remains offstage. I hope you'll enjoy it.
Toggle Commented Oct 7, 2014 on "The Egyptian Cross Mystery" at Classic Mysteries
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You'll be missed, Yvette. One of these days, the conference will be close enough to where you live for you to attend - I think you'd love it!
Toggle Commented Oct 2, 2014 on The Bouchercon 2014 Lineup at Classic Mysteries
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It's worth noting that Chief Inspector Hemingway, Yvette, started out in earlier books as SERGEANT Hemingway, working with DCI Hannasyde. Another H indeed!
Toggle Commented Oct 2, 2014 on "Detection Unlimited" at Classic Mysteries
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Bev, as I said, this is by far the most farcical of any of the Carr novels - even more so than some of the H.M. books. I agree it's overdone. And I think it's more Three Stooges even than Scooby Doo...assaulting the captain with bug spray? But the mystery is so cleverly done, the impossible situation so clearly laid out, that I still enjoy rereading it.
Toggle Commented Sep 22, 2014 on "The Blind Barber" at Classic Mysteries
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Margot, this one is so purely armchair detective, too - Fell literally solves it by listening to an account of what happened and spotting the clues. My edition, in fact, contains footnotes at the end referring you to the page on which a particular clue was given. Now THAT's rubbing your nose in it!
Toggle Commented Sep 22, 2014 on "The Blind Barber" at Classic Mysteries
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I must admit I've enjoyed what I've read of hers - haven't read My Kingdom for a Hearse, but I did enjoy The Corpse Steps Out. There are some nice plot twists in 8 Faces at 3; it's probably worth another try.
Toggle Commented Sep 19, 2014 on "8 Faces at 3" at Classic Mysteries
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Bev, I blush to admit that I haven't read them all either. So far, of the ones I HAVE read, this is certainly one of the better ones!
Toggle Commented Sep 19, 2014 on "The Kennel Murder Case" at Classic Mysteries
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Rebecca, I'm sure you would enjoy it, but California is a long way from the UK. Bouchercon is back on the east coast next year (Raleigh, North Carolina), and there is a fairly large contingent traveling from the UK to the conference every year - it would be great if you could come along one year!
Toggle Commented Sep 14, 2014 on Bouchercon Assignments at Classic Mysteries
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Bev, I think the Wolfe-Goodwin partnership really hits its stride in this one. I'm glad you like it as well.
Toggle Commented Sep 8, 2014 on "Too Many Cooks" at Classic Mysteries
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