Tag: Kerry Greenwood

Review – The Green Mill Murder

Posted November 19, 2015 by Nikki in Reviews / 0 Comments

Cover of Green Mill Murder by Kerry GreenwoodThe Green Mill Murder, Kerry Greenwood

This is what, by now, counts as a fairly typical story for Phryne, featuring two different lovers, some acts of derring-do, and little glimpses of the found-family going on with Ruth, Jane, Bert, Cec, the Butlers, Dot, and Phryne. Oh, and some very unpleasant people in society. Actually, I would quite like to see Phryne getting on with some people that she doesn’t want to sleep with and doesn’t despise, in her own social class… not that social class matters much to her; it just feels like a gap.

The mystery itself is a bit odd, in this one: it’s not really about finding the murderer, just about proving someone innocent. Even though, in this instance, there was a murderer. I dislike the attitude in some detective novels where the person who dies is an awful person, so the detective doesn’t really want to find out who did it. You can’t run a business by deciding who you like and who you don’t — and murder isn’t any more acceptable when the dead person is not likeable.

This book does include a few queer characters, very openly; it’s mostly dealt with casually, with pity for the situation they’re in and acceptance on Phryne’s part. But. Do they have to be stereotypes? Sigh.

It also contains a wombat character, who is epic, and some really gorgeous descriptions of flying and the Australian outback. So… swings and roundabouts.

I gather the TV show handles this one quite differently, and it’s the next one I have to watch, so that should be interesting.

Rating: 4/5

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Review – Death at Victoria Dock

Posted November 15, 2015 by Nikki in Reviews / 2 Comments

Cover of Death at Victoria Dock by Kerry GreenwoodDeath at Victoria Dock, Kerry Greenwood

If you were under the impression that Phryne is unfeeling, that her lovers mean nothing to her, this one should thoroughly disabuse you of that notion. I don’t know how you could be under that illusion after the anger she feels about the people hurting Sasha in Cocaine Blues, or the way she protects Jane and Ruth, but still. The story opens with a young man dying in her arms and that injustice drives the story, through Phryne’s anger.

The story itself is a whole world away from what I’m used to/know about, in terms of date, setting and politics, so I mostly just let it carry me. I love, though, that Phryne has loyal friends in the chance-met Bert and Cec, in Dot and in her adopted daughters. It’s a found family thing, which I always love.

In a way, the books don’t really bring anything new. There doesn’t seem to be an overarching plot, and Phryne isn’t changing, really. But it’s still so refreshing to have her so capable, so independent (but not infallible, not invulnerable, as this book particularly shows us) that I can’t stop reading them.

Rating: 4/5

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Review – Murder on the Ballarat Train

Posted November 9, 2015 by Nikki in Reviews / 0 Comments

Cover of Murder on the Ballarat Train by Kerry GreenwoodMurder on the Ballarat Train, Kerry Greenwood

Another fun outing with Phryne! This one ends with her adopting a couple of girls and goes through a bunch of stuff — a crime on a train, hypnotism, murder for an inheritance, mad criminals, etc. I’m not a fan of stories where the criminal turns out to be insane, even though it’s a classic: most crime is carried out by sane people, or certainly people whose mental disorders are not central to the deed. In fact, in the real world, it’s more common for a mentally ill person to be a victim of violence than the perpetrator. It doesn’t help that the whole hypnotism thing is a little too convenient — the hypnotist can get away with just about anything using hypnotism, here.

Still, it’s fun, and I love the found-family stuff at the end. I did predict some turns of the plot, but that’s not really what I’m reading this for anyway.

I don’t think Phryne has had the same lover in any of these books so far, either. I love that there seems to be no drive for her to change her ways, in the story: she’s a flapper, she’s Phryne, and people have to accept that. Don’t get attached to any of her young men!

Rating: 4/5

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Review – Flying Too High

Posted November 5, 2015 by Nikki in Reviews / 0 Comments

Cover of Flying Too High by Kerry GreenwoodFlying Too High, Kerry Greenwood

Pretty much binging on this series at the moment, I have to admit. As I write up this review, I’m already two books ahead. I find the books so readable, and since each one has clocked in under 200 pages so far, they’re not a huge time investment. Phryne is a lovely character: independent, smart, fearless, honest and true to her own principles — and non-judgemental of others.

I don’t really have much to say about the plots: these books remind me of Sayers’ mysteries, where what I care about is more the characters and how they deal with the situation. Phryne is a little too good to be true, but I want to see what she does anyway. She has a spark and a love of life that animates the novels for me. I hear Essie Davis does a great job with the character in the series, so I’m quite excited to get round to it on Netflix. Just… you know… me being me, excitement still might mean it takes me another year to get to. (Sorry, Charlie Cox-as-Daredevil.)

Rating: 4/5

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Stacking the Shelves

Posted October 31, 2015 by Nikki in General / 15 Comments

Totally unsurprisingly, this week has involved me grabbing as much Phryne Fisher as I can… I even started watching the TV series, via Netflix. Gah, love it so much.

Library books

Cover of Blood and Circuses by Kerry Greenwood Cover of Ruddy Gore by Kerry Greenwood Cover of Urn Burial by Kerry Greenwood

Cover of Raisins and Almonds by Kerry Greenwood Cover of Death Before Wicket by Kerry Greenwood

Cover of Away With the Fairies by Kerry Greenwood Cover of The Last Enchantment by Mary Stewart

And I actually got some Amazon vouchers, but I’m probably going to save them for some more Phryne book. Just one book purchased, and that was a Kindle Daily Deal.

Cover of Omens by Kelley Armstrong

So really, I’ve been quite good this week! What’s everyone else been getting?

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Review – Miss Phryne Fisher Investigates

Posted October 29, 2015 by Nikki in Reviews / 4 Comments

Cover of Miss Phryne Fisher Investigates by Kerry GreenwoodMiss Phryne Fisher Investigates, Kerry Greenwood

Aka Cocaine Blues. I did actually try to read this once before, and really didn’t get into it — I don’t think I read more than a couple of chapters. Looking at that review now, I think I must’ve been really cranky that day, because all I complained about was adjectives. Which, yes, are present… but not nearly as bad as I seemed to think back then. Perhaps a case of finding the right book at the right time, because reading this during the readathon, I loved it!

Even the first time, I was impressed by Phryne’s character: the fact that she’s a flapper, that she’s independent, clever, capable. This time through, I also noticed her kindness a lot: her treatment of Dot, her concern about other people. She’s also a shrewd judge of character. In fact, there’s very little we see by way of flaws in Phryne, which could get annoying… but for now, I just loved the amount of agency she has, the strength she has, the fact that she’s unequivocally a sexual person and nobody can take advantage of her because she owns that fact.

The mysteries were kind of secondary to that for me; they come together well, though, and give us a varied cast. Nobody is involved in everything, but each person has ties to the next. I quite liked that.

If it’s any measure of my enthusiasm, I immediately ordered the second book (in time for it to be delivered — and pounced on — the next morning by Amazon Prime, on a Sunday!) and reserved more from the library.

Rating: 4/5

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Stacking the Shelves

Posted October 24, 2015 by Nikki in General / 13 Comments

Hello, everyone! Thanks for the good wishes last week — my grandmother’s operation went okay, and she seems quite well, all things considered. Hope you’ve all had good weeks too!

Bought

Cover of Murder Past Due by Miranda James Bitch Planet vol 1

Cover of Miss Phryne Fisher Investigates by Kerry Greenwood Cover of Flying Too High by Kerry Greenwood Cover of Murder on the Ballarat Train by Kerry Greenwood

Cover of Magic Rises by Ilona Andrews Cover of Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews

Suddenly, I’m mad about Phryne Fisher. Even considering watching the series, if it’s on the UK Netflix! I’ve read a bunch of these already.

Library

Cover of Death at Victoria Dock by Kerry Greenwood Cover of Green Mill Murder by Kerry Greenwood

Yes. Uh. As I said.

Comics

Shield #1

I’ve been looking forward to this one since I first heard about it!

What’s everyone else been getting?

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