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Archive for the ‘detectives’ Category

Half-Moon InvestigationsHalf-Moon Investigations by Eoin Colfer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was looking for some light-hearted stuff to read after a huge dose of books with lots of serial killers and blood. From Eoin Colfer’s other books I have read (love the Artemis Fowl series), I knew I wasn’t going to get disappointed. And boy, did this book deliver or what.

This is a story of 12-year old detective, who thinks he has seen all the cases a school playground can throw at him. But then, his own boasts about being a detective get him involved in a case against the biggest criminals in the school. And before he knows it, the case has developed into something huge, and he is a fugitive from the law he has helped uphold so many times before. And soon, he is not the only person who is getting injured.

Femme fatale, a huge conspiracy, a scary criminal family and a hardboiled, world-weary protagonist… what more does a detective story need?

If you want a one line review: Why exactly hasn’t this been made into a crime noire film yet? I mean, you can almost hear the saxophone in the background while reading, and it’s not that hard to imagine all the characters wearing hats either.

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heat wave We have seen TV series based on books (too many to list), books based on TV series (Doctor Who, Monk etc.). But “Heat Wave ” by “Richard Castle” has a curious story – it is probably the first real-life book written by a character in a TV series.

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Sherlock Holmes poster As a Sherlock Holmes fan, I was justifiably scared about watching the movie based on what the trailer promised (at least, that’s how I am justifying me watching the movie so late). Then again, as a fan, I could hardly stay away from the movie, can I?

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Improbable Adventures An anthology of Sherlock Holmes stories (Point 1). Written by authors like Neil Gaiman, Laurie King, Stephan King, Naomi Novik, Stephan Baxter (Points 2, 3, 4, and so on.) So, how many more points does a book like “The Improbable Adventures of Sherlock Holmes ”need to be “pick up right now”?

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Holmes of The Opera

canarytrainer The Great Hiatus of Holmes’ life has always been a source of endless speculation, and inspiration to authors. “The Canary Trainer ” by Nicholas Meyer (published as ‘a lost manuscript by John H. Watson, M.D.’) is third in the series of his books explaining the absence of Holmes from his homeland.

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soul_of_steelIf asked which one person we would have liked to see again, true Holmesians would vote for Irene Norton née Adler with a huge majority, if not by an unanimous vote. A Soul of Steel by Carole Nelson Douglas is a novel from her Irene Adler series which tries to fulfill that fantasy.

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We all know Isaac Asimov as the father of Three (sorry, Four) Laws of Robotics and the creator of the two Foundations, but he also created one of the most memorable groups of amateur detectives, The Black Widowers.

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The Mirror CrackdChronologically, I guess “The Mirror Crack’d” by Agatha Christie is one of the last few cases of Miss Marple.

Old and frail (yet sharp as ever), she is watching the world around her (and St. Mary Mead in particular) change with times. The village is all buzzing because a famous actress Marina Gregg and her director husband, Jason Rudd have taken residence in the Gossington Hall. But when the hall is opened for visitors for a fete, Heather Badcock, a local fan of Marina Gregg is poisoned in the private party for local VIPs.

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Intrepid Lady Sleuth

No series on detectives will be complete without a review of lady detectives. Or at least, I thought so…

But, when I started searching for lady detectives in Indian fiction, I found a veritable dearth of them. Despite real life examples like Kiran Bedi and reel-life examples like “Udaan” (my recollections of which are very hazy, except that it was a nice serial), lady sleuths in mainstream Indian literature are very rare to find. Of course, so are sleuth’s ladies (only Byomkesh’ Satyaboti and Bahadur’s Bela come to mind), but that’s for another article.

That’s why there is no plural in the title…

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(and I don’t mean comical as in funny)

Try as I may, I cannot find any detectives in Indian comics. I mean, some (all?) of the Feluda stories was made into comics, and Fa Fe found his way into animated format via Tinkle, while we have a plethora of crime-fighters. But there are no detectives solely created for comics.

So , I am going to take this opportunity to talk about some crimefighters who don’t really make it into a Superhero grade, but are beyond your normal comics-guy-next-door.
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