Reviews

Удача любить мертвих by Стівен Спотсвуд

ant_i_dot's review against another edition

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adventurous lighthearted relaxing medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

3.75

tamarant4's review against another edition

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adventurous mysterious tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

3.0

This city’s full of monsters, thieves, and assholes. And that’s just City Hall.” [loc. 3789]
First in a series of murder mysteries set in 1940s New York. Willowjean ('Will') Parker ran away to the circus as a teenager, and has accumulated a host of useful skills including lock-picking, highwire-walking and knife-throwing. The latter of these brings her to the attention of Ms Lillian Pentecost, 'the most famous woman detective in the city and possibly the country'. Ms P, as Will calls her, suffers from multiple sclerosis, and would like an assistant to aid in situations where her 'physical limitations' prove inconvenient. Will would like a roof over her head, worthwhile employment, and considerable freedom to live as she chooses.
Fortune Favours the Dead is an account of a classic locked-room murder. Socialite Abigail Collins was murdered at a Halloween party she was hosting: the murder weapon was a crystal ball, and Abigail was alone in the room after a seance in which fashionable spiritualist Ariel Belestrade apparently channelled the spirit of Abigail's husband, who'd committed suicide a year before. While investigating the crime, Will (who's bisexual) strikes up a relationship with the daughter of the murdered woman. Ms P is more interested in Ariel Belestrade, and how she works her con...
I like the way Will and Ms P complement one another: they're a detective duo comparable with Holmes and Watson, Wolfe and Archie, et cetera. And I like the way the novel handles queerness (Will's and Becca's, as well as a couple of other characters. ('Ms. Pentecost had never shown a romantic interest in anyone, man or woman.') There were a couple of ... not quite anachronisms, but details that I think people in 1945 would have reacted to with more surprise: Ms P's 'Ms', which indeed was in parlance, though it didn't come into general use until the 1970s; and a woman not drinking champagne at the party, thus revealing to Belestrade that she's pregnant). I don't think alcohol avoidance in pregnancy was common practice: see A Brief History of Awareness of the Link Between Alcohol and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.
But overall, great fun, and I liked the two protagonists very much: Will's pulp-inflected narration and Ms P's composure and dignity contrast very nicely. I'll probably read more in this series.
Fulfils the ‘locked room mystery’ rubric of the 52 books in 2024 challenge.

duparker's review against another edition

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4.0

This book does a great job of grabbing you at the onset and running. The atmosphere of post WWII New York is a great character for any book to inhabit. The fact that the leads were women, and women you could connect with, was a real bonus. Not sure I'd read the series, if this becomes one, but as a one off, it really held me.

katie_2711's review against another edition

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adventurous challenging emotional mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

mrz_owenz's review against another edition

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mysterious
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.5

emalynruth's review against another edition

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5.0

4.5, rounding up for Will Parker, the noir detective of my dreams

turrean's review against another edition

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adventurous mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? N/A
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0


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woods_corinne's review against another edition

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mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes

5.0

rmarcin's review against another edition

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5.0

This book was a ton of fun! I loved that it was set in the 1940s, adding to the aura of an old-fashioned detective novel. I enjoyed the quirky characters and the way the murder mystery was laid out for you to solve. I appreciated that the main characters are a bit flawed.
In the first novel in the series, we are introduced to Ms. Lillian Pentecost and Miss Willowjean Parker. Willowjean recounts the story of the Collins case, where a wealthy couple are both found dead, a year apart. Clairvoyants, family secrets, and a little romance all play a part in this entertaining novel. I look forward to book 2!

poorcate's review against another edition

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adventurous mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.25