Book: Death of a Pirate King
Author: Josh Lanyon
Spoiler level: low, unless you didn't read The Hell You Say, reviewed here. Even then, the spoiler level is low.
Gasp!! I just want to say this book is delicious and exquisite so far. I'm reading it slowly because I don't want it to ever end.
It was not my kind of party.The mystery all starts when Porter Jones, this Hollywood mogul that the main character Adrien is talking to, starts twitching and spitting soup out his mouth, and nobody can tell if he's laughing or what.
Sure, some people might think the dead guy made it my kind of party, but that woudn't be a fair assessment of my entertainment needs - or my social calendar.
"Was it something you said, Adrien?" Paul Kane, our host, joked to me. He rose as though to better study Jones. He had one of those British public school accents that make insignificant comments like Would you pass the butter sound as interesting as Fire when ready!But then Jones keels over and it is soon clear he has been poisoned. A lot of people comment on Lanyon's humor, and I heartily agree he's one of the best humorists out there, but he's also a fantastic stage manager of his action. I love the way he has Jake Riordan, the man who broke Adrien's heart two years ago, enter in this scene a page later:
They kept us waiting for probably another forty minutes, and then the doors to the drawing room opened silently on well-oiled hinges, and two cops in suits walked in. One was about thirty, Hispanic, with the tightly coiled energy of the ambitious young dick, and the other was Jake Riordan.I love everything about this paragraph. The doors opening silently - two doors, not one. The well-oiled hinges. Everybody waiting. The young cop, and then Jake. All the details frame the appearance of Jake in a way that blew my mind. I think a lesser writer might have put Jake in the beginning of this paragraph and sort of trumpeted around him with words, but Lanyon drops him at the end like a depth charge. Bang!
In a way, this book contains two mysteries: a murder mystery and a romantic mystery (at least that's what it looks like now; I'm only on page 98). Adrien gets corralled into sleuthing, and as the clues in the murder mystery begin to accumulate, Adrien slowly learns new things about Jake and his break-up and Jake's state of mind about it, then and now. Oh, this book is so good.
NOTE: this was originally sandwiched in the post below between two unrelated topics, so for blog searching ease, I broke them apart. So this post has been commented on below. But feel free to comment on it here now.