Craig L. Adams

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Craig L. Adams

Craig L. Adams’s book reviews

This is an enjoyable old Locked Room mystery puzzle. The story becomes increasingly puzzling as it moves along. There are two locked room murders, a main suspect (who is also the main character) who cannot remember what he was doing the night of the murder, and suggestions of supernatural activity. I'd tell more, but I don't want to spoil it. Everything is explained in the last chapter. Recommended.
03/26/2010
This is a great piece of 1930s British pulp fiction. It is a supernatural detective story featuring the very likable Gregory George Gordon Green — known to his friends as "Gees." I liked the way the author evoked the lonely, rural Cumberland setting. I also liked the way the author worked distinctively British folklore into the story. I found the characters interesting and engaging. However, there is no real mystery here: once the reader is willing to admit the possibility of the supernatural, it becomes quite obvious what is happening and where the whole book is heading. But, the author is a great storyteller, since he manages to keep the whole thing interesting and moving along at a nice pace. This is a fun read.
03/17/2010
The was the first of Green's mystery novels to be published and it was quite popular in it's day. It only holds up fairly well. The early chapters depict an old fashioned coroner's inquest, held in the home of the deceased. The book is about the dangers of circumstantial evidence, as the investigation seems to point one way, then another, only to have the real truth turn out to be something else. I thought the romance was rather unsatisfying. Some readers may find this to be a little overly long. But, I found that it held my interest all the way through. It's a very good first effort for Anna Katharine Green, and an introduction to her series character, Mr. Gryce.
03/03/2010
A good early locked room mystery, written in a very humorous, satirical style. The author had an interest in the social issues of his day. Recommended.
02/15/2010
If you are looking for some light entertainment, this book might fill the bill. This is a fast moving, action packed adventure. It features heroic, handsome, brilliant, fearless smarty-pants barrister-amateur detective Simon Brett. (Tracy assures us that Brett is the greatest amateur detective of his generation.) The book moves along at a quick pace as Brett and his friends chase diamond thieves in Europe. This is not a great mystery, or a great book in any sense, but it is fun. And, by the end of the book I found I kind of liked Simon Brett - in spite of myself.
02/15/2010
This book does not belong in the Mystery/Crime category. It belongs in Humor/Satire. Various historical figures travel in a houseboat down the Styx and have several comic encounters. Shakespeare has to defend the authorship of his plays, Dr. Johnson is being shadowed everywhere he goes by Boswell, Demosthenes needs to put pebbles in his mouth to speak clearly, etc., etc. This book has no plot. But, some readers may find it to be an amusing diversion.
02/13/2010
This old horror novel holds up pretty well. It was published in the same year as Bram Stoker's Dracula and was more popular in its day. A British politician is being stalked by a weird man/woman/beetle creature. The story is told from several different points of view. There is a strong heroine character. It is quite readable and moves along well. It's a pretty good book, but the ending is disappointing. Recommended nonetheless.
02/12/2010
This is a great old mystery novel. The investigation is really interesting. The story itself is tragic. Anna Katharine Green was very good in telling stories of police investigation that do not bore or loose the reader's interest. Gryce is insightful but not infallible. Modern readers should be warned: there is a section toward the end that tells the back story. Old mysteries sometimes had this, and it's common in Green's books, though modern readers will find this annoying. (Remember Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlet and The Valley of Fear.)Nevertheless, this is an excellent old mystery book that I recommend very highly.
02/12/2010
This book is quite melodramatic and the investigation is pretty straightforward. I think this is the second book of Green's that was published. it is not among her best.
02/12/2010