Customer Review

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A theatrical start to the series but no standing ovation, 10 Jan. 2014
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This review is from: Full Dark House: (Bryant & May Book 1) (Paperback)
Although the beginning blasts you into the lives of Bryant and May, I was disappointed that I didn't find 'Full Dark House' more enjoyable. I bought it after seeing reviews (for the latest book in the series) on ITV's Crime Club and it's quirkiness sold it to me.
A pair of Octogenarian detectives who as the (not quite dynamic) duo Bryant and May, share their names with a famous brand of matches; a branch of the Met called 'The Peculiar Crimes Unit' and some subtle, tongue in cheek humour.

I liked:
* Arthur Bryant and John May's relationship. "Why can't you be like regular old people and put irresponsibility behind you?" (p.403) Anyone who is considered 'old' and irresponsible sounds like fun to be around!!
* The WWII setting for the story (alongside the present day) which has descriptive and emotive scenes of blitzed London.
* An interesting sprinkling of facts, such as the killing of London Zoo's poisonous snakes during the war in case the zoo was bombed and they escaped!

The deaths all take place in the Palace Theatre, and include some imaginative demises. Using an old theatre as a murder setting there are plenty of hiding places, dark rows of stalls (a Full Dark House)and machinery to sabotage. There was no Scooby Doo janitor to unmask but as always in a mystery, the characters are not always what they seem.
Unfortunately I found it a bit draggy in places and had to re-read paragraphs at times, but because I like the premise and I was only able to read in snatches (and some books really do benefit from longer absorption in a story) I wouldn't rule out trying another from this series.
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4.0 out of 5 stars (80 customer reviews)
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Reviewer

Helen Simpson
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Location: Leeds, England

Top Reviewer Ranking: 8,162