I received an e-version of Murder and More by Gerald Darnell for review.
Murder and More is the fourteenth installment in the Carson Reno Mystery Series. No, I haven't read the first thirteen, but after reading this entry, I don't think I would mind. It didn't seem to put me behind by not having read the first books, this story was pretty well self contained. Murder and More was a fun read.
I don't read a lot of mysteries usually, but the hard-boiled, or noir genre does catch my interest. Murder and More did not disappoint, I could hear the bluesy-jazz music in my mind while reading the story.
There were sleazy bad guys, extremely hot women, hard drinking, cool cars and twists and turns leading to the conclusion. As I said I don't read a lot of these type books, so I don't know the usual conventions. Murder and More was illustrated with pictures (not drawings) pertinent to the story. The picture of the scantily clad lady definitely caught my eye (a little cheesecake is not a bad thing). There were pictures of businesses mentioned in the book and pictures of cool classic cars (again not a bad thing). This did make the book more fun.
It was fun reading about the way the private eyes "investigated", mostly letting things develop with out there intervention, but still making enemies of every bad guy in the area. Of course, our hero Carson Reno ties it all up neatly in the end (You think that is a spoiler? Reno has 14 books, he didn't get that many failing now did he?).
Murder and More does contain graphic violence, but only hinted at sex, just like the 50's and 60's true detective stories my mother used to read when I was a kid. The language wasn't bad, the whole reading experience was like being back in the 60's, not what would be written today. In those days you could have either sex or violence, but not both.
Which brings me to my biggest complaint about Murder and More, at one point we are teased with a hot female character wearing a bathing suit that would "stop traffic", did they have a picture of that? Nooo! We got a picture of a '57 caddy, nice car but come on!
All kidding aside, Murder and More, by Gerald Darnell is candy for the hard-boiled detective fan. Enjoy!