Dead man’s chest – a book review

Author: Kerry Greenwood

Title: Dead man’s chest

Have you ever read any books by Kerry Greenwood? If not, well, I would strongly recommend you to start with Phryne Fisher.

Phryne Fisher is a private detective, but it’s not your normal sort of detective. Really, I think it’s more about a character than a detective. Miss Fisher is sexy, witty, compassionate, intelligent and very wealthy and even has a title. She loves good champagne and wine, and drives like the wind on her Hispano-Suiza. Set in 1920s and 1930s in St Kilda, Melbourne, this quirky female character has developed throughout the series into the 17th book, Dead man’s chest.

This time, Phryne Fisher goes to Queenscliff for a holiday. Upon arrival, she finds the house is empty, the butler, Mr Johnson and his wife, have gone missing. What’s more surprising, is that all the food is gone as well as some of the furniture, but not valuable painting. So what’s happened to them? Meanwhile girls are scared by a hair ghost who appears on the street whistling away their hair braids.  

Phryne saves a fisherboy from a gang of four, and she went to have drinks with a group of surrealists on the other side of her house to have fun. Is this the way that Miss Fisher finds the butler and his wife, or solves crime? Will Miss Fisher and her companion Dot and her adopted daughters have a good holiday? As usual, there is always plenty recipes, drinks and fashion for taste in Phryne.

Greenwood displays her ability of writing vivid scenes and local history through out Phryne’s adventures.  Kerry Greenwood a Melbourne based writer, has also written a contemporary series of another female detective, Corinna Chapman, set in Melbourne. In her slightly tongue in cheek style, Greenwood writes beautifully and also plots well which makes this reading delightful. 

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