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Friday, November 08, 2002

Book review: A Dangerous Thing by Josh Lanyon.

As I mentioned in my review of Lanyon’s first Adrien English book, Fatal Shadows, I usually don’t like mystery novels. But some of them are both witty and exciting, focusing on character development more than the actual crimes. A Dangerous Thing provides a good example of that.

Adrien’s thoughts in response to the other characters often differ from what he really says; otherwise, he would find himself in even more trouble! He is a sarcastic individual, but still lovable!

As with the first novel in this series, Adrien’s passion for writing and for mystery books tie in with the plot. And homophobia again complicates that plot. When this murder investigation begins, he’s in love with a closeted and obviously self-loathing cop, and surrounded by bigoted local law enforcement. Adrien’s health problems make matters worse, along with the fact that he has been accused of murder before.

While I loved Fatal Shadows, I think Lanyon has matured even more as a writer. His prose breezes by, never allowing readers to slow down, but also making them not want to slow down. He describes scenes in intricate details when needed, without boring readers with unneeded details. Also, his knowledge of his genre works smoothly into Adrien’s character, helping Adrien solve the mystery.

This novel should please fans of Fatal Shadows, while also winning Lanyon new readers!

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I’ll have several more reviews over the next few weeks, including a review of a rather long book I’ve just started reading: Everything You Always Wanted to Know About POD Publishing But Didn't Know Who to Ask!!! John F. Harnish wrote that book about print on demanding publishing, how it works, and how it is changing the book market.