Stagestruck – Peter Lovesey

Setting: Bath, England.

Story: Clarion Calhoun, thirty something former pop star, seeks to relaunch herself as an actor on the stage, but her debut ends abruptly with accusations of sabotage and culpability. It’s not really a police matter, but Inspector Diamond starts to sniff around, and soon there’s some serious crime to be sorted out.

Good Stuff: This is an old style (Agatha Christie like) mystery, recounted in genteel prose with just the occasional lapse into profanity and vulgarity. The mystery aspect is excellent, and the plot well put together. Inspector Diamond is just enough of an interesting character to carry the story through to the end.  The stage setting is a good one.

Not So Good Stuff: Too many times the Show don’t tell guideline is broken, artlessly. The bulk of the characters are disposable and lifeless.

Score: 6/10

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