Tag Archive for Melbourne

The Portrait of Molly Dean

The Portrait of Molly Dean by Katherine Kovacic (Bonnier, 2018); audiobook read by Casey Withoos (Wavesound, 2020) What would have been a hardboiled detective story in 1930s Melbourne (the setting of the murder) turns to a more cosy mystery in 1999 (when art dealer Alex Clayton attempts to solve it). Kovacic’s easy narrative style cannot quite bridge the disparity.  …

Cocaine Blues

Cocaine Blues by Kerry Greenwood (McPhee Gribble, 1989); audiobook read by Stephanie Daniel (Bolinda, 2010) Greenwood evinces as no-nonsense an approach to plotting as does the irrepressible Phryne Fisher to solving mysteries and bucking societal norms. The result is a fast-moving romp through 1920s Melbourne, more worldly than Wodehouse but with a similarly delightful turn of phrase.    

St Kilda Blues

St Kilda Blues by Geoffrey McGeachin (Penguin, 2014); audiobook read by David Tredinnick (Playaway, 2014) Though the investigation itself is commonplace, McGeachin immerses his protagonist in the details of history, presenting a time capsule of Australian—in particular, Melburnian—culture in the late 1960s. Stolid ex-WWII bomber pilot Charlie Berlin shows mettle worthy of the character study.