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The Black Cat: A Richard Jury Mystery [Hardcover]

Martha Grimes
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
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Book Description

April 6 2010 Richard Jury Mysteries

The inimitable Richard Jury returns in a thrilling tale of mystery, madness, and mistaken identity

Three months have passed since Richard Jury was left bereft and guilt- ridden after his lover's tragic auto accident, and he is now more wary than ever. He is deeply suspicious when requested on a case far out of his jurisdiction in an outlying village where a young woman has been murdered behind the local pub. The only witness is the establishment's black cat, who gives neither crook nor clue as to the girl's identity or her killer's.

Identifying the girl becomes tricky when she's recognized as both the shy local librarian and a posh city escort, and Jury must use all his wits and intuition to determine the connection to subse­quent escort murders. Meanwhile, Jury's nemesis, Harry Johnson, continues to goad Jury down a dangerous path. And Johnson, along with the imperturbable dog Mungo, just may be the key to it all.

Written with Martha Grimes's trademark insight and grace, The Black Cat signals the thrilling return of her greatest character. The superintendent is a man possessed of prodigious analytical gifts and charm, yet vulnerable in the most perplexing ways.

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About the Author

Martha Grimes is the bestselling author of eighteen Richard Jury mysteries and also the acclaimed fiction Foul Matter, Cold Flat Junction, Hotel Paradise, The End of the Pier, and The Train Now Departing.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Martha Grimes mystery. Sept. 18 2013
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Martha Grimes is a master of setting a scene and writes colourful descriptions which make a reader feel they are part of the setting. Her way with words is so original - makes me think twice before using over-used cliches. Most of all, her characters are quirky individuals, for the most part, that make me dread finishing the book and leaving them all for a little while till I purchase my next Grimes mystery. I am a captivated fan of the Richard Jury Mystery series and The Black Cat is one of the best.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Black cat April 14 2013
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I love Martha Grimes and I think I have read all the Richard Jury Novels. This is one of the best. Highly enjoyable
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing May 1 2010
I found this book disappointing. Had the feeling Grimes is tiring. The chapters done from the perspective of a dog and cat were neither interesting nor clever. They also made progress of the plot dubious. And the involvement of the baddie from the two previous Jury books was pointless except to keep the character going. I certainly won't buy the next one in hardbound and may not bother with the eventual paperback.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Definitely not the cat's meow July 19 2010
Other reviewers have already touched on some of the serious flaws in this latest in the series of Richard Jury novels. First among the absurdities are the chapters - yes, more than one - where the dialogue is among dogs and cats and which do nothing to advance the story at all. Second, the plot base is stolen from a Hitchcock movie based on a Patricia Highsmith novel. Raymond Chandler wrote the first draft of the sceenplay even though he thought the plot was wildly improbable - he was right.

Third the novel is rife with pointless vignettes and subplots inserted simply to keep certain characters "active" and ready to turn on in future works. There are other plot premises such as an aunt failing even to recognise her dead niece which stretch credibility beyond reasonable limits.

If you want to be able to namedrop famous and expensive shoe designers, or read scant references to other Hitchcock films which permeate this work, then good on you and tally ho. If however, you are looking for the tightly woven intricate material so characteristic of Martha Grimes' earlier work in this series, then, like me, you might be quite disappointed.

Another reviewer alludes to the death of Ms. Grimes cat; still another to a decline in her writing quality. It remains to be seen, but I too will wait for a library version of her next novel as this one isn't worth the price of admission, even on discounted theatre Tuesdays.
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