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Perfect Murder Paperback – 2010

3.3 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Pan Books (2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330507850
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330507851
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 0.9 x 19.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 100 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #456,506 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I have always enjoyed Peter James. Most of his books have been great. But this one is fantastic. Very funny, great pace. Even when you think you know what's coming next, it's so delicious just to sit back and enjoy. Very highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book and it was a good story but it is really too short (just over 100 pages) to be classed as a novel and I think it should be thought of as a short story. I was very disappointed when I saw the length of it. Peter James never disappoints.
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Format: Paperback
Great read. I like his books.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very disappointing!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa4aa9030) out of 5 stars 31 reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4a28ce4) out of 5 stars Husband Plans to Murder His Wife, Unbeknownst to Him, She's Also Planning to Murder Him March 19 2011
By James N Simpson - Published on
Format: Paperback
When you start reading the back of the covers of the Quick Reads, The Perfect Murder is certainly one of the more, if not the most interesting back cover blurbs. It's by also one of the few quick reads, by big name already highly successful authors. The Perfect Murder started off well, it's basically the tale of a married for almost twenty years couple, who don't just not love each other anymore, but have come to resent each other. Both are disappointed their lives haven't turned out the way they thought they would and know if the other would just die, then they could live the life they always dreamed. Both are having affairs and want to live the rest of their lives with their new bedroom partner. So both make plans to murder the other, both know they have to be careful so as not to be caught. However only one can obviously be successful.

Unfortunately this, who will kill who interesting reading plot, is over pretty early on in the word count. I won't tell you who was successful but the quality of the story does drop a little when there's only one left. The stupidity of the characters lessens the enjoyment as you read thinking, as if you'd do that, no one could be that stupid. It's still a fun short read but doesn't maintain the very high quality and tension of the first few chapters all the way to the end.

The Perfect Murder is part of the Quick Reads series of books to increase literacy levels by encouraging those who don't like to read beyond magazines and comic books to try fiction through cheap priced short story length fiction and non fiction. Like a various author anthology collection novel, some of these individual short story books are really good, and others not that great.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4a28d38) out of 5 stars Almost the Perfect Murder May 9 2013
By Sylvia A. Kelso - Published on
Format: Paperback
After a 6-book attempt to get on terms with P. D. James, Inspector Ghote came as welcome relief. A human being! A person involved with other people and not ashamed of it! A person with so many neighbours he doesn't have time to worry about "privacy" - that word that jumps up every 6 pages or so in James. A detective with a family and best of all, a detective with a heart!
Whew! It was like leaving a dreary UK autumn day for a Delhi spring. Yeah, could be too hot and crowded eventually, but at least you thaw out first.
There is more than a slight hint of over-the-top comedy about *The Perfect Murder*, with its deliberately ambiguous title, its definitely over-the-top rhyming-slang - Hindu? he's certainly not Cockney - rich man Arun Varde, and the sub-plot Case of the Stolen Rupee (yes, just one rupee.) The link between the two cases is somewhat tenuous if finally vital, and the ongoing chaos at the Varde house also tends to the edge of credibility at times.
On the other hand,the power of money and the presence of corruption in Bombay come as no surprise, and the portrait of Varde's elder son with his exaggerated English argot feels as if it shd. strike maliciously home in a setting of post-British India. Then, too, the lyric scene when the monsoon and the case finally break together can seem, on reflection, just a tad too Indian, so to speak - one of those loces classici, like the sacred cows and the "brightly-clad women" that you wd. expect in any superficial treatment - but at the time, it's wonderfully cathartic, for the reader and Inspector Ghote both.

Which leads to the only real difficulty about Inspector Ghote, at least for me: for the first 9 Inspector Ghote books, Keating had never actually BEEN to Bombay.

Sure, he handles the inflections of Indian English as if he was born to them, not over-doing the flood of present participles, catching the wordiness nicely, sure, he adds in the odd Indian word - not sure if they are in Marathi or some other dialect, though Keating does know such exist - with the panache of an Amitav Ghosh. Sure, he has a convincing presentation up and down the strata of Bombay, from the street beggars to the magnificently miserly Minister's over-plush office, with a malicious side-look at "imported air-conditioning!" and such. And he treats all those strata with a democracy sadly lacking from P. D. James's apparently unconscious sieving of an English village into Those We Know and Those We Only Know About.
All the same, Keating is NOT an Indian. Like Alexander McCall, who wrote a very nicely defensive preface to my edition of *The Perfect Murder*, he is from a colonizing culture taking the voice of a culture that has been colonized. And yes, we shd. all let bygones be bygones. But if Australia had been colonized by, say, the US, (not that we aren't culturally colonized already) and some US writer decided to do a novel Down Among the Oz-ites, for the edification of those Not Down Among Same, taking on the language and outlook and setting of these (implicitly inferior)Others, as if he/she belonged there, how wd. I feel?
Not too damn friendly, I seem to think.
Keating does a Real Good Job of Bombay. It's wickedly alive, it's complex and dense and sloppy and vivid and Ghote himself is a treat. All the same, at times I had a sense of - exaggeration, for want of a better word, of stereotypic qualities, such as Indian volubility and "quaintness," especially in agitation. And a sense, which might have been wholly in my own view, that the writer, like the earlier writers of Children's Lit, is silently looking over his characters' heads to the (white Western) reader, and maybe not even consciously, asking, Oh, look at these excitable Orientals! Ain't they quaint?
It may be wholly unjust. In the wake of Kipling, who probably lived further into India than any outsider who ever wrote about the country, yet still could not shake off that white view at times, it wd. be hard for Keating NOT to have slid into such a stance. The theoretical question of his taking on an Indian's voice, however, did leave me putting 4 instead of 5 stars on Inspector Ghote's first appearance. Despite what McCall Smith says, I don't think even great works of fiction can wholly override the questions of who wrote them, about whom, and when.
Otherwise, kudos. And whyinhell aren't all the Inspector Ghote books on Kindle instead a mere handful, and the rest only on Audiobooks? Certainly a chance missed there with this reader, publishers.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4a2918c) out of 5 stars Meeting Ghote Oct. 21 2011
By Jack A. Wertheimer - Published on
Format: Paperback
I had read of H.R.F.Keating and anyone whose father had named him with the hope that he become an author was, at least, of interest. The Perfect Murder is an introduction to the police of India. While reading it you keep saying to yourself, yes; this rings true; I can imagine this kind of difficulty with this kind of person; I can see myself walking down this street sipping this sweet drink.

The difficulty with the book is probably my difficulty. I am moderately interested in someone who has conquered his own environment, especially if I'm familiar with it. When I'm not and I'm faced with a man who has shaped himself to live in strange surroundings in a strange way, the difficulties are large. I have to be sympathetic to the man, in this case Inspector Ghote, and although his work is police procedure and his young son and somewhat stereotypically shrewish (yet beautiful) wife have all his love, they didn't manage to capture all of mine -- even though I love police procedurals and 'complicated' women.

Neither did his foreign attachment, a brash, loud Scandinavian man from other police forces ostensibly learning India's ways and ultimately playing an integral part in the story.

The story itself revolves around a wealthy Indian entrepreneur and his secretary. How Ghote deals with them, and they with him, is the crux of the plot. It is well presented as are all elements of the book, but the elements don't seem to fuse well. There I was in India, walking the streets, talking the talk, but not living the life. How can I make it clearer? I still read everything from English detective fiction to American fantasy, to Booker prize winners to nineteenth century novels of manners -- or not -- all with great joy. Inspector Ghote doesn't fit me, I'm afraid.

Who does? Let me just throw out Connie Willis and Jane Austen. Worlds apart, but oh, those worlds.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4a2954c) out of 5 stars Who will murder whom first? March 8 2012
By Lance Mitchell - Published on
Format: Paperback
A married couple, Victor and Joan, have grown apart over the years. They have become bored with each other and have sought, and found, extra-marital stimuli. Each plans to murder the other so that they can begin new lives with their respective lovers. The planning is meticulous. It has to be to fall in line with the book's title, The Perfect Murder.

The big question, right from the very beginning, is who will succeed in murdering the other first? Or will the murders be so perfect that they occur simultaneously.

To find out the answer to that question, and many others that this story raises, you'll just have to invest an hour of your time to read it.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4a29630) out of 5 stars "If people would only behave in a simple, reasonable, logical way, " sighed Inspector Ghote Feb. 11 2013
By Fiat Lux - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is, of course, not the story of the "perfect" murder from a criminological perspective, but of the murder of Mr. Perfect.

And the characters - Inspector Ganesh Ghote of the Bombay (now Mumbai) Police, his long suffering yet shrewish wife Pratima, Axel Svenson, the Swedish analyst, the corpulent Lala Heera Lal (brilliantly portrayed in the movie version of the book by the late Amjad Khan), Ghote's bureaucratic boss A.C.P. Samant -- they are all certainly well-characterized portrayals but the real jewel in the crown here is Bombay itself, the city of dreams shimmering in the subcontinental heat, punctuated by torrential monsoon downpours.

Interestingly, H.R.F.Keating had never set foot in Bombay when he wrote "The Perfect murder" but unlike the Africa of Edgar Rice Burroughs, or the Texas of J.T.Edson (other authors who neglected to visit the backdrop of their novels), the Bombay portrayed by Keating pulsates with a realism that lifts this book from the mundane whodunit to a truly classic literary work of the 1960s. And I can say this with perfect certitude because, much like Keating, I too have never visited Bombay, unless you count the time I flew via Sahar (now Chhatrapati Shivaji) International Airport from Madras (now Chennai) to Heathrow (now Heathrow).

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