Saturday, 8 July 2017

Ten Dead Comedians: A Murder Mystery by Fred Van Lente

Ten Dead Comedians: A Murder MysteryTen Dead Comedians: A Murder Mystery by Fred Van Lente
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Fred Van Lente s brilliant debut is both an homage to the Golden Age of Mystery and a thoroughly contemporary show-business satire. As the story opens, nine comedians of various acclaim are summoned to the island retreat of legendary Hollywood funnyman Dustin Walker. The group includes a former late-night TV host, a washed-up improv instructor, a ridiculously wealthy blue collar comic, and a past-her-prime Vegas icon. All nine arrive via boat to find that every building on the island is completely deserted. Marooned without cell phone service or wifi signals, they soon find themselves being murdered one by one. But who is doing the killing, and why? 

A darkly clever take on Agatha Christie s And Then There Were None and other classics of the genre, Ten Dead Comedians is a marvel of literary ventriloquism, with hilarious comic monologues in the voice of every suspect. It s also an ingeniously plotted puzzler with a twist you ll never see coming!"

An entertaining homage to Agatha Christie - this is a humorous take on And Then There Were None - all the characters are comedians who are lured to the island in the Caribbean to collaborate on doing a special television show with the legendary funny man Dustin Walker. The 9 comedians all have a varying level of success in the industry, some are hoping to revive flagging careers, others believe a special show could not be complete without them. As with the Agatha Christie book all the comedians arrive to find the island is completely deserted except for them and no sign of their host. One by one they are all being picked off and killed meaning that one of them must be the killer.

Good inventive novel where the characters were believable if not all likeable but I think that is the intention. Clever inventive murders that give nothing away until the end. Thoroughly enjoyable read, funny in parts, sad in others but never boring. Quite and addictive read with a good ending and plenty of red herrings. Have to give this one a 4 star rating - had it been an original story and not a take on someone else book I would have given it a 5.

I would like to thank the publisher for sending this in exchange for an honest review.

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