Starred Reviews for Alex Bledsoe’s Dark Jenny
The third Eddy Lacrosse novel finds Eddy and friends snowed in at his tavern-office when a large coffin is delivered. The explanation entails a long story that goes back to Eddie’s early years as an investigator and
to the legendary island of Grand Bruan. Readers soon realize that Grand Bruan is an noirish alternate version of Great Britain; that its king, Marcus Drake, is alternate reality’s King Arthur; and that Eddy’s
tale is another take on the final days of Camelot. Originally hired to keep an eye on a philandering husband, Eddy just happens to be present when one of the Knights of the Double Tarn is poisoned, and
Queen Jennifer is accused of the crime. Worse, her loyal defender, Elliott Spears, is absent, along with Cameron Kern, the King’s old advisor (and magician). Bledsoe’s clever combination of noir and myth
makes for an engaging story, and placing investigator Eddy at the center offers a fresh twist. Bledsoe’s characters are especially memorable, including Dave Agravaine, a bully who likes to hit women;
overweight and overworked but loyal Bob Kay; and Marc’s nephew, Dread Ted Medraft—not to mention the giggleweed-smoking Kern. Fans of Bledsoe’s other blends of fantasy and noir will love his latest, and
new readers will be able to jump right in. Try suggesting this to fans of Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files.
From Publishers Weekly:
Bledsoe whips up a perfect blend of Arthurian legend and hard-boiled detecting in the third novel featuring “private sword jockey” Eddie LaCrosse (after 2009’s Burn Me Deadly). While tracking a client’s wayward husband on the island kingdom of Grand Bruan, which is ruled by King Marcus Drake and his Knights of the Double Tarn, LaCrosse falls under suspicion when a knight dies of a poisoned apple he snatched from a tray prepared specially by Queen Jennifer. Fortunately, the detective manages to convince the king’s seneschal that he may not be guilty, and is asked to help identify the real criminal. The mystery and its ramifications for the Grand Bruan royals will seem familiar to readers of Thomas Malory, but Bledsoe skillfully combines humor, action, deduction, and emotion to make the material fresh and engaging for fans of both fantasy and noir.
Dark Jenny releases March 29th, 2011.