I rarely read fiction these days, but for some reason this popped up in Mr B’s Kindle recommendations and he passed it on to me. The Vinyl Detective can supposedly find any record, not matter how rare, and here he is tasked by a shadowy agent (a gorgeous woman, of course) with tracking down an obscure jazz title from the 1950s by a long-dead pianist. The mystery deepens as a series of grisly murders begins to follow him around, and our hero realises that this is about more than just record collecting.
A gripping detective story of two halves (in fact Side 1 and Side 2), it’s also very funny, with some lovable characters, and some not so lovable. The level of detail aimed at music fans and vinyl geeks should appeal to many here on the Afterword; as well as runout grooves and catalogue numbers there are charity shops, a car boot sale, jazz chat, copious amounts of weed, more charity shops, cats, an LA record store, yet more more charity shops and even a Disco Antistat. Also, be sure to keep some decent coffee in the house, because even if like me you don’t often drink the stuff, this book will have you craving it like a seasoned java head.
Author Andrew Cartmel was Script Editor on Doctor Who, as well as a scriptwriter for Midsomer Murders and Torchwood. His writing here is witty, pacy and completely immersive; I devoured the book in a couple of intense sittings separated by a night of dreaming about it. I immediately started on the follow-up, just out recently, which looks to be equally as good.
The Vinyl Detective: Written In Dead Wax is out in paperback, but is currently just 99p on Kindle, making it ideal summer reading for the thrifty Afternerd.
Length of Read:Medium
Might appeal to people who enjoyed…
Lounging by the pool with a ripping yarn.
One thing you’ve learned
Not to always restrict myself to nonfiction. That the hero keeps his coffee filters in the same place as I do. And that Book 3 isn’t out ‘til 2018, grrr.