Archive | April 20, 2015

Lessons for Suspicious Minds, Charlie Cochrane

Lessons for Suspicious Minds, Charlie Cochrane
Genre:  LGBTQIA, Romance, Mystery
Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews
Saw this and it reminded me a bit of a non paranormal Magpie Lord series read. Same gentile, subtle humour. Not in your face, overt stuff, but the more subtle humour, where a nuance of tone or facial expression can make all the difference. Anyway I was astonished to see this was book ten in a series I’ve somehow completely missed – so many books so little time!! Still, book one is still free on amazon, and gave me a great insight into the two characters and the writing style used, and I soon fell in love with the duo. So opposite and yet so perfect together. What a terrible time it must have been when homosexuality carried a prison term…I read that Queen Victoria refused to sign the first Bill her minsters brought before her, not because she was a liberal minded person but because she simply could not believe  that ladies would enter same sex relationships. Whether that’s simply an urban myth I don’t does seem that focus of the time was on male homosexuality.  Sadly there are days when I feel although the law has progressed I’m not sure mental attitudes have…One of the saddest things I read in recent years was the petition for a pardon for Alan Turing, regarded as the Father for Computing Science, and a pivotal member of the code breaking team in WW2, who was convicted in 1952 of homosexual acts and subjected to chemical castration! He died two years later just 41 years old. He finally got his pardon in 2013, and has been widely recognized for his work since, but how odd, how ignorant, to lay a mans sexuality ahead of all the great things he did. Look it up – it’s heart breaking…
Anyway, back on track…The book. Loved it, love Jonty’s puppy like ebullience, his way of turning the most innocent of looks or words into something salacious, against Orlando’s more phlegmatic, pragmatic, logical, approach. They counter each other wonderfully, and make a superb team. We see more of Jonty’s parents here – and they are perfect. When homosexuality is such a crime they have a difficult line – they want their son to be happy, and know that for him its Orlando. They genuinely love Orlando too and have taken steps to make him their ward, so that the two can have a public friendship that won’t be looked at as unnatural!! Sad that even then, with so many problems around people focussed on that. Somehow the duo and Jonty’s parents have found a somewhat precarious way through the maze.
The pair have gained a reputation over past years ( and books) as being good at solving odd cases, and now get requests for their detective services. This time is a family affair with Jonty’s parents being roped in, once the duo discover there are not one but two possible murders. I love the way they set about questioning, Jonty and Orlando having their own ways of obtaining evidence and asking questions, while the parents – well, his mother is so perfect. She just kind of very politely bulldozes her way past all the gentile objections and reservations of what isn’t seemly….Between the four they somehow find the answers, though its a convoluted tale, and took me along all sorts of false trails! I didn’t see the end, and thoroughly enjoyed this read. Its not heart stopping danger, and overt, in your face, graphic sex, but lots of double entendres, alliterations, and subtle touches that make the men’s relationship so tender and romantic, and the dangers are there, but in a more subdued way, not edge of seat gripping theatrics, but as things that have to be considered and the relevant precautions taken.
Stars:  Five, a fabulous read transporting me to times past.
ARC provided by Netgalley and publishers

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