Except this time I picked up more than just leaves.
Yes you saw that right. Hanging from the leaves was:
I do not know my snakes so I texted a photo to everyone I knew. The answer was that it was a Garter Snake. What a relief. And what a cutie!
Of course I let him go after his photo shoot. I hope he's not around when I mow this Saturday.
Here's some fun music from Bizet's opera Carmen. Itzhack Perlman is the violinist.
Murder Up My Sleeve by Erle Stanley Gardner
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The storyline was pretty straightforward and common: a black mailer is murdered. But who did it? The most likely suspects are the people he blackmailed. That includes quite a host of characters. Terry Claine, freshly back from China, is the first suspect because he owns a bamboo sleeve gun, which he brought back with him from Asia. Our murder victim just happened to be killed with a bamgoo sleeve gun. In fact Claine's is missing. It turns out that Claine's is the murder weapon, but does that mean he did it?
Claine claims innocence and begins his own investigation because some of the other suspects are personal friends of his. In particular a couple of gorgeous women. One is in love with him. Does he return her affection? The other one is not in love with him, but the reader soon finds out she's a lot more interesting.
The writing is quite dated and the way the Chinese characters are described can be cringe worthy at times and annoying at other times. They are either shuffling about speaking painfully pidgin English or they are mysterious and enigmatic, as if they were aliens from another planet.
Nevertheless it's a fun pulpy weekend read to go along with that bag of potato chips you really shouldn't be eating, either.
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So far I have not found Gardner's stories that do not include Mason or Cool and Lamb to be as successful. Are there any authors out there that you find have mastered one genre or character type but not any other?