#aww2021 · 2021 Reviews · crime · historical fiction · mystery · new release · short stories

New Release Book Review: The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions by Kerry Greenwood

Title: The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions

Author: Kerry Greenwood

Published: March 30th 2021

Publisher: Allen & Unwin

Pages: 272

Genres: Fiction, Historical, Crime, Mystery

RRP: $32.99

Rating: 3 stars

The elegant Miss Phryne Fisher returns in this scintillating collection, which features four brand-new stories.The Honourable Phryne Fisher – she of the Lulu bob, Cupid’s bow lips, diamante garters and pearl-handled pistol – is the 1920s’ most elegant and irrepressible sleuth.

Miss Phryne Fisher is up to her stunning green eyes in intriguing crime in each of these entertaining, fun and compulsively readable stories. With the ever-loyal Dot, the ingenious Mr Butler and all of Phryne’s friends and household, the action is as fast as Phryne’s wit and logic.

Review:

Chic and dignified, Miss Phryne Fisher is the epitome of 1920s glamour. With plenty of sass and pizzazz, this beautiful detective charms her way through the various crimes that come her way. Now immortalised on the small and big screen, this enigmatic literary heroine returns in a short story collection, which features four brand new adventures. The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions is a lively read for fans old and new of the honourable Phryne Fisher.

Travel back in time to Melbourne in the 1920s in the company of the esteemed Miss Fisher, as she uses her beauty, wit, intelligence and elegance to solve a variety of mysteries. There is no doubting Miss Fisher’s natural charm and sharp mind as she works to solve some of Melbourne’s most baffling crimes. Each of the cases presented in this short story collection are perplexing, amusing, merry and besetting. Accompanying Miss Fisher on her crime-based adventures are her entourage, which includes gentle Dot, Mr Butler and Detective Jack. With the support of these allies, Miss Fisher seizes the day yet again when there is a crime to be solved.

The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions (intriguing title) is a 2021 publication from Allen and Unwin. Seventeen short stories that all feature the invincible Miss Phryne Fisher fill this collection. Four of the stories included in Kerry Greenwood’s title are brand new, while the remaining tales are taken from a previous treasury. All are based around the same location and time frame, Melbourne in the year 1928. This is a setting and era that I find very intriguing, so the opportunity to read The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions definitely appealed.

I am a big fan of the both the page and screen versions of Miss Fisher. I finished viewing the television series some time ago now and I plan to watch the feature length movie very soon. I have also been making my way through the twenty strong book collection of the Phryne Fisher Mysteries series. The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions offered me a great opportunity to join one of my favourite literary heroines on a handful of new adventures. Although it would have been nice to have a collection of all new mysteries in this release, the four I was granted with was very much welcomed on my behalf. I did feel I relied upon my own background knowledge of both the previous books and the television series to navigate through this new volume of stories. There was a spasmodic feel to this compilation at times and as I am generally not a fan of the short story format, I did have to work hard to attain the full entertainment value of this assortment of Miss Fisher puzzles. However, I couldn’t fault the history, period detail and setting base, along with the loyal characterisation. Kerry Greenwood knows her cast like the back of her hand. This release was no exception to her previous works.

An opening ‘Apologia’ from author Kerry Greenwood precedes this collection and it is worth reading prior to starting your journey with The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions. Following this bonus extra is a six-page spread on Phryne Fisher. This supplement gives the reader an essential insight into the origins of this amazing character, her background, past, early beginnings and Kerry Greenwood’s intentions for her page creation. I found this beneficial as a fan of the series. An accompanying Glossary at close of the book rounds off this collection nicely. The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions is a fine addition to the Phryne Fisher Mysteries series.

The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions by Kerry Greenwood was published on 30th March 2021 by Allen & Unwin. Details on how to purchase the book can be found here.

To learn more about the author of The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions, Kerry Greenwood, visit here.

*Thanks extended to Allen & Unwin for providing a free copy of this book for review purposes.

The Lady with the Gun Asks the Questions is book #30 of the 2021 Australian Women Writers Challenge

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