Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Review: Oh Danny Boy by Rhys Bowen

I was in need of some quick reads, and so went back to my 'roots' and read a few quick mysteries. Rhys Bowen has three series that are favorites of mine: Constable Evan Evans, Molly Murphy, and Lady Georgiana. I think I would classify these series 'cozy mysteries' (if I truly knew what that genre name meant!). I will review Oh Danny Boy of the Molly Murphy series here. Click to read my review of A Royal Pain from the Her Royal Spyness series.

Oh Danny Boy
is the 5th in the Molly Murphy series by Rhys Bowen. It's 1902, Molly Murphy is a recent immigrant to the United States from Ireland, living in New York City in the early . Her arrival in the US, her family background, friends she makes are all parts of the first four books. I highly recommend reading these in order as I believe it will make the books more enjoyable. As a result of choices in the first books, Molly is a female private investigator at a time when women didn't have any rights or decent jobs.

In this book, Molly has to investigate why her friend, police captain Daniel Sullivan has been jailed for taking bribes. She knows he's innocent but does not have a clue how to go about figuring out what happened. Her investigations take her through some mangy parts of the city, including talking with the head of one of the biggest gangs - he's also the one who supposedly is in cahoots with Daniel. She meets and partners up with a police matron - a female officer who is the first woman to get assigned anything besides caring for female prisoners.

Molly goes through the days with personal turmoil over Daniel beyond what is involved with this 'case'. And she gets involved in some of Daniel's investigations - maybe one of those is why he was framed.

There is the predictable chase at the end with the real criminal at the end, but until it started, I did not know who 'did it'. I enjoy this series because Molly is such a great character in a time when women were not allowed to be leaders publicly. As an investigator, she is out there in the man's world finding answers, making changes. I can easily imagine her there, with her emotions and choices being very real to me.

The series starts with Murphy's Law. I recommend them for light, fun mysteries.

Rating: 3.5/5 stars

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