09 February 2006

Book Banter -- Whiskey Sour

Title: Whiskey Sour
Author: Joe Konrath
Length: 270 pages
Genre: mystery
Plot Basics: Chicago police lieutenant Jacqueline "Jack" Daniels is on the case of a creepy killer who calls himself the Gingerbread Man, all while trying to pick up her personal life after her long-time live-in boyfriend moves out.
Banter Points: Konrath writes a great blog on publishing genre fiction and how to be aggressive with marketing as a writer. What does this have to do with the novel, you ask? Everything. Konrath obviously knows what he's talking about on the blog because his book(s) got published when Jack Daniels is a rather run-of-the-mill female sleuth. One the plus side, the writing is solid and well done. The clues in the crime line up and the city of Chicago is saved. (As if you were really worried...)
Bummer Points: At least for Word Nerd, this Whiskey Sour has too much sour in the mix. Konrath employs POV switching from first-person of Jack Daniels to a limited third of the Gingerbread Man. Second, the title. Save for a scene where Jack drinks a whiskey sour, Word Nerd finds little connections between the plot and the title. Since the next books are "Bloody Mary" and "Rusty Nail," Word Nerd suspects that the title are supposed to be more clever than connected. (Then again, this works for Evanovich and the numbered Stephanie Plum books, so maybe it's not a big deal.) Three, Jack Daniels. Very clever name. Very ordinary detective. In the world of female sleuths, there's just not enough to make her stand out over Plum, Scarpetta and the rest.
Word Nerd recommendation: Airplane book or beach read.

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