Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Murder And Laughter: Strange Or Perfect Combination

Murder and laughter seem like a strange mix and brings to mind visions of a madman on a killing spree laughing a hideous sound.

To me, however, murder and laughter in books makes for a good combination. Just think of all the cozy murder mysteries - there’s always a bit of laughter in them. Laughter helps with the tense moments. In real life there’s usually laughter during visiting hours at a funeral when friends and family remember good times with the deceased. Laughter is a great way to cope.

While there are bits of humor in the murder mystery I’m sharing today, I also have a couple of just humorous books to share to liven up your reading. It may also expand your knowledge in areas you never imaged. First, murder then laughter.

THE WRONG MAN by David Ellis

The Wrong Man coverDefense attorney Jason Kolarich has no idea what he is getting into when he agrees to take over a murder case.

Author David Ellis begins the pace slowly drawing you in and steadily builds it to a climactic end. With each new twist and turn, he turns the adrenaline rush up another notch.

Narrator Luke Daniels does an excellent job bringing the story to life and giving the characters individual voices. His interruption of the emotions enhances the story.

Jason has been asked to defend a homeless Iraq War veteran for killing a young paralegal. Taking the case, he intends to use an insanity defense based on PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder).
When he’s unable to use the insanity defense, Jason begins digging deeper for clues and quickly realizes his client could be innocent. Jason uncovers that the paralegal discovered something just days before she was killed that is possible linked to a terrorist plot against the city. 

Meanwhile, an enforcer for the Mob pays Jason a visit for advice. When the man is found murdered days later, Jason begins to think there’s a connection to the paralegal’s death.

Battling time and legal obstacles, Jason races to save not only his client but the city as well. What price is he willing to pay for the truth and justice?

Author David Ellis takes plausible terrorist attacks and gives them merit. He also shows a side of the terrorists that will touch your heart strings and cause moments of compassion. He brings it all together in a heart-pounding story with a dramatic (and surprise) conclusion.

THE WRONG MAN is the third Jason Kolarich story, but can be read on its own. Author David Ellis website is www.davidellis.com

The Wrong Man by David Ellis, A Jason Kolarich Novel, Performed by Luke Daniels, Brilliance Audio, @2012, ISBN: 978-1455836628, 10 Discs, Listening Time: Approximately 12 Hours

FTC Full Disclosure - This audio book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

Why Does Batman coverIf you collected comic books as a kid or enjoy the Sunday funnies, then you’re going to love WHY DOES BATMAN CARRY SHARK REPELLENT? By Brian Cronin.

The book is filled with much more than I expected. The trivia covers funny tidbits, as well as bits of history.

The 100 lists featured in the book cover all aspects of comics including artists’ information and storylines. There’s detailed information on the various comic book characters.
There are panels from various comic books, as well as comic book covers sprinkled throughout the book. In addition, there is a section on the “Four Strange Comic Book Ads From The 1950s” with the ads shown.

Did you know three pop culture icons had a connection to Jack Kirby? Known as “the King,” Kirby is a wildly acclaimed comic book artist.

There’s a list of the top 25 DC Comic Book Characters and a list of the top 25 Marvel Comic Book Characters. I never knew so many superheroes had pets but there’s a list of ‘Nine Great Superhero Pets.’ Do you remember Zabu? Another interesting fact - before Christopher Reeve was selected to play Superman, 15 other actors were offered the role. Can you see Charles Bronson as Superman?

Anything and everything you ever want to know about your favorite comic book character can be found in this book. This is a must have for any comic book fan. But if you’re not a comic book junkie, you’ll still enjoy the trivia found here.

Why Does Batman Carry Shark Repellent? And Other Amazing Comic Book Trivia by Brian Cronin, Plume, @2012, ISBN: 978-0452297845, Paperback, 288 Pages 

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

Dumb History coverThe next time you make a mistake just remember that some of the dumbest mistakes have been made by world leaders.

Author Joey Green has put together a collection of surprising mistakes. Trivia fans, as well as history buffs, will find this book appealing.

The book tells of presidential blunders from William Howard Taft to George Bush to Gerald Ford to Dwight D. Eisenhower. It covers epic historical blunders such as an event prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor. There are movie-related blunders such as the prediction Close Encounters of the Third Kind would be a flop. There are even government blunders concerning a letter to a dead man stopping his food stamps but allowing him the opportunity to reapply if his circumstances changed.

If this type of history was included in school studies, students would be eager to attend class.

DUMB HISTORY is a must have for everyone’s library. What a great way to learn while having a laugh or two. 

Dumb History, The Stupidest Mistakes Ever Made by Joey Green, Plume, @2012, ISBN: 978-0452297739, Paperback, 256 Pages 

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.
Do you enjoy a little humor with your murder mysteries? Thanks so much for stopping by. Remember to enjoy a good book today, and have a laugh to brighten your day.


  1. Mason - I think humour is absolutely critical to getting through life. And actually, threads of humour can really help in a crime fiction novel too. It can lighten a story and carry it along. I've got to take a look at Dumb History. Nice to know I'm not the only one who makes mistakes...

  2. A nice variety of books. Always good to keep a reader on her toes!


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