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Cocaine Blues by Kerry Greenwood
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Cocaine Blues (1989)

by Kerry Greenwood

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Phryne Fisher Mysteries (1)

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1,2741069,453 (3.64)240
  1. 10
    Strong Poison by Dorothy L. Sayers (aulsmith)
  2. 00
    Queen of Hearts by Rhys Bowen (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: The Royal Spyness mysteries are set in England in the 1930s; the Phryne Fisher mysteries take place in Australia in the 1920s. Both cozy historical mystery series feature smart, independent, and unconventional heroines, and strong evocations of time and place.… (more)
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» See also 240 mentions

English (105)  French (1)  All languages (106)
Showing 1-5 of 105 (next | show all)
Phryne Fisher is a young woman living on an estate in England. She was born and lived in poverty for a dozen or so years in Australia, but then several people died and her father inherited the estate and with it oodles of money. So they moved to England and Phryne became a woman with whom to be reckoned on the scene of smart young things during the 1920s in England.

But, someone's pearls get swiped during a blackout at their house. In no time Phryne figures out the problem and fingers the culprit. Astonished by her amazingly quick feat of deduction, one of the guests asks if Phryne might head off to Australia to do a bit of investigating. He's worried about his daughter, Lydia Andrews, who seems to be sick whenever she's around her husband, John, but is fine once she gets away from him. Their worry is that John is poisoning Lydia.

So, Phryne heads off to Australia. When she gets there, she picks up some sidekicks through chance encounters. There's Dorothy Bryant, generally known as Dot, who becomes her maid and gal Friday, there's Bert and Cec (long 'e' for Cecil) who are taxi drivers, there's Dr. Elizabeth McMillan, a feminist physician she picked up on the boat over. Somehow it seems weird to me just to bump into so many people casually, but then have them automagically turn into reliable assistants with nary a moment of vetting.

Anyway, Phryne gets involved in all kinds of things in addition to the problems (or not) of Lydia Andrews. There is a Russian princess who is trying to reclaim the family jewels from whomever stole them. The princess has a set of twins, Sasha and Mlle. De Lisse, who are dancers. Sasha, also rather conveniently finds himself in Phryne's bed from time to time. He's hoping for a pay off, but Phryne figures her "charms" should be payment enough. Then too, there appears to be a ring of cocaine dealers/suppliers who may or may not have something to do with a Turkish Bath run my Madame Breda. Oh yeah, I almost forgot, some back-alley abortionists!

Well, all kinds of stuff happens. It could be somewhat exciting, but much of it is way too facile, which is to say, it all doesn't much make sense. Phryne figures things out without actually having to do anything much but wait for coincidence after coincidence.

The reason I got started with this stuff is that my spouse has begun watching various mystery series on her computer, using our son's Netflix account. So, I figured I should see what these things are about. Yes, it's sort of fun, but.... I like things to be a bit more true to life, or to what life might be. So, I'm not sure I'll read more about Phryne. I might, however change my mind. Stay tuned.
( )
  lgpiper | Jun 21, 2019 |
Honorable Miss Phryne Fisher travelers back to Melbourne, Australia after years abroad. But she isn't there on a social visit. A couple has asked her to investigate why their daughter gets terrible ill now and then. Is her husband trying to poison her?

It always a bit tricky reading a book after watching a tv series based on it, and vice versa. But I, despite all the difference between the book and the tv-series still enjoyed the book immensely. But I must admit that I miss the sexual tension between Phryne Fisher and Jack Robinson that exist in the tv-series and alas is absent in the book. But despite that, the story was great and I love to read about Australia in the 1920s.

Phryne Fisher is such a wonderful character, adventurous and glamorous. Now I'm looking forward to reading the next book in the series!

( )
  MaraBlaise | May 19, 2019 |
Dragged some but overall a good read. The first in a series. I plann to see if the library has anymore of the series. ( )
  NixieH | Apr 17, 2019 |
This is the first in the series of the Phryne Fisher mysteries. I had seen a few of the PBS episodes and enjoyed them. I've found that the visuals of the TV show are nice, but I get more out of reading the books.

Phryne (fry-nee) was born to a poor family in Australia, and life wasn't easy. Her unusual name didn't make it easier either. During WWI, family members in England died off to the point that her father inherited the title and all the trimmings. This meant the family moved to England and Phryne was raised as an aristocrat. The slight problem is that she doesn't fit the mould. She can fly a plane, loves to drive fast and enjoys life. She decides to return to Australia to get away from the ho-hum of high society.

She has the money to set herself up with house and car and start on her detection career. She also takes on a butler and housekeeper couple, a pair of taxi drivers/longshore men and a secretary; all who assist her in her cases.

She takes on a case of finding the missing daughter of a Colonel and his wife. This is what gives her the excuse to move to Australia. The parents think that the husband may be poisoning their daughter with murder as the goal. Phryne's aristocratic background gives her carte blanche entry to society and access to the 'missing' daughter. Phryne also makes the acquaintance of some unusual Russian ballet performers, who are also out to bust any and all cocaine dealers they find. How this mix of characters plays out is quite interesting. From high society to the underworld of cocaine, Phryne finds herself exploring.

I enjoyed reading this and plan to read the rest of the series. Hopefully in sequence, but not binge reading. ( )
  ChazziFrazz | Mar 3, 2019 |
I decided to stop listening to this one -- it's getting progressively more explicit, and I have more worthwhile stuff to listen to.
  tkcs | Feb 23, 2019 |
Showing 1-5 of 105 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kerry Greenwoodprimary authorall editionscalculated
Daniel, StephanieNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Norling, BethCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
To my mother and father
First words
The glass in the French window shattered.
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Disambiguation notice
Also titled:
Miss Phryne Fisher Investigates
Death by Misadventure
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Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 159058385X, Paperback)

This is where it all started! The first classic Phryne Fisher mystery, featuring our delectable heroine, cocaine, communism and adventure. Phryne leaves the tedium of English high society for Melbourne, Australia, and never looks back.


The London season is in full fling at the end of the 1920s, but the Honorable Phryne Fisher--she of the green-grey eyes, diamant garters and outfits that should not be sprung suddenly on those of nervous dispositions--is rapidly tiring of the tedium of arranging flowers, making polite conversations with retired colonels, and dancing with weak-chinned men. Instead, Phryne decides it might be rather amusing to try her hand at being a lady detective in Melbourne, Australia.


Almost immediately from the time she books into the Windsor Hotel, Phryne is embroiled in mystery: poisoned wives, cocaine smuggling rings, corrupt cops and communism--not to mention erotic encounters with the beautiful Russian dancer, Sasha de Lisse--until her adventure reaches its steamy end in the Turkish baths of Little Lonsdale Street.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:13:35 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Phyrne Fisher heads for Melbourne, Australia, where she encounters a mystery involving poisoned wives, cocaine smuggling, corrupt cops, and communism.

» see all 10 descriptions

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