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The Love Potion Murders in the Museum of…
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The Love Potion Murders in the Museum of Man: A Norman de Ratour Mystery…

by Alfred Alcorn

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Showing 1-5 of 22 (next | show all)
Completely incoherent: made it up to page 50 (my this is where you can quit if you really can't stand it point) and abandoned ship. Very sad comedown from "Murder at the Museum of Man". ( )
  annbury | May 21, 2012 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
My first impression of this book was that the language was, for lack of a better word, annoying. The author seemed to fall into the trap of using big words just because he knew them, which simply made the prose sound dated and stuffy. My sense of annoyance eased a little bit, however, once I became better acquainted with the protagonist and first-person narrator, Norman de Ratour. He is the essence of old-fashioned trying to stay contemporary. Although his language was bothersome at first, he quickly becomes more endearing than annoying, more like a grandfather figure than one of those long-winded old men who love nothing more than to hear themselves speak. However, aside from that, I didn't find this book very original. Not generally a fan of mysteries anyway, I found very little to truly enjoy. Most of the characters are unconvincing in their performances and agendas, and the relationships are overly fluid and very superficial. The story as a whole was simply not believable, and suspension of disbelief didn't kick in at all. It's presented as something that could happen in our world, and yet somehow it just doesn't fit. ( )
  stixnstones004 | Feb 8, 2011 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
To be honest, I had high hopes and expectations when I began reading “The Love Potion Murders in the Museum of Man”. Sadly, these hopes were not fulfilled. I got through the first 100 pages, which is the amount I usually read when I can see the book sucks but I want to give it a chance. That being said, the book plods along. There are a lot of characters with really strange names. I felt at times that I should be making a list to keep track of them. The main character, Norman de Ratour, is supposed to be the director of the Museum of Man and a part-time detective (?). I wasn't really sure why he considered himself a detective. The reader must have had to have read the first book in the series to get that. None of the seemingly hundred characters that I came across were in the least bit likable, even Norman. His main goal in life, beside solving crime, was to keep his museum out of the hands of the University with which it was loosely affiliated. Why? Who knows, probably ego. He seemed to think that he was the only thing standing in the way of a terrible catastrophe. I came away really not caring if the University took over the Museum.

Also, there was a bit of 'ick' factor in here. Norman's wife is dying of cancer. His step-daughter flirts with him and he, I expect, will follow through on it. I wonder if he will wait until his wife is dead? I refuse to find out. Reading this book has been a thorough waste of time: hours I will never recover. (Yes, unbelievably it took me hours to get through 100 pages.) Reading a mystery/detective novel should not be this much work.

PS The author likes to use $20 words when an ordinary word would suffice. Showing off, I think. You might want to have a dictionary at your side if you don't know what amanuensis means. You'll encounter it on the first page. Also, brush up on your French. He peppers French phrases all over the book. ( )
1 vote sharonandjohn | Jun 11, 2010 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I quit after 20 pages. Why, WHY, is it written in prose from 200 years ago? It's set in the modern day, and it just makes the narrator look like a mental patient. Which would make for a fascinating book, if this wasn't supposed to be a murder mystery and/or satire. The other reviews confirmed my suspicions that it only got worse, so I quit. ( )
  FFortuna | Apr 16, 2010 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I only got a few chapters into this book because it was so strangely written. The author went on strangle little tangents and wrote the whole thing in a very clipped, stilted manner. Generally just not engaging. ( )
  dberryfan | Dec 21, 2009 |
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It is with reluctance and foreboding that I trouble these pages with an account of a tragic, unseemly, and suspicious incident here at the Museum of Man.
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When Professor Humberto Ossmann and Dr. Clematis Woodley, who heartily despised each other in life, are found together in a mortal embrace, Norman de Ratour knows that evil once again stalks the hallowed precincts of the Museum of Man. It has been several years since the museum was wracked by what became known as the "cannibal murders." Many of the same characters - Malachy Morin, Lieutenant Tracy of the Seaboard Police Department, Constance Brattle of Wainscott University's Oversight Committee, the Reverend Alfie Lopes, Elsbeth, now Norman's beloved wife, and Israel Landes, his devoted friend - play their parts as an unseemly conspiracy unfolds: A powerful aphrodisiac under development in the Genetics Lab is being used as a murder weapon. Norman, now director of the museum, figuratively dons his deerstalker hat to help the Seaboard police find and bring the miscreants to justice.… (more)

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