Detective Jake Daggers likes his murder investigations the way he likes his women - straightforward, easy, and with a killer body.
So when his older-than-dust partner throws his back out on a goblin raid, his captain assigns him a new running mate - a sexy young half-elf by the name of Shay Steele.
It seems like a match made in Daggers' imagination, but Steele's no pushover. She's a powerful forensic psychic, and she's got sass oozing out of her boots.
In a debut case teeming with fire mages, foundries, and a dead guy who's crispier than bacon, it's pretty clear Daggers isn't the only one getting a heaping helping of RED HOT STEELE.
©2014 Alex P. Berg (P)2015 Alex P. Berg
I live to ride my bike.
If I cold give a 1/2 a star the overall would be a 2.5 stars. It would get that much because Berg does a great job with the voices. Berg does not have the finesse in writing a mystery. The very competent, actually star detective, hormones get the best of him that he did not even ask the victim's fiance best friend any relevant information. This character then drops off the radar and not seen again until the end. That error drove me crazy though out the story. It was a total setup for me to determine who was the murder.
Secondly, I was crazy with questions about the world. There was very little back story to how and why the world works the way that it is does. The first day that Daggers and Steel works together, they spend hours walking to places. There are no cars. The mode of transportation is rickshaws. Walking is the prevalent method of transportation because rickshaws cost $$. As with any city government, cutting cost is a major concern. Yet, knowing that in your society walking is the mode of transportation why does Steel even wear heels? The chain of evidence is hilarious. Police walks evidence through the street or by rickshaw.
Third, no where was it address why a dark elf needs dark make-up. So you would expect that, ok the victim complexion is not actually dark. That is just thrown in there are never address. It is mention but not the significance. Daggers' is suspicious of Steel's and later he connects Steel's "vision" to the wrong sex. Berg is so obvious dropping stuff that you know it has significance. Add up all the dropped follow up questions or clues not followed up and your have a weak story and a plot you can guess?.
If you expect a challenging mystery, this is not it. Dagger does have an entertaining appeal. He is a lot like Columbo who solves his crimes with his mind and but Dagger throws a lot of jabs at people.
I tried to buy his other novels but they are not in English. How do I find the others in an English translation? I loved this story.
Both it and the story are amateurish. The author crammed descriptors and adjectives into the story and read it like a kid trying to get extra credit from the teacher.
I very much enjoyed Red Hot Steel. I look at three things in a mystery audio book: quality of the story, quality of the performance, and how well the mystery puzzle was presented to the reader.
I think the quality of the story was very good. The characters were engaging, the pace was fast, keeping me interested, and the dialog was a lot of fun. I was surprised by, but very much enjoyed, the '30s style noir feel of the writing, even though the story is in a fantasy setting.
The audio performance was OK. The book was narrated by the author and he did a good job of giving voice to the main character, but he had trouble doing the same for most of the other characters. The performance never bored me and I was never confused as to who was speaking (issues I have had with lower quality performances) but I think a professional voice actor would have put a much better polish on the performance.
The real fun of a mystery book is trying to guess whodunnit before the author's big reveal. I give bonus points if the author gives all the facts to solve the mystery throughout the book, but can still successfully mislead me. This puzzle was a decent one. Mr Berg did a good job of introducing the puzzle pieces in a subtle way, but he didn't get any bonus points. He made the mistake of strongly drawing the reader'/listener's attention to the murderer when he introduced the character and then ignoring them for most of the rest of the book, which made me wonder why he introduced that character at all.
I have recommended Red Hot Steel to friends and will definitely purchase more books in this series as my budget allows.
I must not be sophisticated enough for books like this. Characters that have powers, but don't have powers...what s concept ... I thought this was a book but alas on the end it wasn't a book just a lot of words thrown together in a book form or not. Keep on going find another book that at least has a little substance
Book-loving Brit :o)
Poor, hackneyed 'film noir' style detective stuff - narration smug and uninteresting. Couldn't get past first chapter.
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