In the world of art there is a fine line between genius and lunacy

The Bones of ParisThe Bones of Paris by Laurie R. King
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The main character Harry has got the laid back attitude of a Sam Spade like detective. Never more than a step away from a willing romp or glass of booze.
The setting is late 1920s in Paris, where the rich, famous and allegedly talented hang out together. A time and era that is filled to the brim of names yet to become globally infamous.
Paris of that time period was filled with an air of decadence and conceptual freedom.
That gaudy sense of the macabre and pleasure in the forbidden fruit takes center stage in this book. The boundaries of taste are lost within the pseudo intellectual meanderings of artists and their benefactors. Art is no longer distinguishable between sadistic tendencies and the ideas of a genius. One man’s art is another man’s rubbish or in this case hidden lunacy.
The conclusion seemed a little rushed. The reader is confronted with lists of names of missing people that offer up no real connection to the crime, ergo useless to the reader. The main character couldn’t find a link between the missing so it isn’t any wonder the reader can’t.
Apparently you have to have faux Sherlock powers to able to figure it out. The why, who and when is presented on a five minute platter towards the end to a secondary character. That didn’t make a lot of sense after the whole Harry build up.
There was a lot of name dropping but I think the author wanted to clarify that this was the norm in that era. Artists, writers, the wealthy and the famous did all flock together like birds of a feather in certain cities/countries. It was en-vogue and très chic to be part of the scene. Where else could one expect to be decadent without fear of consequence or conscience if not in gay Paris.
Overall it was a decent read, which could have done with a little more structure. The left field entrance of Mr Grey felt like an add-on due to the main character being far too distracted to solve the actual crime. Harry could do with a little less whiskey and women and far more deductive reasoning.
I received a copy of this book via NetGalley.

View all my reviews

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