Title: Bad Things Happen
Author: Harry Dolan
Narrator: Erik Davies
Audio: 10.8 hours
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Tom Kristoll, who recently hired the mysterious David Loogan to be an editor of his small literary magazine, Gray Streets, is dead. And David – much like the characters in the Gray Streets stories – decides that it is up to him (and not the attractive detective) to solve the mystery of Tom’s murder. The bodies start piling up, as do the suspects, as David puts together the pieces of Tom’s death.
I’ve said this quite a bit lately: I think I may not be a mystery reader. I get annoyed by the plethora of twists and implausible connections. I find it hard to believe that anyone can get to the conclusions they get to. And in the end, things always just seem too convenient for me. Apparently I am a mystery cynic.
Which is why I don’t think we can blame Harry Dolan for failing to impress me with Bad Things Happen.
I tried to give this a fair shot. But about halfway through I was bored and simply kept listening to see what happened. If it were a print book, there is a good chance I would have put it down. The plot was too complicated for me and there were too many suspects for me. I was also expecting something a bit more literary and was disappointed when it was really just a mystery.
Much of the positive feeling I have toward this book is due to its setting: Ann Arbor. I grew up just outside of Ann Arbor and went to college and law school there so I know it intimately. It is always a joy to read a book set somewhere you know well. I could actually picture the places David went. Had this been set anywhere else, this might be a much different review.
Others loved this book. So if you do like mysteries, maybe this is for you. But for the casual mystery reader, I might have to recommend taking a pass.
Amy Einhorn and I really aren’t getting along as well as we used to, huh?
Erik Davies has this rough voice that worked well for this type of book. None of my bad feeling toward this book has to do with the audio production (although I was kind of glad that Tom died because he sounded a little robotic).