Cocaine Blues: A Phryne Fisher Mystery
Poisoned Pen, 2006 (2006)
Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth
lamboyant, confident, rather outrageous at times, and, on the surface, every bit a lady, Phryne Fisher returns to her roots – Australia – in far better circumstances than she left. Leaving the slums of Melbourne in rags, she returns an heiress bored with her life as a lady in the late 1920s.
n a mission to look into the health of a friend's daughter, Phryne acquires hangers-on at a fast pace. They include a personal maid, two cab drivers, a female doctor who bucked the system to study medicine, a Russian princess and her two grandchildren - as well as several members of the Melbourne police force.
he suspects that the lady in question's husband - a lout who has no head for business - is systematically poisoning the friend's daughter. One thing leads to another and Phryne becomes involved in the lucrative drug business as well as an illegal abortion ring.
hryne is not adverse to shedding her clothes in public if it will further her cause. Nor is she shy about bedding a man who appeals to her. Phryne is way ahead of her time. Will her time ever come?
ecause of her success in assisting the gendarmes, Phryne has decided to open a detective agency in Melbourne. Though
is the first in her series, this is its first printing in the United States. But the book's not being in sequence didn't matter a whit to me. I love Phryne at any time in her life.
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