THE MUSIC BOX MURDERS
Dr. Thomas Purdue, neurologist and music box collector-
restorer, gets an early-morning wake-up call from his music box
restorer/friend, Shackie, and learns that Harry Hardwick, the
world's most prominent collector of musical antiques, has been
Shortly thereafter, Thomas gets a second call, this one from
his favorite "picker", Broadway Schwartz, who tells him a rare
and desirable rigid notation music box is available for purchase
at a local antique shop.
Thomas visits the shop, negotiates, haggles, finally buys
the music box, then takes it to Shackie's workshop. Shackie
insists the instrument is not playing perfectly, and says that as
recently as the evening before, he saw Thomas's treasure in the
Harry Hardwick collection. He prevails upon Thomas to leave the
music box for diagnosis and treatment. But then Shackie is
murdered, and the box can not be found.
Fueled by a highly-developed, if idiosyncratic, sense of
right and wrong, Thomas sets out to find his music box and expose
Shackie's killer. For help he draws on Schwartz's street smarts,
the connections of antiques dealer Frank (the Crank) Maar, and
the good common sense of his loyal, if exasperated, wife, Sarah.
In the course of his investigations, Thomas flies off to visit
old friends in the upper- and underworlds of London, inherits a
condo, develops a new line of work, stumbles over five more
corpses.....and ferrets out the murderer.
Read Chapter One of "The
Music Box Murders" by Larry Karp.
What Others Are Saying...
"The Music Box Murders" is more than a finely tuned dip into
the New York antiques scene. It's an ode to the complex forces
that drive a collector. It's an exploration of how honour and
the love of beauty transcend class. It's a study of the mixture
of fondness and irritation that dance around a couple as they
listen to the swan song of their marriage. Larry Karp's first
novel is all of these things, and still manages to tip its
humorous hat to the quippy, clever P. I. novels of days gone
by...The book's tight, quick plot turns elegantly around small
objects...This pace is maintained because Larry Karp manages to
slip in his special knowledge of music boxes in a way that
supports rather than stalls the action...Larry Karp has given us
an intriguing, sympathetic sleuth that we can only hope to hear
more from." (Sandy Faust, The Mystery Review, Vol. 7, #3).
"...Purdue's keen sense of humor, his loving relationship
with his ramrod wife, and several wild and woolly close calls, as
well as revelatory details about other collectors, make this
first novel difficult to put down. An essential purchase."
"Thomas Purdue: a man who understands that sometimes the
only thing worse than telling an outright lie is telling the
outright truth. I find myself writing news commentaries on
people like him every day." (Dave Ross, KIRO Talk-show Host,
"...an extraordinary first novel; sparkling, well-plotted,
technically assured, full of deftly-realized characters and
insider's knowledge of matters both medical and musical...a book
to appeal...to anyone." (Melinda Bargreen, classical music
critic, Seattle Times).
"The plot is fast-paced, with a new complication at every
turn of the page. The style is witty...and the characters have
almost a Dickensian quirkiness; you will not likely forget
Broadway Schwartz or Frank the Crank...a Cracker Jack box full of
delightful historical and technical tidbits. There's no book
like this in detective novel literature or music box literature."
(Dr. Joseph Roesch, noted music box restorer, instructor, and
|Author: Larry Karp
Hardback: 344 pages
Published by Write Way
Publication date: 3/1/1999
currently out of print
Mass Market Paperback: 274 pages
Published by World Wide Publication date: 11/1/2000
currently out of print
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