Review: Dark Jenny by Alex Bledsoe
Recommended for fans of Arthurian legend and hard-boiled detectives.
Dark Jenny is what the Arthurian legends turns into when it’s run through the lens of Raymond Chandler. It’s a very familiar feeling story and it’s not just because of Arthur.
Eddie LaCrosse is an honest PI, I mean Sword Jockey who gets pulled into the political intrigues of the country of Grand Braun. He’s just at the court for an infidelity job, but he witnesses a murder he’s immediately accuse of. Our Sam Spade with a sword — I can’t resist the alliteration — convinces the knight in charge of the investigation that he’d be more useful interviewing suspects than being locked up.
Since one of the suspects is the queen, things quickly get out of hand and Grand Braun teeters on the edge of civil war.
This isn’t some musical Camelot. While Dark Jenny reflects the Arthurian legend, Grand Braun is a world that grew out of bloodshed and war to be united behind a charismatic warrior king. There’s court politics and gossip; there’s crosses and double-crosses; there’s horrible human nature and wonderful dreams.
This is also a hard-boiled mystery adventure. All of the clues are there if you want them, but the ride is fast enough that you can just pull down the safety bar and enjoy it. Now I just need to get Alex Bledsoe’s other books!