Saturday, November 3, 2012

Blotto, Twinks and the Dead Dowager Duchess, by Simon Brett

Blotto, Twinks and the Dead Dowager Duchess
By Simon Brett

If the adventures of Blotto and Twinks ever made their way to the big screen they'd surely merit an X rating. That's X for eXtremely silly, of course. For make no mistake about it, these are very silly books indeed. Not that that's a bad thing, mind you.

This is the second installment of a series that's already up to four books (though only the first two seem to be available yet here in the US). Which is not surprising, given that Brett is a book writing machine who has turned out more than eighty novels in all. Other books in the series include the first - Blotto, Twinks and the Ex-King's Daughter - which I reviewed here. There's also the more recent Blotto, Twinks and the Rodents of the Riviera and Blotto, Twinks and the Bootlegger’s Moll.

If you've read my reviews here before you know that I don't typically go in for providing intricate plot descriptions, regardless of the book, but especially with something like a Blotto and Twinks book. As I said in my aforementioned B&T review, the plot in these books is really nothing more than "a framework on which Brett can hang an endless string of gags." After reading this volume I'm sticking by that statement.

But to summarize briefly, this time around the aristocratic brother and sister crime-solvers and their formidable Duchess mother are visiting another gang of aristocrats when the formidable Duchess matron of that family gets bumped off. Suspicions falls on the family's chauffeur and Blotto and Twinks set out to clear his name. One thing leads to another and before long the murder plot is left in the dust as the pair uncover a shadowy and nefarious organization whose goal is to wipe out the aristocracy itself, if you can imagine such a thing.

With the dimwitted Blotto providing the brawn (and occasionally wielding his beloved cricket bat as a weapon) and Twinks charming every man she comes in contact with and taking care of all of the brainwork, things eventually get sorted out in due course.

Did I mention that this was a very silly book? I suppose I did, but it bears repeating. This is a very silly book. If you like that sort of thing you certainly won't want to miss it.

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