From: Richard Moore ( moorich2@aol.com)
Date: 27 Feb 2005

Anyone on the list familiar with MR. BLUR by c.c. dust (name always given as lower case) published by The Radiant Press in 2004?

It was an impulse purchase today. I love the title and the cover art features the head of a ventriloquist dummy's head over a shadowy cityscape. I also liked the cover line "there's something wrong with reality" as it is a truth I first learned as a teenager reading Philip K. Dick and have been reminded of many times over the last quarter century as I worked in Washington.

The book is labeled "A Paul Bezier Mystery" (with an accent mark over the first "e") and from the blurb I gather that he's a private eye in New York's East Village. Also featured is a detective named Ralf Westerback who in London 1888 "pursues a sinister figure through the blind alleyways of Whitechapel."

I'm up for a novel that mixes a bit of fantasy or SF into the PI form, as this one appears to do.

Opening at random I read the following paragraph that somewhat dampened my enthusiasm:

"Kyoko Jones, a lithe, athletic woman wearing a black leather catsuit, blocks the doorway. She carries an 8 mm Beretta strapped to one thigh and a carbon steel throwing knife pressed against the other. Her eyes are blue as an American sky but the rest of her face
(except for her hair, which is long and blonde as a valley girl's) is basically Asian. Her hands are encased in black Micromesh gloves that look like chain mail and act like a set of super brass knuckles. They click softly."

I sense some influence here from the modern graphic novel, a form I should know better than I do. I'll grant the catsuit--I'm not sure where or when we are in this randomly selected paragraph--but the 8 mm Beretta gives me some trouble. Beretta makes a 9 mm and a 7.62 mm
(or whatever .32 caliber translates to) but I've not heard of an 8 mm. Someone will correct me if I am wrong. If it is set in a fantasy world, they might have an 8 mm there but in a writer's group I would nitpick the point.

But what really gives me trouble is imagining this lethal babe with a sizable handgun strapped to one thigh and a throwing knife strapped to the other. He talks about her fingers clicking within her metal gloves, what about those thighs!? Unless she is as bow-legged as Gabby Hayes, she'd rattle louder than Elijah Baley with a bad hangover and give off more sparks than the average Zippo lighter.

Well now, I seem to have reviewed a novel based on one random paragraph, wildly mixing cultural references as I go along. So unfair. So much fun. A few more paragraphs like that one and the novel will have repaid me in entertainment value.

But I would still appreciate any info or views of MR. BLUR or mr. dust (who glancing inside again appears to also be a character in the novel).

Richard Moore

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