A fully enfranchised flapper in Melbourne after the first War, Phryne Fisher is a heroine after anyone’s heart, and Kerry Greenwood’s prose does her full justice. Take this, for example:
Phryne Fisher had a taste for young and comely men, but she was not prone to trust them with anything but her body.
Phryne, carrying the cocktail, decanted it unobtrusively into a potted palm against which she had no personal grudge, and hoped that it would not give her away by dying too rapidly.
In the first novel in the series, Cocaine Blues, Phryne busts up a Melbourne cocaine ring and contrives the arrest (and later the hanging, as this is back in the un-PC day of capital punishment) of a back-alley rapist/abortionist. Strong characterization, great setting, and a lot of description of her clothes which makes you feel like you’ve wandered into an episode of The House of Elliott, but so what? A very enjoyable read. Fabulous cover art, too.
Author and founder of Storyknife.org.