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Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Yes. See below.
What did you like best about this story?
Yes, see below.
Which character – as performed by Rupert Degas – was your favourite?
If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?
“”If we were in America, I’d go to a private detective.’ ‘You could try Duffy. … He might do a job, if he was free.’”
Any additional comments?
This is the first Duffy novel by Dan Kavanagh (Julian Barnes). In the light of the attention given to Cormoran Strike, the private detective in “The Cuckoo’s Calling” by Robert Galbraith (J. K. Rowling), readers should try Duffy. Kavanagh’s unusual mix of thriller and comic novel is of a different order from Rowling’s derivative excursion into detective fiction. Although very different in tone and setting, “Duffy” bears comparison with John Banville’s moonlighting as Benjamin Black for his Quirke novels.“Duffy” is set in a very seedy and intermittently dangerous Soho in the 1970s. While Duffy is honourable to a degree, he is far from Raymond Chandler’s “knight”, making his way down Los Angeles’ “mean streets”. Duffy deliberates one evening whether to go to a singles bar for a woman or a man, and although his visits to massage parlours and peep-shows advance his investigation into the increasingly threatening blackmail of a client, he’d probably be there anyway. Crooked policemen; an extremely nasty villain; and a dodgy client to whom Duffy gives the advice pay-up or find someone to knock-off the blackmailer … these are very mean streets. Where “The Cuckoo’s Calling” is over-long and quite contrived in its characterisation, especially of the private detective, “Duffy” is very tight, getting through its plot with considerable economy while still conveying the mostly internal locations quite memorably and building up great tension. I wonder why Julian Barnes keeps his distance from Dan Kavanagh.
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