Friday 9 July 2021

The Suitcase in the Hall - Edwin Torr - Dead Means Dead Book 1.6

The Suitcase in the Hall
Dead Means Dead Book 1.6
Obolus Books

When I finished this I had read 4 of the 8 available in this series. And a total of 8 others under one of his other pen names. I picked this  and two others up after reading Demons, which I picked up right after finishing, Blood, Bone and Coffin, and know I will read all 8 that are currently available. I picked up the three short stories that fall between books 1 and 2 in the series. And before I had finished all three, I picked up the remaining books in the series. It is such a very series. Torr is one of three names this author publishes under, to the best of my knowledge. But who is he really? I have read all of his adult crime novels published as J.E. Mayhew. I have read one of his Young Adult collections of short stories as Jon Mayhew. And now four under this pen name of Edwin Torr. Reaching out to the author before reading book one I believe there are 8 stories published under this name and in this series. There are three novels and 5 novella’s or short stories to date. And though this is the fourth if reading them in order. Which is not a real requirement. It is a fun story in what in an immensely entertaining series. While reading this series, I cannot help but think about Cedar Sanderson’s The Groundskeeper Raking Up the Dead and Zombie Death Extreme Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator by Karina Fabian all three authors approaches are very differently the stories are somewhat similar and just as enjoyable and memorable. 

As stated this story is terribly entertaining. The main stories in this series focus on a young man named Tom Coffin; he is a Specialist Funeral Director. His job is to put the undead back in the ground. Coffin’s mode of transport is a car called Persephone, a Jaguar XJ hearse a 1995 model, a vehicle that looks like the offspring of a family station wagon and the Popemobile. The description of this book is:

“Emily Sparrow takes a job at a run-down guest house in the strange and mysterious Tramman Court. There’s something wrong with the house and its owner, Mr Thresher, is hiding something. Why does Emily come across a seemingly abandoned battered brown suitcase as she cleans and tidies and what is the dark secret that the house holds? But Emily has secrets of her own and is running from something. When the her past and Thresher’s dark heritage collide, something terrible is bound to happen. Another short story based in the world of author Edwin Torr's Dead Means Dead series.”  

But this one does not tie directly to Tom or other characters from stories I have read to date. The connection is Tottenham Court. An elusive little street that most wander by without noticing, or through and then people wonder where they have been. At least that is what is said of Tramman Court. And Tottenham has it’s own secrets especially number 12. We are told at the beginning of the story:

“Tramman Court was a square that time forgot. Maybe deliberately or maybe it just passed-by the small square accidentally. There were no lines of Boris Bikes along the jagged, black spears of iron railing that held back the riotous rhododendron bushes in the shadowy central garden. There were no fancy recycling bins dotting the weathered limestone paving, no red lines skirting the kerbstones. In fact, the road itself was still cobbled, as if town planners considered the Court a waste of tarmac. Although July had only just got underway, the leaves of last autumn still clumped together in sullen piles around corners and clogged the gutters. To Emily Sparrow, the square felt more like a small wood than part of a teeming metropolis. In fact, the almost tangible scent of decay that tainted Tramman Court made Emily think of lost country graveyards rather than bright lights and the buzz of traffic.”

Nothing like stepping into the middle of Family Business, and with all the Dead Means Dead Books, the family business is usually a little unusual. And sometimes you end up exactly where you need to be. But will Emily let a few oddities drive her from her newfound place? To find out you will need to read this well crafted short story. A very solid 5/5 Stars!
Books as J.E. Mayhew:
DCI William Blake Series:

Books as Jon Mayhew:
The Spybrarian

Monster Odyssey Series:
1.0 The Eye of Neptune
2.0 The Wrath of the Lizard Lord
3.0 The Curse of the Ice Serpent
4.0 The Venom of the Scorpion

Mortlock Series:
2.0 The Demon Collector
3.0 The Bonehill Curse

Collins Big Cat Series:
The Merchant of Venice: Band 16/Sapphire
Hamlet: Band 18/Pearl
Romeo and Juliet: Band 18/Pearl
Macbeth: Band 18/Pearl

Contributed to:
Beyond the Book: A Collection of Short Stories
Storycraft: How To Teach Creative Writing
Criminal Shorts: UK Crime Book Club Anthology
Make Doves Not War - Forward

Books as Edwin Torr:
Dead Means Dead Series
1.0 Demons - 2017
1.3 Cotton Candy - 2017
1.9 Remurdered - 2017
2.0 Angel Hunter - 2017
2.5 Cold Caller - 2017
3.0 Jigsaw Girl - 2018

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