Monday, June 17, 2019

番外編: A Smart Dummy in the Tent

So for the last two months or so, I kept telling myself, don't forget to write an announcement, it'll take no time at all, it'll just be a short post.... And in the end, I still didn't manage to write this thing in time...

Last year, Locked Room International released the hilarious impossible crime mystery The 8 Mansion Murders by Takemaru ABIKO, translated by yours truly. That was not the first time Abiko had been translated to English, as some of his work for videogames (like The Starship Damrey (3DS)) had already been available in the West, but The 8 Mansion Murders was his first proper mystery novel which had been translated into English. I was obviously happy to see that the novel was received pretty well when it released (if you haven't read it yet, please do). For those who enjoyed the novel, I have good news, as more Abiko is available now. The June/August 2019 issue of Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine (which should be available right now) features Abiko's impossible crime short story A Smart Dummy In The Tent (orig.: 1990), once again translated by me. The story is part of Abiko's Mario series, and stars a... ventriloquist's dummy as the detective. Yoshio is an incredibly gifted, but somewhat clumsy ventriloquist who performs together with his puppet Mario. However, Yoshio's great secret is that Mario isn't just a tool of his trade, Mario's a whole seperate personality of Yoshio. And despite his arrogant and wise-cracking personality, Mario's also actually really clever and sharp, which comes in handy in A Smart Dummy In The Tent, when Yoshio and his love interest Mutsuki get involved with an impossible crime that occurs in the backstage area of a circus tent.

Those who enjoyed the comedy and banter of The 8 Mansion Murders should really check out the story, as this one too is immensely fun to read, while the impossible crime angle of the story is also quite original, really fitting to the circus setting. I hope you'll enjoy the read! To end with a completely uninteresting note: I have been to the circus in real life only once, when I was a kid!

As for other projects and related announcements, that's a tale for another day. Another day that might not really ask for a DeLorean, but some patience will be necessary.

5 comments :

  1. My review of "A Smart Dummy in the Tent" is coming at the end of the week and, hopefully, more will follow. Preferably the whole collection.

    By the way, have you read the recent flurry of reviews of James Scott Byrnside's Goodnight Irene and The Opening Night Murders? I would like to get your take on this western-style shin honkaku mystery writer.

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    1. Looking forward to your review.

      Yeah, I noticed the collective jump on those books :P I haven't read the novels myself yet, but they have been added to the never-ending wishlist.

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  2. See also Puppet Detective Sakon. I think you said you did not like that one however.

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    1. Mjeah, I have seen (most of?) the anime and read the manga, but the plots are relatively simple and it just doesn't really work for me (the art is good though).

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  3. omg can't wait to see what you have cooked up for us in terms of releases and translations. color me intrigued.

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