|Book||V00003793694||FIC BRETT, S.|
After a long period of 'resting', life is looking up for Charles Paris, who has been cast as the Ghost of Hamlet's Father and First Gravedigger in a new production of Hamlet. But rehearsals are fraught.nbsp; Ophelia is played by Katrina Selsey, who won the role through a television talent show.nbsp; Hamlet himself is also played by a reality TV contestant, Jared Root - and the two young stars have rather different views of celebrity and the theatre than the more experienced members of the cast.
But when the company reach the first staging post of their tour, the Grand Theatre Marlborough, matters get more serious, with one member of the company seriously injured in what appears to be an accident, and another dead.nbsp; Once again, Charles Paris is forced to don the mantle of amateur detective to get to the bottom of the mystery.
Simon Brett was born in Worcester Park, Surrey on October 28, 1945. He attended Dulwich College and then Wadham College, Oxford, where he studied English. Between 1967 and 1977, he was a producer with BBC Radio. He also spent a couple of years working for Thames Television.
In 1975, he published his first 'Charles Paris' novel. By 1979, Brett had become a full-time writer. He has written and edited children's books, humorous novels and several anthologies. In 1986, he introduced another sleuth: Mrs Pargeter.
As well as the Charles Paris and Mrs. Pargeter detective series, he is also the author of the radio and television series After Henry, the radio series No Commitments and the bestselling How to be a Little Sod . His novel A Shock to the System was filmed starring Michael Caine.
(Bowker Author Biography)
*Starred Review* The title of this theatrical thriller refers to both the interval between the last mystery starring actor-sleuth Charles Paris (16 years) and the British equivalent of intermission. At the interval during the first performance of a new production of Hamlet, Paris discovers a dead cast member in a dressing room. In the eighteenth installment of this series, Paris has ended a long period of involuntary unemployment (resting, in actor-speak) by landing the roles of the ghost of Hamlet's father and the first gravedigger. Things have changed since the last time Paris was summoned to the stage. For one thing, the younger actors tweet constantly, carry water bottles, and visit the gym, not the pub, in their free time. And Hamlet and Ophelia are played by, respectively, a reality TV star who can't project his voice and the winner of a TV talent show who wants to inject pop songs into Ophelia's scenes. What hasn't changed is Paris himself, still drinking and vowing not to drink, still trying to get back with his estranged (for good reason) wife, still loving his work, but resigned to how unfair the profession is. And Paris can still solve the crimes he stumbles across because he can prowl around the most hidden parts of a theater, unnoticed as only an actor with small parts can. Two Hamlets, two Ophelias, a range of jostling egos, stage history and lore, and the wry figure of Paris himself make this more than worth the price of admission.--Fletcher, Connie Copyright 2010 Booklist
Publisher's Weekly Review
Brett's actor-sleuth, Charles Paris, makes a long-overdue comeback in his droll 18th outing (after 1998's Dead Room Farce). Paris, a has-been, is delighted to get steady work in a new, offbeat English production of Hamlet, featuring reality-show stars Jared Root and Katrina Selsey as Hamlet and Ophelia, and set inside a gigantic model of the Danish prince's skull. Root's lack of acting talent raises the tension level on the production, as do his and Selsey's efforts to out-diva each other. Before long, an "accident" and a murder allow Paris the chance to play amateur sleuth again. Golden-age fans will appreciate the fair-play whodunit, which demonstrates that the form can be adapted to a contemporary setting. Satirical touches, such as Paris's reaction to a documentary about the 1455 Battle of St. Albans partially set in a shopping mall, keep the atmosphere on the lighter side. Brett has a rare gift for balancing humor and detection. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.