A Shot in the Dark (Constable Twitten #1) by Lynne Truss

A Shot in the Dark (Constable Twitten #1)

It's 1957, and the famed theater critic A. S. Crystal has come to the British seaside resort of Brighton with something other than the local production of A Shilling in the Meter on his mind. Sitting in the Brighton Royal Theater with Constable Twitten, Crystal intends to tell the detective the secret he knows about the still-unsolved Aldersgate Stick-Up case of 1945. And yet, just before Crystal names the criminal mastermind involved, he's shot ...

Details A Shot in the Dark (Constable Twitten #1)

TitleA Shot in the Dark (Constable Twitten #1)
Release DateNov 6th, 2018
PublisherBloomsbury USA
GenreMystery, Fiction, Crime, Historical, Historical Fiction, Cozy Mystery

Reviews A Shot in the Dark (Constable Twitten #1)

  • Maureen
    Thanks to www.shotsmag.co.uk for sending me a paperback copy in exchange for an honest review *In the first of a new series, Lynne Truss successfully blends crime with comedy to produce a highly entertaining read.Brighton on the south coast of England is the location for ‘A Shot in the Dark’ and it begins with the re-telling of the infamous Middle Street Massacre of 1951, which brought instant fame and adulation to the newly appointed Inspect...
  • Susan
    This is the first of a proposed crime series, set in Brighton. We begin in 1951, with the ‘Middle Street Massacre,’ where Inspector Steine (pronounced ‘Steen’) believes he has wiped out crime in the town, when two major gangs manage to wipe each other out. He has rather lived off this event, which was made into a film and we meet up with him, six years later, enjoying a pleasant and delusional existence as a minor celebrity. However, desp...
  • Gail C.
    My thanks to NetGalley and Bloomsbury USA, a division of Bloomsbury Publishing for providing an advanced digital copy of A Shot in the Dark by Lynne Truss. While it is classified as a mystery, I found it to belong more in the humor category. The mystery as it exists is secondary to the story itself, as told by the unseen author.Throughout the book the author is a strong presence, becoming almost a character in the story itself through use of pare...
  • Kate Baxter
    Ahh, where to begin?...This is definitely not your usual cozy mystery - mystery for sure, but way more farcical with a grand touch of Keystone Cops. The setting is Brighton, 1957. A bumbling Police Inspector is still basking in his presumed glory days of 1951 regarding an event which in his mind, eliminated all organized crime in the community. He just wants everyone to get along and peaceably go about their business. Of course, that's the perfec...
  • Latkins
    Lynne Truss is perhaps best known for her popular punctuation guide Eats, Shoots & Leaves, but she’s also a novelist and writer, and this first in a new series of farcical, funny murder mysteries is loosely based on her BBC Radio 4 series Inspector Steine. Set in 1957 in Brighton, the star of the book is Constable Twitten, an eager and intelligent young policeman whose ambitions are thwarted by Inspector Steine, who is still resting on his laur...
  • OLT
    As an often clueless and sometimes provincial American, I feel I may have missed some of the British humor and allusions in this novel by Truss. But no matter. I caught enough to have had a good deal of fun reading this mystery.Yes, I said "fun reading this mystery". Because it's not your usual serious "bad guys do bad things and the good guys work hard to solve the mystery and put the bad guys away" type of mystery. As a matter of fact, it's a b...
  • Lori
    Inspector Steine (pronounced Steen) solved the Middle Street Massacre in 1951, still glorying in its resolution 6 years later when Constable Twitten enters the Brighton police force. Theatre Critic A.S. Crystal knows a secret concerning the unsolved 1945 Aldersgate Stick-Up case and goes to the theatre intending to share his secret with the constable when Crystal himself is shot in his seat. Constable Twitten and partner Sgt. Jim Brunswick set ou...
  • Cathleen
    A Shot in the Dark was a droll romp, inspired by the golden age of mysteries. Lynne Truss, most well-known as the author of Eats, Shoots, and Leaves, draws from her sense of humor in this book, as well. Truss has a flair for characterization and dialogue. Rather than being a straightforward police procedural, this is a send-up of mid-century crime novels, complete with an entrenched inspector, a dutiful seargeant and an inspired but irritating co...
  • Rachel Hall
    Although I read the odd cosy crime novel and enjoy the comical capers of Charles Paris on BBC Radio 4, I had never heard of Lynne Truss’s Inspector Steine and Constable Twitten series set in 1950’s Brighton. This book came recommended to me by a fond listener and was described as “witty” and “storytelling genius” and whilst A Shot In The Dark had its moments, hitting the spot with its sharp observation on occasions, a painfully slow p...
  • Maine Colonial
    Thanks to the publisher, Bloomsbury, for providing an advance review copy.The junior detective who is much smarter than his superiors is common in crime fiction. Here, Lynne Truss exaggerates the notion on both ends. Constable Twitten is so clever (and so eager to show it) that despite graduating the police academy with honors, he’s been transferred out of six squads in three months. Sergeant Brunswick is the usual well-meaning and only slightl...
  • Sid Nuncius
    Lynn Truss is an excellent writer with a fine comic sense and I have enjoyed a lot of her work very much, but I'm afraid I was a little disappointed in A Shot In the Dark.The Book is a "crime mystery" but also essentially a farce. Set in Brighton in the late 50s, a hopelessly stupid and vain police Inspector turns a blind eye to all crime, completely convinced that he has eradicated it from Brighton. A brilliant, socially inept new constable arri...
  • Elaine Tomasso
    I would like to thank Netgalley and Bloomsbury Publishing Plc (UK & ANZ) for an advance copy of A Shot in the Dark, the first novel adapted from the Inspector Steyne radio series.Brighton 1957 is a quiet place after the Middle Street Massacre of 1951 when the town's criminals wiped themselves out. Inspector Steyne is happy to preside over a crime free environment although Sergeant Brunswood isn't so sure, especially with a rash of burglaries, and...
  • Mike Sumner
    "Lumme!" A word right out of the 50s. I can hear my mum saying it, when she was rather surprised. Constable Twitten uses it too, in this romp through Brighton in the 50s. Remember Bob-a-Job week? Ha! My memories of being a cub and boy scout! Knickerbocker Glories? Vim (the cleaning variety)? cockles and mussels in vinegar, saucy postcards, reprehensible Max Miller jokes, Stick-ups (not hold-ups)? It's all here in this comical, witty crime fiction...
  • Christopher Roden
    Loved the radio series, and was glad to see this moved to bookform. Good read. Looking forward to many more.
  • Anjana
  • Julia
    Now, I will preface this review by saying that I am a huge fan of Lynne Truss – both of her non-fiction works and of her Radio 4 series Inspector Steine. When I saw that the same characters were now available in book form, I was really keen to read.There are many positives in this but, unfortunately (for me, and anyone else who has heard the series), there is a problem: A Shot in the Dark is largely a re-hash of some of the key points in the fi...
  • John Damelio
    I am always on the lookout for a good cozy mystery series and I appreciate the sometimes odd or quirky British sense of humor (at least to Americans) but A Shot In The Dark is written in such a manner that the story borders on being unreadable. A prime example of this is the author's fascination with the word nebulous. I can honestly say I have read scores of books where this word does not appear even once, but it becomes apparent that author Lyn...
  • Robin
    While I was hesitant to pick up this novel – Truss is best known for her grammar book Eats, Shoots and Leaves - I was smitten by her introduction where she confessed her goal of becoming a member of the Detection Club. After reading that, I was all in, and the book took me the rest of the way on its own. This is the kind of funny, dry, intelligent humor the Brits do so well, and the set up is delicious.The novel is set in Brighton in 1957, and ...
  • TheTinyBookery
    I will admit that I did indeed judge this book by its cover and was genuinely intrigued by its description- both of which, magically, do the work no justice whilst simultaneously being perfectly suited to it. Truss is clearly an accomplished writer with a resume that speaks for itself. Her credentials are not up for debate or of any real import here. But her ability certainly is! I love linguistic prowess and this book certainly has it. The narra...
  • Carin
    You may already know Lynne Truss from her phenomenal book about grammar, Eats, Shoots, and Leaves. If so, you may be surprised to hear that her newest book is a historical British mystery. But you won't be surprised that it is filled with period slang and she has a lot of fun with language throughout. But if language isn't your thing, no worries, the plot is rollicking enough to carry you along without dwelling on what is really a minor aside.In ...
  • Mina
    This first book in a proposed series by Lynne Truss reads almost like a parody of a Golden Age mystery, in that it’s very aware of the conventions of the genre and they way they’re employed in setting up the central mystery. As such, the characters are more archetypes than fully drawn personalities. In spite of small flourishes that aim to differentiate our leading men, they come across as milquetoast Brits. Again, I think that’s rather the...
  • Unseen Library
    I received a copy of A Shot in the Dark from Bloomsbury Australia to review.From Lynne Truss, one of England’s most creative minds, comes A Shot in the Dark, a hilarious take on the historical murder mystery that sets three fantastic and exaggerated police characters against a sinister and surprising criminal mastermind.Brighton, 1957. Following a terrible massacre that saw the death of every member of two rival gangs some years before, the cit...
  • Sharon
    I'd only heard of Lynne Truss from her bestselling grammar book, Eats, Shoots, and Leaves, and was surprised to see her trying her hand at crime fiction. Nevertheless, I was happy to receive an advance electronic copy from the publisher through NetGalley.A Shot in the Dark is cleverly told in a tongue-in-cheek, humorous style. The characters are fun: bungling cops, colorful criminals, a foul-smelling victim whom no one will miss. The setting is 1...
  • 2shay
    Review by 2shay..........This book was fairly entertaining, but “wryly entertaining” is a stretch, in my opinion. Maybe it’s just that I don’t always understand the British sense of humor, or more likely, I thought it crossed the line from funny into a pretty deep well of silliness. I was drowning in silky dialog, silly characters and silly situations.What we have is an author who was challenged by colleagues to write a mystery that is so...
  • Jeannine
    Set in 1950s Brighton, A Shot in the Dark is a humorous cozy featuring 3 very different policemen: Inspector Steine, head of the Brighton police force, and seriously opposed to doing any actual police work, preferring to rest on the laurels of the Middle Street Massacre that supposedly wiped out all crime in Brighton anyway. Doing the actual police work are the experienced Sargent Brunswick and brand new from London, Constable Twitten who was tra...
  • Peter
    I must admit I was concerned when I saw that Lynne Truss was having a go at writing crime but I was at that point unaware that this book has its origins in 4 series broadcast on Radio 4. By then end of the first couple of chapters my feelings were confirmed as the y are to my mind a little muddled as if someone had given an instruction manual on how to set up a crime novel BUT after this the book takes off properly. I am not going to summarise th...
  • Helen Howerton
    Lots of characters, interacting plots, and lots of comedy and comedic situations can be found in “A Shot in the Dark,” a new historical mystery by author Lynn Truss, set in 50s Brighton. Who killed the theater critic? Why is the Inspector such a yob? And finally, whatever is Constable Twitten (and that name pretty much fits this character) going to do? Will justice triumph? The problem I have with this book, especially in regards to that pesk...
  • Pat Yosca
    I received an ARC of this book from Bloomsbury in a giveaway.This crime novel takes place in Brighton in the fifties with quite a cast of characters! Truss entertains us with a drama critic whom everyone hates and therefore the first to be killed while he is reviewing a play by an equally hateful playwright. As the police investigate we meet Inspector Steine who is infamous for stopping crime in a most unusual manner and is resting on his theory ...
  • Roberta
    Detective Inspector Steine (pronounced Steen) came to Brighton in 1951 to clean up corruption, crime and the Laughing Policeman from the arcade. After the Middle Street Massacre, when two big crime families kill each other, Steine thinks he has eliminated crime in Brighton.Six years later, a theater critic name A.S. Crystal shows up with an acid temperament and noxious body odor. He already hated the play he is to review, "A Shilling in the Meter...
  • Katherine
    A. S. Crystal is a famous theater critic. As a result of his less than stellar reviews, he has a few enemies. Crystal and Constable Twitten are sitting next to one another at the Brighton Royal Theater. They are conversing amicably when Crystal is about to reveal the identity of the person responsible for the Aldersgate Stick Up, a case which was never solved. Suddenly Crystal is shot dead in his seat at the theater.I am sorry to say, this story ...