I found the first of Grey's Hardesty mysteries, The Butcher's Son—and it was riveting. Before I had even finished the book I started looking for any more. The earlier books were not the easiest to find, but I perservered and I can now say, with pride, that I have all the Dick Hardesty books with the exception of Paper Mirror; but I've just ordered it so I only have to be patient. =) Which isn't one of the virtues high on my personality list, unfortunately.
But I will get it and I will read it—and then I think I'll start the series all over this time going from 1 right through to 14. And while I've not been able to read them in order—there's that impatient streak showing up—I didn't find it a problem... although I was dying to read the book where Dick meets Jonathan. I totally loved it by the way.
Until I do my re-read the thirteen Dick Hardesty books I have, are now on my finished-love 'em-going to keep 'em shelves. So I'm quite content.
And just 'cause I love to make lists the order of the books is as follows:
- The Butcher's Son
- The 9th Man
- The Bar Watcher
- The Hired Man
- The Good Cop
- The Bottle Ghosts
- The Dirt Peddler
- The Role Players
- The Popsicle Tree
- The Paper Mirror
- The Dream Ender
- The Angel Singers
- The Secret Keeper
- The Peripheral Son
In The Butcher's Son, the first of Grey's Dick Hardesty Mysteries, the character of Dick Hardesty grabbed hold of my imagination. Grey excels at building finely-wrought tension, at carrying the reader through each scene, each chapter. I found myself virulently disliking 'the butcher', and getting totally caught up in what was happening; there was laughter, anger, and even heartbreak.
By the end of the book I was on the edge of my seat which, for a mystery fan, is always a great place to be. The ending was extremely satisfying; I was on the hunt for more from this very talented author.
With The Butcher's Son, and my subsequent foray into the other books, Dick Hardesty has become one of my favourite contemporary detectives, although to be fair the others I've read this year—Grey's Elliott Smith... and John, I cannot forget about John!, Anthony Bidulka's Russell Quant, and Scott Sherman's Kevin Connor—are also excellent series as well.
Now however, sadly, all but Dorien Grey's Elliott Smith and John mysteries have come to an end. I loved reading them, I needed to get to the last book in the series' but I'm now left feeling... sad, kind of empty...
But happily I do, and can, easily re-read books that I enjoyed as much as I have all of these. It's good to be such a reader.