Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Shanks Commences by Robert Lopresti

(Cough. Cough. Clear away the cobwebs...)
It's been a while, but here's a review. A fine story by one of my favorite storytellers, Robert Lopresti - "Shanks Commences." If you don't know Shanks is Lopresti's series character - a mystery writer who solves mysteries he comes across/stumbles over. In this case, the stumbling happens on a college campus. Shanks is there to receive and honorary degree, give a commencement address, and, most importantly, donate some of his books to the school's library. The librarian had been a professor - gave Shanks a D in English and looks down his nose at the man now regardless of Shanks' success as an author. Lots of people might want him dead. And dead is how he's ultimately found.

Is Shanks a suspect? Well, he has to be at first, but don't worry. He's more into helping to uncover the real killer. And with a witty repartee with his wife, and some smart alecky remarks to the official detective in charge of the investigation, this is exactly what he does. In any event, this is a humorous story in the current Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine.

Note also that Lopresti is a college librarian himself...