Gretel And The Case Of The Missing Frog Prints

Gretel And The Case Of The Missing Frog Prints

A Brothers Grimm Mystery

Book - 2015
Average Rating:
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"Bavaria, 1776. When Albrecht Durer the Much Much Younger's Frog Prints go missing, he knows exactly where to turn for help. Gretel (yes, that Gretel), now thirty-five and still living with her gluttonous brother Hans, is the country's most famous private investigator, and she leaps at the opportunity to travel to cosmopolitan Nuremberg to take on the case. But amid the hubbub of the city's annual sausage festival, Gretel struggles to find any clues that point toward the elusive thief" --Dust jacket flap.
Publisher: New York : Pegasus Crime, c2015.
Edition: First Pegasus Books cloth edition.
ISBN: 9781605986722
1605986720
Characteristics: 235 pages ; 24 cm.

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LESeymour
Apr 07, 2017

This is decidedly cute. A re-envisioning of the whole Hansel and Gretel series. Now they're grown up and have lives...well, at least she does! Her brother's a lush!

The series is cute. I admit I started in the wrong place with this book, but I make no apologies. Now, I will dash back and read the others.

FindingJane Oct 30, 2016

This take on two old and familiar Grimm characters finds us with the adult Hansel and Gretel. Their time with the witch has left both of them with a serious addiction to sugar, unquenchable appetites and seriously expanding waistlines. Ms. Brackston gives us a Gretel as incisive and intelligent as she is vain, rotund and sharp tongued. She remembers that it was Gretel who was the smart one, after all, the one who figured out the witch’s game and rescued her hapless brother from being made into a roast. Gretel now applies that same canniness to solving crimes with flair and rather unusual methods.

I’ll admit that I was initially baffled by certain passages within this novel. There are mentions of previous “cases” that Gretel handled. Yet this book is supposed to be the first of a series. Was there a prequel I’d missed somewhere?

No, that’s not the situation. Ms. Brackston is simply trying to set up our notion of Gretel as a competent detective. She proves more than masterful at handling the various ludicrous scenarios that happen to her. With her incompetent porcine brother Hans as a dim-witted Watson and the ridiculously named Kingsman Kapitan Strudel playing Lestrade to her Sherlock at her side and in her way, respectively, the story is clever, fun and genuinely entertaining as comedy and crime novel.

What really sets this story apart is it obsessive and intricate attention to food. Gretel is enamored of luxury, in the way of elaborate wigs and coiffure, elegant clothes and luxurious accommodations. But it is the adoration of comestibles that permeates this novel. Hansel and Gretel love to eat (perhaps an unconscious desire left over from their starved childhood) and Hansel is either dining on good food or thinking about eating when he’s not considering the case. This obsession isn’t done to excess so there’s no chance of the reader being bored. (But it’s difficult not to be swayed when you read about the intricate and demanding preparation of the world’s longest sausage. You can practically taste the pork and onions.)

Indeed, Ms. Brackston proves to have an eye to detail throughout the book as she describes scenarios, a crowded street, clothing, facial features, etc. The cleanliness of a room after a hobgoblin is done with it is laid out with descriptions of gleaming woodwork, the smell of wax polish, groomed rug tassels, clean linen and so forth.

If you’re looking for a comedy/crime thriller á la Jasper Fforde, then look no further. You’ve got your woman.

c
claudiaj79
Feb 19, 2015

This book was a little difficult to get through. You have very little, if any, background on the characters; the main character seems too caught up in other things to really solve the mystery. Too many sub-plots, not enough information, and then when the mystery is solved, it seems half hearted, and the suspect thrown in at the last minute. I will say however, it did have moments of levity (though few and far between); if you are wanting a book that is offbeat and a bit quirky, then by all means, this one is for you. However, if you want a real mystery to solve, I suggest something (anything) else.

a
athena14
Feb 10, 2015

The Brothers Grimm crossed with mystery writer Wolf Haas, drowned in a ocean of schlag.

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