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Body Blows

A Joe Grundy Mystery

by Marc Strange

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list price: $11.99
also available: eBook
category: Fiction
published: 2009
publisher: Dundurn Press
  • Short-listed, Shamus Award for Best Paperback Original Novel
  • Winner, Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Paperback Original
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Winner of the 2010 Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Paperback Original, short-listed for the 2010 Shamus Award for Best Paperback Original Novel
Ex-boxer Joe Grundy is embroiled in the intrigues of his own boss, millionaire Leo Alexander, the owner of Vancouver’s Lord Douglas Hotel. Somebody has murdered Leo’s live-in servant and not-so-secret lover, and Grundy has to get to the bottom of the incident in order to clear the man he’s forged a bond with since first coming to work for him as security for the hotel. But Leo’s past serves up more surprises than Grundy bargained for.
It seems Leo has had a life full of death, jilted mistresses, spurned spouses, sharp business deals, and explosive relationships with estranged children. Another corpse pops up, Leo is arrested and jailed, and Grundy takes more hits to his body and psyche than perhaps even he can handle.
Thoughts of real and imagined death are stalking the corridors of the Lord Douglas, and Joe Grundy has to keep swinging to stay alive and remain sane.

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Contributor notes

Marc Strange was the co-creator of the long-running television series The Beachcombers. As a character actor, he has appeared in numerous television shows and films, most recently in the cable television science-fiction show ReGenesis. His first book, Sucker Punch was nominated for the Arthur Ellis Award for best first mystery novel. His novel Body Blows followed in 2009 and won the Edgar Allan Poe Award for best original paperback.

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Editorial Reviews

This tough, non-nonsense novel has a lot going for it. Marc Strange...has produced an excellent plot, terrific characters and steely dialogue. They all meld nicely.

— Record, The

Fast-paced and hard-hitting, Body Blows is classic hard-boiled, with colourful characters, snappy dialogue and a cynical point of view. If you like Hemingway, youll like Marc Strange.

— Sherbrooke Record

This is the second novel by Strange featuring ex-boxer Joe Grundy and his boss, Leo Alexander. The first one was a fine debut, nominated for an Arthur Ellis Award. This one is even better, with a great Vancouver setting and a really solid story that takes us back into Leo's personal life...Strange, an actor as well as a television writer, knows how to keep the dialogue moving, and while his characters are light, they're not slight. The action keeps moving and Vancouver is the perfect backdrop. Body Blows is a great light novel for a weekend away.

— Globe & Mail, The

...a subtle blend of hardboiled style and noir sensibility in a satisfying who-done-it. Author Strange skillfully tangles webs of failure and deceit behind the sunny superficiality of familiar Canadian character types, giving them credible personalities. I'm planning a trip to my favourite bookseller for a copy of Sucker Punch, first of the Joe Grundy series.

— Murder Out There

The plot of Body Blows zips along as smoothly and cleverly as Marc Strange's first Joe Grundy novel, Sucker Punch...but the real charm of what's turning into a series is Joe Grundy himself, a quasi-tough guy who's smart, loyal, shrewd but easy-going, and blessedly witty-a pleasure to hang out with for a few hours inside a book.

— London Free Press, The

This is a catchy story with a great setting.

— National Post, The

Strange tells the story in a clear, energetic style with astute timing for action, reflection and heart. Body Blows is a knockout.

— Hamilton Spectator, The
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About the Author

Marc Strange

Marc Strange is a writer and actor. He was co-creator of The Beachcombers (with L.S. Strange) and between 1972 and 1990 wrote, directed, and/or story-edited over seventy episodes. Strange is the author of Follow Me Down (ECW Press, 2010), Sucker Punch (Dundurn, 2007), which was shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel and Body Blows (Dundurn, 2009), winner of the Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Paperback Original. He lives in Toronto.
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