#434: Locked Room International is 30 – My Favourite 15 Books

LRI Thirty

Some months ago, in our podcast The Men Who Explain Miracles, first myself and then Dan chose our fifteen favourite locked room novels of all time.  In celebration of Locked Room International recently putting out their thirtieth fiction title, I have done essentially the same again, this time choosing solely from their catalogue: effectively, my personal picks for the ‘top half’ of their output to date.

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#91: The Moai Island Puzzle (1989) by Alice Arisugawa [trans. Ho-Ling Wong 2016]

Disclosure: I proof-read this book for Locked Room International in March 2016

Moai Island PuzzleChildren, incarnations of The Doctor, phases of the moon…generally I try not to play favourites.  But if I had to pick one crime fiction conceit above all others it would undoubtedly be a group of people on an island getting killed off one by one.  Sure, isolate them in some ancestral mansion via thunderstorm or on a train via unexpected snow and the effect is arguably the same, but there’s something about the island in itself that renders the idea all the more thrilling to my senses.  And so this Japanese island-set puzzle, the second collaboration between Locked Room International’s John Pugmire and translator and crime fiction blogger Ho-Ling Wong after last year’s excellent The Decagon House Murders, would be just what the doctor ordered if the medical profession ever thought of prescribing books for those of us with the thrill of fictional murder in our hearts.

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