“Method Murder” by Simon Brett

This short story was not impressive for me. The main character, Kenny Mountford, is an actor who wants wants to be respected.

And really that meant doing more theatre. For the more obscure and impenetrable the theatre work, the higher the integrity of the actors involved. This meant, in effect, working with one of a small list of trendy directors, directors who didn’t pander to the public by making their work accessible or simple entertaining.

That section made me laugh out loud, but that was pretty much the high point. One of these select directors tells Kenny that he will put him in a play, but first Kenny has to “become” the character by infiltrating a London gang, which he does.

The problem is Kenny is not bright, doesn’t see what the director’s up to, just goes along with the orders of the gang leader, but in the end he ends up better off than he was before. Maybe I’m not giving him enough credit.

And even I could see the ending coming.

This one didn’t hook me, but I won’t cross Simon Brett off my list entirely.

6,371 words
Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine March 1, 2011

2½ out of 5 stars


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