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Book Review: The Case of the Duplicate Daughter by Erle Stanley Gardner (1960)

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Synopsis: When Carter Gilman disappears from the breakfast table, his daughter, Muriell, investigates and discovers a broken chair, spilled paint and $10,000 on the floor of the garage. Per her father's previous instructions, she avoids calling the police and, instead, reaches out to Perry Mason . Mason learns Carter is unharmed but also comes to believe his second wife, Nancy, is being blackmailed by a detective over the legitimacy of her daughter, Glamis. When the detective is found murdered, Carter becomes the primary suspect and Mason is tasked with defending him. However, Mason's hands become tied when Carter refuses to tell him the full truth because he believes one of his family members is the real killer. Review: This was one of the books I picked up at our local library last weekend and, thanks to having time to read while barbecuing, I was able to finish it last night. To be honest, I didn't think I'd enjoy the book when I first started reading it. This is b

Movie Review: Underwater (2020)

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Synopsis : A research and drilling operation located deep in the ocean suffers a water breach following an earthquake. There are a handful of survivors but, when they run out of escape pods, a group of them must make a treacherous walk across the ocean floor to a different station. While doing this, they discover a swarm of man-eating sea creatures blocking their way. Who's in it? The movie stars Kristen Stewart , Vincent Cassel , Jessica Henwick , John Gallagher Jr. and T. J. Miller . Review: I had time to watch a movie with my wife yesterday evening and, even though I had selected one while at the library, decided to pick one out of our streaming library instead (I didn't feel like getting off the couch to get the DVD). I had found this movie a couple days earlier and, since my wife thought it sounded interesting, picked it. Overall, it ended up being a good choice. The thing that I liked most about this film was the underwater setting. It set an ominous tone for the entir

Book Review: The Case of the Waylaid Wolf (1959)

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Synopsis: When secretary Arlene Ferris' car doesn't start after work, she cautiously accepts a ride from her boss' son, Loring Lamont, despite knowing his reputation with women. When Loring takes her to his family's country retreat and attempts to rape her, Arlene gains the upper hand and drives away in Loring's car. Expecting to be fired the next day, Arlene goes to Perry Mason for help filing charges against her attacker. However, when Loring is found murdered, Arlene becomes the primary suspect. More importantly, her story doesn't seem to match the evidence. Review: I checked this book out from the local library a few days ago and, since it was raining, was able to finish it yesterday morning. After reading it, I have to say it is one of my favorite Perry Mason novel so far. The murder mystery surrounding Loring Lamont was much more intriguing than expected because, even though it was obvious Mason's client wasn't the killer (from the book filling

Movie Review: The Frozen Ground (2013)

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Synopsis: When 17-year-old prostitute Cindy Paulson accuses a prominent baker and family man, Robert Hansen, of kidnapping and raping her, the local authorities don't believe her story, especially when he provides a solid alibi. However, after meeting with her, Alaska State Trooper Jack Halcombe believes she escaped the clutches of a serial killer and pursues her lead. However, a reluctant district attorney and his key witness' lack of stability threaten to shut him down. Who's in it? The movie stars Nicolas Cage , Vanessa Hudgens , John Cusack , 50 Cent and Kurt Fuller . Review: My wife found this movie at the library a couple days ago and, while it sounded like something she would enjoy more than me, I did decide to watch it with her last night. Overall, I have to say I thought it was a good movie. Since this was based on a true story, there was some risk of the movie being a bit too predictable, especially since there was no mystery about who the killer was. Fortunat

Movie Review: Riddle (2013)

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Synopsis: Three years after her younger brother, Nathan, disappeared while on a joy ride with two of his high school classmates, Holly Teller believes she saw him at a farmer's market and determined to investigate, ends up in the dying town of Riddle, Pennsylvania. Once there, she finds the local sheriff and most townspeople are unwilling to help her because they are protecting their own dark secret. Who's in it? The movie stars Elisabeth Harnois , Val Kilmer , Diora Baird , William Sadler and Bryan Lillis. Review: My wife went to the library yesterday and, while there, picked out this movie. Even though I hadn't heard of it, I decided to watch it with her last night. At first, I thought it would be better than expected but, unfortunately, it did end up being a bit of a letdown overall. The premise itself wasn't terrible, though I think I've seen more than my fair share of abduction movies at this point (my wife seems to be obsessed with them lately for some rea

Book Review: The Case of the Singing Skirt by Erle Stanley Gardner (1959)

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Synopsis : When Ellen Robb is wrongfully terminated from her job as a lounge singer and cigarette seller and accused of stealing money, she asks Perry Mason for help. When she comes to him later with a black eye and gun planted in her bag, Mason tries to pull a fast one on her employer, George Anclitas, by switching the weapon with one he had in his safe. When his client is predictably accused of murder a short while later, Mason is surprised to learn the fatal bullet was traced back to the gun he gave her. Review: I checked this book out from our local library about a week ago and, as I suspected, it was a fairly quick read, especially since I had some free time while sitting outside grilling. I've been a bit disappointed by the last couple Perry Mason books I've read. That was not the case this time. One of the things I liked most about this book was the way it was hard to tell if his client was really innocent. As much as she liked to portray herself as a victim, it was al

Movie Review: Woman Wanted (1935)

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Synopsis: On her way to prison after being wrongfully convicted of murder, Ann Gray is involved in a car accident orchestrated by the group of mobsters that framed her and escapes. She hitches a ride with an engaged attorney, Tony Baxter, who agrees to hide her from both the police and the mobsters while trying to clear her name. Who's in it? The movie stars Maureen O'Sullivan , Joel McCrea , Lewis Stone , Louis Calhern and Adrienne Ames . Review: I had a little bit of time to watch a movie this morning before work and, mostly because the plot of this one reminded me a bit of what I'd expect from a Perry Mason book, decided to give it a try. Overall, I have to say the movie met my expectations. The main story was entertaining and offered a good mix of drama and comedy, especially when Tony (McCrea) was trying to hide Ann (O'Sullivan) in his small apartment with the help of his butler, Peedles ( Robert Greig ). His on-again-off-again fiancée (Ames) being there only m