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“There are people who are skeptical about human nature and people who have a deep trust in human nature. And a great number of people somewhere in between. How does real life deal with these different kinds of people? This question is just one of the many interesting problems which are reflected in Dabbling in Crime, Shelly Reuben’s new collection of short fiction.” Albert“There are people who are skeptical about human nature and people who have a deep trust in human nature. And a great number of people somewhere in between. How does real life deal with these different kinds of people? This question is just one of the many interesting problems which are reflected in Dabbling in Crime, Shelly Reuben’s new collection of short fiction.” Albert Ashforth. Author of The Rendition and On EdgeDuring the period when Shelly Reuben was investigating arson as a private detective and certified fire investigator, she came across individuals and events that tantalized her mind and touched her heart. Add to that a vivid imagination and an indelible belief that, even if virtue does not always triumph, it will eventually manage to hobble, stumble or stride triumphantly across the finish line—and you have these eleven stories. Originally published in The Forensic Examiner and The Evening Sun.Within the pages of Dabbling in Crime, meet:• Dante No-Last-Name-No-Middle-Initial, a throwaway kid hiding under a music school staircase, with a damaged heart and the talent of a virtuoso violinist.• Wealthy, beloved Jimmy Lillyjohn, burned to death on the top floor of his mansion after a lighted cigarette falls from his fingers onto his lonely mattress.• Mountainous, mean-spirited Hilda Pomfrey, who bullies everyone in her sphere, including her tree-loving, milquetoast husband Herb.• Honorable Police Chief Joseph Steinbeck, who reluctantly participates in a library event, and is almost murdered when he is checked out as a “Human Book.”• Prosecutor Edward Nygh, who hides evidence of arson to convict the wrong man, and his reluctant assistant who travels through time to revisit her past....

Title : Dabbling in Crime: Death of a Violinist and other Stories
Author :
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ISBN : 9781483574844
Format Type : ebook
Number of Pages : 169 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Dabbling in Crime: Death of a Violinist and other Stories Reviews

  • Justine
    2018-12-18 04:02

    I found this to be a delightful and captivating collection of stories, with both an intrigue for mystery-solving, as well as dynamic character sketches. Shelly Reuben paints a fascinating picture with each story in her Dabbling in Crime, each short story unique and enticing. I'd recommend this book as something you could read straight through, cover to cover or also one you can hop around from story to story as the reader fancies. Her stories capture the funny quirks about people, as well as their nobler aspirations and our ideals of virtue and goodness, as well as the existent darker side, such as seen in my personal favorite, "The Death of the a Violinist." A terrific read all-around!

  • Vandana
    2019-01-10 04:53

    Dabbling in Crime is a collection of eleven short stories by Shelly Reuben. I picked out this book from Story Cartel as it was recommended for fans of O. Henry, John Steinbeck, Arthur Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie. Giving such high expectations to the reader always puts the work under great scrutiny and many authors falter under this. Not Shelly Reuben! The stories are well written with intricate character formation, unique motives and a pinch of humour. The ending of the stories are also very distinct giving us a whiff of O. Henry stories.Shelly Reuben has succeeded in writing eleven stories that are diverse yet equally good making it difficult to pick a favourite. Each story has something unique that strikes a chord with us. Death of a Violinist gives us Dante, a violin prodigy who gets tangled in unfortunate incidents beyond his control. Tsk. Tsk is a study into the working of human mind, the choices which we make and living with these decisions. The protagonist of this story and her plight is unforgettable. Herb Pomfrey in Mrs. Pomfrey’s Elderberry Wine fills us with sympathy to his plight and will leave us rooting for him, irrespective of the morality of his actions. The same can be said about Liliana Tannis in The Jewellery Counter. Lee Brill, a has-been actress addicted to fame and struggling with her declining popularity in Never a Cross Word is also a memorable character. My Beautiful, Beautiful Child is a heart wrenching story of a father stalking the murderer of his daughter. My personal favourites are You Again and The One Thing You Can Count On. You Again tells the story of a lawyer calling her younger self for advice in making important life decisions. The One Thing You Can Count On introduces us to Tierney and Doe Madrigal, identical twins and best friends and the tragedy that changed their life forever. Shelly Reuben has magnificently portrayed the effects of various crimes in the story through subtle changes in the character behaviour. Even this small changes gives us an elaborate view into the working of the minds of the characters.This book is an entertaining and fast paced read for anyone. Even if you are the kind of person who dislikes big and elaborate plots or parallel story lines or novels spanning pages and pages, you will still enjoy this short and sweet read. For seasoned readers, my advice is not to miss this book. So get your copy today and start reading.

  • Lindaschwebke
    2019-01-11 02:01

    I first read these intriguing stories when they appeared in the Forensic Examiner. It seemed odd to me that a professional crime journal would feature works whose literary merits surely deserved a wider audience and one that appreciated writing in the tradition of Dickens and O Henry. Thankfully, the stories have reincarnated in the form of an anthology entitled Dabbling in Crime. Reuben has a special way with language. She infuses tired old expressions, metaphors and clichés with a punch and sizzle. Reuben also has a special way with plot and action. Her narrative fools you again and again. Just when you settle in to her buffet of delicious images, characters and settings, Reuben pulls the tablecloth out from under you and leaves your mouth a gap from revelations and outcomes that even the most imaginative reader never could predict. Reuben is a Coney Island of a writer; she delights, surprises, renews and shocks. And if that isn’t enough, she reaffirms our faith in good old fashioned notions of justice, right and wrong. If you are fed up with the junky monotonous Pablum, devoid of moral or ethical grounding, that we are fed day in and day out, sit down and feast on these irresistible morsels filled with mystery and crime. You will come away feeling satisfied that the evil get their just desserts in a world that more often than not skewers the innocent and pure. flagcomment · see reviewEdit ReviewFRIEND REVIEWSRecommend This Book None of your friends have reviewed this book yet.

  • Charles Reuben
    2019-01-13 06:57

    Shelly Reuben is a master of the short story and “Dabbling in Crime” is a collection of some of her finest work. The 11 stories in this book were once only available to those who were lucky enough to stumble upon them in “The Forensic Examiner” and “The Evening Sun” (a daily newspaper based in upstate New York).Thankfully, Ms. Reuben’s short stories are now available in a handsome paperback book recently released by Bernard Street Books. "Dabbling in Crime" can also be downloaded as an e-book through the major electronic publishing outlets. I found the stories to be perfectly suited for my daily commute to work, as well as a pleasant way to spend an idle hour or two.The characters in her stories seem so real that there are times you wish you could meet them in person and her plots are so intricately woven and unpredictable, that you can’t help but say “wow, I didn’t see that coming.”Ms. Reuben’s writing style is reminiscent of Gustave Flaubert, with its minimalist style, yet poignant details. The bad guys in her books are insidiously evil, and the good guys always seem to find a way to triumph in the end, even if they have to break the law to reach the higher moral ground. "Dabbling in Crime" is a book to be read and reread and passed on to those who think that the short story is dead. Clearly, the short story is very much alive and, thanks to Ms. Reuben’s Herculean efforts, it is bound to make a comeback.

  • Richaed Kennison
    2019-01-05 04:04

    Shelly Ruben is not a new author for me. I have read several of her novels and at one time was privileged to read a number of her concise and often humors essays on America culture. It is the humor and the ability to tell a story with a minimum number of words that is once again displayed in “Dabbling in Crime” The crimes in this book contain the usual motives for murder Although several fit another category. In the Krakatoa by Gilbert and Sullivan the High Executioner sings a song of compiling a list of people that would not be missed ( all in good fun). However the idea is similar to a current saying that is popular – “some people just need killing” In other words some people would not only be missed but also the world would be a better place with them gone. This may sound like a harsh judgment but read the stories and judge for yourselves. All the stories in the book are good and it would be difficult to pick out a favorite but one caught my attention for two reasons. It is the story in which the older self telephones it younger self. It would seem that most writers would have the younger self call the older self for advice. On a personal level as a person over eighty , the topics and impacts could be Hugh. Just thinking of the possibilitys gives me a headache. In any event “ Dabbling in Crime” provide an entailing read.

  • JHFK21
    2019-01-14 23:46

    I tend to think of Shelly Reuben as one of the greatest, if underappreciated, writers currently in the market, and she lives up to my expectations once again with Dabbling in Crime, a collection of short mysteries that take the despair of crime and counter it with twinkling and oh-so romantic joy.Across 11 stories, Shelly Reuben gives us powerful emotional insights into her characters' lives: their love, their fear, and their pain- with each entry serving as an intelligent exploration of how people rise up to struggle against the horror of a crime that has invaded their lives. They might succeed or fail to different degrees, but each character displays a beauty that makes them worth knowing. And in most cases, a beauty worth loving.I can't wait to see what Shelly Reuben has in store for us next.

  • Beatrice de Winter
    2018-12-21 01:45

    Dabbling in Crime is a lovely collection of fun, entertaining short stories by Shelly Reuben. Her clever whit and creative word play make reading these adventures thoroughly enjoyable. I found 'Tsk. Tsk.' to be the most unique and compelling one of the bunch, mirroring the writing style of her earlier novels such as Origin and Cause and Spent Matches. Her background as a private investigator working with law enforcement and fire investigation provides an unusual amount of detailed accuracy in her work. If you are someone who enjoys true crime-type stories and fiction together, you will definitely enjoy Dabbling in Crime.

  • Elaine Schuman Safchik
    2019-01-08 05:56

    Shelly Reuben’s Dabbling in Crime is a book of very entertaining short stories. I find her writing to be quick and clever. She is descriptive and allows the reader to capture a true visual of each scene. In “Never a Cross Word,” the characters come to life. Their personalities shine through the pages and the story touches your heart. Thank you Shelly, for these wonderful adventures.

  • Ana Martirosyan
    2019-01-09 05:47

    In this delightful collection of short stories Shelly Reuben masterfully paints vivid and living characters with very few precise brush strokes. The author's wit and humour combined with the suspense make the stories a true pleasure to read! Reuben is an inspiring story-teller and the message that she sends is that kindness prevails.

  • Joan Vreeland
    2018-12-31 07:12

    Just finished reading Shelly Reuben's latest book, "Dabbling in Crime", a delightful compilation of short stories with unforgettable and quirky characters mixed in with some crime and comedy.Each chapter brought different people, places and intrigue. Two thumbs up, Ms. Reuben!

  • Diane Fishman
    2019-01-12 03:50

    It doesn’t take long for Reuben to immerse you into the depth of her characters – even though the stories are short. They – the fire chief, the punk prodigy, the avenging father, etc. -- come alive with amusing, and offbeat attributes. And, when they’re done and the story is over, you wish they were still in the room with you. Her delightful style of writing – language and pace - keeps you engaged. And the collection is a wonderful surprise at every turn of the page – you don’t always see who or what’s ‘dabbling in crime’ is- until the end.

  • Ethan Winning
    2018-12-20 23:44

    Dabbling in Crime: Death of a Violinist and other StoriesWhen one reviews a book which consists of eleven short stories, it becomes more difficult since one cannot "average" 11 stories. But Shelly Reuben's works have always stuck with me, not necessarily the content, but the message or the story of the ending which leaves me wanting more ... and answers to questions.A preface if you will: I have always been a slow reader. I got F's (Fair) in reading throughout grade school. But, slow reading makes for good comprehension and great memories. That's Shelly Reuben. I may not remember the story - certainly not by title - but I rarely forget an ending.Shelly Reuben's writing is what I'd call innovative and quirky. What would you call if you were a 35 year old and got phone calls from you when you were 15? (" You Again?") What a great idea! And the ending can be that you have the answer or that you are left with more questions. Amazing to me is how there can be eleven ideas which a myriad of possibilities. It's impossible not to find something in "Dabbling in Crime," something that will stay with you, or disappear only to pop up in the middle of a meeting six weeks later. Wonderfully inventive, and a marvelous read, and that is high praise from this slow reader who can comprehend more than one meaning to a story.

  • Pat Meek
    2019-01-18 01:45

    The stories in this collection make for satisfying reading. While the settings are familiar - schools, libraries, small towns - it's the rich characters that make the stories unique and engaging. The plots often take surprising turns as the characters face challenges and situations in their lives. Overall though, the decisions they make result from their goodness and sense of fair play.Good reading at the end of a busy day!

  • Vanessa W
    2019-01-16 02:54

    "Dabbling in Crime", the new short story collection by Shelly Reuben is a delightful read that starts right out grabbing your heart with the very first (and my personal favorite) story. I had thought Shelly's last book, "The Boys of Sabbath Street" was my absolute favorite of her works, but "Dabbling in Crime" is by far my new favorite!Each story is just the right length, perfectly constructed and full of emotion. Be it humor or heartbreak, justice or righteousness, all conveyed and shared impeccably with the reader. They will leave you with a tear, a grin, a wry smile... However you react, you will be touched.As a reader, I don't normally reach for the short story genre as I prefer a longer relationship with the characters, but Shelly Reuben's characters are so well drawn and each story perfectly formatted to satisfy the reader by each end every conclusion. I will give nothing away about any of the stories...read it and you will not be disappointed. Be prepared not to put this lovely book down until you have read it cover to cover...you won't want to put it down until you travel through every page.

  • Mason
    2019-01-09 06:04

    This is a book that is hard to describe in just a few lines. It’s more of one of those books that you have to experience for yourself to truly appreciate. It’s not a difficult book, but one that speaks to you on several levels.Author Shelly Reuben leads you up the ladder of suspense only to quickly pull it out from under you with her skillful twists and turns. When I finished the first story, I felt like I'd been up that ladder and then crashed. Just when you know you’ve got something figured out, Reuben kicks the legs out from under you and you’re looking at things in a totally new direction.Her characters are well-developed, colorful, and likeable. The characters have the traits of people you know or wished you knew in person. Each story is unique and delightful in its own way. Filled with humor and mystery, the stories are captivating. Once you start reading, it will be hard to put it down.I truly believe she can write in any genre/style she wants. Her stories are a siren's call you can't resist.FTC Full Disclosure – A copy of this book was sent to me by the author. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review. The thoughts are completely my own and given honestly and freely.

  • Mary Poole
    2018-12-31 22:56

    This collection of short stories is delightfully diverse. Ms. Reuben’s characters are fun, refreshingly intelligent, and thoughtful. Who would think to write a story about a thirty-year old woman calling her former self for advice? Who thinks to explore the tortured soul of a woman who loves her husband and yet allows him to slowly kill himself? Why, it’s Shelly Reuben, of course. As one of five children, I especially enjoyed the twin sisters who had to be taught how to be best friends. Ms. Reuben’s stories spring from a lifetime of experience with humanity at its best and worst. This thoroughly enjoyable collection is something I will gladly recommend to my friends.

  • Selma Holo
    2019-01-18 03:53

    This is a book that surprises and delights. It is a series of mysteries, but kind of vignettes that bring you into a world that melds beauty and the "undertoad" of violence. But, it is an optimistic and delightful group of stories.Rush to read it. You can dip into it or read it all in a single gulp. At any rate you will be filled with the joy of very very good writing and a top notch imagination.

  • Maggie
    2018-12-27 07:01

    I absolutely loved this collection of short stories. Especially perfect for this autumn season leading up to Halloween, Dabbling in Crime is filled with well-written, captivating short stories that each have an ending that will surprise and intrigue. I would definitely recommend to anyone looking for a good read with new and original mysteries that will keep you at the edge of your seat. Another charming treasure by Reuben!!

  • Carrie
    2019-01-10 06:58

    Shelly Reuben's latest work, "Dabbling in Crime," is an absolute treat to read. While the subject matter is often serious, the book's short stories ultimately felt like an antidote to the cynicism we often encounter today. This book to be a surprising jolt of joy and curiosity. Thank you, Shelly Reuben, for sharing your ideas and your spirit with the world.

  • Mary Holahan
    2018-12-22 06:45

    In elegant, often witty language, Shelly Reuben’s short stories about crimes center on characters who – humorously or solemnly (sometimes at the same time) – move through narratives that made me feel a range of emotions from deep sympathy to total hilarity to rage against injustice. There are surprises, secrets, suspicions, resolutions, joys, ambivalence, ambiguities along the way but each story comes to an eminently satisfying conclusion. Or not, depending on how the author presents some of life’s imponderables. To me, that’s one of the best things about this collection. Things can be funny and moving at the same time. And, the author has as a gift for creating the perfect idiom for each speaker, from cynical cop to bereaved widow to romantic 18-year-old. The narrator’s voice and everyone’s dialogue ring true. And little almost throw-away details - like knowing why the subway made her late or which university he went to or what color that bystander’s coat was - add to the “you are there” quality of the stories. I also learned a lot about the methods that investigators use tackle crime scenes. Overall, this collection of gems will make you laugh, think, and want more!

  • Cissy
    2019-01-16 05:09

    Loved this book! Normally not a short story reader but these stories were quick, interesting and fun. Really enjoyable.

  • Stephanie J
    2019-01-17 03:48

    read in October, 2016 Read My rating:1 of 5 stars2 of 5 stars3 of 5 stars[ 4 of 5 stars ]5 of 5 starsDabbling in Crime-Death of a Violinist and other stories is a worthwhile read. Shelly draws on life experiences, which make her stories seem real to her readers. There are those that tear at your heartstrings and make you want to read more of the same, and there are those stories that show her knowledge of fire investigation. She takes you through the investigations step-by-step to show you how one perpetrator or several committed the crimes, thus freeing innocent parties from prosecution.All-in-all, stories that will pique your interest to keep asking for more.

  • Samantha
    2018-12-29 00:57

    "Dabbling in Crime" is a fantastic collection of short stories. With a broad range of character types and story plots, it was hard to put the book down. After knowing Shelly for several years, it comes as no surprise to me that her action and dialogue would suck me right in. I sincerely recommend this book to anyone that is looking for a good collection of condensed mysteries and fantastical stories.

  • Shelly Reuben
    2019-01-16 22:44

    This is one of Shelly's best books yet. Her collection of mystery stories will keep you captivated until the end! Very enjoyable reading.