His first adventure consisted of the search for a rare record; his second begins with the discovery of one. When a mint copy of the final album by “Valerian” — England’s great lost rock band of the 1960s — surfaces in a charity shop, all hell breaks loose.
Finding this record triggers a chain of events culminating in our hero learning the true fate of the singer Valerian, who died under equivocal circumstances just after — or was it just before? — the abduction of her two-year-old son.
Along the way, the Vinyl Detective finds himself marked for death, at the wrong end of a shotgun, and unknowingly dosed with LSD as a prelude to being burned alive. And then there’s the grave robbing…
But he does find out what happened to the missing child, and it wasn’t what anyone expected — or wanted — to hear.
In the meantime, here are just a few of the reviews the series has received so far…
‘This charming mystery feels as companionable as a leisurely afternoon trawling the vintage shops with a good friend.’ — Kirkus
‘… fast-paced, lighthearted adventure… marvelously inventive and endlessly fascinating…’ — Publishers Weekly on WRITTEN IN DEAD WAX
‘Author Cartmel has combined the tropes of the several genres into a surprising, refreshing story centered around old-fashioned records… the story delivers multiple chuckles per chapter… Based on this volume, the series will be a hit.’ — New York Journal of Books on WRITTEN IN DEAD WAX
‘The story is so charming, funny and engaging… There is a wonderful sense of time and place, each location filled with a varied cast of colourful characters… There is an engaging tapestry of technical information and jazz history being woven throughout… The Vinyl Detective has it all… intrigue, mystery, romance, action, travel, humour, music, history… It’s the perfect chilled-out read… It’s British crime fiction with an American jazz soundtrack and it’s delightful.’ (9/10) — Alternative Magazine Online on WRITTEN IN DEAD WAX
‘… entertaining second record-spinning mystery… Cartmel treats music and records seriously, plays his strange characters for laughs, and provides a bit of danger and some unexpected twists in this affectionate nod to the vagaries of rock stardom.’ — Publishers Weekly on THE RUN-OUT GROOVE
‘Part of the fun of the series is the obsessiveness of record collectors, the contradictions between the mundane places in which they hunt their treasures — charity shops, church bazaars — and the sophisticated sound systems they have set up to play what they find… the Vinyl Detective is proving to be a very amenable companion to have on a treasure hunt. This is one vinyl nerd you won’t mind spending time with.’ — Kirkus on THE RUN-OUT GROOVE
‘Polished, fast-paced and a ton of fun, this is a fantastic read that is easy to get lost in… more polished… keeps the story rolling forward at an incredible speed – and also makes it very hard to put down… Cartmel has created an intoxicating mix of adventure, humour and mystery to lose yourself in… a truly engaging and enjoyable read. THE RUN-OUT GROOVE surpasses even the opening novel in the series for polish and fun.’ — The Crime Review
‘… effectively integrates the lead’s unusual specialty of searching out rare records into an intricately constructed plot… the clever resolution of the story lines is impressive. Fair-play fans, even those without an interest in music, will be pleased.’ — Publishers Weekly on VICTORY DISC
‘VICTORY DISC works beautifully both as a sequel and as a standalone novel… The story is splendid, continuing the fine tradition of the series to date of weaving fascinating fact with thrilling fiction… Andrew Cartmel is a fine mystery (and comedy) writer, keeping his readers smiling while never letting the elements of humour obfuscate the more serious moments… if you enjoyed the first two books, you’ll undoubtedly enjoy this one too. The unsolved murder mystery is highly intriguing, the characters introduced throughout are fully formed and a delight to uncover more about, and the chemistry between the Vinyl Detective and his friends is absolutely spot on. In short, VICTORY DISC is beautifully orchestrated and well worth taking for a spin this summer.’ — Alternative Magazine Online
‘Cartmel at his best… an exciting and atmospheric mystery and a good addition to the Vinyl Detective’s casebook.’ — Blue Book Balloon on VICTORY DISC