About Me

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Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada
I am a lawyer in Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada who enjoys reading, especially mysteries. Since 2000 I have been writing personal book reviews. This blog includes my reviews, information on and interviews with authors and descriptions of mystery bookstores I have visited. I strive to review all Saskatchewan mysteries. Other Canadian mysteries are listed under the Rest of Canada. As a lawyer I am always interested in legal mysteries. I have a separate page for legal mysteries. Occasionally my reviews of legal mysteries comment on the legal reality of the mystery. You can follow the progression of my favourite authors with up to 15 reviews. Each year I select my favourites in "Bill's Best of ----". As well as current reviews I am posting reviews from 2000 to 2011. Below my most recent couple of posts are the posts of Saskatchewan mysteries I have reviewed alphabetically by author. If you only want a sentence or two description of the book and my recommendation when deciding whether to read the book look at the bold portion of the review. If you would like to email me the link to my email is on the profile page.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Frisky Business by Jill Edmondson

Frisky Business by Jill Edmondson – The 4th Sasha Jackson mystery sees her investigating the death of a porn movie star, Kitty Vixen. I found it the most challenging book of the series. Overall I liked it but I also have concerns with regard to the book.

Kitty’s fellow actresses led by Raven Greywolf, porn actress turned escort, put some money together to hire Sasha to investigate Kitty’s murder. The trail has grown cold for the police.

Sasha, as she probes AAA XXX, the studio which had employed Kitty, learns the details of a lucrative business which is as exploitive as any other sex business. The bodies of the men and women who “star” in the movies are commodities. It is mass production visual sex for the internet.

The $1,000 a day earned by the women hardly seems worth the damage to their psyches. While male actors are discussed they play little role in the book.

To help understand the business Sasha watches a considerable amount of porn. She is turned off by the movies.

Kitty has been well regarded because of the large number of her movies which are downloaded on the net. At the same time she had been stirring matters up at the studio by wanting better pay and working conditions.

Sasha keeps prodding at witnesses gradually developing what was going on in Kitty’s life before she was killed.

Sasha receives some crude threats but is undeterred. If anything she becomes more focused in the investigation.

Reading about Sasha’s life is a great reason to read the book. Jill continues to develop her sleuth.

Among the funniest scenes in the book are the driving lessons Sasha has undertaken. In her 30’s she has yet to master driving.

In her personal life she is suffering mixed emotions about her relationship with downtown lawyer, Derek. Sasha is tentative about committing fully to the relationship. It is Derek who wants to make them a couple. She is not sure she is ready to live with Derek.

Unfortunately, while Jill’s loathing of the adult film industry is well justified, the book ventured into being preachy about the industry which obscured the plot at times.

I found the male characters becoming one dimensional. Either they were very good or very bad. If they were very bad they were likely to be unattractive, even ugly. I understand Jill could not bear to have positive characters as adult movie executives. I wish they could have been more rounded.

Unlike earlier books it was not a mystery with regard to the solution. It was clear who committed the crime. Finding evidence to prove guilt was the story. It is hard to maintain suspense when the resolution is clear early in the book.

For some reason I found the mystery about porn movies more difficult to read than Jill’s explorations of S & M, prostitution and telephone sex in earlier books.

I continue to enjoy the series. I did not find Frisky Business as good a book as The Lies Have It. I am confident the next book in the series will be better. I thank Jill for forwarding an electronic copy to me. The book is currently only available in an electronic format.


  1. Bill- Thanks for your honest appraisal of the book. It's definitely a difficult topic to address. I agree completely that Sasha Jackson's character is evolving and developing, and that adds much to the book. And yes, the driving lessons add a terrific bit of wit. I also thought Kitty's backstory was handled well.

  2. Margot: Thanks for the comment. Sasha has some serious decisions to make in her personal life.

  3. Bill, I'm familiar with the Sasha Jackson series although I haven't read any of them. Thanks for an interesting review of a rather unusual novel.

    1. Prashant: Thanks for the comment. The subject industry is not one I can recall reading about in another series.

  4. Sounds Interesting. I had to grab the free copy of one of her other titles on amazon and check the series out.

    1. Scott: Thanks for the comment. I will be interested in your thoughts on Sasha.

  5. I've read an amazing crime novel about the porn world called MONEY SHOT by Christa Faust. But I don't think it's your kind of book, Bill. Not for the faint of heart as they say and very graphic about the not so pretty world of people who get paid to have sex while being filmed. A pretty ugly world, I'd say. No wonder Edmondson made the villains literally ugly. I doubt there are many Good Samaritans in the porn world. Humans become reduced to bodies and body parts and sex acts. I have a hard time believing these men who run porn movie production companies have a soul.

    1. John: Thanks for the comment. You are right. Money Shot will not be a reading priority for me.