Monday, January 25, 2016
Review of Peepshow by Leigh Redhead (Allen and Unwin, 2004)
In the late 90s/early 00s I read a whole bunch of tart noir tales involving sassy, smart female PIs who usually got themselves involved in dangerous, madcap adventures with a side-line in romantic/lustful romps. Peepshow fits neatly into the sub-genre, but with sex/sexy dial turned up to eleven. Leigh Redhead provides a vivid glimpse in the peepshow and stripping side of the sex industry, and leaves little to the imagination with respect to the sex life of her lead character, Simone Kirsch, a stripper turned private investigator. Simone’s task is to find the killer of a strip club owner under threat that her friend, Chloe, will die if she fails. Given that the police have failed to turn up any clues it’s a tall order. Thrown into the mix is a colourful set of strippers, a corrupt cop, a rockabilly band, two suitors – a guitarist and an undercover cop – and a lot of champagne and drugs. The result is quickly paced romp laced with plenty of humour. There’re not too many surprises in the telling, but the story is good explicit fun and sets up the series well. Simone Kirsch is certainly breaks the usual PI mould and I’m looking forward to her next case.