Thursday, December 17, 2009

Murder Is Bigamy - Leigh Brackett


Number of words : 13000
Percent of complex words : 5.5
Average syllables per word : 1.4
Average words per sentence : 9.5


Fog : 6.0
Flesch : 79.9
Flesch-Kincaid : 4.5


Avenue 35

In Los Angeles where the story opens.

Santa Monica Boulevard

In Los Angeles where Sullavan meets the cops.

Bradbury's Small Animal Hospital

Orange Avenue, also in LA, where more than animals get dead.


Frank Sullavan

Ex-army man, partner of George Everetts in a small boat business and so knew Billie. Was involved with Frances Sparling in the past.

George Everetts

Husband of Billie, and one husband too many for some people where Frances is concerned.

Billie Everetts

Wife of George, a burlesque pony from San Francisco, and the one spouse too many. Also a blackmailer.

Frances Sparling

George Everett's second wife. Was very close to Sullavan in the past.

George Starke

Wants the second wife, but she doesn't want him anymore.

Lieutenant Fearon

Officer in charge of investigating this tangled web of matrimony and murder.


A veterinarian who has a seriously bad thing for Frances.


A cop on the case.

Mrs. Pawley

A visitor to the Bradbury's veterinary hospital.


Mrs. Pawley's terrier patient that didn't make it.


The title again is highly indicative. Two bigamists, two murders, and a single man gets involved who knew both the dead husband and wife, and the live wife, whom everybody seems to fancy.

"What did Billie think about the murder?"
"She was pretty sore about it. She'd had her hooks into Everetts for a pretty good income, on that bigamy score. But she wasn't crying over him."
"When did you find out," I said quickly, "that Billie had been peddling Frances to Everetts, the same as she had to you?"


"Billie had been George Everetts' undivorced wife, and George had married Frances Sparling anyway.

And now it was worse than bigamy. It was murder. Double murder."

This ends up with Sullavan having to work out who actually killed who, or is trying to kill who.

3.5 out of 5

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