Amuse Bouche


Author: Anthony Bidulka

Published: 2003

Genre: Mystery

About Amuse Bouche: Private detective Russell Quant investigates the disappearance of one of the grooms at a gay wedding. The first book in the Russell Quant series.

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Review of Amuse Bouche

Russell Quant is just beginning his second year as a private investigator when he gets a call from Harold Chavell. The rich businessman asks for Quant's help and discretion in finding the man he was supposed to marry.

"Tom and I are deeply in love. We've been together for almost three years. We are dedicated to one another. For him not to show up, to leave me standing there alone, like a fool, at the altar, never mind to not even call, is just...well it's something I can't accept."

"I hate to be blunt." A lie. "But it did happen. Don't you have to accept it?"

"No. I can accept that the ceremony did not occur, but I cannot accept that he stood me up on purpose. I think something is terribly wrong." [page 13]

With that, Quant is hired and on his way to France to track down the elusive Tom Osborn.

Quant was charming, witty, and somewhat conceited. He enjoyed the finer side of life so there was more emphasis on things like fashion and food descriptions than you might typically find in a mystery novel. His interactions with his friends and with his contact on the police force were fun and realistic.

Some things made me laugh out loud, like this moment after Chavell reveals that he was to be married to another man.

Now this I didn't expect. Juicy. His hesitation after this revelation led me to believe that he wanted a response. I decided against "juicy." "I'm sorry it didn't work out for you." [page 12]

There were a few things I wasn't crazy about (Quant said "yuck" a little too often) but nothing that took away from the story itself. However, I could have lived without the final scene. It didn't add anything to Quant's character that I didn't already know and seemed to me to be completely gratuitous. Then again, I'm pretty sure that scene wasn't aimed at me.

This was Bidulka's first book and the first book in the Russell Quant series. I haven't read any of the others yet but I liked Quant a lot so I'll be looking for a chance to do so.

Reviewed by Lynn Bornath on 27 June 2009.

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More Reviews

Jeffrey Canton, Quill & Quire, March 2003
“This is a good start to an exciting new mystery series.”


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Added 15 May 2009.
Updated 23 August 2013.