Monday, October 17, 2016

Fun House by Chris Grabenstein

First Line: He wasn't happy about it, but last night my partner John Ceepak became a TV star.

The mayor of Sea Haven always wishes everyone a "sunny, funderful day," and when the cast of reality TV show called Fun House decides to take him up on it, everyone seems thrilled. Except police officers John Ceepak and Danny Boyle, that is. The two have been assigned babysitting duty for the cast while trying to prevent the wild kids from breaking laws up and down the beach. At first, their duty is nothing but a monumental pain in the hiney, but no one could have anticipated that one of the cast members was going to be murdered. With other members being threatened with the same fate, Ceepak and Boyle have their hands full.

I make it a point not to watch reality TV, but with the number of mystery series that I read using that as a plot device, I now know I was justified in my decision. Of course, it helps when a master like Chris Grabenstein is writing the book; I know he'll make me laugh about it-- and he certainly did (although I think I was cringing while I was laughing).

Layla, a character from the previous book, makes an appearance here as a production assistant on the set, and we have one worried Danny Boyle. You see... Ceepak is seriously thinking about a career change.

This is another swift-moving entry in this excellent series. Grabenstein planted plenty of red herrings for us readers; however, I still found the identity of the killer to be easy to deduce. But let's face it-- I don't read Ceepak and Boyle for ground-breaking mysteries. Grabenstein has created two splendid characters who have grabbed hold of my heart, and he knows how to make me laugh. That's more than good enough for me, and I think it will be for you, too. 

Fun House by Chris Grabenstein
Pegasus Books © 2012
eBook, 336 pages

Police Procedural/Humorous Mystery, #7 Ceepak & Boyle mystery
Rating: B+
Source: Purchased from Amazon.


  1. I have to admit, Cathy, I've a soft spot for this series. I spent most of my adult life about 1/ 1/2 hours from the Jersey Shorte before moving west. And the people Grabenstein describes (and the lifestyle) feel very real to me.

  2. I've never been close to the Jersey Shore (I guess Manhattan is as close as I've gotten) but I have a soft spot for this series too. I thought this particular one was funnier than the rest, though maybe because I just loved that Grabenstein was having a dig at reality TV (which I don't watch either). It seems like he has stopped writing these - there used to be one a year but now nothing since 2013 - that makes me sad. I'm thrilled for him that he's doing so well with his kids and YA books but what about us neglected adults?


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