The Vinyl Detective – The Run-Out Groove: Vinyl Detective 2
In Andrew Cartmel’s vinyl detective sequel, The Run-Out Groove, our records detective is given the task of tracking down a rare 45 by a singer who died in her prime…and her long-lost son as well. What follows is a harrowing journey through the history of London’s punk rock scene, punctuated by drugs and drink.
The writing is sharp and witty, and there were several lines that had me snorting in appreciation of their humor. This drove an excellent plot to even better heights, but there was one problem that stood out: the apathy I felt toward the characters. I feel like this is mostly the fault of the perspective; the first-person perspective from the lead character often feels overly judgmental, and I frequently found myself asking why he would hang around people he so obviously didn’t care for. It made it hard to concentrate on the story when I consistently found myself questioning the relationships between the characters and wondering when it would all fall apart, which it never did.
That being said, the story really is quite fun, especially if you appreciate older music forms and can sympathize with the feeling of finding just the right rare record hidden in a dusty corner.