Scrimple’s life is turned inside out when the dead body of a prominent of an expatriate is found in a garbage room. After investigating, he returns home to find a nightclub hostess sleeping in his bed, which sends him on a whirlwind adventure through Hong Kong nightlife, crossing with Triad bosses, and unpleasant discoveries about his friends, and betrayal by his colleagues.
Classified as Crime is a classic whodunit mystery novel set in a part of the world that’s mysterious to us. I like that it takes me to a new, unfamiliar place and describes it well enough that I can imagine being in 1987 Hong Kong, even though I’ve never traveled to the East. Goldsilk has a great capacity to paint the setting vividly enough that I can see, hear, and smell the surroundings. Likewise, the characters are well developed. Anybody that’s suffered from job burnout can relate to Scrimple’s intense desire to get through the day so he can escape back into his own little world where life is safe and simple, along with his confusion and shock at being thrust into an adventure that he doesn’t desire. The plot is well paced and intricately detailed enough to give the story fullness without overloading it with too many subplots or details. All in all, it’s a well written and well balanced novel. Good setting, good characters, good plot – who could ask for anything more?
I was skeptical about reading a novel that takes place in the past, which usually isn’t my thing. I’m glad I listened to the little voice telling me to give this novel a chance, because it pleasantly surprised me. I enjoyed this book! My only disappointment is that it ends rather abruptly, but then again, I don’t suppose there was much left to say once the loose ends were tied up – maybe.
I recommend Classified as Crime to people who love mystery and suspense novels. It’s a great read!