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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

‘Fleeting Glance’ by Sherban Young

THE BOOK

John Hathaway just wanted a quiet weekend alone with his fiancée. Instead, he receives a cryptic postcard from a man he’s never met, gets wrapped up in an elaborate art heist and finds himself framed for murder. And what’s worse, his future in-laws are in town!

The palette is certainly thickening here, and there might be only one person who can rally the muses in time to string it all together: the Master himself, Enescu Fleet, retired private eye.

THE AUTHOR

An Updated Image Of Author Sherban YoungSherban Young, splits his time between Maryland and Maine, and has often been called the next P. G. Wodehouse, or at the very least the current Sherban Young.  He has an encyclopedic knowledge of poker, baseball, literature, classical music and film (although, it should be noted that this encyclopedia is a single volume, pop-up book edition).  He enjoys single malt, his Mini Cooper S, Macs and, at times, listing things he enjoys.

Sherban claims to be pretty old school, when it comes to mystery writing, with inspiration from the pens of P.G. Wodehouse, Agatha Christie and Rex Stout, urging him on to become an author.

The 37-year-old Ellicott City resident became interested in solving puzzles and mysteries through CD-ROM interactive adventure games, whilst studying at Loyola University, (where he majored in English literature), with his friend developing the graphics and programming  and Sherban writing the stories and puzzles.

Whilst currently his own boss,  in partnership with his father in a Columbia financial planning firm, Sherban has disciplined himself to devote time each morning to writing his mystery capers, although he does confess that not many first ‘writes’ make it into the finished book.

I spend a lot of time rewriting, it’s essential. I think this is not only true at the end of a project but also at the beginning. If you go into a project fully aware that you’re going to rewrite it, you can approach it with a much more relaxed attitude. Then the ideas flow.

WORDS FROM THE BOOK

Everyone is working out their own intrigues. I blame the internet.

No. But Scotland always makes me think of Ireland. And Ireland makes me think of green, and green of greenhouses, and greenhouses of arboretums and of course arboretums of conservatories, and from there my mind went to the conservatory in this house. So, you see, his remark told me everything I needed to know.

As a principle, I’ve always questioned the sanity of characters in cop shows and the like who, scooching down, dab, sniff and taste the substances they find on the ground. This goes on all the time and I am constantly amazed that their last words aren’t “yup, poison”, as they keel over in agonies.

You’re always looking to the future, when everything will magically improve and all your problems will be solved. They never are. You need to live in the present. Look at art. It freezes a moment in time. When are you going to start enjoying a moment that way?

MY THOUGHTS ABOUT THE BOOK

“Blue sail fleet returns!” … Another case for the ‘Modern Mental Gunslinger!’

‘Fleeting Glance’ is the second in a trio of mystery capers, with each novel finding our erstwhile sleuth, Enescu Fleet, solving dastardly deeds and murders in each of the different artistic disciplines; … this time becoming embroiled in the depths of a daring and elaborate art heist.

Once again, the dry wit, acerbic humour and razor sharp mind of author Sherban Young, are unleashed onto the unsuspecting reader in copious quantities, whilst seasoned followers of his work are treated to yet another exhilarating farce of gigantic proportions and daring.

Sherban sets a frenetic pace for his stories which is totally off the wall, with the ‘who did what to who, where, when and why’ penned in a seemingly haphazard way, yet which, in reality, is a complex and skilled technique of writing which undoubtedly rivals that of its more serious counterparts.

You really do need to have your wits about you, even as this profusion of complex, unconventional and truly unique characters go about their everyday lives …. everyone is shrouded in secrets, there are definitely no stereotypes here! Everyone is just a little larger than life, from their rather bohemian appearance and dress mode, to the foibles and eccentricities of their personality and character.

With Sherban taking the brave step of introducing some British characters into this rollercoaster ride of thrust and parry verbal combat, even the odd faux pas, perhaps more noticeable to me as a ‘Brit’, only serves to add to the quirkiness and eccentricity of the exchanges.

Blink and you miss the clues, which are liberally scattered throughout the story; invisible to the naked and untrained eye, yet perfectly poised to become yet another unique lesson in detective work, from our three crime busting heroes.

The suspense is constant, the plot ever changing and the logic totally unfathomable, as Hathaway, Hutton and Fleet appear to stumble their way through the mishaps, mayhem and maze of clues and crimes, yet triumphing through it all, to arrive almost untroubled and unscathed at their prophetic conclusion, as if by some great and pre-planned design.

The rather avant garde style of writing, and excellent titling for the books, is more than complimented by the fantastic cover art of Sherban’s chosen illustrator Katerina Vamvasaki, who has perfected her art of interpreting the ‘feel’ of the title and characters and translating them into something stimulatingly visual and eye-catching.

In this fun storytelling style, which will undoubtedly challenge and ring the changes to your regular reading routine, just how easily are the brain and eyes deceived? See if you can work out this conundrum before our experts reveal all!

As this book was a review request, a complimentary Kindle edition of ‘Fleeting Glance’ was sent to me by its author, Sherban Young.

This in no way influenced any comments I may have expressed about the book, in any blog article I have posted. Any thoughts or comments are my own personal opinion and I am in no way being monetarily compensated for this, or any other article.

I personally do not agree with ‘rating’ a book, as the overall experience is all a matter of personal taste, which varies from reader to reader. However some review sites do demand a rating value, so when this review is posted to such a site, it will attract a 4 out of 5.

Written by
Yvonne

I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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15 comments
  • This sounds like a wonderfully witty book. The extracts that you shared had me quite entertained, particularly the thought process one (referencing Scotland, Ireland etc). You said this was the second book in a trio so I think I’ll be adding the first to my wishlist. I’ve been trying to find some new authors to enjoy this year as opposed to sticking with the same old, same old, and I think Sherban Young may well be one of those – we shall see. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
    On a totally non book related note, I hope you are safe and sound. I know a lot of Somerset is having trouble with floods and such at the moment!
    🙂

    • Hi Jade,

      Sherban definitely knows how to write both a wiity book and a story which the reader will need their wits about them to keep up with!

      Just exactly how Enescu Fleet ever manages to solve a case is beyond me, as his powers of deduction seem completely random and erratic, yet he always gets there in the end, and long before I do!

      You could probably read these as stand alone stories, however reading ‘Fleeting Memory’ first, will really help to set the scene and cement the relationships between the main protagonists. If you want to check out ‘Fleeting Memory’, my review is here …

      https://www.fiction-books.biz/reviews/my-thoughts-about-fleeting-memory-by-sherban-young/

      I particularly like the third quote from the book ,about the sanity of characters in cop shows, as if you think about it, this is exactly what happens!

      We live on high ground in Somerset and thankfully not down on the levels, so apart from everything being more than a little soggy, we are okay, thanks for asking. It is at times like these that we are grateful that we weren’t swayed by the prospect of a coastal view house, or river frontage property!

      What about yourself, I know that parts of Wales have taken a real beating and Caerphilly looks to be quite close to the coast?

      Thanks for such a lovely comment and I hope that you have a relaxing and enjoyable weekend.

      • I love a bungling detective – Enescu Fleet sounds like a character I will enjoy reading about.

        Thanks for sharing your review of the first book in the trio. Even though you say they can be read as standalones I’ll know in the back of my mind that they are a part of a trio and it will niggle me. I’m keen to check these books out!

        It’s lucky that you’re up on high ground! Caerphilly is an hour or so from the coast so thankfully we are fine here – thanks for asking. We do have a main river just a minute or so from where we live but I don’t think the heavy rain will cause it’s banks to burst or anything. It’s looking fine currently anyway.

        Enjoy your weekend!

        🙂

        • Hi Jade,

          The river which runs right through the centre of the town is runing very high at the moment, although no one seems concerned about it bursting its banks anytime soon. The centre has been flooded once in the time we have lived here, but as I said, we live up the hill on much higher ground, so all is well.

          I do hope that you find the time to check out one or two of Sherban’s books at some time in the not too distant future, as they really are rather good!

          Take Care.

    • Hi Hila,

      Those are Sherban’s words, not mine! Although In all sincerity, I do have to say that if you like your mysteries written with a liberal smattering of clever wit, laugh out loud humour and a supporting cast of more than slightly quirky and eccentric characters, then this is definitely a series worth checking out. Just visiting the front page of Sherban’s website is more than enough to bring a smile to most faces and brighten an otherwise gloomy day.

      http://www.sherbanyoung.com/

      Thanks for stopping by and enjoy the rest of your weekend.

    • Hi Nikki,

      I know that you are a fan of the more serious crime / thriller stories. However, if you can also appreciate a liberal smattering of excellent wit and humour, from a detective and his assistants who always manage to solve the crime in their own inimitable fashion, then this series and indeed the author himself, are genuinely worth more than a second glance.

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by, you know that I always appreciate your visits and I hope that all is well with you.

    • Hi Sherban,

      Thank you, for an exhilarating and fun ride through the criminal world of the art thief.

      Enescu seems to make very easy work of solving his crimes, yet without even so much as breaking a sweat. Whereas I get all riled up with the frenetic pace of the action, yet I am still left open mouthed and confused, as Enescu calmly unmasks the villain of the piece!

      I hope that all is well with you and that book sales are increasing nicely.

      • If you want my advice, just string along with Hathaway and enjoy the ride. That’s what I do. He and I have long since given up on trying to match wits with Enescu Fleet.

        Of course, if you want a leg up, you can always try solving the dying clue left behind by the murder victim in all the Fleet books. The puzzles might not be easy, but they usually point you in the right direction.

  • It sounds like you really enjoyed this one Yvonne. I enjoy complex and unconventional characters. This does sound like a fun one. I’ve seen these around and the covers are very unique. That first quote is cute.
    Fantastic review.

    • Hi Naida,

      Yes, Enescu certainly does have quite a way with words, doesn’t he? Some of his one-liners are classic, it was difficult to pick just one or two as a feature.

      I have always thought that the covers are such an important part of this particular series, in fact with all this authors books, as the storylines, characters and narrative are so complex and quirky, that finding cover art to reflect this and capture the reading audience in those vital first few seconds, would be a challenge. I love Sherban’s final choices though and consequently, the front page of his website, is a veritable feast for the eyes!

      I hope that you are well, it is good to speak with you and thank you for your comments.

  • Thanks for bringing this one to my attention! I must admit, he had me at the cover image, but the quote you supplied about the tv cops tasting things really clinched it for me–I’ve always thought exactly the same thing. Taking a chance and stacking this one up on Mt. TBR.

    • Hi,

      ‘Fleeting Glance’ does work quite well as a stand alone, however to get a real feel for the characters, try reading the first book in the series ‘Fleeting Memory’.

      There were just so many great cliches and one-liners, that I was spoilt for choice when it came to selecting something for my ‘words from the book’ section. I could have gone on forever, because the entire book is just one great hoot!

      I hope that you enjoy it, should it eventually get to the top of mount TBR. I know for a fact that some (No! Many) of my books will never see the light of day!

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by, I love to chat about anything bookish!

Written by Yvonne

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