Bill Moody: Press


Moody's clues: Jazz drummer delves into the mysteries of the music world in his novels
San Francisco Chronicle, March 16, 2002
"Moody never knows how the story ends until he gets there. He begins with a premise, 'then I constantly ask myself the "what if" and "why" questions as I'm writing.' Like jazz, 'it's a discovery process as you go.'"


Review: Czechmate
by 12-String Dean,
"I've loved all seven or so of Bill Moody's Evan Horne jazz pianist/detective mystery series books, and this new book is a wonderful addendum for the Moody canon. His new character is both loveable and sensitive, while at the same time a bit of a rebel—reminding me just a bit of the spy in Adam Hall's The Quiller Memorandum. Plotting and structure is impressive and pleasingly unpredictable, and the 'historical fiction' components of the Russian invasion and of European jazz Moody handles with his typical elan. There's an 'important political figure' kidnapping scene that will astound, and the two most impressive descriptions of jazz playing are among the best Moody has ever penned, clearly cementing his place in the pantheon, right beside James Baldwin (in 'Sonny's Blues'). I finished Czechmate in one enjoyable rush."

Review: Die Cool: A mystery novel revisits the 1988 death of the jazz trumpeter Chet Baker in Amsterdam
New York Times Book Review, April 7, 2002
"A musician himself, Moody is a fluent writer with a good ear for dialogue, a deft and ingratiating descriptive touch, a talent for characterization and a genuine feel for the jazz world... Looking for Chet Baker is thoughtful entertainment. And like Baker's music, it is open to anyone—no jazz-insider ID required."

Review: Looking for Chet Baker
The Chicago Tribune, April 14, 2002
"You don't have to be a huge jazz fan to enjoy the latest of Bill Moody's colorful, cross-genre riffs about piano man and sleuth Evan Horne... In the fictional but instantly recognizable figure of Fletcher Paige, a tenor sax player in his 70s who has chosen to live and work in Amsterdam, Moody pays tribute to a generation of black American artists who found to their delight that Europe was no place like home."

Review: Looking for Chet Baker
The Washington Post, March 31, 2002
"Moody is clearly at the top of his game when he writes about the subject he knows and loves so well: jazz. His passages about the life of a traveling musician, his take on the differences between European and American audiences, and his rich descriptions of the music itself all resonate with a passion that makes this book sing. In addition, the seamless blending of jazz fact and fiction found in Looking for Chet Baker should delight both PI and jazz enthusiasts."

Review: Looking for Chet Baker
Publishers Weekly, January 7, 2002
"Moody does a wonderful job of re-creating the man and his times. For anyone interested in jazz, this is a must. For anyone just interested in a good mystery, this is just what the coroner ordered."

Review: Looking for Chet Baker
The Tampa Tribune
"The best way to read this book? Throw a Baker album on the stereo and let his magic, tragic trumpet and soft, almost languid vocals—Baker loved to sing—provide the perfect background. And then wait, eagerly, for Moody's next book."

Review: Looking for Chet Baker
"Moody's jazz-based mysteries starring piano player and sleuth Evan Horne have found a swinging groove after five choruses... This latest effort... flows smoothly throughout, with nicely integrated backstory never getting in the way of a tantalizing plot."

Crime Reviews: Bird Lives!
New York Times Book Review, June 27, 1999
"You can head-bop and toe-tap on the club dates and rehearsal scenes in Los Angeles and Las Vegas, and a pilgrimage to the St. John Coltrane Church in San Francisco is beyond cool."

Crime Reviews: Sound of the Trumpet
New York Times Book Review, Feb. 16, 1997
"When Bill Moody writes about dead jazz musicians, you can hear the blue notes bouncing off the walls..."

Review: Sound of the Trumpet
"[Moody] provide[s] fascinating insider information on various aspects of the jazz world. A must for jazz fans, who will appreciate Moody's grasp of the music."

Review: Death of a Tenor Man
"The Vegas setting is nicely realized, and the use of the real-life Gray case proves fascinating, especially to jazz fans, who will also appreciate the author's musings on the jazz player's art."


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