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Crang Books In Order

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Publication Order of Crang Mystery Books

Crang Plays the Ace (1987)Description / Buy at Amazon
Straight No Chaser (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon
Riviera Blues (1990)Description / Buy at Amazon
Blood Count (1991)Description / Buy at Amazon
Take Five (2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
Keeper of the Flame (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
Booking In (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon

The Crang series is a series of highly renowned mystery books written by one of noteworthy Canadian authors named Jack Batten. It is based on the themes of murder, mayhem, and mystery. In all, there are 6 books in this mystery series, which were released between the years 1987 and 2016. Author Batten has introduced the chief protagonist in all the books of this series in the role of Crang. He is described as a criminal lawyer, who has many notorious criminals as his clients. Crang loves jazz music, Polish vodka, old English movies, and his beloved girlfriend Annie, and his convertible Volkswagen car. However, he does not wish to have them in that order. Crang lives in Upper Canada and is well known as a wise cracking WASP, having a moral code that hardly owes anything to the Upper Canada Law Society. In addition to being a famous criminal lawyer, he is also very quick with his fists and lips. It is said about Crang that he is able to tell fish forks from brass knuckle pairs, he wishes to. The office of Crang is based on the second floor of a Queen Street building in Toronto. Most of the clients who visit him in his office are street punks, scam artists of small times, robbers, etc. All of them are usually guilty and Crang knows it very well. He tends to like it in that sense. And when he goes on to get them off the charges with the help of his expert skills as a lawyer, they become very grateful to him and pay well too.

The debut novel of the Crang series written by author Jack Batten is entitled ‘Crang Plays the Ace’. It was released by the Gage Distribution Company in the year 1987. The main characters described in the plot include Crang and Mathew Wansborough. In the opening sequence of this novel, author Batten has introduced Matthew Wansborough as the scion of a well known ancient family of Canada as well as a wealthy financier. He pays a visit to Crang and tells him his problem that his huge investment of 300 thousand dollars in Ace Disposal Services seems to be too profitable. This unusual problem of Matthew Wansborough leaves Crang puzzled. Firstly, he does not seem to be the usual type of client who comes to Crang for help, and secondly, the Ace Services does not appear to be a clean and clear blue chip operation. Nevertheless, Crang decides to take up the case and look deep into the matter to find out mystery related to the Matthew Wansborough’s investment. With the help of the unorthodox ways of investigation, Crang finds out that the Ace is one of the dirtiest players in the dark world of business. It is run by the men who control the commerce wheel in the country with fraud, kickbacks, muscle power, and even murder. Author Batten has mixed the plot with comedy and mystery settings, which makes it an even more entertaining novel. He has all his experience as a lawyer to give an in-depth knowledge about the legal proceedings. Similar to many of his other books and series, this book too contains an en easy-going style, that makes it stand among all his previous bestseller novels. According to author Batten, the readers will be eager to read more about Crang once they make acquaintance with him through this book. And in the debut story, Batten has done just the same thing. The set up of the story and the description of the court procedures tend to make this book a must read for all the fans of legal mystery books. After seeing Crang perform well with his first mystery case, the readers seem highly impatient to read about how he scores in his upcoming cases in the next books of the series. The success that the debut book received promises that the series is going to be a very successful and lengthy one.

One of the other initial books written by author Batten in the series is titled as ‘Straight No Chaser’. It was released by the Thomas Allen publication in the year 2011, after it was originally published in 1989. The important characters described in this book by Batten include Dave Goddard and Crang. In addition to describing the unconventional lawyer of criminal cases, Crang, and his taste for vodka and the knack of landing in trouble, Batten has also mentioned Cocaine, Vietnamese triads, jazz, as well as other yuppie lawyers dealing in dopes. Alongside Crang’s criminal law career, Dave Goddard is described as a sax player, who is well versed with playing the fifties style of music on his saxophone. Unwittingly, Dave goes on to get involved in a complicated smuggling ring dealing in cokes. When he realizes that he has landed himself in a deep trouble, Dave goes on to take help from his old friend, Crang. And as Crang agrees to help his friend find out the person tailing him, he reluctantly ends up being a sleuth. His sleuthing activities in order to find clues, takes him to a number of unlikely locations. These include behind the curtains of the very popular chic film festival of Toronto, an afterhours boozecan run by triads. Crang also enters into the inner sanctum of a deadly gang, which is the office of a genial and deadly kingpin named Big Bam.

And just like in all his previous cases, Crang does not let anyone refer him as a superhero. However, with the help of his usual blend of naive enthusiasm and innate cool, once again, he ends up bringing the criminals to justice. This allowed the readers to enjoy another cleverly entertaining book involving the heroics of Crang. At the end of the climax scene, the readers were left amazed and excited to look forward to the next case of Crang. The prose developed by Jack Batten seems to flow flawlessly. Throughout the plot, Batten has given a number of references to movies and jazz, filling them with humor and fun. Even the location of the story appears very wonderful and happening. Overall, the book provided a fun mystery which includes both suspense and humor and a cast of ensemble characters. Many critics found the book to be a hilarious and fabulous read and praised author Batten for his dedicated efforts in bringing up this story. Once again, the success of the book set the stage for author Batten to work on the next mystery books featuring Crang in the lead role.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Crang

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