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South by South East (Diamond Brothers Story) by Anthony Horowitz

  • Author: Anthony Horowitz
  • Book title: South by South East (Diamond Brothers Story)
  • Category: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
  • Subcategory: Mystery
  • Publisher: Walker Books Ltd; New edition edition (July 8, 2002)
  • Pages: 170
  • ISBN: 074459037X
  • ISBN13: 978-0744590371
  • Rating: 4.3
  • Votes: 946
  • Other formats: lrf lit rtf doc
7 Reviews
Best Anthony Horowitz series yet.
My son loves all the books in this series. Once he starts reading he doesn't want to put the book down.
My middle school son loves this series. It's a bit mystery, thriller, just a little violence to keep the characters interesting.
It was sick and cool I loved j f r r DNS SMS SMS smear f fit y y y
Let me start out by saying that I love the Diamond Brothers series, and I love anything written by Anthony Horowitz. However, in "South by Southeast", the fourth Diamond brother's book, the usual humor and clever plotting techniques that make Horowitz such a good mystery writer are no where to be seen. I am without a clue as to why Horowitz didn't make this a short story as it would have worked much better than it did as a full length story (even though it's only a slim 148 pages). Readers who enjoyed the other Diamond Brothers books will be slightly entertained in this outing with Tim's usual silly antics and Nick's saracastic voice, but they will mostly remain disappointed at the book's stretched and weak plotting.

The Diamond brothers are, surprise surprise, broke. They just moved into a cheap and even crappier apartment when suddenly a mysterious man bursts into their office, offers Tim a wad of cash for his coat, and disappears as quickly as he came. When Tim and Nick follow him outside, they find him lying on a sidewalk, dying from a gunshot wound. His last words, drowned out by a train, sounded like "suff bee suff-iss" or was it "south by southeast"? Suddenly, the Diamond Brothers are thrown into another adventure involving MI6 and their chase for the assasin Charon, who murdered the coat man, and "his" plans to murder a Russian diplomat. What follows is the usual funny antics of Nick trying to save Tim from deadly situation after deadly situation including an airplane chase, a deadly magical show, and the aforementioned horror that is the tunnel of love.

While the story is funny and somewhat clever, this mystery would clearly have worked better as a short story. The plotting is stretched, and the fast-paced mystery that makes the series so good did not fit well with this book's slim 148 pages. There was no shocker in the end, and the clues, as far and inbetween as they are, weren't very difficult to figure out. However, while weak in plotting, the book will still engage younger readers with its humor and non-stop storyline.

While somehwat disappointed in "South by Southeast", I am still looking forward to the next installment, as Horowitz has leaked that there's one in the works. Hopefully, if it ever does come to life, the next Diamond Brother's book will return to the qualites that made the first three so enjoyable.
I have been reading the Diamond Brothers stories out of sequence, and have only just learned from this one that Tim's real name is Herbert and he used to be a police officer, which is a big joke. So that must be where he got the idea of being a private investigator from! I am also starting to recognize patterns: for example, the usual opening where the brothers have no money and nothing to eat until an unexpected client gives them some cash.

The brothers go to Amsterdam for this assignment, and as usual have many unrealistic, over the top adventures. Tim seems slightly out of character here: he actually notices something before Nick does, and is quite right to be suspicious of someone whom Nick does not accept as a threat. He also picks up a cue from Nick very quickly. Tim goes to an interview for the position of Head of Security of a bank, which is another big joke, and he is again rightly suspicious where Nick is not. The bank is described as a small, square one-floor building in Pall Mall, more like a high class jeweller than a bank. This is exactly what might be expected in this part of London.

The best witticism is when Nick in desperation bids £1,000,000 for an item at Sothebys: the auctioneer says "You're just a boy", and Nick replies "I know, but I get a lot of pocket money". Anyone of any age will appreciate this and want more of the same.
Once again. A very exciing book. I loved it. Horowitz continues to amaze me with his brilliant writting. Thrilling and filled with action.
South By Southeast

Tim Diamond is the worst detective ever. He is so bad he was kicked out of the police force. His younger bother Nick is the brains behind their business. A new case has opened the door right in front of them. A murder case, can they stop the killer before his next job is finished, the Russian President is killed. Will they find out who the killer is and save the president or will they killer complete the mission.
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