Peepshow by Leigh Redhead

I was looking through the crime section in my favourite local second-hand bookshop, looking for something to read during a car journey.  I picked up ‘Peepshow’ and while I’d never heard of Leigh Redhead before, the fact that she’s an Australian author meant that I had to read this book.  I’m so glad I did. Simone Kirsch is quite a character.  I’ve read the first two books in this series, and now I’m looking for the third.

Peepshow by Leigh Redhead

‘The tripper staggered out of the Palace nightclub into the bright hideousness of dawn.’

Simone Kirsch, twenty something, wanted to join the Victorian police force.  But, because she’s worked as a stripper, the police force aren’t interested.  So Simone goes to a security college and completes a course as a security agent.  But just when her plan looks like working, her best friend and fellow stripper Chloe is kidnapped.  Why?  Well, Chloe works at Melbourne’s notorious Red Room.  Francesco Parisi (the owner) is murdered, and certain people think that kidnapping Chloe will get Simone to find who killed him.  Simone has two weeks to find the murderer, or Chloe will be killed.  The police have not been able to find any clues about the murder, so what chance does Simone have?

Well, Simone Kirsch is not your average PI.  She manages to get on the wrong side of Melbourne’s most corrupt cop, do some serious partying, find love (well, sex, anyway) and take the reader on an interesting trip through Melbourne’s adult clubs in search of a murderer and to try to save Chloe.

‘Peepshow’ is the first in a series to feature Simone Kirsch.  I’ve read the second, and will start the third shortly.  Simone Kirsch is an interesting character.  There are plenty of hard-living male PI characters in the fictional world, but not many personable young females.  Simone, I’m pleased to make your acquaintance.  Thanks for broadening my world of escapist reading material.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith