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Fun and Games Literature

The Halloween Creatures Book Tag

Rules: Answer all prompts. Answer honestly. Tag 1-13 people. Link back to this post. ( For me it was SnoopyDoo!) Remember to credit the creator. (Anthony @ Keep Reading Forward)< Have fun!   Witch A Magical Character or Book Terry Pratchett’s witches, particularly Granny Weatherwax. And DEATH (preferably in his Hogfather incarnation). No contest.   […]

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Linked Items Reviews

Nicholas Blake: The Beast Must Die

Wow. What a stunner. Blake (aka Cecil Day Lewis) messes with the reader’s mind literally from page 1, and being fully aware of the fact still doesn’t mean you’ll be up to what he is doing — or at least not all of it.  Even to begin talking about the plot would mean giving away […]

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Fun and Games Literature Reviews

Halloween Bingo 2020: The First Week (+1 Day)

This year’s Halloween Bingo started a lot more promising than last year’s with a strong joint entry in Michael Connelly’s Bosch and Ballard series, and in fact, not one of the books I read earned less than a four-star rating — with the standout being Nicholas Blake’s The Beast Must Die, which turned out to […]

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Literature Reviews

Christianna Brand: Green for Danger

This was one of the discoveries of my foray into the realm of Golden Age mysteries; an eerie, claustrophobic, psychological drama revolving around several suspicious deaths (and near-deaths) at a wartime hospital in Kent during WWII.  None of Brand’s other mysteries that I’ve read so far is quite up to this level, but she excelled […]

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Literature Reviews

Pete Brown: Shakespeare’s Local

This is one of those books that I’ve owned way too long before I finally get around to reading them: The discursive — in the best sense –, rollicking tale of one London (or rather, Southwark) pub from its earliest days in the Middle Ages to the 21st century, telling the history of Southwark, London, […]

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Literature Reviews

Bernardine Evaristo: Girl, Woman, Other

Not a proper review, just a short note to say … Heaven knows the Booker jury doesn’t always get it right IMHO, but wow, this time for once they absolutely did.  If you haven’t already read this, run, don’t walk to get it.  And though initially I was going to say “especially if you’re a […]

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Ian Doescher: William Shakespeare’s Star Wars — Verily, a New Hope

Verily, a Great Entertainment “CHORUS: As our scene to space, so deep and dark, O’er your imagination we’ll hold sway. For neither players nor the stage can mark The great and mighty scene they must portray. We ask you, let your keen mind’s eye be chief – Think when we talk of starships, there they […]

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Dorothy L. Sayers: Busman’s Honeymoon

A Lethal Play, or, Sayers’s Last Word on Peter Wimsey and Harriet Vane “PETER (frowns): You know, Harriet, this is one of those exasperatingly simple cases. I mean, it’s not like those ones where the great financier is stabbed in the library –    HARRIET: I know! And thousands of people stampede in and out […]

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Literature Reviews

Margery Allingham: Death of a Ghost

Unlike my reading experience with Allingham’s fellow Golden Age Queens of Crime Dorothy L. Sayers, Agatha Christie and Ngaio Marsh, that with Margery Allingham’s Albert Campion series is a rather checkered one, where instances of true mystery reader’s delight repeatedly follow hot on the heels of groan-inducing forays into clichéd, implausible plots populated by cardboard […]

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Literature Reviews

Ngaio Marsh: Light Thickens

“Duncan is in his grave; After life’s fitful fever he sleeps well; Treason has done his worst: nor steel, nor poison, Malice domestic, foreign levy, nothing, Can touch him further. […] Ere the bat hath flown His cloister’d flight, ere to black Hecate’s summons The shard-borne beetle with his drowsy hums Hath rung night’s yawning […]

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Literature Reviews

Agatha Christie / Matthew Pritchard (ed.): The Grand Tour

Letters and Photographs from the British Empire Expedition 1922 Agatha Christie’s letters, photos and postcards from the expedition to South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, and Canada in which her first husband, Archibald, and she were invited to participate out of the blue shortly after the birth of their daughter Rosamund.  Lovingly edited by her […]

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John Bercow: Unspeakable

An impromptu buddy read with BrokenTune; delivered in Bercow’s trademark style and doubtlessly offering as much fodder to those determined to hate him as to those who regret his stepping down as Speaker: I, on the other hand, found myself glued to my phone — this is a riveting narrative (even the bits about his […]

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Literature Reviews

David Ashton / BBC: McLevy, The Collected Editions, Series 1 & 2

A substantial part of my reading in January was an exercise in Mt. TBR reduction: By far the best (audio)book of this bunch was the first installment of the BBC’s McLevy series, which is based on the real life diaries of Victorian Edinburgh police inspector named, you guessed it, James McLevy.  It features a great […]

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Literature Reviews

Dorothy Dunnett: The Game of Kings

Clearly last month’s reading highlight was the buddy read with Moonlight Reader, BrokenTune and Lillelara of the first volume of Dorothy Dunnett’s Lymond Chronicles, The Game of Kings; a tour de force piece of historical fiction set in the mid-16th century, during the reign of England’s boy king Edward VI (the son of Henry VIII) — […]

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2019 Reading in Review — Nonstandard Edition, Part 1: The “Book Titles” Self-Interview

A few years ago, Olga Godim came up with a fun “reading year in review” version in the form of a self-interview, where the only answers permitted were book titles.  I instantly decided to copy it and add a few more categories of my own.  While I didn’t have time to do this again in […]

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2019 Reading in Review — the Nonstandard Edition, Part 2: The Bookish Academy Awards

The Bookish Academy Awards / Book Oscars is a questionnaire I found a couple of years ago on the Blogger blog of Ashley / Read all the things and decided to steal it for my then-recent and all-time favorites.  Most of my “all-time” answers are still true; however, here’s an edition specifically for my 2019 […]

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Joy Ellis: Jackman and Evans & Matt Ballard Series

    As a new discovery, this is a carry-over from 2018, when Ellis’s Their Lost Daughters completely knocked me sideways during Halloween Bingo.  I’ve since read her entire Jackman & Evans series — my favorite entries still being Their Lost Daughters as well as, coming very close, book 4 of the series, The Guilty Ones […]

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Literature Reviews

Hyeonseo Lee: The Girl with Seven Names

A riveting read and proof positive of the old adage that truth is vastly stranger than fiction: the true story of a young woman who defected from North Korea to China “by accident” right before her 18th birthday and, after ten years of trials and tribulations, eventually ended up in South Korea and, later, in […]

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Literature Reviews

Michelle Obama: Becoming

Mrs. Obama may have chosen to focus on her charity work and on political education instead of seeking a career in party politics after she and her husband had left the White House (and who could possibly blame her?), but I am very glad she also decided to give us her deeply personal perspective on […]

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Literature Reviews

Kofi Annan: Interventions: A Life in War and Peace

Mr. Annan was far and away the most influential and important Secretary General of the United Nations in its more recent history; his memoirs set forth with great passion and understanding how the experience of a lifetime, from growing up in post-WWII Ghana all the way to serving as Under-Secretary for Peacekeeping under Boutros Boutros-Ghali, […]

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