Mysteries and Crime Fiction

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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Literature Reviews

Patricia Moyes: The Sunken Sailor

I read Moyes’s first Henry & Emmy Tibbett book (Dead Men Don’t Ski) earlier this year and liked it a lot.  While I still liked most of book 2 as well, The Sunken Sailor (aka Down Among the Dead Men) suffers from a bit of a sophomore slump: Moyes first does a great job establishing […]

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Literature Reviews

Christianna Brand: Fog of Doubt

Brand’s fifth Inspector Cockrill mystery, and of all the books by her that I have read (all of them this year), second only to Green for Danger, which remains my favorite among all of her novels. Brand specialized in closed circle mysteries, and apart from the traditional country house settings so prevalent in Golden Age […]

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Literature Reviews

Aimee and David Thurlo: Second Sunrise

Native American police procedural meets vampires, witches and werewolves.  To give the authors their due, I guess with skinwalkers being a key part of Navajo mythology, it’s a proximate thought to capitalize on the past decade(s)’ vampire craze and go full tilt supernatural / paranormal, and the sequence of events that turns our protagonist into […]

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Literature Reviews

Anthony Gilbert: Death in Fancy Dress

This book is probably best described as “Golden Age country house mystery meets Wuthering Heights“.  Lucy Beatrice Malleson was a member of the Detection Club who wrote under several pen names, including Anne Meredith and Anthony Gilbert, and reading her books almost a century after they were first published, it is hard to believe that […]

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Fun and Games Literature Reviews

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

Posting this on Monday instead of Sunday again … oh well. I guess after a near-phenomenal first bingo week it was only to be expected that the second week would not be quite as fabulous. Mind you, I’m not complaining — my card is coming together nicely, and none of the books I read this […]

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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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Literature Reviews

Margery Allingham: More Work for the Undertaker

The thirteenth book in the Campion series; one of the few I hadn’t read yet and thus, a proximate choice for the “13” bingo square.  In tone, I find that the post-WWII stories are markedly darker than the series’s very first entries, which by and large is all to the good, however; even if they […]

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Literature Reviews

Joy Ellis: They Disappeared

Before starting this book, I’d said I hoped Ellis was done with the serial killer plots, as I had a feeling she was at risk of turning into a one trick pony that way — well, let’s say I both did and didn’t get my wish.  (Several gruesome deaths, yes, but not a mentally diseased […]

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Literature Reviews

Michael Connelly: The Night Fire

My bingo pre-read and a very welcome return to Los Angeles — or at least, the version thereof that constitutes the world of Connelly’s characters, which however only ends up making the city a major character of its own in addition to the humans living in it. Harry Bosch may not officially be a cold […]

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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

Halloween Bingo 2020: TA’s Game Preparation Post

Note When updating this post during the game, the books actually selected will be highlighted in bold print and with a check mark (√) next to them. Updates Spell invoked: Bingo Flip with Lora — STONE COLD HORROR replaced by READ BY FLASHLIGHT OR CANDLELIGHT Also, as our game hosts have made it clear that […]

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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

Josephine Tey: Inspector Grant Series

  Having already read two books from Tey’s Alan Grant series (The Daughter of Time and The Franchise Affair) as well as her nonseries novel Brat Farrar in past years, and Miss Pym Disposes at the beginning of this year, I took the combined (re)read of The Daughter of Time and the play Dickon during the pandemic buddy […]

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BookLikes Imports Linked Items Literature Reviews

2020 Mid-Year Reading Review and Statistics

What with the pandemic still very much ongoing, BL acting up again, MR’s and Char’s resulting posts re: BookLikes, the BL experience, and moving back to Goodreads, this feels like a somewhat odd moment to post my half-yearly reading stats.  I hope it won’t be the last time on this site, but I fear that […]

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BookLikes Imports Linked Items Literature Reviews

Ruth Rendell: A Judgement in Stone

DNF @ 30% (approx) “Illiterate” (read: dyslexic) working class home help kills her well-meaning but utterly clueless upper class employers.  The end.  (And because it’s an inverted mystery, we know literally from the first sentence that this is going to happen.)  Aaaannnd … I’m out. I’m not merely bored, though.   Chiefly, I’m furious at […]

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BookLikes Imports Linked Items Literature Reviews

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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BookLikes Imports Linked Items Literature Reviews

Josephine Tey: The Daughter of Time & Dickon

This weekend’s “let’s-forget-the-pandemic” buddy read wasn’t the first time I read Josephine Tey’s setting-the-record-straight-about-Richard III novel, The Daughter of Time, but it was the first time that I did so by reading it together with her play on the same subject (written under the name Gordon Daviot), Dickon, and that combined reading changed my perspective […]

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BookLikes Imports Linked Items Literature Reviews

Val McDermid: Broken Ground

So what happened at the end there, Val?  Why that infernal rush?  Did you suddenly become aware that you were on your way towards producing a minor brick, or did your publisher tell you to cut it short?  There we were, sailing nicely along in the usual 4-stars-or-higher bracket into which this series typically falls […]

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BookLikes Imports Linked Items Literature Reviews

Cyril Hare: Tenant for Death

Well, it turns out RL kept me busy for much longer yesterday than I’d anticipated, so I really only got back to this book today. That said, I truly enjoyed it — even the fact that the murderer turned out to be the most obvious suspect, in the end, didn’t bother me half as much […]

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