Mystery Scene Community

General Discussion => What I'm Reading => Topic started by: JRob on June 11, 2019, 07:28:42 pm

Title: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 11, 2019, 07:28:42 pm
I'm currently working on a re-read of the Eva Gates mystery Reading Up A Storm. It's the third book in her Lighthouse Library series.

I don't typically get to do a lot of re-reading but I joined the mystery book club at my local library and this is the book of the month. I'm about 2/3 of the way through it and I still like it. I wasn't overly fond of the first two books in the series but this book is where I felt the main character FINALLY stopped being such a doormat.

I've got the fourth book in the series but haven't gotten around to reading that one yet.
Title: Re: My latest read is...THE WAREHOUSE by Rob Hart
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on June 12, 2019, 12:48:52 pm
I’ve just finished reading Rob Hart’s THE WAREHOUSE (Crown, August 2019). If you’ve ever wondered uneasily where all this Amazon-taking-over-the-economy is headed, this is the book for you. Hart’s detailed world building is chillingly plausible as he posits a dystopian climate-ravaged future in which Cloud, a gargantuan corporation, offers all one’s needs: “A bed, a roof, and a job for life.”  I found this a compelling, if dismaying, portrait of our possible future. Good tension throughout, interesting characters. The ending was a bit rushed but still effective. This is a novel of ideas and I think it will provide you with plenty of food for thought.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 12, 2019, 05:18:18 pm
Kate, I'll add it to my list. I think I saw something similar in a recent Doctor Who episode.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: jgazis on June 12, 2019, 06:30:10 pm
Last book finished: Cyrano de BergeracCurrently reading: OutlanderLooking forward to: Poulets Grillés (The Awkward Squad) - I reviewed the sequel in English, and enjoyed it a lot, so I ordered the series opener in the original French; also Good Omens - really enjoyed the new streaming miniseries!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on June 19, 2019, 10:58:08 am
I just finished reading Laura Lippman's LADY IN THE LAKE (July, 2019). The quality of the writing is just swoon-worthy. It's a tale of two women in 1960s Baltimore:Cleo Sherwood, a poor young black woman, and Maddie Schwartz, a well-to-do but frustrated suburban wife. The shifting viewpoints come from a variety of characters as well as these two, giving the book a kaleidoscopic quality that brilliantly evokes a time and a place. Lippman beautifully organizes a complex story -- her concerns are much broader than who died and how -- and the emotional payoff at the end is just brilliant. Lippman is one of the best writers in the genre and I can't recommend this highly enough.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 19, 2019, 04:11:46 pm
I just picked up Kate Carlisle's Homicide in Hardcover from the local library as it is the selection of the month for the library's mystery book club. I'm just diving into it so I'm looking forward to seeing how it is since it has been a series I've been wanting to try out.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Brian on June 20, 2019, 10:26:07 am
I just finished The Chain by Adrian McKinty.

I really liked his first few books, featuring Sean Duffy as a police officer in Northern Ireland in the 80's. Excellent in every way.

The Chain is his "American thriller" -- his description. It's got an interesting concept -- Rachel's daughter is kidnapped, and to get her back she has to kidnap someone else's child -- but I found many sections implausible.

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: TeriD on June 20, 2019, 12:27:59 pm
I'm just getting started on William Kent Krueger's "This Tender Land." (Out Sept. 2019) I've never actually read Krueger before, though I've only ever heard the very best things about both his standalones and his Cork O'Connor books. I'm just a few pages in, but the writing is quite beautiful. I can see already why people care so much for his work.

If you are already a fan, I'd be curious to hear from you about why you love Krueger's books. Please share!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 20, 2019, 01:17:28 pm
I just finished The Chain by Adrian McKinty.

I really liked his first few books, featuring Sean Duffy as a police officer in Northern Ireland in the 80's. Excellent in every way.

The Chain is his "American thriller" -- his description. It's got an interesting concept -- Rachel's daughter is kidnapped, and to get her back she has to kidnap someone else's child -- but I found many sections implausible.

So this isn't a Sean Duffy book? I really liked Police at the Station and They Don't Look Friendly Duffy novel (reviewed for MS!).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 20, 2019, 01:18:23 pm
I'm just getting started on William Kent Krueger's "This Tender Land." (Out Sept. 2019) I've never actually read Krueger before, though I've only ever heard the very best things about both his standalones and his Cork O'Connor books. I'm just a few pages in, but the writing is quite beautiful. I can see already why people care so much for his work.

If you are already a fan, I'd be curious to hear from you about why you love Krueger's books. Please share!

Teri,

Sadly, while I do own the first two Cork O'Connor books, I have yet to get around to reading them. If I ever do, I'm sure I'll get back to you on what I thought of them.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Rosetta Oracle on June 20, 2019, 03:56:44 pm
American Homemaker by John Kaine — Interesting cast of characters and quite good pacing.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Brian on June 21, 2019, 01:50:43 pm
I just finished The Chain by Adrian McKinty.

I really liked his first few books, featuring Sean Duffy as a police officer in Northern Ireland in the 80's. Excellent in every way.

The Chain is his "American thriller" -- his description. It's got an interesting concept -- Rachel's daughter is kidnapped, and to get her back she has to kidnap someone else's child -- but I found many sections implausible.

So this isn't a Sean Duffy book? I really liked Police at the Station and They Don't Look Friendly Duffy novel (reviewed for MS!).

No, it's not a Duffy. I talked to him a couple of weeks ago and it sounded like he's put Duffy behind him.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 21, 2019, 04:17:56 pm

No, it's not a Duffy. I talked to him a couple of weeks ago and it sounded like he's put Duffy behind him.

I see. That's a bummer. But thanks for telling me.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Ben Boulden on June 23, 2019, 06:06:27 am
I've been on a Lionel White kick the last few weeks. I started with his classic novel The Killing, which is so much better than the Stanley Kubrick film, and finished (a few nights ago) his underrated Coffin for a Hood. In between, I read A Death at Sea and Operation: Murder. A Death at Sea is the weakest of the four, and the most surprising, aside from The Killing's marvelous ironic and very noir ending, was the climactic scene in Operation: Murder.

Now, I'm on to the current issue of Alfred Hitchcock magazine.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on June 23, 2019, 06:33:32 pm
I've been dipping into DREYER'S ENGLISH: AN UTTERLY CORRECT GUIDE TO CLARITY AND STYLE by Benjamin Dreyer, the copy chief of Random House. This is a truly delightful guide to writing that entertains just as much as it informs. I found myself laughing out loud in a diner while reading this book. "Only godless savages eschew the series comma," Dreyer notes. (He's right about that!) This would be a great gift for a high school graduate going off to college or for anyone who cares about good writing.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kevin Burton Smith on June 26, 2019, 10:53:31 am
It's summertime, and there are just so many books, so many TV shows, so many, well... no, there aren't so many movies. Most of them seem to be aimed at fourteen year olds of all ages.

So what to do? I want something heavy enough to make me think, but breezy enough that it doesn't feel like work.

And then along comes an unexpected surprise: celebrated New York cartoonist, screenwriter and author Jules Feiffer's recent amazing, audacious trilogy of graphic novels KILL MY MOTHER, COUSIN JOSEPH and The GHOST SCRIPT that somehow snuck by me undetected over the last few years.

Taken together, they're like a film noir mini-series, a ball-breaking, heart-wrenching alternative look at America in the 1940s and 50s, full of private eyes, cops good and bad, war heroes, movie stars, gangsters, jitterbuggers, con artists, corrupt politicos, Communists, thugs, drunks, barflies, kids with dreams and adults without any, bouncing from NYC to Hollywood and the Pacific Theatre, theoretically built around the Hannigan clan: a doomed police officer, his frustrated widow, and their pushy, precocious force-of-nature daughter who tears through the series, her ambitions flattening everybody in her way. And it's all illustrated in Feiffer's loosey goosey style, all angst and wild emotion and rubbery layouts, doused with the twitchy, is-it-you-or-is-it-me? neurotic humour Feiffer is known for, and a dark, foreboding sense that all is not right, and may never be; a lingering sense that we're all doomed, if we ignore the past.

It may be odd, but these three glorified comic books are more adult and thoughtful than almost anything playing down at the multiplex in this suburban wasteland, or half the books that have come in over the transom lately. These are Feiffer's first stabs at the graphic novel form, after a long, long career, but they sorta make you wish he hadn't waited until he was in his eighties to give the form a whack.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on July 01, 2019, 12:44:38 pm
I just finished reading Lori Roy's GONE TOO LONG. It's a chilling tale about a small town, Georgia woman whose family has a long history in the Ku Klux Klan and her attempts to end that legacy. Lori Roy has already won two Edgars and I wouldn't be surprised if this is nominated as well. It's a twisting, unsettling story with an unexpected ending.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on July 01, 2019, 12:57:20 pm
And then along comes an unexpected surprise: celebrated New York cartoonist, screenwriter and author Jules Feiffer's recent amazing, audacious trilogy of graphic novels KILL MY MOTHER, COUSIN JOSEPH and The GHOST SCRIPT that somehow snuck by me undetected over the last few years.

Kevin, those Jules Feiffer books sound fantastic! I'm putting them on my reading list, pronto.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 03, 2019, 12:24:10 pm
I just finished reading the Max Allan Collins mystery Girl Most Likely. It was a good read but I thought it could've used a dash more intensity overall.

Now to dive full force into my latest round of review copies.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on July 04, 2019, 04:07:03 am
Just finished BULL MOUNTAIN by Brian Panowich. Really brilliant 'hillbilly noir', gorgeously written. I read and loved LIKE LIONS, the sequel, earlier this year so grabbed the first book from the library last week and devoured it over the weekend.

Now halfway through BLUEBIRD, BLUEBIRD by Attica Locke, again catching up on a great book I didn't get to on release. Marvellous, absolutely terrific. I have an ARC of the sequel, HEAVEN, MY HOME (out in Sept), so wanted to read the first one first.

Other terrific recent reads: THE CHAIN by Adrian McKinty, LADY IN THE LAKE by Laura Lippman, WHATEVER IT TAKES by Paul Cleave, the Natchez Burning trilogy by Greg Iles (been meaning to get to that for a while too), DOWN THE RIVER INTO THE SEA by Walter Mosley (another catch-up), THE WHISPER MAN by Alex North, CONVICTION by Denise Mina, CALL ME STAR GIRL by Louise Beech.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on July 04, 2019, 04:07:56 am
I just finished reading Laura Lippman's LADY IN THE LAKE (July, 2019). The quality of the writing is just swoon-worthy. It's a tale of two women in 1960s Baltimore:Cleo Sherwood, a poor young black woman, and Maddie Schwartz, a well-to-do but frustrated suburban wife. The shifting viewpoints come from a variety of characters as well as these two, giving the book a kaleidoscopic quality that brilliantly evokes a time and a place. Lippman beautifully organizes a complex story -- her concerns are much broader than who died and how -- and the emotional payoff at the end is just brilliant. Lippman is one of the best writers in the genre and I can't recommend this highly enough.

One of my fave reads of 2019, and it's been a year packed with really terrific mystery fiction.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on July 04, 2019, 04:09:43 am
I just finished The Chain by Adrian McKinty.

I really liked his first few books, featuring Sean Duffy as a police officer in Northern Ireland in the 80's. Excellent in every way.

The Chain is his "American thriller" -- his description. It's got an interesting concept -- Rachel's daughter is kidnapped, and to get her back she has to kidnap someone else's child -- but I found many sections implausible.

So this isn't a Sean Duffy book? I really liked Police at the Station and They Don't Look Friendly Duffy novel (reviewed for MS!).

No, it's not a Duffy. I talked to him a couple of weeks ago and it sounded like he's put Duffy behind him.


Update for you Brian. I just interviewed Adrian last week for a New Zealand newspaper - he was done with Duffy before writing THE CHAIN (done with writing, in fact), but is now thinking of writing another Duffy novel or two. Watch this space.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on July 09, 2019, 11:29:31 am
Oh that's great news about more Sean Duffy novels from Adrian McKinty! I really love that series.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 12, 2019, 08:43:07 pm
I just finished up reading the upcoming David Baldacci novel 'One Good Deed'. Now to write up a review draft before starting in on another ARC.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 24, 2019, 04:08:16 pm
Finished up the Ellen Hart ARC "Twisted At The Root"!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on July 25, 2019, 04:48:48 am
Just finished a Roald Dahl book of short stories, some of which were crime-y, all of which were a bit twisted and sinister. Very good.

Now onto I'LL SEE YOU IN MY DREAMS by William Deverell, a recent book in the Canadian crime doyen's Arthur Beauchamp series.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 28, 2019, 07:36:39 pm
I spent the better part of the afternoon and this evening finishing up the ARC of C.J. Box's new book "The Bitterroots".
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 01, 2019, 04:04:17 am
I finished the new Maddie Day Country Store mystery "Strangled Eggs and Ham". I'm a huge fan of the series and this book was just great! My review of it is up on a certain site and I linked it on my personal Facebook page.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 03, 2019, 06:32:47 pm
My local library has a mystery book club and this month's selection was Ingrid Thoft's "Loyalty". I had suggested it and that's what the group picked.

I finished reading it again yesterday and still think it is a fantastic book and the start of what has turned out to be a fabulous series.

I exchanges messages with Ingrid on Facebook on rare occasions so when we picked her book, I sent a message to her. She got back to me a few days later and said that it was great we chose the book and thanked me for suggesting the group read the book.

Then she floored me by offering to Skype in for part of our meeting when we discuss the book! So that's going to be happening this coming week. Well, assuming the library director does what he needed to do by contacting her and doing the finalizing of things.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on August 05, 2019, 01:02:42 pm
Wow, that's great about Ingrid Thoft Skyping with your book club. We were very happy to have interviewed her a few years ago in the magazine. In addition to being a good writer, she was a very intelligent and engaging when it came to discussing her work.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 06, 2019, 03:48:05 am
Kate,

Like I said, I was floored when she just offered to do that. And I loved that interview that was in Mystery Scene.

I've gone to a couple of her book signings and had a great time listening to her talk about her books/writing.

I'm really hoping that people show up to the group in a couple of days, I think they'd really enjoy hearing Ingrid talk.

The library supposedly did a press release up for the local papers and the woman who moderates the meetings sent out an email to everyone that has attended past meetings.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 11, 2019, 08:30:09 am
I just finished reading the 2017 Matthew Betley action thriller "Oath Of Honor".
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 20, 2019, 02:31:32 pm
I finished reading an advance copy of the Christmas themed novella collection "Christmas Cocoa Murder". It has three stories in it. They are written by Carlene O'Connor, Maddie Day and Alex Erickson.

I really enjoyed it and put a review of the book up on another book related site.

Full disclosure, I received the advance copy from author Maddie Day.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 26, 2019, 04:06:02 pm
I finished the Jack Carr thriller "True Believer" yesterday.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 27, 2019, 03:38:41 pm
I finished reading the advance copy of debut novelist Nicole Asselin's "Murder At First Pitch", the first in her Ballpark Mysteries series.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on August 29, 2019, 10:00:25 am
Currently reading I'LL SEE YOU IN MY DREAMS by William Deverell, a doyen of Canadian crime fiction. Not a new book for a review or anything, but just one I'd been looking forward to getting off my shelf. Fascinating thusfar as it takes his longstanding legal eagle hero Arthur Beauchamp reminiscing back to a case early in his career where an indigenous man was at risk of the noose. Deverell is a very fine writer.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 03, 2019, 12:31:48 pm
I finished the Cornelia Kidd novel "Death and a Pot of Chowder". Sadly, what was intended to be the first book in the Maine Murder series is the only book we'll see. The author, real name Lea Wait, passed away a few weeks ago.

I really enjoyed the book and would have loved to see where the story would've gone next.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 08, 2019, 02:09:58 pm
I got my hands on the new Lorna Barrett Booktown mystery "A Killer Edition" and powered my way through it rather quickly. Pretty enjoyable read and continues my love of the series.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 25, 2019, 04:22:31 pm
Besides reading Volumes 1 and 2 of the For Better or For Worse: The Complete Library collections, I finished David Baldacci's Long Road To Mercy. That's the first book in his Atlee Pine series. I got that from the library to read when I received the ARC to A Minute To Midnight which is the follow up book to Long Road To Mercy. I finished that one as well and I'll be working on my draft review to submit to the magazine!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: kmckee on September 29, 2019, 09:38:01 pm
I just finished reading three books by Ovidia Yu ("one of Singapore's best-known and most acclaimed writers") featuring amateur detective Chen Su Lin and set in 1930s Singapore.  Here's what Catriona McPherson had to say about the books:  "Simply glorious.  Every nook and cranny of 1930s Singapore is brought richly to life, without ever getting in the way of a classic puzzle plot.  But what's a setting without a jewel?  Chen Su Lin is a true gem.  Her slyly witty voice and her admirable, sometimes heartbreaking, practicality make her the most beguiling narrator heroine I've met in a long while."   First book is The Frangipani Tree Mystery. Hope Yu continues the series.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 30, 2019, 03:51:47 am
I haven't heard of Ovidia Yu before now, so I'll have to look into the books and see if they interest me. Of course, then if they do I'll be buying the books (or looking to see if my local library might have the books).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 07, 2019, 03:03:20 pm
I finished reading the Agatha Christie novel 'A Holiday For Murder' for my library's Mystery Book Club selection.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 07, 2019, 03:54:06 pm
I just picked up Kate Carlisle's Homicide in Hardcover from the local library as it is the selection of the month for the library's mystery book club. I'm just diving into it so I'm looking forward to seeing how it is since it has been a series I've been wanting to try out.

I've read several of Kate Carlisle's books and have a couple more in my to-be-read pile. I look for cozy mysteries (and other books) related to books and librarys, and I "unofficially" collect books related to Agatha Christie and/or her books.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 08, 2019, 06:41:13 am


I've read several of Kate Carlisle's books and have a couple more in my to-be-read pile. I look for cozy mysteries (and other books) related to books and librarys, and I "unofficially" collect books related to Agatha Christie and/or her books.

I haven't read any more of Kate Carlisle's books yet but she's on the list.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 29, 2019, 06:57:57 pm
They weren't mysteries but I finished three graphic novels that I wanted to read before the year was out.

Star Power and The Mystery of the Zel Gux Dynasty
Star Power and The Lonely War
Firefly: The Sting

Before that I finished the 2nd of three ARCs sent to me by Mystery Scene for review purposes. That one was by S.L. McInnis and it was entitled Framed.

Currently, I'm reading Lethal Agent by Kyle Mills, the latest Mitch Rapp novel which I hope to finish by the end of 2019.
Title: Re: My latest read is...THE WAREHOUSE by Rob Hart
Post by: Becke Davis on December 30, 2019, 12:42:13 am
I’ve just finished reading Rob Hart’s THE WAREHOUSE (Crown, August 2019). If you’ve ever wondered uneasily where all this Amazon-taking-over-the-economy is headed, this is the book for you. Hart’s detailed world building is chillingly plausible as he posits a dystopian climate-ravaged future in which Cloud, a gargantuan corporation, offers all one’s needs: “A bed, a roof, and a job for life.”  I found this a compelling, if dismaying, portrait of our possible future. Good tension throughout, interesting characters. The ending was a bit rushed but still effective. This is a novel of ideas and I think it will provide you with plenty of food for thought.

This sounds intriguing but I'm afraid of that "chillingly plausible" description. I'm looking for escapism right now and the only sci-fi-type books I've been reading (and in some cases, rereading) are Ray Bradbury's books.

I was hesitant to read DARK MATTER by Blake Crouch when it came out, but my brother recommended it and I was surprised how much I liked it. http://blakecrouch.com/dark-matter.php

I still have his book RECURSION in my to-be-read pile - it sounds good, too. Have any of you read it, or his other books?
http://blakecrouch.com/recursion.php
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 30, 2019, 12:50:18 am
I've been dipping into DREYER'S ENGLISH: AN UTTERLY CORRECT GUIDE TO CLARITY AND STYLE by Benjamin Dreyer, the copy chief of Random House. This is a truly delightful guide to writing that entertains just as much as it informs. I found myself laughing out loud in a diner while reading this book. "Only godless savages eschew the series comma," Dreyer notes. (He's right about that!) This would be a great gift for a high school graduate going off to college or for anyone who cares about good writing.

I love this type of book! And since I have no will power (and a growing collection of writing guides) I just ordered myself a copy!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 30, 2019, 12:54:41 am
I'm currently working on a re-read of the Eva Gates mystery Reading Up A Storm. It's the third book in her Lighthouse Library series.

I don't typically get to do a lot of re-reading but I joined the mystery book club at my local library and this is the book of the month. I'm about 2/3 of the way through it and I still like it. I wasn't overly fond of the first two books in the series but this book is where I felt the main character FINALLY stopped being such a doormat.

I've got the fourth book in the series but haven't gotten around to reading that one yet.

Eva Gates also writes as Vicki Delany. I met her at Malice Domestic several years ago. I have some of her Eva Gates titles in my to-be-read hoard, but I've read several of her Christmas mysteries (written as Vicki Delany).

https://www.cozy-mystery.com/eva-gates.html
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 30, 2019, 12:59:39 am
I'm on a Ruth Ware binge at the moment, mixed with an M.J. Rose binge. This week I've read Ware's IN A DARK, DARK WOOD and THE WOMAN IN CABIN 10. Both were excellent mysteries, the latter was actually scary! I still have to read THE LYING GAME and THE TURN OF THE KEY, but my daughter lent me her copy of THE SILENT PATIENT by Alex Michaelides, and if I don't read it soon she's going to have a fit. :-)

I also have a couple cozies waiting to be read, so it's a toss up...
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 30, 2019, 03:42:35 am


Eva Gates also writes as Vicki Delany. I met her at Malice Domestic several years ago. I have some of her Eva Gates titles in my to-be-read hoard, but I've read several of her Christmas mysteries (written as Vicki Delany).

https://www.cozy-mystery.com/eva-gates.html

Yes, I read her Year Round Christmas and Sherlock Holmes Bookshop series.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 30, 2019, 01:24:30 pm
I just finished reading Laura Lippman's LADY IN THE LAKE (July, 2019). The quality of the writing is just swoon-worthy. It's a tale of two women in 1960s Baltimore:Cleo Sherwood, a poor young black woman, and Maddie Schwartz, a well-to-do but frustrated suburban wife. The shifting viewpoints come from a variety of characters as well as these two, giving the book a kaleidoscopic quality that brilliantly evokes a time and a place. Lippman beautifully organizes a complex story -- her concerns are much broader than who died and how -- and the emotional payoff at the end is just brilliant. Lippman is one of the best writers in the genre and I can't recommend this highly enough.

I read this about a week ago. It's a complex story - soooo well written! The multiple viewpoints could have been confusing in less deft hands. As it was, I thought it added to my enjoyment of the book.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Denise on January 04, 2020, 02:21:18 am
I recently read Beating About the Bush, by M.C. Beaton (R.I.P.). I really enjoyed it, and it was sooooo much better than the previous one (Dead Ringer). That one was so bad that I almost gave up on Agatha Raisin! A few days ago, I looked up reviews of Dead Ringer, to see if it was just me, and my opinion was almost universal. I'm glad I gave Agatha another chance, because this one was great! And I loved Wizz-Wazz, the cranky donkey!

Now I'm reading Ghost on the Case, by Carolyn Hart. Those are always fun, although Bailey Ruth's obsession with clothes is sometimes a bit much, with detailed descriptions of every outfit. In this one, a rich man's secretary has been framed for his murder, and I'm suspecting almost everybody!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Brian on January 04, 2020, 09:56:06 am
I just finished The Chain by Adrian McKinty.

I really liked his first few books, featuring Sean Duffy as a police officer in Northern Ireland in the 80's. Excellent in every way.

The Chain is his "American thriller" -- his description. It's got an interesting concept -- Rachel's daughter is kidnapped, and to get her back she has to kidnap someone else's child -- but I found many sections implausible.

So this isn't a Sean Duffy book? I really liked Police at the Station and They Don't Look Friendly Duffy novel (reviewed for MS!).

No, it's not a Duffy. I talked to him a couple of weeks ago and it sounded like he's put Duffy behind him.


Update for you Brian. I just interviewed Adrian last week for a New Zealand newspaper - he was done with Duffy before writing THE CHAIN (done with writing, in fact), but is now thinking of writing another Duffy novel or two. Watch this space.

Craig, that's good to know. When I spoke to him he was in full promotional mode for The Chain and didn't want to talk about Duffy.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: AgathaC on January 04, 2020, 09:59:14 am
I don't see a lot of old books on here but I do like them. I'm working my way through Margaret Millar and just finished the amazing A Stranger in My Grave.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 04, 2020, 11:27:58 am
AgathaC,

In my case, you probably won't see me reading a lot of old books. I might a golden age novel if the mystery book club at my library selects one but I'm usually reading stuff that is being published now instead.


Meanwhile, I finished reading the Kyle Mills thriller LETHAL AGENT. I wrote up a review on Goodreads and shared it on Twitter. The author saw it and thanked me for the review AND A.J. Tata liked the review too, which considering he's a retired Brigadier General, I thought was pretty cool.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 04, 2020, 11:58:20 am
American Homemaker by John Kaine — Interesting cast of characters and quite good pacing.

I always feel a little sad when I hear about authors I'm not familiar with. How would you describe this book - is it dark or more quirky? I read the description on Amazon and it hints at something horrific:

https://www.amazon.com/American-Homemaker-John-Kaine/dp/1916488412
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 10, 2020, 03:45:03 am
By the way, here's what I chose for my ten favorite books of 2019. When I posted the link, I heard from every author on the list, some even shared the link on their social media. Oh and Edith Maxwell shared the link in her monthly newsletter so that was cool.

http://classic-rock-bottom.ning.com/forum/topics/my-top-ten-mysteries-thrillers-of-2019
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 13, 2020, 12:06:28 am
I'm on a Ruth Ware binge at the moment, mixed with an M.J. Rose binge. This week I've read Ware's IN A DARK, DARK WOOD and THE WOMAN IN CABIN 10. Both were excellent mysteries, the latter was actually scary! I still have to read THE LYING GAME and THE TURN OF THE KEY, but my daughter lent me her copy of THE SILENT PATIENT by Alex Michaelides, and if I don't read it soon she's going to have a fit. :-)

I also have a couple cozies waiting to be read, so it's a toss up...

I read THE LYING GAME last week and still have THE TURN OF THE KEY in my to-be-read pile. I also read M.J. Rose's THE LIBRARY OF LIGHT AND SHADOW and still have a week before THE SECRET LANGUAGE OF STONES is due. (I renewed it because I'm not reading as fast as I usually do lately.) I'll probably read the rest of her books before long, too.

I'm currently reading Hank Phillippi Ryan's THE MURDER LIST, which is nice and twisty. I was going to read THE SILENT PATIENT next, but my daughter brought over the new book by Simone St. James - THE SUN DOWN MOTEL: http://crimebythebook.com/blog/2019/9/9/exclusive-excerpt-the-sun-down-motel-by-simone-st-james. I've read all her books. She is a must read for me, probably my favorite gothic author. Years ago I loved gothics by Victoria Holt, and I'd classify some of Mary Stewart's books as gothic, too.

Do you like gothics? If so, what are some of your favorites?
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 13, 2020, 04:03:38 am
I'm not into gothic stories or a whole lot of psychological suspense either.

I generally read stories that fall under the "Blood, Bodies and Bullets" banner or cozies.

I finished the Eva Gates "Lighthouse Library" series book SOMETHING READ, SOMETHING DEAD over the weekend.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on January 13, 2020, 02:34:17 pm
I used to love contemporary gothics like the Elizabeth Peters novels (LEGEND IN GREEN VELVET, THE CAMELOT CAPER, THE JACKAL'S HEAD, etc). These were standalones often featuring an independent young woman on her own in a foreign country, often with archeology/history elements to the plot. I should go look up some of those...

The novels by Barbara Michaels (like E. Peters, a pseudonym for Barbara Mertz) are also excellent gothic novels. These often had a supernatural slant to them.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 13, 2020, 04:14:32 pm
I finished catching up on the Lighthouse Library series by Eva Gates.

I read THE SPOOK IN THE STACKS (which got me accused of reading a book with an oddly racist title at the Dunkin Donuts next to the laundromat where I do my clothes washing), SOMETHING READ, SOMETHING DEAD and READ AND BURIED.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 13, 2020, 06:09:14 pm
I finished catching up on the Lighthouse Library series by Eva Gates.

I read THE SPOOK IN THE STACKS (which got me accused of reading a book with an oddly racist title at the Dunkin Donuts next to the laundromat where I do my clothes washing), SOMETHING READ, SOMETHING DEAD and READ AND BURIED.

Wow, I'm really surprised that your accuser would pick up on "spook" as racist. Even Urban Dictionary identifies it more as a slang word related to government agents and espionage. Since the cover of the book shows a copy of "Sleepy Hollow" as well as pumpkins, a cat and a lighthouse, I think the combination of the title and the cover point to the book being about spooky ghosts.

Was your accuser confrontational or did he/she just toss that comment out there and leave it at that?

A good book and Dunkin Donuts certainly would take some of the pain out of doing laundry!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 14, 2020, 03:52:13 am

Wow, I'm really surprised that your accuser would pick up on "spook" as racist. Even Urban Dictionary identifies it more as a slang word related to government agents and espionage. Since the cover of the book shows a copy of "Sleepy Hollow" as well as pumpkins, a cat and a lighthouse, I think the combination of the title and the cover point to the book being about spooky ghosts.

Was your accuser confrontational or did he/she just toss that comment out there and leave it at that?

A good book and Dunkin Donuts certainly would take some of the pain out of doing laundry!

She struck me as one of those fake "woke" people who find offense wherever they can regardless of reality. Like you said, the book has Sleepy Hollow and pumpkins on the cover, it is pretty clear what the book would be about. I just looked at her and said, "It's a book about Halloween" and turned away from her. She wisely let it go at that.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 14, 2020, 02:42:09 pm

Wow, I'm really surprised that your accuser would pick up on "spook" as racist. Even Urban Dictionary identifies it more as a slang word related to government agents and espionage. Since the cover of the book shows a copy of "Sleepy Hollow" as well as pumpkins, a cat and a lighthouse, I think the combination of the title and the cover point to the book being about spooky ghosts.

Was your accuser confrontational or did he/she just toss that comment out there and leave it at that?

A good book and Dunkin Donuts certainly would take some of the pain out of doing laundry!

She struck me as one of those fake "woke" people who find offense wherever they can regardless of reality. Like you said, the book has Sleepy Hollow and pumpkins on the cover, it is pretty clear what the book would be about. I just looked at her and said, "It's a book about Halloween" and turned away from her. She wisely let it go at that.

You handled that well. It's tricky figuring out which response will defuse the situation and which will trigger a full-on nuclear reaction!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 14, 2020, 03:45:17 pm


You handled that well. It's tricky figuring out which response will defuse the situation and which will trigger a full-on nuclear reaction!

The only problem for other people having a nuclear reaction is that I have a pretty volcanic temper when I get roused so it would be worse for them. This is why I try to have as little damage to my calm  as possible.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 22, 2020, 12:15:40 am
I'm halfway through Elly Griffiths' THE STRANGER DIARIES - I like it a lot! I'm looking forward to reading books from her Ruth Galloway and Magic Men series soon, too.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on February 09, 2020, 09:11:44 am
I took the Lee Goldberg book Lost Hills out of the library yesterday. It was such a thrilling page-turner that I finished it in one sitting just before midnight last night. I loved the book and just couldn't put it down.

Here's my review - https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3182489279
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 09, 2020, 11:19:07 am
Jane Langton was one of those authors I'd heard of but had never read. When she died, all the wonderful comments about her books spurred me to pick up a few. I just finished THE FACE ON THE WALL and I LOVED it! It's underlying - and sometimes not-so-underlying theme - is the dark side of fairy tales in their original versions. I now want to find a book of fairy tales by Perrault!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on February 14, 2020, 03:51:43 pm
Recently finished EIGHT PERFECT MURDERS by Peter Swanson, out next month. Really enjoyed it - lots for mystery lovers to enjoy as it revolves around a bookseller of a mystery store who gets caught up in a case that has echoes of classic mystery novels. Swanson is a superb writer - I've enjoyed several of his previous books, and this one is another cracker.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 14, 2020, 04:04:42 pm
I took the Lee Goldberg book Lost Hills out of the library yesterday. It was such a thrilling page-turner that I finished it in one sitting just before midnight last night. I loved the book and just couldn't put it down.

Here's my review - https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3182489279

It's on my list!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 18, 2020, 02:25:09 pm
I'm halfway through Elly Griffiths' THE STRANGER DIARIES - I like it a lot! I'm looking forward to reading books from her Ruth Galloway and Magic Men series soon, too.

I'm reading THE HOUSE AT SEA'S END, a Ruth Galloway book by Elly Griffiths. I have several of her books in my to-be-read pile now. I think I've read THE JANUS STONE - both the title and the cover are familiar. I may even have it buried in my bookcases someplace.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on February 18, 2020, 03:18:41 pm
I'm currently reading Mo Moulton's THE MUTUAL ADMIRATION SOCIETY: HOW DOROTHY L. SAYERS AND HER OXFORD CIRCLE REMADE THE WORLD FOR WOMEN (Basic, 2019). There's lots of interesting insights into Sayer's life and work plus a good deal of info on life in Oxford and in community theater in England between the wars, health & education of children, developments in women's rights, etc. A thought-provoking book about a group of exceptionally accomplished women.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 18, 2020, 03:56:35 pm
I'm currently reading Mo Moulton's THE MUTUAL ADMIRATION SOCIETY: HOW DOROTHY L. SAYERS AND HER OXFORD CIRCLE REMADE THE WORLD FOR WOMEN (Basic, 2019). There's lots of interesting insights into Sayer's life and work plus a good deal of info on life in Oxford and in community theater in England between the wars, health & education of children, developments in women's rights, etc. A thought-provoking book about a group of exceptionally accomplished women.

I've only read her mysteries and this short story collection (which I loved): https://www.amazon.com/Treasury-Sayers-Stories-Dorothy-L-ebook/dp/B00AF099FC/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=dorothy+l.+sayers+short+stories&qid=1582070074&s=books&sr=1-2

The book you're reading sounds fascinating - I'll check it out!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 28, 2020, 11:30:37 pm
Jane Langton was one of those authors I'd heard of but had never read. When she died, all the wonderful comments about her books spurred me to pick up a few. I just finished THE FACE ON THE WALL and I LOVED it! It's underlying - and sometimes not-so-underlying theme - is the dark side of fairy tales in their original versions. I now want to find a book of fairy tales by Perrault!

I'm working my way through Jane Langton's books. I just finished DEAD AS A DODO and while I loved the Oxford setting (it made me think of Inspector Lewis, a TV series that is set there), I found the creationism theme (Darwin vs. the Church) a little wearing and the humor the not-really-funny sort. So while I have really loved several of the Jane Langton books i've read, this, sadly, isn't one of them. I think my husband might have liked this, but I can't see him every reading a cozy. I'll probably donate this one to the library. It's an interesting book, just not my style.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Brian on February 29, 2020, 02:30:57 pm
Just starting Death Out of Nowhere by Alexis Gensoul and Charles Grenier ... it starts with a writer describing his latest locked room novel, and is supposed to include a locked room lecture, as in The Three Coffins by Carr or Nine Times Nine by Boucher.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on February 29, 2020, 02:44:18 pm
Right now I'm reading ATLAS OF THE ROMAN WORLD by Tim Cornell and John Matthews (Facts on File, 1982) which I picked up in Lyric Bookstore in Saratoga Springs, NY. I've read all of the Lindsey Davis Falco novels as well as her new series about Flavia Albia both of which are set around 70-85 AD in the Roman Empire. ATLAS OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE is excellent, lots of maps, drawings and photos to illustrate a clearly told history of the empire. One of the things I really admire about Davis's books is the understanding of the ins and outs of running an empire, the day to day functions of various offices and departments. This is more evident in the Falco books, the Flavia Albia books are more concentrated on the domestic sphere which is fascinating as well.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 29, 2020, 02:47:49 pm
I always have a little trouble jumping back in time in books - although I found Mary Stewart's Arthurian books addictive. Once I familiarize myself with the time and setting it gets easier for me, so I just need to sit down to read THE SILVER PIGS - without grandkids interrupting, if possible.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on March 05, 2020, 06:39:21 pm
I finished reading WHISKEY SOUR, the first book in the Jacqueline "Jack" Daniels series by J.A. Konrath.

It was this month's mystery book club selection for the local library. I was the one who suggested it and while I liked it overall, there were some things that stuck out as a bit odd for me. And given the makeup of the majority of the book club members being older women, I'm fairly sure that their reaction to the book is going to be negative.

I hadn't read anything about the book prior to suggesting it. I just wanted to read something that I hadn't read before which is why I made the suggestion. I will have to be a bit more selective in the future I think.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on March 05, 2020, 07:21:06 pm
I started thinking about Mary Stewart and discovered two stories that were previously only available as ebooks are now combined in one paperback volume. So I bought and just finished reading THE WIND OFF THE SMALL ISLES and THE LOST ONE. There is a preface by Mary Stewart's niece, which I loved. THE LOST ONE is a longish short story - not quite novella length - and it's pretty much a straight forward mystery, or mystery-adventure.

THE WIND OFF THE SMALL ISLES has elements of mystery - and there are spooky underwater scenes - but I found this one more in the traditional of a Mary Stewart story. The end of this small book includes an excerpt of THIS ROUGH MAGIC. This is not a particular favorite but reading the excerpt has made me want to start a rereading binge. I'll probably hold off on that because I have so many books in the waiting-to-be-read pile right now.

I'm back to THE LOCH NESS PAPERS which I am really enjoying, and after this I've got Carlene O'Connor's MURDER IN AN IRISH VILLAGE up next. ONE NIGHT GONE by Tara Laskowski is also calling out to me.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on March 11, 2020, 06:12:22 pm
I just finished the James R. Benn novel BILLY BOYLE: A WORLD WAR II MYSTERY tonight. For the most part, I really loved the book. I did a brief review of the book on Goodreads which you can read HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3221515321)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on March 12, 2020, 06:52:12 pm
I just finished the James R. Benn novel BILLY BOYLE: A WORLD WAR II MYSTERY tonight. For the most part, I really loved the book. I did a brief review of the book on Goodreads which you can read HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3221515321)

I finished Deanna Raybourn's latest, A MURDEROUS RELATION, in the wee hours of this morning. I've read all the books in this series and once again this one gripped me. There is a sub-plot about Jack the Ripper.

Did any of you see the TV series WHITECHAPEL? That one is fascinating.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on March 13, 2020, 03:31:28 pm

Did any of you see the TV series WHITECHAPEL? That one is fascinating.

I saw the first two seasons but didn't see the last two.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on March 13, 2020, 04:06:11 pm

Did any of you see the TV series WHITECHAPEL? That one is fascinating.

I saw the first two seasons but didn't see the last two.

More Ripper films:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lodger:_A_Story_of_the_London_Fog

I saw this one years ago:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lodger_(1944_film)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on March 14, 2020, 10:27:32 am
There is a superb episode of the science fiction show Babylon 5 entitled "Comes The Inquisitor" I think you'd like. The first time I saw it my mouth dropped and actually saw me say out loud "HOLY S***!" in amazement.

I can't say more but if you get the chance I think you will like that episode.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Denise on March 14, 2020, 10:43:27 pm
Becke, I've seen both versions of The Lodger that you mentioned. I saw the 1944 film first, and later I saw the Hitchcock version (I own it). I probably first watched it when I was taking a class on Hitchcock on B&N University! It was taught by Donald Spoto, who is mentioned in the article you posted, and we used his book for the text.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on March 15, 2020, 10:09:02 pm
Becke, I've seen both versions of The Lodger that you mentioned. I saw the 1944 film first, and later I saw the Hitchcock version (I own it). I probably first watched it when I was taking a class on Hitchcock on B&N University! It was taught by Donald Spoto, who is mentioned in the article you posted, and we used his book for the text.

Hi Denise - I saw the 1944 movie years ago and I thought it was very creepy. I don't think I've seen the other one. I took (and taught) some classes at B&N's online university - I wish I'd caught the Hitchcock class!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on March 16, 2020, 04:30:56 pm
This post isn't about what I'm currently reading but rather what I'll be reading in the coming weeks.

I just got my latest batch of review copies from Mystery Scene and they are quite a mix of stuff to look forward to.

Four books to check out and hopefully enjoy enough to write a review.

Leonard Goldberg's The Art of Deception
Ron Corbett's Mission Road
Robyn Gigl's By Way of Sorrow
The Mist by Ragnar Jonasson (I think my sister reads this author, so she's going to be so jealous!)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on March 16, 2020, 05:45:15 pm
There is a superb episode of the science fiction show Babylon 5 entitled "Comes The Inquisitor" I think you'd like. The first time I saw it my mouth dropped and actually saw me say out loud "HOLY S***!" in amazement.

I can't say more but if you get the chance I think you will like that episode.

My husband used to watch this show a lot - I wonder if he remembers this episode. I'll check!
Title: Re: My latest read is...THE HUNTING PARTY by Lucy Foley
Post by: Becke Davis on March 16, 2020, 05:47:04 pm
I've just been sick enough that reading is difficult, but luckily the headachy part seems to be clearing up. I just started reading THE HUNTING PARTY by Lucy Foley. I'm not very far but I'm enjoying it!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 04, 2020, 10:57:44 am
I finished Catherine Maiorisi's A MATTER OF BLOOD a couple days ago and just got around to doing up my review of it over on Goodreads. I really liked it overall. Here's what I wrote about the book (I hope it does it justice) - REVIEW LINK (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3254060413)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Hannah Adams on April 04, 2020, 03:59:01 pm
I finished Catherine Maiorisi's A MATTER OF BLOOD a couple days ago and just got around to doing up my review of it over on Goodreads. I really liked it overall. Here's what I wrote about the book (I hope it does it justice) - REVIEW LINK (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3254060413)

I haven't read this but the title reminded me, I watched the first season of a British TV series called BLOOD. I have mixed feelings about it but will probably watch season two (so far there are only two seasons). Anybody else watch this?
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 04, 2020, 08:40:09 pm
I haven't read this but the title reminded me, I watched the first season of a British TV series called BLOOD. I have mixed feelings about it but will probably watch season two (so far there are only two seasons). Anybody else watch this?

I haven't. The last British series I checked out was Season 3 of Agatha Raisin and that's because AcornTV is free on my cable system right now.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 06, 2020, 03:23:47 pm
I've been watching THE LOOP, which reminds me of a Twilight Zone/Ray Bradbury mash-up. Sci-Fi and mystery, and the episodes I have watched all had some heartache, too.

 https://www.indiewire.com/2020/04/tales-from-the-loop-review-amazon-sci-fi-series-1202222319/
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 07, 2020, 02:41:26 pm
I finished Leonard Goldberg's THE ART OF DECEPTION today. I'm reviewing it for the magazine so I had to get it read and write my draft review so no spoilers about what I thought here.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 07, 2020, 07:52:30 pm
I finished Leonard Goldberg's THE ART OF DECEPTION today. I'm reviewing it for the magazine so I had to get it read and write my draft review so no spoilers about what I thought here.

I'm reading a short story collection by Peter Robinson: NOT SAFE AFTER DARK. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0062673890/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_image?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I really enjoy short stories, but I get confused about what to call them. Google says: A short story collection is a book of short stories and/or novellas by a single author, as distinguished from an anthology of fiction, which would contain work by several authors (e.g., Les Soirées de Médan). The stories in a collection may or may not share a theme, setting, or characters with one another.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 07, 2020, 08:53:34 pm
I can't say that I read many short stories or novellas. However, because Edith Maxwell has been putting out some short stories/novellas in the past few months, I've been picking them up. (I'm a big fan of her work!)

She had a story in the novella collection Christmas Cocoa Murder. There was her short story in the March/April 2020 issue of Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine. Oh and released just today was an anthology with a story from her. The anthology is called THE BEAT OF BLACK WINGS. It's edited by Josh Pachter and each of the stories is inspired by a Joni Mitchell song. I haven't gotten that book yet but I will be adding it as soon as I can.

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 07, 2020, 10:02:44 pm
I can't say that I read many short stories or novellas. However, because Edith Maxwell has been putting out some short stories/novellas in the past few months, I've been picking them up. (I'm a big fan of her work!)

She had a story in the novella collection Christmas Cocoa Murder. There was her short story in the March/April 2020 issue of Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine. Oh and released just today was an anthology with a story from her. The anthology is called THE BEAT OF BLACK WINGS. It's edited by Josh Pachter and each of the stories is inspired by a Joni Mitchell song. I haven't gotten that book yet but I will be adding it as soon as I can.

The stories are based on Joni Mitchell songs? Count me in!!!!

I discovered Alfred Hitchcock short story collections as well as AH Mystery Magazine and EQ Mystery Magazine when I was in middle school. I also used to read Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, Michael Gilbert and short story collections by Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers and Conan Doyle. I have a collection called CANINE CRIMES by Jeff Marks (of Mystery Scene fame...). If an author I like writes a collection of short stories, I probably have it.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Denise on April 08, 2020, 12:24:35 am
I haven't. The last British series I checked out was Season 3 of Agatha Raisin and that's because AcornTV is free on my cable system right now.

Me, too! I saw that Acorn was free for a while (I think it may have ended today), so I watched seasons 2 and 3. My favorite episode was The Case of the Curious Curate. Lots of laughs in that one! Wilkes was at his most ridiculous, as he was campaigning for something.  I didn't think I had seen all of season 1, but I wasn't sure, so tonight I watched the last 2 in that season. I had seen them before, but I rewatched them anyway. They seem to have left out whatever happened between Agatha, James, and Charles in Cyprus, as at the end of season 1, Agatha was on her way there, and season 2 started when she got home. I take it that James rejected her (again!), and I'm not sure how Charles ended up there, too, but apparently he 'comforted' her.

I'm back rereading Agatha Christies. I read The Secret of Chimneys, and now I'm reading Thirteen at Dinner.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 08, 2020, 01:35:02 am
I haven't. The last British series I checked out was Season 3 of Agatha Raisin and that's because AcornTV is free on my cable system right now.

Me, too! I saw that Acorn was free for a while (I think it may have ended today), so I watched seasons 2 and 3. My favorite episode was The Case of the Curious Curate. Lots of laughs in that one! Wilkes was at his most ridiculous, as he was campaigning for something.  I didn't think I had seen all of season 1, but I wasn't sure, so tonight I watched the last 2 in that season. I had seen them before, but I rewatched them anyway. They seem to have left out whatever happened between Agatha, James, and Charles in Cyprus, as at the end of season 1, Agatha was on her way there, and season 2 started when she got home. I take it that James rejected her (again!), and I'm not sure how Charles ended up there, too, but apparently he 'comforted' her.

I'm back rereading Agatha Christies. I read The Secret of Chimneys, and now I'm reading Thirteen at Dinner.

I may sneak in a few Agatha Christie re-reads in between all the other books I want to read.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 08, 2020, 12:34:13 pm

Me, too! I saw that Acorn was free for a while (I think it may have ended today), so I watched seasons 2 and 3. My favorite episode was The Case of the Curious Curate. Lots of laughs in that one! Wilkes was at his most ridiculous, as he was campaigning for something.  I didn't think I had seen all of season 1, but I wasn't sure, so tonight I watched the last 2 in that season. I had seen them before, but I rewatched them anyway. They seem to have left out whatever happened between Agatha, James, and Charles in Cyprus, as at the end of season 1, Agatha was on her way there, and season 2 started when she got home. I take it that James rejected her (again!), and I'm not sure how Charles ended up there, too, but apparently he 'comforted' her.

I'm sick of imbecilic, idiot and incompetent characters in cozy type mysteries whether they be in books or on TV shows. Wilkes seems to be there for comic relief, but the thing about comic relief is that they are supposed to be funny. He's not. The character is awful and anyone that stupid makes you wonder just how they managed to live so long.

I wish he didn't exist in the TV show (I haven't read the books) because whenever he's on screen I just want to scream.

I'm not positive, but I think the AcornTV free preview is still going on. At least on the Comcast On Demand.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 10, 2020, 09:37:21 am
Denise,

As it turns out the AcornTV preview was going on through yesterday (Thursday 4/9) but it ended after that. I saw the first three seasons of Doc Martin at least though.
Title: Re: My latest read is...AFTER SUNDOWN
Post by: Becke Davis on April 11, 2020, 01:40:30 am
We haven't talked much about all the sub-genres of mysteries, but I am a big fan of romantic suspense. I know it's not for everyone, but I've been a fan for decades and there are many romantic suspense authors I follow.

I've been reading Linda Howard's novels since her first books came out. Recently, she has joined with Linda Jones for a series of paranormals and the two of them have co-authored a new hardcover release, AFTER SUNDOWN. I received an advance copy of this book - which was a thrill, since hardcovers take a chunk out of my book budget.

Linda Howard's books often center around disasters - PREY, where a bear hunt turns deadly; BURN, where a lottery winner goes on a charity cruise that isn't all fun and games; UP CLOSE AND DANGEROUS, where surviving a plane crash is the least of the protagonist's problems. In MR. PERFECT, a joke among friends taps into the psyche of a killer.  In THE WOMAN LEFT BEHIND, a tech geek is reassigned as a drone operator with a paramilitary unit, taking her way, way out of her comfort zone.

Anyway, I was intrigued by the premise of AFTER SUNDOWN. The world in this story is upended by a Coronal Mass Ejection (the "corona" in this case refers to the sun and not coronavirus) that has fried electrical grids worldwide, taken out the internet, and left grocery stores empty and government non-existent. Linda Howard writes romantic suspense so, like virtually all of her books, the hero and heroine meet while facing challenges most of us will (hopefully) never have to deal with. She is known for steamy scenes and this book is no exception.

https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/phenomena/coronal-mass-ejections

There were several scenes that were so believable I was frightened for the inhabitants of the small town that is struggling to survive without most of the comforts that, even with coronavirus, we take for granted today. I think reading this while in quarantine made it hit me a little harder than it might have if I read it before the current pandemic.

Okay, I admit I'm a little confused after looking up Linda Howard's bio. This is what it says on Amazon: 

"Biography

Linda's first book, the historical romance Guardian Angel, was released in 1994. In the years since she's written in several romance sub-genres under several names. In order of appearance, Linda Winstead; Linda Jones; Linda Winstead Jones; Linda Devlin; and Linda Fallon. She's a six time finalist for the RITA Award and a winner (for Shades of Midnight, writing as Linda Fallon) in the paranormal category. Most recently she's been involved in joint projects with Linda Howard, and has been rereleasing some of her backlist in ebook format. More information can be found at lindawinsteadjones.com, where you can sign up for her newsletter, at www.facebook.com/LindaWinsteadJones and www.facebook.com/LindaHowardLindaJones, and on Twitter @LWJbooks."

So here's why I'm confused - I knew Linda Howard's real name was Linda Howington. I did NOT know Linda Jones and Linda Winstead Jones were pen names of hers. Since AFTER SUNDOWN lists Linda Howard and Linda Jones on the cover, I'm not sure how that works. She co-authored it with herself? I'll have to dig into this.

In the meantime, it goes on my keeper shelf with all my other Linda Howard books.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 11, 2020, 09:53:39 am
Romantic suspense isn't one of the subgenres I'm likely to read as I'm pretty sure I'm the least romantic person there is.

But then again, most of the people I talk books with aren't fans of serial killer novels whereas I enjoy them so it is always a case of to each their own with no one right preference.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 11, 2020, 10:25:04 am
Romantic suspense isn't one of the subgenres I'm likely to read as I'm pretty sure I'm the least romantic person there is.

But then again, most of the people I talk books with aren't fans of serial killer novels whereas I enjoy them so it is always a case of to each their own with no one right preference.

I agree. My mom and dad were fans of Sax Rohmer and there were authors my mom liked that I didn't. On the other hand, they weren't into romantic suspense but we all loved Agatha Christie. And my daughter likes scarier books than I do.  It would be boring if we all read the same books!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 15, 2020, 09:10:59 pm
I just finished reading an advance copy of the debut thriller from Robyn Gigl called BY WAY OF SORROW. I'm going to be submitting a review to the magazine so I won't say anything more here for now.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 20, 2020, 07:51:40 pm
I finished the James R. Benn novel THE FIRST WAVE, the 2nd book in his Billy Boyle World War II mystery series. As with the first one, I really enjoyed the story.

I had this one checked out from the library before it was closed so I had plenty of time to read it since the library has yet to reopen.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Hannah Adams on April 21, 2020, 02:21:23 am
I finished the James R. Benn novel THE FIRST WAVE, the 2nd book in his Billy Boyle World War II mystery series. As with the first one, I really enjoyed the story.

I had this one checked out from the library before it was closed so I had plenty of time to read it since the library has yet to reopen.

I'll look for this when my library opens again. I'm in the mood for another novel set in this era. Have you read anything by Mark Mills? You might like Where Dead Men Meet.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 21, 2020, 06:14:03 am

I'll look for this when my library opens again. I'm in the mood for another novel set in this era. Have you read anything by Mark Mills? You might like Where Dead Men Meet.

I have not read any work from Mark Mills so I will add WHERE DEAD MEN MEET to my list and try to check it out whenever the library reopens.

By the way, I'd suggest starting with the first book in the James R. Benn series called BILLY BOYLE first as stuff referenced in Book 2 was in Book 1.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 21, 2020, 03:18:15 pm
I'll add Billy Boyle to my library list!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on April 23, 2020, 04:46:28 am
Read FAIR WARNING by Michael Connelly last weekend - it's not out for a few weeks yet but I got an advance copy. Very good, as usual - features the return of journalist Jack McEvoy and former FBI agent Rachel Walling (THE POET, THE SCARECROW) rather than being a Harry Bosch or Mickey Haller book.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 23, 2020, 09:37:31 am
Read FAIR WARNING by Michael Connelly last weekend - it's not out for a few weeks yet but I got an advance copy. Very good, as usual - features the return of journalist Jack McEvoy and former FBI agent Rachel Walling (THE POET, THE SCARECROW) rather than being a Harry Bosch or Mickey Haller book.

I know that it isn't out yet but it is one of my most anticipated releases for this year.

I'm glad to see that you liked the story!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 23, 2020, 12:52:48 pm
Read FAIR WARNING by Michael Connelly last weekend - it's not out for a few weeks yet but I got an advance copy. Very good, as usual - features the return of journalist Jack McEvoy and former FBI agent Rachel Walling (THE POET, THE SCARECROW) rather than being a Harry Bosch or Mickey Haller book.

I know that it isn't out yet but it is one of my most anticipated releases for this year.

I'm glad to see that you liked the story!

Before I get to his new one, I have some catching up to do. I found a couple of Michael Connelly books in my to-be-read library, so I want to read those soon. Also found a couple of Lee Child books I want to read. Guess I'll have to toss a coin to see what book I'll read next!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 28, 2020, 05:27:30 am
I finished reading the Sheila Connolly book A TURN FOR THE BAD. I did a brief write up on the book that you can read HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3301807606)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 29, 2020, 05:00:34 pm
I finished reading the Sheila Connolly book A TURN FOR THE BAD. I did a brief write up on the book that you can read HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3301807606)

Your review makes me want to read this! I have a funny whiskey/whisky story but I'll save it for later.

I'm starting to make a dent in my to-be-read pile. Yesterday I read S.A. Lelchuk's SAVE ME FROM DANGEROUS MEN.

https://www.salelchuk.com/s-a-lelchuk.html

This is the first book in a series about investigator Nikki Griffin. This book reminds me a LITTLE of Zoe Sharp's Charlie Fox books. Both Charlie Fox and Nikki Griffin can take care of themselves. Both have issues with anger and self-control. In a fight, Zoe would win - she has military training and has learned her skills the hard way. Nikki would be a kick-ass opponent, but her ferocity is anger-driven and sometimes vengeance-driven.

I'm looking forward to more Nikki Griffin books and I'm always eager for more Charlie Fox books. I just noticed Zoe Sharp has a new series, but I'll probably have to wait until libraries reopen before I dig into those.

The book of the day is the late Jane Langton's NANTUCKET NOON. I'm not very far into it, but I've read several of her Homer Kelly books and so far I've liked them all.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 29, 2020, 06:25:51 pm
Sounds interesting Becke.

I'm probably starting the new C.J. Box novel LONG RANGE next.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 30, 2020, 02:59:27 am
I finished NANTUCKET NOON awhile ago and just picked AN ACT OF VILLAINY by Ashley Weaver as my next read. I've been following this series since the first book came out. It's hard to classify - a cozy of sorts. I like the timeframe, the Thirties. This is a new release. One of my favorite authors, Deborah Crombie, compares this series to Rhys Bowen's Royal Spyness books, which I also like.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 30, 2020, 05:21:01 am
I finished NANTUCKET NOON awhile ago and just picked AN ACT OF VILLAINY by Ashley Weaver as my next read. I've been following this series since the first book came out. It's hard to classify - a cozy of sorts. I like the timeframe, the Thirties. This is a new release. One of my favorite authors, Deborah Crombie, compares this series to Rhys Bowen's Royal Spyness books, which I also like.

Do you read the Jungle Red Writers blog? Both Deborah and Rhys are members of the crew there. I'm over there on a mostly daily basis.

I'm also trying to read a couple of graphic novels. The first is OVER MY DEAD BODY by Jay Faerber and the other is SOLAR FLARE VOLUME 3: SARASOTA by James Haick III.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 30, 2020, 05:06:14 pm
I finished NANTUCKET NOON awhile ago and just picked AN ACT OF VILLAINY by Ashley Weaver as my next read. I've been following this series since the first book came out. It's hard to classify - a cozy of sorts. I like the timeframe, the Thirties. This is a new release. One of my favorite authors, Deborah Crombie, compares this series to Rhys Bowen's Royal Spyness books, which I also like.

Do you read the Jungle Red Writers blog? Both Deborah and Rhys are members of the crew there. I'm over there on a mostly daily basis.

I'm also trying to read a couple of graphic novels. The first is OVER MY DEAD BODY by Jay Faerber and the other is SOLAR FLARE VOLUME 3: SARASOTA by James Haick III.

I used to go to Jungle Red all the time - a lot of great authors there. Now I don't get to my favorite blogs very often - not because I don't enjoy them, but because I'm just not on the computer has much as I used to. With kids out of school, my granddaughters are home almost all the time and I don't usually get online until after they've gone to bed. Right now they're walking the dog with their dad so it's quiet around here. :-)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on April 30, 2020, 05:42:54 pm

I used to go to Jungle Red all the time - a lot of great authors there. Now I don't get to my favorite blogs very often - not because I don't enjoy them, but because I'm just not on the computer has much as I used to. With kids out of school, my granddaughters are home almost all the time and I don't usually get online until after they've gone to bed. Right now they're walking the dog with their dad so it's quiet around here. :-)

The benefit of me being completely single and childless is that I get to do these things a lot more. :D
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on April 30, 2020, 11:01:22 pm

I used to go to Jungle Red all the time - a lot of great authors there. Now I don't get to my favorite blogs very often - not because I don't enjoy them, but because I'm just not on the computer has much as I used to. With kids out of school, my granddaughters are home almost all the time and I don't usually get online until after they've gone to bed. Right now they're walking the dog with their dad so it's quiet around here. :-)

The benefit of me being completely single and childless is that I get to do these things a lot more. :D

On the other hand, being in self-quarantine has to be pretty hard when you're on your own. :-(
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 01, 2020, 08:08:28 am


On the other hand, being in self-quarantine has to be pretty hard when you're on your own. :-(

Only if you are a socially active person who needs other people around. While there are those that fit that description. That's not me. I'm good alone, which probably explains why I'm single and childless as well. LOL
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 01, 2020, 03:18:47 pm


On the other hand, being in self-quarantine has to be pretty hard when you're on your own. :-(

Only if you are a socially active person who needs other people around. While there are those that fit that description. That's not me. I'm good alone, which probably explains why I'm single and childless as well. LOL

I had to laugh when I read this. I always thought that if we hadn't married young (we were 19) my husband might have become a hermit or a monk. He married an uber-extrovert from a big family, so every holiday and family get-together was a trial for him. We only had two kids and he handled that pretty well (except when they had birthday parties or brought all their friends over). Now we live with our son and his wife and our two grandkids. My daughter-in-law and I are both the oldest of five kids so a noisy house is nothing new to us. It's taken my husband a little longer to get used to the daily chaos, especially since we started quarantining ourselves in mid-March. He misses his (former) quiet time at local coffee shops.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 01, 2020, 08:21:48 pm

I had to laugh when I read this. I always thought that if we hadn't married young (we were 19) my husband might have become a hermit or a monk. He married an uber-extrovert from a big family, so every holiday and family get-together was a trial for him. We only had two kids and he handled that pretty well (except when they had birthday parties or brought all their friends over). Now we live with our son and his wife and our two grandkids. My daughter-in-law and I are both the oldest of five kids so a noisy house is nothing new to us. It's taken my husband a little longer to get used to the daily chaos, especially since we started quarantining ourselves in mid-March. He misses his (former) quiet time at local coffee shops.

I can be a people person, if it is on my terms. If I have to deal with people on their terms, I'm usually far less interested in being involved.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 02, 2020, 12:04:10 am

I had to laugh when I read this. I always thought that if we hadn't married young (we were 19) my husband might have become a hermit or a monk. He married an uber-extrovert from a big family, so every holiday and family get-together was a trial for him. We only had two kids and he handled that pretty well (except when they had birthday parties or brought all their friends over). Now we live with our son and his wife and our two grandkids. My daughter-in-law and I are both the oldest of five kids so a noisy house is nothing new to us. It's taken my husband a little longer to get used to the daily chaos, especially since we started quarantining ourselves in mid-March. He misses his (former) quiet time at local coffee shops.

I can be a people person, if it is on my terms. If I have to deal with people on their terms, I'm usually far less interested in being involved.

When we lived in Cincinnati, we had a small room we called my husband's "meditation room." I wouldn't mind a room where I could shut myself in to read or write, but that's not going to happen.
Title: A Vicky Hill Exclusive! by Hannah Dennison
Post by: Hannah Adams on May 04, 2020, 12:57:25 am
I read a cozy mystery about a reporter over the weekend. I was a little confused by the title at first. The cover shows a graveyard and a veiled woman dressed in black but the title A Vicky Hill Exclusive! didn't sound like the title of a mystery. It turns out the amateur detective has hopes of a front page feature with a by-line and throughout the book she imagines various headlines.

This is the first book of a new series, and I think it's the author's first book. Her name is Hannah Dennison (her name might have drawn me to this book).

I didn't realize this book was written in 2008 and the author has written lots of books and a couple of series since this came out. Now I don't know what to read next. Her website gives me a lot of choices.

https://www.hannahdennison.com/
Title: Re: A Vicky Hill Exclusive! by Hannah Dennison
Post by: JRob on May 04, 2020, 06:39:56 am
I read a cozy mystery about a reporter over the weekend. I was a little confused by the title at first. The cover shows a graveyard and a veiled woman dressed in black but the title A Vicky Hill Exclusive! didn't sound like the title of a mystery. It turns out the amateur detective has hopes of a front page feature with a by-line and throughout the book she imagines various headlines.

This is the first book of a new series, and I think it's the author's first book. Her name is Hannah Dennison (her name might have drawn me to this book).

I didn't realize this book was written in 2008 and the author has written lots of books and a couple of series since this came out. Now I don't know what to read next. Her website gives me a lot of choices.

https://www.hannahdennison.com/

I haven't heard of this author or series before so I'll have to check it out. Thanks for the tip.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 04, 2020, 06:42:14 am
Meanwhile, I finished the first book in the Sheila Connolly Orchard Mysteries series, ONE BAD APPLE. You can see what I thought HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3313232015).

I also finished the graphic novel thriller OVER MY DEAD BODY by Jay Faerber. I wrote up a review of that too. You can check it out HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3310028656)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 04, 2020, 02:21:30 pm
Meanwhile, I finished the first book in the Sheila Connolly Orchard Mysteries series, ONE BAD APPLE. You can see what I thought HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3313232015).

I also finished the graphic novel thriller OVER MY DEAD BODY by Jay Faerber. I wrote up a review of that too. You can check it out HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3310028656)

I'll go read your reviews now, but I have to say, that's a dangerous pastime for me. I usually end up ordering copies online.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 04, 2020, 04:02:36 pm
I definitely want to read ONE BAD APPLE now - the other book might be a little scary for me!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 04, 2020, 08:29:48 pm
I definitely want to read ONE BAD APPLE now - the other book might be a little scary for me!

Yeah, I don't think the graphic novel would be something you'd be interested in. I hope you like ONE BAD APPLE.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 06, 2020, 10:40:05 am
I don't do it often, but I'm actually reading two books at the same time right now. It's weird for me because I like to read one at a time to keep the stories straight but for some reason I just felt like reading the new C.J. Box and the first book in Jenn McKinlay's Library Lovers mystery series and couldn't decide which one should come first so I just started reading both of them.

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 07, 2020, 05:13:34 am
I ended up just plowing through the C.J. Box thriller LONG RANGE. I had left off about a third of the way through the book on Tuesday. When I picked it up on Wednesday, the plan was to alternate with the other book I was reading. But I got so into the naturally flowing narrative that I couldn't put it down until I was finished.

You can check out my brief thoughts on the book HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3320864587)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 07, 2020, 05:44:01 pm
This doesn't sound like a book I would normally read, but your review is intriguing. I'll put it on my library list for later.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 07, 2020, 06:51:12 pm
I finished the Jenn McKinlay mystery Books Can Be Deceiving tonight. I haven't written up a review of it yet but I quite enjoyed it and I'm glad I've got the next few books in the series in my TBR pile(s) waiting to be read.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 08, 2020, 12:52:46 am

I used to go to Jungle Red all the time - a lot of great authors there. Now I don't get to my favorite blogs very often - not because I don't enjoy them, but because I'm just not on the computer has much as I used to. With kids out of school, my granddaughters are home almost all the time and I don't usually get online until after they've gone to bed. Right now they're walking the dog with their dad so it's quiet around here. :-)

The benefit of me being completely single and childless is that I get to do these things a lot more. :D

On the other hand, being in self-quarantine has to be pretty hard when you're on your own. :-(
I finished the Jenn McKinlay mystery Books Can Be Deceiving tonight. I haven't written up a review of it yet but I quite enjoyed it and I'm glad I've got the next few books in the series in my TBR pile(s) waiting to be read.

I'm not making much progress reading this week. I'm still working on DOUBLE LIFE by Flynn Berry - I like it but every time I start reading the phone rings or there's some kind of emergency. So far this week my husband was diagnosed with bacterial pneumonia and my daughter was rushed to the hospital with a possible heart attack. Her blood pressure spike to a scary number but it after a ton of tests they don't think it was a heart attack. They are still waiting for test results but her BP went way down and they discharged her. So I'm a little flaky and unfocused today. What a week!

I'm also looking forward to a couple of cozies in my waiting-to-be-read pile.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 08, 2020, 08:15:56 am
Wow Becke,

I hope everyone around you gets healthy soon. That's some awful news to read about for sure.

The review of the Jenn McKinlay book can now be seen HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3320865291)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 09, 2020, 02:04:06 am
Wow Becke,

I hope everyone around you gets healthy soon. That's some awful news to read about for sure.

The review of the Jenn McKinlay book can now be seen HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3320865291)

I also like books about books, so your review is either going to make yet another dent in my bank account OR I'm going to need to bring some heavy duty bags on my next trip to the library. (Whenever it opens, that is!)

Thanks for the recommendation!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on May 10, 2020, 07:13:39 am
Read A GATHERING DARK by Candice Fox (new LA-set dark tale from award-winning Australian author), very good) and WALLEYE JUNCTION by Karin Salvalaggio (third in her Montana-set Macy Greeley series, a few years old, enjoyable read) this week.

Now onto A CRACK IN THE WALL by Claudia Pineiro, the bestselling Argentinean crime writer. Promising thusfar.

Best wishes and kind thoughts for you and your family Becke. Hope the coming days bring good news.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 10, 2020, 08:54:52 am
Craig, I've never read that Karin Salvalaggio series but I'm going to check it out to see if it might be something I might like to read.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 10, 2020, 10:30:12 pm
Read A GATHERING DARK by Candice Fox (new LA-set dark tale from award-winning Australian author), very good) and WALLEYE JUNCTION by Karin Salvalaggio (third in her Montana-set Macy Greeley series, a few years old, enjoyable read) this week.

Now onto A CRACK IN THE WALL by Claudia Pineiro, the bestselling Argentinean crime writer. Promising thusfar.

Best wishes and kind thoughts for you and your family Becke. Hope the coming days bring good news.

I love learning about all these authors I hadn't come across before. When the library reopens, my card is going to be smoking!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 10, 2020, 10:39:27 pm
Jay - I don't remember if you specifically recommended Maddie Day's MURDER ON CAPE COD or if I just randomly selected it, but I am enjoying it. My brother and sister-in-law live in New England and spend a lot of time at Cape Cod. My uncle used to go there a lot, too. I've spent a lot of time in New England but I've never been to Cape Cod or anyplace on the New England coast.

My son and both of my brothers love to travel by bike, and bike rentals (Divvy Bikes) were very popular in Chicago, where we used to live. There are bike rental programs here in Eugene, too. I follow another cozy mystery series that involves a bike rental business - Duffy Brown's Cycle Path mysteries. I've read two of them and I think the third one comes out this summer.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 11, 2020, 05:36:49 am
Jay - I don't remember if you specifically recommended Maddie Day's MURDER ON CAPE COD or if I just randomly selected it, but I am enjoying it. My brother and sister-in-law live in New England and spend a lot of time at Cape Cod. My uncle used to go there a lot, too. I've spent a lot of time in New England but I've never been to Cape Cod or anyplace on the New England coast.

My son and both of my brothers love to travel by bike, and bike rentals (Divvy Bikes) were very popular in Chicago, where we used to live. There are bike rental programs here in Eugene, too. I follow another cozy mystery series that involves a bike rental business - Duffy Brown's Cycle Path mysteries. I've read two of them and I think the third one comes out this summer.

I'm not sure if I recommended Maddie Day's MURDER ON CAPE COD specifically either. I just flat out recommend reading all of the books written by Edith Maxwell under her name or the Maddie Day pseudonym. She's just a fantastically entertaining writer in my opinion.

I live just off the Cape but tend to avoid going over the bridge much at all, particularly from late May to mid-September when it is tourist season and the traffic is a disaster at best.

I'm glad you are enjoying the series. And book 2, MURDER AT THE TAFFY SHOP, is even better!

Currently I'm reading Sheila Connolly's ROTTEN TO THE CORE, the 2nd book in her Orchard Mystery series. I bought a cheap used copy off of eBay because I really didn't want to wait for the stores to reopen to read the next book in the series.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 11, 2020, 11:01:31 am
I've found some used books at online Goodwill stores. I feel a little guilty because I know buying used books doesn't put money in the author's pocket. At least it doesn't directly - but, on the other hand, if I discover an author or a series by reading a used book, I can almost guarantee I'll be buying some new books as I read the rest of the series (or the author's backlist).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 11, 2020, 07:39:43 pm
I've found some used books at online Goodwill stores. I feel a little guilty because I know buying used books doesn't put money in the author's pocket. At least it doesn't directly - but, on the other hand, if I discover an author or a series by reading a used book, I can almost guarantee I'll be buying some new books as I read the rest of the series (or the author's backlist).

I don't have the feeling of guilt that you have when I buy used books. But like you, I do buy the author's new books if I like what I read from the used purchases. I balance it out so I am good with that.

Oh, and I finished ROTTEN TO THE CORE. Here's what I thought of the book (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3328426190).



Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 11, 2020, 10:09:21 pm
I've found some used books at online Goodwill stores. I feel a little guilty because I know buying used books doesn't put money in the author's pocket. At least it doesn't directly - but, on the other hand, if I discover an author or a series by reading a used book, I can almost guarantee I'll be buying some new books as I read the rest of the series (or the author's backlist).

I don't have the feeling of guilt that you have when I buy used books. But like you, I do buy the author's new books if I like what I read from the used purchases. I balance it out so I am good with that.

Oh, and I finished ROTTEN TO THE CORE. Here's what I thought of the book (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3328426190).

Thanks for the link to your review. I'm looking forward to reading this series now. I must admit, I go a little bananas when I find misused words in a book. I notice typos/misspellings but I hope those are printing errors rather than neglect on the part of the author or publisher.

I try to forget this type of error - if I dwell on it I know it will drive me up the wall. I occasionally receive Advance Reader Copies and I'm assuming you (as a reviewer) receive a lot more than I do. I've learned to be very forgiving of ARCs - often they will have a number of errors that are corrected by the official publishing date. I feel sorry for authors when there are errors not of their doing - that must be so frustrating!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 12, 2020, 09:39:12 am

Thanks for the link to your review. I'm looking forward to reading this series now. I must admit, I go a little bananas when I find misused words in a book. I notice typos/misspellings but I hope those are printing errors rather than neglect on the part of the author or publisher.

I try to forget this type of error - if I dwell on it I know it will drive me up the wall. I occasionally receive Advance Reader Copies and I'm assuming you (as a reviewer) receive a lot more than I do. I've learned to be very forgiving of ARCs - often they will have a number of errors that are corrected by the official publishing date. I feel sorry for authors when there are errors not of their doing - that must be so frustrating!

The advance copies are always uncorrected so I expect mistakes there. I just thought it was perversely funny that a couple of wrong words made it through every stage of editing. I don't dwell on it when I'm reading the book, I just thought it would make a nice little sidenote in the review. It didn't affect whether or not I liked the story though.


Meanwhile, I might be going back to work starting Monday so I'm going to work on getting one more book read before the end of the week. Once I go back, my reading time will obviously be cut down.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 12, 2020, 11:20:00 pm

Thanks for the link to your review. I'm looking forward to reading this series now. I must admit, I go a little bananas when I find misused words in a book. I notice typos/misspellings but I hope those are printing errors rather than neglect on the part of the author or publisher.

I try to forget this type of error - if I dwell on it I know it will drive me up the wall. I occasionally receive Advance Reader Copies and I'm assuming you (as a reviewer) receive a lot more than I do. I've learned to be very forgiving of ARCs - often they will have a number of errors that are corrected by the official publishing date. I feel sorry for authors when there are errors not of their doing - that must be so frustrating!

The advance copies are always uncorrected so I expect mistakes there. I just thought it was perversely funny that a couple of wrong words made it through every stage of editing. I don't dwell on it when I'm reading the book, I just thought it would make a nice little sidenote in the review. It didn't affect whether or not I liked the story though.


Meanwhile, I might be going back to work starting Monday so I'm going to work on getting one more book read before the end of the week. Once I go back, my reading time will obviously be cut down.

My reading time has mostly been cut down by school and day care being closed. My son and daughter-in-law are teaching classes online, so Marty and I try to keep the girls occupied when our help is needed. Not complaining - I feel so sorry for parents and grandparents who don't live near their kids and grandkids. My daughter only lives a mile away and I still wish I could see her more.

At least we've had some wonderful warm weather so we've all been able to spend time outdoors, but this week the weather has turned cooler and very rainy. That's good for preventing wildfires, but not so good for playing and/or reading outside. :-(

I hope all of you are managing to read and relax during this time of social distancing. I wonder how authors will work the pandemic into their mystery plots?
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 13, 2020, 07:49:31 am

I hope all of you are managing to read and relax during this time of social distancing. I wonder how authors will work the pandemic into their mystery plots?

I kind of hope they don't. Or maybe mention it in passing as if it is already over in the fictional world.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 14, 2020, 12:59:36 am
Jay - I don't remember if you specifically recommended Maddie Day's MURDER ON CAPE COD or if I just randomly selected it, but I am enjoying it. My brother and sister-in-law live in New England and spend a lot of time at Cape Cod. My uncle used to go there a lot, too. I've spent a lot of time in New England but I've never been to Cape Cod or anyplace on the New England coast.

My son and both of my brothers love to travel by bike, and bike rentals (Divvy Bikes) were very popular in Chicago, where we used to live. There are bike rental programs here in Eugene, too. I follow another cozy mystery series that involves a bike rental business - Duffy Brown's Cycle Path mysteries. I've read two of them and I think the third one comes out this summer.

I'm almost finished with MURDER ON CAPE COD and I want to comment on one character in particular - Belle, the African Gray Parrot. I've never had a pet bird, but several years ago I read a fascinating book by an author I've met, Jenny Gardiner, called "Winging It: A Memoir of Caring for a Vengeful Parrot Who's Determined to Kill Me."  It's been re-released with the title "Bite Me: A parrot, a family, and a whole lot of flesh wounds." I'm curious about Bella, who is more entertaining than vicious, and I wonder who Edith/Maddie modeled her on.

Okay, got to go - I'm determined to finish this book tonight!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 14, 2020, 07:41:52 am

I'm almost finished with MURDER ON CAPE COD and I want to comment on one character in particular - Belle, the African Gray Parrot. I've never had a pet bird, but several years ago I read a fascinating book by an author I've met, Jenny Gardiner, called "Winging It: A Memoir of Caring for a Vengeful Parrot Who's Determined to Kill Me."  It's been re-released with the title "Bite Me: A parrot, a family, and a whole lot of flesh wounds." I'm curious about Bella, who is more entertaining than vicious, and I wonder who Edith/Maddie modeled her on.

Okay, got to go - I'm determined to finish this book tonight!

You could always go on Facebook and ask her. :D
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 17, 2020, 12:26:31 am
Good point - I'll do that!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 26, 2020, 09:28:13 am
I finished reading the third book in Sheila Connolly's Orchard Mystery series. However, I didn't like it nearly as much as the first two books. I thought it gave short shrift to the actual murder mystery in all honesty. You can check out my thoughts HERE (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3350624263).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Kate Stine, Editor on May 26, 2020, 10:09:11 am
I just finished reading the science fiction / mystery LOCK IN by John Scalzi. It was just terrific. Scalzi imagines a pandemic has hit the world that leaves a small percentage of people mentally unharmed but physically paralyzed and "locked in." The world changes to meet the challenge of these sufferers of "Haydens's syndrome," often called simply Haydens. Technology evolves to the point that the Haydens can borrow the bodies of "Integrators" or can congregate create their own society in the "Agora," an online space for Haydens.

When an Integrator kills someone, who exactly was in charge when the murder happened? It's get complicated fast and our detective, rookie FBI agent Chris Shane, himself a Hayden, has to investigate.

Scalzi is a wonder at world-building. The complicated adjustments the world has made for the Haydens are skillfully described in great detail without slowing down the narrative at all. The Haydens have formed a complex new human society and the investigation takes place very believably within these new constraints. There's lots of humor and really good character development. It's easy to see why this got starred Kirkus, Booklist and Publishers Weekly reviews. It should have gotten an Edgar mention, in my opinion.

Anyway, there's a follow-up titled HEAD ON, which I read first and was also very enjoyable. Start with LOCKED IN though for best effect and expierience a talented storyteller at the top of his game.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on May 26, 2020, 10:54:31 am
I've heard of Scalzi but never read any of his work. The book does sound interesting but I don't think I'll be able to pick it up with all the mystery stuff I've got backed up on me already.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on May 26, 2020, 11:52:48 am
Just read CAPTAINS OUTRAGEOUS, a middle-of-the-series Hap and Leonard novel from Joe R Lansdale.

Fantastic.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 26, 2020, 05:36:55 pm
Just read CAPTAINS OUTRAGEOUS, a middle-of-the-series Hap and Leonard novel from Joe R Lansdale.

Fantastic.

Just added it to my list.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on May 28, 2020, 10:08:49 pm
I just finished reading the science fiction / mystery LOCK IN by John Scalzi. It was just terrific. Scalzi imagines a pandemic has hit the world that leaves a small percentage of people mentally unharmed but physically paralyzed and "locked in." The world changes to meet the challenge of these sufferers of "Haydens's syndrome," often called simply Haydens. Technology evolves to the point that the Haydens can borrow the bodies of "Integrators" or can congregate create their own society in the "Agora," an online space for Haydens.

When an Integrator kills someone, who exactly was in charge when the murder happened? It's get complicated fast and our detective, rookie FBI agent Chris Shane, himself a Hayden, has to investigate.

Scalzi is a wonder at world-building. The complicated adjustments the world has made for the Haydens are skillfully described in great detail without slowing down the narrative at all. The Haydens have formed a complex new human society and the investigation takes place very believably within these new constraints. There's lots of humor and really good character development. It's easy to see why this got starred Kirkus, Booklist and Publishers Weekly reviews. It should have gotten an Edgar mention, in my opinion.

Anyway, there's a follow-up titled HEAD ON, which I read first and was also very enjoyable. Start with LOCKED IN though for best effect and expierience a talented storyteller at the top of his game.

These sound interesting! I put them on my "when the library opens again" book list. :-)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 05, 2020, 05:57:09 am
I haven't written a review of it yet, but I finished the new Michael Connelly thriller FAIR WARNING yesterday.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on June 05, 2020, 02:04:47 pm
I haven't written a review of it yet, but I finished the new Michael Connelly thriller FAIR WARNING yesterday.

If we were having a reading race, you would be winning by a long shot!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 06, 2020, 05:34:57 am
I haven't written a review of it yet, but I finished the new Michael Connelly thriller FAIR WARNING yesterday.

If we were having a reading race, you would be winning by a long shot!

I'm back to work on Monday, so you'll have time to catch up since I'll be able to do less reading during the daytime.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on June 08, 2020, 12:17:41 pm
I just reread John Sherwood's THE MANTRAP GARDEN. I dug out this vintage book because of our garden-related mysteries feature, and it holds up really well. While the book is set in and around a stately home garden, and in many ways it is still a cozy, in other ways it is unexpected.

For one thing, there is a fascinating section that flashes back to WWII and the work at Bletchley to break the Enigma cipher. I've read other books about this and I'd forgotten the Enigma code played a part in this mystery.  There is also industrial espionage on an international scale.

The garden featured in this book was originally designed by Gertrude Jekyll, and there are many quotes from her books scattered throughout.

Although the book mentions Gertrude Jekyll designed in the United States, it doesn't mention that she never actually visited the USA. She only designed three gardens in this country, and her plans were based on detailed plans of the garden sites.

Gertrude Jekyll - Gardens in America
lists the following U.S. gardens:

https://gertrudejekyll.co.uk/gardens_in_america/#:~:text=She%20wrote%20articles%20for%20American,influential%20in%20garden%20design%20circles.&text=During%20her%20later%20years%2C%20she,by%20meticulous%20attention%20to%20detail.

Gertrude Jekyll’s American gardens were as follows:
1914 Elmhurst, Ohio
1925 Cotswold Cottage, Greenwich, Connecticut
1926 Old Glebe House, Woodbury, Connecticut, which was restored during the 1990s and can be visited.

It's a well-kept secret that she also designed a garden at the Groesbeck Estate, now part of the Cincinnati Nature Center. Although her original plans have been saved for posterity, the garden she designed was never implemented because the site was so steep it wasn't considered feasible. Elements of her design, including stone paths, were installed and have been preserved.

 
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 08, 2020, 04:00:20 pm
Glad you liked that book Becke.

I started reading a new book today on my lunch break. I hope that I can get a bunch of reading done over the course of the week so I finish it in a timely fashion.

In the meantime, here's that review for Michael Connelly's FAIR WARNING (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3262795317).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on June 09, 2020, 12:53:38 am
Glad you liked that book Becke.

I started reading a new book today on my lunch break. I hope that I can get a bunch of reading done over the course of the week so I finish it in a timely fashion.

In the meantime, here's that review for Michael Connelly's FAIR WARNING (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3262795317).

I'm kind of glad you didn't give this a rave review. I recently spent some money at ABE Books, picking up a bunch of vintage mysteries I'm eager to read. For some reason coronavirus and its attendant social distancing is making me want to go back and read old mysteries.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on June 09, 2020, 04:12:19 am
I have entirely too many new books to read that I don't have time to go back and read older material. At least not if I ever hope to work down this pile.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on June 11, 2020, 02:07:18 am
Just read CAPTAINS OUTRAGEOUS, a middle-of-the-series Hap and Leonard novel from Joe R Lansdale.

Fantastic.

Just added it to my list.

Forget my list. I just placed an order with ABE (used/vintage books) for this plus some other books you all have recommended. I hope it will arrive soon!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 08, 2020, 04:02:00 am
I finished reading two books for review purposes. They were Jennifer Greer's debut thriller A DESPERATE PLACE and Ellen Hart's IN A MIDNIGHT WOOD.

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 08, 2020, 12:07:12 pm
I finished reading two books for review purposes. They were Jennifer Greer's debut thriller A DESPERATE PLACE and Ellen Hart's IN A MIDNIGHT WOOD.

Will those reviews appear in Mystery Scene or some other publication? I received an advance copy of Sara Paretsky's short story collection, LOVE AND OTHER CRIMES. I've been in the mood for short stories so I want to dig into that one next.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 08, 2020, 04:40:57 pm
I finished reading two books for review purposes. They were Jennifer Greer's debut thriller A DESPERATE PLACE and Ellen Hart's IN A MIDNIGHT WOOD.

Will those reviews appear in Mystery Scene or some other publication? I received an advance copy of Sara Paretsky's short story collection, LOVE AND OTHER CRIMES. I've been in the mood for short stories so I want to dig into that one next.

I haven't gotten the edits back yet, but assuming they are accepted they would be in the next issue of Mystery Scene. They are the only publication I write for (not counting when I do my own personal reviews on my Goodreads page).

I am hoping to pick up that Sara Paretsky book soon. I am getting the new Kristen Lepionka book ONCE YOU GO THIS FAR on Friday.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 10, 2020, 03:09:10 pm
I finished reading Maddie Day's NACHO AVERAGE MURDER today. I haven't written up a Goodreads review yet but I'll add it here once I do.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 10, 2020, 10:38:58 pm
I finished reading two books for review purposes. They were Jennifer Greer's debut thriller A DESPERATE PLACE and Ellen Hart's IN A MIDNIGHT WOOD.

I've read and liked books by both of those authors.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 12, 2020, 09:10:29 am
My daughter gave me a Book of the Month club mystery that she liked. I stayed up until dawn reading it. Very spooky! HOME BEFORE DARK by Riley Sager.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 17, 2020, 03:55:16 am
You can check out my write up on Maddie Day's NACHO AVERAGE MURDER via this Goodreads link (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3431192894).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 18, 2020, 12:35:45 am
I've got so many books waiting to be read, I'm getting a little frantic! Yesterday I read G. M. Malliet's IN PRIOR'S WOOD. I've read a couple books in her Max Tudor series and I've liked them all.

Now I'm almost finished with DEATH AT BEACON COTTAGE by Betty Rowlands - the second book I've read by this author. I love her covers!(https://cdn.waterstones.com/bookjackets/large/9781/7868/9781786819918.jpg)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 18, 2020, 08:18:01 am
That is a pretty eye-catching cover for sure.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 18, 2020, 07:15:49 pm
That is a pretty eye-catching cover for sure.

I've got a collection of thatched cottages and paintings of thatched cottages, so I feel like I should just frame her books!

I finished this one and I'm halfway through another one of Edith's books - A TINE TO LIVE, A TINE TO DIE.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 19, 2020, 09:05:04 am
That is a pretty eye-catching cover for sure.

I've got a collection of thatched cottages and paintings of thatched cottages, so I feel like I should just frame her books!

I finished this one and I'm halfway through another one of Edith's books - A TINE TO LIVE, A TINE TO DIE.

I finished Matthew Betley's thriller RULES OF WAR last night.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 19, 2020, 07:13:30 pm
That is a pretty eye-catching cover for sure.

I've got a collection of thatched cottages and paintings of thatched cottages, so I feel like I should just frame her books!

I finished this one and I'm halfway through another one of Edith's books - A TINE TO LIVE, A TINE TO DIE.

I finished Matthew Betley's thriller RULES OF WAR last night.

Your reviews are dangerous to me. I'm now hooked on Michael Stanley's Kubu books - I have a couple in my waiting-to-be-read pile but I want to read all of Edith's books first. At least, all that are sitting on my desk. I really enjoyed A TINE TO LIVE, A TINE TO DIE. When I started to read it I forgot it was the first book in the series. It was funny to see characters I knew from the later books being introduced. I often read series books out of order - I do like to go back to the beginning so I can find out the background of the various characters and their relationships.

I'm not a farmer - flowers, shrubs and trees are more my speed - but I'm cringing when plants are sabotaged. It's weird, but the murder at the beginning of the book didn't bother me as much as the "planticides."
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 20, 2020, 03:50:21 am


Your reviews are dangerous to me. I'm now hooked on Michael Stanley's Kubu books - I have a couple in my waiting-to-be-read pile but I want to read all of Edith's books first. At least, all that are sitting on my desk. I really enjoyed A TINE TO LIVE, A TINE TO DIE. When I started to read it I forgot it was the first book in the series. It was funny to see characters I knew from the later books being introduced. I often read series books out of order - I do like to go back to the beginning so I can find out the background of the various characters and their relationships.

I'm not a farmer - flowers, shrubs and trees are more my speed - but I'm cringing when plants are sabotaged. It's weird, but the murder at the beginning of the book didn't bother me as much as the "planticides."

Well, I'm glad that my reviews are getting someone to buy books! I prefer to read the series in order if I can.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on July 20, 2020, 07:02:38 am
I've had a pretty terrific run of reading lately, with a lot of great new/upcoming books (some for review for Mystery Scene + others where I was sent ARCs etc, and others which I've just grabbed off my shelf), which is lovely given all the uncertainty and strange times we're living through.

I'd happily and heartily recommend any of these:

- BLACKTOP WASTELAND by SA Cosby
- WE ALL LOOK THE SAME IN THE DARK by Julia Heaberlin
- HINTON HOLLOW DEATH TRIP by Will Carver
- THE SHADOW FRIEND by Alex North (aka THE SHADOWS in the United States)
- THE GIRL IN THE MIRROR by Rose Carlyle
- THE BRIGHT LANDS by John Fram
- THE THURSDAY MURDER CLUB by Richard Osman
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 20, 2020, 03:20:05 pm
I've had a pretty terrific run of reading lately, with a lot of great new/upcoming books (some for review for Mystery Scene + others where I was sent ARCs etc, and others which I've just grabbed off my shelf), which is lovely given all the uncertainty and strange times we're living through.

I'd happily and heartily recommend any of these:

- BLACKTOP WASTELAND by SA Cosby
- WE ALL LOOK THE SAME IN THE DARK by Julia Heaberlin
- HINTON HOLLOW DEATH TRIP by Will Carver
- THE SHADOW FRIEND by Alex North (aka THE SHADOWS in the United States)
- THE GIRL IN THE MIRROR by Rose Carlyle
- THE BRIGHT LANDS by John Fram
- THE THURSDAY MURDER CLUB by Richard Osman

I've been seeing a lot of talk about the SA Cosby book and that Alex North book interests me as well.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 22, 2020, 05:50:13 pm
I have been collecting garden-related mysteries to read, and this one - totally by accident - is the book I picked up after finishing Edith Hamilton's 'TIL DIRT DO US PART.  I mention this because A DEATH IN THE FLOWER GARDEN is actually about a death at a market selling locally grown produce and flowers. The marketplace reminds me of the markets in Edith's books.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 24, 2020, 10:49:21 pm
This has been a binge-reading week. My granddaughters are going to swimming lessons (max 4 kids per class) in the afternoon, so while they are cooling off with their mom and dad, I'm catching the breeze and enjoying some good books!

Today's book is MYSTERY ON HIDDEN LANE by Clare Chase, an author who is new to me.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 24, 2020, 10:52:42 pm
What are you reading, this fine day?

What upcoming releases are you eagerly awaiting?

Are there any mystery authors you'd particularly like to see featured here?

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 25, 2020, 05:10:24 am
What are you reading, this fine day?

What upcoming releases are you eagerly awaiting?

Are there any mystery authors you'd particularly like to see featured here?

I'm not sure what I'm going to read today. I may finish an issue of Sports Illustrated, I may read some comics. As far as books go, if I get to reading a prose novel it will be HANDBOOK FOR HOMICIDE by Lorna Barrett. It's the latest in the Booktown Mystery series and it was published this week. I picked it up yesterday. I also ordered the new printing of Edith Maxwell's SPEAKING OF MURDER. It was originally published under the name Tace Baker but it's been spiffied up and republished under her own name. So you know I have to have it (even though I have copies of both Tace Baker books already).

Oh and I finished my advance Ambassador Program copy of the new Kyle Mills thriller TOTAL POWER which is the new Mitch Rapp book due out in September.

The books I'm most looking forward to are FROM BEER TO ETERNITY by Sherry Harris (Due out July 28th), THE ORPHAN'S GUILT by Archer Mayor (September), CANDY SLAIN MURDER by Maddie Day (September), BADGE HEAVY by Colin Conway and Frank Zafiro (September), MURDER AT AN IRISH CHRISTMAS by Carlene O'Connor (October) and COLD WIND by Paige Shelton (December)

I don't know which authors I'd like to see featured here but I'm sure whomever it may end up being I'll either be a fan or likely become one.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 25, 2020, 06:46:12 pm
I have a couple Paige Shelton books in my waiting-to-be-read pile. I picked up a couple used hardcover books yesterday - a REALLY good deal!

SECRET SISTERS by Jayne Ann Krentz - I'm a longtime fan, but I've missed a few books along the way

and an author who is new to me, Laura Joh Rowland. This isn't her first book but I was intrigued by the cover blurbs:

THE INCENSE GAME
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Hannah Adams on July 26, 2020, 12:42:33 am
Someone mentioned Emma Lathen - I think it was when sports mysteries were featured - and I found more in my boxes of old books. The one I just finished was calle Accounting for Murder, and the cover says the author is "America's Agatha Christie." It was first published in 1964. My copy was published in 1974.

I enjoyed this book a lot, but it is definitely dated. One thing kind of got on my nerves. They must have had people check manually for typos, because I found a bunch. There a lots of secretaries, all female, and the rare women in power tend to be overlooked.

I just started another one called Brewing Up a Storm - the cover of this one says "The Agatha Christie of Wall Street."  This one isn't all that old, it was published in 1998.

Both of these books have chapter titles. That's an old fashioned style I always liked.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 26, 2020, 06:23:05 am
I have a couple Paige Shelton books in my waiting-to-be-read pile. I picked up a couple used hardcover books yesterday - a REALLY good deal!

SECRET SISTERS by Jayne Ann Krentz - I'm a longtime fan, but I've missed a few books along the way

and an author who is new to me, Laura Joh Rowland. This isn't her first book but I was intrigued by the cover blurbs:

THE INCENSE GAME

I think I have a couple books by Laura Joh Rowland on my to buy list.

That Paige Shelton book is the 2nd in her new series. I reviewed the first one, THIN ICE, and loved it. Here's the review (https://www.mysteryscenemag.com/component/content/article/26-reviews/books/6713-thin-ice).

I also read her Scottish Bookshop series though I'm a couple books behind on that one right now.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 26, 2020, 06:23:56 am
Someone mentioned Emma Lathen - I think it was when sports mysteries were featured - and I found more in my boxes of old books. The one I just finished was calle Accounting for Murder, and the cover says the author is "America's Agatha Christie." It was first published in 1964. My copy was published in 1974.

I enjoyed this book a lot, but it is definitely dated. One thing kind of got on my nerves. They must have had people check manually for typos, because I found a bunch. There a lots of secretaries, all female, and the rare women in power tend to be overlooked.

I just started another one called Brewing Up a Storm - the cover of this one says "The Agatha Christie of Wall Street."  This one isn't all that old, it was published in 1998.

Both of these books have chapter titles. That's an old fashioned style I always liked.

Hannah, thanks for this info. I am amazed that this is an author I have never heard of until the books were mentioned on this forum.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 26, 2020, 09:59:30 pm
Hannah - You've got me looking for old mysteries now, too. Today I found one from 1994, so not all that old. It's by Mary Bowen Hall, and it's called EMMA CHIZZIT AND THE QUEEN ANNE KILLER. It's about a woman who clears out houses for a living. That reminded me of the old Lovejoy books by Jonathan Gash. My mom had all of those and I think I salvaged a few of hers. It might be fun to watch some old episodes of Lovejoy, too.

With all the fixer-upper-type shows on HGTV, I thought this might be a fun read. It kicks off with a pretty grim discovery, so it might be a little darker than today's cozy mysteries.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 31, 2020, 12:32:27 am
I just finished SHADOW OF A SPOUT by Amanda Cooper, a Teapot Collector mystery published in 2015. I liked it a lot and I just with my mom was still around so I could pass it on to her. She would have LOVED this book! I liked it a lot, too, and I'll keep my eye out for more books in this series. TEMPEST IN A TEAPOT was the first in this series.

From Wikipedia: "Amanda Cooper is a pseudonym for national bestselling author Donna Lea Simpson, who also writes the Vintage Kitchen and Merry Muffin Mystery series as Victoria Hamilton."

It was HOT today, got up to almost 100 degrees. Even with air conditioning, it was the kind of heat that makes you want to take a nap. After I finished SHADOW OF A SPOUT, I picked up five different books, read a couple pages of each but just couldn't focus. I've narrowed it down but still haven't picked The Next Book to Read yet. I hardly ever do this - I could have almost finished a book by now!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on July 31, 2020, 03:57:09 am
Becke,

It has been sweltering here the last few days but I've managed to soldier on with reading in fits and starts.

I haven't written the reviews yet but I've finished an advance copy of the Kyle Mills thriller TOTAL POWER (the upcoming new Mitch Rapp book) and the newly published Booktown Mystery HANDBOOK FOR HOMICIDE by Lorna Barrett.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on July 31, 2020, 11:13:32 pm
I like Lorna's books a lot but I don't have the new Booktown book yet. I'm halfway through a vintage Robert Barnard book, THE CASE OF THE MISSING BRONTE.

I just got book 2 in the Vampire Knitting Club mystery series, too.

My granddaughter turns 8 on Monday so I've been spending time reading to her (Boxcar Children) in addition to my own reading. And with her birthday coming up, we've had friends and relatives drop in to wish her a happy birthday - wearing masks, of course!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 05, 2020, 09:08:16 pm
I finished book 2 in Nancy Warren's Vampire Knitting Club series, called STITCHES AND WITCHES. While the series centers around a knitting shop, in book 2 there is a murder in the tea shop next door.

That put me in the mood for more tea shops, so I started reading Vicki Delaney's new release, TEA AND TREACHERY. It's worth the price of a hardcover for the beautiful cover art:

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51j%2BswqRlpL._SY445_QL70_ML2_.jpg)

I also picked up a copy of Carolyn Haines' HALLOWED BONES. I've enjoyed other books of hers so this one is probably up next for me.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 06, 2020, 03:42:31 am

That put me in the mood for more tea shops, so I started reading Vicki Delaney's new release, TEA AND TREACHERY. It's worth the price of a hardcover for the beautiful cover art:

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51j%2BswqRlpL._SY445_QL70_ML2_.jpg)

This book is on my list but I haven't picked it up yet.

I plan to get Hank Phillippi Ryan's new thriller tomorrow. And yesterday I finished reading FROM BEER TO ETERNITY, the first book in the new Chloe Jackson, Sea Glass Saloon series by Sherry Harris. Here's my Goodreads review! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3477449412)

(https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1579655074l/48714765.jpg)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 07, 2020, 04:57:27 pm
The cover makes me think of Death in Paradise, a British mystery I enjoy.

I forgot to mention I also read HALLOWED BONES by Carolyn Haines this week. It was addictive - I stayed up reading it until the sun was coming up! There are over 20 books in the series, so this is going to take awhile. I'll have to wait until the library reopens unless I find a treasure trove of Carolyn's books at the thrift shop. I've read a couple of her books from other series - they are probably on my keeper shelves, which unfortunately are multiple layers.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 08, 2020, 10:49:50 am


I haven't written the reviews yet but I've finished an advance copy of the Kyle Mills thriller TOTAL POWER (the upcoming new Mitch Rapp book) and the newly published Booktown Mystery HANDBOOK FOR HOMICIDE by Lorna Barrett.

Here's my brief write up for Lorna Barrett's Handbook for Homicide (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3463650157).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 09, 2020, 12:52:44 am


I haven't written the reviews yet but I've finished an advance copy of the Kyle Mills thriller TOTAL POWER (the upcoming new Mitch Rapp book) and the newly published Booktown Mystery HANDBOOK FOR HOMICIDE by Lorna Barrett.

Here's my brief write up for Lorna Barrett's Handbook for Homicide (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3463650157).

Thanks so much for sharing your review. I went to Barnes & Noble today and spent way too much (well, I had to get books for my granddaughters, too, didn't I?) so it's a good thing I read this when I got home. My wish list is ridiculously long even after a few book splurges recently. It will be a reality check when the library opens because if I start checking out all the books I want to read, I'll have to read them before the due date. Aaauughhh!

Soooo many books I want to read, and my to-be-read pile is pretty massive, including both old and new books.  Today's additions to the pile: Hank Phillippi Ryan's THE FIRST TO LIE, Jeanne M. Dams A DAGGER BEFORE ME, Ellery Adams' MURDER IN THE READING ROOM, Nancy Warren's 3rd book in the Vampire Knitting Club series - CROCHET AND CAULDRONS, and Ann Cleeves' THE LONG CALL.

Time for a READING BINGE!!!!!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 09, 2020, 08:22:35 am

Thanks so much for sharing your review. I went to Barnes & Noble today and spent way too much (well, I had to get books for my granddaughters, too, didn't I?) so it's a good thing I read this when I got home. My wish list is ridiculously long even after a few book splurges recently. It will be a reality check when the library opens because if I start checking out all the books I want to read, I'll have to read them before the due date. Aaauughhh!

Soooo many books I want to read, and my to-be-read pile is pretty massive, including both old and new books.  Today's additions to the pile: Hank Phillippi Ryan's THE FIRST TO LIE, Jeanne M. Dams A DAGGER BEFORE ME, Ellery Adams' MURDER IN THE READING ROOM, Nancy Warren's 3rd book in the Vampire Knitting Club series - CROCHET AND CAULDRONS, and Ann Cleeves' THE LONG CALL.

Time for a READING BINGE!!!!!

I got THE FIRST TO LIE from Hank Phillippi Ryan on Friday. I have to go back to the bookstore today because an author that was featured on the Jungle Red Writers blog today was interesting and her first book is in stock. So I'm going to pick that up.

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 14, 2020, 01:52:12 pm
FIRST TO LIE is my favorite of Hank's books so far, and I've read them all. This one is tricky. I haven't reviewed anything in ages but I'd like to review this one if I can just figure out a way to do it justice without giving anything away. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Meantime, I just started reading Con Lehane's MURDER AT THE 42ND STREET LIBRARY. I really liked the other book I read in this series, MURDER IN THE MANUSCRIPT ROOM. I think Jay first introduced me to this series. Still have one more to go!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 14, 2020, 04:58:07 pm
FIRST TO LIE is my favorite of Hank's books so far, and I've read them all. This one is tricky. I haven't reviewed anything in ages but I'd like to review this one if I can just figure out a way to do it justice without giving anything away. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Meantime, I just started reading Con Lehane's MURDER AT THE 42ND STREET LIBRARY. I really liked the other book I read in this series, MURDER IN THE MANUSCRIPT ROOM. I think Jay first introduced me to this series. Still have one more to go!

I might've mentioned the Con Lehane series but I only heard of it because I saw a review of one of the books in Mystery Scene's print edition I believe.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 14, 2020, 06:40:42 pm
FIRST TO LIE is my favorite of Hank's books so far, and I've read them all. This one is tricky. I haven't reviewed anything in ages but I'd like to review this one if I can just figure out a way to do it justice without giving anything away. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Meantime, I just started reading Con Lehane's MURDER AT THE 42ND STREET LIBRARY. I really liked the other book I read in this series, MURDER IN THE MANUSCRIPT ROOM. I think Jay first introduced me to this series. Still have one more to go!

I might've mentioned the Con Lehane series but I only heard of it because I saw a review of one of the books in Mystery Scene's print edition I believe.

I wish I could visit that library branch!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 16, 2020, 08:07:31 pm
I finished reading MURDER ON THE SILVER SCREEN which is the third book in the Movie Palace mystery series by Margaret Dumas.

I got it in the mail on Friday after learning that it had been published back in June.  I didn't think there would be a third book in the series because I'd heard that the publisher of the series had dropped nearly all of their authors a while back.

But while I haven't written a review of the book yet, I can tell you that it was fantastic. I've really enjoyed the series so far and this book was no exception to that. I can only hope there is more to come somehow because I really want to see where this story goes next.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 18, 2020, 07:06:23 pm
I finished reading MURDER ON THE SILVER SCREEN which is the third book in the Movie Palace mystery series by Margaret Dumas.

I got it in the mail on Friday after learning that it had been published back in June.  I didn't think there would be a third book in the series because I'd heard that the publisher of the series had dropped nearly all of their authors a while back.

But while I haven't written a review of the book yet, I can tell you that it was fantastic. I've really enjoyed the series so far and this book was no exception to that. I can only hope there is more to come somehow because I really want to see where this story goes next.

Both my wish list and my waiting-to-be-read pile are getting pretty scary. But no matter how many books I'm hoping to read soon, I can always squeeze in a couple more. This series definitely sounds like fun!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 19, 2020, 04:06:12 am

Both my wish list and my waiting-to-be-read pile are getting pretty scary. But no matter how many books I'm hoping to read soon, I can always squeeze in a couple more. This series definitely sounds like fun!

Becke,

It definitely is a fun series to read. And it is slightly out of my preferred reading zone due the inclusion of a particular character. But oddly enough, I have come to love that character as nearly my favorite one in the series.

Margaret Dumas has done the impossible in making me a huge fan of this series and that character.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 20, 2020, 12:34:46 am

Both my wish list and my waiting-to-be-read pile are getting pretty scary. But no matter how many books I'm hoping to read soon, I can always squeeze in a couple more. This series definitely sounds like fun!

Becke,

It definitely is a fun series to read. And it is slightly out of my preferred reading zone due the inclusion of a particular character. But oddly enough, I have come to love that character as nearly my favorite one in the series.

Margaret Dumas has done the impossible in making me a huge fan of this series and that character.

I'm really looking forward to reading this series now. Once I do, I'll have to check in with you to see if I can identify the character you mentioned.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 22, 2020, 02:00:23 am
I forgot to mention a couple of books I read in the past week. I'm eager to read more of Nancy Warren's VAMPIRE KNITTING CLUB mysteries. I liked the third one, CROCHET AND CAULDRONS, a lot. Sign up for Nancy's newsletter and you can download a prequel to this series here: https://nancywarren.us3.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=cbdfe67e2fc355b2308c7dfd2&id=aa0a55027d

I have my copy but haven't had a chance to read it yet. I also read an oldie by Connie Shelton, BALLOONS CAN BE MURDER. I especially enjoyed this one because it is set in New Mexico, moving between Albuquerque, Clovis and Santa Fe. The main part of the book centers around the Albuquerque Hot Air Balloon festival. https://balloonfiesta.com/

I'm currently reading Philip R. Craig's MURDER AT A VINEYARD MANSION. I'm about halfway through it - I'm enjoying it!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 22, 2020, 08:40:54 am
The book I'm currently reading has been a bit of a struggle. I loved the first book in the series, gave it a great review in Mystery Scene. But book 2 hasn't drawn me in quite the same. There's reasons for that which I'll go into when I write my Goodreads review after I finish reading it.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on August 22, 2020, 06:11:36 pm
I finished reading MURDER ON THE SILVER SCREEN which is the third book in the Movie Palace mystery series by Margaret Dumas.

I got it in the mail on Friday after learning that it had been published back in June.  I didn't think there would be a third book in the series because I'd heard that the publisher of the series had dropped nearly all of their authors a while back.

But while I haven't written a review of the book yet, I can tell you that it was fantastic. I've really enjoyed the series so far and this book was no exception to that. I can only hope there is more to come somehow because I really want to see where this story goes next.

Here's my review of MURDER ON THE SILVER SCREEN (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3498694289).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 24, 2020, 10:44:47 pm
I forgot to mention a couple of books I read in the past week. I'm eager to read more of Nancy Warren's VAMPIRE KNITTING CLUB mysteries. I liked the third one, CROCHET AND CAULDRONS, a lot. Sign up for Nancy's newsletter and you can download a prequel to this series here: https://nancywarren.us3.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=cbdfe67e2fc355b2308c7dfd2&id=aa0a55027d

I have my copy but haven't had a chance to read it yet. I also read an oldie by Connie Shelton, BALLOONS CAN BE MURDER. I especially enjoyed this one because it is set in New Mexico, moving between Albuquerque, Clovis and Santa Fe. The main part of the book centers around the Albuquerque Hot Air Balloon festival. https://balloonfiesta.com/

I'm currently reading Philip R. Craig's MURDER AT A VINEYARD MANSION. I'm about halfway through it - I'm enjoying it!

I did like the Philip R. Craig book and will keep an eye out for more books in his Vineyard series.

I also liked Con Lehane's MURDER AT THE 42ND STREET LIBRARY. It was darker than I expected and in some sections I had a little trouble keeping track of all the characters.

I need something lighter after this book, so I just started WHAT'S THE WORST THAT COULD HAPPEN?, a Dortmunder story. I'm a big fan of Westlake's books. I also love movies based on his books, like THE HOT ROCK and THE BANK JOB. I don't think either are on Netflix but I'm going to try YouTube. The film quality usually leaves something to be desired but I'll put up with it if it's the only way to see these old movies.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Hannah Adams on August 27, 2020, 08:30:47 pm
I can't keep up with you all. I just read an old book by Dorothy Cannell, published in 2000. It's called Bridesmaids Revisited. I know I've read books of hers before and I thought this would be kind of funny. It was a good mystery but not funny. The characters were interesting but it wasn't as good as I hoped.

Not sure what I'm going to read next. I have a gift card so I might read a new book for a change.

I enjoy seeing what you are reading even though I don't comment all the time. I like the reviews, too.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 29, 2020, 05:21:01 pm
My daughter lent me a book she just finished, THE LAST FLIGHT by Julie Clark. She gave it rave reviews so I dug in as soon as I finished the Donald Westlake book I'd been reading. I started in around lunchtime today and I'm more than halfway through it. I highly recommend this book: https://www.amazon.com/Last-Flight-Novel-Julie-Clark/dp/1728215722
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on August 30, 2020, 02:57:15 pm
My daughter lent me a book she just finished, THE LAST FLIGHT by Julie Clark. She gave it rave reviews so I dug in as soon as I finished the Donald Westlake book I'd been reading. I started in around lunchtime today and I'm more than halfway through it. I highly recommend this book: https://www.amazon.com/Last-Flight-Novel-Julie-Clark/dp/1728215722

Wow, this book was soooo good! The author saved up a couple of great twists for the last 50 pages or so. Awesome!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 06, 2020, 12:57:07 am
I just finished a Michael Gilbert book called ANYTHING FOR A QUIET LIFE, published in 1990. This is going to sound dumb, but when I first started reading it I wasn't sure if it was a single book or a collection of short stories. The same characters were featured but it seemed disconnected. Well, it really was short stories. My copy was apparently missing a sub-title shown in other editions. Here's what Wikipedia has to say about it:

"Anything for a Quiet Life and Other New Mystery Stories is a collection of nine short stories by the British writer Michael Gilbert published in the United Kingdom by Hodder and Stoughton in 1990 and in the United States by Carroll & Graf the same year. Gilbert, who was appointed CBE in 1980, was a founder-member of the British Crime Writers' Association. The Mystery Writers of America named him a Grand Master in 1988[1] and in 1990 he was presented Bouchercon's Lifetime Achievement Award.[2]

All nine stories had previously appeared in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine. All of them take place in a fictional English coastal town called Shackleton-on-Sea that is situated in the south of England not far from Brighton and Hove. In spite of Gilbert's usual low-key urbanity in his style, a number of them have an unexpected grimness about them. "Michael was an exceptionally fine storyteller, but he's hard to classify," said one of his British publishers after his death. "He's not a hard-boiled writer in the classic sense, but there is a hard edge to him, a feeling within his work that not all of society is rational, that virtue is not always rewarded.".[3]"
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 06, 2020, 01:25:09 am
I forgot to say that I liked the Michael Gilbert story collection a lot. In one story there was a character named Claire Easterbrook. Agatha Christie has a novel featuring a character named Mark Easterbrook. I wondered if that could have been a shout-out to her. Also, Gilbert has a couple of well known characters, Calder and Behrens, as well as a dog called Rasselas. In the book mentioned above, Mr. Calder appears in one of the stories without introduction. I really like those characters and hoped to find more of them. Jonas Pickett, the protagonist in the collection, is what he calls a "retreating solicitor" as opposed to a retiring one. He has given up his London practice and moved to Shackleton-on-Sea, looking forward to a quiet life.

I'm now in the mood for more of Michael Gilbert. I know I have some on my keeper shelves, so the next ones will probably be re-reads unless I strike it lucky at the thrift shop.

Look what I found online: https://www.mysteryscenemag.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2213:a-tribute-to-michael-gilbert-1912-2006&catid=38:profile&Itemid=191

In the meantime, the new Louise Penny has arrived but I decided to save it for the short getaway my husband and I are going on later in the week. So now I'm reading a book recommended by my fellow book-lover, Susan Stokes.

(http://www.abigailkeam.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/rsz_1_honeybee_cover-1.jpg)

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 09, 2020, 04:00:10 pm
I finished reading the Paige Shelton cozy mystery LOST BOOKS AND OLD BONES. You can check out my review HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3513109740)

The book also included a bonus story called A CHRISTMAS TARTAN which was originally published as an ebook novella. It is set before LOST BOOKS AND OLD BONES. It's listed as Scottish Bookshop Mystery Book 2.5 on Goodreads in case you want to read things in "order". You can read my review of the short story HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3536464253)

Meanwhile, I've received two new books for potential reviews for the magazine in the last couple of days. Going by the synopsis on the back of the advance copies both seem pretty interesting so I'm looking forward to checking them out.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 10, 2020, 12:48:15 am
I finished reading the Paige Shelton cozy mystery LOST BOOKS AND OLD BONES. You can check out my review HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3513109740)

The book also included a bonus story called A CHRISTMAS TARTAN which was originally published as an ebook novella. It is set before LOST BOOKS AND OLD BONES. It's listed as Scottish Bookshop Mystery Book 2.5 on Goodreads in case you want to read things in "order". You can read my review of the short story HERE! (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3536464253)

Meanwhile, I've received two new books for potential reviews for the magazine in the last couple of days. Going by the synopsis on the back of the advance copies both seem pretty interesting so I'm looking forward to checking them out.

Woo-hoo! I just got LOST BOOKS AND OLD BONES about a week ago! I'll go check out your review - I'm eager to read the new Louise Penny book but this one is at the top of my pile, too!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 16, 2020, 03:39:02 pm
I was in the mood for a quick read last night so I chose Nancy Warren's Vampire Knitting Club, volume 4. I like this series a lot. The vampires are a friendly lot, and in this book they are speed-knitting super-sized Christmas stockings for a holiday fair. The main mystery plot is interesting and it kept me reading until I reached the end, and even then I kept going through the excerpt for book 5.

(https://m.media-amazon.com/images/I/51xJrzIY3lL.jpg)

I have several books I'm eager to read but this time I want something a little longer - Louise Penny it is!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 20, 2020, 01:29:32 am
Today's book is by an author who is new to me. This is the first book in a series, but the author has written lots of books and this is only one of her series. I love the covers, and so far I'm enjoying the book, too!

https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/show/44033665-deadhead-and-buried

(https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1550788412l/44033665._SY475_.jpg)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 20, 2020, 06:55:55 am
I'm working on a book by debut author Elizabeth Breck. It's called ANONYMOUS and its about a female private investigator in San Diego. I'm going to hopefully be writing a review of it for the magazine.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 20, 2020, 05:28:33 pm
I'm working on a book by debut author Elizabeth Breck. It's called ANONYMOUS and its about a female private investigator in San Diego. I'm going to hopefully be writing a review of it for the magazine.

I'll be interested to read your review. I've heard good things about this - can't remember where I came across it, though. Probably from one of my friends who receives advanced copies.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 23, 2020, 12:35:13 am
Every so often, for a change of pace, I read something that is not a mystery. Today I received a book I had preordered probably a year ago, maybe more. It was worth the wait! If you've never read Allie Brosh, check out her two books. They are the perfect books for the crazy times we live in.

https://www.npr.org/2020/09/22/915685128/theres-no-convenient-structure-to-life-says-allie-brosh

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BSB2AE4/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i0

https://www.amazon.com/Untitled-AB-Be-Confirmed-Gallery/dp/1982156945/ref=tmm_hrd_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1600846478&sr=1-1
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 23, 2020, 03:57:20 am
When I don't read a mystery, I'm usually reading a Star Trek or Firefly novel.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 24, 2020, 04:46:57 pm
When I don't read a mystery, I'm usually reading a Star Trek or Firefly novel.

I've seen all the Star Trek movies but haven't read the novels. I didn't realize there were any Firefly novels. I'll have to check those out!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 24, 2020, 06:28:48 pm
When I don't read a mystery, I'm usually reading a Star Trek or Firefly novel.

I've seen all the Star Trek movies but haven't read the novels. I didn't realize there were any Firefly novels. I'll have to check those out!

The Star Trek novels set BEFORE the various series ended are hit and miss. Some are good, some are bad and a sense of continuity is lacking. But the books that are set AFTER the end of the various TV shows were much tighter controlled to keep with the established continuity and then expanded upon. They are generally much better stories.

As for the Firefly novels, they have published 3 so far with a fourth one coming out next month. I've only read the first one (which was really good) and I have the other two. They are set after the TV series but before the movie Serenity.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 25, 2020, 03:58:30 pm
I'm really enjoying this series - it includes vampires who are adept at knitting and crochet and Lucy, the owner of a yarn store who is unable to master knitting or crochet. Since inheriting the yarn store, Lucy has been deluged with discoveries. As if sharing her home with a nest of vampires wasn't enough, she has also learned that she comes from a long line of witches. Despite assurances that she will one day be a witch of great power, her first steps have only demonstrated a propensity for chaos.

In this volume, a production of Shakespeare's A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM becomes tangled up in well-intentioned matchmaking and an out-of-control love potion.

(https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1542954981l/42934694._SY475_.jpg)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 25, 2020, 04:03:40 pm
I just started this book - I'm making an effort to work my way through some of my recent book purchases, new and used.

https://www.amazon.com/Lost-Books-Old-Bones-Scottish-ebook/dp/B075JLD7L7/ref=as_li_ss_tl?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1514015891&sr=1-1&keywords=Lost+Books+and+Old+Bones&linkCode=sl1&tag=httpwwwmarkes-20&linkId=23fa4d5d488fa38b4de4bef331ceae7f

(https://m.media-amazon.com/images/I/51NGXyTh3EL.jpg)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 25, 2020, 04:43:26 pm
You should like that Paige Shelton book.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on September 30, 2020, 11:21:23 am
You should like that Paige Shelton book.

All the Burke and Hare references were gruesome but interesting. Very different from what I expected!

I just started book 2 in this series: SILENT BUD DEADLY

https://www.hyhanna.com/books/the-english-cottage-garden-mysteries/silent-bud-deadly/

(https://www.hyhanna.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/BUD-coverSMALL-1-e1550467652448.jpg)

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on September 30, 2020, 06:17:49 pm
I just picked up a couple of books at the bookstore today. I have three more coming in the mail. I'm about to start the 2nd book I got for review purposes though.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 02, 2020, 01:42:31 am
I just picked up a couple of books at the bookstore today. I have three more coming in the mail. I'm about to start the 2nd book I got for review purposes though.

Okay, I'll bite - what are the books you got today?

I've had this book in my to-be-read pile for months, finally read it today. It was moody and twisty and I finished it before dawn. It's a win/win! I bought this book after reading about it in Mystery Scene.

(https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1559581358l/42867786.jpg)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 02, 2020, 03:54:29 am
The two books that I picked up were THE ORPHAN'S GUILT by Archer Mayor and DEATH ON THE GREEN by Catie Murphy.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 04, 2020, 02:33:26 am
The two books that I picked up were THE ORPHAN'S GUILT by Archer Mayor and DEATH ON THE GREEN by Catie Murphy.

My brother in Vermont is a huge fan of Archer Mayor. He used to give my Dad his new releases as soon as they came out. I've read a lot of them but they were sometimes too grim for me.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 04, 2020, 11:34:23 am
The two books that I picked up were THE ORPHAN'S GUILT by Archer Mayor and DEATH ON THE GREEN by Catie Murphy.

My brother in Vermont is a huge fan of Archer Mayor. He used to give my Dad his new releases as soon as they came out. I've read a lot of them but they were sometimes too grim for me.

My dad read his books and before he died I bought St. Alban's Fire as a Christmas gift. But he never got a chance to read it. He willed the books to the neighbors across the street who were also from Vermont. But I refused to give them that particular book until I read it. I paid for it and I wasn't going to not have someone in my house read the darn thing! I read it and loved it and I've been reading him ever since. I've built up the library of the Archer Mayor books now through buying the new books as they came out and buying what I was missing over on eBay. I even got to meet the author once when he came to do a signing at my local library years ago.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 05, 2020, 07:08:27 pm
With all the authors you've met and signings you've been to, you must have quite a collection of autographed books. Do you keep a record of what you have?
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 05, 2020, 07:13:39 pm
Aaron Elkins has written a lot of mysteries, some with his wife. I only discovered his/their books a few years ago, and I like them a lot. I just finished DEAD MEN'S HEARTS, a Gideon Oliver mystery set in Egypt. It made me think of Agatha Christie's Egypt-set mysteries, and she is mentioned in the book. Today I started reading MURDER IN THE QUEEN'S ARMES, an earlier Gideon Oliver mysterty - it's set in England, where he and his wife are honeymooning. Their honeymoon is interrupted by murder and many calls on "the Skeleton Detective," a nickname Gideon loathes but can't shake.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 06, 2020, 03:55:09 am
With all the authors you've met and signings you've been to, you must have quite a collection of autographed books. Do you keep a record of what you have?

I don't have a written record of the books I have that have been signed by the author. But I do know which books they are. Call it a mental checklist.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 06, 2020, 06:36:32 pm
With all the authors you've met and signings you've been to, you must have quite a collection of autographed books. Do you keep a record of what you have?

I don't have a written record of the books I have that have been signed by the author. But I do know which books they are. Call it a mental checklist.

I keep planning to computerize my library and my books-read list. I made a list on Barnes & Noble, which I haven't updated in at least 5 years, and a list I spent AGES on, which simply vanished when Amazon bought Shelfari. :-(

Anyway, I finished Aaron Elkins' MURDER IN THE QUEEN'S ARMES and I liked it a lot. I was tempted to read another Aaron Elkins book (I have several in my waiting-to-be-read pile), but instead I picked up an early book by Leeann Sweeny called A WEDDING TO DIE FOR. I've read some of her recent books and liked them, so I thought I'd go back in time. This book was written in 2005:
http://www.leannsweeney.com/a-wedding-to-die-for/  I'm enjoying it so far!

http://www.leannsweeney.com/a-wedding-to-die-for/
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 10, 2020, 08:58:03 pm
I finished the Maddie Day mystery CANDY SLAIN MURDER today. I had started it yesterday and made sure to finish it today because I had a good day.

See, Maddie (AKA the great Edith Maxwell) was at the Barnes and Noble in Hyannis, MA today. She told me in advance she was going to be there so I drove down and after she signed the store's stock of her books, she took the time to sign the books I brought to have signed.

We were both properly masked and distanced of course, but it was great to see her and finish off my collection (until her next book anyway) of signed copies of her work.

She posted about it on her personal FB page today and made mention of the fact I write for the magazine.

These are the two pics she posted:

(https://scontent-bos3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/120999472_10157807637748565_8892318629696660573_n.jpg?_nc_cat=103&_nc_sid=730e14&_nc_ohc=_U6V9zBEEiEAX_yXMgW&_nc_ht=scontent-bos3-1.xx&oh=f1cb252e8cd00be3da52f20a6acad5b0&oe=5FA80703)

(https://scontent-bos3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/120948122_10157807637788565_281282921877918620_n.jpg?_nc_cat=109&_nc_sid=730e14&_nc_ohc=NbzEguRr5-QAX_vODRa&_nc_ht=scontent-bos3-1.xx&oh=3d5479a3c298c34c195e766ff98b8fe8&oe=5FA8BD65)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 10, 2020, 09:57:56 pm
What fun! No sooner did I complete part of my Edith collection (I still need to read her Quaker midwife series) than she comes out with a new book! I haven't been to B&N in at least a month - I don't think our local branch is doing any signings yet. A lot of stores in Eugene are still closed.

I just started THE TRUTH SLEUTH by Jacqueline Seewald. I've known her online for years but have never met her in person.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 11, 2020, 06:25:03 am
What fun! No sooner did I complete part of my Edith collection (I still need to read her Quaker midwife series) than she comes out with a new book! I haven't been to B&N in at least a month - I don't think our local branch is doing any signings yet. A lot of stores in Eugene are still closed.

I just started THE TRUTH SLEUTH by Jacqueline Seewald. I've known her online for years but have never met her in person.

Becke, it wasn't an official signing event or anything. They aren't doing anything like that. She was down on the Cape and her publisher arranged for her to go to the store and sign their stock. Given that one of her series is set on the Cape, signed copies of the books in that series in particular makes sense. This was a totally unofficial thing and Edith was kind enough to inform me that she'd be there since she knew I'd love to have my books signed. As you can see by the pic of me, we even made sure to sign outside of the store rather than inside.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 13, 2020, 02:05:02 am
What fun! No sooner did I complete part of my Edith collection (I still need to read her Quaker midwife series) than she comes out with a new book! I haven't been to B&N in at least a month - I don't think our local branch is doing any signings yet. A lot of stores in Eugene are still closed.

I just started THE TRUTH SLEUTH by Jacqueline Seewald. I've known her online for years but have never met her in person.

Becke, it wasn't an official signing event or anything. They aren't doing anything like that. She was down on the Cape and her publisher arranged for her to go to the store and sign their stock. Given that one of her series is set on the Cape, signed copies of the books in that series in particular makes sense. This was a totally unofficial thing and Edith was kind enough to inform me that she'd be there since she knew I'd love to have my books signed. As you can see by the pic of me, we even made sure to sign outside of the store rather than inside.

Wow, that makes it even more special - like your own personal signing! I bet that was fun for both you AND Edith!

I forgot to mention a book I finished reading a few days ago. It's a short story collection I started reading months ago. I set it aside to read a new release and it got buried in my to-be-read pile. It's called FEN COUNTRY by Edmund Crispin. It's a fun read from a Golden Age author.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 16, 2020, 03:54:20 am
I finished reading Vicki Delany's DYING IN A WINTER WONDERLAND yesterday. Here's my Goodreads review (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3594424425).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 16, 2020, 03:28:14 pm
I finished reading Vicki Delany's DYING IN A WINTER WONDERLAND yesterday. Here's my Goodreads review (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3594424425).

Thanks, I'll go read your review in just a second. I'm in zombie mode today after staying up until 5:30 a.m. to finish reading A DECLINE IN PROPHETS by Sulari Gentill. It was very different but I liked it a lot. Now I have to find more of her books and brace myself for more sleepless nights.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 16, 2020, 04:20:21 pm
I finished reading Vicki Delany's DYING IN A WINTER WONDERLAND yesterday. Here's my Goodreads review (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3594424425).

It's funny - you note that your issue with one aspect of the story hasn't kept you from enjoying the story as a whole. I've had that happen before, too, especially in cozy mysteries. Without listing specific titles, I can think of books where the main character feels responsible for one or more of the deaths, and that sense of guilt acts as a spine-ectomy.

I tend to like pushy, obnoxious characters when they get their come-uppance, but it drives me crazy when this type of character isn't confronted or in some way made to see how horrible their behavior is.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 16, 2020, 04:54:22 pm
Becke, I just don't understand why it is that over the course of multiple books a character can find all these murderers, survive each attempt on their lives and yet can't stand up to some minor character whose primary reason for existing seems to be as a non-lethal annoyance.

But as I said in my review, it might just be my problem because I'm a stubborn SOB who won't do something I don't want to do.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 16, 2020, 10:42:31 pm
Becke, I just don't understand why it is that over the course of multiple books a character can find all these murderers, survive each attempt on their lives and yet can't stand up to some minor character whose primary reason for existing seems to be as a non-lethal annoyance.

But as I said in my review, it might just be my problem because I'm a stubborn SOB who won't do something I don't want to do.

My parents worked hard to get my temper under control when I was a kid, and now it is so tightly under wraps it's unusual for me to really let it go. In my real life, I suffer from "pleaser" disease, and I constantly have to work to hold my ground. I'm stubborn as all get out, and I can stand up for my kids and grandkids without fail, but I'm not fond of confrontation for the sake of confrontation. This can lead to a battle of will-or-wimp. When I'm writing (haven't done much lately - too busy reading), I have to work to keep my characters strong and independent.

One reason I'm a big fan of Agatha Christie's Miss Marple is that people see a white-haired old lady and they don't expect anything from her. I get such a kick out of it when she picks up on all the important details others overlook. Now that I'm a grandmother, I appreciate her even more.

Thanks for elaborating on your reasons for being frustrated with the character's response to a "non-lethal annoyance." Is this person a relation, or someone who has power over the character, like an employer? I'll probably read these books and find out for myself.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 17, 2020, 10:49:00 am
Becke, I just don't understand why it is that over the course of multiple books a character can find all these murderers, survive each attempt on their lives and yet can't stand up to some minor character whose primary reason for existing seems to be as a non-lethal annoyance.

But as I said in my review, it might just be my problem because I'm a stubborn SOB who won't do something I don't want to do.

My parents worked hard to get my temper under control when I was a kid, and now it is so tightly under wraps it's unusual for me to really let it go. In my real life, I suffer from "pleaser" disease, and I constantly have to work to hold my ground. I'm stubborn as all get out, and I can stand up for my kids and grandkids without fail, but I'm not fond of confrontation for the sake of confrontation. This can lead to a battle of will-or-wimp. When I'm writing (haven't done much lately - too busy reading), I have to work to keep my characters strong and independent.

One reason I'm a big fan of Agatha Christie's Miss Marple is that people see a white-haired old lady and they don't expect anything from her. I get such a kick out of it when she picks up on all the important details others overlook. Now that I'm a grandmother, I appreciate her even more.

Thanks for elaborating on your reasons for being frustrated with the character's response to a "non-lethal annoyance." Is this person a relation, or someone who has power over the character, like an employer? I'll probably read these books and find out for myself.

In this particular book, the annoyances are doubled. There's the employee of the main character and then there is an acquaintance (not even really a friend) that the main character gets roped into helping with her wedding. In fact, the usual main antagonist is actually not around much for this story and in the few scenes they are in, the two seem to reach a kind of truce. Which is a good thing because it made no sense for the two to have such open animosity towards each other.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 18, 2020, 12:18:03 am
I'm about halfway through an oldie-but-goodie, Doris Miles Disney's THAT WHICH IS CROOKED. I found a New York Times review from 1948, but it isn't free unless you are a subscriber: https://www.nytimes.com/1948/05/09/archives/that-which-is-crookedby-doris-miles-disney-190-pp-new-york-crime.html

The protagonist of the story is the youngest, smallest and weakest in a family predominantly made up of strapping, handsome Scottish males. Over the years, this Casper Milquetoast character evens his odds against his overwhelming brothers by selective elimination. I'm curious to see how this turns out, because so far revenge has been anything but sweet.

It's both interesting and frustrating to look back at a time when society had such strict requirements for men and for women in their dress and their behavior.

As I mentioned, I'm only about halfway through the book, but I was surprised how little impact the outside world - and a World War - have impacted the family at the core of the story and the town they inhabit.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 18, 2020, 05:49:14 am
I just picked up the first three books in the Sloan Krause mystery series by Ellie Alexander. I started DEATH ON TAP last night and got about 1/3 of the way through before putting the book down as I was getting tired. I liked what I read, it was just a long day for me is all.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 18, 2020, 04:01:23 pm
I just picked up the first three books in the Sloan Krause mystery series by Ellie Alexander. I started DEATH ON TAP last night and got about 1/3 of the way through before putting the book down as I was getting tired. I liked what I read, it was just a long day for me is all.

I'm not familiar with this series. Looking forward to your thoughts on it.

I finished the Doris Miles Disney book last night and started right in on the next book in the Vampire Knitting Club series. This one jumps right in with murder and mysteries. The neighborhood coven is involved, too.

https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/show/45177106-fair-isle-and-fortunes

(https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1555711376l/45177106._SY475_.jpg)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 26, 2020, 04:04:02 pm
I finished reading Archer Mayor's The Orphan's Guilt last night.

Because there aren't any signings going on, Mayor posted a message on his Facebook page where you could contact his website and they'd send out a bookplate with his signature that you could add to the latest book. I did so and in about 2 days I had it.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 27, 2020, 12:57:16 am
I finished reading Archer Mayor's The Orphan's Guilt last night.

Because there aren't any signings going on, Mayor posted a message on his Facebook page where you could contact his website and they'd send out a bookplate with his signature that you could add to the latest book. I did so and in about 2 days I had it.

I love it when authors do that. Even before coronavirus, I know some authors who would send bookmarks and signed bookplates for people who couldn't make it to their book signings. Suzanne Brockmann and Brenda Novak are two authors I can think of who used to do that.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 31, 2020, 12:42:34 am
I picked up a book from 1996 - the title is similar to an Agatha Christie title, which is probably what drew me to it. Unfortunately, I'm not a huge fan so far. The author isn't familiar to me but she has written a LOT of books. Maybe I'd like her other books better.

Also, we did a quick run to Barnes & Noble tonight - I hoped to find something by Sulari Gentill but they didn't have a single one. I did find a new book by Tess Gerritsen, though - that's next up for me. It's a ghost story, which should be perfect for Halloween!

(https://www.tessgerritsen.com/wp-content/files/3DBook-1500x1500.png)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 31, 2020, 12:46:11 am
I was tempted by this non-fiction memoir. I added it to my humongous wish list:

https://www.amazon.com/My-Life-as-Villainess-Essays/dp/0062997335

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on October 31, 2020, 06:35:47 pm
Who was the author of the book from 1996?

I read Tess Gerrittsen for a few years back when she first started having books come out. But I haven't read any of her books in a good long while.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on October 31, 2020, 09:42:11 pm
Who was the author of the book from 1996?

Susan Rogers Cooper.

I read Tess Gerrittsen for a few years back when she first started having books come out. But I haven't read any of her books in a good long while.

THE SILENT GIRL is a particular favorite of mine.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on November 01, 2020, 05:23:32 am
Susan Rogers Cooper is a new name to me.

Right now, I'm working on a Murder, She Wrote mystery by Jon Land.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on November 01, 2020, 04:56:25 pm
Susan Rogers Cooper is a new name to me.

Right now, I'm working on a Murder, She Wrote mystery by Jon Land.

She was a new name to me, too. Okay, about halfway through the book (HICKORY DICKORY STALK) I was ready to give up on it. But I plowed through to the end and the second half, while I didn't love it, was more satisfying than the first half. The ending was better than I expected. I'm not going to run out and look for more of her books, but I'm glad I made it to the end of this one.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on November 08, 2020, 09:32:51 am
I finished reading THE PINT OF NO RETURN today. It's the 2nd book in Ellie Alexander's Sloane Krause mystery series. And I really did enjoy it. You can check out my full thoughts on this one via my Goodreads review (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3629243946).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on November 08, 2020, 01:16:44 pm
I finished reading THE PINT OF NO RETURN today. It's the 2nd book in Ellie Alexander's Sloane Krause mystery series. And I really did enjoy it. You can check out my full thoughts on this one via my Goodreads review (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3629243946).

Okay, I'm intrigued! I'm not a big beer drinker, but I lived in Cincinnati for almost 20 years and went to Oktoberfest in Covington, KY several times. Thanks for the recommendation - I'll check these out.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on November 11, 2020, 05:39:29 pm
I read BEYOND A REASONABLE STOUT by Ellie Alexander. It's the third book in the Sloan Krause series. I loved the book and here's my Goodreads.com review (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3635546899).

The fourth book in the series just came out in hardcover yesterday. It's called WITHOUT A BREW. I want to read it but I'm probably going to have to wait until it comes out in paperback.

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: KiwiCraig on November 12, 2020, 03:55:06 pm
Had a great week of reading thusfar - started with CONSOLATION, the new one from Garry Disher, on the weekend. Then read THE SURVIVORS by Jane Harper (out in USA early 2021) then today and yesterday read STILL LIFE by Val McDermid
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on November 12, 2020, 04:22:31 pm
Had a great week of reading thusfar - started with CONSOLATION, the new one from Garry Disher, on the weekend. Then read THE SURVIVORS by Jane Harper (out in USA early 2021) then today and yesterday read STILL LIFE by Val McDermid

Craig, is that new Jane Harper book part of her series or a standalone?
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on November 14, 2020, 05:23:13 pm
Had a great week of reading thusfar - started with CONSOLATION, the new one from Garry Disher, on the weekend. Then read THE SURVIVORS by Jane Harper (out in USA early 2021) then today and yesterday read STILL LIFE by Val McDermid

Thanks for sharing, Kiwi! Garry Disher is new to me but I've read books by Jane Harper and Val McDermid. I haven't read the books you mentioned, though.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on November 25, 2020, 02:01:34 am
I did a kind of eeny-meeny-miney-mo and ended up reading (actually, re-reading) John Sherwood's THE HANGING GARDEN. I'm not very far into it but it's a fast read. So many books I want to get to!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on November 29, 2020, 06:57:51 pm
I finished reading the new Michael Connelly book The Law Of Innocence. I haven't written my Goodreads review but I will say that I liked the book. However, there's a part of the plot tying it into the real world that kind of draws you out of the legal thriller aspect of the story.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on November 29, 2020, 11:11:56 pm
I'm currently working on a re-read of the Eva Gates mystery Reading Up A Storm. It's the third book in her Lighthouse Library series.

I don't typically get to do a lot of re-reading but I joined the mystery book club at my local library and this is the book of the month. I'm about 2/3 of the way through it and I still like it. I wasn't overly fond of the first two books in the series but this book is where I felt the main character FINALLY stopped being such a doormat.

I've got the fourth book in the series but haven't gotten around to reading that one yet.

I'm pretty sure READING UP A STORM is in my TBR pile. Right now, I'm thinking of warmer temperatures - I just started the fourth book in Robert Thorogood's Death in Paradise series. It's called MURDER IN THE CARIBBEAN - I love the TV series, and I've enjoyed all the books I've read in this series. (Which is all of them...)

https://www.goodreads.com/series/163560-death-in-paradise
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on November 30, 2020, 04:29:38 pm
Sounds interesting, I will add it to my list to check out the first book to see if I like it.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 01, 2020, 01:54:48 am
Sounds interesting, I will add it to my list to check out the first book to see if I like it.

I remember thinking the first book was very close to the series, which is not surprising since the author came up with the concept for the show and I think he wrote some of the scripts.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Hannah Adams on December 11, 2020, 12:23:04 am
I'm in the mood for hot chocolate and Christmas mysteries. I'm reading an old short story collection called Murder for Christmas, Volume 2. I like it because the stories are by a lot of authors from the old days. I've read books by a few of these authors, like Ngaio Marsh. Dorothy L. Sayers, Mary Roberts Rinehart and Nero Wolfe. I liked their stories. Some of the others were dry or dated or both, but overall I like this book.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 11, 2020, 06:42:22 am
I'm currently reading an advance copy of the new C.J. Box book DARK SKY. It's due out in March.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Hannah Adams on December 12, 2020, 03:06:34 am
I'm currently reading an advance copy of the new C.J. Box book DARK SKY. It's due out in March.

You are lucky to get advance copies. If you don't mind me asking, how did you come to be a book reviewer?
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 12, 2020, 08:55:30 pm
I'm currently reading an advance copy of the new C.J. Box book DARK SKY. It's due out in March.

You are lucky to get advance copies. If you don't mind me asking, how did you come to be a book reviewer?

A few years back I was writing for a website called Poptopia. It's long gone now but it was co-owned by a friend of mine and I wrote a variety of articles for the site dealing with music and TV.

One year, I wrote an article on my ten favorite mysteries and thrillers. When the article was posted, a PR guy for Atria Books saw the article and got in touch with me. He asked if I would be interested in reviewing a book he had available. It was the book I AM PILGRIM by Terry Hayes. Outside of book reports in school, I'd never done a "real" book review. But I said yes and got the book in the mail. I read it, loved it and after 2 1/2 weeks trying to craft a review that I was comfortable posting, the article went up. The PR guy couldn't believe it was the first time I'd done a review. He would send me a new book every once in a while.

Then the site was sold off/shut down and I had a review that didn't get the chance to go up before it did. But when I sent him the file of the review of Thomas Mullen's DARKTOWN, he got back to me and said it was so good that I should consider sending it to Mystery Scene. I hemmed and hawed a bit but sent it to the magazine. (I believe I sent it to Kate Stine). A couple weeks or so went by and then I had an email that said they liked the review but already had a review for the book. I was offered a tryout book to review and if it was accepted, I'd get added to the review crew for future books.

The first book that I reviewed for the magazine was Rob McCarthy's THE HOLLOW MEN. You can read that review HERE! (https://mysteryscenemag.com/26-reviews/books/5536-the-hollow-men)

And I've been reviewing ever since. I love it and hope to continue for many years to come.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 13, 2020, 12:12:59 am
Wow, thanks so much for sharing this with us! Sounds like it was a combination of your writing talent plus a bit of serendipity that set you on this path. Must be fun to have a career that "requires" lots of reading. :-)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 13, 2020, 12:16:22 am
I'm reading the second book in Tracy Clark's Chicago Mystery series, BORROWED TIME. I like the characters and it's fun to travel familiar streets. Makes me a little homesick for Hyde Park!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 13, 2020, 08:28:50 am
Wow, thanks so much for sharing this with us! Sounds like it was a combination of your writing talent plus a bit of serendipity that set you on this path. Must be fun to have a career that "requires" lots of reading. :-)

While I might have some small talent with stringing words together, let's not forget I have an editor (Teri Duerr) who makes sure the words are concise and in the right order. She Rocks!

And there's a whole heaping helping of luck involved with how I got to be part of the Review Crew.

But getting the ability to say that I'm a paid professional writer, even tongue-in-cheek, is a nice thing.

The one regret I have is that my mom died before that first review was printed so she never got to see the magazine with my review printed in it. She would've loved it. She was my editor on all the Christmas letters that I would write for my niece when she was a kid.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 13, 2020, 09:29:02 pm
Wow, thanks so much for sharing this with us! Sounds like it was a combination of your writing talent plus a bit of serendipity that set you on this path. Must be fun to have a career that "requires" lots of reading. :-)

While I might have some small talent with stringing words together, let's not forget I have an editor (Teri Duerr) who makes sure the words are concise and in the right order. She Rocks!

And there's a whole heaping helping of luck involved with how I got to be part of the Review Crew.

But getting the ability to say that I'm a paid professional writer, even tongue-in-cheek, is a nice thing.

The one regret I have is that my mom died before that first review was printed so she never got to see the magazine with my review printed in it. She would've loved it. She was my editor on all the Christmas letters that I would write for my niece when she was a kid.

Aw, I'm sad your mom didn't get to see your reviews published. I'm sure she would have been very proud of you!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 15, 2020, 04:19:05 pm
Forgot to mention that I finished Sharon Fiffer's HOLLYWOOD STUFF - A Jane Wheel Mystery. She has written at least four other books in this series. I'll check them out.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 15, 2020, 04:37:20 pm
I finished reading A TINE TO LIVE, A TINE TO DIE. It's the first book in Edith Maxwell's Local Foods Mystery series. You can check out what I thought of it over on Goodreads.com (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3684668516).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 15, 2020, 05:56:20 pm
I read that and liked it. I think I've all of hers except the Quaker midwife series now.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 16, 2020, 04:00:03 am
I read that and liked it. I think I've all of hers except the Quaker midwife series now.

Have you got her two Lauren Rousseau books? They were originally published under the name Tace Baker but this past summer they were republished (with new editing and cover art under Edith's own name. I have both versions.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 17, 2020, 12:36:56 am
I read that and liked it. I think I've all of hers except the Quaker midwife series now.

Have you got her two Lauren Rousseau books? They were originally published under the name Tace Baker but this past summer they were republished (with new editing and cover art under Edith's own name. I have both versions.

I knew I was forgetting something. No, I haven't read these, and I want to. So the new releases are available now? I'll tell my husband to add them to my "wish list."
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 17, 2020, 04:29:27 am

I knew I was forgetting something. No, I haven't read these, and I want to. So the new releases are available now? I'll tell my husband to add them to my "wish list."

Yes they are available under the Edith Maxwell name. The Tace Baker versions are out of print, I found my copies of those on eBay.

Edith told me to read the new versions instead of the older ones, they've been newly edited and I believe updated a bit. They came out in July and August.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 20, 2020, 07:55:34 am
I finished reading an advance copy of the new C.J. Box book that's due out in March. It is called Dark Sky and it is from his Joe Pickett series. I haven't submitted my review of it yet though so I can't say much other than I liked it.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 21, 2020, 10:27:28 pm
I've been on a reading binge. Having trouble finding the Christmas spirit right now - I didn't put up a tree, but I did finally put up some Christmas decorations. In the meantime, I'm working on my waiting-to-be-read pile. I just finish book 8 in Nancy Warren's Vampire Knitting Club mysteries - unusual to find a vampire series that is cozyish. I like this one a lot.

I also just read Tess Gerritsen's THE SHAPE OF NIGHT. It's a ghost story and a mystery with a touch of FIFTY SHADES OF GREY. I've read Gerritsen's Rizzoli and Isles books, and none of them prepared me for this. It's dark and parts of it are scary. I love the descriptions of the heroine's hefty Maine Coon cat (29 pounds). When she moves in to the summer rental, she describes opening his cat carrier as "releasing the kraken." The erotic scenes weren't especially graphic, just unexpected.

I've read a couple books this year that featured ghosts. I've never come across any kind of apparition but I'd say I'm open to the possibility of ghosts. Certainly I've visited places that gave me the creeps. In particular, this one: https://hockinghills.com/members/The_Ridges.html

Have any of you had close encounters of the ghostly kind?
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 22, 2020, 03:52:14 am
I haven't had any ghostly encounters, at least that I know of.

Oh, and on Sunday I finished reading ROBERT B. PARKER'S ANGEL EYES by Ace Atkins.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 23, 2020, 01:51:55 am
I haven't had any ghostly encounters, at least that I know of.

Oh, and on Sunday I finished reading ROBERT B. PARKER'S ANGEL EYES by Ace Atkins.

I've read a couple of the Ace Atkins Robert B. Parker books, and was surprised to find that I liked them a lot. I've read all of Robert B. Parker's originals and loved them. I liked the SPENCER TV show, too.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 23, 2020, 03:43:18 am
I've read a couple of the Ace Atkins Robert B. Parker books, and was surprised to find that I liked them a lot. I've read all of Robert B. Parker's originals and loved them. I liked the SPENCER TV show, too.

The Spenser TV show was a favorite of mine. I have all three seasons on DVD. Robert B. Parker wasn't really a fan of it, but I think he was wrong in this particular case.

And I used to be very against continuing a series after an author dies but between Kyle Mills taking over the Mitch Rapp series after Vince Flynn's death and Ace Atkins taking over the Spenser series I've had a small change of opinion. The first two books Atkins wrote in the Spenser series made my Top 10 list in those particular years..

Meanwhile, I'm currently trying to read an advance copy of the upcoming P.J. Tracy book DEEP INTO THE DARK.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 25, 2020, 01:18:31 am
I read P.J. Tracy's MONKEEWRENCH when it first came out, and I loved it. I've read every book in the series. I didn't like them all as well as I liked the first one, but I liked them enough to keep coming back for more. I'm sure I'll pick up the new book eventually, too. (I say eventually because I'm barely making a dent in my to-be-read pile, despite my concerted effort to read the books I already own.

I hope you all find time to read over the holidays. Stay safe!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 27, 2020, 05:33:55 pm
My plan to dig in and read a lot of books over the holidays isn't notably making tracks. I've been reading Ann Purser's THE HANGMAN'S ROW INQUIRY for several days. I like the book but it's very rowdy around here at the moment and it's hard to focus. Still, I'm almost finished. Wish me luck!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on December 27, 2020, 08:37:30 pm
I've been trying to get into reading an advance copy of the new P.J. Tracy book but I'm not making much headway. It's not rowdy here but I'm finding myself either terribly distracted by other things I need to do and/or terribly disinterested in the book itself. I'm making more of a push tomorrow but if I can't make some progress towards actually being interested in the story, I'm going to give up on it.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on December 31, 2020, 02:22:59 pm
It's hard to finish a book that isn't holding your interest. Sometimes I'm just not in the mood for a particular book, but then if I pick it up later, I feel differently about it. Right now I have a wealth of books I want to read and I keep starting different ones, and then jumping to another. I'm enjoying all of them but it's taking me longer than usual to actually finish a book right now.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 03, 2021, 08:09:58 pm
It took me a good long while, too long really, but I finished DEEP INTO THE DARK by P.J. Tracy today. Hopefully I can write a review and submit it to the magazine.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 04, 2021, 08:41:08 am
I'm looking forward to reading your review!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 04, 2021, 03:40:04 pm
I'm looking forward to reading your review!

If only I can figure out how to write it. I submitted one review today and I'll work on that one tomorrow. Oh, and I've started reading the third of four books I got advance copies of. It's Donna Leon's Transient Desires. It should prove interesting because I've never read her books before.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 11, 2021, 02:16:27 am
I'm looking forward to reading your review!

If only I can figure out how to write it. I submitted one review today and I'll work on that one tomorrow. Oh, and I've started reading the third of four books I got advance copies of. It's Donna Leon's Transient Desires. It should prove interesting because I've never read her books before.

I have a couple of her books in my waiting-to-be-read pile. I remember Kate Stine recommended them and I do plan to read them. I'm easily distracted these days, unfortunately.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 11, 2021, 02:18:27 am
I finished MURDER AT HONEYCHURCH HALL by Hannah Dennison today. There are several other books in this series. I'll probably read more of them, if only I can find them in stores or - I live in hope! - at the library, when it finally opens again.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 11, 2021, 02:21:01 am
I'm reading BATS IN THE BELFRY by E.C.R. Lorac. I wish I had an edition with this cool cover, but mine is much more prosaic.

(https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1332197631l/13553342.jpg)
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 11, 2021, 03:50:24 am
I'm still trying to finish the Donna Leon book. I've got about 50 pages to go.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 16, 2021, 03:04:19 pm
PRETTY AS A PICTURE by Elizabeth Little

I thought I knew what I was going to read next, but then my daughter gave me a book and said, "Read this!" I'm about a third of the way into it, and I'm not sure how I feel about it. Nothing much has happened yet, but there are intimations of things to come. The main character is definitely quirky.

Here's a review I found: https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/elizabeth-little/pretty-as-a-picture/
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 17, 2021, 10:32:55 am
I finished the James Grippando legal thriller TWENTY last night. I'll be submitting a review of the book to the magazine later today.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 18, 2021, 04:19:07 pm
I'll look forward to reading your review! It's been cold and kind of gloomy the last few days, so I've done quite a bit of reading. I finished PRETTY AS A PICTURE by Elizabeth Little in less than 24 hours, then went on to read SPEAK NOW by Margaret Dumas the following day. And yesterday I was back to John Dunning - I finished THE HOLLAND SUGGESTIONS this morning. I enjoyed all of those books.

I'm not sure what today's book will be. I have another Margaret Dumas and another John Dunning, plus Matthew Quirk's NIGHT AGENT. My daughter gave me another book she just read - GOODNIGHT BEAUTIFUL by Aimee Molloy. I just realized I have another Ruth Ware book buried in that pile, too - THE TURN OF THE KEY. I've read all of her others and liked them, so odds are I'll like this one, too.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 19, 2021, 03:51:15 am
You will love the Matthew Quirk book.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 19, 2021, 02:25:10 pm
You will love the Matthew Quirk book.

That might be my next one. I started reading Robert Barnard's A HOVERING OF VULTURES last night. Unfortunately, my husband put ona movie he'd been wanting to see that I REALLY did NOT want to watch. Unfortunately, it's a big screen and he likes the volume up loud, so I got sucked into the movie in spite of myself. So frustrating! I don't like it when a whole day goes by and I haven't read a book. And SNOWPIERCER is really not my kind of movie. Oh well.

I will still read this one soon: https://www.publishersweekly.com/978-0-684-19625-1

So NIGHT AGENT wins the draw for today! Thanks!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 19, 2021, 03:25:59 pm
I'm just starting COLD WIND by Paige Shelton. I meant to start it yesterday but I got a headache and I decided to pass on reading at all last night.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 19, 2021, 09:48:18 pm
I'm just starting COLD WIND by Paige Shelton. I meant to start it yesterday but I got a headache and I decided to pass on reading at all last night.

Was there a full moon last night? A blue moon? That might have been the only night in about a year that neither one of us read a book!!

BTW, I'm flying through THE NIGHT AGENT. You were right - sooo good!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 20, 2021, 03:49:31 am
I'm glad you are liking THE NIGHT AGENT.

And yeah, it was weird that I did no reading the other night.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 20, 2021, 01:59:59 pm
I'm glad you are liking THE NIGHT AGENT.

And yeah, it was weird that I did no reading the other night.

That book should come with a warning. I finished it at 3:30 a.m. WOW! He's the new Robert Ludlum.

Only thing - I woke up at 5 a.m. with the name of one character flashing in my head like it was on a movie marquee. I don't want to give any spoilers but this is going to drive me nuts. This morning I went through all the scenes with this character and my question still stands. Maybe this character is being saved for another book? Aauugghhhh!!!

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on January 20, 2021, 02:35:20 pm
I'm glad you are liking THE NIGHT AGENT.

And yeah, it was weird that I did no reading the other night.

That book should come with a warning. I finished it at 3:30 a.m. WOW! He's the new Robert Ludlum.

Only thing - I woke up at 5 a.m. with the name of one character flashing in my head like it was on a movie marquee. I don't want to give any spoilers but this is going to drive me nuts. This morning I went through all the scenes with this character and my question still stands. Maybe this character is being saved for another book? Aauugghhhh!!!

The only reason I didn't finish the book in one go is that I actually passed out in exhaustion. But I love the warning label idea for the book. You should check out his book from last year called THE HOUR OF THE ASSASSIN.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 20, 2021, 11:54:41 pm
I'm glad you are liking THE NIGHT AGENT.

And yeah, it was weird that I did no reading the other night.

That book should come with a warning. I finished it at 3:30 a.m. WOW! He's the new Robert Ludlum.

Only thing - I woke up at 5 a.m. with the name of one character flashing in my head like it was on a movie marquee. I don't want to give any spoilers but this is going to drive me nuts. This morning I went through all the scenes with this character and my question still stands. Maybe this character is being saved for another book? Aauugghhhh!!!

The only reason I didn't finish the book in one go is that I actually passed out in exhaustion. But I love the warning label idea for the book. You should check out his book from last year called THE HOUR OF THE ASSASSIN.

Read that one already. I loved it!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on January 21, 2021, 12:02:15 am
Okay - two issues with the Night Agent. The first involves a disappearing character - enough said about that one.

The other thing that is driving me nuts is a discussion about whether the flowering trees in D.C. are dogwoods or cherry trees. It's easy enough to confirm this - they are Japanese flowering cherries:

https://www.washingtonian.com/2012/03/01/all-about-the-cherry-blossoms/

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on February 06, 2021, 08:49:03 am
I took a brief break from mysteries last week to read the fifth volume of the comic strip For Better or for Worse: The Complete Library. The comic strip is my all-time favorite and when they announced they would be collecting it in these hardcover editions, I knew that I would be adding the pricey volumes to my bookshelves. My brief review of this volume can be read via this Goodreads link (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3806989382).

After that I dove into the David Baldacci thriller Daylight. It's the third in his Atlee Pine series and it is a phenomenal read. You can check out my review of that book via this Goodreads link (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/52041408-daylight).

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 06, 2021, 04:38:58 pm
Thanks for the links - I'm a Baldacci fan so I'm sure I'll be adding this one to my collection at some point. I have some old collections of Peanuts comic strips, my husband has a book of Far Side favorites and I have a couple collections of my favorites - Calvin and Hobbes.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on February 09, 2021, 03:25:30 pm
I finished reading the Carlene O'Connor Irish Village mystery MURDER IN AN IRISH COTTAGE today. You can check out my thoughts via this Goodreads link (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3815542436).

Next up for me: I'll be starting EVERY WAKING HOUR by Joanna Schaffhausen. It's a good time to start the book considering today is her birthday.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 09, 2021, 04:06:27 pm
I finished reading the Carlene O'Connor Irish Village mystery MURDER IN AN IRISH COTTAGE today. You can check out my thoughts via this Goodreads link (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3815542436).

Next up for me: I'll be starting EVERY WAKING HOUR by Joanna Schaffhausen. It's a good time to start the book considering today is her birthday.

I have a book by Joanna Schaffhausen that you recommended. Maybe I'll start that one today.

Yesterday I read DEATH LIGHTS A CANDLE, an Asey Mayo Cape Cod Mystery by Pheobe Atwood Taylor. Goodreads and others give it good reviews:


Death Lights a Candle
by Phoebe Atwood Taylor

3.76 · 119 Ratings · 18 Reviews · published 1932 · 6 editions

Asey Mayo fans, and newcomers, will have much to discover in Death Lights a Candle, with its special New England flavor and Cape Cod characters. As Marilyn Stasio, columnist for the New York Times writes, "Taylor's droll period whodunits are a special treat, thanks to the Codfish Sherlock, Asey Mayo, a salty Cape codger who entertains summer visitors by solving picturesque crimes."

I've been reading a lot of vintage mysteries lately, with mixed results. This one was written in 1932 and is set in the same year. One of the things that bugged me was probably accurate to that period - the woman who played the lead character complained that she couldn't follow any of the legalese related to the reading of the will, but commented that the men had no trouble at all. I'm really glad I wasn't born then.

I have Massachusetts and Vermont relatives who spend (or spent) a lot of time on the Cape, so it was interesting to read about it.

One period note - throughout the novel upstairs and downstairs were hyphenated. I wonder when that became old-fashioned?
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on February 10, 2021, 03:59:49 am
I finished reading the Carlene O'Connor Irish Village mystery MURDER IN AN IRISH COTTAGE today. You can check out my thoughts via this Goodreads link (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3815542436).

Next up for me: I'll be starting EVERY WAKING HOUR by Joanna Schaffhausen. It's a good time to start the book considering today is her birthday.

I have a book by Joanna Schaffhausen that you recommended. Maybe I'll start that one today.

Yesterday I read DEATH LIGHTS A CANDLE, an Asey Mayo Cape Cod Mystery by Pheobe Atwood Taylor. Goodreads and others give it good reviews:


Death Lights a Candle
by Phoebe Atwood Taylor

3.76 · 119 Ratings · 18 Reviews · published 1932 · 6 editions

Asey Mayo fans, and newcomers, will have much to discover in Death Lights a Candle, with its special New England flavor and Cape Cod characters. As Marilyn Stasio, columnist for the New York Times writes, "Taylor's droll period whodunits are a special treat, thanks to the Codfish Sherlock, Asey Mayo, a salty Cape codger who entertains summer visitors by solving picturesque crimes."

I've been reading a lot of vintage mysteries lately, with mixed results. This one was written in 1932 and is set in the same year. One of the things that bugged me was probably accurate to that period - the woman who played the lead character complained that she couldn't follow any of the legalese related to the reading of the will, but commented that the men had no trouble at all. I'm really glad I wasn't born then.

I have Massachusetts and Vermont relatives who spend (or spent) a lot of time on the Cape, so it was interesting to read about it.

One period note - throughout the novel upstairs and downstairs were hyphenated. I wonder when that became old-fashioned?

I'm unfamiliar with the author and the series so maybe I'll check it out. I don't know about old-fashioned but with language changing seemingly every single day for a multitude of reasons, at this point a book that came out last year could have language considered old-fashioned these days.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 11, 2021, 01:27:25 am
I agree about the constant changes in language and even in punctuation. I love all the hats people wear in old books, and the fashions are always fun.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on February 12, 2021, 04:47:15 pm
I finished reading the Joanna Schaffhausen thriller EVERY WAKING HOUR today. I loved it! You can check out my review of the book via this Goodreads link (https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/3829656313).
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 16, 2021, 10:49:26 pm
I finished Catriona McPherson's stand-alone AS SHE LEFT IT last night. I knew I wasn't going to be able to sleep until I finished it. Wow - so many twists! I really liked it.

This morning I started another book by this author - another stand-alone. My edition is called HOUSE.TREE.PERSON. It was also published as WEIGHT OF ANGELS.

I was trying to choose between several books but I started in on this one after reading the date on page one, as the story opens: Tuesday, February 16. I figure it's a sign I should read it today!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on February 17, 2021, 03:45:55 am

I was trying to choose between several books but I started in on this one after reading the date on page one, as the story opens: Tuesday, February 16. I figure it's a sign I should read it today!

Yeah, that's a definite sign.  ;D
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 19, 2021, 01:00:37 am
I forgot to mention one thing about AS SHE LEFT IT. The main character's name is Opal. In one scene, she mentions how rare it was to have other girls with names starting with "O" in her classes at school.

With the popularity of Olivia, I think O names might be a little more common now. When I tried to think of others, the first one that came to mind was Oline, like Mystery Scene's Oline Cogdill.

Others I came up with: Olga, Ophelia, Ondine, Oprah, Orchid, Orla, Olive - any others you can think of?
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on February 19, 2021, 07:35:13 am
I just finished reading an advance copy of the debut thriller from Robyn Gigl called BY WAY OF SORROW. I'm going to be submitting a review to the magazine so I won't say anything more here for now.

So I loved the book and my review was printed in the magazine. But the publication got pushed back from last year to the end of March this year.

When I looked at the review section PDF that was sent to me for the upcoming new issue, I noticed a trade ad from Kensington Publishing about the book. And wouldn't you know it, the review quote they used at the top of the ad was mine! Totally cool I must say.

Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 20, 2021, 07:01:59 pm
Congratulations - that is so cool!
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on February 26, 2021, 10:18:33 am
I am currently reading an advance copy of the Marc Cameron thriller BONE RATTLE. I'll be reviewing it for Mystery Scene and I just got another ARC in the mail yesterday that looks promising as well.

Oh and I'm picking up Amy Pershing's A SIDE OF MURDER tomorrow. The series is set on Cape Cod (not sure about what town exactly yet) but since I'm just off of the Cape, I figured I'd give it a try.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 26, 2021, 05:40:24 pm
I've been reading a lot:

I liked book one of a series by M.S. Morris. It's called ASPIRE TO DIE and I liked it a lot.

I also read A GLANCING LIGHT by Aaron Elkins. It had more violence than other books of his I've read, so it wasn't a favorite. (My favorites are the book he and his wife co-wrote.)

I really liked the first book in Deborah Blake's new Catskills Pet Rescue cozy series - FURBIDDEN FATALITY.. I'm looking forward to more books in this series.

I'm currently about halfway through Book Ten in Nancy Warren's Vampire Knitting Club series - GARTERS AND GARGOYLES. I think I only have two books left in this series. Luckily, she wrote other series - I'm looking forward to reading those, too.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: JRob on February 27, 2021, 01:48:43 pm
I just picked up the Amy Pershing book A SIDE OF MURDER today. It's the first book in the Cape Cod Foodie mystery series. I read about her and the book on the Jungle Red Writers blog and put it on my must-buy list.

But I also stopped off at my local comic shop where I put in an order for J.C. Vaughn's SECOND WEDNESDAY, which is the first book in the Donovan Bay series. It's a prose novel and it comes out in May. I also discovered that Image Comics will start publishing a nine issue miniseries called THE GOOD ASIAN, which is about (obviously) an Asian detective in 1936 Chinatown. I added that to my pull list.

And I picked up the first issue of a new miniseries called Stray Dogs. It's a murder mystery but the main characters are all dogs. The main dog is trying to find their owner and a killer may have done his human in. The art is done in the Don Bluth animation style and check out the fantastic homage cover art for the first issue.
Title: Re: My latest read is...
Post by: Becke Davis on February 27, 2021, 03:32:02 pm
I just picked up the Amy Pershing book A SIDE OF MURDER today. It's the first book in the Cape Cod Foodie mystery series. I read about her and the book on the Jungle Red Writers blog and put it on my must-buy list.

But I also stopped off at my local comic shop where I put in an order for J.C. Vaughn's SECOND WEDNESDAY, which is the first book in the Donovan Bay series. It's a prose novel and it comes out in May. I also discovered that Image Comics will start publishing a nine issue miniseries called THE GOOD ASIAN, which is about (obviously) an Asian detective in 1936 Chinatown. I added that to my pull list.

And I picked up the first issue of a new miniseries called Stray Dogs. It's a murder mystery but the main characters are all dogs. The main dog is trying to find their owner and a killer may have done his human in. The art is done in the Don Bluth animation style and check out the fantastic homage cover art for the first issue.

Thanks for the suggestions! I'm interested in the Stray Dogs series. It sounds a bit like Spencer Quinn's books. I love the way he writes. It's rare for a mystery to make me laugh out loud but Chet, the dog protagonist, has given me the giggles many times.