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.