Book reviews 2008

[See my 2007 book reviews]


[See my 2009 book reviews]


[See my 2010 book reviews]


[See all my book reviews]


Meltdown by Martin Baker (Euro Crime, March)


No Time for Goodbye by Linwood Barclay (Petrona, January)


Written in Bone by Simon Beckett (Euro Crime, April)


The Dark Eye by Ingrid Black (Euro Crime, January)


The Scent of the Night by Andrea Camilleri (Euro Crime, February)


Through the Ruins of Midnight by Colin Campbell (Euro Crime, July)


White Nights by Ann Cleeves (Euro Crime, May).


The Overlook by Michael Connelly (Petrona, January)


The Brass Verdict by Michael Connelly (Petrona, November)


A Greater Evil by Natasha Cooper (Euro Crime, April)


Disco for the Departed by Colin Cotterill (Euro Crime, June)


The Serbian Dane by Leif Davidsen (Petrona brief, January)


The Coffin Trail by Martin Edwards (Euro Crime, January)


The Cipher Garden by Martin Edwards (Euro Crime, March)


Waterloo Sunset by Martin Edwards (Shots, June) (Corrected version here)


The Arsenic Labyrinth by Martin Edwards (Euro Crime, October)


The Score by Faye Flam (Philadelphia Inquirer, July)


Losing You by Nicci French (Euro Crime, March)


Until it’s Over by Nicci French (Euro Crime, March)


The Likeness by Tana French (Euro Crime, October)


Die with Me by Elena Forbes (Euro Crime, January)


Black Seconds by Karin Fossum (Euro Crime, May)


Broken by Karin Fossum (Euro Crime, June)


The Dirty Secrets Club by Meg Gardiner (Philadelphia Inquirer, July)


A Small Weeping by Alex Gray (Euro Crime, March)


The Shadow in the River by Frode Grytten (Euro Crime, May)


Cold in Hand by John Harvey (Euro Crime, March)


Ritual by Mo Hayder (Euro Crime, March)


Where are you now? by Mary Higgins Clark (Petrona, May).


The Pure in Heart by Susan Hill (Euro Crime, March)


The Risk of Darkness by Susan Hill (Euro Crime, April)


The Vows of Silence by Susan Hill (Euro Crime, June)


The Sweetness of Life by Paulus Hochgatterer (Euro Crime, October)


The Final Murder by Anne Holt (Euro Crime, November)


The Draining Lake by Arnaldur Indridason (Euro Crime, August)


Arctic Chill by Arnaldur Indridason (Euro Crime, September)


Dead Man’s Footsteps by Peter James (Euro Crime, July)


The Exception by Christian Jungersen (Petrona brief, January)


Unseen by Mari Jungstedt (Euro Crime, January)


Unspoken by Mari Jungstedt (Euro Crime, May)


The Simian Curve by Mark Lalbeharry (Euro Crime, January)


Sun Storm by Asa Larsson (Euro Crime, February)


The Blood Spilt by Asa Larsson (Euro Crime, June)


The Black Path by Asa Larsson (Euro Crime, November)


The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (Euro Crime, January)


The Girl of his Dreams by Donna Leon (Euro Crime, April).


Bad Traffic by Simon Lewis (Euro Crime, October).


Trial by Blood by John Macken (Euro Crime, May).


The Mystery Writer by Jessica Mann (Euro Crime, January)


Beneath the Bleeding by Val McDermid (Euro Crime, March)


Gallows Lane by Brian McGilloway (Euro Crime, April)


The Return by Hakan Nesser (Euro Crime, February)


The Naming of the Dead by Ian Rankin (Euro Crime, August)


Requiem by Jack Ross (Euro Crime, February)


The Butterfly Effect by Pernille Rygg (Euro Crime, May)


The Pool of Unease by Catherine Sampson (Euro Crime, April)


The Slaughter Pavilion by Catherine Sampson (Euro Crime, September)


The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield (Euro Crime, February)


Ice Trap by Kitty Sewell (Euro Crime, February)


The Murder Farm by Andrea Maria Schenkel (Euro Crime, June)


A Carrion Death by Michael Stanley (Euro Crime, April)


Last Rituals by Yrsa Sigurdardottir (Euro Crime, November)


The Man on the Balcony by Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo (Euro Crime, February)


The Laughing Policeman by Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo (Euro Crime, August)


The Fire Engine that Disappeared by Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo (Euro Crime, September)


Murder at the Savoy by Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo (Euro Crime, December)


Dead Point by Peter Temple (Petrona, May)


Echoes from the Dead by Johan Theorin (Euro Crime, July)


Detective Inspector Huss by Helene Tursten (Euro Crime, June)


The Torso by Helene Tursten (Euro Crime, July)


The Glass Devil by Helene Tursten (Euro Crime, August)


An Expert in Murder by Nicola Upson (Euro Crime, March)


Seeking Whom he may Devour by Fred Vargas (Euro Crime, February)


Wash this Blood Clean from my Hand by Fred Vargas (Euro Crime, February)


Bruno, Chief of Police by Martin Walker (Euro Crime, April)


The Outcast by Michael Walters (Euro Crime, December)


Into the Shadows by Shirley Wells (Euro Crime, May)


Stratton’s War by Laura Wilson (Euro Crime, August)


A Killing Frost by R D Wingfield (Euro Crime, October)

Best worst movie lines

Guardian Unlimited: Arts blog – film: The best worst lines in film.

As it says on the label (above), what are your favourite worst lines in films? Ronald Bergan in the Guardian post at the link highlights a couple of beauties (but as usual with Guardian blog pieces, there isn’t much more to it as the author of the piece can’t remember the lines, as opposed to scenes, that he found funny in recent films):

  • El Greco (bravely played by a British actor called Nick Ashdon) says to a priest that he expected the Inquisition to come for him, the priest replies, "They will, but there’s backlog at the moment".
  • Merle Oberon as George Sand in the Chopin biopic A Song To Remember tells the composer, "Discontinue that so-called Polonaise jumble you’ve been playing for days."
  • In I Wake Up Screaming, Victor Mature, dining Betty Grable in a smart restaurant, impresses her with his sophistication by saying to the waiter, "We’ll have the wine with the meal and coffee afterwards."

Do you have any favourites? "And did you enjoy the play, Mrs Lincoln?" is an apocryphal example that comes to mind, but whether it actually was in a movie I don’t know.

What’s right for booksellers

Martyn Daniels, author of the UK Bookseller Association’s report Brave New World, posts here: Brave New World: Reviewing Our Predictions For 2007. What did the report get right and what wrong? Check out the link. Among the "right":

  • The start of real POD services based not on short print runs but distributed printing at affordable prices. POD still moving at pace and people now looking to distribute to print rather than print and distribute. Foyles looked at the Espresso machine. Right
  • Increased importance of Internet sales, emarketing and community engagement and participation. The Internet is clearly here and becoming pervasive in all markets. For the bookstores it is now a must do. Right

Yes, two definite "rights", I’d agree. Next for Martyn and co is to make their predictions for 2008. I’m watching.

The Life of the Blog

Via Books, Inq, here is an article, Timeline: The Life of the Blog, over at National Public Radio. It’s an interesting archive of key points in the evolution of blogging — skewed, not surprisingly in view of the fact that the timeline is on a news site, to the impact of blogging on politics and current affairs. I thought it petered out at the end, though. The list captures Twitter as a recent innovation, as well as podcasting, photostreams and video (vlogs), but fails to mention the late-2007 trend of the integration of blogs with social networking sites, whether big players such as Facebook or MySpace, or niche networks such as Nature Network or Crimespace, which support blogs. If I were starting out blogging now, rather than two and a half years ago, I would do so within a social network rather than as a standalone blog (I think! I’m never entirely sure I have captured all the pros and cons of these things.) One thing I can be sure about, though — in another couple of months’ time, there will be another blog trend spreading like wildfire across the Internet.

Quick post for Christmas hols

Via Amazon, here’s a meta-list of their "best of" books in various categories for 2007. As they say, "happy shopping".

++ Sepulchre
++ Best Fiction Reads 2007
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html/ref=pe_10/?docId=1000119853

++ The QI Annual 2008
++ Best Humour Books 2007
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html/ref=pe_20/?docId=1000119863

++ On The Edge
++ Best Biographies 2007
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html/ref=pe_30/?docId=1000119553

++ Top 100
++ Customer Favourites 2007
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html/ref=pe_40/?docId=1000119963

++ The Blair Years
++ Best Political Books 2007
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html/ref=pe_50/?docId=1000120103

++ His Dark Materials Boxed set
++ Best Children’s Reads 2007
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html/ref=pe_60/?docId=1000119623

++ Lewis Hamilton
++ Best Sports Books 2007
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html/ref=pe_70/?docId=1000119683

++ Best Books of 2007
++ Great Reads
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/browse.html/ref=pe_80/?node=10369441