I've read a lot of books during May, most of which I have enjoyed very much. In keeping with my (relatively) new monthly feature (see March and April), here is a round up of my Euro Crime reviews for May, with a link to and quote from each:
My Soul to Take by Yrsa Sigurdardottir, "the second in the Thora Gudmunsdottir series, is a superbly plotted, Agatha Christie-style novel set mainly in a health-spa hotel on the Snaefellsnes peninsula of Iceland." Thora is a really great character, one of the true originals of crime fiction and one I urge you to meet.
The Pull of the Moon by Diane Janes, a debut novel about a group of students who spend the summer in a house together, and where tensions as well as temperatures reach boiling point. "I enjoyed reading THE PULL OF THE MOON very much. I also liked the settings of Birmingham, Hereford and the surrounding countryside, which are relatively under-used in English crime fiction."
Che Committed Suicide by Petros Markaris, "a long book which has many fascinating details and touches, with great characterisations and sense of place (Athens and environs). At the same time, it has a crazy crime plot. I find it hard to reconcile these two aspects. I definitely enjoyed it very much, though, and would agree with Andrea Camilleri's superbly laconic cover blurb: "I like Petros Markaris a lot". "
The Woman from Bratislava by Leif Davidsen, "a long but rewarding book, both exciting and serious".
Complicit by Nicci French, "Nicci French always delivers a solid, tense, quality read, and COMPLICIT is no exception."
Quite a varied bunch: two English, one Greek, one Danish and one Icelandic. I'm not going to attempt to choose a book of the month from that lot!
At Petrona during May, I was on a bit of a reading roll (partly due to not being able to attend Crime Fest), so there are quite a few reviews, all of which can be accessed from my 2010 annual listing: Water-blue Eyes by Domingo Villar; The Dinner Club by Saskia Noort; Twisted Wing by Ruth Newman; The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist; Money to Burn by James Grippano, The Janus Stone by Elly Griffiths; The First Rule by Robert Crais; Caught by Harlan Coben; The Shadow of Your Smile by Mary Higgins Clark; The Library of Shadows by Mikkel Birkegaard; and Fear the Worst by Linwood Barclay. (Phew!)
Another varied bunch geographically, with four USA, two English and one each of Danish, Spanish, Dutch, Canadian and Swedish. Again, practically impossible to choose a book of the month as the standard is so high and varied. However, I would say that of all these books the one I most enjoyed reading was Water-blue Eyes by Domingo Villar, which was such a delightful surprise to read, as a crime novel with a strong sense of character, place and history. I loved it. (But I also loved lots of the others!)