Since my last post on this topic, I’ve read quite a bit – but as usual I am out of synch with my reviews and non-reviews.
Books I’ve read and have reviewed or will review include Death on a Galician Shore by Domingo Villar (reviewed for Euro Crime), a book I very much enjoyed but did not move the characters on from the author’s debut, the marvellous Water Blue Eyes. The Redeemed, by M. R. Hall, turned out to be very much a return to form for coroner Jenny Cooper, and my review of that is published at Euro Crime. In addition, I’ve read The Track of Sand, the new Montalbano novel by Andrea Camilleri. As ever, the book is charming but perhaps not quite up to the mark of some of its predecessors; a very good thriller/police procedural, 66 Degrees North, by Michael Ridpath (second in his Fire and Ice series, set in Iceland); and The Gallows Bird by Camilla Lackberg, an enjoyable fourth outing for Erica and Patrick. Reviews of these three novels are submitted to Euro Crime.
Michael Connelly‘s latest, The Fifth Witness (double meaning in title) turned out to be a superior courtroom drama (reviewed at Petrona); and Blood Trail, the seventh Joe Pickett novel by C. J. Box, was as-ever very readable but I question the violent codas that seem to be increasingly a feature of these books (reviewed at Petrona).
I’ve read some books which I’m probably not going to review for a variety of reasons. One is The Prime Minister by Trollope, which I enjoyed a lot but don’t feel qualified to write an informed review. A second is The Airmen Who Would not Die by John Fuller, Jr, lent to me by a friend – interesting on aviation history but less so on the paranormal aspects. Another is Strange Fits of Passion by Anita Shreve which I might review but probably won’t as I found it a bit of a “meh” book – strong on atmosphere but rather superficial about two of the significant characters, a journalist and a violent man. A fourth is Splinter by Sebastian Fitzek, which I read as it is eligible for the International Dagger this year, and was available over Christmas as a very cheap promotion in Kindle format. I didn’t enjoy the author’s previous translated novel, Therapy, and I did not enjoy Splinter either. Hence, no review.
What next? I have another C. J. Box/Joe Pickett novel to read, Below Zero (there are two more in the series that I haven’t bought yet), as well as a proof of his upcoming standalone, Back of Beyond. I’m looking forward to the last Palliser novel, The Duke’s Children (which is thinner than the previous novels, a mere stripling at what looks to be about 700 pages). I have a couple of outstanding novels I have to read because I bought them – Where or When by Anita Shreve (part of a 2 books in 1 edition with Strange Fits of Passion) and the dreaded One Day by David Nicholls which I am convinced I’m not going to like. Last of my “recently purchased” books is one I’ve been meaning to read for ages, Intuition by Allegra Goodman, a novel about science, which is part of the current Amazon (UK) Kindle Easter promotion, so cost me £1.40 to download. Finally, I ordered Hotel Bosphorus by Esmahan Aykol, another International Dagger eligible title some time ago from Amazon but they keep emailing me saying it has been delayed at the publisher (possibly bumping it into next year’s time window?).
I haven’t really decided what to read after I finish these books. I have quite a few in my Amazon “basket” but most of those aren’t yet published. No doubt it won’t take too long for me to remedy this situation.