Tag Archives: mystery

Death Comes to Pemberley by JP.D. James

Death Comes to PemberleyDeath Comes to Pemberley by P.D. James
My rating: 1.5 of 5 stars

P.D. James, I loved The Children of Men. I even bought a copy of it to write a paper comparing it to another book for no other reason than that I found it that fascinating and intriguing. I’ve enjoyed the other books of yours I read. You are, or sadly were, an author for whom I have great respect. I just want to know, what happened with Death Comes to Pemberley?

I think I could have liked this book. I found the premise interesting and I have a long-running adoration of Pride and Prejudice. This though? This was tawdry. It went for sensationalism in a way Austen would find anathema. The characters were shadows, the plot was both weak and made me sad, and the book left me feeling irritable for days. Months later the primary thought I have about this is, “Damn authors, get off my lawn!” I even created a shelf with that name.

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Lists: Best Books Read in 2011 – # 7

Best Books Read in 2011

7. The Long Goodbye by Raymond Chandler

I neglected Raymond Chandler for far too long. The Long Goodbye hit that home with a vengeance. What a beautiful, heartbreaking book. I love Los Angeles, but the setting was mere backdrop to the complex, dark, and brilliant story which unfolded. It is rare that I immediately put a book on my favorites list, but this deserved it.

Original Review

8. Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey
9. A Great & Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray
10. The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett

Review: Death of a Cad

Death of a Cad (Hamish Macbeth, #2)Death of a Cad by M.C. Beaton
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Death of a Cad was a definite improvement on the preceding Hamis Macbeth mystery. M.C. Beaton seems to have found her stride in the genre and the characters are far more developed. We learn more about Hamish and his object of affection, Priscilla Halburton-Smythe. We also receive further proof that both the Scottish Highlands and country houses are dangerous. Also dangerous are artists and pushy fiances. (Naturally, as someone who has read many of the Regency novels the author writes as Marion Chesney I was previously aware of the trouble the latter can bring.) Overall, this was a delightful and light read. I recommend it to any fans of the English mystery genre.

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Review: The Mysterious Affair at Styles

The Mysterious Affair at Styles
The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Given how many of [a:Agatha Christie|123715|Agatha Christie|http://photo.goodreads.com/authors/1190633574p2/123715.jpg]’s works I read as an adolescent, I was somewhat astounded to realize as I read that I had not read [b:The Mysterious Affair at Styles|140290|The Mysterious Affair at Styles|Agatha Christie|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1207178577s/140290.jpg|3366260]. Written in 1916 and set during the first World War, it introduces us to both Hastings and Hercule Poirot. Like the first Miss Marple book, it is primarily fascinating because of the “origin story” aspect. Both characters became more fascinating over time as Christie developed them. That being said, this was a delightful read filled with the red herrings and twists that made Dame Agatha a master of the genre. I highly recommend this for any aficionado of English mysteries.

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Review: A Suitable Vengeance

A Suitable Vengeance
A Suitable Vengeance by Elizabeth George
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

[b:A Suitable Vengeance|234232|A Suitable Vengeance (Inspector Lynley #4)|Elizabeth George|http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51HVAW066FL._SL75_.jpg|1896269] is the fourth book in [a:Elizabeth George|1402383|Elizabeth George|http://photo.goodreads.com/authors/1235518043p2/1402383.jpg]’s Inspector Lynley series, but chronologically it occurs years before the first three. In it we see the main characters much younger and gain far more insight into the tangled relationships of Lynley, Deborah, and St. James. Given how much those relationships make me want to shake each one of the players hard, this was my least favorite so far. The mystery itself was interesting, but bizarre in a way that did not redeem the book. I did enjoy the revelations regarding Lynley’s relationship with his family, but again, those did not do enough to redeem the book. Not weak enough to put me off the series, but not what I would call good.

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