So did you miss me?
I’m picturing me more like this…
… and hopefully a lot less like this!
I have had a busy month working on my talk, which is now all done and dusted, with a swish PowerPoint to boot. Pausing the blog was definitely the right move, as I ended up having 9 medical appointments this month also. (I think they should start some kind of loyalty reward scheme, free book or chocolate for every 10 appointments…)
Before the blog went on holiday I set you a challenge to see how many of these adorable detectives you could find on my blog:
So to provide that all important moment of closure, as no doubt you have all had many sleepless night, here are the list of novels I have reviewed which also had a furry sleuth added to them:
- She Shall Have Murder by Delano Ames
- Glass on the Stairs by Margaret Scherf
- There’s Trouble Brewing by Nicholas Blake
- Bodies in a Bookshop by R. T. Campbell
- Death’s Bright Dart by V. C. Clinton Baddeley
- Death in High Heels by Christianna Brand
- Death by Appointment by James Corbett
- Death in a Bookstore by Augustus De Angelis
- Murder is a Collector’s Item by Elizabeth Dean
- The Patient in Room 18 by Mignon G. Eberhart
- Now I Lay Me Down to Die by Elizabeth Tebbetts-Taylor
- Murder in the WPA by Alexander Williams
- Smallbone Deceased by Michael Gilbert
- With a Bare Bodkin by Cyril Hare
- Murder by Inches by Stanley Hopkins Junior
- The Bank with the Bamboo Door by Dolores Hitchens
- Murder Isn’t Easy by Richard Hull
- The Shop Window Murder by Vernon Loder
- Fatal in my Fashion by Pat McGerr
- The Face on the Cutting Room Floor by Cameron McCabe
- Murder to Music by Margaret Newman
- Murder on the Blackboard by Stuart Palmer
- Murder Must Advertise by Dorothy L. Sayers
- The Vet it was that Died by Marguerite Silverman
- Fatality in Fleet Street by Christopher St John Sprigg
- Death in the Dentist’s Chair by Molly Thynne
- Murder in a Bookshop by Carolyn Wells
- Murder in the Telephone Exchange by June Wright
- Stop Press – Murder! by Peter Stirling
- Beginning with a Bash by Alice Tilton
The common theme between them all was that murder takes places in a workplace setting. The cats have now left those particular review posts, no doubt hot on the trail of another mystery.
The blog might have been having some time off, but I couldn’t go a whole month without doing any reading at all. So over the coming days I will be posting my thoughts on July’s reads. To give you a sneak peek, here are some snapshot sections from some of the covers:
I also read a three in one title, but the cover was not overly suited to the above puzzle so for this one I have removed all the vowels from the three titles and the author’s name.
TH THNG BYND RSN
CH F CRLSS VC
Author: LSBTH HLDNG
This is not a conventional book of the month post, but I thought I could still share with you some of my July Books of the Month from the past.
Back in 2016 the best novel of the month was The Sinking Admiral (2016) by the Detection Club, which is a hilarious read with thoughtful nods towards Golden Age of detective fiction. I also gave out a rare non-fiction Book of the Month prize to Megan Hoffmans’ Gender and Representation in British ‘Golden Age’ Crime Fiction (2016). This is a really interesting book, and it is a shame that its price puts it out of the budget range of many of the people who would enjoy reading it.
Rarity is another factor which can put books out of the reach of readers, and this is the case for my July 2017 Book of the Month, Mind Your Own Murder (1948) by Yolanda Foldes. I really enjoyed this WW2 set mystery, with its unusual premise. I have been dying to talk to someone about this book, but it seems unlikely short of it being reprinted.
It is hard to knock the winner of 2018’s July Book of the Month, which was Anthony Gilbert’s Death Knocks Three Times (1949). Brilliant characters, plot, clues, solution and atmosphere.
The winner of the July 2019 Book of the Month was a surprising choice (for me), as it was A Judgement in Stone (1977) by Ruth Rendell. Rendell’s writing is not usually my cup of tea, but this non-series novel by her is one of the few exceptions and I loved the way it builds up the tension.
Finally, last year saw July’s Book of the Month prize be split between Death of Jezebel (1948) by Christianna Brand and Elisabeth Sanxay Holding’s The Death Wish (1934). The puzzle factor of the former and the gripping suspense of the latter were significant factors in their win.
So what books have you read this month? And all importantly, what are you looking forward to reading next month?