Tag: Mystery

Feb 25 2019

All the World’s a Stage by Boris Akunin

For a number of years, I was worried that Boris Akunin’s English-language publishers (the estimable Weidenfeld & Nicolson) had despaired of finding an audience for the Russian mystery writer’s work, and I would have to read the remaining stories in German and miss out on Andrew Bromfield’s witty translations, or really really really improve my …

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Feb 22 2019

A Map of the Dark (The Searchers #1) by Karen Ellis

Insofar as flawed protagonists go, this was a surprisingly satisfying novel. At “only” 290 pages, it isn’t a dense novel, which works in its favor, honestly, as it keeps the plot moving. I can’t help but compare and prefer it to Tana French’s mystifyingly overrated Dublin Murder Squad series. Sure Ms French has moments of …

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Feb 14 2019

The Vanishing Stair (Truly Devious #2) by Maureen Johnson

In book two of the Truly Devious series, Stevie’s return to Ellingham Academy comes at a price. Her benefactor, the abhorrent politician Edward King whom her parents idolize, wants her back at the school in order to keep an eye on his wayward son, noting that her relationship with his kid seems to calm the …

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Jan 29 2019

The Dead Queens Club by Hannah Capin

The sordid tale of King Henry VIII and his six wives is probably the one most well-known to those with even only a passing interest in English history. As an Anglophile myself, I grew up reading Antonia Fraser’s The Six Wives of Henry VIII alongside other titles more obscure on the topic, and heartily enjoyed …

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Jan 05 2019

Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl

I absolutely adored Marisha Pessl’s debut novel, Special Topics in Calamity Physics, and was one of many fans disappointed and confused by her follow-up, Night Film (tho the multimedia aspect of that novel was really, really nice.) So I put her third novel, Neverworld Wake, on my to-read pile but didn’t feel any burning need …

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Dec 23 2018

Social Creature by Tara Isabella Burton

Shamefully, I have never read The Talented Mr Ripley, electing instead to read the Wiki page to see how much symmetry there is between that classic and this novel that does not pretend not to be very much inspired by that earlier book (in my defense, there are only so many hours in the day, …

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Dec 17 2018

The Favorite Sister by Jessica Knoll

I don’t think it’s possible to review The Favorite Sister without bringing up Jessica Knoll’s searing debut Luckiest Girl Alive. That book centered a female protagonist who was done being “nice”, to the consternation of a large number of readers. To the rest of us, TifAni FaNelli was a source of cathartic glee. TFS expands …

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Nov 01 2018

In A Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware

I kinda don’t remember why I placed this on my library hold list, but I finally got around to reading it and, hmm. It’s very readable. I tore through the last half really quickly, almost compulsively: it’s written in such a way that I just had to keep going to find out whodunnit. Unfortunately, it …

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Oct 12 2018

Precious and Grace by Alexander McCall Smith

Precious and Grace begins with Mma Ramotswe, founder and proprietor of the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, reflecting on the people in her life: people who are late, others who are still with us; family, particularly her husband Mr J.L.B. Matekoni; friends and colleagues, from the formidable Mma Potokwani who runs the local orphanage to …

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Oct 05 2018

Steeplejack (Steeplejack #1) by A.J. Hartley

It took me three tries, but I finally found enough time to get past the first five percent of the book to dive into this excellently rendered fantasy world. Which isn’t to say that the first five percent was bad, just that it’s awfully dense with chimney-climbing stuff, and given my heavy reading load, it …

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