I seem to start every post with an apology these days when I realise that I have not written for a week. I am so sorry but I have been so busy it is just daft and I am off to London again tomorrow for another mad few days so thought I had better do a catch up on my reading which is what I am supposed to write about after all.
I would like to say thank you to whoever visited this blog and recommended the books of Sue Grafton, her 'alphabet' series featuring Kinsey Milhone a private eye in California. I found a couple of them in the library, borrowed them and am now working my way through them. I know perfectly well I am going to do a binge and read them one after the other and then have to sit and wait for the next one. I always do it and cannot break the habit.
I am really enjoying them. So far have read A, B, F, K, W and X so as per I am reading them all out of order. They are sassy and smart and written with great style and I am happy to add them to my list of authors to keep an eye out for.
I have also re-read a couple of Agathas recently - Crooked House, a stand alone Christie and I think one of her best with an ending that really knocked me sideways when I first read it about thirty years ago. One of her best in my humble. Then The Clocks - a later story which is rather convoluted and, in the end, the solution is one of her weakest. The characters in it are not particularly interesting either though Poirot pops up and makes it worthwhile.
I have posted about the Wintercombe books of Pamela Belle a week or so ago and I have now finished the quartet with the last two A Falling Star and Treason's Gift both of which kept me pinned to the sofa when I had a mad rush to the head and read both of them in one day. The four books are available for Kindle from Amazon and if you are a lover of historical fiction then these will be for you. The author has also written another series about the Heron family and I have downloaded the first one and then did a mad search on Amazon and tracked down the out of print paperbacks and bought those as well. So I have a good pile ahead of me.
I took delivery of a parcel yesterday and inside were three of the latest releases from the British Library in their Crime Classic Series. I had come across George Bellairs earlier this year and his detective, Inspector Littlejohn. These books lack the panache of the Golden Age crime luminaries such as Sayers and Christie et al but they have a charming old fashioned air about them which I rather like. I posted about him earlier, here, and was delighted upon contacting the BL and suggesting he be reprinted that I discovered they already were!
The Berkley book is a classic and I am ashamed to say have never read it. On the other hand, I am delighted that I have not as it means I have a delightful prospect ahead of me. Then a collection of Winter stories to complete this great trio. All of them edited by Martin Edwards, who is now President of the Crime Club and who came along to the Felixstowe Festival in the summer, along with Rob Davies from the British Library, and gave an really interesting talk on the discovery and selection of these titles. They have really taken off in a big way and long may they continue.
So lots of crime which I love and lots of history and finding that this latter genre which I have neglected for so long has now caught my interest again. Opens up a huge amount of titles for me to explore.
As I said I am off to London tomorrow and am attending the Kew Book Festival and will be in the audience to hear Helen Rappaport talking about her new book Caught in the Revolution which I have just started and is, as always, brilliant. It has received great reviews and I know this talk will be wonderful.
The summer is now ending and the nights will be drawing in and I find when the curtains are drawn and I am indoors I can concentrate more on reading and writing. Fingers crossed..