Daily reading is one of my favourite ways to pamper and get some self-care (I prefer the term “self-preservation”). Here’s a round up of what I read over the summer! A mixed bag with rather a lot of cozy mysteries and a couple of (pleasant) surprises!
Jane and the Waterloo map by Stephanie Barron. A historical cozy mystery (part of a series, this one is number 13) where Jane Austen solves crimes. Rather enjoyed this and will probably read more in the series. Three stars out of five.
Last Train to Helsingør by Heidi Amsinck. I picked up this book at random at our local Danish library. It looked very promising – specially commissioned short stories for BBC Radio 4 – some Scandi-noir tales. Unfortunately this was a DNF (Did Not Finish) for me. Simply too outlandish and simplistic – the kind of stories you would write in junior school. Two out of five stars.
The Weed that Strings the Hangman’s Bag by Alan Bradley. This is the second in the Flavia de Luce series which I’ve read and it was a little heavier going than the first. But looking forward to the next! Three out of five stars.
A Study in Treason by Leonard Goldberg. Another cozy mystery series, this time with, Joanna, the daughter of Sherlock Holmes solving the crimes. An interesting premise but not sure I would read others in the series. Three out of five stars.
Wedding Cake Crumble by Jenn McKinlay. Another cozy mystery, number 10 in the Cupcake Bakery Mystery series, revolving around the owner of a bakery called Fairy Tale Cupcakes who is catering her best friend’s wedding. I listened to this on audiobook. Three out of five stars.
Crowned and Dangerous by Rhys Bowen. Number 10 in the Royal Spyness series. I’ve read many of Rhys Bowen’s books before and they are always a cozy read. You know exactly what to expect. Three out of five stars.
The Clutter Corpse by Simon Brett. Aaaaaargh! I was so excited to read this because a) Simon Brett is one of my favourite cozy mystery authors (he has several series and I enjoy all of them) and b) it was labelled as a decluttering mystery. Two of my favourite things! LOL! But, alas, the book kind of fell flat. I wasn’t really interested in the main character at all and Simon Brett’s usual quirky, humorous touches were absent. Let’s cross our fingers that he’s soon back on form. Two out of five stars.
The Girl Next Door by Ruth Rendell. I listened to this on audiobook. Ruth Rendell is a fantastic writer, giving you a little slice of English society while presenting some dark crimes. It’s not a mystery as such (we know who the killer is from the beginning) but the suspense keeps going til the end. Three out of five stars.
Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata. I picked up this book at our local Danish library because of the eyecatching cover and the fact that it is set in Tokyo (one of my favourite places in the world). I’m a sucker for Japanese mysteries (though this isn’t a mystery) and love the Japanese clean style of writing. It was obviously a “hot title” beacause our library had a whole pile of these books stacked up on their summer reading table. A fast and very short read (I read it in Danish and, if I remember rightly, it’s only about 180 pages long), very quirky and with a couple of laugh out loud moments. Four out of five stars.
The Magic Chair Murder by Diane Janes. This is a new series, a historical mystery set in 1920s England. I really enjoyed the setting of this one and the characters. Four out of five stars.
Death in the Stacks by Jenn McKinlay. This was my second Jenn McKinlay read this summer (see Wedding Cake Crumble above) and this particular one was number 8 in the Library Lover’s Mystery series. I listened to this on audiobook. Simplistic but good to liste to when you are working in the garden, doing laundry, etc! Three out of five stars.
Murder at Greysbridge by Andrea Carter. This book was a very pleasant surprise! I picked this up at our local Danish library, completely at random. A really good read and I’ll definitely be checking out other books by Andrea Carter. This one is number 4 in the Inishower Mysteries series. Set in County Donegal, Ireland in the present time, featuring a solicitor called Ben (Benedicta). A fast-paced easy read. Four out of five stars.
PS: I very rarely buy books, preferring to borrow them from our wonderful Danish local libraries! I use eReolenGlobal and Libby apps to find/read books, plus Goodreads to track what I’ve read.
PPS: If you’re looking for book suggestions and reviews, my friend Sue (formerly a book seller, now a librarian) has a great book blog!
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