Sunday, 3 February 2013

February 2013 - Possible Reading Choices

Another month, another list of possible reading choices. In my last BLog, I highlighted my February Focus author, Philip K. Dick. I'm hoping to read about 8 books in February (if I manage to read 10 like last month, I'll be thrilled) and at least four of those selections will be Philip Dick novels. My other choices will fit into my various challenges. Luckily the genre challenge this month is Mysteries, so both my Individual Challenge (Mystery writers alphabetically) and the book I'm currently reading, taken from my 12 + 2 list will conveniently fit that challenge. Now on to my selections -

12 + 2 Challenge - Case Histories by Kate Atkinson. I first heard of this book when Jo and I started watching the TV series on BBC Canada. It stars Jason Isaacs as Jackson Brodie, the Private Detective who features in the books. I bought the book as soon as I realised that the series was based on a book and this is my first chance to read it. The summary provides you a bit of an idea about the book. "Cambridge is sweltering, during an unusually hot summer. To Jackson Brodie, former police inspector turned private investigator, the world consists of one accounting sheet - Lost on the left, Found on the right - and the two never seem to balance. Jackson has never felt at home in Cambridge, and has a failed marriage to prove it. Surrounded by death, intrigue and misfortune, his own life haunted by a family tragedy, he attempts to unravel three disparate case histories and begins to realise that in spite of apparent diversity, everything is connected." I started this book at the crack of February and it has drawn me in totally. The story meanders through the various cases and Brodie's life, introducing characters, the case histories. It draws you in immediately, it is intelligently written, with a lovely pace. I'm looking forward to seeing where else the stories lead me.

I will maybe read another selection from my 12 + 2 Challenge (my list is here) but I don't know which one yet; another mystery, something biographical?.. Time will tell.

Individual Reading Challenge (Alphabetical mystery writers) - In January my last book for this challenge was Sue Grafton's Q is for Quarry. I hope to read 3 in this challenge, continuing with the letter G. (I'll only list the first two, just in case I get bogged down with my monthly reading).

Caroline Graham, The Killing at Badger's Drift. This is another series that I first became aware of while enjoying the TV series. So many excellent British author's stories have been presented on British television as series. Caroline Graham's mysteries are available as Midsomer Murders (the Inspector Barnaby mysteries) and an excellent series it is. I've read one of the books previously and have had difficulty locating books from the series. The Killing at Badger's Drift was released in 1987 and was the first of the series. "Badger's Drift - a tranquil English village, home to Miss Emily Simpson, a well-liked spinster. But a gentle stroll in the nearby woods brings an abrupt end to her peaceful existence. To the village doctor, Miss Simpson's death looks natural enough but her old friend Lucy Bellringer is unconvinced and eventually drags the unwilling Chief Inspector Barnaby into the case. His investigations reveal an unexpected side to Badger's Drift - old rivalries, old loves and new scandals. And then a second, more horrifying killing shocks Barnaby into running the murderer into the ground... "

Winston Graham, Marnie. Winston Graham is an author I'm unfamiliar with, but I have found some of his books grabbing my attention and being added to my book shelf. He is noted for writing the Poldark series and also Marnie, which was made into an excellent movie by Alfred Hitchcock, starring Tippi Hedren and Sean Connery. The book synopsis is short and to the point. "Who is Marnie? Is she a sexy, hard-bitten, hands-off blonde, cold and calculating, a liar and a thief, taking her own secret revenge on the world? Or is she the world's victim, who has learnt that the only reality is money - and the greatest enemy is love?"

I don't know but I guess I'll find out.. :0)

Depending how my reading goes, I may read one more in this challenge or I may grant myself some freebies. But which ones to read? That will be a challenge in its own right. I'll let you know how it goes at the end of the month.

Good reading!

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