|Love's Ice Cream|
A fair few number of people out, not huge crowds but very few with masks on. Having said that, they respected distance markers and everyone was polite and friendly.
As mentioned, I finished a book this morning and have selected the replacement. I'll update those for you and also continue with my look at the Spy genre, this time one of the well-known authors, even if new for me.
1. The Body in the Library by Agatha Christie (Miss Marple #2).
"The Body In The Library is the 2nd Jane Marple mystery by Agatha Christie, originally published in 1941. A body is discovered at the estate of the Bantry's, a couple who are friends of Miss Marple. both Mr. and Mrs. Bantry do not recognize the young lady when interrogated by the local police. Mrs. Bantry asks Jane Marple to help as she knows that Jane has a knack for solving crimes.
When the girl is identified, it turns out she was a dancer at a hotel down the road from St Mary Mead. While the police investigate, Mrs. Bantry takes Jane to the hotel to conduct their own investigations. As well Sir Henry Clithering, a retired police commissioner is asked to help out by Conway Jefferson, resident at the hotel and a friend of the victim.
Christie writes in a clear, concise, eminently readable tale. Miss Marple plays more of a role in this story than I remember from her first appearance. She's an excellent character and I find it interesting that in the books, so far at least, that the police seem to respect her input more than they seem to do so in the TV movies. I may be wrong there.
As always there are many suspects and they are all viable. Miss Marple seems to grasp the case with very little information and moves along at a nice pace. There are nice little touches in the story. I especially liked the reference to autographs a young boy has from Dorothy Sayers and Agatha Christie. She's the Alfred Hitchcock of novels, making appearances when you least expect it.
Everything about the story was entertaining, the writing, the characters, the mystery itself and the solution, which just sort of happens but is still satisfying. The story stands the test of time and was an excellent cozy mystery. (4 stars)"
1. Brother Odd by Dean Koontz (Odd Thomas #3).
"St. Bartholomew’s Abbey sits in majestic solitude amid the wild peaks of California’s high Sierra, a haven for children otherwise abandoned, and a sanctuary for those seeking insight. Odd Thomas has come here to learn to live fully again, and among the eccentric monks, their other guests, and the nuns and young students of the attached convent school, he has begun to find his way. The silent spirits of the dead who visited him in his earlier life are mercifully absent, save for the bell-ringing Brother Constantine and Odd’s steady companion, the King of Rock 'n' Roll.
But trouble has a way of finding Odd Thomas, and it slinks back onto his path in the form of the sinister bodachs he has met previously, the black shades who herald death and disaster, and who come late one December night to hover above the abbey’s most precious charges. For Odd is about to face an enemy who eclipses any he has yet encountered, as he embarks on a journey of mystery, wonder, and sheer suspense that surpasses all that has come before."
The Spy / Thriller Novel - Eric Ambler
a. Background to Danger aka Unknown Danger (1937)
"Kenton's career as a journalist depended on his facility with languages, his knowledge of European politics, and his quick judgment. Where his judgment sometimes failed him was in his personal life. When he finds himself on a train bound for Austria with insufficient funds after a bad night of gambling, he jumps at the chance to earn a fee to help a refugee smuggle securities across the border. He soon discovers that the documents he holds have a more than monetary value, and that European politics has more twists and turns than the most convoluted newspaper account."
b. Cause for Alarm (1938).
The complete list of Ambler's works can be found at this link.