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review 2020-05-24 14:41
The Disappearance of Mr. Davenheim ★★★★★
The Disappearance of Mr. Davenheim (A short story) - Agatha Christie

Although I am really just getting to know him, I think M. Poirot may be at his best in short-story form. I love everything about him, from his arrogance to his insistence of the use of his little gray cells to his mustaches. And the solutions to his mysteries are almost always a surprise but are never, ever a cheat. 


Audiobook, borrowed from my public library via Overdrive. Sad as I was that Hugh Fraser wasn't narrating this, David Suchet nevertheless did a fine job. 

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text 2020-05-22 18:17
Friday reads - 22.05.2020
The Hobbit - J.R.R. Tolkien
The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal and the Real Count of Monte Cristo - Tom Reiss
The Importance of Being Earnest and Other Plays - Oscar Wilde
Murder in the Mews: Four Cases of Hercule Poirot (Audio) - Agatha Christie,Nigel Hawthorne

Ever since the pandemic / quarantine situation has started, I´m even more of a mood reader than I usually am, craving a specific genre for a week or two and then all of a sudden, I´m craving another genre.


For the last two weeks I´ve been in the mood for reading classics. But now, after having reread Miss Buncle´s Book, I´m in the mood for re-reading another book. And yet, I´m still not entirely out of the classics phase and I have a slight urge to read fantasy as well. In a nutshell: my reading is all over the place.


Looking at my shelves, only The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings Trilogy fulfills all these criteria. And I´m a stickler for reading books in order, so The Hobbit is going to be one of the books I will be reading over the weekend.


I started The Black Count a couple of days ago and I´m slowly working my way through it, reading a chapter here and there. So far it´s incredibly fascinating to learn more about Alexandre Dumas family and how their story has influenced his writing. 


I plan on reading the last two plays by Oscar Wilde in The Importance of Being Earnest and other Stories collection. I already loved "The Importance of Being Earnest", "Lady Windermere´s fan" was a pretty strong play as well and yesterday I have read the play "Salomé", which I didn´t like at all. The two remaining plays are "A Woman of no Importance" and "An Ideal Husband".


And my audiobook at the moment is Murder on the Mews by Agatha Christie. This collection of Poirot short stories is not one of my favorites by her and I didn´t enjoy Nigel Hawthorne´s narration of the "Murder in the Mews" short story very much. Luckily the next story in the collection is narrated by Hugh Fraser.


Have a nice weekend everyone and happy reading :D

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review 2020-05-17 10:25
Agatha Christie - Cat among the pigeons (and very belated thoughts about the Buddy Read)
Cat Among the Pigeons - Agatha Christie

Even if I joined in pretty late in the game, the three weeks during which I managed to follow the Reading Away the Pandemic Buddy Read were a fun experience. I've done some Buddy Reads with other people in read life, but never online, and it went better than I would have imagined.


The only thing I regret was that I wish I had been more active, but the fact I'm a bit of a slow reader and real life issues didn't really help; while I finished "Tenant for death" in time, it took me a bit longer to get through "The daughter of time" and "Cat among the pigeons". Not that it was that huge an problem, since that way I did manage to enjoy them with more calm - as I said in another post, I have the bad habit of rushing through the last few pages of a book.


The BR was also a new experience for me in another way: I'm the kind of person who prefers watching my cozy mysteries in movies and TV shows, rather than reading them, so this was an interesting change of pace for me. All in all it was a very fun experience that I'll definitely try again, though hopefully at a time when I'll have fewer things to deal with, so that I can fully concentrate on it.


Now, on to the book itself, Agatha Christie's "Cat among the pigeons". While I'm familiar with Poirot and the general concepts and atmosphere of her works, especially those with Poirot, I haven't read much written by her - I remember reading a couple of her books as a kid, during the summer holidays, but I don't have a clear memory of them.


All in all, I found the book very enjoyable, even though it I didn't find it as good as the other two we went through during the buddy read. Solid mystery, even if some of the details and twists were predictable. I didn't mind Poirot entering the story that late, since it gave time to build up a very interesting background, and the international intrigue angle was very well done.


That said, I found the pacing really sluggish at points, and like I mentioned above some elements were easy to predict, which didn't fully pull me in. For me, this was the least interesting of the three books I've read - but it wasn't a bad book, at all.


Fun fact: the official title of the Italian translation of this book is "Gruesome quiz". Weird choice.

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text 2020-05-16 10:46
Reading progress update: I've read 100%.
Death in the Clouds - Agatha Christie,Hugh Fraser

Not one of my favorite Poirot novels, but still a good one. The biggest issues that I have with this book are the lack of memorable characters, the fact that I found the solution to the mystery to be a bit lackluster and the final reveal to be not very well developed.


However, Poirot is a first rate matchmaker, especially in this novel. And I adore that about him.



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text 2020-05-15 17:28
#FridayReads 5.15.2020
Mrs. McGinty's Dead - Agatha Christie
Lost in a Good Book - Jasper Fforde
Few Eggs and No Oranges: The Diaries of Vere Hodgson 1940-45 - Vere Hodgson,Jenny Hartley
The Body in the Dumb River - George Bellairs

I have four books on the go right now, although at least two of them are nearly finished.



Mrs. McGinty's Dead: This is another one that I started last weekend and then got sidetracked away from - it's the most recent book on my Christie comfort reread. It's one of Ariadne Oliver's most delightful appearances in print, and that makes it a fun reread. Poirot leaves London for this one, and makes an early appearance in the action. There are some other fun side-characters, including Mrs. Summerhayes, who is a bit of a hoot. I'm again quite a ways into this one, and it won't take long to finish.


Lost In A Good Book: I just started this one on my kindle - I have an omnibus edition checked out from my library, and I'll likely only read this one right now. I enjoyed the first Thursday Next book by Jasper Fforde, so when I saw the omnibus available on Overdrive, I decided to read book 2.


A Few Eggs and No Oranges: I bought this Persephone edition a few months ago and I've been making my way through it rather slowly. It's quite a long book at 590 pages, and I find that it works well to read a week or two, or maybe a month, at a time. As I'm not worried about speed-finishing this one, you'll likely see it on my Friday Reads for quite sometime. The book itself is the diary of Vere Hodgson, a Londoner who worked for a Notting Hill Gate charity during the war, and who survived the London Blitz. She is described as sparky and unflappable.


The Body in the Dumb River: I've been reading this one for too long at this point - I started it last weekend and then set it aside for some other books at about the 1/3 mark. It won't take long to finish, so it's first up for the weekend. It was originally published in 1961, and I am reading the British Library Crime Classics series reprint pictured. The cover is just as lovely in person.


That should take care of most, if not all of my weekend!

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