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review 2018-06-22 03:55
Death from a Top Hat by Clayton Rawson
Death from a Top Hat - Clayton Rawson

Series: The Great Merlini #1

 

When an occultist is murdered in an impossible locked room mystery, a magician is called in to consult on the case. I was interested in how the murder was done, but I found the writing to be pretty sloppy. For example, Rawson has his Merlini character enumerate theories or possibilities several times and in one case dispenses with any approximation of dialogue and just writes numbers on the page with the corresponding item. And Merlini could get pretty tedious even when Rawson gave a nod towards actual dialogue.

 

Between Merlini and the POV character Harte's meta-ness, I don't think I'll be reading any more of these mysteries.

 

Previous update:

17 %

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review 2018-06-14 23:25
SCARDOWN by ELIZABETH BEAR
Scardown - Elizabeth Bear

I'll start with complaints. 
1. If your book is written in English, if you use another language in same book make sure you have the English translation. I've seen this done before in many book I've read. It's irritating if you don't have access to the internet to translate sometimes whole paragraphs of dialogue.
2. When the POV changes, maybe list in the paragraph title whose POV it is or maybe "Casey thought. . ." so we have an idea who is talking. One chapter took me over 1-1/2 pages to figure out whose POV it was.

I loved the ending. The one man, two women (not lesbian) thing - I just couldn't imagine it working so smoothly. Overall, a good book/series.

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text 2018-06-14 17:51
This month's free ebook from TOR (Macmillan) -- last 24 hours to get free
A Darker Shade of Magic - V.E. Schwab

Yay!  I got my email for this one without signing up still yet again.  Maybe (I say maybe because it looked more like the usual newsletter which had a blurb about free ebook than the ebook notice I used to get).

 

Boo!  Says was made available June 12 and can only download through June 15.  But, I just got the email.

 

At any rate, hurry up to download  from https://ebookclub.tor.com/ .  To see publisher's details on book - https://us.macmillan.com/books/9780765376466 

 

 

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text 2018-06-12 17:57
Reading progress update: I've read 17%.
Death from a Top Hat - Clayton Rawson

Reading this at the same time as listening to a Hamish Macbeth audiobook is making me read it in a Scottish accent in my head, which is just plain weird.

 

So far I'm not a huge fan of the narrator and the ultra meta style that had the narrator/POV character starting off the book by writing a magazine article about detective novels. I am, however, still curious to find out how this locked-room mystery is resolved.

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text 2018-06-10 21:42
Reading progress update: I've read 13%.
The Penguin Pool Murder - Stuart Palmer

I know I'm supposed to be finishing my library books so I can get to Homicide Sanitarium, but Kobo is having a sale that had some interesting old mysteries, so I'm trying to figure out if I'd actually want to read more from the series in question.

 

But I'm also sleepy. So very sleepy.

 

So far it's cute though. A 1930s schoolteacher is supposed to get involved in a murder investigation after she discovers a body when on a fieldtrip with her class. She can be amusingly forceful. A couple excerpts:

 

"Who was the first person to see the body?”
Miss Withers stepped forward. “I was. Go ahead, young man.”
It nettled Piper to be called a young man by a woman who could not have been any older than he was.

and

“Okay, then. Your full name?”
“Hildegarde Martha Withers.”
“Address?”
“One-eleven West Seventy-sixth Street. I share an apartment there with two other teachers.”
“Occupation?”
“At present, answering foolish questions. Young man, I told you I was a teacher.”

That last line (At present, answering foolish questions) makes me giggle.

 

 

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