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text 2019-12-01 17:28
Discworld December Group Read
Guards! Guards! - Terry Pratchett

 

In all the Festive Tasks excitement, let's all not forget that our December group read also starts today -- and it's a truly great one (IMHO one of the best books in the entire series): the first book of the Night Watch subseries, and though actually written almost exactly 30 years ago, Pratchett could have published it, essentially word for word, as his comment on today's world.  I read it for Halloween Bingo 2019 and was completely and utterly blown away.

 

Speaking of Festive Tasks, however, it of course does also qualify for the "Hogswatch" book task ... as well as "Festivus", "All Saints' Day / Día de los Muertos", and "Guy Fawkes Night".

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review 2019-11-12 19:25
One of this year's Christmas mysteries
Duck the Halls - Donna Andrews

I had a little bit of a hard time rating this book because I liked it, but I also think that it is one of those series that will grow on me since it seems to be so character driven.

 

I usually don't like jumping into series in the middle, but these books are pretty expensive for kindle, and, while my library has most of them, the first one has entered some sort of parallel universe where it is apparently infinitely unavailable. It's Schrodinger's book, but it pretty much only does not exist. I decided to just say screw it, and start with book #16, which may not have been ideal.

 

I get the sense that the crime involved is really secondary to the characters, and I don't know the characters yet. I was trying to explain it to my husband, and came up with "The Northern Exposure of murder mystery series" but set in Virginia, not Alaska. Lots of eccentric, quirky characters who do eccentric and quirky things. I spent the entire book trying to figure out what Meg Langslow does, and I'm still not sure. Something churchy, but not a pastor or rector or anything? She has an office in a church - I figured out that much.

 

Anyway, I feel like I need to read more. I liked the characters I met, even if there was a lot happening that was confusing to me. I can't get Murder with Peacocks, apparently, but I can get Murder with Puffins, which is book 2.

 

MBD, what do you think? I already have two other Meg Langslow Christmas mysteries: Six Geese A-Slayin' and Lark, The Herald Angels Sing, checked out. Should I return them, and start at the beginning, or should I just go on as I have begun with the scattered approach and expect that everything will start to make more sense about five books in?

 

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text 2019-11-10 15:32
24 Festive Tasks: Door 5 - Bon Om Touk: Book
And Then There Were None - Agatha Christie,Dan Stevens
And Then There Were None - Agatha Christie

Can't think of a better choice for this holiday than to revisit this one, within days of its 80th publication anniversary.  Particularly with as much water on the cover as on the wonderful audio featuring Dan Stevens and my stand-alone print edition ...

 

(Task: Read a book by a Korean author or set in Korea, that takes place at sea or on a river, where the plot involves a festival, where the moon or rain plays a pivotal role in the plot, or with rain, water or the moon on the cover.)

 

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text 2019-11-05 13:30
24 Festive Tasks: Door 3 - Melbourne Cup Day: Book
The Rose Rent - Ellis Peters,Nadia May
The Rose Rent - Ellis Peters

For this one, inspired by Moonlight, I decided to revisit one of my all-time favorite series ... with a book that very appropriately has roses on the covers of many of its editions because it is, actually all about roses -- or one rose bush in particular.

 

(Task: Read a book about horses, with a horse or with roses on the cover, about gardening, set in Australia or by an Australian author.)

 

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text 2019-10-24 16:34
Reading progress update: I've listened to 30% (approximately).
The Hollow Man - Peter Noble,John Dickson Carr

 

This is a reread, but I'm in sore need of a palate cleanser.  Nothing better to turn to than the most celebrated and tricky locked room mystery ever -- which definitely is a book that calls for being read a couple of times in order to yield all of its secrets.  And what really stands out to me upon this revisit is how much of the solution Dickson Carr actually presents in the first chapters of the book --

in fact, the key fact is right there on the very first page.

(spoiler show)

And yet, the "how" is so intricately constructed that I had to read the solution twice to take it all in when I read the book for the very first time.

 

I've long read my "Locked Room Mystery" bingo book, but I'm just going to count it towards that square as well.  For anyone who, at this late stage of the game, happens to still be looking for a book for the Deadlands square, though, I think it would qualify for that square as well, though (ditto "Darkest London" and, of course, "Murder Most Foul" and the two "Genre" squares (Mystery / Suspense)).

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