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review 2018-01-02 13:43
Very good mystery thriller – highly recommended
The Man Who Died - Antti Tuomainen,David Hackston


This novel centers around Jaaska, a Finnish mushroom entrepreneur, who discovers that has been poisoned over some length of time and is going to die. This leads to him investigating who is responsible. Other issues come to light to complicate his life.

The balance between descriptions and plot is about right. With excellent characterisation, this novel is a real page-turner (I read it in a couple of days) and worthy of the Scandi-noir genre. Highly recommended.

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.


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review 2017-10-20 11:30
The Pool House: Someone Lied. Someone Di... The Pool House: Someone Lied. Someone Died. - Tasmina Perry

Nat and Jem move to New York when he is offered his dream job - sounds perfect, but is it? They become friends with a group of very rich people who spend their weekends in the exclusive, upmarket Hamptons where there is a mystery concerning Alice, one of the previous weekenders. Jem makes it her mission to find out what happened. This was a very easy to read story which flowed along nicely as the reader discovers the murky doings of the jet set. Although it was easy to see how it would all pan out, it didn't detract at all from the book. Loved the New York/Hamptons descriptions and the cover too. Exactly the type of book to accompany a holiday!

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review 2017-04-26 13:51
Convoluted Crime Fiction: "She Died a Lady" by John Dickson Carr
She Died a Lady - Carter Dickson

Just about every book written by John Dickson Carr is a locked room mystery, and all of them try to play fair (thus also trying to drive the reader nuts), but I always feel Carr tried too hard. His books are so convoluted that they become almost unreadable. I’m a bit reluctant to continue reading books wherein the intricacies become utterly unbelievable (why do some authors bother to impinge on our consciousness crap like this?) I’m better off reading Agatha Christie. This Carr was me being back to 'easy' reading after a hard week reading hard stuff. This one is among his middle-rankers. The method of murdering two persons close to a cliff with only his own footprints on wet sand was clever - maybe a bit too clever-clever - and the characters a touch clichéd - but then you do meet the same people over and over again in a Carr novel. The fun is in trying to out-guess him, and in the wonderful, spooky atmospheres he creates. Unlike Christie, the Carr’s leave a lot to be desired. In this case the solution just doesn't hang together. The characters and motivations are there but the explanation of the murder is just too weird. Carr once again didn’t play fair.

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review 2017-04-11 00:00
Interviewing Matisse, or The Woman Who Died Standing Up: A Novel
Interviewing Matisse, or The Woman Who Died Standing Up: A Novel - Lily Tuck I made it a third of the way through before throwing in the towel. Remarkable, it being my third try at reading this book. It will be my last attempt to connect with Lily Tuck at least on this level. She cannot reach me, nor can I reach her, with this offering of hers made under the tutelage and championing of [a:Gordon Lish|232097|Gordon Lish|https://images.gr-assets.com/authors/1267719924p2/232097.jpg]. Lily has gone on to write other acclaimed books, and recently I read her latest one titled [b:Sisters|34496928|Sisters|Lily Tuck|https://s.gr-assets.com/assets/nophoto/book/50x75-a91bf249278a81aabab721ef782c4a74.png|55620015] which was really quite good and far more accessible than Matisse was. This rattling drivel was tiresome, and somewhat pretentious. Felt I was going nowhere fast and wasting my time. But other literary Tuck events await me. I have two additional novels sitting on my shelf. And my bet is they will be far better than this one, at one time, had promised to be.
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review 2017-04-10 06:14
Delicious desert mystery
The Last Camel Died at Noon - Elizabeth Peters

The Emerson's are off on another adventure, and this one is bound to leave you begging for more! Don't be deceived into thinking this one will not be as grand as the others. While we are not spending much of our time in Egypt, there is quite a bit that this book has to offer. Grab your book, a great beverage, and spend the day on the couch reading.

As they travel for their yearly digging expedition, they are bothered by the events that happened before they left England. Having a map brought to them, with the claim that their might be to British subjects still alive and held captive in distant land, there are questions that they have asked, but with no clear answers. As they begin to dig, they are beset by the nephew of the gentleman that visited them, who is determined to find and bring his parents back to England, if they are still alive. But when he vanishes into the desert, the Emerson's are forced to go after him and try and bring him back alive. Instead they are deserted by their servants, and as their camels die, they are left to face certain death in the desert. When Kemit, their last remaining loyal servant disappears, they are almost sure they will die quickly. But they are saved when he returns with men to help bring them back to a safe haven (or so it seems) and nursed back to health. In the days that follow, they understand that there is a struggle for power, and Kemit is really a prince. As they try to avoid intrigue and stay alive, it is hard to know who to trust and who to be wary of. Kemit, who is really Tarek, (name shortened and used as it is in the book), is being hunted by his brother who wants the crown for himself. As events unfold and the Emerson's are sure that they will be put to death, they are determined to help their friend Tarek as much as they can. But as always with the Emerson's, there are so many surprises and hilarious scenes that are bound to keep you begging for more, and crying when the book is finished.

I cannot recommend these books enough! They are some of the best that I have come across, and the character definition is something that is lost on many today. You will become intertwined into the lives of the Emerson family, and miss them as soon as you turn the last page.

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