Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Books I read in February

Jim bought me a t-shirt:

I read books like other people watch telly - as my main mindless leisure activity. I read with my breakfast, and with my tea; I read for hours on the sofa most evenings, and mornings and afternoons too if it's cold out. I read on trains (one of the factors that edges rail travel ahead of driving) and while waiting for trains; I read in the bath, and occasionally, in the small hours if I can't sleep, in bed.

I get nervous if I don't have at least a couple of unread books to hand; I feel lost without them. I read books from the library and from charity shops; from Amazon and from WHSmiths at various stations, when caught short; from Abe Books or ebay when I'm looking for something special. I will pick up a book after tea and be 150 pages in by bedtime; I will read two or even three books over a particularly wet weekend. The one time I don't read much is on holiday, because that's when I'm at my most active and most social and actually have least time to fill.

So, these are the books I read in February. I will add a new note to say what the source of each one was.

Paul Finch Strangers (local library)
Competent, credulity-stretching police 'thriller'.

Sharon Bolton Little Black Lies (local library)
Better than average, emotionally laden thriller in the unusual setting of the Falklands.

Lucie Whitehouse Keep You Close (local library)
Another emotionally involving twisty psychological thriller, nicely written.

Lin Anderson The Special Dead (local library)
Police mystery full of clunky exposition rather in the manner of Peter James. Whose tendency to write non-sentences like this is also emulated. A lot.

Laurie Graham The Night in Question (local library)
A lovely book, really enjoyable, engaging, funny and sad story set among music hall artistes at the time of Jack the Ripper, with some beautiful characters and settings.

Matthew Engel Engel's England (Jim's local library)
A county by county journey through the historic counties of England. Generally excellent, with lots of interesting facts and plenty of laugh out loud bits. Some of the chapters felt as if they'd been wrapped up a bit abruptly. Still, if they hadn't been, it might have turned into a very long book indeed.

Elly Griffiths The Woman in Blue (local library)
I like Griffiths' Ruth Galloway series - these are meaty mysteries, with engaging - even loveable - characters. This latest paperback didn't disappoint.

Andrew Michael Hurley The Loney (local library)
Billed as a creepy thriller/horror story, I found this to be an absorbing study of childhood and religion - with an air of approaching menace. I was really enjoying it, until the denuement, which I didn't understand, although I suspect there was an element of the supernatural, which rather spoiled the whole thing.

Eva Dolan After You Die (local library)
Better than average police procedural/detective mystery. Actually does keep you guessing, whilst giving the reader a fair chance at working it out.

Elly Griffiths Smoke and Mirrors (local library)
The second in a new series for Griffiths, set post-war and featuring a detective/illusionist partnership. Reminded me of Bryant and May, although not in their league - but enjoyable nonetheless.

Books I didn't read in February

Anna McPartlin Somewhere Inside of Happy (local library)
Sickmakingly saccharine Oirish family saga; I couldn't get past page 20. I should have known from the title.

1 comment:

  1. Perhaps I should do my own list. But I'd have to call it "The book I read (but not necessarily finished) this year!"

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