Friday, 1 February 2019

Books I read in January

Back by popular demand (mine, because it fills a page), here is the first of 2019's monthly rundowns of my not-so-elevated reading habits:

Christobel Kent The Dead Season (local library)
I discovered Christobel Kent by accident when trawling the library (I found The Day She Disappeared) and found that what looked like a run of the mill women's thriller (because that is a thing, I think) was actually very well-written and engaging, with a good plot and plenty of suspense. So I got onto the Sheffield libraries website and tracked down as many as I could (because Sheffield Council, excellently, doesn't charge you to reserve books and have them delivered to your local library). The Dead Season is one of a series about an ex-police, private detective, in Florence. Yes, I know I don't usually do foreign-set stories, but the strength of the writing carried me through, and I have to admit the atmosphere of a stifling Florentine summer was excellent.

Jim Kelly Death's Door (local library)
I'd read Kelly's stories about journalist detective Philip Dryden, but hadn't come across his policemen, Shaw and Valentine. It might take a couple of books for the characters to develop fully three dimensionally, but the plot was good.

Christobel Kent The Killing Room (local library)
Another Sandro Cellini story. Again, good plot and writing, and the characters starting to really take shape.

Christobel Kent The Loving Husband (local library)
Good plot and characters, lots of suspense, another winner.

Christobel Kent What We Did (Kindle)
I downloaded this one to take to Southampton, because my one remaining unread library book was a large print hardback. This was less gripping, being not so much a whodunnit (or even a whydunnit) but a wedunnit (and are we going to get away with it).

Christobel Kent The Crooked House (local library)
Good characters, atmosphere and suspense, great writing and observation, but a plot that left me wondering why. Maybe the sort of book you have to read twice.

Sabine Durrant Take Me In (Tesco's)
Frustrating story of annoying people who do idiotic things because of pointless guilt, with a very unsatisfying ending which does nothing to resolve the main question and only reason for reading to the end. Nice detail of PR work though.

Patricia Gibney The Stolen Girls (local library)
Irish-set police thriller, average to OK, but with some leaden dialogue and excruciating prose in places.
 

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