Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Two Years of Blogging

Today is the second anniversary of my first blog post.

After one year of blogging, I felt like I was settling in and accomplishing the goals I had set for myself in the blog. After two years, some of my goals have changed. I want to do fewer reading challenges and focus on specific goals, like more books written by authors from a variety of countries and occasionally dipping into other genres outside of mystery fiction.

In the last year of blogging, I have discovered new authors.

Naomi Hirahara is a new-to-me author whose books feature Mas Arai, a 69-year-old Japanese American gardener in the Los Angeles area. Mas Arai is a unique protagonist and the books provide a picture of a community and culture that I don't have much familiarity with. I just finished the first book in the series, Summer of the Big Bachi. Review coming soon.




I have also re-discovered authors I had not read in a long time. I read six books by Agatha Christie, three featuring Hercule Poirot, one starring Miss Marple, and two stand-alone novels.  

The Mystery of the Blue Train is a favorite. First of all, it features a train and many scenes on a train. I also like the variety of characters; the rich, the not so rich. Thieves and those who prey on the wealth of others.

Several people take the train to the Riviera, and one dies before journey's end. Hercule Poirot will be engaged to solve the murder.






I discovered that I enjoy cross-genre books that combine fantasy or science fiction with crime fiction. One example is Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch. I am eagerly awaiting the start of the Once Upon a Time Challenge in Spring 2014 so that I can read the next two books in the series, Moon Over Soho and Whispers Under Ground.


There are so many books and authors I want to read this year, and I know I will not get to all of them. I want to read more espionage fiction (Len Deighton, John Le Carré, Alan Furst, Dan Fesperman, Tom Gabbay, David Downing). I want to read books by Raymond Chandler, John D. MacDonald, and Ross MacDonald. And that list does not even scratch the surface.

I look forward to another year of blogging, enjoying more books and enjoying interacting with other bloggers and discovering new books and authors that they have read and reviewed.



40 comments:

  1. Tracy, many congratulations! It has been a pleasure knowing you through your blog that has introduced me to some wonderful fiction and the writers behind it. I wish you another great year of blogging.

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    1. Prashant, thanks for the good wishes. I enjoy your blog with its varied content, and I have learned of new authors to try from you too.

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  2. Tracy - well done. I always enjoy visiting here and picking up some new tips (not too many though!) Long may your blogging continue. I'm off now to look up Tom Gabbay!

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    1. Thanks, Col. I look to you for recommendations for the darker, grittier crime fiction that I might miss otherwise. Gabbay: I read the first of three books, and have the other two. Hope I like them as well.

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  3. I love your blog, Tracy! You do great reviews and I've found lots of good books here! Here's to many more years!

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    1. Thanks for the kind words, Peggy. I am starting my first book for Read Scotland tonight. Looking forward to it.

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  4. Tracy - Congratulations on two years of blogging! I learn every time I visit your blog, and I'm looking forward to more learning in the future! Well done!

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    1. Thanks to you, Margot, for providing me with so many suggestions for reading. I will never run out of new authors to try.

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  5. Congratulations on hanging in there! And for challenging yourself by testing uncharted waters (so to speak) in your reading. I Iiked Ben Aaronovitch's debut book, too.

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    1. Thanks, John. I will keep hanging in, for all the rewards that I get from blogging and learning from other bloggers.

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    1. Thanks, Carol. Two years goes by fast these days, probably because I am enjoying my reading and blogging.

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  7. Happy blogiversary! You've just reminded me that I probably should revisit Agatha Christie myself. She was a favorite of mine back in high school.

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    1. Anna, Christie is definitely worth revisiting. It took me a while; I thought I would have outgrown her stories, but I was so wrong.

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  8. Happy blog birthday. You're one of my favourites! I enjoyed The Mystery of the Blue Train recently too.

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    1. Thanks, Katrina. I enjoy visiting your blog, too, with your photos of Scotland and book reviews of all genres. I loved your last two posts. Your description of Mystery of the Blue Train is perfect and the post on Scottish Independence is just great.

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  9. I enjoyed reading about how you are subtly changing your focus and direction. I'm so glad you're blogging and I wish you many more anniversaries.
    Judith

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    1. Thank you, Judith. I appreciate your good wishes and look forward to years of blogging.

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  10. Congratulations on your two year blogoversary. ~cheers to many more~

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    1. Robin, thanks so much for the encouragement.

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  11. Happy 2 year-a-versary. I also enjoyed The Blue Train recently. For another sci-fi/mystery mash up you might want to check out the Peculiar Crimes Unit series by Christopher Fowler.

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    1. Mary R., thanks for the suggestion. I have read a few of the Peculiar Crimes Unit series and my son is very fond of it. He has read more in the series than I have. I will have to catch up.

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  12. Congratulations, Tracy! I enjoy visiting with you here and I enjoy your reviews a lot. You are influential and in my tiny circle of readers whose tastes I trust so I wish you many more years of blogging. Take care and congrats.

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    1. Thanks, Keishon. I have many of your suggestions on my list too. Still haven't gotten to Derek Raymond yet but later this year I will. You appreciate a wide range of crime fiction from Agatha Christie to the very noir.

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  13. Congratulations on two years of a great blog, Tracy and thanks for the reminder to read Rivers Of London. Look forward to many more excellent reviews in the future.

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    1. Thank you, Puzzle Doctor. I look forward to more years of writing the blog and more years of posts from you on classic puzzle mysteries. I hope you enjoy Rivers of London when you get to it.

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  14. Oh congratulations on the blogversary TracyK - you and I must have started our blogs around the same time, I hadn't realized that, mine was 2 just a month ago. I have very much enjoyed reading your blog and look forward to many more years of entries and great recommendations!

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    1. Thanks very much, Moira. I did see that you started your blog in the same general time frame as I did. Wish I had discovered your blog earlier, but now I am hooked on it.

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  15. Congratulations, Tracy, and good luck in the coming year. I enjoy your reviews a great deal even if I don't have time to comment as much as I'd like. Happy reading!

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    1. Thanks, Rebecca. I am looking forward to seeing what you read this year.

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    1. Thanks, Ryan. It was good to see your most recent reviews.

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  17. Congratulations on the first two years! I've got Rivers of London on my TBR list. I liked the genre-bending Full Dark House by Christopher Fowler, but never got back to read the others in the Peculiar Crimes Unit series that come after that first one.
    Summer of the Big Bachi sounds intriguing, too!

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    1. Thanks, Laurie. Rivers of London is a fun book. I have mixed feelings about the Peculiar Crimes Unit series but the location and the characters are so interesting, I plan to continue the series.

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  18. TracyK: It has been a busy week. I got sidetracked from joining in the congratulations. Two years of blogging is a significant accomplishment. Everyone has some ideas that can sustain a blog for awhile but it takes dedication to have completed two years and be looking forward to more blogging.

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    1. Thanks, Bill, I can sympathize with busy weeks. It does take dedication to keep up with a blog but blogging has added direction to my reading and I think I enjoy my reading more now, so it also gives me rewards. Plus meeting other bloggers and sharing thoughts on books.

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  19. Dear Tracy

    Congratulations. Love visiting your blog. Here's to more reading and more blogging.

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    1. Thanks, neer. I do look forward to more reading and blogging and visiting other blogs.

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  20. Happy Blog-o-versary! How wonderful for you and those who read this interesting blog. The only downside is the increasing titles to add to the TBR lists!

    It's always a pleasure to visit, read the post and then the comments.

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    1. Thanks so much, Kathy. I look forward to your comments because you often give me good advice on books.

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