Sunday, May 29, 2016

20 Books of Summer 2016


I first learned of this challenge at A Crime is Afoot, then saw lists at Cleopatra Loves Books and findingtimetowrite. Then I was reminded today by Keishon's post at Yet Another Crime Fiction Blog. She hasn't put up a list yet, and I look forward to seeing it.

The challenge is to read 20 Books in Summer; it begins on June 1 and goes through September 5th. The originator is Cathy at 746 Books. Visit there for more information. She does also suggest 15 book or 10 book versions for those who don't want to commit to 20.

I resisted at first because it is a challenge and I haven't done so well at those lately, but I do like the ones with a shorter span of time. I already knew of seven books that I planned to read ASAP and thought, why not add others I have been wanting to read soon, and see what happens?




So, here is my list:


  • The Seven Dials Mystery by Agatha Christie (1929)
  • Passing by Nella Larsen (1929)
  • Some Buried Caesar by Rex Stout (1939)
  • Murder Among Friends by Elizabeth Ferrars (1946)
  • She Shall Have Murder by Delano Ames (1948)
  • Murder Begins at Home by Delano Ames (1949)
  • Vertigo by Boileau-Narcejac (orig. publ. as D'entre les morts in 1954)
  • From Russia with Love by Ian Fleming (1957)
  • The Manchurian Candidate by Richard Condon (1959)
  • Smiley's People by John le Carré  (1979)
  • The Black Company by Glen Cook (1984)
  • A Perfect Spy by John le Carré  (1986)
  • Mort by Terry Pratchett (1987)
  • Grifters & Swindlers ed. by Cynthia Mason (short story anthology, 1993)
  • Jar City by Arnaldur Indriðason (2000)
  • An American Spy by Olen Steinhauer (2012)
  • Dead Lions by Mick Herron (2013)
  • Murder and Other Unnatural Disasters by Lida Sideris (2015)
  • See Also Deception by Larry D. Sweazy (2016)
  • Shot in Detroit by Patricia Abbott (2016)


I know that I will want to add a book in July and August for Crimes of the Century at Past Offences, but otherwise I hope to stay on track.

At this point, if I succeed, this will remove 15 books from my TBR shelves, boxes, and stacks. That will be good as I move toward the big book sale in September that always adds many more books to the shelves.

Note that on the cover of Murder Begins at Home above, many of the tiny white flowers have skulls in them. Moira at Clothes in Books graciously sent me this edition to add to my collection of book covers adorned with skulls.




24 comments:

  1. Good luck! I know I will not make 20 books over those 3 months. You have fine reading ahead. I have read 5 of the books.

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    1. Thanks, Bill. In the last 5 months, I think I have averaged about 6 books a month, so it will be a stretch for me too. I will try though.

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  2. A few there I wouldn't mind reading, as well as one I already am! Two on your list I have read and six others are on the pile!

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    1. Col, I could probably guess at the ones that you have on your pile. I am so glad I saw See Also Deception at your blog. I am buying it on June 1st.

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  3. You've got a great reading list there, Tracy! I hope you'll really enjoy them, and I respect you for taking on the challenge.

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    1. I am looking forward to all these books, Margot. It will be a miracle if I get all these read in the three months (plus do blog posts and work), but it is worth aiming at.

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  4. I think I might join in with that 20 Books in Summer Challenge too. I enjoyed the Elizabeth Ferrars book and also like Delano Ames although I haven't read either of those ones. I didn't realise his books had been reprinted, mine are very old.

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    1. It seems like a good challenge, Katrina, and I made sure I picked books I want to read so hopefully I won't stray from the list.

      Re Delano Ames, most of my copies are old books too. I think Rue Morgue reprinted the first three of them.

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  5. Looks like a great list Tracy - and I really, really want to try Delano Ames - always hear nice things, never seem to come across a copy in a local bookstore though :)

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    1. I have read Delano Ames before, Sergio, but long ago. I hope I like the books as well now as I did then. I agree, they don't show up at stores or book sales ... I assume I got all the copies I have of older copies online.

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  6. What a great challenge idea. You have some great titles on your list. You've motivated me! I think I will sort through my TBR stack and come up with my own list for the summer. Thanks for the posting!
    All the best from the U.S. Gulf coast and Past Perfect Murders.
    Tim
    http://pastperfectmurders.blogspot.com/

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    1. Hi, R.T. I am sure you have some great reading planned for the summer. I have visited the Gulf Coast in Mississippi and Florida in my youth.

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  7. Margot, this challenge doesn't apply to me as I'll be wading through four months of rains June through September! I see some good books in your list. I'm particularly curious about Larry D. Sweazy's "See Also Deception" and Patti's "Shot in Detroit." Good luck!

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    1. Prashant, Sorry about the rains in the coming months. I spent 4 plus years in Tuscaloosa, AL and every winter we had torrential rains and we called them monsoons. But I am sure that they are nothing to compare to your rains that coming.

      I am going to buy See Also Deception very, very soon. And Shot in Detroit will be out soon too. I am looking forward to both.

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    2. Tracy, my apologies for referring to you as "Margot." I was visiting a few blogs, including yours and Margot's, at the same time.

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    3. No problem, Prashant. That happens to me, too.

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  8. I joined #20BooksOfSummer too! I was apprehensive....but
    why not? I just copied your reading list for future reference. You have some great books planned. I put CF on my list along with 3 in French (Quebec noir, Swiss and French). Have to keep up my reading skills in FR and CF is so relaxing!

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    1. Nancy, I did see all the crime fiction on your list, and you are so brilliant to read them in French. I posted a Classics list in May and you were a major inspiration that got me started, although most of my choices are pretty easy reads.

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  9. I've only read a few of these, so I have to get cracking - reading-wise. I adore Delano Ames' books. Relatively easy to find online, but a couple of them are just too expensive. Still, I've read all the cheap ones. HA! Jane and Dagobert Brown are just too much.

    And love Agatha Christie as well, I mean, who doesn't?

    I love the movie of THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE (the orig. movie with Lawrence Harvey and Frank Sinatra) but I'd forgotten there was a book. I think I'll read it this summer.

    I don't accept Challenges. I'd like to, but when I do, I find myself disliking the pressure. Hey, I'm old. Pressure is no good for us old codgers. HA!

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    1. Yvette, I totally agree about avoiding pressure. Stress at work is impacting me, you would think I would calm down about it at my age. So can't add stress about reading to that.

      I am looking forward to the Delano Ames' books after all these years. I was trying to read an Agatha Christie a month, but it has been a while. I love the movie version of THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE also, I think the book may be different but eager to see.

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  10. Hi Tracy, I'm a bit late but so glad you're in the challenge! I'm a coward. I can't post a list because I don't have one. I'm just gonna wing it.

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    1. I did see that you were not going to do a list, Keishon. I will be surprised by which books you pick as you write about them. Unfortunately I have not even started yet because it is taking me so long to read THE HONOURABLE SCHOOLBOY, but it is very good so that is fine.

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  11. Good for you, and what a great list! I took a quick look and thought that cover looked familiar, and then realized why...

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    1. Yes, that is a wonderful cover, Moira, and I look forward to reading both of the Delano Ames books soon. My only regret with this list is I should have included at least one more James Bond book because I wanted to read one a month.

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