Sunday, June 7, 2020

Bookshelf Traveling for Insane Times No. 12

I am participating in the Bookshelf Traveling For Insane Times meme, hosted by Judith at Reader in the Wilderness.

This week I am returning to my husband's bookshelves in the glass-front bookcase. This image shows two series that he reads. If you click on the image of the shelf, you will be able to read more of the titles.

Starting from the left...
The Jack Yu series by Henry Chang:

This series features American-born Jack Yu, who is one of only a few Chinese officers in the NYPD. In the first book in the series, Chinatown Beat, Jack Yu is assigned to the Chinatown precinct. In the second book, he has been transferred to another precinct,which he prefers because he has too many personal ties in Chinatown. But, with his background, he ends up getting involved with cases in Chinatown anyway.

See my reviews of Chinatown Beat and Year of the Dog.

Those are the only two books I have read in the series. My husband has read all five books.

Here is Glen's review of the 4th book, Death Money at Goodreads:
It's been a few years since Henry Chang has published a NYPD Detective Jack Yu procedural and this, the 4th, is a welcome return. Here, Yu is assigned (seemingly based on ethnicity alone) to investigate the death of an unidentified young Asian man found in the Harlem River. Just like a solo private eye (this book reads like a noirish private eye thriller), Yu is basically on his own (he has no partner and calls on only minimal police assistance) as he searches for the identities of killer and victim. There's no pyrotechnics or strong action here, just methodical, well-plotted police work with strong characters (especially Billy - Yu's good friend, tofu shop owner. and sort of loose cannon).

The series on the right is Parnell Hall's Stanley Hastings series. Glen has two reviews on Goodreads that give a good picture of the series so I am including those:

Glen's review of Murder, #2 in the series, at Goodreads:
This second volume in Parnell Hall's Stanley Hastings detective series is every bit as good as the stellar original. With a witty, self-deprecating protagonist (who, amazingly, has a home life and is personally undamaged) and an intricate clockwork plot (although the ending does feel a bit rushed) you really can't ask for a more entertaining read. Since I came late to this long-running series I anticipate more reading pleasure ahead.

Glen's review of Favor, #3 in the series at Goodreads:
Stanley Hastings is a lowly-paid leg man for an ambulance chasing lawyer, a wannabe sort of private eye and writer, a self-deprecating and loving family man. In this, the third of Parnell Hall's series, we find Stanley off to Atlantic City to do a quick favor for someone who's not really even a friend. Before too long, he finds himself charged with grand larceny (the way he tries to get out of that is elegant) and in the frame for two murders. The characters are all sharply drawn, the pace is swift, the plot is complex in a good way, and there is a light tone throughout. There are nearly 20 in the series and I can't wait to get to the next one.
My husband has read eight of the twenty books in the series and liked them all. I have only read the first one and I should read the second one soon.


Rick Robinson said...

Hmm. I think Parnell is a funny, personable guy, but I tried a book in each of his series and was unimpressed. I either have some on the shelf to go to the library used book store, or they have already gone. I sure wish they would open back up, I have bags of stuff to go. I should check w/you to see if there's anything you want, all of them are new or once-carefully read.

I'm not familiar with the other series, but it sounds interesting. And... William C. Gordon?

TracyK said...

Rick, I don't know that much about William C. Gordon. He writes noir mysteries set in San Francisco in the 1960's and my husband liked the first two books in the series a lot. The books were first published in Spanish, starting in 2006, and were not published in the US until 2011. I have not tried one of them yet.

I know what you mean about donating books. We have several stacks sitting around with nowhere to go.

Cath said...

I don't know either of these authors but the Jack Yu series would be the one that interests me with its New York Chinatown setting.

I know what you and Rick mean about donating too. I've been reading primarily from my own tbr piles since March and don't want to keep them all so the charity shop box is almost full. Ordinarily I would've whipped them along to one of the charity shops by now but of course they're not open. Pretty soon I'm going to need a new box. Of course what we really need is a Star Trek type transporter so I can send you a box of books and vice versa!

Margot Kinberg said...

I'm glad to see the Jack Yu series, Tracy. I think it's well done, and I don't think it gets the attention it deserves.

TracyK said...

Cath, the New York Chinatown setting is very interesting, in this series and a couple of others I have read. I have also read one book set in Chinatown in San Francisco in the 1940's (City of Dragons, Kelli Stanley).

We usually donate our books to the Planned Parenthood book sale, and I think we may try going by there soon and seeing if they are accepting books now.

TracyK said...

Margot, I agree that the Jack Yu series should get more attention. And I need to read the next book of series.

col2910 said...

Nice looking shelf. I tried the Parnell Hall series and really enjoyed the first one. Haven't re-visited it yet, I think I have a later book in the series. I haven't tried Henry Chang or William C. Gordon yet..... just too many books and not enough time.

TracyK said...

Col, I haven't read the 2nd Stanley Hastings book either, but hope to soonish. Glen recently read the first book in a series that Hall wrote as J.P. Hailey, with an attorney as the protagonist. He liked that one a lot too, and has purchased the second in that series.

I think you will like the series by Henry Chang when you have time to read one. I have read two, and want to read all of them.