Sunday, December 3, 2017

Reading in November 2017

In November I read nine books; only six of them were crime fiction. In the non-crime related group, we have:

The 13 Clocks (1950) by James Thurber

This book is sort of a fairy tale, but not really. I don't think it was written for children specifically but I am sure that it has been read to many children. I am also sure I will be reading this again a couple of times before I try to write about it.

The best way to introduce this book is with a quote from the beginning paragraph:
Once upon a time, in a gloomy castle on a lonely hill, where there were thirteen clocks that wouldn't go, there lived a cold, aggressive Duke, and his niece, the Princess Saralinda. She was warm in every wind and weather, but he was always cold. His hands were as cold as his smile and almost as cold as his heart.
I am grateful to Joan at Planet Joan for sending me her copy of this book after she read it.

Northanger Abbey (1818) by Jane Austen

This was my fourth book by Jane Austen this year, which I read as a part of the Jane Austen Read All A-Long at James Reads Books. My thoughts on the book are HERE.

Doomsday Book (1992)  by Connie Willis

The first novel in the Oxford Time Travel series. I have been wanting to read this book for a while and was determined to read it before I get to Black Out and All Clear by the same author. Now that I have read this book, I will read To Say Nothing of the Dog before the other two books.

The events are set at Christmas; thus I read it in preparation for the Christmas season. I loved it.

And these are the crime fiction books I read in November, which spanned the years from 1944 to 2017.

A Patient Fury (2017) by Sarah Ward
This is the third DC Childs mystery, written by Sarah Ward.  The series is set in the Derbyshire Peak District where the author lives. I have been a fan of the series since it started and this book did not disappoint. One of my favorite reads this year. My thoughts are HERE.
Death Wears Pink Shoes (1952) by Robert James
This book is difficult to describe and I hope to do better in a later post. The events center around a motley group of tenants at No. 17 Crane Street in New York. The story and the way it is told reminds me of the Inspector Schmidt books by George Bagby. It was a very fun read.
Moira at Clothes in Books generously sent this book to me, since she knows my love for books with skeletons on the cover.
Banking on Death (1961) by Emma Lathen
This is the first in a series starring John Putnam Thatcher, senior vice president of Sloan Guaranty Trust. I have been rereading books from this series of 24 books and have enjoyed each one. This one is covered in my most recent post.
Feast of Murder (1992) by Jane Haddam
The cover of this book says this is a Gregor Demarkian Holiday Mystery. The story is set around Thanksgiving and involves a holiday cruise on a replica of the Mayflower. Later the series (now 29 books long) moves away from the holiday themes and takes on darker topics. I enjoyed this book, another reread. My thoughts on this book and the series are HERE.

The Clock Strikes Twelve (1944) by Patricia Wentworth
The 7th book in the Miss Maud Silver series. James Paradine, the patriarch of the Paradine family, announces at a family dinner on New Year's Eve that he knows that one of his guests has betrayed the interests of the family. He also states that he will wait in his office until midnight to meet with the guilty person and discuss terms for handling the betrayal. Of course, by 12 o'clock he is dead. Just about everyone in the family is considered a suspect, some more than others, and one of the heirs brings in Miss Silver to clear things up.
This was the first Miss Silver book I had read in years and I think it was a very good book to get back into the series with. I found it very entertaining.

These Bones Were Made for Dancin' (1995) by Annette Meyers
This was the second book by Annette Meyers I read this year, and I like this one much more than the first one. Previously I read The Big Killing, the 1st book in the Smith and Wetzon series  This month I skipped ahead to the 6th book in the series. Leslie Smith and Xenia Wetzon are headhunters on Wall Street. Smith was a dancer on Broadway many years back, and she and a friend are producing a revival of a show for charity. The skeleton of a woman is discovered in the basement of a brownstone, and it may be the remains of one of the dancers from the original show.


Cath said...

I have To Say Nothing of the Dog on my tbr pile too. I want to get to that early next year as I'm told it's really good.

I love that two of the crime books you read have dancing skeletons on the cover. LOL!

joan.kyler said...

I'm glad to have found a new home for The 13 Clocks. It is a strange little book, but I liked the illustrations.
What a nice list of good mysteries! I see several that I'd like to read.

Bernadette said...

I enjoyed A PATIENT FURY very much too. I haven't read any of your others though if I were judging purely by covers I would go for DEATH WARES PINK SHOES...seems like a fun cover to go with fun book

Anonymous said...

That Annette Meyers cover looks just your sort of cover, Tracy. And I'm glad you had a good reading month. I couldn't agree more, by the way, about Sarah ward's work. She's really talented, isn't she? I look forward to whatever she has coming up next.

TracyK said...

Looks like we will be reading To Say Nothing of the Dog at about the same time, Cath. And it is a good month when I have two books with skeletons. The dancing is a bonus.

TracyK said...

I agree, 13 Clocks is a strange book, Joan. I was delighted to read it and I always like illustrated books.

TracyK said...

I did read a lot of fun books this month, Bernadette. Probably related to mostly holiday reads. Sarah's book was not so fun but very, very good.

TracyK said...

I am also looking forward to Sarah's next book, Margot. I have had the Annette Meyer book for a while and am glad I finally read it.

Susan D said...

I gobble up Connie Willis's time traveller books, and have reread them multiple times, because there's so much that might escape your notice the first (or second) time through. Wonderful stuff. Must get back to the Doomsday Book again.

But wait, there's another story to add to your prep work before plunging into Blackout/All Clear. If you haven't already, check out Fire Watch, the short story that started it all, at the Oxford Time Travel Guide.

Colin is such a hero.

TracyK said...

Thanks for the encouragement, Susan. I always need a push to read longer books. I can definitely see myself rereading Doomsday Book.

And thanks for pointing me to Fire Watch. I had heard of that but did not know much about it or where to get it. I will definitely check that out.

Anonymous said...

I became a big, big fan of Connie Willis after reading BELLWETHER earlier this year. I loved the book and thought it funny. I have THE DOOMSDAY BOOK tbr. I also have a bunch of Patricia Wentworth books so good to know the Ms. Silver series is worth reading still. Sounds like Sarah has hit the ground running with her series. Good for her. --Keishon

TracyK said...

Keishon, I will have to look into Bellwether, after I finish the Time Travel books. I do have more Miss Silver books to try also. Hope they are as good as The Clock Strikes Twelve.

col2910 said...

Seems like you had a great reading month. Not read anything by any of these authors, though I have a Wentworth somewhere, bought more in hope than expectation of reading her. The Ronert James seems the most intriguing, though I'd avoid it if it was a ghost story.

TracyK said...

It was a very good month, Col. Lots of books (although not as many as you read). You probably won't be too thrilled with a Wentworth book, although one can never tell. Nor the Robert James, but it is not ghostly at all.

Clothes In Books said...

Great collection Tracy - I either have read them, or would love to read them. I read Annette Meyers back in the day, and could fancy either re-reading or trying a different one. This one sounds good, and doesn't sound familiar, though goodness knows what I read back in the 80s/90s.

TracyK said...

Moira, in addition to Death Wears Pink Shoes, I also found out about The Clock Strikes Twelve by Patricia Wentworth at Clothes in Books. Liked it a lot and now eager to read more Miss Silver books. (As you probably know, she is not new to me but it has been a long time.)

I did enjoy the Annette Meyers book but there are a few elements that bother me so don't know how many more I will read.