Thursday, October 10, 2019

What Are You Reading?

Although I'm reading an excellent book, Jane Harper's The Lost Man, I want to tell you what I did yesterday, and what I'm going to be reading. I went to St. Louis with a friend and blogger, Kathy Boone Reel, who blogs at Deborah Crombie is on book tour for her latest Duncan Kincaid/Gemma James mystery, A Bitter Feast. We went to see her at The London Tea Room in St. Louis. Wonderful tea. Now, I'm looking forward to reading the book.

Deborah Crombie at The London Tea Room

With Deborah Crombie

So, what are reading this week? Anything good? Let us know, even if you didn't care for the book. We're always curious!


Jeff Meyerson said...

Nice. I read probably the first half dozen of Crombie's books before just slipping away from the series.

Rather than my usual genre reading, I read a couple of books that were both labeled "A Novel" by their publishers, though the first is by a writer who has certainly written mostly mysteries, and could be characterized as one. That was SARAH JANE by James Sallis, reviewed by you already. Sallis is always worth reading, and this one, about an enigmatic woman who meanders from soldier to cook to acting Sheriff, is no exception. Not my favorite of his books, but good.

A friend recommended Tom Rachman's first book (originally published nearly a decade ago), THE IMPERFECTIONISTS, a book I could have sworn I'd read. But I think I had the book from the library and had to return it at the time after reading just a little, so I zipped through it in a couple of quick sessions and I'm glad I do. It is really a collection of interconnected stories about the staff of an English language newspaper in Rome, as it approaches its end after half a century - the editor, stringers in Paris and Cairo, a devoted reader, etc. Very good and deserving of the praise it has received.

Currently, I'm reading the latest (#30, I believe) Joe Gunther mystery set in Vermont by Archer Mayor. I like the way each book in the series is set in a different area of the state.

Also reading THE BEST OF MANHUNT, a collection of stories from the 1950s from one of the best of the early digest magazines, with writers including Evan Hunter, Jack Ritchie, David Alexander, John D. MacDonald, Harold Q. Masur, Richard Prather, among others.

Sharon said...

This week I finished THE SISTERS OF SUMMIT AVENUE by Lynn Cullen. It was very good.
I really loved MIDNIGHT AT THE BLACKBIRD CAFE by Heather Webber.
Now I am enjoying MURDER IN THE LOCKED LIBRARY by Ellery Adams.
Happy Reading!

SandyG265 said...

I didn’t get much reading done this week. I finished an ARC of a short murder mystery, MURDER BY CHOCOLATE by Rosie A Point. It’s set in Maine and the primary character owns a traveling food truck.

I’m currently reading an ARC of MEOWS AND MISTLETOE. IT’s an anthology of paranormal Christmas stories set in Cats Paw Cove Florida.

Gram said...

Murder Cuts the Mustard - a Berly and Edwina mystery by Jessica Ellicot. Her two ladies of a certain age solve mysteries in post WW1 era series. Archie in the Crosshairs : a Nero Wolfe mystery by Robert Goldsborough..brings back memories of the original series. I started Mistress of the Ritz by Melanie Benjamin. I'm also inbetween all of these rereading the Bishop series by Kay Hooper to get ready for the new one in 2020.

Jane R said...

I just finished reading Deborah Crombie's, A Bitter Feast. I thoroughly enjoy this series and her latest book is great. This time the story takes Kinkaid and Gemma and their three children out of London. As always, it is a good mystery with stellar characters. Crombie's writing is fabulous and I can't recommend this series enough.

Kay said...

Lesa, that's a great picture of you two and I know you enjoyed the event. I've already read the book and loved it. That being said, I love all the books in Deb Crombie's series. Duncan, Gemma and all the other characters are some of my very favorites. Enjoy!

Sharon said...

Gram, I will be interested if you enjoy MURDER CUTS THE MUSTARD. I opted to not read it, as the last one about pigeons was very slow.

Margie Bunting said...

In Stephen King's new book, THE INSTITUTE, children with telepathic and telekinetic skills are being kidnapped and imprisoned in The Institute, where their skills are honed through increasingly cruel experiments for nefarious purposes. But they also receive perks such as rooms that mirror their rooms at home, free cigarettes and alcohol. Of necessity, the children befriend each other in mutual support and commiseration. One 12-year-old, Luke, is the focus of the story. A child prodigy academically, he catches on fairly quickly to The Institute's real objective and what is going on in the "Back Half," to which children are transferred and subsequently disappear. Is it possible for Luke to escape, and to help his newfound friends? This is not a "horror" book per se, and it is outside of my usual reading fare--I read it for a "creepy" themed book club meeting. I found it to be a fantastic story and barreled through all 555 pages in three days.

In Spencer Quinn's latest, HEART OF BARKNESS, PI Bernie Little is just out of the hospital after a serious injury, but he and his sidekick/dog, Chet, are soon involved in a new case. This one involves veteran country singer Lotty Pilgrim, her estranged family, and mysterious long-ago events. When Lotty plans to plead guilty of the murder of her manager and live-in lover, Bernie and Chet intervene to find out the real truth. The charm of this series is the dog's amusing narration.

Sisters Edith and Helen became estranged when the latter convinced their dying father to leave all his money to her so she could build a successful light brewery, in J. Ryan Stradal's THE LAGER QUEEN OF MINNESOTA. But Edith may have lived the happier life with simpler tastes, baking award-winning pies and thereby bringing fame to the nursing home where she worked. She also took in her granddaughter, Diana, when her parents were killed in a car accident. Both Edith and Diana struggled for enough money to support them and fulfill Diana's dream of college, but Diana found that she was more interested in craft beers herself, taking a menial job at a local brewery and later crafting her own beer recipes. How Helen, Edith and Diana come together in the end is a long and interesting journey.

Charlotte said...

Lesa, love the name of the shop you attended yesterday. Sounds like my cup of tea. So glad you were able to go with your friend. Nice day to enjoy the fall season. You always look good in your pictures. I stay away from having my picture taken.
Thank you for sharing your visit with us.

Lesa said...

Good morning! Thank you for the compliments.

And, as always, thank you for sharing the books you're reading. Interesting, Jeff. I loved Sarah Jane, but I had never read any of Sallis' earlier books, so I had nothing to compare it to. Right now, it's on my list of best books read this year.

Sharon, Someone else recommended The Sisters of Summit Avenue as well. I never remember if someone talked about it here, or if it was someone at work who suggested it.

Sandy, We all have those weeks when we're too busy to get much read, or no book grabs us. I hope you still had a good week!

Kay, I actually have it scheduled for my blog later this month for a blog tour. So, I'll read it the weekend before. Good to know you enjoyed it!

Margie, I totally agree with you. I haven't read the last couple Chet and Bernie books, but Chet's voice is so wonderful!

Charlotte, It was a nice day! It was also a lovely tea room. The manager is British, and she listens to books on tape, including Deborah's, while she bakes. So she was really excited that they were hosting Deborah Crombie.

Mark Baker said...

Should be finishing up WICKED HARVEST by Karen MacInerney. This is in her Dewberry Farm series set in Texas. It’s fun, but it has a few editing issues that should have been fixed before it was released, which her books always do. Fortunately, they appear to be minor, except for the chapter that showed up out of order.

Kaye Wilkinson Barley - Meanderings and Muses said...

You're going to love it! I have been a fan of Deborah's and this series for a long time, and this truly is one of her best. I love that you and Kathy went to see her and had such a great time.

I recently finished Natasha Lester's "Paris Orphan." Very good!!


Lesa said...

Ouch. That's not good, Mark, when you say her books always have some editing issues.

Lesa said...

I'm looking forward to reading it, Kaye!

Always good to know which Paris books you like.


Glen Davis said...

Been really busy, so not a lot of reading time.

I read Fab: The Fifth Angel, an allo-historical work about a fugitive John Lennon.

Catalina's Riddle by Stephen Sayler; I liked SPQR, so I tried a similar work. Not bad, but I like SPQR's sly humor better.

Lesa said...

Thanks for stopping & sharing what you're reading, Glen, even though you've been busy. I would have worried about you.