Thursday, February 28, 2013

Deborah Crombie Marathon

I am thrilled to report that I have finished reading through Deb Crombie's entire series, except for The Sound of Broken Glass, which released last week.

I hope you'll do the same. I had read one or two of her books in the past. But with a long series - and this one started in 1996 with A Share in Death - it's really worth it to read it start to finish. You see how the characters develop over time, you experience how the author deals with loss and love and deepening relationships. Most of all, you totally fall in love with Scotland Yard officers Gemma James and Duncan Kinkaid, and with London through Crombie's eyes.

While Crombie lives in Texas, she has said that she always felt like she should have been British. She travels to England and other parts of Great Britain every year and has lived there in the past. When you read her writing, she certainly sounds British. She gets the dialect, both in dialog and in how observations about life are expressed. She makes you feel like you are walking the streets of Notting Hill or shopping at the Columbia Road flower market. Here she is on her recent US book tour with an actual Brit, her fellow blogger Rhys Bowen, whose Molly Murphy series I love and want to enact a marathon on, too!

Crombie is one of the regular bloggers over at Jungle Red Writers where I drop in first thing every morning and often leave a comment. I was really excited recently to hear that my randomly selected comment made me the winner of a copy of  The Sound of Broken Glass. I can't wait to get it, except that I know after I finish reading it, I'll have a year or more to wait for the next one. As a writer myself, I know how long it takes to finish writing an entire book, and how hard it is. But as a reader, and a fast reader, I'm appalled at how quickly I can finish reading a work that took so long to produce!

I did a couple of series marathons before, with Julia Spencer-Fleming (also a Jungle Reds blogger) and Louise Penny, but now I'm reduced to eagerly waiting for their next book.

And right now, as before, I'm in withdrawal. Sure, I have other books to read, and am greatly enjoying Toni L. P. Kelner's Blast from the Past, with Wicked Eddies by Beth Groundwater and One Hot Murder by Lorraine Bartlett queued up behind. But what I really want is The Sound of Breaking Glass!

What series have you read start to finish? Do you think a series marathon is a good idea, or would you rather read the books as they come out, one per year (or so)? Which stand alone novel did you wish would become a series?

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Knee Rehab Reading - Part Two

My knee-replacement reading binge continues!

Buried in a Bog by Sheila Connolly is a delightful start to her new series. She evokes village County Cork so beautifully I felt I was there in the rainy green hills hearing the locals speak, tasting the Guiness in the pub, and seeing her American protagonist find out she was related to just about everybody in the tiny town of Leap. I couldn't put the book down right through to the surprising end.

August Moon by Jess Lourey continues her Murder by the Month series. I'm behind, as the December book is already out, but August Moon did not disappoint with another funny mystery solved by Mira James in small-town Battle Lake, Minnesota.

Mourn Not Your Dead brought me along in my project to catch up on Deborah Crombie's fantastic Duncan Kincaid/Gemma James series. 

SW Hubbard has been off the publishing radar for a few years, but her new book, Another Man's Treasure, was worth the wait. In Audrey Nealon's hunt for the story behind her disappeared mother's ring, she uncovers more intrigue and danger than she bargained for. The characters are well drawn and the story keeps twisting all the way through.

Polly Iyer's Murder Deja Vu is an intriguing thriller with twice-falsely accused Reese and his new love Dana tracking down the real killer in the first case as well as in the new copycat murder.

Next up? Julie's Hyzy's latest in the Presidential chef series, Fonduing Fathers.