It’s Bingo Time! Last year, as prompted by Cleo, from the Cleopatra Loves Books blog, I had a go at Reading Bingo, a game to help highlight some of my reviews from the past year. It’s not my review of the year – that’ll be along on December 31st. I almost typed “obviously” at the end of that sentence but a lot of reviews turn up before then. Not me though…
Back to the Bingo – basically, the Bingo card has twenty five categories – all I have to do is find a book that I’ve reviewed over the past year for each category. Simple…
A Book With More Than 500 Pages
As the Knights Templar series progresses, the books seem to be getting longer. The outstanding Death Ship Of Dartmouth by Michael Jecks clocks in at 512 pages although it does seem to just fly by. A must read entry in a must read series.
A Forgotten Classic
Let’s go for the wonderfully titled Vegetable Duck by John Rhode – and if the Rhode estate is reading this, please let somebody (e.g. Curtis Evans) re-release the Rhode and Burton books as ebooks. They really are a cut above a number of the other lost authors currently being lauded.
A Book That Became A Movie
The Girl On The Train with its “jaw-dropping twist”. By the way, dear reader, if you think that was a twist, then please read something decent – anything by Agatha Christie for example…
A Book Published This Year
Tastes Like Fear by Sarah Hilary, the third in the engrossing Marnie Rome series. Looking forward to Book Four early next year.
A Book With A Number In The Title
The Four Armourers by Francis Beeding – utter rubbish, but it does have a number in the title…
A Book Written By Someone Under Thirty
John Dickson Carr (as Carter Dickson) managed to produce The Unicorn Murders just before hitting the big 3-0.
A Book With Non-Human Characters
Well, there’s plenty of ghosties, ghoulies and long-legged beasties roaming London in Who Killed Sherlock Holmes? by Paul Cornell, probably the best so far in the Shadow Police series.
A Funny Book
Case For Three Detectives by Leo Bruce, a pastiche of Poirot, Wimsey and Brown that, while it gets a little bitchy at times, certainly puts a smile on the reader’s face.
A Book By A Female Author
I have to flag up A High Mortality Of Doves, the outstanding post-WWI mystery from Kate Ellis, that kicks the competition into the dust. A competitor for Book of the Year.
A Book With A Mystery
Rather more challenging to find a book without a mystery – there is one, Fields Of Glory by Michael Jecks. But I’ll pick one at random (literally – I used a random number generator) and got Death Of A Busybody by George Bellairs, one of the British Library re-issues.
A Book With A One-Word Title
Only one book this year falls into this category, a much-overlooked thriller. Painkiller by N J Fountain is a twist-filled thriller, so much more involving and complex than any book about a “Girl”. The paperback is out on 29 December this year – don’t miss it!
A Book Of Short Stories
Serpents In Eden edited by Martin Edwards from the British Library, a set of tales set in the English Countryside.
Let’s put Dead Pretty by David Mark in this slot. Book five in a series that goes from strength to strength (and started pretty strongly anyway).
A Book Set On A Different Continent
Nothing outside of Europe or North America, so I’ll go for Death At The Boston Tea Party by Deryn Lake, as it’s a trip to the North American colonies for a series usually based in Georgian England.
A Book Of Non-Fiction.
Certain parts of A Death Of A Red King by Paul Doherty were certainly presented as an academic case, despite being dressed in a fictional tale.
The First Book By A Favourite Author
The not-so-great It Walks By Night by the great John Dickson Carr.
A Book You Heard About Online
Um, most of the them. But I’ll go for Dark Serpent by Paul Doherty as I first heard about it when he emailed me asking if he could dedicate it to me! (Obviously, I said yes…)
A Best-Selling Book
Um, what counts as best-selling? No idea. But pretty sure The Steel Kiss by Jeffrey Deaver would count.
A Book Based On A True Story
The well-researched and never dull Dancing For The Hangman by Martin Edwards, the tale of Dr Crippen.
A Book At The Bottom Of Your TBR Pile
I wasn’t in a rush to read Come Death And High Water by Ann Cleeves that I bought as a kindle bargain, but read it on the train on the way to hear her give a talk. Glad I did too…
A Book Your Friend Loves
Well, let’s go for Death Invites You by Paul Halter, as JJ from The Invisible Event loves that one (as did I).
A Book That Scares You
OK, I know I’ve used The Girl On The Train already, but the popularity of this book scares me. Yes, the characters are interesting but the plot is hackneyed old nonsense and the notion that the obvious suspect isn’t the murderer ISN’T A TWIST! If you want a decent twist, go and read Sharon Bolton or Mark Billingham or any other author who doesn’t hang their entire plot on one point…
A Book That Is More Than 10 Years Old
Again – duh. Let’s take the physics-defying Death On The Riviera by John Bude, from 1952.
The Second Book In A Series
Closed Casket, the second book featuring fake-Poirot by Sophie Hannah (although admittedly, fake-Poirot is doing a better Poirot impression this time round)>
A Book With A Blue Cover
So, for the full house, I’ll go for the Detection Club’s The Sinking Admiral. A fun book, especially THAT chapter…
So, that’s bingo out the way – two years, two full houses. Let’s go for the hat-trick.