Well, August is well and truly over, so there goes the summer. As the start of a new school term beckons – hurrah! – it’s time to look over the past month’s reading. An odd month, with seventeen books, but also with two weeks – one at the start and one at the end – with basically one review each. The first week was due to reading an additional book that I delayed the review of to coincide with publication, the second was due to basically struggling to get on with an author’s sense of humour. Still, seventeen books means plenty to choose from for the Puzzly for August 2017. Let’s go…
So, the books in question were:
- The Prophecy Of Death by Michael Jecks
- The Madman’s Room by Paul Halter
- The Price Of Silence by Dolores Gordon-Smith
- The Moai Island Puzzle by Alice Arisugawa
- Mr Splitfoot by Helen McCloy
- The Mermaid’s Scream by Kate Ellis
- The Norwich Victims by Francis Beeding
- The Chalice Of Blood by Peter Tremayne
- Death Takes The Living by Miles Burton
- The Crime Coast by Elizabeth Gill
- Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz
- The Secret Hangman by Peter Lovesey
- Where Old Bones Lie by Ann Granger
- The Word Is Murder by Anthony Horowitz
- The Sharp Quillet by Brian Flynn
- The Mansions Of Murder by Paul Doherty
- Quick Curtain by Alan Melville
So… plenty of quality there, along with a few disappointments. Books that I’d heard good things about – The Moai Island Puzzle, Mr Splitfoot and Quick Curtain – fell a bit flat. Actually, that’s a bit harsh on Mr Splitfoot, but it wasn’t the classic that I as expecting. Oh, and Where Old Bones Lie was a bit flat as well.
But on to the good ones. The Mansions of Murder was one of Paul Doherty’s best, The Madman’s Room was suitably bonkers and both titles from Anthony Horowitz were truly outstanding, as was the classic The Norwich Victims. So decisions, decisions…
I’m very tempted to go for The Norwich Victims. Seriously, if you’re a fan of classic crime fiction, don’t be put off by its inverted-mystery format. It’s a real cracker. And it would be impossible to ignore The Word Is Murder if I hadn’t read Magpie Murders in the same month – that’s the one that walks off with the award for the month and becomes my wallpaper for September.
Next month, a few British Library titles, another John Rhode for your delectation and the next book from fellow blogger Sarah Ward – A Patient Fury. And my first go at Delano Ames, a favourite of fellow blogger Kate of Cross Examing Crime.