Monday, 28 October 2013

October reads

1. I picked up 1066 And All That for a couple of quid in Brighton, attracted by the wonderful Penguin Classics cover.  Rather juvenile humour, and you'll only really get the jokes if you're as much of a history geek as I am, but it makes for amusing reading and is perfect to dip into at bedtime.

2. Another bargain book, this time from Fopp in Nottingham.  I really loved Beth Ditto's autobiography, which was a pleasingly slim volume.  I can't be doing with bloated celebrity memoirs of people who've achieved nothing bar winning X Factor, and Ditto undoubtably has more to say than any of them, and manages to do it entertainingly in fewer words.  I'll be writing a proper review of this book for Daire's Non Fic November.

3. On a trip to London (gosh, I've got around this month haven't I?!), I discovered to my horror that my Kindle battery was dead.  So, as soon as I was off the train I descended on the first bookshop I could find and bought The Redeemer for the princely sum of £2.50.  I'd enjoyed The Snowman, another book in the Harry Hole series, but found this one hard going.  The premise - a Salvation Army officer is shot dead during a carol service, but the assassin goes rogue when he discovers he's killed the wrong man - was a good one, but it became somewhat predictable and was overly long.

4. Close My Eyes was easily one of the worst books I've read this year.  I had read a positive review of it on a blog (I can't recall which, but whoever's it was - I hate you!) and thought it sounded good.  It wasn't.  A sub- Gone Girl and Before I Go To Sleep thriller that rips off the latter unashamedly, it had the most ludicrous plot (I had to keep putting it down just to share the latest ridiculous 'twists' with The Boy so we could laugh at them), which I still somehow managed to work out miles before the end. 
5. My mum had recommended Sayers' detective novels, from the so-called Golden Age of crime writing (think Agatha Christie), so when I saw this cheap I snapped it up.  It was an enjoyable romp set in 1930s Kirkcudbright (an artist's colony in Scotland), with Sayers' detective, Lord Peter Wimsey, trying to sort the red herrings from the murderer in a case where everyone seems to be guilty of something.  I'd certainly read another in the series if I happened across a copy.
6. The final crime novel of October, Unseen was a typically bleak and tense tale of drugs barons, murderers and child trafficking, set in Atlanta, Georgia and featuring regular Karin Slaughter characters Will Trent and Sara Linton.  I really liked it, but I'm a fan of the series and I'm not sure it would make a great deal of sense to new readers.

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