The Shameful Book Club: Final Mystery Novel Update

It’s laughable how bad I am at this blogging thing, but here is my final mystery genre update for my Shameful Book Club! Before I get to the good stuff, I want to quickly mention that due to exciting life changes I’ll be switching up the format of this book club to one book a month. More on that at the bottom of the post, plus July’s read!

51VBtIu7KELAs I left it last time, I was already beginning the first of Tana French’s Dublin Murder Squad novels, In The Woods. This book had my mouth open the entire time I was reading it. I was completely absorbed in its world and characters. While I and everyone I know who’s read it loved this book, I can see how some people would feel differently. I could see how some people would actually hate it. The characters are incredibly unlikable, most of all our hero, Detective Rob Ryan.

Rob was part of a notorious group of kids who wandered into the woods outside of their village one day and never came back. Rob, whose legal name is Adam, was finally found covered in blood and in severe shock. His two best friends were never recovered. He remembers nothing from the event and rarely thinks about it, until a child’s murder brings him and his partner, Cassie Maddox, back to his home town.

Continue reading

The Shameful Book Club: Mystery Novel Update

Not to get ahead of myself, but I might actually finish all my books for this season’s challenge. I might even finish the bonus books as well! Last month I read three of my six mystery novels for Spring. A bit of mystery and intrigue was the perfect way to welcome the warm air and sunshine back into my life. Yes, murder and 70-degree temperatures really brighten my mood. My first batch here were all older and all written by women. They range in tone, mystery style, and types of characters.

BA28X1_MEDFirst up for me was The Circular Staircase, which is the oldest novel on my list (1908) and also one of the funniest. Rachel Innes, an old spinster, plans to spend an extended vacation in the country with her niece and nephew, Gertrude and Halsey, in a lovely house they’ve rented in the country. The first night of her stay, she deals with a trespasser trying to break into the house and a strange noise that sounds like something large falling down a circular staircase at one end of the house. The next night there is an unexplained murder near the same stairs, and a body is discovered. This throws the family into a whirlwind of trouble. First Halsey is a suspect, then his friend that was visiting with them that evening, then almost everyone in the town! The pieces of the puzzle are so intricate and intertwined, that it was very hard for me to guess most of solution until rather close to the end of the book. There are several overlapping narratives at play and they just happened to coincide in a perfect storm. As I’ve mentioned in earlier posts, she’s one of the first originators of the “if I had only known” style of mystery, and if Rachel had only known one or two pieces of this puzzle, she would have probably been able to solve it much quicker.

Continue reading

The Shameful Book Club: Mystery Novels for Spring

magnifying-glasMystery novels — my favorite! My selections for this Spring’s reading challenge are by far the most random, but I think they will compliment each other well. I put together a healthy mix of classic and contemporary detective and mystery novels from writers I love and writers I’ve never read. There are six core novels and then three bonus novels on this list. But since these are fast-paced, exciting, and usually short books, I hope I’ll be able to get through at least the majority of them in the March-June timeline. I don’t have the greatest track record, however.

As usual, there are some books on this list that are embarrassing for me to admit that I haven’t read them yet, but that is the entire reason for the Shameful Book Club. If you have read any of these already, let me know what you think of them. And if you have a good mystery series that you think I should pick up, let me know! If mysteries aren’t really your thing, take this as an opportunity to give them a try. Otherwise, I’ll be doing science fiction novels in the summer. I hope you guys participate with me this season. It’s going to be a thrilling thaw.

Continue reading