Monday, 30 May 2016


After a couple of months off from the task at hand, back again......
Iain Levison x 2, John D. MacDonald, Tess Gerritsen x 2, 

One from the long Travis series!

 A Memoir of Thirty Jobs I Quit, Nine That Fired Me, and Three I Can't Remember

Margaret Millar, Joel Dicker, Iain Levison, Chris Holbrook, Ellery Queen two-fer!

Not tried any Millar yet!

Courtesy of blog friend Moira @ CiB

Short story collection,

Dan Fante, Jennifer Kincheloe, Bill Hillmann, Jeff Klima,

The title has me thinking of Anne Frank and her diary somehow!

Irvine Welsh liked it!

Fante memoir by the son - the recently passed Dan Fante.

Nice job - cleaning up crime scenes! 

Mark Pryor, Ruth Dugdall, Terry Shames, Gordon McAlpine, Eric Matheny,

Already read - photos taken 6 months ago!

Intriguing title! Intriguing book!
 "Woman with a Blue Pencil is a brilliantly structured labyrinth of a novel--something of an enigma wrapped in a mystery, postmodernist in its experimental bravado and yet satisfyingly well-grounded in the Los Angeles of its World War II era. Gordon McAlpine has imagined a totally unique work of 'mystery' fiction--one that Kafka, Borges, and Nabokov, as well as Dashiell Hammett, would have appreciated."


What becomes of a character cut from a writer's working manuscript? 

On the eve of Pearl Harbor, Sam Sumida, a Japanese-American academic, has been thrust into the role of amateur P.I., investigating his wife's murder, which has been largely ignored by the LAPD.  Grief stricken by her loss, disoriented by his ill-prepared change of occupation, the worst is yet to come, Sam discovers that, inexplicably, he has become not only unrecognizable to his former acquaintances but that all signs of his existence (including even the murder he's investigating) have been erased. Unaware that he is a discarded, fictional creation, he resumes his investigation in a world now characterized not only by his own sense of isolation but by wartime fear. 

Meantime, Sam's story is interspersed with chapters from a pulp spy novel that features an L.A.-based Korean P.I. with jingoistic and anti-Japanese, post December 7th attitudes - the revised, politically and commercially viable character for whom Sumida has been excised. 

Behind it all is the ambitious, 20-year-old Nisei author who has made the changes, despite the relocation of himself and his family to a Japanese internment camp.  And, looming above, is his book editor in New York, who serves as both muse and manipulator to the young author--the woman with the blue pencil, a new kind of femme fatale.   
New-to-me author - Eric Matheny

Ruth Dugdall!

Nicholas Searle, Robert Palmer, Allen Eskens, Mick Herron, Kerry Hadley-Pryce,

Anyone familiar with the "black country" an area in the West Midlands, England?
 Maddie and Harry: she’s an estate agent, he’s a teacher. They’ll say they live in the Black Country. They’ll say how they met Jonathan Cotard, explain how they later argued, had a car accident, thought they’d killed someone. Thought they had. And as they search for a truth, they’ll tell us their secrets, their mistakes. And we’ll judge them. We'll judge Harry's fling with a schoolgirl and Maddie's previous life. We'll judge the nature of love and violence, good and evil. The Black Country. For Maddie and Harry, it’s darker than it should be.

Mick Herron and his gang of Slow Horses from Slough House!

Read a few months back - very good!

Sheila Quigley, Peter Swanson. C. B. McKenzie, Susan Froetschel, Leo Perutz,

Vintage crime given a new lease of life by Pushkin!

Susan Froetschel 

Debut novel!
 Winner of the Tony Hillerman Prize, winner of the Spur Award for Best Western Contemporary Novel, and a finalist for the Edgar Award for Best First Novel, a debut mystery set in the Southwest starring a former rodeo cowboy turned private investigator, told in a transfixingly original style.

John D. MacDonald, Linwood Barclay, Tony Parsons, Sam Millar, J. Frank James,

Karl Kane - PI novel from an author with a somewhat interesting past!
An ex-resident of Long Kesh and part of the blanket protest, to a conviction for armed robbery. His memoir ON THE BRINKS was pretty damn good!
J. Frank James - new-to-me author!

Tony Parsons - seen mixed reviews for this one - my wife sort of enjoyed it!

Travis again!

John Grant, L. A. Morse x 2, Anya Lipska, Stephanie Gayle,

Mr Noirish himself - John Grant - fact or fiction? 

Polish crime in London?

Stephanie Gayle!

Christina James, Kris Nelscott, Matthew Pritchard, J. Frank James, Frank Westworth,

Short series opener.

Murder and corruption in Spain!

Male, black PI novel from a white, female author!  

Frank Westworth Chastity book!

Roy A. Teel Jr., Mark Stubbs, David Shafer, L. T. Graham, Chelsea Cain,

New-to-me author - Roy A. Teel Jr.

David Shafer - something I meant to read a year ago!

Mark Stubbs - 12 Rounds!

Chelsea Cain - standalone book possibly!

Mis-filed - read over a year ago!

Tub 73!

HIGHLIGHTS..... Looking forward to in particular - Bill Hillmann, Jeff Klima, Mick Herron, L. A. Morse, Iain Levison, 
LOWLIGHTS..... nothing I'm totally dreading, Tess Gerritsen more my wife's cup of tea than mine!


To be back-filled at some point....

Friday, 27 May 2016


A mega months viewing......

First trip to the cinema in the month, not too bad........a lot of grunting and groaning, plenty of grrrrs and aaarghs; a bit over-long - my arse cheeks were complaining by the end of it. Visually fantastic, I'm still not Leo's biggest fan.

A TV viewed film  - I'm not Jude Law's biggest fan either. It had its moments but two months on I'm struggling to remember the plot. Forgettable really! 

Last in a mini TV series about some lads getting killed off on a Stag do in Scotland. Dozed off twenty minutes from the end of the final episode which probably sums up my overall take on it. 

Series finale  - pretty bloody good! Based around some characters created by Ann Cleeves - Shetland Island and Jimmy Perez

Can't beat a bit of Jason! Pretty deep as far as his films go.........PTSD in a veteran and a life on the streets. Not sure he was supposed to get upto that with a nun though.
 Homeless and on the run from a military court martial, a damaged ex-special forces soldier navigating London's criminal underworld seizes an opportunity to assume another man's identity -- transforming into an avenging angel in the process. (REDEMPTION in the US)

First 5 episodes - boom very good indeed. Time to read something from Le Carre!

Another film on the telly. A bit of Brit grit. Hard hitting - friendship, death, drugs and getting out from under!

1946 Hitchcock - though I do have Duran Duran's tune going around my head! The B.I.G - Lil' Kim - Puff Daddy version. Quite an enjoyable film.

Amazing film - quite disturbing, highly watchable. I have an interest in the subject matter. Who'd want to be a British troop stranded in a Nationalist area in the early 70s? 

Another hard-hitting film. Israeli in origin - with subtitles. Shot and viewed entirely from the confines of a tank during an incursion into Lebanon. Not for the faint-hearted.

First one I have seen without Matt Damon - fairly good, but I couldn't tell you too much about it two months after the event.

Pretty good. I do like Christian Bale and Bradley Cooper. Plenty of dodgy fashion - big suits, wide lapels - was it the 70s or the 80s? Thankfully fashions have changed!

Another TV viewed Brit-Grit film! Residents of a tower block under attack - the price you pay for ignoring someone in need of help.

A bit of classic Clint! Loved it. 

Second cinema trip - enjoyable, but a bit flatter than I'd hoped for. I do like Maggie Smith - another national treasure!

Decent film - held my attention. Pacino and Farrell are both very watchable. CIA - SPY school theme.

Season 1 - 5 episodes binge watched and I've not yet got back to it. Fair to say it hasn't really taken off for me yet - enjoyable though.

Second viewing for me - the sort of film you can enjoy without troubling the brain too much. I do like old Bruce!

Pick of the month - '71, recommended viewing!