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September Monthly Summary (told you I had a cunning plan). Although the posting itself is late because of RIDICULOUSLY early fire weather with extreme heat and gale force winds. In October.

Good grief.

Not much reading last month - time off in an attempt to get some things organised before himself headed off on a work trip.

Read and Reviewed this Month:

Crime Fiction

Big Little Lies, Liane Moriarty
My Rating: Not a crime novel no matter how hard you push the boundaries / too "coy" for my like overall

Pirriwee Public’s annual school Trivia Night has ended in a shocking riot. One parent is dead. Was it murder, a tragic accident...or something else entirely? Big Little Lies is a funny, heartbreaking, challenging story of ex-husbands and second wives, new friendships, old betrayals and schoolyard politics.

Reviewed This Month:

The City of Blood, Frédérique Molay
My Rating:  Having been lucky enough to read a couple of the books in this series now it's one that's well worth pursuing.

When a major Parisian modern art event gets unexpected attention on live TV, Chief of Police Nico Sirsky and his team of elite crime fighters rush to La Villette park and museum complex. On the site of the French capital's former slaughterhouses, the blood is just starting to flow, and Sirsky finds himself chasing the butcher of Paris, while his own mother faces an uncertain future.

The Disappearance of Signora Giulia, Piero Chiara
My Rating: Brilliant

When the sad, beautiful Signora Giulia goes missing without a trace from her Lake Como villa home, it is her husband who reports her disappearance to the detective Sciancalepre, and so the search begins - one that takes Sciancalepre beneath the tranquil surface of local bourgeois society, a world of snobbery and secrets, while mysterious shadows lurk in the grounds of the family villa . . . As his investigation gathers pace this atmospheric classic detective story becomes a thrilling game of legal cat and mouse.

The Tokyo Zodiac Murders, Soji Shimada
My Rating: Interesting format, really enjoyable

Astrologer, fortuneteller, and self-styled detective Kiyoshi Mitarai must in one week solve a mystery that has baffled Japan for 40 years. Who murdered the artist Umezawa, raped and killed his daughter, and then chopped up the bodies of six others to create Azoth, the supreme woman? With maps, charts, and other illustrations, this story of magic and illusion, pieced together like a great stage tragedy, challenges the reader to unravel the mystery before the final curtain. 

Europa Blues, Arne Dahl
My Rating: Loved, loved loved this

Three cases, one team of detectives and an investigation that will take them across Europe and back through history as they desperately search for answers, and the identities of their killers.

The Glass Kingdom, Chris Flynn
My Rating: Not for everyone, but definitely for me :)

In the kingdom of the blind, the one-eyed man is king. Ben and his sidekick, Mikey, run the Target Ball stand in a ramshackle carnival travelling up the east coast. Ben is trying to put his time in the army behind him and make some money. Mikey—AKA Mekong Delta, Fremantle’s answer to Fifty Cent—wants to work on his flow and impress girls.

Resurrection Bay, Emma Viskic
My Rating: Extremely strong debut with a solid balance of character and plot

Caleb Zelic, profoundly deaf since early childhood, has always lived on the outside - watching, picking up telltale signs people hide in a smile, a cough, a kiss. When a childhood friend is murdered, a sense of guilt and a determination to prove his own innocence sends Caleb on a hunt for the killer. But he can’t do it alone. Caleb and his troubled friend Frankie, an ex-cop, start with one clue: Scott, the last word the murder victim texted to Caleb. But Scott is always one step ahead.

Reviews by Robert Goodman:

The Girl in the Spider's Web, David Lagercrantz

She is the girl with the dragon tattoo. Lisbeth Salander. An uncompromising misfit whose burning sense of injustice and talent for investigation will never respect boundaries of state or status.

Trigger Mortis, Anthony Horowitz

It's 1957 and James Bond (agent 007) has only just survived his showdown with Auric Goldfinger at Fort Knox. By his side is Pussy Galore, who was with him at the end.

Read this Month / To be Reviewed:

Shwedagon, Noleen Jordan

Myanmar’s Shwedagon Pagoda stands a hundred metres high; its exterior coated with gold, diamonds, emeralds, rubies, sapphires, and topaz. This opulence pales in comparison to the pagoda’s centrepiece—a single seventy-six-carat diamond perched atop the pagoda’s spire since 1871. No guards protect this wonder and no CCTV cameras monitor it. Only floodlights at the base provide security, bathing the magnificent structure in light. It’s amazing no one has yet stolen anything from Shwedagon. Sixty-year-old Australian thrill seeker and jewel thief Hannah Nolan plans to change that.

Running Towards Danger, Tina Clough

Karen's life is abruptly thrown into chaos when her flatmate is gunned down in front of her in the street where they live. Within days she is forced to take drastic action to ensure her own safety. She criss-crosses New Zealand to evade the killers, changes her appearance and settles into a small community as 'Cara'. But danger still stalks her and she is forced to make dramatic choices in the face of threats and brutal violence.

Unreliable Memoirs, Clive James (non-mystery / reread)

'I was born in 1939. The other big event of that year was the outbreak of the Second World War, but for the moment, that did not affect me.' In the first instalment of Clive James's memoirs, we meet the young Clive, dressed in short trousers, and wrestling with the demands of school, various relatives and the occasional snake, in the suburbs of post-war Sydney.

Wyrd Sisters, Terry Pratchett (fantasy)

Terry Pratchett’s fantasy classic Wyrd Sisters, a novel in the Discworld series, is the story of Granny Weatherwax, the most highly regarded non-leader a coven of non-social witches could ever have.

The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra, Vaseem Khan

Mumbai, murder and a baby elephant combine in a charming, joyful mystery for fans of Alexander McCall Smith and Rachel Joyce. On the day he retires, Inspector Ashwin Chopra inherits two unexpected mysteries. The first is the case of a drowned boy, whose suspicious death no one seems to want solved. And the second is a baby elephant.

 

Snowblind, Ragnar Jónasson

Siglufjörður: an idyllically quiet fishing village in Northern Iceland, where no one locks their doors – accessible only via a small mountain tunnel. Ari Thór Arason: a rookie policeman on his first posting, far from his girlfriend in Reykjavik – with a past that he’s unable to leave behind. When a young woman is found lying half-naked in the snow, bleeding and unconscious, and a highly esteemed, elderly writer falls to his death in the local theatre, Ari is dragged straight into the heart of a community where he can trust no one, and secrets and lies are a way of life.

The Lying Down Room, Anna Jaquiery

Paris; in the stifling August heat, Commandant Serge Morel is called to a disturbing crime scene. An elderly woman has been murdered to the soundtrack of Faure’s Requiem, her body then grotesquely displayed.

Blood, Salt, Water Denise Mina

DI Alex Morrow and her team have been shadowing a woman suspected of being involved in a large drug-smuggling and money-laundering operation. Roxanna Fuentecilla recently moved from London to Glasgow under suspicious circumstances, and Morrow's bosses want all the glory when she's finally arrested. But then Roxanna disappears. She's left her partner and her two children, and something about the situation, and the children's evasive attitude, leads Morrow to question what's really going on.

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