I recently posted my review of THE THURSDAY MURDER CLUB by Richard Osman, on my library's Facebook page.
Friday, February 26, 2021
Wednesday, February 17, 2021
Tuesday, February 09, 2021
Scandi-Brits is a term (I believe) coined by Scandi expert Barry Forshaw to cover those from Britain writing about Scandinavia/Nordic countries in English. I'm going to loosen it slightly for this post so I can include a few non-Brits. I'm starting with Iceland and please let me know any titles I've missed.
For Icelandic authors please see my list on the Euro Crime website.
My own interest in Iceland was piqued by the TV series Running Blind based on Desmond Bagley's 1970 novel which was shown in 1979. Never released for home viewing, you can now watch it on YouTube.The assignment begins with a simple errand – a parcel to deliver. But to Alan Stewart, standing on a deserted road in Iceland with a murdered man at his feet, it looks anything but simple. The desolate terrain is obstacle enough. But when Stewart realises he has been double-crossed and that the opposition is gaining ground, his simple mission seems impossible…
More recently we have had Quentin Bates and Michael Ridpath setting series there:
Northern Iceland, 1829.
A woman condemned to death for murdering her lover.
A family forced to take her in.
A priest tasked with absolving her.
But all is not as it seems, and time is running out:
winter is coming, and with it the execution date.
Only she can know the truth. This is Agnes's story.
There she finds a man who refuses to speak of his recently deceased first wife, and villagers who view her with suspicion.
Isolated and disturbed by her husband's strange behaviour, her fears deepen.
What is making the strange sounds in the attic?
Who does the mysterious glass figure she is given represent?
And why do the villagers talk of the coming winter darkness in hushed tones?
When the police fail to take her seriously, her hands-on approach to the investigation soon lands her in hot water.
Following a string of biblical messages left behind by a mysterious nemesis she stumbles upon a dark secret that has finally come home to roost.
As she is about to find out, on a small island, what goes around, comes around.
The Icelandic interior, uninhabited, glacial, volcanic, and accessible only in summer, is the last place to be in winter. But during an assassination attempt on the world’s leading cybercrime specialist at a conference in Reykjavík, it's the only place left to hide.
When the Icelandic State Police run out of resources, responsibility for hunting the assassins is given to the Polar Task Force, and it is native Icelander Hákon Sigurdsson’s job to lead a team into the interior.
Plagued by political agendas of sovereignty and power, the Polar Task Force, including members chosen from each of the countries located in the Arctic, needs a win to ensure the survival of the unit. The pressure is on, and it is up to Hákon to choose his team, complete the mission, and bring them back alive.
For any other task force, a winter pursuit of well-armed assassins into Iceland’s interior is nothing short of madness.
American author Betty Webb's The Puffin of Death (2015), the fourth in her Gunn Zoo series, visits Iceland in this outing.
California zookeeper Theodora Bentley travels to Iceland to pick up an orphaned polar bear cub destined for the Gunn Zoo's newly installed Northern Climes exhibit. The trip is intended to be a combination of work and play.
But on day two, while horseback riding near a picturesque seaside village, Teddy discovers a man lying atop a puffin burrow, shot through the head. The victim is identified as American birdwatcher Simon Parr, winner of the largest Powerball payout in history. Is Teddy a witness - or a suspect? Others include not only Parr's wife, a famed suspense novelist, but fellow members of the birding club Parr had generously treated to their lavish Icelandic expedition. Hardly your average birders, several of them have had serious brushes with the law back in the States.
Guessing that an American would best understand other Americans, police detective Thorvaald Haraldsson grudgingly concedes her innocence and allows Teddy to tag along with the group to volcanoes, glaciers, and deep continental rifts in quest of rare bird species. But once another member of the club is murdered and a rockfall barely misses Teddy's head, Haraldsson forbids her to continue. She ignores him and, in a stunning, solitary face-off with the killer in Iceland's wild interior, concludes an investigation at once exotic, thrilling, and rich in animal lore.
And finally, French author Fred Vargas's A Climate of Fear (2016) translated by Sian Reynolds, has a large portion set in Iceland.
One wedding party + one estranged mother = another vacation that goes array for Naomi.
Naomi is off on another international vacation. She thinks traveling with her mother will be the most difficult part of her trip until she meets the rest of the tour group—a wedding party. It only gets worse when she finds the groom dead. Everyone’s a suspect on her Icelandic tour of this stunning country.
Wednesday, February 03, 2021
Tuesday, February 02, 2021
Monday, February 01, 2021
• Adolfsson, Maria - The Fatal Isles #1 Doggerland trilogy
• Abbott, Rachel - Close Your Eyes #10 DI Tom Douglas
• Adams, R G - Allegation
• Allen, Hania - The Ice Hotel
• Bailey, Martine - The Prophet
• Baker, Tina - Call Me Mummy
• Bishop, D V - City of Vengeance #1 Cesare Aldo, Florence, 1536
• Black, P R - The Long Dark Road
• Blake, Robin - Secret Mischief #7 Titus Cragg, Coroner & Luke Fidelis, Doctor, 1740 Lancashire
• Craig, James - Circus Games #15 Inspector John Carlyle
• Cross, A J - Devil in the Detail #2 Will Traynor, Criminologist
• Díaz, Eloísa - Repentance
• Donnelly, Gary - Never Ask the Dead #3 DI Owen Sheen, Northern Ireland
• Duckworth, Charlotte - The Perfect Father
• Dunford, Caroline - Hope to Survive #2 Hope Stapleford, Secret Agent, 1939
• East, Philippa - Safe and Sound
• Ellory, R J - Proof of Life
• Ewart, Andrew - Replace You
• Fennell, David - The Art of Death #1 DI Grace Archer & DS Harry Quinn, London
• Fields, Helen - The Shadow Man
• Finch, Charles - An Extravagant Death #11 Charles Lenox, Victorian gentleman and armchair explorer
• Fitzek, Sebastian - Passenger 23
• Fois, Marcello - Valse Triste
• Griffiths, Elly - The Night Hawk #13 Dr Ruth Galloway, forensic archaeologist and DCI Harry Nelson
• Herron, Mick - Slough House #7 Slough House
• Hore, Rachel - A Beautiful Spy
• Horst & Enger -Smoke Screen #2 Alexander Blix
• Hunter, M A - Isolated #2 The Missing Children Case Files
• Jackson, Stina - The Last Snow
• Jarratt, Laura - Mother
• Khadra, Yasmina - Khalil
• Lark, J S - The Twins
• Leather, Stephen - The Hunting
• Lowe, Katie - Possession (apa The Murder of Graham Catton)
• Lowery, Christopher - Triple Jeopardy #4 African Diamonds
• Magson, Adrian - A Hostile State #5 Marc Portman
• Martinez, Guillermo - The Oxford Brotherhood
• Matheson, Nadine - The Jigsaw Man #1 DI Henley, London
• Muir, T F - The Murder List #10 DI Andy Gilchrist & team, St. Andrews
• O'Connor, Carlene - Murder in an Irish Bookshop #7 Siobhan O'Sullivan, Kilbane, County Cork
• O'Keeffe, Bernard - The Final Round #1 DI Garibaldi, Barnes, London
• Olguin, Sergio - The Foreign Girls #2 Veronica Rosenthal
• Oswald, James - What Will Burn #11 Detective Inspector McLean, Edinburgh
• Pearse, Sarah - The Sanatorium
• Quinn, Cate - Black Widows
• Ridpath, Michael - The Diplomat's Wife
• Ryan, Sadie - When He Finds You
• Sakhlecha, Trisha - Can You See Me Now?
• Sennen, Mark - Rogue Target #2 Holm & da Silva
• Shepherd-Robinson, Laura - Daughters of Night
• Sherratt, Mel - Good Girl #4 DS Grace Allendale
• Shindler, Will - The Killing Choice #2 DI Alex Finn & DC Mattie Paulsen, London
• Skuse, C J - Dead Head #3 Sweetpea
• Spencer, Sally - The Company
• Stirling, Joss - Red House #3 Jess Bridges
• Szymiczkowa, Maryla - Karolina, or the Torn Curtain
• Talbot, Catherine - A Good Father
• Todd, Marion - What They Knew #4 DI Clare Mackay
• Wyer, Carol - An Eye for an Eye #1 DI Kate Young, Staffordshire
Friday, January 29, 2021
I recently posted my review of THE WINDSOR KNOT by SJ Bennett on my library's Facebook page:
For all its outward appearance of being a ‘’ read there is a bit more grit to it than that. As well as the manner of death, it also includes spying and drug-use as potential motives, but as this exchange between the Queen and Prince Philip shows, she’s unshockable:
“They forget. I’ve lived through a world war, that Ferguson girl and you in the Navy”
“And yet they think you’ll need smelling salts if they so much as hint at anything fruity. All they see is a little old lady in a hat.”
This is an enjoyable “country house” mystery with any wrongdoers having had to have been on the premises due to the tight security arrangements. The plot is quite complicated and revolves around a significant clue, one that the Queen can assist with explaining. If you watch ‘The Crown’ or are interested in the Royal Family, then that will give an added dimension.