Blood from a Stone (Commissario Brunetti, #14) by Donna Leon

Cover of

I picked up the paperback of this on holiday from a selection of English books left on the campsite in France. Haven’t read Donna Leon in a while and I was in the right frame of mind to enjoy it. It was nice to have Brunetti whinging about the winter cold of Venice whilst I was baking in the sun – I mean the shade, I don’t do sun.


More information about this book can be found on goodreads.

London Rain (Josephine Tey, #6) by Nicola Upson

Cover of

Another interesting book in this series that is more than a crime novel. I think the plot is probably a bit ropey if you stop to think about it too long, but I don’t want to do that, it was interesting enough. I enjoyed it as a period piece from the 1930s when people who seem modern and unconventional are nevertheless completely caught up in the coronation of a new king – this obsession with royalty along with other views that would seem very weird to me today was one of the most captivating things about the book and made me think about how much attitudes, and society in general, have changed over the last eighty years.


More information about this book can be found on goodreads.
This was a kindle eBook.

A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler

Cover of A Spool of Blue Thread

I loved this. Slow paced story of a family and a house. It bobs back and forth in time and reveals bits of the skeletons in the family wardrobe as it goes. No great plot really but I could have gone on forever reading it and I want to know more about the characters we didn’t get close to here.


More information about this book can be found on goodreads.

The Ghost Fields (Ruth Galloway, #7) by Elly Griffiths

Cover of

Entertaining and interesting despite being written to the same formula as all the other books in the series. I keep coming back for more despite always getting annoyed at the bit where Ruth plunges alone without a torch down the steps to a dark cellar filled with murderers (not literally, but she always does that kind of lumbering into danger thing). Actually I really liked the bit where the metaphorical torch was actually an iPhone with a dying battery and no signal, I could relate! I guess the good outweighs the predictable here.


More information about this book can be found on goodreads.
This was a kindle eBook.

The Monogram Murders by Sophie Hannah

Cover of

To be honest I wasn’t expecting much of this – I only bought it when I spotted it in the charity bookshop, not exactly a must read. There are plenty of original Christies that I haven’t read and could if I really wanted to read that kind of thing. So the fact that I quite enjoyed it probably stems from the fact that my expectations were pretty low to start with. It was a good idea to give Poirot a new sidekick-narrator (I presume, he has several different ones as well as Hastings in the original books). Though perhaps it wasn’t such a good idea to make him quite so dim. I was waiting for him to suddenly twist something and spot something that Poirot hadn’t done, thereby making his presence in the book useful, but it never happened. He was supposed to be a young up-and-coming Scotland Yard detective but I could never figure out why that was. The plot was pretty preposterous but I was willing to go along with it, Christie did preposterous pretty well herself. The book just felt overlong compared with my memories of the originals which were paperbacks to be thrown off on a train journey, not hours and hours of convoluted complications. The characters felt pretty much like Christie’s though, I didn’t feel Poirot had been dragged too far into the twenty-first century. In the end, it was okay, nothing special, and given that there can’t be that many people who have read all the original Christies and still hanker for more whilst not wanting to re-read, this really isn’t any more than an extended advert by Christie’s estate for all her other books.


More information about this book can be found on goodreads.

The Monogram Murders (New Hercule Poirot Mysteries, #1) by Sophie Hannah

Cover of The Monogram Murders (New Hercule Poirot Mysteries, #1)

To be honest I wasn’t expecting much of this – I only bought it when I spotted it in the charity bookshop, not exactly a must read. There are plenty of original Christies that I haven’t read and could if I really wanted to read that kind of thing. So the fact that I quite enjoyed it probably stems from the fact that my expectations were pretty low to start with.

It was a good idea to give Poirot a new sidekick-narrator (I presume, he has several different ones as well as Hastings in the original books). Though perhaps it wasn’t such a good idea to make him quite so dim. I was waiting for him to suddenly twist something and spot something that Poirot hadn’t done, thereby making his presence in the book useful, but it never happened. He was supposed to be a young up-and-coming Scotland Yard detective but I could never figure out why that was.

The plot was pretty preposterous but I was willing to go along with it, Christie did preposterous pretty well herself. The book just felt overlong compared with my memories of the originals which were paperbacks to be thrown off on a train journey, not hours and hours of convoluted complications. The characters felt pretty much like Christie’s though, I didn’t feel Poirot had been dragged too far into the twenty-first century.

In the end, it was okay, nothing special, and given that there can’t be that many people who have read all the original Christies and still hanker for more whilst not wanting to re-read, this really isn’t any more than an extended advert by Christie’s estate for all her other books.


More information about this book can be found on goodreads.