Current Reading, March 2 – 8, 2015

very best of Elliot

I read The Very Best of Kate Elliot, a short story collection plus four of her essays. The stories were well written, though I admit not all of them interested me. I found the essays a little too laden with issue politics for my taste, but many will enjoy them. The cover art by Julie Dillon is great. Reading this, along with finishing Christie’s The Thirteen Problems, got me caught up on my short story reading.


I also read Murder At the Brightwell by Ashley Weaver, which had a little too much fashion and heavy breathing for my taste, but I skimmed through it, just to see if I had guessed rightly about the villain. (I did). I started Pale Death by Barbara Cleverly,  (after reading a review in Mystery Scene) then realized it was #12 in the series so I have requested the first one from the library. I haven’t read any of her books, but the first two chapters of Pale Death were good and I do try to read a variety of things; one never knows what might be discovered.

Barbara’s reading was slowed by some tooth work, but she finished Jo Nesbo’s The Snowman and is now reading Firewall by Henning Mankell, a Kurt Wallender mystery, and her first try on this author. She has enjoyed some, but not all, of the Scandinavian authors she’s tried.

What are you reading?

About Rick Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
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15 Responses to Current Reading, March 2 – 8, 2015

  1. Jerry House says:

    Richard, It’s been minly short stories for me this week. I read three Groff Conklin SF anthologies (CROSSROADS IN TIME, ELSEWHERE AND ELSEWHEN, and DIMENSION FOUR — as always with Conklin, these were a mix of the familiar and the unfamiliar) and HER SMOKE ROSE UP FOREVER, a “Best of” collection of James Tiptree, Jr.’s science fiction. I also read Lawrence Block’s BORDERLINE, containing the title novel (first published as BORDER LUST as by “Don Holliday in 1962) and three short stories. For my FFB Friday I read ONLY THE CAT KNOWS by Marian Babson, a fairly strange send-up to the paperback “Gothic” novels of the 60s and 70s (and certainly not everyone’s cup of tea).

    Snow and ice are just about gone and now I have to spend a couple of hours scooping the tons of dog waste that was buried in the snow in my back yard — the only downside to warmer weather. Grrr.

  2. Patti Abbott says:

    I am trying to read VILLETTE, which Ishiguro recommended in the NYT yesterday. I got it for free from amazon. I took out and returned five books from the library. None caught my fancy.

  3. Like Jerry, I’m a fan of Groff Conklin anthologies. And, like Patti I read VILLETTE and enjoyed it. This week I’m in full nostalgia reading mode. I rarely reread books, but I’m reread four SF books I read as a kid. I’ll be reporting about the experience in next week’s FFB.

  4. I talked on my blog about my reading jam. Still in the midst of it, though maybe I broke the log jam this weekend

  5. Jeff Meyerson says:

    I read the first few Cleverly books and enjoyed them, but somehow fell away from the series and haven’t returned. So don’t take that as a commentary.

    Again, I read mostly short stories this week, 25 to be exact. All three books finished were ebooks. First was that Leo Waterman book I mentioned, G. M. Ford’s THICKER THAN WATER. I liked it and will be reading the new one soon. I finished THE VERY BEST OF CHARLES DE LINT, a large collection of fantasy stories chosen by their author. It grew on me as I went along and I liked a handful of the stories a lot. Then it was another ebook collection I picked up along the way, Todd Robinson’s DIRTY WORDS, a short, hardboiled collection.

    I’m reading a “real” book, Adrian McKinty’s second Sean Duffy book, set in the Belfast of the early 1980s, I HEAR THE SIRENS IN THE STREET. Duffy is the only Catholic in his RUC (Royal Ulster COnstabulary) unit. I liked the first book a lot.

    Now I have to pick out another story collection to read next.

  6. Richard says:

    Jerry, I saw that comment on ONLY THE CAT KNOWS by Marian Babson on your blog, as I said, it sounds pretty strange. I have read a couple of her things that were more traditional.

  7. Richard says:

    Patti, I’ve checked out and returned a couple of books lately too. At least we didn’t spend the money to buy those books! t read Mystery Scene, or reviews in NYT or Chicago Sun or somewhere and put it on the hold list at the library, then don’t care for it. Good old word of mouth and reviews by known people are better.

  8. Richard says:

    George, that sounds like fun, I look forward to your post. I’ll be at Left Coast Crime this coming Thursday – Saturday, so I’ll be doing slight con posts instead of a FFB this week.

  9. Richard says:

    Charles, I saw that post, and that happens to me too. If you’ve gotten un-jammed, that’s a good thing.

  10. Richard says:

    Jeff, I’ll take that as a vote for Cleverly, and hope the first book in the series is good. I have that DeLint book in e-format, but haven’t cracked it. There are a ton of ss collections here, but you’ve probably already read them all. How about Paul Theroux? I have read a few and liked them, and have The Tao of Travel (2011) here yet to be read.

  11. Jeff Meyerson says:

    Most of the Theroux books I’ve read have been non-fiction, mainly the travel stuff, but I have read a couple of his short story collections as well.

  12. Richard says:

    Jeff, I have a collection of his short stories that I like. It’s The Collected Stories. The US edition published by Viking in 1997, 659 pages. It has a ton of stories. You might give it a try. Matter of fact, now that I have it in hand, I may read a few more of the stories myself.

  13. Richard says:

    Oh, and Jerry, doesn’t that stuff just kind of melt away into fertilizer or something?

  14. fence says:

    I have Elliott’s collection waiting for me. I loved her Crossroads trilogy so much, but am saving her short stories and essays for a while. Don’t want to overdose 🙂

    I’ve just started Jo Walton’s My Real Children, so far it is intriguing. It’s about a woman who can remember two distinct lives as her past, but she doesn’t know which is real.

  15. Richard says:

    fence, I think my problem was I was in the mood for some SFF but the Elliot came from the library so I felt I had to read it. Meanwhile I’m continuing to reread Christie’s Marple stories and loving them.

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