Current Reading: Burley, Edwards, Nabb, Knight

wycliffe-and-the-three-toed-pussyI read W.J. Burley’s Wycliff and the Three-Toed Pussy, the first in the Wycliffe series, published in 1968. It was a good introduction to the character of Superintendent Wycliffe, it showed the author’s ability to depict the Cornish coast and village life there, it provided interesting mystery, but I found the murder, as revealed at the end, to be of questionable believability. Last year I read a book later in the series and liked it better, so I’ll continue reading Wycliffe as I come to the books in the ToBeRead pile. In the book it was frequently stormy, so it was a good fit for the couple of rainy days I spent on it.

serpents-in-edenNext read was Serpents In Eden, one of the British Library Crime Classics series published (in the U.S.) by Poisoned Pen Press. This is a fine series, and this particular book of short stories, edited by Martin Edwards, was very enjoyable, though there were a couple of weak entries in this golden age set.

I finished up The Grottos of Chinatown in time to post it as my forgotten collection just this last Friday, and I’m currently reading Death of An Englishman by Magdalen Nabb. This is the first book in the series featuring Marshal Salvatore Guarnaccia of Florence. Nabb is a new author to me, found thanks to a recent Friday Forgotten Book review by B.V. Lawson. She reviewed a later entry in the series, but I wanted to begin at the beginning. I’ll have it finished in another day or so.

disclaimerBarbara finished the third Murder Squad book, The Devil’s Workshop and turned to Disclaimer by Renee Knight. This stand-alone novel was given a strong recommendation by Deb.

It took some time to get used to the multiple POVs and flashbacks for various characters, but in the end she found it very compelling. If Knight writes another, she’ll give it a try.

Barbara is now reading Blind Sight by Carol O’Connell, the newest Mallory novel.

How about you?
What are you reading?

About Richard Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
This entry was posted in Books & Reading, current reading, Mystery. Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Current Reading: Burley, Edwards, Nabb, Knight

  1. Deb says:

    I finished Blake Crouch’s WAYWARD–the second novel in the Wayward Pines series. I haven’t seen the tv show, but I enjoyed the book as a Twin-Peaks-meets-Under-the-Dome-meets-the-episode-of-the-Twilight-Zone-where-the-couple-wakes-up-in-a-model-railway-village-meets-life-in-Pyongyang mashup. I especially liked the fact that the hero/main character, Ethan Burke, is conflicted about his role as Sheriff of Wayward Pines and his motivations (even to himself) are ambiguous. His wife has her own secrets and complications–I’m assuming they’ll be addressed in the next book.

    (As an aside, as a relative newbie here, can I say how much I enjoy this Monday feature. Along with Patti’s FFB and Lesa’s WHAT ARE YOU READING?, it’s one of my favorite spots to get book recommendations and just find out what people are reading–and doing otherwise in their lives. Thank you for hosting and providing such an interesting forum.)

    • Good morning, Deb. I don’t think WAYWARD will go on my to-read list, but your description was entertaining. Thanks for your kind words about Current Reading. It started when I found a group of bloggers doing “Monday Maibox” about books that had arrived over the week, and I did mine as New Arrivals, but decided to go with what I’m reading instead, as that’s what we’d talk about in person. I get many good book ideas too. I wish more people participated, so pass the word.

    • Steve Oerkfitz says:

      Watched the first season of Wayward Pines but bailed a couple of episodes into season 2. Just not very well done.

  2. Jerry House says:

    Another slow week for me. The only novel I read was the latest in John Connelly’s Charlie Parker series, A TIME OF TORMENT. As always with that series, I;m enjoyed it greatly. I’m now working my way through CONQUEST, the first book in a YA SF trilogy by Connelly and Jennifer Ridyard.

    I had better luck with graphic novels and went through five of them. Four were about the Justice League of America: THE TENTH CIRCLE, TRIAL BY FIRE, NEW WORLD ORDER, and THE OBSIDIAN AGE, BOOK 2; the fifth GN was Chris Claremont’s X-TREME X-MEN.

    The new TV season is beginning. So far, the returning BLACKLIST and GOTHAM top my list. I thiunk I’m going to tire very soon with BULL (which appears to be an apt name, although they forgot the last four letters). I’m on the fence about VAN HELSING. There’s been a lot of buzz about the new fantasy show that airs tonight, DEBATE, but I think I’m going to skip this one — the villain seems to be so over the top that I will not be able to suspend disbelief.

    The days here are slowly moving from blistering hot to a more comfortable warm. Soon it will be time to go outside again. Take care, as always.

    • Jeff Meyerson says:

      Got to agree with you on BULL. We got through maybe 10-15 minutes before turning it off. It was either that or burn down CBS.

    • Barbara liked that Connelly book a lot, I’ve not read it. Not being much of a TV watcher – I’d rather read – none of those sounds good to me. Barbara watched and liked the first few seasons of BLACKLIST and liked it, but then didn’t watch it last season and now feels she’s too far behind to catch up.

  3. Jeff Meyerson says:

    THREE-TOED PUSSY (as it was originally called) remains the only Burley book I’ve read. I used to have a bunch of them. I agree on the Edwards book, SERPENTS IN EDEN (subtitled Countryside Crimes). They are a mixed bag but always worth reading.

    We got home Wednesday night from New Orleans (meeting Deb and her husband John for breakfast on Saturday was definitely a highlight of the trip) and it took me a couple of days to get everything back to normal. I did get a few things read this week. First was the 1967 Lawrence Block book I mentioned before, PASSPORT TO PERIL, originally published as by Anne Campbell Clark. As that might suggest, the narrator is a woman, a young folk singer on a trip (funded by the State Department) to a festival in Germany (hint: she never gets there), first going to London and Dublin (and the rest of Ireland) collecting folk songs. But in London she is mugged, strangely, and which of the “helpful” strangers she meets along the way is really a bad guy? This was one of Block’s older books you can occasionally get free on the Kindle from his website (Bill Crider often mentions these when they come available) and it was entertaining enough, if nothing special.

    I liked the two short story collections this week better, starting with YOUR BODY IS CHANGING by Jack Pendarvis, particularly the long title novella, which is wacky in a fun way. The other was just reviewed by George Kelley, Robert Silverberg’s EARLY DAYS: More Tales From the Pulp Era. You really can’t go wrong with Silverberg’s stories, even mostly silly early ones like these.

    • Glad you had a good time in New Orleans, thanks for the pictures. I never get much reading done at mystery cons. I’m afraid none of your reading this week has me running to the library, but I have more than enough on hand now anyway. I think you might try another Wycliffe, the first one was just so-so, but the other I read was better.

  4. A MAN CALLED OVE (Bachman) which is enjoyable. Reading through A HELL OF A WOMAN again for Friday. Phil read and liked NIX-forget the author.

  5. I’m back to reading short story collections as the Fall Semester is on the eve of the First Exam next week. As for the new TV season, we’re watching DESIGNATED SURVIVOR. It’s a far cry from 24. We may abandon it unless there’s a lot more action. I have no interest in the FOUR new Time Travel TV series. And I love Time Travel! I’ll wait for DOCTOR WHO to return.

  6. Jeff Meyerson says:

    I figure with the new season we’ll get a lot more reading done. So far we watched the first episode of DESIGNATED SURVIVOR. All I can say it, when the does the thigh shooting start? And when do they bring in Chloe to get the schematics? So far, it was watchable but he’s no Jack Bauer.

    Other than that? Jackie watched NOTORIOUS (not me) and recorded THE TWO OF US (a show described as more treacle than a Celine Dion tribute concert is not for me). We got through 10 minutes or so of BULL before pulling the plug.

  7. Jeff, they did set up a parameter in the first episode of DESIGNATED SURVIVOR. The pace was a little slow for me. Diane and I will give it one more episode to grab us or we’ll drop it.

  8. Steve Oerkfitz says:

    Read this week were Gunshine State by Andrew Nette , a Australian crime novel along the lines of Garry Disher’s Wyatt series and Westlakes Parker books. Also finished The Killing Kind by Chris Holm. Liked both but didn’t love them. Right now I’m reading The Gradual by Christopher Priest with Mad Dog Barked by Rick Ollerman soon to follow.
    Watching Gotham and Quarry but other than that not much regular TV. Missing Ray Donovan already. Looking forward to Westworld.

  9. Steve Oerkfitz says:

    Forgot. Longmire season 5 has started on Netflixs.

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