White Corridor (Pol Proc-Bryant and May-England-Contemp) – 5th in series – Christopher Fowler It’s the classic locked-room mystery—a member of the Peculiar Crimes Unit killed inside a sealed morgue populated only by the dead and to which only four PCU members had a key. To make matters worse, the Unit has been shut down for a forced “vacation,” and Bryant and May are stuck in a van in the Dartmoor countryside during a freak snowstorm. Now they’ll have to crack the case by cell phone while trying to stop a second murder without freezing to death. For among the line of trapped vehicles, a killer is on the prowl, a beautiful woman is on the run, and an innocent child is caught in the middle.Corona – Okay - I must have been in a bad mood; I usually enjoy, really enjoy, the Bryant and May stories but I found this one formulaic and the mystery resolutions throw-aways, i.e., think of the most far-left solutions then write a pretzel-storyline to explain them. But I enjoyed the friendly references to marijuana. Linda S – VG – Love Bryant and May as they are such fun characters and they actually detect. Loved that their investigating was done via cell phone. Both the plot twists worked although one made her sad.LJ – VG - One of the things I love about this series is the creativeness of the plots, and there are so many elements I enjoyed in this book. First, I love the characters; the quirkiness of Bryant and the protectiveness of May. The sense of place was excellent; you felt them stuck in that blizzard and dreaded every time they had to get out of their van and into the cold. I appreciated their helping their colleagues solve the case back at headquarters and the approach that they wouldn’t always be there to solve the cases. Fowler took what could have been a cliché story line and gave us something new with it. Group Rating Average: G+The Cruelest Month (Pol Proc-CI Armand Gamache-Three Pines, Canada-Contemp) – 3rd in series – Louise Penny Welcome to Three Pines, where the cruelest month is about to deliver on its threat. When some villagers decide to celebrate Easter with a seance at the Old Hadley House, they are hoping to rid the town of its evil---until one of their party dies of fright. Was this a natural death, or was the victim somehow helped along? Brilliant, compassionate Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Surete du Quebec is called to investigate, in a case that will force him to face his own ghosts as well as those of a seemingly idyllic town where relationships are far more dangerous than they seem.Corona - I’m about 1/3 of the way thru but already find it rich, well written and witty. (Several lines asking for the highlighter already. My first impression of Three Pines was reminiscent of Melrose’s hometown in the Grimes/R. Jury novels. But it didn’t take long for the differences to appear: not everybody is harmless, everyone is more complicated and the atmosphere is darker. I find the prose packed with details and therefore slow to read; I need to keep rereading paragraphs to get all the details – I don’t mind this at all. Again, I’m just about a third through so at the risk of making a hasty judgment; the hostility from the Superintendent towards the protagonist (that he isn’t aware of) seems way out of place, it doesn’t fit – a round peg in a square hole. – Since the author comes so highly recommended I trust this will all fall into place soon.LJ – Ex - There are not a lot of authors whose words beg me to read them aloud, but I spent the weekend annoying a friend with my constant "Listen to this...". There is such humor and incite in Penny's writing. For me, she hits all the right notes; wonderful sense of place, fascinating well-rounded human characters, excellent dialogue, a bit of suspense, meticulous plotting and just a faint touch of spiritualism. I came away from this, and all her books, feeling I've been giving a bit of insight on human nature but never that I've been preached to. For me, this book was so much more than a basic traditional mystery and quite possibly, the best of her books yet. The only problem I had with this book was that life kept getting in the way of my reading time. Marcy G – Ex - Had read Still Life and thought it was good. Picked this up and through it was so much better. There are very complex characters and she really felt as though the authors was talking to her. She loved every minutes of it; from page one to the very end. Group Rating Average - Ex
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