English Mysteries Club discussion

396 views
A Little Off-Topic > When you're not reading a mystery...

Comments Showing 1-50 of 363 (363 new)    post a comment »
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8

message 1: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments I thought I would start a thread for us to talk about what other books we are reading... anything from non-English mysteries to other genres of fiction to nonfiction. What do you like to read when you aren't reading an English mystery?


message 2: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments I have been on a classics kick lately, so I am reading Quo Vadis by Henryk Sienkiewicz (who won the Noble Prize for Literature in 1905). I am also listening to the audiobook of The House of Mirth.


message 3: by HJ (new)

HJ | 223 comments What a good idea! I read romances, especially historical romances.

The aspect of British mysteries that I like best is that the how and whodunnit is usually almost unimportant compared to the detailed revelation of the characters and their relationships. Often books which fall into the genre of romance have a mystery of some type at the heart of them (although not murder, usually!) and they have a similar focus on people and how they relate to one another. Add in some history and they're particularly interesting (if you choose the right ones, of course).


message 4: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Hj wrote: "What a good idea! I read romances, especially historical romances.

The aspect of British mysteries that I like best is that the how and whodunnit is usually almost unimportant compared to the d..."


I am not a huge fan of romances but there are some major exceptions - love Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer! Do you have a favorite author?


Arpita (BagfullofBooks) (bagfullofbooks) | 157 comments I'm reading a lot of children's literature on the side. " the Borrower's", the Laura Ingalls Wilder series, Winter holiday by Arthur Ransome ( one of my most favorite series ever) and a series of board books with my toddler daughter.


Arpita (BagfullofBooks) (bagfullofbooks) | 157 comments Leslie - I am a big Heyer fan too. Devil's Cub was my favorite. Time to re-read those.


message 7: by Dennis (new)

Dennis Golombek As a former police reporter I usually go to other mysteries or thrillers. I will also delve into history, American Civil War(non-fiction) or if I find something interesting from TV I may pursue that. Recently, for example, on PBS, I saw David Suchet in a two part history of St. Paul. I am now into a bio of him , "Paul in Chains." Might be a good way to finish some Lenten reading.

Best,

Dennis


message 8: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey | 10 comments I also read American mysteries and thrillers.


message 9: by Rupali (new)

Rupali Rotti | 3 comments When I'm not reading mysteries, I'm reading Horror, Dystopian, famous books, or non-fiction. But mysteries is what keeps me busy most of the times.


message 10: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Arpita wrote: "I'm reading a lot of children's literature on the side. " the Borrower's", the Laura Ingalls Wilder series, Winter holiday by Arthur Ransome ( one of my most favorite series ever) and a series of b..."

Last year I went through a bunch of children's & young adult books, but I forgot The Borrowers. I loved those books!!


message 11: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Dennis wrote: "As a former police reporter I usually go to other mysteries or thrillers. I will also delve into history, American Civil War(non-fiction) or if I find something interesting from TV I may pursue tha..."

Jeffrey wrote: "I also read American mysteries and thrillers."

I am reading fewer mysteries these days, but they still make up about 50% of my reading! I read mysteries from America and other nations (if translated into English) - I am about to start off on some Scandinavian mysteries & thrillers. Just got from the library The Keeper of Lost Causes by Jussi Adler-Olsen. This is a new author to me but I've been told that it is the kind of book you can't put down once you start!!


message 12: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Jean-Luke wrote: "I'm currently reading Chronicle of Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. There are elements of mystery but it's definitely not a whodunit, howdonit or whydoneit as these elements are revealed i..."

Jean-Luke - have you read other books by Marquez? I found One Hundred Years of Solitude quite challenging reading...


message 13: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Rupali wrote: "When I'm not reading mysteries, I'm reading Horror, Dystopian, famous books, or non-fiction. But mysteries is what keeps me busy most of the times."

I personally have never been attracted to horror (I get too scared!!), but I really enjoy a good dystopian novel. Who is your favorite dystopia writer?


message 14: by Charlene (new)

Charlene Sonnenborn | 5 comments I just read "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" for a book club. Had I not felt an obligation to at least attempt a club choice, I would never have picked it up, since I avoid books with graphic depictions of violence.
What a surprise! I was hooked from the first paragraph and read all 450 pages in one day. Any violent parts were really limited to a few sentences, and the novel is beautifully written. Even if you prefer "cozies", I recommend that you give "Girl" a chance. I plan to read the rest of the series.


message 15: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Charlene wrote: "I just read "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" for a book club. Had I not felt an obligation to at least attempt a club choice, I would never have picked it up, since I avoid books with graphic dep..."

I'm surprised - I saw the (Swedish) movie and it seemed quite dark. However, I guess it wouldn't have become so famous if it wasn't gripping!


Arpita (BagfullofBooks) (bagfullofbooks) | 157 comments I love Marquez's short stories. The eyes of a blue dog particularly springs to mind. I keep meaning to read 100 years and love in the times...


message 17: by Lorraine (new)

Lorraine (saanichlori) Charlene wrote: "I just read "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" for a book club. Had I not felt an obligation to at least attempt a club choice, I would never have picked it up, since I avoid books with graphic dep..."

I loved this series too - Lisbeth is an incredible character. I think the 2nd book is my favourite in the series - Lisbeth goes on vacation at the very beginning of the novel.


message 18: by Tricia (new)

Tricia | 22 comments I just finished The Matchmaker of Périgord by Julia Stuart , it was such fun. Very light and enjoyable read. Today i'm starting on The Mammy by Brendan O'Carroll , it has some good reviews.


message 19: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Ann wrote: "Arpita wrote: "I'm reading a lot of children's literature on the side. " the Borrower's", the Laura Ingalls Wilder series, Winter holiday by Arthur Ransome ( one of my most favorite series ever) an..."

I am not familiar with this author (Arthur Ransome)… Was I just deprived as a child, or is this one of those British things?


message 20: by Mark (new)

Mark Fortner | 41 comments Jean-Luke I really enjoyed Love in the Time of Cholera, and Love and Other Demons.


message 21: by Mark (new)

Mark Fortner | 41 comments I tend to do a fair amount of work-related reading, so mysteries are a mental vacation for me. I read The Emperor of All Maladies recently which I found very readable but also wish he had spent more time talking about the latest research and emerging methods. I'm currently reading The Molecular Biology of Cancer, and an online book on pancreatic cancer whose name escapes me at the moment.


message 22: by Mark (new)

Mark Fortner | 41 comments Leslie, I didn't read Quo Vadis (saw the movie recently though). I did read, Ben Hur and found it to be surprisingly readable. Interesting that a Civil War soldier would write such a book.


message 23: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Mark wrote: "Leslie, I didn't read Quo Vadis (saw the movie recently though). I did read, Ben Hur and found it to be surprisingly readable. Interesting that a Civil War soldier would write such a book."

I didn't know that Ben Hur was written by a Civil War veteran (I assume he didn't write during the war!). Quo Vadis was written by a Pole and apparently he was using ancient Rome as a way to voice criticism of the government (although I am not seeing that - the story itself is keeping me occupied!). I wonder whether Ben Hur had a similar motivation...

I have seen the Robert Taylor movie of Quo Vadis a few times, and I must admit that while I am reading I visualize Vinicius as Taylor and Lygia as Deborah Kerr :)


message 24: by Leslie (last edited Mar 23, 2013 08:58AM) (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Mark wrote: "Jean-Luke I really enjoyed Love in the Time of Cholera, and Love and Other Demons."

I liked Love in the Time of Cholera much more than Hundred Years of Solitude. The switching of time frames Jean-Luke mentions must be part of Marquez's style - it certainly is a memorable part of Hundred Years

@Arpita - I would begin with Love in the Time…


message 25: by HJ (new)

HJ | 223 comments Ann wrote: "I never much liked Arthur Ransome books as a child. I preferred Malcom Saville. Not sure if anyone remembers him?..."

He was my favourite! I still read them. A wonderful publisher, Girls Gone By, is re-releasing them in their original, unabridged, form with excellent introductions and prefaces. They've also published a good biography. There's also a Malcolm Saville society (though I'm not part of that). Did you ever read his Marston Blaine books? I only found them as an adult; the wonders of the Internet!

Did you also like Monica Edwards? I like the Romney Marsh series in particular, with Tamsin and Meryon. GGB are also re-printing her books.

I love re-reading children's books. I never came across Arthur Ransome as a child but happily read them all in my 30s. But I still love Malcolm Saville best!


message 26: by Trinisse (last edited Mar 23, 2013 02:07PM) (new)

Trinisse | 1 comments If I am not reading a British mystery, then I am reading Australian mysteries. Or a Biography or a paranormal/horror/thriller .


message 27: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments @Trinesse - I only know two Australian mystery writers: Arthur Updike (long-time favorite) and Kerry Greenwood (recently discovered). Do you have any recommendations?


Arpita (BagfullofBooks) (bagfullofbooks) | 157 comments Leslie , I think Arthur Ransome may be a British thing. I grew up reading him and visiting the Lake District. I dont know if I would have loved him as much if I had read him now. Most of the stories are about a group of children going on land and sea adventures. Chartering unknown territory. They seem to me very close to nature and full of the good sense that only small children have :)


Arpita (BagfullofBooks) (bagfullofbooks) | 157 comments Ann : I am onto Malcolm Saville!


Arpita (BagfullofBooks) (bagfullofbooks) | 157 comments Hj wrote: "Ann wrote: "I never much liked Arthur Ransome books as a child. I preferred Malcom Saville. Not sure if anyone remembers him?..."

He was my favourite! I still read them. A wonderful publisher, G..."

The Girls Gone By Publishers also print another favourite series of mine: the Chalet School. I will try to get hold of Monica Edwards.


message 31: by Jen (new)

Jen (mysterywriter19) | 6 comments When I'm not reading a mystery, I'm working on writing one (or rather, several stories concurrently)


message 32: by Melanie (new)

Melanie (melabee) | 8 comments I'm usually reading history or non-fiction when I'm not reading a mystery. One of the books I'm currently reading is Leonardo and the Last Supper by Ross King by Ross King.


message 33: by Millicent (new)

Millicent (millicentbogert) | 3 comments I just finished a collection of Sheridan Le Fanu stories that I thought would scratch my recurring itch for Victoriana, especially the creepy part of that culture/historical period. They were ok, but disappointing in that the shape and resolution of the stories was evident at the start -- part of why I like mysteries is the unexpected endings. I also just read "Ragnarok" by A.S. Byatt, so it may be time next for my other favorite category, contemporary literary fiction.


message 34: by Leslie (last edited Mar 23, 2013 09:47PM) (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Millicent wrote: "I just finished a collection of Sheridan Le Fanu stories that I thought would scratch my recurring itch for Victoriana, especially the creepy part of that culture/historical period. They were ok, b..."

I have never read any Byatt, but she is the April author of the month for another of my groups. I am planning on reading Possession, have you read this?

@Arpita, do you know whether Ransome's books are available in our digital library?

@Jen - good luck! I admire people who are creative (I am not).

@Melanie - Is the King book about da Vinci's work on the Last Supper, or a biography?


message 35: by Millicent (new)

Millicent (millicentbogert) | 3 comments Leslie wrote: "Millicent wrote: "I just finished a collection of Sheridan Le Fanu stories that I thought would scratch my recurring itch for Victoriana, especially the creepy part of that culture/historical perio..."
Yes! Possession is one of my absolute all time favorites -- you have a real treat ahead of you!


message 36: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Millicent wrote: "Yes! Possession is one of my absolute all time favorites -- you have a real treat ahead of you! ..."

Yay!! My library just e-mailed me that my copy has arrived, so I will pick it Monday :)


message 37: by HJ (new)

HJ | 223 comments Ann wrote: "Yes I read a lot of books by Monica Edwards. Glad they are reprinting. I loved the Chalet School books too. ..."

GGB are re-printing those too, and other old girls' school series.


Arpita (BagfullofBooks) (bagfullofbooks) | 157 comments Leslie : the Arthur Ransome paperbacks are available through our library network ( c/w mars). I think you are part of a different network though. I would start with Swallows and Amazons. Random house UK are publishing the books in a wonderful new format. I picked up their edition of winter holiday from amazon us.
I saw a dramatized version of Possession on Netflix starring Jennifer Ehle which I rather liked.


message 39: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments I am listening to the audiobook of Tears of the Giraffe by Alexander McCall Smith. Less mystery & more about personal life in this one so far. I had liked the stuff about her office in the first one, so I am missing that.


message 40: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Jean-Luke wrote: "Leslie wrote: "I am listening to the audiobook of Tears of the Giraffe by Alexander McCall Smith. Less mystery & more about personal life in this one so far. I had liked the stuff about her office..."

Too bad because it was a decent premise.


message 41: by Tricia (new)

Tricia | 22 comments Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King Hard to put down!


Arpita (BagfullofBooks) (bagfullofbooks) | 157 comments I find many of the McCall Smith's less mystery and more other issues but I don't really read them for the mystery aspect. Currently reading 44 Scotland street which originally came out daily in the Scotsman. I think it is a wonderful thing to bring the newspaper daily read back in fashion.


message 43: by Sonali (new)

Sonali V | 129 comments I just finished reading Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451.Loved it,want to read some more of his long novels,I've only read his short stories.Currently I'm switching between William Gibson's Necromancer & Yongey Rimpoche's The joy of living- two books completely different in mood & language.
I love Heyer's romances; my favourites are These old shades & Powder & Patch.And of course Beauvallet.Don't know how many times I've read them.


message 44: by Sonali (new)

Sonali V | 129 comments Arpita, I enjoy the humane eye McCall Smith casts over the occupants of his city, who are individuals yet universal in character too, isn't it?


message 45: by Susan (new)

Susan I am a bit late to this discussion but, as a child, I LOVED Malcolm Saville. What a charming man he was too - I once wrote him a letter as I couldn't find one book to complete my series (this is pre internet, when your only chance of finding a book not in the shops was to order it from W H Smith's or somewhere) and I wanted to know if it would be republished and he sent me a lovely letter and a signed copy of the book I was missing!


message 46: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Sonali wrote: "I love Heyer's romances; my favourites are These old shades & Powder & Patch.And of course Beauvallet.Don't know how many times I've read them..."

Hehehe... I think I have read all the Heyers that I own (30 romances & 11 mysteries) at least 4 times and some more than that!! I must admit Beauvallet isn't one of my favorites but maybe I should try again!


Arpita (BagfullofBooks) (bagfullofbooks) | 157 comments Yes Sonali, I enjoy McCall Smith's introspective style. Gives you much to ponder. Also his eye for small detail appeals to me. In the Edinburgh books I particularly enjoy his frequent references to the Scottish artists and writers. Makes me feel I have learnt a little about the local culture after reading them.


message 48: by HJ (new)

HJ | 223 comments Susan wrote: "I am a bit late to this discussion but, as a child, I LOVED Malcolm Saville. What a charming man he was too - I once wrote him a letter as I couldn't find one book to complete my series (this is p..."

That sounds just like the man, so far as I can judge from reading his biography etc.. And I think that one can get a good sense of an author from reading his books; he always seemed a thoroughly good person.

Have you re-read any of the books as an adult? I still enjoy them, and because they're so well based in actual places I've been to see some of them (the Long Mynd and Rye, for example).


message 49: by HJ (new)

HJ | 223 comments Leslie wrote: I am not a huge fan of romances but there are some major exceptions - love Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer! Do you have a favorite author? ..."

Leslie - I've only just seen that you replied to me. Sorry I missed it! Heyer is my first love in romances, and I've re-read them lots of times. I don't like the heavy historicals (An Infamous Army, The Conqueror, etc.). My favourites are The Reluctant Widow, The Talisman Ring, The Grand Sophy and Frederica, but it's difficult to choose. I like her crime books too, but I don't think they're as good.

I do like Jane Austen, too. Another author I really rate is Joanna Bourne. But there are so many!


message 50: by Leslie (new)

Leslie | 1663 comments Hj wrote: "Leslie wrote: I am not a huge fan of romances but there are some major exceptions - love Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer! Do you have a favorite author? ..."

Leslie - I've only just seen that you ..."


Your favorites are mine too - my top favorite varies with time and mood - recently it has been Sylvester

I am unfamiliar with Joanne Bourne, I will have to keep my eyes open for her next time I'm at the library. I just finished a pretty good one by Anna Willman called An Unmarried Lady.


« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8
back to top