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The Moth Catcher > Question #1: Ann Cleeves

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message 1: by [deleted user] (last edited Oct 02, 2017 03:28PM) (new)

From the Goodreads author page: "Ann is the author of the books behind ITV's VERA, now in it's third series, and the BBC's SHETLAND, aired in December 2012. Ann's DI Vera Stanhope series of books is set in Northumberland and features the well loved detective along with her partner Joe Ashworth. Ann's Shetland series bring us DI Jimmy Perez, investigating in the mysterious, dark, and beautiful Shetland Islands."

Have you read any of Ann Cleeves' novels, or seen the televison series? What are your impressions? What do you like about them?

Ann Cleeves will give a talk at an Oakville Public Library event on Monday, October 16th. We hope you can join us! Details are listed below under "Events."

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message 2: by Susan (new)

Susan (susanopl) | 472 comments Mod
The Moth Catcher is my first Ann Cleeves reading experience. I have been struck by how British it is! Some of the language is perplexing - she uses terms that we would not in Canada, and it's quite charming to learn about them. The book immediately brought to mind Louise Penny's novels in that they also take place in a very small town where all the characters know one another. They also both tend to be about just one murder, so they are gentle murder mysteries. So far, I'm finding Vera quite entertaining. She is certainly a unique protaganist!


message 3: by Maureen (new)

Maureen B. | 212 comments Susan wrote: "The Moth Catcher is my first Ann Cleeves reading experience. I have been struck by how British it is! Some of the language is perplexing - she uses terms that we would not in Canada..."

It's my first time reading a book by Ann Cleeves as well and have to admit, I enjoyed it as a long-ago whodunnit fan. I didn't find Vera all that likeable in the early pages but it was an interesting premise. I also was feeling some sympathy for her, a woman whose own creator repeatedly referred to her size, social awkwardness and horrible wardrobe.

It also helped that Cleeves was also listed as the writer of the "Shetland" series, some of which we watched on Netflix. In that, a small island where the suspects are necessarily limited, everyone lives in everyone else's pocket and the small police force has to solve murders that were probably done by someone they know. Settings are gorgeous although a bit chilly-looking.

And, having family in nearby Yorkshire, I did enjoy the dialogue of Moth Catchers--some of those foreign words and the cadence can definitely throw you!


message 4: by Shirley (new)

Shirley Mytnowych | 57 comments Mod
I am really enjoying my first experience reading an Ann Cleeves novel. I have not seen any of the TV series either. My family originates from England and some of the slang brings back memories. Even the word "mucky" to describe Vera's car reminded me of my mom telling us we had mucky faces. I love Vera's character as it reminds me of a female version of Columbo. I find myself getting interested in the characters and looking for clues as to what really happened. I'm about half finished the book.


message 5: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Patrick | 57 comments Mod
i am also a first time reader of Ann Cleeves and i am really enjoying it. Vera is a great character and the plot slowly unfolds, it doesn't hit you in the face.


message 6: by Sheila (new)

Sheila (sheilaj) Hi folks. I am Sheila from Illinois, USA. I just saw a tweet about this so decided to look you all up.

I have not read any of Ann Cleeves books either but have watched all the Shetland episodes on Netflix and loved them all.

I also just this past week found out I could use the Hoopla app at my home library to check out the Vera episodes so just watched the first one.

I am definitely hooked. I really like that Vera ISN'T a beautiful twenty something, She comes off as caustic and not particularly interested in other peoples feelings. I like Shirley's comparrison of Vera as a female version of Columbo.

I just checked the audiobook of The Moth Catcher out of the library, so I can get started listening to it tonight.

I love the somewhat bleak and beautiful settings of these books and hope to someday visit the area.

Oh BTW, I am thrilled to find this group and hope to be an active participant.


message 7: by Susan (new)

Susan (susanopl) | 472 comments Mod
Sheila wrote: "Hi folks. I am Sheila from Illinois, USA. I just saw a tweet about this so decided to look you all up.

I have not read any of Ann Cleeves books either but have watched all the Shetland episodes on..."


We're thrilled to have you join us, too, Sheila. It's so great that we can connect with readers outside our geographic area. You have convinced me to watch the Vera episodes. I'm really intrigued to see what the television Vera looks like. I think Ann Cleeves is a bit hard on Vera regarding her physical appearance, but I agree it's refreshing that she isn't a glamorous 20-something.

On Monday, October 16th, Ann Cleeves will be presenting her latest novel at an Oakville Public Library event. Please stay tuned for details of her visit!


message 8: by Susan (new)

Susan (susanopl) | 472 comments Mod
Maureen wrote: "Susan wrote: "The Moth Catcher is my first Ann Cleeves reading experience. I have been struck by how British it is! Some of the language is perplexing - she uses terms that we would..."
I agree, Maureen, that Vera isn't all that likeable early on. I have found my relationship with her to be somewhat complicated, not helped by the fact that Ann Cleeves is very hard on her. This seems like an unusual approach by an author - usually the protaganist is likeable. Think of Armand Gamache in Louise Penny's novels.

So glad you're enjoying us again, Maureen!


message 9: by Sheila (new)

Sheila (sheilaj) I've got a question about how this discussion works. Do we read a certain # of chapters by a certain date and then comment with spoilers or what?

I also love the Three Pines series and look on those people as family after 13 books. I just finished Glass Houses which is always bitter sweet since it is a long time until the next one.

Thanks for the nice welcome Susan.


message 10: by Vicki (new)

Vicki Im a little perplexed by how this works too. Thanks for asking Sheila!


message 11: by Susan (new)

Susan (susanopl) | 472 comments Mod
Sheila wrote: "I've got a question about how this discussion works. Do we read a certain # of chapters by a certain date and then comment with spoilers or what?

I also love the Three Pines series and look on tho..."

We're so pleased to hear you're a fan of Louise Penny. She certainly has loyal followers and is such a lovely person who really appreciates her readers. We're very proud of her here in Canada!

We don't dictate how far along our readers should be at any time in a given month. With an online book club, it's just too hard to know who can get a copy of a book and read along with us. We try to post our upcoming reads a few months in advance so our members have time to read ahead, especially if they're borrowing library copies of a book. You'll find that we rarely feature new bestsellers as soon as they are published, because we want to give our members time to secure a copy and read the book. That's why this month, for example, we're reading Ann Cleeves' second most recent novel rather than her new release, The Seagull.

We read classics now and then. If you haven't read a book recently, we welcome your comments even if your memory isn't perfect. We find our favourites stick with us and we never lack for opinions!

Our questions usually start out general and then become more specific as the month goes on, so that readers have time to catch up with us if necessary. We are very careful not to give too much away, and will include spoiler alerts when discussing key plot points.

Please let us know if you have any other questions. And once again, welcome to our group.


message 12: by Sheila (new)

Sheila (sheilaj) Thanks Susan. I appreciate the info.


message 13: by Susan (new)

Susan (susanopl) | 472 comments Mod
Vicki wrote: "Im a little perplexed by how this works too. Thanks for asking Sheila!"

Welcome to our group, Vicki. Thanks so much for joining our discussion. I hope my response to Sheila answers your questions. If not, let us know. We look forward to hearing more from you.


message 14: by Vicki (new)

Vicki I got a very nice copy of The Moth yesterday and look forward to getting into it. This is my first Ann Cleeves book and I am a new to this genre. I have dabbled in Tess Gerritson, Three Pines and PD James ( whose biography is fascinating!)
Having said that I am familiar with the TV series. I like a strong female protagonist, flaws notwithstanding. I like her no-nonsense approach and her leadership skills. Sometimes seeing the tv show first puts that actress in my mind rather than imagining her. But a small criticism at best!


message 15: by Susan (new)

Susan (susanopl) | 472 comments Mod
Vicki wrote: "I got a very nice copy of The Moth yesterday and look forward to getting into it. This is my first Ann Cleeves book and I am a new to this genre. I have dabbled in Tess Gerritson, Three Pines and P..."
I hope you enjoy the book, Vicki. I have only seen still photos of the actress who plays Vera, and she seems like a good choice. Let us know what you think after you've read enough to form an opinion.


message 16: by Sheila (new)

Sheila (sheilaj) Vicki. I hope you have the right book. The Moth is an entirely different story from the Moth Catcher.


message 17: by Vicki (new)

Vicki Thanks for the check. I do indeed have The Moth Catcher.


message 18: by Allison (new)

Allison | 396 comments So, excited to meet Ann Cleeves on Monday night! I think the library has only a few tickets left if any of you are thinking of coming out to the event.


message 19: by Sheila (new)

Sheila (sheilaj) Allison is the library streaming her visit for us out of towners?


message 20: by Allison (new)

Allison | 396 comments Sheila wrote: "Allison is the library streaming her visit for us out of towners?"

Such a great idea, Sheila! As far as I know we are not, unfortunately. But if by chance we do end up doing something, I will certainly let you know. In any case, I will pass on this suggestion to a few key people here at OPL.


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