1 July 2010

Best Crime Fiction so far 2010 - what's yours?

What are the best crime fiction books you've read in the first 6 months of this year?

Oh yes, I know we are only half way through the year!

Leave me a comment with your best 5-10 books - they can be published in any year. I'll do things with the resultant list and feed them back into my blog in a couple of weeks. You have a week to leave your comment!
By all means, if you want to add a post on your blog about your best reads, feel free to use the image to the right.

My best reads so far:
BLEED FOR ME, Michael Robotham
SKELETON HILL, Peter Lovesey
TRUTH, Peter Temple
THE FIFTH WOMAN, Henning Mankell
DEVIL'S PEAK, Deon Meyer
A CARRION DEATH, Michael Stanley
THE MAN FROM BEIJING, Henning Mankell 
THE BRASS VERDICT, Michael Connelly
HYPOTHERMIA, Arnaldur Indridason


Kay said...

Well, let's see. My best 10 mysteries that I've read so far this year are (in no particular order):

1. The Case of the Missing Servant - Tarquin Hall
2. The Crossing Places - Elly Griffiths
3. The Janus Stone - Elly Griffiths
4. Wife of the Gods - Kwei Quartey
5. Iron Lake - William Kent Krueger
6. Rolling Thunder - Chris Grabenstein
7. Sprinkle With Murder - Jenn McKinlay
8. Haunted Ground - Erin Hart
9. Murder is Binding - Lorna Barrett
10. Death Wore White - Jim Kelly

Definitely in my top 10 for the year, but not exactly a mystery is SO COLD THE RIVER by Michael Koryta. If you haven't tried this one, you ought to.

Kerrie said...

Kay, I have only read DEATH WORE WHITE!
I've just begun to see Elly Griffiths listed here, so obviously you think she is someone to look out for.
Is SO COLD THE RIVER crime fiction?

Jose Ignacio Escribano said...

Kerrie great list. Have read so far only four on your list, currently reading the fifth and have another four to-read.

Kerrie said...

So what about your list Jose Ignacio?

Kay said...

Kerrie, SO COLD THE RIVER is by a crime fiction writer, Michael Koryta. However, it has some supernatural elements. It is a departure for him, but I thought it was a great book. Very well written. There is definitely a mystery involved, but not your typical crime book. The author's other books are more traditional.

My list included books from all parts of the mystery spectrum - cozies, traditional, humorous, and more hard boiled.

Deb said...

I'm a bit ambivalent about my list because I've read several series (by Kate Atkinson, Susan Hill, and Tana French) that I wish could count as one book, but I'll try to be true to the ten-book rule. So far this year my favorites have been:

Don Chaon - AWAIT YOUR REPLY: I finished this book on January 2 of this year and I do not expect to read a better book in 2010.


Dorothy B. Hughes - IN A LONELY PLACE.

Kate Atkinson - CASE HISTORIES: But I could just as easily have chosen ONE GOOD TURN or WHEN WILL THERE BE GOOD NEWS?

Susan Hill - THE PURE IN HEART: As with Kate Atkinson, I could easily have chosen two other books in this series, THE RISK OF DARKNESS or THE VOWS OF SILENCE. (Interesting, I did not like the first book in the series, THE VARIOUS HAUNTS OF MEN, and would not have continued reading them had it not been for Bernadette's comments on her blog. I'm glad I read the rest of the books in the series. I found them to be so much better than the first.)

Judy Blundell - WHAT I SAW AND HOW I LIED: This is a YA murder-mystery set in the years just after WWII. I usually don't read much YA fiction--finding it too broad--but this was excellent.

Tana French - IN THE WOODS

Tana French - THE LIKENESS: I just couldn't decide between this and IN THE WOODS, so I have to list them both.

Elizabeth Hand - GENERATION LOSS: A photographer who had momentary fame during New York's punk scene visits the Maine home of her mentor, some 30 years later.

Ruth Rendell - THE BRIDESMAID: I thought I had read all of Rendell's books, but this one was new to me. Published in 1989, it's very much in the "Barbara Vine" style of psychological suspense.

Jose Ignacio Escribano said...

Oooops, sorry.
In no particular order:
- THE DARKEST ROOM by Johan Theorin
- NEMESIS by Jo Nesbo
- THE MIND’S EYE by Hakan Nesser
- SILENCE OF THE GRAVE by Arnaldur Indridason
- THE SAVAGE ALTAR (aka Sun Storm) by Asa Larsson
- DEAD POINT by Peter Temple
- DEATH RITES by Alicia Giménez-Bartlett
- HAVANA GOLD by Leonardo Padura
- WATER-BLUE EYES by Domingo Villar

LauraRoot said...

Queenpin by Megane Abbot

Entanglement by Zygmunt Miloszewski

Trail of Blood by S J Rozan

Blacklands by Belinada Bauer

Earth Hums in B Flat by Mari Strachan

Echoes from the Dead by Johann Theorin

Year of the Dog by Henry Chang

Victory Square by Olen Steinhauer

Blue Lightening by Ann Cleeves

Red April by Santiago Roncagliolo

Vanda Symon said...

My favourtites so far are (and in no particular order)

And Only to Deceive by Tasha Alexander
Engleby by Sebastian Faulks
Hunting Blind by Paddy Richardson
Captured by Neil Cross
Murder in Mesopotamia by Agatha Christie
Artists in Crime by Ngaio Marsh
The Darkest Room by Johan Theorin

BooksPlease said...

The best crime fiction books I've read this year so far, in no particular order are:

Black and Blue by Ian Rankin
The Hollow by Agatha Christie
The Franchise Affair by Josephine Tey
A Fatal Inversion by Barbara Vine
A Loyal Character Dancer by Qui Xiaolong
Raven Black by Ann Cleeves

Becky said...

I read a lot of different genre's... so far my most favorite crime fiction this year would be Harry Taylor's latest book, "Rogues, Riches and Retribution." In my opinion it was somehow different than the normal run of the mill murder stories.

Cathy said...

(1) The Chalk Circle Man by Fred Vargas
(2) Company of Liars by Karen Maitland
(3) The Darkest Room by Johan Theorin
(4) City of Shadows by Ariana Franklin
(5) Blood of the Wicked by Leighton Gage

Whoa... I don't think any of my top five are written by Americans!

Rob Kitchin said...

In no particular order:

Expiration Date by Duane Swierczynski
The Ones You Do by Daniel Woodrell
The Grave in Gaza by Matt Beynon Rees
The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death by Charlie Huston
Killer by Dave Zeltserman
The Postman Always Rings Twice by James M Cain
The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett

Barbara said...

Here's what I posted over at 4MA:

Johan Theorin / THE DARKEST ROOM
As in his first book, characters come first for Theorin, setting second, and then there's a plot, but it's happy to modestly hang about in the background, occasionally brushing past you with a touch that raises goosebumps. I found this book deeply satisfying in its quiet way.

A strangely sweet, funny, profane book with a narrator who is a complete jerk because ... well, he has his reasons, and tailing along as he works out his relationship with the world is only marred by Huston's unwillingness to use common punctuation.

I am not sure exactly when I read this, but it was published in March. It's a complex and angry book about immigration and the war on drugs. When a young musician's uncle is deported to El Salvador, he goes to bring him back, a harrowing journey where what's bad gets worse and worse. Beautiful writing, but some of the violence was hard to take.

Less lushly overwritten than her first book, but every bit as talented. A narcotics cop can't help but become involved when a body is found in a building on the block where he grew up - which may be the body of a girl who he thought had left him in the lurch. A wonderful portrait of a family and a single block in Dublin, in which a whole universe is swarming.

A wonderful book - very moving and absorbing story about Rose's past as a bar girl in Bangkok. It knocked my socks off, way off, which is ten times better than two thumbs up, way up. Happy toes!

and a sixth one that I thought of later - Jess Walter's FINANCIAL LIVES OF THE POETS. I really love his writing style, which reminds me of Tim O'Brien. This was funny and touching and totally nailed the present moment. It's about a hapless journalist whose web business failed, who is about to lose his house and is afraid to mention it to his wife, and takes up drug dealing - ineptly. Very funny and touching in a manic way.

Barbara said...


Johan Theorin / THE DARKEST ROOM





Bernadette in Australia said...

Not easy now, I'm not looking forward to having to do this with more books under the belt in December

A Thousand Cuts, Simon Lelic
Awakening, S J Bolton
Blacklands, Belinda Bauer
Hypothermia, Arnaldur Indridason
Midnight Fugue, Reginald Hill
Mistress of the Art of Death, Ariana Franklin
The Darkest Room, Johan Theorin
The Redemption of Alexander Seaton, Shona MacLean
Truth, Peter Temple
U is for Undertow, Sue Grafton

Uriah Robinson said...

Here are my top reads of the year so far.

The Wings of the Sphinx: Andrea Camilleri
Needle in a Haystack: Ernesto Mallo
Hypothermia; Arnaldur Indridason
The Snowman: Jo Nesbo
Bad Boy: Peter Robinson
The Turnaround: George Pelecanos
The Water'sEdge: Karin Fossum
The Arsenic Labyrinth: Martin Edwards
Midnight Fugue:Reginald Hill
The White Gallows: Rob Kitchin

Margot Kinberg said...

Hi, Kerrie - Here is my list of ten books I've thoroughly enjoyed thus far this year:

The Serpent Pool – Martin Edwards
Last Rituals – Yrsa Sigurðardóttir
My Soul to Take – Yrsa Sigurðardóttir
A Question of Belief – Donna Leon
A Game of Sorrows – Shona MacLean
The Paris Enigma – Pablo de Santis
Huge – James W. Fuerst
Shatter – Michael Robotham
About Face – Donna Leon
Something Wicked – E.X. Ferrars

Maxine said...

I finally got round to posting my selection http://petrona.typepad.com/petrona/2010/07/best-crime-fiction-so-far-in-2010-whats-yours.html , which is:
Truth by Peter Temple

Gunshot Road by Adrian Hyland

Water-Blue Eyes by Domingo Villar

Winterland by Alan Glynn (review t/c)

The Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths

Rupture (A Thousand Cuts) by Simon Lelic

There are some great suggestions in these comments, and also quite a few new ones in the comments at the Petrona post. Kerrie - maybe you could write a round-up post of everyone's selections, to see if there are any commonalities?! (Even though the books chosen are "read" rather than "published" this year, I think several people including me tend to read books if I see reviews on others' blogs, so there may be a few that have been read over the same few months and acquired several "votes" each.

gautami tripathy said...

I got posting mine today. I know I am late!

Sworn to Silence by Linda
Venom by Joan Brady
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie--Graphic Novel
The Girl With a Dragon Tattoo by Steig Larsson
The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson
Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith
The Rule Book by Rob Kitchin
Saving Max by Antoinette van Heugten
The Likeness by Tana French
Inside Out by Barry Eisler

Kerrie said...

Never too late Gautami
I'm about to aggregate the list!

Alex B said...

There are three that are must-reads, stories I couldn't put down.

Saints Of New York, RJ Ellory
Dead Like You, Peter James
With Cold Hearts, David Hurst

With Cold Hearts was my best crime mystery novel of the year, about a serial killer who targets crime authors and their readers.


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