22 February 2008

Books to Look For

Every now and again I check Australian online sites for what they are listing in crime fiction and I've found a couple I haven't yet got hold of.

Over at Angus and Robertson Australia, they list the Top 5 Bestsellers for Crime Fiction. Not sure what the time frame for this list is, perhaps the last week ??

The books listed are

TRIPTYCH by Karin Slaughter. When I reviewed TRIPTYCH in 2006 I gave it 4.6

THE HARD WAY by Lee Child. My review of THE HARD WAY was also favourable with a rating of 4.7

BREAK NO BONES by Kathy Reichs. I wasn't as impressed with BREAK NO BONES, but perhaps I was feeling a bit over-Reiched. I gave it 4.3

END IN TEARS by Ruth Rendell
This one didn't make it to being a published review but here is what I said in my database:
In the early hours of the morning George Marshalson is waiting anxiously for his young daughter to come home. His discovery of her body at dawn not far from the house is the beginning of a new case for Reg Wexford and the Kingsmarkham CID team. Neither Reg nor his assistant Mike Burden are getting any younger and both are a bit old-fashioned in their attitudes and their policing methods. In this, the 20th book in the Wexford series that began in 1964, award winning author Ruth Rendell introduces the new face of policing in Britain in the persons of the latest additions to the team, Bal and Hannah. And again Rendell gives this book a contemporary setting by weaving into it a theme that has been of world-wide community concern. The Wexford family interest continues too when daughter Sylvia becomes pregnant by her ex-husband.
My rating: 4.8

I read a blurb about this one but it didn't grab me.

Over at Dymocks Australia, it is not so easy to find a similar list but the author of the month has been Alexander McCall-Smith with the book THE GOOD HUSBAND OF ZEBRA DRIVE listed.
I loved this one and gave it 5.0. My database entry:
#8 in the No. 1 LADIES DETECTIVE AGENCY series. After I read the previous title in this series, I thought perhaps it was coming to an end; that McCall Smith had no more to tell, could do no more with the material. How wrong I was! With THE GOOD HUSBAND OF ZEBRA DRIVE the series swings upward to another peak. Maters come to a point between that traditionally built lady Precious Ramotswe and her secretary Mma Makutsi when the latter takes the afternoon off to do some shopping when she is supposed to be minding the office. Mma Makutsi decides to resign and to look for a new job. Meanwhile, when Mma Makutsi was absent, Precious Ramotswe’s husband, Mr. J L. B. Matekoni interviewed a client, and he tells his wife he would like to follow that case through, carrying out the investigation himself. A cousin working in the administration of the public hospital in Mochudi comes to see Precious Ramotswe about some unexplained deaths at the hospital, so once again the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency has its hands full. There is something about reading these stories that is rather like meeting up with old friends. But don’t underestimate McCall Smith as a writer. The characters are gently but so graphically drawn, with touches of humour, and situations you can imagine witnessing. And McCall Smith makes use of an urban legend that I’m sure you’ll recognise. There’s no sex, no violence, rarely any blood and gore in these novels. And yet there is murder, mystery and crime, just enough to challenge the reader’s little grey cells.

Dymocks are highlighting THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO by Stieg Larsson which I have heard good things about but still haven't read. (and they've cut $6 off the price of the trade paperback too)
From their site:
Forty years ago, Harriet Vanger disappeared off the secluded island owned and inhabited by the powerful Vanger family. There was no corpse, no witnesses, no evidence. But her uncle, Henrik, is convinced that she was murdered by someone in her own family - the deeply dysfunctional Vanger clan. Disgraced journalist Mikael Blomqvist is hired to investigate, but when he links Harriet's disappearance to a string of gruesome murders from forty years ago, he needs a competent assistant and he gets one: computer hacker Lisbeth Salander - a tattooed, truculent, angry girl who rides a motorbike like a Hell's Angel and handles makeshift weapons with the skill born of remorseless rage.This unlikely pair form a fragile bond as they delve into the sinister past of this island-bound, tightly-knit family. But the Vangers are a secretive lot and Mikael and Lisbeth are about to find out just how far they're prepared to go to protect themselves and each other


Queenie said...

My you are a busy lady, thanks for your visit to my blog. I think I have all Agatha's books, although some have been loaned out, and still haven't made there way home yet (don't that annoy you?).

Kerrie said...

There's review of THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO in this weekend's Sydney Morning Herald.
Says it is a huge 578 pages and part of a trilogy.
Certainly seems to be taking the market by storm

Maxine Clarke said...

I agree with you on Triptych and the Jack Reacher. I very much enjoyed Triptych. Two-minute rule by Robert Crais is a stand-alone thriller with a similar theme (redemption of long-term prisoner released at end of sentence) - shorter, though, and leaner. Not better, just different.

I stopped reading Kathy R at about book 4, I just found them far too slow and tedious, and am not interested enough in technical details of autopsies (of long-dead people or bits thereof), which seemed to me to be their main pulling power, as the relationship between Tempe and that weird boyfriend (or maybe it is her who is emotionally weird) never seems to get anywhere.

I have not read End in Tears but it is on my pile and eagerly looked forward to. I loved Girl with Dragon Tattoo (my review is on Euro Crime) but I think it is not a hugely massively amount better than other high-quality Scandinavian crime fiction. As I've mentioned before (sorry if I am repeating myself) Snow Storm (aka Savage Altar) by Asa Larsson (no relation) is as good and half the length. Also Lisa Marklund's books cover similar ground (especially Paradise), I love her. Yes, GWDT is good, even very good, but not head and shoulders above some of these other authors/titles. Beautiful cover to the book, though. (Boy, could it have done with a map. And a less deliberately misleading family tree.)


Blog Widget by LinkWithin