It's a beautiful sunny winter's day at the farmette. Not too cold. Will likely try and get out for a snowshoe later.
It's been a while since I did a book review, and since I've read most of my Christmas bounty, I thought I'd make a few recommendations.
A World of Curiosities is Louise Penny's latest. What I like most about her books (and I've read all of them) is the richness of the characters and cleverness of the plots. And the lovely setting, which is in Three Pines, a small village in Quebec in the middle of nowhere south of Montreal.
In this one, we get to find out how Chief Inspector Gamache and his now-son-in-law Jean-Guy Beauvoir met. Jean-Guy was a wet-behind-the-ears officer in the Sureté de Quebec and Gamache was already head of homicide. The story unfolds with flashbacks back to the initial meeting, their first murder together and its aftermath. The aftermath is what makes things interesting because old hurts come back to haunt them all. The gang's all there in Three Pines - Ruth the old curmudgeonly poet and her duck Rosie, unkempt artist Clara, bistro owners Gabri and Olivier and Myrna, the bookstore owner. And, of course Reine-Marie, Gamache's wife. Highly recommend.
Ian Rankin is another author for whom I'm a huge fan, and have read all his books. In the latest, Rebus, his main character, has retired but can't seem to keep his nose out of police business in Edinburgh. An old rivalry/connection with Big Ger Cafferty, a notorious criminal threatens to make Rebus' life miserable and a police station known for its not-so-ethical procedures figures highly.
Rebus finds himself in a bit of a pickle when some of his close-to-the-edge of the law actions when he was an active cop catch up with him. As usual, it's a ripper and again, highly recommended.
Anthony Horowitz is a writer I really enjoy. Just started reading him a couple of years ago, and I'm hooked.
When I found out that he wrote for the television series Foyle's War for 16 years, the lightbulb went off, because I love that program.
Since then, he's done a lot of different kinds of writing, and in this book, he's the main character who's also the prime suspect for the murder of a theatre critic. Harriet Thorsby is probably the most cruel, unlikeable person on the planet. Even her daughter can't stand her. So there's lots of possibilities for suspects. But almost everything points to Anthony, who has to go into the slammer. His sometimes-partner in criminal investigations, Hawthorne, is initially reluctant to come to his aid, but figures out a way to get him out of jail for 48 hours so they can find out the actual killer. Great fun.
Finally, I've just borrowed Richard Osman's 'The Bullet That Missed' from my good friend Pat. We have an ongoing mutual library in which we exchange mostly murder mysteries.
We both relish the Thursday Murder Club, which is Osman's group of seniors in a home who get together to solve mysteries. It helps that Elizabeth is a former spy and that Ibrahim is a retired psychologist. Joyce is their conscience and diarist – and is much craftier than she lets on. Ron is a firebrand leftie who used to head up a labour union.
I've read the earlier two books in the series, and can't wait to see how this one works out.
So that's it. Murder and mayhem to keep you warm during the frigid winter days and nights. Until next week.
Gratuitous cat photo courtesy of Hobbes (r) and Wilma. She LOVES it when he gives her snuggles. BTW - they're both fixed, so there will be no 'accidents'.