Book Club is back
It was so wonderful to see so many people at our first Book Club meeting since February.
Our theme for last month was cosy mysteries. Stories in this genre usually take place in a small town or village where the suspects all know each other. They tend to focus around an amateur sleuth trying to solve the mystery or murder. Most murders take place off stage, and are often relatively bloodless.
The August theme is poetry or novels written in verse.
Our next meeting will be Thursday 27 August at Marlborough District Library (Blenheim) starting at 6.30 pm.
Below are some of the cosy mysteries we discussed at our last meeting.
A Bali Conspiracy Most Foul by Shamini Flint
Welcome to Bali, where violence, intrigue, and infidelity are all part of a day's work for Inspector Singh. Inspector Singh, everyone's favourite portly and wheezing homicide detective, is still recovering from his last case when terrorists set off a bomb on the neighbouring island of Bali. With Singapore's anti-terrorist team busy defending the home front, Inspector Singh's bosses ship him to Bali to assist with the investigation. Unfortunately, Inspector Singh has as much experience with terrorism as he does with proper diet and exercise – none. When the police find a skull fragment of a man who was killed before the bomb went off, Inspector Singh is assigned to the case. With Bronwyn Taylor, a peppy and eternally optimistic Australian cop, at his side, Singh's investigation leads him to the wife of the murdered man, and her group of entitled, expatriate friends. The murder seems like an open-and-shut case – that is, until Bronwyn and Singh realize that this crowd is riddled with enough cheating and discontent to fill out a soap opera. This simple murder is quickly becoming more complicated than Singh could have imagined. And how does it all tie into the act of terrorism that brought him to Bali in the first place? Set in an exotic locale and starring an unforgettable cast of characters, this second mystery featuring the utterly lovable Inspector Singh is exciting, funny, and suspenseful, with an ending that even the most seasoned detective couldn't predict.
Homicide in Hardcover by Kate Carlisle
Brooklyn Wainwright is a skilled surgeon. Sure, her patients might smell like mould and have spines made of leather, but no ailing book is going to die on her watch. The same can't be said of Abraham Karastovsky, Brooklyn's friend and former employer. On the eve of the celebration for his latest book restoration, Brooklyn finds her mentor lying a pool of his own blood. With his final breath, Abraham leaves Brooklyn a cryptic message, 'Remember the devil, ' and smiles as she takes possession of his priceless, and supposedly cursed, copy of Goethe's Faust.
The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith
The beloved first novel in The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, tells the story of the delightfully cunning and enormously engaging Precious Ramotswe, who is drawn to her profession to “help people with problems in their lives.” Immediately upon setting up shop in a small storefront in Gaborone, Mma Ramotswe is hired to track down a missing husband, uncover a con man, and follow a wayward daughter. But the case that tugs at her heart–and lands her in danger–is that of a missing eleven-year-old boy who may have been snatched by witch doctors.
Case Histories by Kate Atkinson
The scene is set in Cambridge, with three case histories from the past: a young child who mysteriously disappeared from a tent in her back garden; an unidentified man in a yellow jumper who marched into an office and slashed a young girl through the throat; and a young woman found by the police sitting in her kitchen next to the body of her husband, an axe buried in his head. Jackson Brodie, a private investigator and former police detective, is quietly contemplating life as a divorced father when he is flung into the midst of these resurrected old crimes. As he starts his investigations Jackson has the sinister feeling that someone is following him. As he begins to unearth secrets that have remained hidden for many years, he is assailed by his former wife's plan to take his young daughter away to live in New Zealand, and his stalker becomes increasingly malevolent and dangerous. In digging into the past Jackson seems to have unwittingly threatened his own future.
The Job by Janet Evanovich
FBI Agent Kate O' Hare is a force of nature, and she's lived for one thing and one thing only: to put the slippery conman known as Nicolas Fox behind bars. Nick is a fed's worst nightmare: exceptionally talented in his line of work, known the world over for being able to pull off some of the most dangerous, high-profile cons. In a cruel twist of fate, Kate's bosses at the FBI force her to covertly partner up with Nick to take down big league crime. Their adventures continue in this exciting third novel in the series.
A Curious Beginning by Deanna Raybourn
London, 1887. Veronica Speedwell intends to embark upon the journey of a lifetime. But fate has other plans. When Veronica thwarts her own abduction with the help of an enigmatic German baron, he offers her sanctuary in the care of his friend Stoker - a reclusive and bad-tempered natural historian. When the Baron is murdered, Veronica and Stoker are forced to go on the run from an elusive assailant, wary partners in search of the villainous truth.