Thursday, 26 January 2023

More January 2023 Reading

I managed to do some more reading/audiobooking this month. Not as much as I liked, but I feel pleased over my reading so far in 2023. Will I be able to do more? Big "ha!" and "we shall see", but I did more reading (let's not mention how many books I bought/requested from publishers in the time in between...)

So, let me chat quickly about these two reads and I'll let you be on your way. Now, before I go further, I bought both of these but one of the titles (The Postscripts Murders by Elly Griffiths) was gifted to me by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review/reaction. 

Let's start with that one first: my first Elly Griffiths - The Postscript Murders (Buy from Bookshop [Affiliate]) And my first 12 Reads of 2023! Go Me!

A death of a 90 year old Peggy should be suspicious. But when DS Harbinder Kaur is visited by the woman's carer who says she is certain the old lady was murdered, Harbinder isn't sure. But when things start happening that make no sense (the business card saying Peggy was a "Murder Consultant" is found, a gunman holds the carer and her friend at gunpoint only to steal a book, the sudden murder of a well loved crime novelist who knew Peggy, mysterious men beginning to follow her and the carer), Harbinder knows something is very off... 

At long last! I have finally got round to reading/audiobooking my first Elly Griffiths. And I knew it had to be Postscript Murders as I didn't know very much about it and the cover intrigued me hugely (the original cover with the bold red background and the ivy on the front, not the cover you see now with the deck chair...).

This is a strange animal for me. Once I found my footing with the story, I whizzed through the audiobook, upping the reader speed because I had to know what happens next. I loved how the mystery starts: an elderly woman dies and her carer believes she was murdered and, when looking through her things, we discover a business card, calling her a "murder consultant". And I grew to love our main leads: DS Harbinder Kaur (the detective), Natalka (Peggy's Ukrainian carer), Benedict, (former monk, now the local coffee maker) and Edwin (Peggy's 80 year old neighbor). I think I stayed with the story because of these characters.

And yet... and yet, I didn't warm to this in the way I hoped and I'm not sure why. I really liked the characters, I really liked Elly Griffiths's writing, I did like the mystery (though I wish I knew more about Peggy), and I did like Nina Wadia narration of the audiobook. But there's something I couldn't connect with.

But I enjoyed myself with this and I do plan to read more Elly Griffiths this year. I have The Crossing Places, The Night Hawks and The Locked Room (this one I am hugely intrigued over as I see this EVERYWHERE!).

Now, the other book I read this month: The Mistletoe Bride by Kate Mosse (Buy from Bookshop [Affiliate]). This section will be quite short but this is a collection of ghost stories.

Now, these gentle ghost stories aren't scary, but there's an element of comfort to them so don't expect any gory or surprise twist. You are gentle led to the end and you know where the story's going to go. Because of this, I don't think many readers will enjoy this collection. Even I like a good twist every now and again with my short story reading.

I do think, though, there were too many short stories in this collection as, around the 50%/60% mark, I was getting a little bored and began to find it a slog to read this collection, but the first half of the book, I loved and flew through.

A cosy collection of ghost stories that readers will either through enjoy or find incredibly dull.

And you are up to date. I am going to start reading my book of leisure - An Autobiography by Agatha Christie and I am going to blitz a bunch of audiobooks for the next few weeks (so many from my library and from publishers, not to mention what I have bought). 

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