Book Review: Death of a Busybody by George Bellairs

Death of a Busybody (1942) is the third of a series of nearly sixty mystery books featuring Inspector (later Chief Inspector, etc.) Thomas Littlejohn, published between 1941 and 1980. Death of a Busybody brings us to one of twin villages, Hilary Magna (the other being Hilary Parva), where the skinny and scholarly vicar, Rev. Ethelred…

Book Review: The Dust Never Settles by Karina Lickorish Quinn

My thanks to Oneworld Publications and NetGalley for a review copy of this book. The Dust Never Settles is described by the author as her ‘love letter’ to her country Peru. Opening with mythology/origin stories which tie in to the book wonderfully later, we are introduced to Anaïs Echeverría who has a Peruvian mother and…

Book Review: A Stitch in Time by Penelope Lively #1976Club

The wonderful A Stitch in Time was my third and final pick for the #1976Club hosted by Karen at Kaggsy’s Bookish Ramblings and Simon at Stuck in a Book.  In A Stitch in Time, we meet eleven-year-old Maria Foster who is heading down to Lyme Regis with her parents for a month of summer holiday.…

Book Review: The Golden Gate by Alistair MacLean #1976Club

The Golden Gate by Alistair MacLean is my second pick for the #1976Club hosted by Karen at Kaggsy’s Bookish Ramblings and Simon at Stuck in a Book. The Golden Gate is a suspense–thriller, around a meticulously planned, daring kidnapping. The book opens with master-criminal Branson, who with his crew is beginning to give effect to…

Book Review: Princes Gate by Mark Ellis

My thanks to the author, Mark Ellis for a review copy of the book via Booktasters. Prince’s Gate is the first in a series of mysteries/police procedurals set in Second-World-War London, the DCI Frank Merlin series, and is set against a background of war time politics, diplomacy but also the shadier underbelly of the city.…

Book Review: Tintin and the Picaros by Hergé #1976Club

This is my first pick for the #1976Club hosted by Karen at Kaggsy’s Bookish Ramblings and Simon at Stuck in a Book. Politics and Conspiracy are at the heart of the twenty-third Tintin adventure (also the last one to be completed by Hergé), Tintin and the Picaros, which takes us to a fictional South American…

Centenary Post: Book Review: The Case of the Gilded Fly by Edmund Crispin

2 October 2021 marks the 100th birthday of Robert Bruce Montgomery, composer and writer, who wrote detective stories under the pseudonym Edmund Crispin, and musical scores including for the early films in the Carry On series. To celebrate, I read The Case of the Gilded Fly (1944), the first book to feature Crispin’s detective, Oxford…

Book Review: The Hungry Ghost by H.S. Norup

My thanks to Pushkin Press/Steerforth Press and NetGalley for a review copy of this book. ‘Loss and grief is part of life…we cannot forget the dead’ The Hungry Ghost is a children’s/middle-grade story set in Singapore, and is a story of adventure and ghosts, of family and relationships, of remembering and forgetting, of the past…

Book Review: The Book of Form and Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki

My thanks to Canongate and Netgalley for a review copy of this book. The Book of Form and Emptiness is certainly a strange book, a story about loss and coping, about depression and mental illness, about friends and support systems, and of course, about books, for it is a book that tells us the story,…