#BookReview: The Hand on the Wall by Maureen Johnson #Mystery #YoungAdult #TrulyDevious

In The Hand on the Wall, Maureen Johnson gives us a satisfying conclusion to the two mysteries surrounding Ellingham Academy which we have been following from book 1. This is of course, the third book of the Truly Devious series of Young Adult mysteries (I recently found out that there is to be a fourth book but that will be an entirely new mystery).

Ellingham Academy, the setting for the series, is a school in Vermont which was established by a tycoon in the 1930s for students who excelled or were gifted in particular areas, and which allowed them to pursue curricula that were designed to develop these interests. For our main character Stevie or Stephanie Bell, this is true crime. She is interested in solving crimes and more specifically the mystery surrounding the school itself for 80 years ago just after the school was set up, the founder Albert Ellingham’s wife and daughter were kidnapped and while his wife’s body was found, his daughter Alice was never recovered. Another student Dottie Epstein, a rather clever young girl had also disappeared at the time. And just before the disappearances, Ellingham was receiving mysterious, threatening messages from someone who called themselves ‘Truly Devious’. Now as Stevie is beginning to reinvestigate the case, deaths begin to take place in the present as well, first one student and then a second, and both had been working on a documentary connected with the old case. And where we left off last, a third person interested in the Ellingham matter died in mysterious circumstances. But was it just an accident as it seemed to be?

In this instalment, Stevie has solved the 1930s mystery (or so she thinks), discovered who Truly Devious was, but Alice is yet to be found. Also, in the present-day mystery, the threads are yet to be connected—were all the deaths simply things gone wrong or accidents? Not only that, her boyfriend or at least the boy she was interested in, David has gone missing and is miffed with her for acting at the behest of his father. Stevie is feeling lost amidst all of this and needs to get her thoughts together but a huge storm is about to break out and the school is suddenly evacuated. Another turn of circumstances, and Stevie and a small group of friends end up being the only ones staying behind at Ellingham and in this freezing place, Stevie must put the final pieces of the puzzles (both) together.   

Compared to book 2, I found I got into this one far more easily (though the gap between my reading this and the last was about the same as between book 2 and book 1), and found myself absorbed back in right from the start. Like the first two books, this one also follows a dual timeline and so we the reader see events as they unfolded back in the 1930s (as also the present), while Stevie must work them out for herself, and so while she does solve the puzzle, we the reader have a fuller and clearer explanation (of the older mystery, I mean). This was something I oddly enjoyed. In fact, the 1930s mystery with all its twists and complications was the one I ended up enjoying much more than the present-day one. The solution to the latter too was satisfying, no doubt, but perhaps not something that entirely took me by surprise (I mean, not that I guessed but it wasn’t the kind that sometimes entirely blows one away, if that makes sense). The romance thread was also not my favourite but her friends were kind of fun. And I also did enjoy the Agatha Christie references (in this one it is essentially to And Then There Were None which is supposed to be Stevie’s favourite) once again.

Overall I really enjoyed the series, though and would like to read the new mystery when it comes out. What I’d have done differently with this series would have probably been to not read it as it came out but wait till they were all available because I felt with the gaps between books, I did lose track of characters and developments in the story.

Have you read this series? What did you think of it? Any other young adult mysteries that you’ve read and enjoyed? Looking forward to your thoughts and recommendations!

Images: the first mine, and the second via Goodreads.

The Name is Strange #FictionalCharacters

Photo by Gabby K on Pexels.com

October is the month for things strange, eerie and spooky, and in our reads too, we tend to pick up the mysterious or something with monsters, ghouls, and vampires aplenty (or even a few). Last year I had compiled a short list of some of my favourite spooky/scary reads which also ended up including some that I planned to pick up (here). This year, looking through my shelves for strange or spooky reads, I instead noticed something else altogether, which was books that I had with characters actually named Strange. Two of these (a duology and a standalone) are fantasy reads, but one is certainly not but, still it is a mystery so fits with the season. So here goes.

The first of these is a fantasy duology by Laini Taylor, called I think Strange the Dreamer and consists of Strange the Dreamer and Muse of Nightmares. The story is about a foundling, Lazlo Strange who is sent to live at an abbey where an old monk tells him stories about a mysterious (and far away) land that fascinate him. But one day, as if by magic, the name of this city vanishes from his mind and of everyone else; all that remains is the word ‘Weep’. Lazlo grows up to become librarian at the Great Library of Zosma and remains absorbed in learning all he can about Weep. Then one day, Tizekane, warriors from Weep, led by the Godslayer come to Zosma to take back skilled men and women, to help their city recover from a tragedy that has affected them. In Weep we also meet a young girl, half human and half god Sarai, who with her ‘family’ has also been impacted by this tragedy. Both the books are beautiful and magical, the story drawing you in and plenty of surprises along the way.

Next is another fantasy read, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke. Set in an alternative, magical England, this is the story of two rival magicians Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell. The latter is rich and reclusive, and lives in Yorkshire with a library of rare and wonderful books, and ends up even raising the dead. Then comes on the scene the charming and talkative Jonathan Strange who Mr Norrell takes on as a pupil. But their ideas of what magic in England should be turn out very different, while in the background is the Raven King, a mysterious figure belonging to both the world of the humans and the Faerie. This one has footnotes as well which I found good fun, though it is a doorstopper.

Next on my list is a good old mystery, Towards Zero. This one is part of Christie’s set of books featuring Superintendent Battle, in fact the last of the series (if one can call it that). The Strange in this book is Neville Strange, a former tennis ace who brings both his present wife Kay, and former wife Audrey, when invited for a visit by his former guardian’s wife Lady Tressilian, chatelaine at Gull’s Point. Being an Agatha Christie, there is naturally a death (more than one, in fact) and Battle must investigate. This is another where Christie explores human nature, and also the idea that all that happens does so for a reason.

These are the four from my shelves one’s I’ve read with characters named Strange. But there are quite a few others, all ‘strangely’ from comics.

Among these are Doctor Strange, who first appeared in Marvel Comics in 1963, who starts off as a surgeon who loses his ability to operate after an accident, but after encountering the Ancient One, recovers and becomes his student. He goes on to serve as sorcerer supreme, protecting the earth against magical and mystical threats (source: wikipedia here). Adam Strange on the other hand appears in DC Comics and first appeared before Doctor Strange, in 1958. He is an archaeologist who travels to other planets (wikipedia here). His story sounds to me a bit like The Princess of Mars/John Carter.

Next we have Hugo Strange, archvillain who is an adversary of Batman and one of the first recurring villains in the DC comics series. He first appeared in 1940 in a story in which he, a scientist, stole a concentrated lightning machine which helped his gang commit crimes (Wikipedia here). Finally we have Doc Strange from the Thrilling Comics in 1940. This Strange is also a scientist who develops a serum that gives him some extraordinary powers including the ability to fly and superhuman strength. In 2000, this Doc Strange was renamed Tom Strange (Wikipedia here).

So that’s the rather interesting list of Stranges that I’ve come across in fiction. Other than Neville Strange the tennis player and possibly Hugo Strange (though he does create some monsters in some stories), the others all have some extraordinary powers or magic. So even if not spooky, with the fantastical elements, these would all be pretty apt reads for the season.

Have you read any of these? Which ones and how did you like them? Any other characters named Strange that you’ve come across? Looking forward to your thoughts and recommendations!

My October reads don’t include any of these books, by the way, but I do have some mysteries (including The Mysterious Affairs at Styles that turns 100 this month) and spooky-ish reads that I’ve been picking up. Reviews will appear when I get to them. I’ve only just about caught up with my September reads.

What spooky books have you been reading?

Shelf Control #108: Mistress of Mellyn by Victoria Holt

Wednesday, the 30th of September, and time for Shelf Control once again! Shelf Control is a weekly feature hosted by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies, and celebrates the books waiting to be read on your TBR piles/mountains. To participate, all you do is pick a book from your TBR pile, and write a post about it–what its about, why you want to read it, and such. If you participate, link back to Lisa’s page, and do also leave your links in the comments below as I’d love to check out your picks as well!

Today’s pick is a book by an author I’ve read before but in another avatar. Mistress of Mellyn, first published in 1960 is in fact the first gothic romance novel written by author Victoria Holt, who went on to publish over 30 books in this category. Victoria Holt happens to be one of many pen names used by Engish author Eleanor Alice Hibbert who also wrote historical fiction as Jean Plaidy (it is these books or rather some of these books that I have read before, and enjoyed) and family sagas as Philippa Carr, among others, writing nearly 200 novels in all. Mistress of Mellyn was an instant bestseller when first published and is also credited with having revived the genre of gothic romantic suspense.

Reading the description/synopsis of the story I was reminded a lot of Rebecca though I realised from Goodreads friends’ reviews (such as here and here) and the Wikipedia description (here) that this certainly has shades of Jane Eyre as well. (Also, like the two, it is narrated in first person by our ‘heroine’.) In the story, Martha Leigh, who does not wish to be a governess nevertheless has to become one for she is alone and penniless. She arrives at the family mansion of the TreMellyns–where else but above the cliffs of Cornwall! Her employer, Connan TreMellyn is a cold imposing man, while his daughter Alvean is wilful, spoilt but lonely. Soon enough she finds there is a mystery surrounding the death of the former mistress of Mellyn, and voices in the waves at night whispering, ‘Alice, Alice where are you…

This certainly sounds like a great deal of fun, and with an appropriate bit of mystery and creepiness for the autumn/Halloween season. Both setting and plot sound like something that I will enjoy, though I’m hoping there’s more mystery and scary elements than romance.

Have you read this one or any others by Victoria Holt? Which one/s and how did you like them? Looking forward to your thoughts and recommendations.

The cover image is from Goodreads; book description from Goodreads (here) and the blurb behind my copy, and wikipedia (linked above), author info from Wikipedia (here)

Lisa’s pick this week is an interesting story around Queen Elizabeth’s wedding gown (here)

Find reviews of Mistress of Mellyn by wordpress bloggers Cynthia Sally Haggard (here) and Fleeting Butterflies (here)

Shelf Control #106: Death at the Cafe by Alison Golden and Jamie Vougeot

Wednesday, the 2nd of September, and time for Shelf Control once again! Shelf Control is a weekly feature hosted by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies, and celebrates the books waiting to be read on your TBR piles/mountains. To participate, all you do is pick a book from your TBR pile, and write a post about it–what its about, why you want to read it, and such. If you participate, link back to Lisa’s page, and do also leave your links in the comments below as I’d love to check out your picks as well!

Today my pick is once again a cosy mystery, Death at the Cafe by Alison Golden and Jamie Vougeot. This is a prequel to the Revd. Annabelle Dixon series, and was published in 2015. I got it on kindle, I think most probably when I picked up another book by this Alison Golden which I enjoyed (also a cosy but different series).

Annabelle Dixon is a brand new female vicar, assigned to St Clement’s church in an inner city borough, and begins to serve with enthusiasm and drive, gaining both fans and admiration, despite not being the typical vicar. She heads to meet her old friend, Sister Mary, a nun back from Africa, but finds Sister Mary at the appointed cafe, shaking, and with a dead body at her feet. With a note, disappearing darts, and vague hints, Annabelle must piece together this puzzle which takes her all over London. Annabelle also apparently enjoys cake, and the book includes recipes for four sweet treats as well!

This sounds like a fun mystery, and one different from the usual cosy, so I would love to pick it up at some point. This is also the second book/series that I have come across which includes recipes alongside the mystery–the other was by Joanne Pence, part of her Angie Amalfi series. Should be fun to explore!

Have you read this one or any others by this author? Which ones and how did you like them? Have you read mysteries which also have recipes included? Which ones? What do you think of books that do this? Looking forward to your thoughts!

Cover image and book description from Goodreads (here)

The Maker of the Philosopher’s Stone: Nicolas Flamel in Fiction #HarryPotter

Considered by many the greatest wizard of modern times, Professor Dumbledore is particularly famous for his defeat of the Dark wizard Grindelwald in 1945, for his discovery of the twelve uses of dragon’s blood and his work on alchemy with his partner Nicolas Flamel.

J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone

This sentence from the Dumbledore ‘Famous Witches and Wizards’ card, which Harry gets aboard the Hogwarts Express where he sees his first chocolate frog is where we learn a little more about Dumbledore, beyond the letter Harry has received from Hogwarts offering him his place, and of course, when we ‘met’ him at the start when he comes with Prof McGonagall and Hagrid to drop off Harry at the Dursleys’. But in these few words are also more than one story–it is the first mention of Grindelwald, who of course has his own full-length story now. But it is also where where first hear of Nicholas Flamel who holds the clue to the ‘mystery’ Harry, Ron and Hermione must solve in the first book. (An aside–the picture of the card in the illustrated ed. has Dumbledore eating sherbet lemons, with some knitting beside him–the first we have already know he loves right from the start, the second we also do later in the series (I didn’t remember the knitting bit, but The Wizarding World pointed me to it (here)).

But anyway, coming back to Flamel, we go on to find out in the book that Flamel is the only person to be in possession of the famed philosopher’s stone (in Hindi, paras mani), that creation of alchemy that not only turns metals into gold but can also produce the elixir of life, which is probably why Flamel in the story is 665 while his wife Perenelle, 658. The philosopher’s stone being guarded in Hogwarts by among other things (mostly spells and magic), Fluffy, the three-headed dog, is of course what Voldermort is after, for he wants to regain his strength and powers.

When I first read of Flamel in Harry Potter many years ago, I had simply thought he was a character in the books, like most others but only later when I came across him once again (in fiction), did I look him up, and found that he was very much real.

Flamel (1330-1418) (not 665 alas!) was a French scribe and manuscript seller, who became known after his death as an alchemist who discovered the philosopher’s stone and made him and his wife immortal (so perhaps 665, after all?). This reputation was apparently the result of a manuscript published a couple of centuries after his death, in 1612, claiming also that he got all his knowledge from a mysterious book he had purchased and went on to decipher with his wife (more details on Wikipedia here).

The book I came across him in next, and after which I looked him up, was The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo. In this famous French classic, Claude Frollo, a knowledgeable man who rescues and raises Quasimodo but also turns out to be the villain of the piece after he falls in love with Esmerelda, is also trying to decipher Flamel’s secrets. There is mention of a house that Flamel built, and the supposition that he has hidden the philosopher’s stone in the cellar, and even of gold which was the result of his experiments. But Flamel here was not so much at the centre of things or as important as he was in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. This first Potter book is also not his only appearance in the series either. Not counting the original books alone, he has also appeared in the spinoff–Fantastic Beasts, in the Grindelwald story (the connection once again springing from that sentence on the card. This makes me want to keep an eye out for what role the dragon blood part of the sentence ends up playing in the future–I haven’t consciously noticed this yet).

But these aren’t the only books we meet Flamel in. The third time I came across Flamel in fiction was one where I picked up the book knowing Flamel was in it, and at the centre (unlike the first two) and this was the first of the series by Michael Scott, The Secrets of the Immortal Nicolas Flamel, and the book was The Alchemyst. In this one twins Josh and Sophie Newman take up what they think are innocuous summer jobs at a bookstore, and coffee shop, only to be thrown into a world of magic and adventure, and of course great danger. In this Flamel and his wife appear in their real-life roles as booksellers, but alive and well many years after, indicating that they do have the stone. While this was an imaginative (weaving in both history and mythology) and mostly enjoyable book, I somehow felt that Flamel should have had more of a role which he didn’t. I haven’t read the other five books yet so can’t say if this changes in the later books.

Besides these, there is a manga series, Fullmetal Alchemist, the story of two brothers in search of the philosopher’s stone, set in a steampunk world. Here, however, Flamel is only mentioned in the course of their efforts, and doesn’t as far as I know appear or have a role.

Whether or not Flamel really created or even attempted to create the philosopher’s stone, the legends that have become associated with him make him as fascinating as the magical and powerful stone itself. And thinking of it from that viewpoint, one would have expected him to be in more stories (I haven’t gone into film in this list) but these were all I came across.

Have you read the books on my list? Any others which mentioned or used Flamel and the legends surrounding him that you’ve come across? Looking forward to your thoughts and recommendations!

All cover images from Goodreads as always; Flamel from Wikipedia (here)

Shelf Control #99: Strictly Murder by Lynda Wilcox #Mystery #Cosy

Wednesday, the 15th of July, and time for Shelf Control once again! Shelf Control is a weekly feature hosted by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies, and celebrates the books waiting to be read on your TBR piles/mountains. To participate, all you do is pick a book from your TBR pile, and write a post about it–what its about, why you want to read it, and such. If you participate, link back to Lisa’s page, and do also leave your links in the comments below as I’d love to check out your picks as well!

Today, my pick is a first in series, a cosy mystery–Strictly Murder by Lynda Wilcox. I had picked this one up quite a while ago when it was free on Kindle since I generally enjoy reading cosies. The series has nine books so far including seven full-length ones and a couple of shorter works. This first book was published in 2012.

In this one Verity Long, a personal assistant around whom the series is centred and who works for a crime writer, is house-hunting. But as the description says, the house has two reception rooms, kitchen and bath, but the master bedroom holds a nasty shock, for Verity finds a dead celebrity. And so her house-hunt turns into a murder mystery as Verity ends up in the world of ‘dance shows, TV studios, and dangerously gorgeous male costars’. But she might just be the ‘killer’s next tango partner’.

This sounds like a light-hearted and fun read. Goodreads reviews of this one are rather mixed with some enjoying it a quite a bit, and others, er… not so much . I had picked this one most likely at a point when I had picked up a bunch of free cosies on Kindle, many of which I enjoyed very much especially ones featuring Chef Maurice. Cosies can be entertaining, and even if the mysteries aren’t terribly complex, they can still be a lot of fun. Hope this one turns out to be fun too!

Have you read this one? Or any others by the author? Any other cosies that you’ve read by new-to-you authors that you enjoyed? Looking forward to your thoughts and recommendations!

Book description from Goodreads (here) as is the cover image.

Find Lisa’s pick here and Cheryl’s here

Just a bit of fun: My ten least viewed posts!

When I have nothing to do (and sometimes also when I have plenty to do, and am not doing any of it :P, such as now), I look a lot at the stats on my blog; how many views I’ve got, which posts readers and fellow-bloggers seem to like most, the countries from which people are reading my posts, etc. So, today I thought, just for a bit of fun, I will share the ones on my blog people haven’t viewed/read so much: Not for any serious reasons but just for fun. Every week, I do try to put up two posts besides the weekly Bookquote that I share every Monday (today’s from Rosemary Sutcliff, who I’ve been featuring all month is here), and Shelf Control which appears every Wednesday, and which features a book from my TBR pile which is waiting to be read (feature from Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies). In this list, I’m not including any of these, nor wrap ups which I used to do earlier but have stopped lately.

So far on my blog, including the initial years that I opened it up but barely put up two posts a year, I have 437 posts including quotes and shelf control.

And my list:

  • My review of Gerinomo Stilton: Lost Treasure of the Emerald Eye: April 2018 (here): I’d been seeing these books so often but had never read them; then came across a couple on NetGalley and picked them up for review!
  • Review of Edward Eager’s Half Magic: June 2017 (here): This I think was me experimenting with Goodreads’ share to you blog feature, so it doesn’t even have a proper title.
  • Anna Sewell: Champion of Horses: 30 March 2020 (here): A short post about Sewell on the occasion of her 100th birthday,earlier this year.
  • Findouters’ Challenge: Fatty the Ventriloquist: 30 December 2017 (here): Review of The Mystery of the Strange Bundle: part of my ‘challenge’ revisiting all the Five Findouters books in order.
  • Crito, Emma and Some Perspectives on the Social Contract: 27 April 2018 (here): This one I like very much; from an intro I by Peter Conrad read fitting Emma by Jane Austen into Rousseau’s social contract framework; Crito, Plato’s dialogue on the same theme and how the same is part of our daily lives.
  • Bookreview: Zarathustra: 10 December 2019 (here): Book review of a graphic novel telling the first part of the story of Zarathustra or Zoroaster.
  • My review of Turtles All the Way Down by John Green: 13 August 2018 (here)
  • My review of Illusion by Stephanie Elmas: 29 July 2018 (here): an interesting tale of magic set in Victorian England combining both harsh real life and magic.
  • My list of History of Science favourites: 30 January 2020 (here): Another of my favourites since I love this genre a lot.
  • Review of The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert: 8 March 2018 (here): This was I think my first ‘approval’ from NetGalley.

So, this is it, my ten least viewed posts!!! A couple on that list, I would have liked to get more views on but the rest, I don’t really know! Anyway, this exercise was meant for fun and nothing more!

Do you enjoy looking at your blog stats? Just basic view information and comments or the other stuff too, like the country stats? Looking forward to your thoughts!

Image source: Pexels

Not Just Anne of Green Gables: Some L.M. Montgomery Favourites

L.M. Montgomery or Lucy Maud Montgomery (1874-1952) was a Canadian author, best known for Anne of Green Gables, her 1908 book about a little red-headed orphan girl who arrives by mistake at the home of Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert, siblings running a farm who had wanted to adopt a boy. But before long, she wins their hearts and stays, and both their and her lives change. But besides Anne of Green Gables and the seven others in that series that appeared after it (some of these are on my list), L.M. Montgomery wrote many more books. As Wikipedia (here) tells us, she wrote a total of 20 full-length novels, 530 short stories, 500 poems, and 30 essays–quite a prolific lady. I knew and read the first few Anne books in school but it was only some years ago that a book friend pointed me to her other books, which I ended up reading all of (the novels I mean, not all her others works, yet), and have quite a few favourites among them which I’m sharing in this list.

Most of her books are set in Prince Edward Island, and the Island’s beauty, nature–flowers, fruit trees–and general atmosphere has a magical role in many of the stories. She also explores the themes of young girls making their way in the world, Anne as a teacher (at least initially) and writer, and Emily Byrd Starr as a writer. Here are some of her books, other than Anne of Green Gables, that I really enjoyed (I liked them all by the way–all her books are very readable and enjoyable, only A Tangled Web, which is otherwise a lovely story, was spoiled for me by one little incident she put in there).

Jane of Lantern Hill: This is the story of a young girl Jane Stuart loving with her rather strict (and not very likeable) grandmother who doesn’t not like her, and mother in a dreary home in Toronto. But one summer she learns that she is to visit her father (her parents are separated) who lives on Prince Edward Island. She is naturally reluctant but once she gets there, PEI works its magic, and life as she knows it changes much more than she could have ever imagined.

The Emily Books: Emily of New Moon, Emily Climbs, and Emily’s Quest form a trilogy of stories about Emily Byrd Starr, an orphan like Anne, but who is sent to live with relatives. We follow her life from that point as she grows up and tries to make a name for herself as a writer, especially living in a home where her writing is not only not encouraged but disapproved of by her aunt. These stories have a lot of Montgomery’s own experiences worked in, which I realised after reading The Alpine Path, where she writes of her career.

The Story Girl and the Golden Road: These are two connected novels tell of Sara Stanley (the ‘story girl’) who is sent to live on Prince Edward Island at a time when some cousins also come to live there while her father is away for work. Here she entertains them by telling them different stories she has heard and collected. Alongside, we also follow their lives on PEI, with its simple pleasures and also learn of what becomes of them when they grow up.

The Blue Castle: This is the story of Valency Stirling, a twenty-nine-year old unmarried woman living with her rather hard mother, her social life confined to her not particularly pleasant relatives, her only consolation being her favourite books and dreams of a Blue Castle where life will be perfect. For rest she must always listen to her fanily’s taunts and remarks and lead a rather dreary existence. But when she hears some shocking news from her doctor, her life changes, and she begins to try and finally ‘live’ finding not only escape and happiness, but also adventure and love. The end of this one was perhaps a tad over the top, and a bit melodramatic, but I love the book for the way she changes and handles her relatives.

Anne of Avonlea and Anne of the Island: Not strictly Anne of Green Gables, but yes, Anne books, but I couldn’t do without mentioning these in my list. Of the eight Anne books, the first three are my favourites (the last two hardly have Anne in them). In these two which immediately follow the first book, Anne is growing up and begins her career as a teacher, and later heads off to Redmond College. These may not be as funny as the first one, but they are still a great deal of fun with Anne own antics, as well as those of Davy and Dora, twins whom Marilla ends up adopting, and Anne receiving some expected and unexpected marriage proposals.

Montgomery’s other books are worth reading too, and I will do a post on some of the short stories later when I read more of them. But of her novels, these are certainly among my favourites. You can find most of her works in public domain at Project Gutenberg (here) and fadedpage (here)

Have you read any of the ones on my list? Or any not on my list? How did you like them and which are your favourites? Looking forward to your thoughts and recommendations!

Cover images are as always from Goodreads.