Thursday, September 3, 2015

September 2015 Reading List

It's time for another month of mysteries.  And a wide variety of them at that!  Here's what I'm hoping to read in September:
  • Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith.  Goodreads describes it as such, "Stalin's Soviet Union is an official paradise, where citizens live free from crime and fear only one thing: the all-powerful state. Defending this system is idealistic security officer Leo Demidov, a war hero who believes in the iron fist of the law, but when a murderer starts to kill at will and Leo dares to investigate, the State's obedient servant finds himself demoted and exiled. Now, with only his wife at his side, Leo must fight to uncover shocking truths about a killer--and a country where "crime" doesn't exist." I don't read a lot that takes place in Russia, not on purpose, it just doesn't come into my path very often.  But, this book sounded very interesting.  And I love that it's Leo and his wife against everyone else.  There's also a movie on Netflix, starring Tom Hardy as Leo, Noomi Rapace as his wife (who played Lisabeth Salander in the original "Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" movies), and Joel Kinnaman (previously of "The Killing").  It just released this year, but I'm guessing it must be kind of a mess because it has some big names in it, but I don't recall ever seeing a preview for it.
  • The Last Dickens by Matthew Pearl.  Pearl writes historical literary mysteries.  I've read The Poe Shadow and The Dante Club and enjoyed both of them, so I'm interested in what he'll do with Dickens world.  Goodreads describes it as, "Boston, 1870. When news of Charles Dickens’s untimely death reaches the office of his struggling American publisher, Fields & Osgood, partner James Osgood sends his trusted clerk Daniel Sand to await the arrival of Dickens’s unfinished novel. But when Daniel’s body is discovered by the docks and the manuscript is nowhere to be found, Osgood must embark on a transatlantic quest to unearth the novel that he hopes will save his venerable business and reveal Daniel’s killer." Pearl has a way of  bringing cities and people to life and this one looks pretty promising.
  • Life Sentences by Laura Lippman.  I read What the Dead Know a few years back and while it was really interesting and kept me up too late, I remember feeling a little let down by the end.  But, it was more a personal thing, not a problem with the author. So, when I found two of her books on clearance at Goodwill a few months back, I snapped them up.  Goodreads description of this one is, 
    Author Cassandra Fallows has achieved remarkable success by baring her life on the page. Her two widely popular memoirs continue to sell briskly, acclaimed for their brutal, unexpurgated candor about friends, family, lovers—and herself. But now, after a singularly unsuccessful stab at fiction, Cassandra believes she may have found the story that will enable her triumphant return to nonfiction.

    When Cassandra was a girl, growing up in a racially diverse middle-class neighborhood in Baltimore, her best friends were all black: elegant, privileged Donna; sharp, shrewd Tisha; wild and worldly Fatima. A fifth girl orbited their world—a shy, quiet, unobtrusive child named Calliope Jenkins—who, years later, would be accused of killing her infant son. Yet the boy's body was never found and Calliope's unrelenting silence on the subject forced a judge to jail her for contempt. For seven years, Calliope refused to speak and the court was finally forced to let her go. Cassandra believes this still unsolved real-life mystery, largely unknown outside Baltimore, could be her next bestseller.
  •  Mr Penumbra's 24-Hour Book Store by Robin Sloan.  This one has been on my reading list for quite a while, so I was pretty excited when I found it in a used bookshop while on a road trip a few months back.  One of my friends read it, and she said it was interesting, but really wouldn't tell me much about it.  Goodreads blurb says, "The Great Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon away from life as a San Francisco web-design drone and into the aisles of Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore. But after a few days on the job, Clay discovers that the store is more curious than either its name or its gnomic owner might suggest. The bookstore’s secrets extend far beyond its walls."

    So after a month of mostly nonfiction, I'm looking forward to curling up with some mysteries to kick off autumn.  What are you reading this month?

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