Saturday, October 26, 2019

Wrapping up RIP 14 - Peril the 1st it is!

I spent a happy October reading mysteries as part of the annual Readers Imbibing Peril (RIP) reading challenge, and with six books read I easily accomplished the highest pinnacle, Peril the 1st (a four-book mark).

Here's what I read:
  • A Siege of Bitterns, by Steve Burrows - birder murder series #1 - absolutely wonderful, Canadian detective in England, a birder, of course, and a good mystery, and a pun or at least a double meaning, which gratifies my love of the nuances of language.
  • Brat Farrar, by Josephine Tey - at under 250 pages, I am counting this as my novella for the Back to the Classics challenge. About 3/4 of the way in, I had the feeling that I had read this book already, but I don't recall when or where or how...Enjoyed it immensely;
  • The Key to Rebecca, by Ken Follett - 3 solid stars - I think I like Follett's historical fiction more than his bread-and-butter spy thrillers, but this kept my interest almost until the end, and then it seemed a bit...silly?
  • In the Woods, by Tana French - riveting, Irish archaeology, Dublin, an exceptionally interesting double mystery, ambiguous ending, lots to like here, eager to read the second book in the Dublin Murder Squad series, and then watch the new TV series, airing in November, I think.
  • Picnic at Hanging Rock, by Joan Lindsay - excellent, review here.
  • Black Spirits and  White: A Book of Ghost Stories, by Ralph Adams Cram - reading this with the GoodReads True Book Talk group; written in late 19th century, fairly conventional ghost stories, but good, well-written and atmospheric.
I started Nathaniel Hawthorn'es Twice Told Tales, but found it unreadable - relentlessly grim and dull.

Reading mysteries in October is a tradition I have grown to love. 

Happy Halloween everyone!


  1. Yay for some RIP-ping reads! October is a great time of year for some mystery and suspense. :D

  2. You had an amazing RIP season! Brat Farrar has been on my wish list since I read about it in Will Schwalbe's The End of Your Life Book Club. I also thought In the Woods was very well done. It's been a couple of years since I read it, but plan to continue with the series. Didn't know there was going to be a television show. Recently purchased Picnic at Hanging Rock (specifically for RIP) but haven't gotten to it yet. I just finished my summer reading last week, so RIP was a total bust. On to Nonfiction November! ;-)

  3. Happy Halloween! What is the TV series based on the Tana French books? It sounds like something I'd like. For a spooky October read .... I just finished Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House ... which was pretty good / still collecting my thoughts on it.

    1. It's called Dublin Murders and it's on Starz in the US. I haven't seen it yet--need to renew Starz first :)

  4. I have not been reading in season this year. I have been watching some supernatural stuff however. I am currently in the middle of watching Marianne on Netflix which I think is an excellent horror

  5. This is a great idea reading mysteries in October and I am eager to check out In the Woods. Next year I would like to plan my reading in terms of the season and holidays. I regret now I didn't read any horror books in October but next year!

  6. Wow! Six books! I will be curious to hear what you think about Tana French’s other Dublin Murder Squad books. I like them a lot but she is sort of an acquired taste I think. I’ll probably miss the T.V. adaptation though I am sure it is good. So much out there is originally a book, right? I am constantly telling my coworker “Not seen it, but I read the book” (Game of Thrones, The Alchemist, The Handmaid’s Tale, etc.)

    Thrillers often do sort of fall apart upon closer inspection I think, re: The Eye of the Needle. I think they are meant to be read quickly and then on to the next.

  7. Hi Jane,
    Oh, gosh, it's been so long since I've posted a comment. Your list intrigues me no end! Siege of Bitterns--have never heard of this series but I must get a hold of it. Tana French--I love the brain behind all of her books. I had to return this one to the library before finishing it, which is why if I ever want to really, deeply read something, don't get it from the library when loads of people are waiting for it.
    I am also very interested in the Ken Follet novel, and I don't know it. But will look it up definitely. Thanks so much.