Read in July & A Glimpse of The Cosy Knave

It doesn’t look as though I’ve read many books in July going by the number of books I’ve finished:

  1. Whistling for the Elephants by Sandi Toksvig
  2. The Tinder Box by Minette Walters (library book)
  3. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie (library book)
  4. Wilful Behaviour by Donna Leon (library book)
  5. Gently by the Shore by Alan Hunter (library book)

but I’ve also been reading Blonde by Joyce Carol Oates which is as long as about two/three  books in itself. it will be a while before I finish it.

The links on the titles go to my posts on the books. I wrote about the opening of Whistling for the Elephants by Sandi Toksvig in a Book Beginnings post. I was rather disappointed by it – I didn’t think it was funny or even very humorous. It’s about Dorothy, an English girl of 10 who has gone to live with her parents in Sassapaneck, New York in 1968. She finds it difficult to fit in – not only because she has to learn about America and the basics of school life, so different from what she knew, but also she has to work out what opinions she should have and whether she is a boy of a girl.

Whistling for the Elephants is packed with eccentric people, but it was hard to distinguish between some of the characters and it was only at the end that I had  discovered who they all were, so the characterisation isn’t too good. And I never really cared much about any of them either. The story kept getting submerged in facts about a variety of different topics, as though this is a collection of short essays or stories roughly linked together to make a book.

I think my book of the month, by a whisker, is Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express, which I thoroughly enjoyed even though I knew the plot and who did the murder.

I’ve have a few other books on the go at the moment including Dorte Jakobsen’s new e-book The Cosy Knave. Dorte blogs at djkrimiblog and her book is released today. I’ll write about it when I’ve finished it – all I can say so far is that I’m enjoying the story very much and am completely  baffled about who the murderer can be! For more details see Dorte’s blog – here.

4 thoughts on “Read in July & A Glimpse of The Cosy Knave

  1. I read Chain of Curiosity by Sandi Toksvig last year. It’s non-fiction and consists of columns she wrote for one of the papers. It was excellent and very funny. Oddly enough I wasn’t inclined to pick up any of her fiction books after that – partly because none of the subjects appealed but also I couldn’t imagine they would be as funny as the non-fiction. I heartily recommend Chain of Curiosity!


  2. Margaret – I’m so glad you liked Murder on the Orient Express. That has one of crime fiction’s more interesting plot solutions, doesn’t it? And did you know it is mentioned again in Cards on the Table? In fact, there’s a spoiler to it in that novel, so I always suggest reading that one after reading Murder on the Orient Express. It’s also mentioned in Death in the Clouds (AKA Death in the Air and again, there’s a spoiler.
    And thanks for mentioning Dorte’s book. The Cosy Knave is terrific, and I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I did!


  3. Ah, I love baffled readers! Thank you Margaret for the mention and the links.

    I have not read much in July either, and I have not even written quite as much as I´d hoped for, but I am beginning to learn that a launch *always* swallows more hours than you had bargained for. Well, it is also exciting really so I shouldn´t complain 😉


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