Discussion Forums - Mystery & Thrillers

Topic: 2014 Mystery Challenge Topics & Discussion

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
Page:   Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Geri (geejay) -
Subject: 2014 Mystery Challenge Topics & Discussion
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 2:12 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

This is the place for discussion, questions and just general chit chat.  There is a LIST ONLY thread

24 books total in main challenge and two bonus categories.  Third bonus category is an option

  1. HAVING A SENIOR MOMENT HERE… Read a mystery with a senior citizen as sleuth (amateur or retired professional)
     
  2. EDGAR, WHERE ARE YOU?... Read a mystery by an Edgar Award Grand Master or a Diamond Dagger Award winner – anyone within the last five years.   Stop You’re Killing Me has a list. 
     
  3. ELEMENTARY MY DEAR WATSON… Read a Holmes mystery written by someone other than Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
     
  4. LET’S HAVE A HISTORY LESSON… Read an historical mystery.  You pick the era.  From ancient before 476 to the 1980s.  (Things that are 25 years old are antiques therefore history to me)
     
  5. ON THE ROAD AGAIN… Read a mystery involving a MC who hits the road.  Any type of travel, car, bus, plane, train.
     
  6. THE SPY WHO LOVED… Ready a mystery/thriller with an agency theme (CIA/FBI/Secret Service or other
     
  7. THE OTHER SIDE OF LIFE… Read a mystery where the MC or there is a gay or lesbian character.
     
  8. JUST THE FACTS…Read a mystery that involves a “cold case”. 
     
  9. AH! INSPECTOR, JUST IN TIME FOR TEA… Read a Brit police mystery
     
  10. I’M STILL ALIVE… Read a mystery that has a disabled or survivor MC
     
  11. HERE’S LOOKING AT YOU KID… Read a mystery with a male lead PI.
     
  12. OVER AND OVER AGAIN… Read a mystery involving a serial killer.
     

Bonus 1: Around the World:   Read six books set in a different location – Not the U.S.!  Try to read a book from a [;ace you’d like to visit for a bit more of a challenge. 

Africa              Canada                        Greenland/Iceland     New Zealand
Asia                 Caribbean Islands      Mexico                        South America
Australia         Europe (England)       Middle East                South Pacific Islands



BONUS 2: Follow Route 66 (The Mother Road), it began in Chicago, Illinois and was the way to go to Santa Monica, California.  It went through eight states but we’ll go with six books. 

http://www.historic66.com/

If you ever plan to motor west
Travel my way, the highway that's the best.
Get your kicks on Route 66!

  1.  Illinois
  2. Missouri
  3. Kansas
  4. Oklahoma
  5. Texas
  6. New Mexico
  7. Arizona
  8. California


Bonus 3:  Free Choice.  Choose one or all or none, your choice.

  1. SECOND HAND ROSE… Read the next in a series you’ve been reading. 
     
  2. THIS IS GOOD TOO!... Try another series written by a favorite author that you haven’t read.
     
  3. THESE ARE GETTING MOLDY… Read six mysteries that have been sitting on your TBR or Reminder List for at least a year.
     
  4. HOME AND TRAVEL… Read a mystery that takes place in your home state and five states you’d like to visit.
     
  5. GIDDIUP COWBOY… Read a mystery with a western setting.
     
  6. MYSTERIES GO TO THE MOVIES… Read a mystery that’s been made into a movie, either big screen or TV.  
     
  7. ARTS, CRAFTS, FOOD AND DRINK WITH MY DOG… Read some cozies that involve an art, craft any type of food or beverage.  Want to read one with an animal?  Your choice.
     
  8. HE’S GONE JIM… Read a mystery by an author we’ve lost in the last year.


Last Edited on: 1/14/14 3:21 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 2:25 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

I thought I’d share some information for the challenge.

For those who might not have tried a challenge before.  You can find a great deal of information on SYKM (Stop You’re Killing Me!)   http://www.stopyourekillingme.com and Fantastic Fiction  http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk.

These categories were suggested and a couple I came up with.  Thanks to all for the suggestions and I hope you like the categories.  I have all the suggestions listed and I’m keeping them for next year! 

Stop You’re Killing Me has an index on the left side of the page that includes Award, Location, Job, Historical, Diversity and Genre among other things.. 

This can be called the year of Diversity/

  1.  HAVING A SENIOR MOMENT HERE… Read a mystery with a senior citizen as sleuth (amateur or retired professional).  

    Under Diversity you’ll find Seniors.  Jessica Fletcher is a senior as is Melita Pargeter just to give you some idea.

     
  2. EDGAR, WHERE ARE YOU?... Read a mystery by an Edgar Award Grand Master or a Diamond Dagger Award winner – anyone within the last five years.   Stop You’re Killing Me has a list. 

    Under Book Awards you’ll see Edgar Awards.  Under that category you’ll see Grand Master Winners.  When you click it you see the authors that have won.  Not a specific book title.  The Diamond Dagger Award is like the Edgars if you prefer those authors. 

     
  3. ELEMENTARY MY DEAR WATSON… Read a Holmes mystery written by someone other than Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

    Just look under Characters for Holmes and SYKM has a subgenre Sherlock Holmes by other authors under the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle list.  More than 20 authors!
     
  4. LET’S HAVE A HISTORY LESSON… Read an historical mystery.  You pick the era.  From ancient before 476 to the 1980s.  (Things that are 25 years old are antiques therefore history to me!)

    Just pick a time frame that interests you or try something new.  SYKM has an Historical Index - have a good time picking!

    5.  ON THE ROAD AGAIN… Ready a mystery involving a MC who hits the road.  Any type of travel, car, bus, plane, train.

    I did a keyword search with Travel and the genre Mystery on PBS.  Came up with over 1300 books.  Some authors are Emily Toll, Maria Hudgins and Kathleen Tosh to name a few.

     
  1.  THE SPY WHO LOVED… Ready a mystery/thriller with an agency theme (CIA/FBI/Secret Service or other) 

    SYKM has a category CIA, FBI, Secret Service, etc so you should be able to find something there.  Jeff Abbott has a CIA agent series that’s pretty good.

     
  2.  THE OTHER SIDE OF LIFE… Read a mystery where the MC is gay or lesbian.

     SYKM has gay/lesbian under diversity.

     
  3. JUST THE FACTS… Read a mystery that involves a “cold case”. 

    Use keyword on PBS "cold case" (with quote marks) to find hundreds of choices, not just books with those words in the title
     
  1. AH! INSPECTOR, JUST IN TIME FOR TEA… Read a Brit police mystery.

    This should be the easiest category for many people.

     
  2.  I’M STILL ALIVE… Read a mystery that has a disabled or survivor MC. 

    Once again under Diversity on SYKM.  Jeffrey Deaver has Lincoln Rhyme and Bruce Alexander has Sir John Fielding among many others.  I didn’t realize how many there were myself!

     
  3.  HERE’S LOOKING AT YOU KID… Read a mystery with a male lead PI.

    Now this may be a challenge since there are so many female MCs.  In the Job index of SYKM is Private Investigators.  J. D MacDonal’s oldie but terrific Travis McGee comes to mind.  Of course the foreign books seem to have more male leads these days. 

     
  4.  OVER AND OVER AGAIN… Read a mystery involving a serial killer.

    I did a small search on PBS for Serial Killers and came up with about 150 books.  Lori H did a search at a library site for “serial killers – fiction and found many titles.  Also the Dexter series by Jeff Lindsay involves a serial killer just to name one.

     

 

Bonus 1: Around the World:   Read six books set in a different location – Not the U.S.! 

Africa              Canada                        Greenland/Iceland     New Zealand
Asia                 Caribbean Islands      Mexico                        South America
Australia         Europe (England)       Middle East                South Pacific Islands

SYKM will be a big help for this one.  I’m going to try for places I’d like to visit.

 

BONUS 2: Follow Route 66 (The Mother Road), it began in Chicago and was the way to go to Santa Monica, California.  It went through eight states but we’ll go with six books.

http://www.historic66.com/

If you ever plan to motor west
Travel my way, the highway that's the best.
Get your kicks on Route 66!


Mary P  found this
A website that listed historic gas stations, restaurants, sights to see, etc., along Route 66, with the town names. (This is not a complete list.)

Illinois - Chicago, Hinsdale, Dwight, Odell, Pontiac, Madison, Atlanta, Normal, Springfield, Mt Olive

Missouri - St Louis, Pacific, Cuba, Wildwood, Springfield, Carthage

Oklahoma - Tulsa, OK City, Miami, Chandler, Stroud, Warwick, Clinton, Arcadia, Luther, Sayre

Texas - Shamrock, Amarillo, McLean, Conway, Vega

New Mexico - Montoya, Santa Rosa, Tucumcari, Albuquerque, Laguna, Thoreau, Gallup

Arizona - Navajo, Houck, Holbrook, Winslow, Flagstaff, Valentine, Kingman

California - Needles, Barstow, Pasadena

 

Finding books set in large cities, e.g., Chicago and LA should be easy. The Ben Kincaid series is set in Tulsa. Judith Van Gieson has 2 series set in Albuquerque. Tony Hillerman's Talking God is set in Gallup. Joan Brady has a couple mysteries set in Springfield, IL. I found mysteries set in Flagstaff, Pasadena, and Amarillo by using the keyword search and specifying the mystery category. 

Marla also typed in Route 66 and did a search.  There are all sorts of mysteries taking place along Route 66!  So hopefully this will be a fun trip! 

Also, I’m reading Carol O'Çonnell’s Find Me.  It’s a Mallory book but almost a stand alone.  I mention it for those people who want to go the easy route Mallory is following Route 66.  She drives from New York to Chicago to start her journey on Route 66 at it’s official Chicago starting point.  It might be a good summer read and so far my next stop will be in Missouri.  I’m going with individual books but the choice is yours!

Bonus 3:  Free Choice.  Choose one or all or none, your choice.

I think these don’t need any explanation so have fun!  Or just ignore this category.

  1.  SECOND HAND ROSE… Read the next in a series you’ve been reading. 
     
  2. THIS IS GOOD TOO!... Try another series written by a favorite author that you haven’t read.   
     
  3. THESE ARE GETTING MOLDY… Read six mysteries that have been sitting on your TBR or Reminder List for at least a year.
     
  4. HOME AND TRAVEL… Read a mystery that takes place in your home state and five states you’d like to visit.
     
  5. GIDDIUP COWBOY… Read a mystery with a western setting.
     
  6. MYSTERIES GO TO THE MOVIES… Read a mystery that’s been made into a movie, either big screen or TV.  
     
  7. ARTS, CRAFTS, FOOD AND DRINK WITH THE DOG… Read a cozy that involves a craft, food, beverage or an animal.
     
  8. HE’S GONE JIM… Read a mystery by an author we’ve lost in the last year.  A note about this one.  I found Tom Clancey, Elmore Leonard and Margaret Frazer If you know of anyone, please share the name.


Last Edited on: 11/14/13 1:49 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 2:43 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

We will have new banners to choose from later today.  Nita has agreed to create them for us.

These categories were suggestions by people who have worked previous challenges.  Only two categories were my ideas.  I always had a bit of trouble with the award winners and I know other people did too.  This award category is a little different.  Instead of a specific book, it's an author, any book he/she has written rather than an award winning book for a specific year.

I hope we have fun!

Side note the only book I actually had was the senior citizen book.  Becky actually gave me the idea and I didn't read the book yet.  How am I gonna last until January with it sitting in front of me?!!!  Have ta do what I did for 2013, gather the books and hide them until the end of the year. 



Last Edited on: 11/11/13 9:11 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 8:30 AM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
Posts: 9,179
Back To Top

Three banners are available in my signature. You should be able to right click and use Save Image As... to save the banner(s) to your computer and then upload to your signature via Settings.

I can add more if needed. :)

Thanks for hosting the challenge this year, Geri. I am in, of course! :)

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 9:02 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

Great banners as far as I'm concerned! 

Thanks, Nita

Date Posted: 11/11/2013 9:57 AM ET
Member Since: 4/1/2011
Posts: 270
Back To Top

Ooooh, Geri,

This challenge is going to be FUN! Woo-hoo!

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 12:10 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

Glad you like it Lori.  I hope others feel the same.

Date Posted: 11/11/2013 12:27 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,452
Back To Top

Thanks Geri--

Looking forward to scouting out new books to read!  Have to finish up the 2013 challenge--then make myself wait before reading books for the new challenge until 2014 (that might be a challeng in itself! smiley)

Date Posted: 11/11/2013 12:47 PM ET
Member Since: 7/29/2008
Posts: 1,520
Back To Top

Fantastic Geri...you outdid yourself.  Think I actually have 5-6 on my TBR...you knew I would have the Brit one! wink ... Shift+R improves the quality of this image. Shift+A improves the quality of all images on this page.  Looking forward to having lots of fun searching out all the others.  Don't think I'll get through this one  4x!!!!

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 1:39 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

Marla, I know I'm not going to do it 4 x either!  Route 66 is just for you.  wink

I had the senior citizen and two of the bonus books.  Otherwise, I spent the morning searching and haven't finished yet!



Last Edited on: 11/11/13 1:41 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 4:51 PM ET
Member Since: 8/27/2005
Posts: 4,127
Back To Top

Hi Geri, I love the main challenge categories, they are definitely a little harder to find, which makes them more fun to look for!  I'm going to do the Around the World bonus too since I love non-US mysteries the best. 

When I first started doing challenges I chose all my books right away but now I like to just choose a few at the beginning and see what develops during the year--finding the books is such a big part of the fun.

Thanks for the challenge!

Diane

 

 

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 4:59 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

The categories came from the suggestions by people who have been doing challenges.  Glad you like it Diane, I was a bit worried that it might be difficult or unappealing.  Some catagories I debated about including, but this is the diverse challenge.

You don't want to travel Route 66?  smiley

Bruce -
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 6:11 PM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2008
Posts: 3,412
Back To Top

 Oops, sorry.



Last Edited on: 11/12/13 10:27 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 8:28 PM ET
Member Since: 6/24/2009
Posts: 1,734
Back To Top

Geri - these sound wonderful!!!!!

No wonder you've been working on it since July. You put a lot of thought into this.

Thank you so much.



Last Edited on: 11/11/13 8:32 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/11/2013 8:34 PM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 3,101
Back To Top

Great job Geri ----  Looks pretty intimidating to me!!!!!

A reminder to all --- if you did not see it, there is another thread for LISTS ONLY.

Date Posted: 11/12/2013 2:21 AM ET
Member Since: 7/29/2008
Posts: 1,520
Back To Top

Diane...I am the same way...have a compulsion to find all of the IMMEDIATELY!!!  Think I am going to take your approach this year and just see what pops up along the way!

Have been playing around on SYKM for some of the catagories and what is really scary is how many of the authors I have read and forgotten about until I saw their name again!!  Of course, when you are "older than dirt" (as Geri says), I guess that is bound to happen!! LOL



Last Edited on: 11/12/13 2:22 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 11/12/2013 9:28 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

Becky, so nice to see you!  You can find everything on SYKM or right here on PBS.  Check out my suggestion notes for helpful hints.  Thanks for letting folks know there is a list page.

Marla, when I was putting it together that's what I discovered!  A world of authors I had loved and forgotten!

I actually only have the six bonus books that have been on my TBR for quite a while, another in the bonus section I found on my TBR, didn't even know I had it and the senior sleuth which I've had for a while.  When I came up with the category I was thinking of another book that was actually on my wish list.  I wasn't even sure if I'd get it in time for the challenge.  I worked on gathering not the actual books cause I don't have them, but the titles.  I still have some empty spots.  This may be a challenge I only do once.  surprise  Something that hasn't happened for a long time!  Well, a couple of years anyway.  !

Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Date Posted: 11/12/2013 1:36 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
Posts: 39,741
Back To Top

Nice group of books

Alice

Mary (mepom) -
Date Posted: 11/12/2013 4:09 PM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2009
Posts: 1,192
Back To Top

Geri,

I think your challenge list is great and easy to understand. This year, I am retired, so no excuses. LOL!!! Except for this and this and this, etc.

Thanks for doing this,

Mary (mespom)

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 11/12/2013 4:27 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

Mary (mespom), now that you're retired you'll have more to do!  When I first retired I couldn't figure out how I managed to do everything and work.  My favorite line is "You're retired now, you have time to do this and that." Oh sure!

Mary (mepom) -
Date Posted: 11/12/2013 6:15 PM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2009
Posts: 1,192
Back To Top

GERI, YOU ARE SO RIGHT!!!!!!!!

Date Posted: 11/12/2013 11:10 PM ET
Member Since: 4/1/2011
Posts: 270
Back To Top

Geri,

Well, I've found 4 books for the main challenge on my TBR, 2 more fit for the Route 66 bonus, 1 for around the world, and then about 8 more that I'll fit into one or another of the Free Choice bonuses! And still plenty of books to look for, new authors to discover... I'm looking forward to getting started!

~Lori

Date Posted: 11/13/2013 3:58 AM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2013
Posts: 640
Back To Top

A good challenge! I've found almost a dozen books already on my TBR or on my wish list, and I've ordered a couple more - a Sherlock Holmes set in the icy reaches of Minnesota and one of the Gabriel Allon (he's an art historian who's also Mossad) books I've been meaning to order for ages. Looking forward to the fun starting in January.

 

Date Posted: 11/13/2013 4:57 PM ET
Member Since: 7/29/2008
Posts: 1,520
Back To Top

Well, that idea didn't work out!!  Decided to get organized and took an old notebook, made one page for each of the categories I knew I didn't have on my TBR, and then started browsing SYKM and making a note of books that fit the category and sounded interesting,  That was all good...the BAD part is I also found a whole bunch of books I hadn't heard of but looked interesting and had nothing to do with the challenge!  So much, for getting the TBR pile under control!!! wink ... Shift+R improves the quality of this image. Shift+A improves the quality of all images on this page.

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 11/13/2013 5:37 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

Marla, I'm envious of MaryP who found so many books for the challenge on her TBR.  I was going through SYKM and have a pile of books on my Reminder List now!  I wasn't able to find titles to fit everything yet.  I admit I restrained myself and didn't look today.

 

Page: