Eileen G. (movedtomaryland) - Reviews

1 to 18 of 18
The Blackheath Poisonings : A Victorian Murder Mystery
The Blackheath Poisonings : A Victorian Murder Mystery
Author: Julian Symons
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 7
Review Date: 12/19/2014


Reading a classic mystery writer like Symons is very rewarding . The plotting and the writing is impeccable, reflecting an era when writers and their publishers allowed for a more leisurely production schedule.


Brat Farrar
Brat Farrar
Author: Josephine Tey
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 28
Review Date: 12/11/2011


Classic Tey. Superb manipulation of complex plot. Characters who involve the reader, even when the ethics are ambiguous.


Charade
Charade
Author: John Mortimer
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
 4
Review Date: 3/13/2010


A witty mystery by the author of the Rumpole series, Charade takes place in 1944 at the English seaside. A young man is assigned to help an army film unit make a documentary . Then a sergeant falls to his death. Is it an accident? The timid hero is not convinced. Eccentric characters and situations abound.


Dancing Fish and Ammonites: A Memoir
Dancing Fish and Ammonites: A Memoir
Author: Penelope Lively
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 10/5/2018


A wonderful Memoir by a beloved writer, the book begin with establishing her perspective as an 80-year-old widow. Lively then views her life through the lens of a few objects that have stayed with her through the years, despite many moves and changes of circumstance.


Death of a Harvard Freshman
Death of a Harvard Freshman
Author: Victoria Silver
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 3/13/2010


A nicely-wrought academic mystery.


A Finer End (Duncan Kincaid / Gemma James, Bk 7)
A Finer End (Duncan Kincaid / Gemma James, Bk 7)
Author: Deborah Crombie
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 82
Review Date: 10/24/2014


Deborah Crombie is a masterful mystery writer, who seamlessly builds characters while she builds the plot. A Finer End is set in Glastonbury in England and Crombie is at her best in creating the atmosphere of the town and the historic Abbey.


The Finishing Stroke
The Finishing Stroke
Author: Ellery Queen
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 2
Review Date: 8/18/2015


Written in the inimitable mode of far-fetched cleverness of the original Ellery Queen, The Finishing Stroke provides clues for each of the 12 days of Christmas. We think, then, that we know the answer, but the truth emerges years later when Queen looks at his notes again and sees a pattern he had overlooked.

If you enjoy good writing and wrestling with "puzzle"mysteries, the early Ellery Queen will please you. (Some of the later book were written by imitators, rather than the original team of two cousins from Brooklyn who created Inspector Queen and his sophisticated son. The fact that both the elder and the younger Queens are called Ellery suggests the sort of doubleness that lies at the heart of the ingenious plots.

Red Herrings abound, but Queen plays fair. The clues are there if you can unravel them.


Florist's Daughter
Florist's Daughter
Author: Patricia Hampl
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.
 12
Review Date: 6/9/2018


This wonderfully evocative memoir is a record of a St. Paul's MN childhood that establishes a place, a Catholic upbringing, and two very individual parents. Every sentence is so beautifully written that I couldn't scan it, but it repaid every attentive moment I spent with it. If you love the english language, you'll love Florist's Daughter.


The Great Gatsby
The Great Gatsby
Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 635
Review Date: 12/11/2011


The Great Gatsby is probably the best American novel of the 20th century. It is certainly Fitzgerald's greatest book.


Icy Clutches (Gideon Oliver, Bk 6)
Icy Clutches (Gideon Oliver, Bk 6)
Author: Aaron Elkins
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 38
Review Date: 6/11/2015


I always enjoy Aaron Elkins, and book six of the Gideon Oliver series is cleverly plottws. As usual, Elkins displays his well-researched grasp of the setting, as well as forensic anthropology.

Still, this one is not one of my favorites. I seem to enjoy vineyards, European Cities, and the American southwest more than these Alaskan glaciers.


The Last Detective (Peter Diamond, Bk 1)
The Last Detective (Peter Diamond, Bk 1)
Author: Peter Lovesey
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 3
Review Date: 7/13/2015


Excellent. I started with a later book in the Peter Diamond series and enjoyed it so much that I'm starting from the beginning. Peter is the lovable, abrasive CID head who perseveres until he gets it right because justice matters more to him than buttering up his superiors, smoothing feathers, and getting along with everyone. There's always a fair but wholly unexpected twist of the plot, and Lovesey has great fun describing Diamond's ludicrous problems with any sort of gadget. Most entertaining.


Little Tiny Teeth (Gideon Oliver, Bk 14)
Little Tiny Teeth (Gideon Oliver, Bk 14)
Author: Aaron Elkins
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 14
Review Date: 6/16/2015


One of the most interesting Elkins I have read because it is set in the Amazon. I learned a lot about Chili, some remote tribes, and life around the Amazon and its tributaries.

I'm glad Elkins absorbed it all, so that I need not endure the humidity, the insects, and the other perils Gideon Oliver and friends endure.

Well plotted, as usual, with Gideon exhibiting his usual savior faire in solving the various mysteries.


Notes from a Small Island
Notes from a Small Island
Author: Bill Bryson
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 242
Review Date: 8/4/2011


Bill Bryson is one of the funniest writers I have read lately. This early book has some wonderful moments, especially if you have also travelled in England, stayed in B&Bs, and navigated tiny, hedge-lined streets.


The Photograph
The Photograph
Author: Penelope Lively
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.
 33
Review Date: 9/27/2018


Reverberations from one discovery, change lives. This Penelope Lively novel is especially poignant because by the close of the book, we discover that the people who should have known most about their dead wife, their dead sister, knew very little about her about her.


A Place of Execution
A Place of Execution
Author: Val McDermid
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.6/5 Stars.
 6
Review Date: 12/11/2011


One of the best mysteries I have ever read. I had no hint of the ending, but the clues are all there.


The Postman Always Rings Twice
The Postman Always Rings Twice
Author: James M. Cain
Book Type: Unknown Binding
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 9
Review Date: 12/11/2011


I do not really like hardboiled detective fiction, and like is the wrong word to describe my response to The Postman Always Rings Twice. Rather, likeable or unlikeable, this book is unforgettable.


The Summer House : The Clothes in the Wardrobe / The Skeleton in the Cupboard / The Fly in the Ointment (Movie Tie-In)
Review Date: 12/11/2011


I am grateful for my belated discovery of Alice Thomas Ellis.


A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
Author: Betty Smith
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 296
Review Date: 7/30/2011


I ordered A Tree Grows in Brooklyn because it appears on a book club's summer list. I vaguely remembered reading it in high school. Reading it now is a revelation. What a wonderfully dense, vibrant picture of the lives of the immigrant groups on Long Island. If you haven't read Tree in twenty years, pick it up again.


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