Friday, January 18, 2013

The Year in Books

What I read in 2012

My favorite books from each month in 2012: (with excerpts or links from previous blog posts)

Emotionally Weird by Kate Atkinson (2001). If you have never read Kate Atkinson, start with Case Histories and the other Jackson Brodie mysteries and then if you are hooked on this author, as many of the library staff are, read Emotionally Weird which is a stand-alone novel about a college student in 1970's Scotland.

Believing the Lie by Elizabeth George (2012). 'If you like the BBC's Inspector Lynley series, read the series by Elizabeth George. Her latest in the series, Believing the Lie was a huge hit, the first of her books I read and the first book I read on an e-reader: an excellent book for readers who prefer novels to mysteries. It's un-put-downable in any format.'

White Corridor (Bryant & May #5) (2008) by Christopher Fowler. If you like quirky British mysteries, this series about the 'Peculiar Crimes Unit' is the book for you. Mentioned in passing in this blog post listing mysteries.

Monday Mornings by Sanjay Gupta (2012) was a quick and entertaining book about the inner workings of a hospital focusing on the morbidity and mortality meetings which take place in this fictional hospital on monday mornings. A television show of this book is about to premier on TNT network.

The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore (2010). A memoir which explores why two young men who both grow up in poverty in Baltimore, MD end up on such different paths in life.

Robert B. Parker's Lullaby by Ace Atkins (2012). Atkins continues the legacy of the late Robert B. Parker's  books about Boston detective Spenser. My review on GoodReads

Island Practice by Pam Belluck (2012) Biography of an eccentric doctor on Nantucket. My blog review 

Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight, by Alexandra Fuller (2003). The authors memoir of growing up in East Africa.  My blog review with a list of other African memoirs.

The Darling Dahlias and the Confederate Rose by Susan Wittig Albert (2012).  This is the 3rd in a charming series based in a small town in the Depression era South. 'Susan Wittig Albert, author of the China Bayles' herb farm and the Beatrix Potter mysteries, has a new series about the Darling Dahlias, a garden club in Alabama whose members solve mysteries. The first title is The Darling Dahlias and the Cucumber Tree. Albert's books are in the "cozy" mystery genre.' (From my blog post about Autumn reading 2010.)

The Tiger's Wife by Tea Obreht (2011). While this book club selection was not really a favorite of mine or of the group, it will provoke discussion and thought in most readers. The book has been very popular with most reading groups and has much to recommend it. Most of all, the author brings a lot of imagination and storytelling ability to her stories about growing up in a war-torn Balkan country. My blog review.

The Case of the Deadly Butter Chicken by Tarquin Hall (2012). The third in this author's humorous mystery series about 'India's most private detective, Vish Puri.' See Ellen's and my review of this series.

I spent the gloomy, grey months of December reading very light mystery paperbacks from the library's free paperback swap rack. I started this December bibliotherapy by rereading my own pile of M.C. Beaton mysteries. I especially recommend A Highland Christmas in which Loch Dubh's intrepid constable Hamish Macbeth creates some Christmas cheer in the cold dark winter of far northern Scotland. The library owns this book in hardcopy and as a downloadable ebook from Here is a link to the blog reviews of Beaton's books and related mysteries.

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