The Sunday Salon 2009-07-19: Week in Review

Books: then and now

I definitely had better quality reading this week than last. I read a wonderful true crime book about a case that took place in the early years of the field of professional detection called The Suspicions of Mr Whicher or The Murder at Road Hill House by Kate Summerscale. I then got back into fiction reading with Michael Robotham’s Shatter and Kate Alvtegen’s Missing which ended up being my 7th 5 out 5 rating for the year (out of 71 books so far).

I’m now reading my first book by another new (to me) author that many crime fiction bloggers have talked favourably about, Denise Mina’s Garnethill, and am listening to The Saladin Murders by Matt Beynon Rees whose first book was my favourite read of last year. I still have to squeeze in Ruth Rendell’s From Doon with Death and Peter de Jong’s Shadows Still Remain over the next week or so for different book group discussions. I’m waiting on the library for one of these and am beginning to think there’s a library hog out there somewhere who won’t give it up as it was due back a couple of weeks ago.

Arrivals and departures

Despite my good intentions to stop acquiring books while my TBR pile is so large 2 books I ordered from Book Depository arrived on my doorstep this week: Jo Nesbo’s The Redbreast (the first book in a series that many people are talking about) and Clare Langley-Hawthorne’s The Consequences of Sin which is a historical crime fiction novel by an Australian author I thought I should check out. In my favour though I did send off 8 books to bookmooch members so my overall number of books owned is slightly less than it was :)

Link Fest

I haven’t done as much online reading this week but a couple of things did catch my eye:

  • Australia’s moronic Minister for Communications has been named Internet Villain of the Year for his tireless progression towards censoring the internet in this country despite almost every expert consulted about the plan (technologists, police and child protection groups included) telling him the plan is doomed to failure.
  • The Productivity Commission (am I the only one who thinks that’s an oxymoron?)  in Australia released its final report on the parallel importation of books and has recommended the removal of any restrictions by 2012. In short what this would mean if introduced would be that book sellers in Australia would be able to import titles from the cheapest source for sale here rather than having to sell the version by the local publisher. The assumption is that this will make books cheaper here. I’ve been in two minds on this issue because books do cost a lot here in Australia (especially the ones I read which tend not to be mainstream best sellers which are subject to discounting). On the other hand I also really value being able to read a range of books by Aussie authors and know that the proposed dropping of restrictions will probably make it even harder for them to get published. We had a good discussion about the subject at Oz Mystery Readers (you have to be a member of the group to see the posts) and there’s good information at the Aussies for Aussie books site.
  • I discovered the bookworms carnival: a twice monthly blog which highlights reviews on a range of themes and is an excellent way to find new blogs that review. The 33rd carnival has just been posted and the theme was a broad “whatcha reading?” and upcoming editions will look at YA Fantasy, really-old classics and historical fiction. Lots of opportunity for bloggers to become involved and readers to find good recommendations.

5 thoughts on “The Sunday Salon 2009-07-19: Week in Review

  1. I’m not doing a great job of paring down my TBR list, either. I added nine titles only yesterday! Luckily, mine is just a list and not an actual pile of books. I’d be broke and out of storage space :-).

  2. You’ve got a lot of great books coming up this week!

    I hadn’t realized until last week that books were more expensive in Australia. In Canada, we don’t have import restrictions, but Canadian authors and the publishers that publish their books have access to grants to help things along; a necessary thing, considering how close we are to the States! I don’t know how well it works in terms of promoting Canadian authors, though.

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