The half-way point

As of the end of June I had finished 84 books (and abandoned another eight) which is a pretty good start to the year. I consider anything I rate 3 stars or above to be reading time well spent and 70 (or 83%) of the books I’ve read have fallen into that category this year. While this is obviously good news for my reading it does make choosing ‘best of’ lists quite hard. Kerrie at Mysteries in Paradise is, once again, collecting ‘best crime fiction books of the year so far’ lists and after much struggling I’ve come up with 10:

Left off this list (because if I didn’t stop at 10 I’d have listed the lot) were a whole load of great books. Most of these are listed on my 2011 reviews page (a few books have not been reviewed but that can’t be helped)
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11 thoughts on “The half-way point

  1. Hey Bernadette,

    Great list! Comprehensive! I’m going to give a shout-out to Kris Farmen’s The Devil’s Share, one of my two favorite crime novels this year. Set in Alaska/Canada, with an entirely unexpected storyline and twists.
    Sounds like you’ve been busy this year!

    • Thanks Amy, I have actually been pondering that one – sounds like I need to add it to my pile. I love Alaska as a setting (a place I have wanted to visit ever since the TV show Northern Exposure). Haven’t gotten there yet but will do one day.

  2. Bernadette -That is a fine list of books :-). I really am glad that so much of what you’ve read this year has been worth the investment of time and energy. And thanks for summing all this up!

  3. Thanks for the list. Will duly note these books. I did read What Was Lost a few years ago, and Denise Mina’s Garnethill trilogy also, loved it. It does give a terrific sense of place in Glasgow, in addition to featuring a terrific, gutsy, smart woman protagonist, who takes care of business, and a riveting plot. Hmmm, maybe I just put my TBR lists on hold and reread Mina’s excellent series.

  4. Quite a few there I haven’t read Bernadette. I’m glad to see Katharine Howell and Kathryn Fox on the list

  5. As an aside, I am reading Mistress in the Art of Death, after borrowing it back from the friend I gave it to. She is a lover of historical mysteries, which I normally am not, and a former medical professional. She loved it.
    I, for whom this is a genre I avoid, got to page 140 and got hooked.
    This book (and probably the series) is a work of genius. And it’s educational. And, I like her point of view on so many things.
    I looked up your review and concur wholeheartedly with it. A wonderful character, science vs. superstition, the humanitarianism espoused. Amazing.

    • Glad you are enjoying this after all Kathy, I think Adelia is one of my all-time favourite characters. I only have one of this series left to read and am saving it up as the author died earlier this year and there will be no more. Very sad.

  6. Are we soul twins, Bernadette? I have only read the top six on your list but they would all get top ratings from me, too – and I am a very picky reader! Great list, and makes me resolve to read the others = I have read a Kathryn Fox but was not impressed, maybe I should give her another try. And despite getting bored with Hill, maybe I should give him another chance. I enjoyed the first Ken Bruen in this series (The Guards) but it will probably take me a while to get around to The Priest as I think it is quite late on in the series. The other one doesn’t appeal because of the subject matter.

  7. Question for the blog: My library does not have Death Mask by Kathryn Fox, but it has 3 others by her before that. Are any of them worth reading? And right now I’m not into hitting my budget for awhile.

    • Sorry I neglected to respond to this one Kathy, the other books are good but DEATH MASK was for me a cut above them, I would guess it will be released in your neck of the woods eventually if the others have been and your library might get a copy then

  8. Yes, Bernadette, I reluctantly parted with Adelia Aguilar, and now I’m having post-good-character slump, a similar malady to post-good-book slump. I don’t even like historical mysteries, but what do I know? Amazing story, character, ideas. Yes, Ariana Franklin aka Diana Norman wrote three more books, so I’ll have to parcel them out.

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