As an unemployed person in dubious health* I ought not be spending money on frivolities but I couldn’t resist trying out a Vintage Mystery Box (aka Coffee and Crime but you can’t post coffee to Australia).
Kate from Cross Examining Crime is a classic crime aficionado and, I can now report, also a dab hand at preparing packages of joy. After negotiating with Kate about postage rates to Oz and asking her not to incorporate illegal foodstuffs in my package I signed up for a mystery box late last month. I was expecting it to take much longer to get here but this morning I collected my box from the post office and immediately abandoned my other chores so I could rush home to open it.
My package contained a newsletter-come-puzzle sheet, a Cluedo-themed drink coaster, two postcards and bookmarks, a Poirot-quoting tote bag and 2 nicely wrapped vintage crime books. What an absolute delight.
The books are both from authors I have never read which is exactly what I was aiming for in my quest to become a little more well versed in my favourite genre’s past. There is more to vintage crime than Dame Christie after all and I am woefully ignorant about most of the authors who reigned the genre in the past.
Even without having read the books yet I can heartily recommend the Vintage Mystery Box as a gift idea. The packages can be purchased as a one off or as a subscription service as often as you’d like. If you don’t want to buy one for yourself you can prompt your loved ones with the address of Kate’s Etsy store.
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I had another treat waiting at the post office earlier this week in the form of David Owen’s latest Pufferfish novel BIG RED ROCK. I am very much looking forward to settling down with this over the Christmas break but I was also thrilled to learn that Owen’s current publisher is in the process of re-releasing the first books in this clever, funny series that celebrates the best of Tasmania. The early books have been out of print for nearly two decades, meaning those of us who are late to the Pufferfish appreciation society have been unable to read them. Until now. The first book in the series, 1994’s PIG’S HEAD, is available now.
Although I haven’t read the whole series (yet) I am prepared to recommend them all for lovers of intelligent, slightly quirky crime fiction.
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*lest you worry too much, rest assured I really am doing perfectly fine both financially and health-wise; this year has just had a couple more hiccups than usual.