Swept up in the madness of moving house these last two weeks, it’s been interesting to look over my current book collection (as I boxed and unboxed it) and to work out what to read next. So to get back in the swing of things I am taking part again in the wonderful WWW Wednesday meme over at Taking on a World of Words.
The Three Ws are:
What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?
Here we go!
What am I currently reading?
I am a third of the way through So Pretty a Problem by Frances Duncan, one of a series of five classic detective novels from the 1950’s, reissued by Penguin last year under their Vintage label. I was introduced to Duncan’s works by golden age expert TomCat in his recent reviews of the re-prints. So Pretty a Problem is the impossible crime of the five books released so far, so of course I jumped at it. The story sees Duncan’s series detective, retired tobacconist and hopelessly old school romantic, Mordecai Tremaine trying to solve the impossible murder of infamous painter Adrian Carthallow.
The opening is wonderful, beginning with a sharp sound waking Tremaine from his beach dozing, and Helen Carthallow running out exclaiming ‘Please. Come Quickly. Please. I’ve killed my husband.’ The murder scene paints a different picture, but no one else could have been present at the time the gun was fired.
What did I recently finish?
I am making my way through the works of one of my favourite Golden Age Detective novelists, the marvellously erudite Edmund Crispin. Last week I closed the last pages of Swan Song from 1947, one of his three impossible crime novels. Set against the back drop (and satire of) Oxford university and the city opera house, the story tells the death of Edwin Shorthouse who is murdered in his locked and watched dressing room. Swan Song is an absolutely wonderful book with Crispin at the top of his lyrical and comedy form. My review of this will be up in my next post.
What do you think you will read next?
This is a really tough choice. Moving house has brought out so many books from the pile into view, and many of them are calling to me! I will definitely be reading Death On The Nile by Agatha Christie and re-reading He Who Whispers by John Dickson Carr, in preparation for the imminent head to head, spoiler loaded, face off of these two master works over at JJ’s and Brad’s blogs The Invisible Event and Ah Sweet Mystery. It’s going to be a great site to behold.
I also came across a lovely copy The Chinese Maze Murders. Part of the fascinating Judge Dee Chinese mystery series, penned by Dutchman Robert Van Gulik in 1951. After enjoying my first encounter with Judge Dee, I am looking forwarding to seeing how this series develops
What’s on your to read pile, and what top books have you read lately? What is your WWW list?