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Zozette's 2018 Challenge

2018 Category Challenge

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Edited: Jan 1, 6:59am Top

I am returning to LibraryThing after a long break. I think the last time I did a LT reading challenge was in 2014.

I have decided to have 18 categories - 5 large (12 books each) and 13 small (2 books each). Some books will end up in more than one category. I assume I will read, or listen to, about 70-75 books while doing this challenge.

I will be doing both the MysteryCAT and the ColorCAT.


🎧 Audiobook
📚 From my shelves
💰Need to buy

Edited: May 6, 1:16am Top

Category One - ColorCAT

1) January - BLACK

* The Black Echo 🎧 by Michael Connelly FINISHED

2) February - BROWN

*Brown Dog: Novellas 🎧 by Jim Harrison FINISHED 26 Feb

3) March - GREEN

*Wicked Plants 🎧 📚by Amy Stewart FINISHED

4) April - YELLOW

* The Yellow Brick Road 🎧 by Elizabeth Cadell FINISHED

5) May - BLUE

* Pale Blue Dot 🎧 by Carl Sagan

6) June - PURPLE

* The Purple Cloud 📱💰by M. P. Shiel

7) July - PINK

* Nightmare in Pink 🎧💰by John D MacDonald

8) August - GREY

* Agnes Grey 🎧💰 by Anne Bronte

9) September - METALLIC

*Silver: Return to Treasure Island 🎧 by Andrew Motion

10) October - ORANGE

* Moose by Kevin Jackson 📚 (orange cover)

11) November - RED

* Eye of the Red Tsar 🎧 by Sam Eastland

12) December - WHITE

* White Heat 🎧 by M.J. MCGrath

Edited: May 6, 1:18am Top

Category Two - MysteryCAT

January: Nordic Mysteries

* The Quarry 🎧 📚 by Johan Theorin FINISHED 1 Jan

February: Female Cop/Sleuth/Detective

* The Case of the Missing Marquess 📚by Nancy Springer FINISHED 2Feb
*The Grave’s a Fine and Private Place 🎧 by Alan Bradley FINISHED
10 Feb
March: Global Mysteries

* The Chinese Maze Murders 📱 by Robert van Gulik FINISHED

April: Classic and Golden Age Mysteries

* A Man Lay Dead🎧 by Ngaio Marsh FINISHED

May: Mysteries involving Transit

*The Lady Vanishes 🎧 by Ethel Lina White

June: True Crime

*Killers of the Flower Moon 🎧 by David Grann

July: Police Procedurals

*Crime on the Fens 🎧 by Joy Ellis

August: Historical Mysteries

* The Bookseller's Tale 🎧💰 by Ann Swinfen

September: Noir and Hard-Boiled Mysteries

* Zagreb Noir 📱💰edited by Ivan Srsen

October: Espionage

* Nancy Wake 🎧 by Peter FitzSimons

November: Cozy Mysteries

* Mrs Hudson and the Spirits' Curse 📱 by Martin Davies

December: Futuristic/Fantastical Mysteries

* The Disappeared 🎧 by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Edited: Jan 28, 10:16pm Top

Category Three - Books set in South America (or about South Americans)

1) Borges and the Eternal Orangutans 📚 by Louis Fernandeo Verissimo
2) Alive: the story of the Andes Survivors 🎧 by Piers Paul Read FINISHED
3) Wings of Madness: Alberto Santos-Dumont and the Invention of Flight 📚 by Paul Hoffman
4) No one Writes to the Colonel 📚 by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
5) Cosmos Latinos: An Anthology of Science Fiction from Latin America and Spain 📚
6) Conquistadors of the Sky: A History of Aviation in Latin America by Dan Hagedorn 📚
7) Blackout 📱 by Luiz Alfredo Garcia-Roza
8) Who Will Remember the People 📚 by Jean Raspail
9) The Robin Hood Guerrillas: The Epic Journey of Uruguay's Tupamaros 📱 by Pablo Brum
10) Mimosa: Life & Times: The Life & Times of the Ship that Sailed to Patagonia 📚 by Susan Wilkerson
11) Lily of Peru 📱 by David C Edmonds
12) Buenos Aires Noir 📱💰 edited by Ernesto Mallo

Edited: Mar 14, 4:49am Top

Category 4 - Books by authors mentioned in The Book Of Forgotten Authors by Christopher Fowler

1) A Wrinkle in the Skin by John Christopher 📚
2) The Birds 📱by Frank Baker
3) The Moving Toyshop 🎧 by Edmund Crispin FINISHED
4) The Ghost Train 🎧 Arnold Ridley FINISHED 11 Feb
5) The Other by Thomas Tryon 📱💰
6) The Chinese Maze Murders 📱 by Robert Van Gulik FINISHED
7) Year of the Ladybird 🎧 by Graham Joyce FINISHED
Also Some Kind of Fairy Tale by Graham Joyce 🎧 FINISHED

8) Mistress Masham's Repose 📱💰by T.H. White
9) The Exploits of Engelbrecht 📱by Maurice Richardson
10) The Purple Cloud 📱by M.P. Shiel
11) The Beetle 📱by Richard Marsh
12) Mischief 📱by Charlotte Armstrong

Edited: May 6, 1:20am Top

Category Five - ReReads (or more likely listening to the audiobook version of a book I have read in the past)

1) Mythago Wood 🎧 Robert Holdstock FINISHED
2) The Demon-Haunted World 🎧 by Carl Sagan FINISHED
3) Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors 🎧 by Piers Paul Read FINISHED
4) A Wrinkle in the Skin 📚 by John Christopher
5) He Who Fears the Wolf 🎧 by Karin Fossum FINISHED
6) Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee 🎧 by Dee Brown
7) Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy 🎧 by Douglas Adams FINISHED
8) A Scanner Darkly 🎧💰 by Philip K Dick
9) The Drowned World 🎧 by JG Ballard FINISHED
10) I Can Jump Puddles 📱💰 by Alan Marshall
11) The Shiralee 🎧 by D'Arcy Niland FINISHED
12) The Man Who Refused to Die 📚 by Barry Wynne

Edited: Dec 2, 2017, 3:47pm Top

Category Six - the two books written by my cousin Michael Holmes. I have read small sections of these but plan to read them cover to cover.

1) Vanishing Towns: Tasmania's ghost towns and settlements 📚

2) Tasmania's Vanishing Towns: Not what they used to be 📚

Edited: May 6, 1:23am Top

Category Seven - Books by Zoran Zivkovic

1) The Five Wonders of the Danube 📚
2) Twelve Collections and the Teashop 📚 FINISHED

Edited: Feb 15, 12:48am Top

Category Eight - Novels set in Tasmania

1) Wanting 🎧 by Richard Flanagan
2) The Sooterkin 📚 by Tom Gilling

Edited: May 19, 7:13am Top

Category Nine - Sherlock Holmes pastiches

1) The House of Silk 🎧 Anthony Horowitz FINISHED
2) Sherlock Holmes in America 🎧 by Martin H Greenberg

Edited: Mar 17, 6:23am Top

Category Ten - Books about Oz

1) Toto : The Dog-Gone Amazing Story of the Wizard of Oz by Michael Morpurgo FINISHED
2) The Wizard of Oz: A Steampunk Adventure 🎧 by SD Stuart FINISHED

Category Eleven - New Releases by my favourite authors

1) City of Endless Night 📱by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (release date 16 Jan 2018) FINISHED
2) The Shadow Killer 🎧💰by Arnaldur Indridason (release date 15 Mar 2018) FINISHED 17 Mar

The next five categories are listed under the headings that they appear in 1001 Books for Every Mood

Category Twelve - of Apocalyptic Vision

1) Hiroshima 📱💰 by John Hersey
2) Blindness 🎧💰 by Jose Saramago

Category Thirteen - To be afraid, be very afraid

1) Pan's Garden 📱 by Algernon Blackwood
2) The Turn of the Screw 🎧💰 by Henry James

Category Fourteen - Sift Through Clues

1) The Daughter of Time 🎧 by Josephine Tey
2) The Black Dahlia 🎧💰by James Elroy

Category 15 - To be Astounded

The Phantom Tollbooth 📱💰 by Norton Juster
One Hundred Years of Solitude 📱💰 by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Category 16 - to Slide Down the Rabbit Hole

The Little Prince 📚 by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
A Wrinkle in Time 🎧 by Madelaine L'Engle FINISHED

Category Seventeen - Miscelleous Fiction (that does not fit into any of my other categories
1) The Hearing Trumpet by Leonora Carrington 🎧📚FINISHED
2) Hell House by Richard Matheson 🎧 FINISHED
3) The Chalk Man by CJ Tudor 🎧 FINISHED
4) The Library of Souls by Richard Denney 📱FINISHED

Category Eighteen -Miscellaneous Non-Fiction

1) Evil Women: Deadlier than the Male by John Marlowe 📚FINISHED
2) Daring To Drive by Manal Al-Sharif 📱FINISHED 15 Feb
3) Last Woman Hanged by Caroline Overington 📱FINISHED 17 Mar

Nov 27, 2017, 6:07pm Top

Welcome back!
I just read a fun SH book called The Revenge of Moriarty. You might enjoy it.
Have a wonderful reading year.

Nov 27, 2017, 7:02pm Top

Thanks for the suggestion, mamzel

I need to think of three more small categories.

Nov 27, 2017, 8:15pm Top

Welcome back and enjoy your challenges! :)

Edited: Nov 28, 2017, 6:29am Top

Welcome back! I am very much intrigued by your category of forgotten authors, I'll be watching this!
ETA: I found a summary on the net and was very much surprised to find so many familiar names. http://neglectedbooks.com/?page_id=834
I think I need to check out the complete book.

Edited: Nov 28, 2017, 3:59pm Top

The book about forgotten authors is quite interesting and I am also surprised that a few authors I know have been listed.

One of them is John Christopher and I have read several of his books (The Death of Grass, Year of the Comet, The World in Winter, A Wrinkle in the Skin). I will reread one of those, if I can find a copy, as it will fit into two categories. A couple of those had different titles in the USA.

Edited to add - looking though my books the only JC book I own is 'A Wrinkle in the Skin'. I did once own 'No Blade of Grass' but my copy had about 30 pages printed twice and the other 30 pages missing so I had to get the book out of the library to read it completely.

Edmund Crispin - I am sure I read some of his books about 30-40 years ago.

jack Finney - I have read The Body Snatchers ' by him so I might read Time and Again

Eleanor Hibbert - I think, as a teenager and into my early twenties, I read all of the books she wrote under her Jean Plaidy pseudonym.

Richard Hughes - I am pretty sure I read High Wind in Jamaica while I was in high school.

Robert Van Gulik - I downloaded his first Judge Dee book a while back but have not got around to reading it.

Edited: Nov 28, 2017, 9:04pm Top

I haven't finished reading Forgotten Authors yet but from that website it seems there are even more authors I know listed - Shirley Jackson, Nevil Shute, Robert Louis Stevenson.

Edit to add. Fowler list on his website and the Forgotten Authors book are different. Jackson, Shute and RL Stevenson are not listed in the book.

Arthur Upfield is mentioned. I read the Boney series as a teenager as my mother owned them all. Reread the first one a few years ago and was a little shocked to realise how racist it is by today's standards.

Nov 28, 2017, 8:24pm Top

Welcome back!

Nov 29, 2017, 4:50am Top

>16 Zozette: >17 Zozette: I, too, loved John Christopher in my teens. Arthur Upfield, oh yes. I had been wondering what I would think of them now, but these I find hard to track down here in Germany. And I am glad I have kept all my Gavin Lyalls for eventual re-reads.

Nov 29, 2017, 3:46pm Top

With the Sherlock Holmes' books I decided to go with books I already own rather than the one mamzel suggested (which has gone onto my Wishlist)

Edited: Nov 29, 2017, 7:12pm Top

When I looked at my choices this morning I saw that I had selected very few books written by women, so I used my MysteryCat to rectify this a bit.

Nov 29, 2017, 7:12pm Top

Welcome back, I am looking forward to following along.

Edited: Dec 28, 2017, 7:10am Top

I am having a real problem finding an espionage themed book for the MysteryCat :( It isn't a sub-genre I like)

I might cheat a little and put in a biography on Nancy Wake (New Zealand/Australian spy during WW2)

Still looking for interesting books for my South American category.

Also need to select a noir/hard boiled mystery title.

Dec 1, 2017, 6:42am Top

>23 Zozette: I noticed that Gavin Lyall figured on the website for those Forgotten Authors, his Major Maxim series would fit well for the espionage theme. But a biography of a spy wouldn't be cheating, either.

Dec 1, 2017, 11:43am Top

>23 Zozette:, I also don't think a biography of a spy would be cheating at all, but I'll add, have you tried Joseph Kanon? I'm also not much for espionage, but his books are so grounded in characters that I enjoy them more and find them easier to follow. I just read his The Prodigal Spy a few months back, and really enjoyed it. It definitely fits the category, though I'd probably first classify it as a suspense novel. I think a number of his other books would work also, and he tends to focus on the WWII and then the Cold War era.

Dec 1, 2017, 6:21pm Top

I will certainly give Joseph Kanon some thought - I have until October to make my final decision on the espionage book.

I have filled up my selection for all categories barring the Miscellaneous ones (which are meant to be empty at this stage).

There are a few choices I am not that happy with in the MysteryCAT, the ColorCAT and the South American category but as I have yet to buy those books I can pull them out if I find a book I think I would prefer.

So far my January reads will be

The Black Tongue (audiobook)
The Quarry (I have the audio and paperback versions)
No One Writes to the Colonel (paperback)
The Birds (eBook)
THe Demon Haunted World (audio)
CIty of Endless Night (probably on audio)

Plus one or two more.

Edited: Dec 1, 2017, 6:55pm Top

And now to see if I can do the BingoDOG with the above books

1. Title contains a person’s rank, real or fictional ✅

2. Story involves travel ✅

3. A long-time TBR/TBR the longest ✅

4. Poetry or plays ✅

5. New-to-you author ✅

6. Autobiography/memoir ✅

7. Book with a beautiful cover (in your opinion) ❓
8. Book that fits at least 2 KIT’s/CAT’s ✅
9. Related to the Pacific Ocean ✅
10. Title contains something you would see in the sky ✅
11. Book bought in 2017 that hasn’t been read yet ✅
12. Number in the title ✅
13. Book that is humorous ❌
14. Book on the 1001 list ✅
15. LGBT central character ❌
16. Book set during a holiday ❌
17. Fat book - 500 plus pages ✅
18. X somewhere in the title ✅
19. Money in the title - any form of currency, type of payment, etc...❌
20. Book published in 2018 ✅
21. Relative name in the title (aunt, niece, etc...) ✅
22. Originally in a different language ✅
23. Published more than 100 years ago ✅
24. Title contains name of a famous person, real or fictional ✅
25. Read a CAT (middle square) ✅

If someone can suggest humorous book with a LGBT main character, set on a holiday with money in its title I would be very grateful :)

Edited to add - it doesn't have to be humorous as Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy can fill that square.

Dec 2, 2017, 11:13am Top

>27 Zozette: humorous book with a LGBT main character, set on a holiday with money in its title

*snork!* I would totally read that - it sounds really good!

Dec 2, 2017, 2:23pm Top

Welcome back! I admire your lists of books to be read. When I make plans, even a month ahead, they usually change.

Dec 2, 2017, 7:57pm Top

If I didn't plan well ahead I would finder it harder for the challenge.

I need to buy 20 audiobooks. That is quite doable as I am on a 2 books a month plan and I still have two to choose later this month.

Plus I need 7 Kindle books.

Dec 3, 2017, 12:48am Top

How silly am I? I was meant to have 18 categories for 2018. 5 big ones and 13 little ones but I only have 13 overall.

Dec 3, 2017, 1:20am Top

I will add the other 5 categories by using the book '1001 Books for Every Mood'.

Edited: Dec 7, 2017, 4:10am Top

I just removed The Innocence of Father Brown and put in Brown Dog: Novellas instead. That is locked in as I just bought the audiobook.

Still looking for a better book with 'pink' in its title.

Dec 7, 2017, 6:42am Top

>33 Zozette: My plans are about half with the author or title with the colour, and the other half using the colour of the cover. Which is possibly cheating, but I didn't want to buy things specially when I have so many TBRs to read, and it's meant a really interesting mix of books.

Dec 7, 2017, 2:49pm Top

>34 Jackie_K: - Color of the cover is definitely not cheating. That was one of the intents of the color challenge and allows quite a bit of flexibility. I'm planning on doing a mix of titles and covers as well.

Edited: Dec 7, 2017, 5:43pm Top

I though about using authors but when I checked my books the only Brown author I had were a couple of Rita Mae Brown books that I have already read.

However after reading your suggestions about the colour of the book I decided to look through my Reaktion animal series. I bought a whole heap of these books on special a few years ago and I have only read about half of them.

I have this orange one

Alas, none of the ones I own have a pink cover but looking though them on Amazon I find out that 'Duck', 'Flamingo' and 'Pig' do (but which of the three should I buy?).

Edited to add - I know that I own 'Giraffe' in these books but it wasn't with the others. I went searching my bookshelves and did not find 'giraffe' but I did find 'Tortoise', 'Donkey' and 'Parrot' in the wrong bookshelf and look

I think I might have already read 'Donkey'.

Edited: Dec 7, 2017, 5:25pm Top

I removed 'Oz Reimagined' and replaced it with Toto : The Dog-Gone Amazing Story of the Wizard of Oz by Michael Morpurgo because I was able to pick up the Audible version on special for. Only $5.61. An Oz book told from Toto perspective sounds like a fun read.

Edited: Dec 9, 2017, 2:54pm Top

I have made a start on my reading journal for next year. I wish I could do calligraphy and draw so it would look better.

Dec 9, 2017, 8:01am Top

It looks lovely! I love seeing how people organize their reading journals :)

Dec 9, 2017, 4:39pm Top

My threads in these groups *are* my reading journal :)

Dec 18, 2017, 12:30am Top

Three of my 2018 challenge books arrived from Book Depository today, two of which belong in the South American category and the other is the the MysteryCAT (February - female sleuth) . I am especially looking forward to reading Latin American sci-fi.

Dec 18, 2017, 6:28am Top

>41 Zozette: Oh, the one on the right has a gorgeous cover!

Dec 18, 2017, 3:37pm Top

Welcome back! Really interesting choices I see on you lists. And I like your reading journal. My only reading journal is LT, but I'd love to find a way of getting more little drawings into my daily life...

Dec 18, 2017, 5:26pm Top

>41 Zozette: I love that cover of The Case of the Missing Marquess. My copy isn't nearly so pretty.

Dec 18, 2017, 5:49pm Top

>42 scaifea:
>44 virginiahomeschooler:

Yes, it is a delightful cover.

Edited: Jan 1, 5:17am Top

I just finished my first read which I started yesterday. It was The Quarry and it is my choice for Nordic crime in the MyteryCAT.

I liked the chapters that covered the story of what happened in 1958 rather than the more modern part of the story. The two stories or only loosely connected to each other. Overall I give the book 3.5/5

Edited: Jan 3, 3:33pm Top

I finished Toto: The Dog-Gone Amazing Story Of the Wizard Of Oz .

It was a rather faithful retelling of the original book. However the ending is quite different which I found annoying. It was if the author got 3/4 through the story and decided to end it there. I c an only give it 2.5/5.

Jan 3, 9:17pm Top

I just ordered a mystery box of books off Australian eBay. The listing said that there will be at least 4 books. Genre listed were Crime, Spy, Action and Adventure. I will endeavour put at least one of these books into my challenge.

The price was $AUD19 with free delivery.

Edited: Jan 9, 1:06am Top

I just finished listening to Mythago Wood by Robert Holdstock. It is in my ReRead Category. I think it has been more than 30 years since I read it, though a paperback copy has been sitting among my books all those years.

It started off slower than I remember but it was as good as I remembered. I thought the narrator (Rupert Degas) was good apart from a couple of his female characters. I give the book 4.5/5. Unfortunately no other book in the Ryhope Wood series is available on Audible. If I get time I might read the second book Lavondyss later in the year.

Jan 12, 6:34pm Top

I have finished listening to A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle. I though I would read it before the movie came out

I was a little disappointed mainly because I did not really like the characters except for the ‘old ladies’. I might have liked the story a lot more if I had first read it as a child.

Jan 14, 10:10am Top

Maybe I should re-read it as well. I read it so many years ago, and loved it. I also remember all the drama that went on, - so many people trying to have it banned.

Jan 14, 10:30am Top

Welcome back. You have some great categories.
>16 Zozette: I would recommend reading Time and Again by Jack Finney. It's a wonderful book.

Jan 14, 9:17pm Top

I had Time and Again on my Audible Wishlist until I realised it was the abridged version :(. I prefer audiobooks because I have arthritis in my fingers and often have trouble turning a page. I might get it on Kindle because swiping is easier than page turning.

Jan 14, 9:24pm Top

After reading it I am surprised that people try to get A Wrinkle it Time banned as it has a rather religious overtone.

Jan 15, 12:37pm Top

>54 Zozette: That was the exact reason why some wanted it banned. It's listed as #23 in ban efforts. Some felt it was "to Christian" while others felt that it was the exact opposite, believing that it gave different views of good, evil, etc. that what doctrine said.

When I read it, I just saw it as a wonderful adventure.

Edited: Jan 15, 3:07pm Top

I am non-religious and wasn’t expecting the mention of Jesus and God in the book and I admit it did pull me ‘out of the story’ a little.

However I do not see it as a reason for banning a book for its Christian overtones any more than I would want to see a book based on Norse legends banned.

I finished listening to The Moving Toyshop by Edmund Crispin last night. It was an OK book but I thought it dragged a bit towards the end. I might read more in the series if I find the time to do so. 3.5/5.

Jan 15, 4:55pm Top

It's hard to find a good reason for banning a book!

Edited: Jan 16, 2:38pm Top

Yesterday I started and finished City of Endless Night by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. It is the 17th book in the Pendergast series and if I was to rank the books in order to best to worst this book would be in the lower third. It is a Pendergast/D’Agosta story and I think suffers from not having any strong female characters though a couple of the regular female characters do make small ‘guest appearances’. It also suffers from not having any quirky minor characters. The murders were interesting enough but I thought ‘the how’ was more interesting than ‘the who’. 3.5/5.

Edited to add - had I listened to the audiobook rather than reading the Kindle version I might have given this book a 4/5. Rene Auberjonois narration is always excellent but unfortunately this book has not been released at Audible yet.

Jan 21, 12:04am Top

Yesterday I finished listening to The Black Echo by Michael Connelly. It fits into my ColourCat category. It was an OK read but I am not sure if I will read any more of the Harry Bosch series. 3.5/5.

Jan 26, 8:45pm Top

I have finished two more books -

The Drowned World by JG Ballard. This was for my reread category. I first read this book about 35 years ago when I read several of Ballard’s book.

This time around I disliked the story, Though I liked the world Ballard created I absolutely detested the blatant racism in the book. I realise that the book was written decades ago but the stereotype were quite offensive. 2/5.

The second book was The Hearing Trumpet by Leonora Carrington. It was a fantastic read, funny, silly and imaginative. I loved the character of 92 year old Marian and also her friend Carmella. I alternated between the paperback version and the audiobook. This is a book I am likely to return to again and again. 4.5/5.

Edited: Feb 1, 3:12am Top

I have just fiNished listening to Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors by Piers Paul Read which fits into two of my categories - South America and Rereads.

I was 14 years old when the Andes Survivors were rescued and I remember watching clips about on my local news and reading a few articles about it in the newspaper. In 1975, my sister read the book and then handed it to me saying I should read which I did. I loved it and soon after I bought my own copy. I ended up losing that copy a few years later but not before I read the story for a second time. I think I lent it to someone and it was never returned.

Eventually I came across a second hand 1st edition hardback copy which is the copy I have today. I read this copy after buying it but I think that that was more than 15 years ago.

Since then I have read the three books written by a survivor that have translated into English (those of Nando Parrado, Dr Robert Canessa, and of Pedro Algorta).

I know some of my friends have refused to read this book because the story they say is about cannibalism. However that is only a small part of the story - this story is about surviving in the harshest of conditions, about loving and caring for one’s friends, about brave acts and about the triumph of the human spirit.

Even today, 45 years after the event, Nando Parrado remains one of the people in this world who I admire the most.

End of rant.

I give the audiobook version the same rating I give the printed book 5/5.

The narrator is Paul Ansdell.

Jan 31, 2:42pm Top

>61 Zozette: Great review!

A couple of years ago I read Miracle in the Andes : 72 days on the mountain and my long trek home by Nando Parrado and was very impressed. I hate to see the number of times this has been tagged "cannibalism" when the major topic was courage. Parrado is worthy of your admiration!

Feb 4, 12:12am Top

I really liked Nando’s book but I think I enjoy Pedro’s more, possibly because Pedro’s story has not been covered as much as Nando’s or Canessa’s have been over the years.

I finished The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer which features Enola Holmes, the younger sister of Sherlock. A good addition to my Sherlockian collection. 4/5.

Edited: Feb 17, 5:40pm Top

Since I last posted to this thread I have read 5 books.

Evil Women by John Marlowe. I only bought this book because I was going to an appointment and thought I might have a bit of a wait. I had forgotten to take a book with me. This book was cheap and is a true crime book covering a few dozen different women with only a few pages devoted to each. A rather ordinary book. 2.5/5 I put this book in my Miscellaneos Non-Fiction category.

The Grave’s a Fine and Private Place by Alan Bradley. Another exciting adventure with Flavia de Luce. I listened to this on audiobook. I really enjoyed it 4/5. It went into my Mystery Cat.

The Ghost Train by Arnold Ridley. Audiobook. This is a play and the Audible book comes with a full cast. I do not particularly like full cast recordings and in this case some of the actors sounded similar and it made it hard to work out who was who. 3/5. Forgotten Author category.

The Demon Haunted World by Carl Sagan. This book is in my ReRead Category. I loved this book when I read it 10 to 12 years ago but I found he audiobook less enjoyable. Parts of it were very interesting but there were sections that just droned on. That might have been partly due to the narrator, or else maybe I only skimmed these parts when I read the paperback (?). 3.5/5 but I will still rate the printed version 4.5/5.

Daring to Drive by Manal Al-Sharif. An interesting biography by a Saudi woman helped organise the Women2Drive movement in her country. It covers far more than just women not being allowed to drive. It looks at the education of females, how difficult it is to get work, the guardian system, how difficult it is for a woman to rent a place to live etc. 4/5. This book went into my Miscellaneous Non-Fiction category.

Feb 17, 10:31am Top

Looks like a good variety of reading! Glad you liked the new Flavia. I enjoyed it too.

Feb 26, 8:14pm Top

>61 Zozette:
Hmm, I remember not reading this when I was young because the cannibalism part was such a big selling-point and I thought it would revel in that. Thanks for that review, I might actually give it a shot now.

Edited: Mar 20, 7:23am Top

>66 -Eva-: -Eva-: I hope you enjoy it if you get around to reading it.

I just finished listening to Brown Dog: Novellas, a collection of six Novellas by Jim Harrison.

I enjoyed the stories. I liked the character of Brown Dog and also the characters of his step-daughter Berry (who suffered from fetal alcohol disorder) and also the character of his crafty Uncle Delmore. 4/5.

Mar 21, 12:01am Top

I haven’t posted of late, mainly because I have been ill. That has not stopped me from reading (or mainly listening) to a number of books. Since I last posted I have finished nine books.

Hell House by Richard Matheson. A ghost/horror story which I thought was boring. Miscellaneous fiction category. 2.5/5

Year of the Ladybird by Graham Joyce. It is also published under an alternative title ‘The Ghost in the Electric Blue Suit’. This is the first book I have ever read that was written by Graham Joyce but it will not be my last. Joyce is listed in my forgotten author book and I am amazed that such a good author is not better know especially as he did not die until 2014.

This is a wonderful book but it only has some minor supernatural elements and in reality it is more of a coming of age story. 4/5.

The Wizard of Oz: A Steampunk Adventure by SD Stuart. An OK retelling of the Oz story but I am not in any hurry to read any more in the series. 3.5/5. Oz category.

The Library of Souls by Richard Denney. I read this book because I follow Richard’s channel on YouTube. This is a middle grade ghost story and I enjoyed it. 4/5. Miscellaneous fiction category.

Some Kind of Fairy Tale by Graham Joyce. A 15 year old girl goes missing but 20 years later she knocks on her parents’ door. She has returned but she has not aged in the 20 years she has been away. Her brother does not believe her story and he tries to find out where she has been and why she has not aged. I really enjoyed this story. 4.5/5.

The Chinese Maze Murders by Robert Van Gulik. This fitted into my MyteryCAT (Global Mystery) and also into my Forgotten Authors category. Historical murder mystery set in China. I plan to read more books in the Judge Dee series. 4/5.

The Shadow Killer by Arnaldur Indridason. I downloaded the Audible version of this book the day it was released. It is the second book in the Flovent and Thorson series and is set in 1941 during the British/US occupation of Iceland in especially like the character of Thorson, a young Canadian born son of Icelandic parents who is attached to the US army and who sent to assist Iceland’s only detective when it looks like a murder might involve the military. 4/5.

Last Woman Hanged by Caroline Overington. A well researched look at the case of Louisa Collins, the last woman hanged in New South Wales. I am not sure if she was guilty or not, but it took 4 trials before a guilty verdict was reached so there are some very serious doubts about her conviction. Miscellaneous non-fiction category.

Wicked Plants by Amy Stewart. After reading this book I am almost scared to go out into my garden :). 3.5/5. In my ColorCAT category because it is a green book.

Mar 21, 5:03am Top

I hope you're feeling better now!

Mar 21, 9:11am Top

Sorry to hear you've been under the weather, but it's good you've felt like reading.

Mar 21, 1:21pm Top

Agreeing with the above: sorry you've not been feeling well, but glad you've felt OK enough to read!

Mar 21, 5:56pm Top

I'm glad to see that The Shadow Killer was good! :)

Mar 22, 2:44pm Top

Enforced reading time.

Mar 29, 3:09pm Top

Hope you are feeling well now. Looks like your reading time was well-spent though!

Edited: May 20, 7:55pm Top

Been quite a while since I posted mainly because my iPad died and because of arthritis in my fingers I find it hard to type on my smaller tablet. I have a new iPad now.

The weather in my city has been atrocious with several suburbs getting flooding. Luckily for me there was only minor damage to my place.

The cold, wet weather hasn’t been good my arthritis either. Besides my fingers I have arthritis in my knees, ankles and shoulders.

However I have read 21 books since I last posted. Before I started this post I thought it was only about 10 but I checked my reading journal and it is 21.

So I will list them over several posts. A few each day until I catch up.

The Shiralee by D’Arcy Niland. Audiobook. In my re-read category. I first read this book as a teenager which was about 45 years ago. It is about a man who has to travel around the countryside looking for work. He has his four year old daughter with him and the word ‘shiralee’ means burden. A great Australian over. 4.5/5

He Who Fears The Wolf by Karen Fossum. Audiobook. My favourite Karen Fossum novel. I first read the printed version about 5 years ago. The portrayal of the three main characters, who are all mentally disturbed, is excellent 5/5.

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor. Audiobook and Kindle. I am making an effort to read more science fiction that is not British or American. The author of this novella is Nigerian-American but the main character is from a tribe in Namibia. I liked the character but if I read future novellas in this series I think I will get them only on Kindle. 3.5/5

A Man Lay Dead by Ngaio Marsh. Audiobook. I read this for my Mystery Cat. I read many of my mother’s Ngaio Marsh books when I was a teen but I am not sure if this was one of them. It was her first book and I found it a little dull but I will try to read at least a couple more of her books, maybe next year. 3/5.

May 20, 11:07am Top

>75 Zozette: Glad to hear you got a new iPad, but sorry to hear that the weather has been bad and affecting your arthritis. He Who Fears the Wolf was excellent! Looking forward to the rest of your updates :)

May 20, 8:28pm Top

It is autumn here and my arthritis is always worse in changeable weather. Once winter sets in it improves.

Next four books

Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. Audiobook. Narrator - Stephen Fry. Added to my re-read category. I expected to like this a lot more than I did as I loved the book when I first read it, and I usually like Stephen Fry narrating. However I have watched the miniseries several times and maybe Stephen’s voices were too different from the TV actors. 3.5/5.

The Celebrated Cases of Judge Dee translated from the Chinese by Robert van Gulik. These were original Judge Dee stories and I think I prefer the Judge Dee which van Gulik actually wrote more. The downside of the Judge Dee stories are the descriptions of torture and execution. Such things were in the original stories as a deterrent to crime. 3/5

Lock and Key: Initiation by Ridley Pearson. Audiobook. Lock is Sherlock Holmes, and Key is James Keyes Moriarty and they are teenage boys at a private boarding school in the USA. It was an OK book but I don’t feel any great urge to read more in the series not with so many other Sherlock Holmes novel to read 3/5.

The Yellow Brick Road by Elizabeth Cadell. Audio. I enjoyed this book. A young woman is knocked out and as she regains consciousness she sees a man walking a goat down a London street , her only clue to what happened to her. Despite being told that it must have been a hallucination she begins her own investigation 4/5.

May 21, 1:37pm Top

>77 Zozette: I know what you mean about voices. I don't think I'll ever hear anyone's voice but Alan Rickman's as the robot!

Edited: May 23, 12:44am Top

I have only seen the movie once so I do not really imagine Alan Rickman’s voice. I am not sure who did the TV series Marvin voice.

Next four books

The Dry by Jane Harper. Audiobook. Set in an outback town in Australia. A mother and her son are murdered and later the body of the father is found. Was it a murder/suicide, or was someone else the killer. 4/5.

The Silent Land by Graham Joyce. Audiobook. The third James Joyce book I have listened to. A husband and wife are buried in an avalanche. The husband rescued his wife but are they really alive or not. 4/5.

Silas Soule : a short eventful life of moral courage by Tom Bensing. Kindle. Doesn’t seem to be a touchstone for this book and I forget how to create one. It is a biography of the army captain who disobeyed an order and refused to, or let the men order his command, opened fire on women and children during the Sand Creek Massacre. He later testified against Colonel Chivington only to be murdered a few weeks later. Silas Soule should be better known than he is. 4/5.

The House With a Clock in its Walls by John Bellairs. Hardback. Middle grade book. I enjoyed it but I though the ending was a bit of a disappointment. 3.5/5

May 24, 8:28am Top

>79 Zozette: I've liked every Graham Joyce book that I've read so far (5) including that one. Not as many as I would like to though and it's a real shame there won't be any more new ones. At least there's still the rest of his back catalogue for me to get to at some point.

Edited: May 24, 9:29pm Top

The other two I have listened to are Some Kind of Fairy Tale and Year of the Ladybird aka The Ghost in the Electric Blue Suit. I loved Fairy Tale the most. I have now started reading The Tooth Fairy.

I think I will sad when I finish his bibliography. I will try to spread the rest over a couple of years.

May 25, 5:54am Top

The Tooth Fairy has been my favourite of his works so far. At least he was quite prolific with his writing so there's still plenty more for us to get to.

May 29, 9:21pm Top

Next four books.

Twelve Collections and the Teashop by Zoran Zivkovic.
Limited edition hardback. I have been trying to collect all of Zivkovic’s books and I think this is one of his best collection of short stories. 5/5.

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz. A moving coming of age book. 4/5.

The Reckoning by Yrsa Siguradottir. Audiobook.
A time capsule that has been buried for 10 years is unopened. A class of 13 year old had written down what they thought the world would be like. One of the notes predicts the deaths of 6 people and one after another people start to die. 4/5.

Cherringham: A Cosy Crime Compilation (Cherringham 19-21) by Neil Richards and Matthew Costello. Audiobook. No touchstone yet. 3 novellas. Not as good as previous Cherringham book. I think I am getting bored with the little town. 3/5.

I really need to get back on track with my challenge. I am reading too many books that don’t fit into my categories.

I am already thinking about next year’s challenge and the challenge I am considering is much more flexible that my current one.

Jun 3, 9:33pm Top

>75 Zozette:
Hope the weather has turned for the better!

>77 Zozette:
An audio reader can be the killer of a good book. Or fix a mediocre one. :)

Jun 7, 9:39pm Top

Beautiful sunny day today but windy.

I hope I can catch up completely with listing my books by the end of the weekend.

Murder Takes The High Road by Josh Lanyon. Audiobook. Male/male murder mysteries. I like Josh’s mysteries. I tend to skip the sex scenes because I find them boring, I do the same with books about heterosexual couples. This one is about a librarian, Carter, who is taking a tour in Scotland with other fans of a famous mystery writer. Along on the tour is a mysterious stranger that Carter befriends. 3.5/5

The Blue Tattoo: The Life of Olive Oatman by Margot Mufflin. Audiobook. Interesting biography about a young woman who was on Indian captive for 5 years. 4/5.

My Mother, A Serial Killer by Hazel Baron. Audiobook. When she was 9 years old Hazel’s father died and Hazel soon suspected he was murdered by her mother. Two more men were to die when Hazel was a teenager. 4/5.

The Magician Murders by Josh Lanyon. Audiobooks. OK mystery. 3/5.

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