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March MysteryKIT - Golden Age

2020 Category Challenge

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1majkia
Edited: Feb 14, 3:31pm Top



Welcome to the March MysteryKIT! This month we're highlighting Golden Age Mysteries. These are usually books written in the 1920s and 1930s although some folks expand that to include newer books that are written in the same formula and style.

If you think a book fits the category, I'm not going to argue! Read what you feel fits!

Here's a tagged list: https://www.librarything.com/tag/Golden+Age+Mysteries

Don't forget to update the wiki: https://wiki.librarything.com/index.php/MysteryKIT_2020#March:_-_Theme:_Golden_A...

2majkia
Feb 14, 4:59pm Top

I'll be reading Unnatural Death.

3christina_reads
Feb 14, 6:03pm Top

I do love a Golden Age mystery! Right now I'm planning on Cold Steal by Alice Tilton (a.k.a. Phoebe Atwood Taylor), which was first published in 1939.

4Robertgreaves
Feb 14, 6:26pm Top

I will probably read an Agatha Christie for this. I'm looking at Cards on the Table as the most likely.

5JayneCM
Edited: Feb 14, 6:54pm Top

Confession - I have never read an Agatha Christie! So I will definitely have to choose one.
Or the next month of the Lord Peter group read.

6clue
Edited: Feb 14, 6:51pm Top

I'm planning on Whose Body? by Dorothy L. Sayers.

7NinieB
Feb 14, 6:54pm Top

>5 JayneCM: I'm so jealous! In the 1930s, she wrote so many great books. I would love to read Death on the Nile (1936) for the first time.

Fortunately, I have lots of other golden age to choose from.

8JayneCM
Feb 14, 6:56pm Top

>6 clue: I think the reason I have never read Christie is that I cannot seem to get the order straight. Is there any real order? I know there are different 'sets' and I am guessing there are probably some stand alones as well. There are so many I find it all a bit daunting!

9thornton37814
Feb 14, 9:21pm Top

I will read the Dorothy L. Sayers book corresponding to the group read. I think it's Unnatural Death. I suspect I'll be finishing the February one in March if the audio doesn't come in soon, but since I have a long drive on the 29th, there's a little chance I might finish it that day if it comes in before then.

10Robertgreaves
Feb 15, 5:45am Top

>8 JayneCM: I am reading her complete ouevre as a long term project and am just going by chronological order according to wikipedia.

11JayneCM
Feb 15, 5:56am Top

>10 Robertgreaves: Perfect! I found the list on Wikipedia so I will start with The Mysterious Affair at Styles.

12sallylou61
Feb 15, 9:53am Top

>11 JayneCM:. If you are doing the BingoDOG challenge, The Mysterious Affair at Styles will qualify for the published in 1820 or 1920 square since it was published in 1920.

13DeltaQueen50
Feb 15, 2:12pm Top

I will most likely be reading Dancers in Mourning by Margery Allingham.

14LibraryCin
Edited: Feb 15, 2:49pm Top

I'm not sure if I'll do this one. I have nothing obvious on the tbr. I have a few mysteries set in the 1920s and 1930s, but I'm not sure they really fit.

A Cast of Killers / Sydney D. Kirkpatrick

15LittleTaiko
Feb 15, 2:55pm Top

I'll be reading the next up in my Agatha Christie reread project - The Witness for the Prosecution.

16JayneCM
Feb 15, 7:13pm Top

>12 sallylou61: Fantastic! Thank you for pointing that out for me!

17leslie.98
Edited: Feb 16, 12:07pm Top

I am a fan of the GA mysteries so I will probably read several :)

I will definitely be reading:
Unnatural Death by Dorothy L. Sayers (1927) along with >9 thornton37814:
The Stoneware Monkey by R. Austin Freeman (1938)
Death of a Doxy by Rex Stout (1966)

I will probably read The Puzzle of the Silver Persian by Stuart Palmer (1934) unless I read it in Feb. & maybe a Nicholas Blake or Edmund Crispin or Michael Innes...

18christina_reads
Feb 17, 2:47pm Top

>8 JayneCM: Just wanted to say that there's absolutely no need to read Agatha Christie's books in order, unless of course you want to! The later books don't spoil the earlier ones (at most you'll get an oblique reference, but nothing that gives anything away), and there are no story arcs that span multiple books.

19JayneCM
Feb 19, 1:19am Top

>18 christina_reads: I thought that might be so. I guess it is just my love of order that makes me want to have some sort of plan for reading them!

20LadyoftheLodge
Feb 20, 11:17am Top

I will be reading anything by Agatha Christie! I am thinking of Death on the Nile or The Mysterious Affair at Styles.

21lowelibrary
Edited: Feb 29, 7:20pm Top

I am also reading Agatha Christie. My choice The A.B.C. Murders

22lsh63
Mar 1, 6:40am Top

I'm going to read Agatha Christie of course! It will be Murder in Mesopotamiafor me. It's always fun when I find a book of here that I haven't read yet.

23MissWatson
Mar 1, 8:50am Top

The first Maigret books were written in the thirties, so I'm eyeing one of those.

24Crazymamie
Mar 1, 11:15am Top

I have The Poisoned Chocolates Case in the stacks, and I might also read an Agatha Christie.

25streamsong
Edited: Mar 15, 3:57pm Top

I'll be reading The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan. It's a tad earlier, first published in 1915.

I've also requested the movie from the library to watch after I've read it.


I will move this to the April espionage read.

26DeltaQueen50
Mar 2, 10:58am Top

I started the month off with a classic Dorothy Sayers. Gaudy Night was excellent.

27leslie.98
Mar 2, 12:51pm Top

>26 DeltaQueen50: I too started off with a Dorothy Sayers - in my case, Unnatural Death (1927). The Ian Carmichael audiobook was excellent and Miss Climpson is such a fun character!

I then proceeded to a Nero Wolfe book - The Father Hunt (1968). It might be considered late for the Golden Age but Stout started writing this series in the 1930s and its style is definitely GA.

28thornton37814
Mar 2, 6:34pm Top

I will find something for the Golden Age in case the Dorothy Sayers book doesn't arrive in time to complete. It's still showing 4 weeks estimate. I probably won't look until I get home from the Outer Banks though.

29christina_reads
Mar 2, 6:42pm Top

>24 Crazymamie: Oh, I hope you enjoy The Poisoned Chocolates Case -- I thought it was great!

30NinieB
Mar 3, 7:10pm Top

>24 Crazymamie: >29 christina_reads: The Poisoned Chocolates Case is quite a tour de force. Kind of meta, and sort of a satire on detective fiction.

31NinieB
Mar 3, 7:12pm Top

>27 leslie.98: I have also jumped right into the month with Unnatural Death. I enjoyed it so much I'm starting another 1920s tale, The Red House Mystery.

32MissWatson
Mar 4, 4:07am Top

I have finished Un crime en Hollande, first published in 1931, where Maigret has a case in the Netherlands. A little odd, compared to others, as Maigret doesn't have a word of Dutch and must rely on translation to solve the case.

33leslie.98
Mar 4, 12:32pm Top

I finished The Carter of 'La Providence' by Georges Simenon, also known as "The Crime at Lock 14" (1931). I think that the new title came with the new translation by David Coward...

34MissWatson
Mar 5, 3:17am Top

>33 leslie.98: An amazing number of the early Maigrets are set on the seaside or on the canals.

35leslie.98
Mar 5, 4:14pm Top

>34 MissWatson: I wonder if Simenon spent a lot of time on the water!

36mysterymax
Mar 5, 5:34pm Top

>25 streamsong: Don't be surprised, but the movie has a lot of changes.

37leslie.98
Mar 5, 8:12pm Top

I impulsively decided to reread Glimpses of the Moon by Edmund Crispin -- partly because G fits this month's AlphaKIT. This is another whose date is later than might be expected (1977) but it is the last book of a series started in the 1940s.

38MissWatson
Mar 6, 3:40am Top

>35 leslie.98: According to his German Wikipedia entry, he did. He spent six months on the rivers in a boat in 1928, writing on board, and there must have come a lot of books out of it. I think I'll pick L'écluse N° 1 next.

39leslie.98
Mar 6, 2:40pm Top

Interesting! Apparently later in life, he used to check into hotels when he was writing and that eventually led to his The Hotel Majestic. Thanks for the info >38 MissWatson:

40MissWatson
Mar 8, 11:22am Top

>39 leslie.98: He must have been what we call a restless soul, always on the move.

And I have finished L'écluse N°1 which was unusual in many ways. Maigret has given notice and plans to quit the police, his wife is off furnishing their new house. And he spends most of his time in the company of a shipping company boss who was assaulted with a knife one night, trying to get to the root of the matter. His inspector drops in from time to time with the rresults of routine inquiries while Maigret plays a cat-and-mouse game with Ducrou who is a selfmade man, rising from a simple barge sailor to owning many ships and quarries. The descriptions of the Seine in Paris made me quite nostalgic.

41LadyoftheLodge
Mar 9, 1:46pm Top

I attended a live performance of Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie. I read the book several times in the past. I have seen both versions of the film, and also a different live performance of this story. The actor who played Poirot in the stage version yesterday portrayed the detective quite well, and had mastered the little mannerisms. The scene changes were accomplished by a revolving stage, and the settings were established through the use of projections. This was quite an enjoyable afternoon at the theater.

42christina_reads
Mar 10, 11:19am Top

I am starting Patricia Wentworth's Grey Mask, published in 1928; it's the first book in her Miss Silver series.

43LadyoftheLodge
Mar 10, 2:07pm Top

I just finished The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie. I am usually pretty good at figuring out the guilty parties by the end of the book, but this one threw me off! I had the motive correct, but not the means or opportunity or the actual perps. No wonder they called her the Queen of Mystery Writers. 5 stars

44DeltaQueen50
Mar 12, 11:40am Top

I have completed Dancers in Mourning, the 9th book in the Albert Campion series by Margery Allingham.

45markon
Mar 12, 3:14pm Top


I listened to my first Ngaio Marsh, The last ditch and enjoyed it.

47LittleTaiko
Mar 14, 5:23pm Top

I read Witness for the Prosecution by Agatha Christie which is really a collection of short stories. Most were good, especially the title story and the one featuring Poirot.

48streamsong
Mar 15, 3:59pm Top

>36 mysterymax: Thank you for the warning!

I've changed my mind - I will read Dorothy Sayers' Whose Body this month and read The Thirty Nine Steps next month for the espionage challenge.

49leslie.98
Mar 15, 4:12pm Top

I have finished The Puzzle of the Silver Persian by Stuart Palmer (1934). Miss Withers was a bit off her usual game but the mystery was very good.

50MissWatson
Mar 16, 1:57pm Top

I am also counting Unnatural death by Dorothy Sayers here, first published in 1927.

51leslie.98
Mar 18, 1:20pm Top

I finished the 2nd Philo Vance mystery The Canary Murder Case (1927). I thought it was better than the first book The Benson Murder Case. I grew up loving the William Powell movie versions of these books so perhaps I am a bit biased in their favor!

52Tafadhali
Mar 19, 2:10pm Top

I'm another one for Unnatural Death!

54thornton37814
Mar 20, 2:34pm Top

I'm listening to Unnatural Death. I usually only listen when I commute, but I will likely make exceptions this time. I'm driving around less because of COVID-19, and just found out today that the person who is manning chat reference for a few hours after the library closes doesn't report to the physical library that day. That means I would drive only 4 days instead of 5--and that's assuming we don't move to working remotely. By the time I get home this afternoon, I'll have less than 2 hours remaining so if I listen an hour on Saturday and an hour on Sunday, I'll finish it over the weekend.

55sallylou61
Edited: Mar 21, 8:20pm Top

I just finished reading The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie, which also qualified for the BingoDOG square published in 1820 or 1920 since it was published in 1920. This was the first Hercule Poirot mystery, and I did not think it was a good as many of the others. I thought that he was being too secretive, and the story dragged. However, I liked the ending. My edition gave 2 versions of chapter 12, "The Last Link," both the one originally published and an earlier, unpublished version.

56leslie.98
Mar 21, 8:21pm Top

I have finished Deadly Nightshade by Elizabeth Daly (1940).

57leslie.98
Mar 22, 5:32pm Top

The first Inspector Lamb book, The Blind Side (1939), was quite good even without Miss Silver!

58clue
Mar 23, 8:59pm Top

I've completed The Norths Meet Murder by Francis and Richard Lockridge. This was a wildly successful novel when it was published in 1940 and became the first in a long series. More important to me than the mystery, although it was fine, was the private and social life of a sophisticated upper class couple living in Greenwich Village between the wars.

59NinieB
Mar 23, 10:15pm Top

>58 clue: I believe that Richard Lockridge wrote short nonmystery sketches about Pam and Jerry in the New Yorker in the 1930s, before he and Frances wrote The Norths Meet Murder. (Please, someone correct me if I'm wrong!)

60clue
Edited: Mar 24, 7:59am Top

>59 NinieB: I just read that yesterday. The history behind this series seems to be a muddle with some accrediting Francis with the idea and some Richard. After her death I have read that Richard said she had nothing to do with it although her name shows as an author on the books published before she died. One way or the other I enjoyed this one regardless of who did what.

61LittleTaiko
Mar 24, 10:22am Top

>58 clue: - That was a fun mystery. I haven't read anything else in the series but probably will someday.

62christina_reads
Mar 24, 10:57am Top

Over the weekend I read Detection Unlimited, Georgette Heyer's final mystery novel (published in 1953, I believe). I always enjoy Heyer, but this wasn't one of her best mysteries. I prefer Envious Casca and Death in the Stocks.

63majkia
Edited: Mar 24, 11:19am Top

I've started Unnatural Death.

64JayneCM
Mar 26, 6:53am Top

Just finished Unnatural Death - my favourite Lord Peter book so far.

65majkia
Mar 26, 7:22am Top

>64 JayneCM: Me too. I don't think I read it before, as nothing felt familiar. Enjoyable as always with DLS.

66sallylou61
Mar 26, 11:22am Top

I just read my second Agatha Christie book this month, Death in the Clouds. Although the death occurred on an airplane flight, the detection occurred on the ground, contrary to its occurring on the train in Murder on the Orient Express

67leslie.98
Mar 26, 11:53am Top

I really need to fit in an Agatha Christie! Right now I am starting Nicholas Blake's The Dreadful Hollow (1953).

68thornton37814
Mar 26, 6:07pm Top

I just finished listening to Unnatural Death. It's also my favorite Lord Peter so far.

69leslie.98
Mar 29, 12:54pm Top

I have started Christianna Brand's 4th Inspector Cockrill book - Death of Jezebel (1949). I have been enjoying reading these GA authors, many of whom I have been neglecting in recent years!

70Dejah_Thoris
Mar 29, 2:09pm Top

Like many others, I reread Unnatural Death by Dorothy L. Sayers (1927) - Miss Climpson is a joy.

I also read Murder in Piccadilly by Charles Kingston (1936), which was re-released as part of Poisoned Pen Press' British Library Crime Classics series. Unfortunately, I can't really recommend it. With the possible exception of one character, I didn't like anyone and truly didn't care what happened.

71thornton37814
Mar 29, 2:18pm Top

>70 Dejah_Thoris: I have Kingston's on my Kindle app, but I don't think I'll get to it this month.

72LibraryCin
Mar 29, 2:45pm Top

The one I was planning to read was ordered via ILL at my library. If the libraries ever reopen and it comes for me, I will report it then.

73leslie.98
Mar 30, 9:00pm Top

Death of Jezebel was excellent - I never came close to figuring it out but all the clues were there. Now I am trying to squeeze in one more GA mystery before the month ends with Crossword Mystery by E.R. Punshon (1934)...

>72 LibraryCin: Do you read ebooks or online at all? Open Library is a free digital library and during this time of social distancing, it has made all its books available with no holds. Maybe it has your book! All you need is an email address to sign up:

http://openlibrary.org

74LibraryCin
Edited: Mar 30, 10:33pm Top

>73 leslie.98: Hey, look at that! It's audio only, though. I have two audios going at the moment, one of them super-long... I'll try to remember to check in when I'm caught up with what I already have.

Thanks for the link!

ETA: As I look closer, the ebook is also available. Thank you!

75leslie.98
Mar 31, 9:43pm Top

>74 LibraryCin: Glad to help!

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