Balancing the Books – July 2022

Here’s what arrived to filled a few gaps (there were no gaps) on the bookshelves this month.
Here’s what I read:

  1. Under the Marsh by G R Halliday.
  2. Confidence by Denise Mina. Both of these were sent for review by Vintage.
  3. The Seat of the Scornful by John Dickson Carr.
  4. Crook O’Lune by E C R Lorac. Both of these were sent for review by the British Library.
  5. It Was Always You by Emma Cooper, sent for review by Headline.
  6. The Bone Road by N E Solomons, sent for review by Polygon.
  7. A Woman’s World by Marina Amaral and Dan Jones, sent for review by Love Reading.
  8. My Lord John by Georgette Heyer.
  9. A Shilling for Candles by Josephine Tey.
  10. Family Matters by Anthony Rolls. These three were charity shop finds.
  11. Fault Lines by Emily Itami, sent with my NB subscription.
  12. Bullet Train by Kotaro Isaka.
  13. First Person Singular by Haruki Murakami.
  14. The Memory Police by Yoko Ogawa. These three were sent for review by Vintage.
  15. The Way It Is Now by Garry Disher, sent for review by Viper.
  16. The Girls Who Disappeared by Clare Douglas. sent for review by Michael Joseph.
  17. The Short Straw by Holly Seddon.
  18. The Ugly Truth by L C North.
  19. Hide and Seek by Andrea Mara.
  20. The Other Half by Charlotte Vassell.
  21. Meantime by Frankie Boyle.
  22. Coq au Vin by Charlotte Carter.
  23. The Three Dahlias by Katy Watson.
  24. In the Blink of an Eye by Jo Callahan.
  25. Daisy Darker by Alice Feeney.
  26. The Toll House by Carly Reagon.
  27. The Last Party by Clare Mackintosh.
  28. The Bleeding by Joanna Gustawsson. These were all gifts or giveaways from Harrogate.
  29. The Kind Worth Killing by Peter Swanson.
  30. Mother’s Day by Abigail Burdess.
  31. The Close by Jane Casey.
  32. My Darling Daughter by J P Delaney. These were in a book bag bought from the Harrogate festival.
  33. The Chance by Kirsten Miller, sent for review by HQ
  34. Keep Her Safe by Jen Faulkner, sent for review by Jen.
  35.  The Pre-Loved Club by Sue Teddern, sent for review by Mantle.
  36. Demon Copperhead by Barbara Kingsolver, sent for review by Faber.
  37. Fear of the Phantom Special by Edward Marston.
  38. Timetable of Death by Edward Marston. Both of these were charity shop finds together with a Folio Society copy of The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie. That doesn’t count as an incoming though as I already have a different copy of that book. (Yes, I have found a way around my own rules).

I also gave away two books. So that’s 38 in and 7 out. No way to disguise that imbalance. But I’ve managed to read some of them already, which is very unlike me. I say this every month but I’ve a feeling August will be quieter. I hope you enjoyed whatever you read in July and that August’s reading contains a possible new favourite read.

  1. The Edinburgh Mystery and other tales edited by Martin Edwards.
  2. A Woman’s World by Marina Amaral and Dan Jones.
  3. More Than You’ll Ever Know by Katie Gutierrez.
  4. The Way It Is Now by Garry Disher
  5. First Person Singular by Haruki Murakami.

So we are already past the half way point of the year but we have reached the month that seems to last for six months, at least in this house it does. That’s right, it’s the school holidays. Last month saw me attend the Theakston’s Crime Writing Festival at Harrogate. The event ran from Thursday 21 July to Sunday 24th July. I attended on Friday and Saturday. I met up with fellow bloggers, reviewers, Twitter friends and authors and had a fabulous time. I was lucky enough to be invited to brunch with Transworld, where I met Andrea Mara and Sarah Pearse. I didn’t manage to talk to Tess Gerritsen, Lesley Kara or Lauren North though, but hopefully next time. I was also invited for lunch with Faber to meet their lead debut author Charlotte Vassell. We discovered a love of similar books, and a passion for Persuasion. Her novel, The Other Half, is published in January. After lunch I went for drinks with Orion to celebrate their 30th birthday and 30 years of Michael Connelly books. I met Michael as well as reviewers and authors including Adam Simcox, Rob Parker and Oscar de Muriel. Finally I had dinner with the lovely people at Baskerville and authors Peter Hanington and Mick Herron and debut authors Rose Wilding and Natalie Marlow. (Keep a look out for A Curse Place by Peter Hanington out in January. Natalie’s debut Needless Street, a 1930s noir about a Birmingham PI also out in January and Speak of the Devil by Rose out in June. All I know about her book is that it opens with a severed head and a group of women surrounding it). I managed to make it to three panels. On Friday I saw John Sutherland, Paul Finch and Adam Simcox talk about what they did before they became writers. On Saturday I saw M W Craven and Brian McGilloway talk about their books before seeing Chortling Experts, where Dame Sue Black, Carla Valentine, Emma Kavanagh and Graham Bartlett,  authors who also happen to have careers in areas that focus heavily in crime novels, discussed how authors get those topics wrong. As you can imagine, I may have come back with a couple of new books…

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