Reviews

‘This is splendidly written fare from the reliable Poulson, written with keen psychological insight.’ [Invisible]

- CRIMETIME

10 Books that have made me laugh

Today Moira at ClothesinBooks.com and I are posting our list of books that have made us laugh. Mine are, in no particular order: Three Men in a Boat, by Jerome K. Jerome. A classic. I particularly love the part where they try to open a tin of pineapple without a tin-opener, and Uncle Podger hanging a picture, […]

An Officer and a Spy

Robert Harris’s novel, An Officer and a Spy, has won the CWA Ian Fleming Gold Dagger for the best thriller of the year and deservedly so. It is a masterly fictional account of the Dreyfus affair, one of the greatest miscarriages of justice in history. I have been intrigued by it since I came across it […]

This novel made me laugh out loud

Posted on Nov 19, 2014 in J. L. Carr, The Harpole Report | No Comments

‘Mrs Grindle-Jones in a very emotional state this morning. She stormed into my study and clapped down her register, hissing that “Those Widmerpools are away again, every one of them . . . Her eyes were brimming and her neck was a peculiar mottled red. . . At the time I was in the middle […]

Crimewriter Sarah Rayne is my guest

I love a theatrical mystery, so Sarah Rayne’s Ghost Song, set in the vividly realised Tarleton theatre on London’s Bankside, has been on my TBR pile for a while. I’ve just finished it and loved all the details of the old music hall shows, the terrific creepiness of the old theatre at night, and the can’t-stop-reading suspense. Sarah […]

Why writers are becoming extinct

The Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society recently did a survery of writers’ earnings and discovered the median income of British professional writers is now £11,000, down from £15,540 in 2005. I am not surprised by the drop in earnings: writers are earning less per sale than in the past. Amazon slashes prices and this in […]

Known Unto God

Posted on Nov 6, 2014 in Uncategorized | No Comments

The First World War poets – Wilfred Owen in particular  – were still very much read when I was at school. And I must have been in my teens when I read Robert Graves’s Goodbye to All That. Most moving of all was Vera Brittain’s Testament of Youth, which I read in my late twenties […]

How to play crime fiction bingo

Posted on Nov 3, 2014 in crime fiction bingo | 2 Comments

Award yourself a point for each cliché spotted. 1. The protagonist is separated/divorced/widowed/has just emerged from a toxic relationship. 2. Their new love interest turns out to be the villain or winds up dead or possibly both. 3. They had a traumatic childhood (abusive father, alcoholic mother, or whatever). 4. They drink too much (regularly […]