Author Topic: Recommend to me a book about...  (Read 312 times)

Offline MariaE

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Recommend to me a book about...
« on: May 23, 2018, 04:20:57 pm »
I thought a thread where we could ask for specific book recommendations could be fun  :D

E.g. I'm always on the lookout for a good travelogue - have read pretty much everything by Bill Bryson, and also really loved Sarah Outen and Kristine K. Stevens. However, as with all memoirs it's hard to sort the dry from the fascinating, so I'd love to hear some of your favourites!

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Offline GloryAndCrumpets

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2018, 04:35:24 pm »
I loved Whatever You Do, Don't Run. I can't remember the author's name, but he was originally from Australia. When he was around college age, he went backpacking in Botswana, took a temp job at a safari camp, and ended up spending the next two decades as a safari guide. It's a really fun read, extremely funny at parts. Another really fun read (and this one includes recipes!) is The Sweet Life in Paris by David Lebovitz. He was an American chef who packed everything up and moved to Paris. Reading about him getting used to the city and making a life there is both interesting and hilarious.
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Offline MariaE

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2018, 04:41:53 pm »
Those both definitely sound like something Id want to read. Thanks! Ill check them out :)

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2018, 05:59:08 pm »
I haven't read it, but a columnist/author I know published a memoir about hiking with his teenaged son. It's called Father, Son, and the Pennine Way by Mark Richards.

He's in the Bill Bryson sort of wheelhouse, from the snippets I've seen, and is just a super-nice guy.

I need recommendations for cozy-ish mysteries that aren't too twee or gimmicky. I really like classics, but I need to branch out. I love Nicola Upson and Alan Bradley.

I don't care for bumbling protagonists or sentient cats.

Offline GloryAndCrumpets

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2018, 06:03:57 pm »
I haven't read it, but a columnist/author I know published a memoir about hiking with his teenaged son. It's called Father, Son, and the Pennine Way by Mark Richards.

He's in the Bill Bryson sort of wheelhouse, from the snippets I've seen, and is just a super-nice guy.

I need recommendations for cozy-ish mysteries that aren't too twee or gimmicky. I really like classics, but I need to branch out. I love Nicola Upson and Alan Bradley.

I don't care for bumbling protagonists or sentient cats.

I just mentioned this in the "Don't Read That!" thread (as a recommendation, not a hate-read!), but have you read Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz? It's a kind of homage to/pastiche of the classic British mystery. A popular mystery author is murdered, and his editor starts to wonder if clues to his killing can be found in his most recent manuscript...except that manuscript is missing the last chapter, so now there's two murders- one real, one fictional- to solve. I had quite a bit of fun reading it!

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2018, 08:41:11 pm »
My dad just read that and liked it, too I'll put it on the list!

Offline Lynn2000

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2018, 10:48:17 pm »
I have put Magpie Murders on my list. Having enjoyed Agatha Christie, even a couple of her standalone books without the famous crime-solvers, I am cautiously dipping my toe into the world of mysteries. But, I need help. Looking on Amazon, I found the following categories:

1) Alcoholic cop whose child was kidnapped 20 years ago is taunted by a depraved serial killer who has some connection to the kidnapping
2) Psychic geranium helps a cupcake shop owner solve murders in a small seaside town
3) There is a murder to solve, but mostly the chief suspect and the chief authority are really hot and attracted to each other
4) Supernatural, like with vampires

I'm not really interested in any of those. I don't want anything super-dark, or racy, or twee. Also, it does NOT need to totally make sense (Agatha Christie often doesn't).
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Offline GloryAndCrumpets

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2018, 11:35:57 pm »
I have put Magpie Murders on my list. Having enjoyed Agatha Christie, even a couple of her standalone books without the famous crime-solvers, I am cautiously dipping my toe into the world of mysteries. But, I need help. Looking on Amazon, I found the following categories:

1) Alcoholic cop whose child was kidnapped 20 years ago is taunted by a depraved serial killer who has some connection to the kidnapping
2) Psychic geranium helps a cupcake shop owner solve murders in a small seaside town
3) There is a murder to solve, but mostly the chief suspect and the chief authority are really hot and attracted to each other
4) Supernatural, like with vampires

I'm not really interested in any of those. I don't want anything super-dark, or racy, or twee. Also, it does NOT need to totally make sense (Agatha Christie often doesn't).

You might like the Peculiar Crimes Unit series by Christopher Fowler. There's 13 or 14 books now, all about a pair of eccentric British detectives who head up the titular investigative squad. I read one a couple years ago, The Memory of Blood, which I remember quite enjoying- it had a kind of quirky feel to it, without being twee, and the mystery was engrossing, but not super-dark or overly gory. I have a couple more from the series on my shelf that I've been meaning to get to, except they keep getting shuffled around in various moves. 

Dorothy L. Sayers might be up your alley as well. I personally haven't read any of her stuff, but she was writing around the same time as Agatha Christie and from what I understand has a very similar style.

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #8 on: May 23, 2018, 11:55:46 pm »
I know what you mean! Genre mashups are *the* thing, it seems. Straight-up mystery, no chaser, is not always easy to find.

Sayers, much as I love her, can be a bit dense with literary allusions. Her plots are very much in the classic whodunnit style, but her voice strikes some people as affected.

I'd recommend Ngaio Marsh and Margery Allingham as well, if you want to dabble in Golden Age crime.

Robert Barnard came a bit later and is a bit darker without being too twisty/serial-killer-y. Dick Francis sets all his books in and around horse racing, and there's always some adventure and fisticuffs. Not one for deep thought, is our Mr Francis, but he tells a good, fast yarn.

I liked Martha Grimes' earlier stuff, but the later books got a bit too brooding for me.

Do you like historical fiction? There's a whole nother world of hist. mystery.

Offline Queen of the Night

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2018, 11:59:32 pm »
On the topic of travelogues...  have you read the Provence books by Peter Mayle?  Really good.  (I'm a foodie, so food travelogues are much more my speed, lol!) 

On the mystery front...  I love Sayers, also love Marsh, am working on Allingham, and eagerly seeking other Golden Age/Golden Age-style authors, so recommend away!  :)

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guest121

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2018, 12:07:55 am »
On the topic of travelogues...  have you read the Provence books by Peter Mayle?  Really good.  (I'm a foodie, so food travelogues are much more my speed, lol!) 

On the mystery front...  I love Sayers, also love Marsh, am working on Allingham, and eagerly seeking other Golden Age/Golden Age-style authors, so recommend away!  :)

Edmund Crispin is one I like very much.

And Patricia Wentworth is fun, as long as you don't read them one right after the other. The "formula" shows a bit too much if you do that.

Offline MariaE

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #11 on: May 24, 2018, 12:14:57 am »
Cozy mysteries - if you're a knitter I highly recommend "Knit One, Kill Two" by Maggie Sefton. The later books in the series get a bit silly, but the first few were fun!

Also "Murder on Birchardville Hill" by Ruth Buchanan.
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Offline AngelicGamer

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #12 on: May 24, 2018, 12:16:09 am »
For someone wanting straight up mystery no chaser, I quite enjoyed the Women's Murder Club by James Patterson. It is a lot less violent than his Alex Cross series, which I couldn't get through Along Came a Spider, but I've devoured those. I'm on... 9, I think? I need to catch up. I think he's on 15 or 16 now.

Also, cozy mystery: League of Literary Ladies series by Kylie Logan. I found them highly entertaining.



Offline Queen of the Night

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #13 on: May 24, 2018, 12:18:50 am »
Cozy mysteries - if you're a knitter I highly recommend "Knit One, Kill Two" by Maggie Sefton. The later books in the series get a bit silly, but the first few were fun!

Also "Murder on Birchardville Hill" by Ruth Buchanan.

Oooo, yes!  I bought the first one, read it, then ordered the next three from Powell's.  SO good! 

I love how she talks about the colors of the yarn in the shop as a metaphor for bringing joy into her navy-blue-suit life.  :) 

Offline Lynn2000

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Re: Recommend to me a book about...
« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2018, 08:05:10 am »
Thanks so much for all the mystery recommendations! I have added them to my list. "Golden Age" I think is my keyword.