Inspiriert von einer Autorenliste eines Goodreads Freundes werde ich, um mal die Frauen im Literaturbetrieb sichtbar zu machen, eine A-Z Autorinnenliste abarbeiten:
Das Vorhaben, Schriftstellerinnen zu fördern, schwelt schon lange in mir. Ich ärgere mich immer wieder über diese Listen von 10-1000 Büchern, die man gelesen haben muss. Darauf sind so gut wie nie Autorinnen. Auch objektiv stimmt meine Meinung. Eine Journalistin hat mal genau gezählt und die Diskriminierung von Frauen im Literaturbetrieb deutlich sichtbar gemacht. Es wäre genial, wenn auch einige von Euch hier mitmachen und gute weibliche Literatur für jederMann und -Frau aufzeigen. Es wäre auch schön, wenn Ihr meine Challenge hier in Booklikes durch reblogging promotet oder diese Challenge in anderen Kanälen unter Euren Buchfreunden verteilt. Je mehr mitmachen, desto besser. :-)
Wie bin ich bei der Liste vorgegangen? Zuerst ging ich meinen SUB durch, da fand sich einiges - was sage ich, fast alles außer die exotischen Buchstaben - und den Rest recherchierte ich via Google. In einer Stunde hatte ich die fertige Liste.
Das ist nun mein vorläufiger Leseplan, der sich heuer und 2018 nach und nach mit guter Literatur von Autorinnen füllen wird:
A Atwood Margaret
B Bronte Emily, Bachmann Ingeborg, de Beauvoir Simone
C Christie Agatha
D Dusl Anna Maria, Duve Karen
E Enders Giulia, von Ebner Eschbach Marie gegoogelt Eriksson Caroline, Edvardson Cordelia
F Fröhlich Susanne, Faschinger Lilian
G Gerritsen Tess, Gavalda Anna
H Haushofer Marlene, Huvsted Siri
I (alle gegoogelt) Ivy Alexandra, Idstöm Annika, Ingalls Wilder Laura, Ivanauskaite Jurga (relevant)
J Jelinek Elfriede, Juhumpa Lahiri
K Kang Han, Klüger Ruth, Kruse Tatjana, Kneifl Edith
L Leon Donna, Lehner Marie Luise
M du Maurier Daphne, Menasse Eva, Mitchell Margarete
N Neuhaus Nele, Niffenegger Audreey
O gegoogelt O'Brian Kate O'Connor Flannery, Petra Oelker (relevant) Sofi Oksanen (relevant) leonie Ossowski (relevant, Angelika Overrath (relevant)
P Picolt Jodie, Piuk Petra
Q gegoogelt Qunaj Sabrina (nicht relevant Elfenfantasy)
R Ravic-Strubel Antje, Rowling J.K
S Shelly Mary, Schiller B. C, Slaughter Karin
T Tamaro Susanna (nicht relevant Kitsch), Townsend Sue, gegoogelt Tracy P.J (relevant) Truong Monique
U gegoogelt Udizkaja Ludmilla (relevant), Uri Else
V Vospernig Cornelia, gegoogelt Veteranyi Aglaia, Viragh Christina
W WolfChrista gegoogelt Walker Alice , Walters Minette (relevant)
Y gegoogelt Yang GuiYa, Yoshimoto Banana (relevant) Yourcenar Margeruitte
Z Zeh Julie
I'll be tracking my completed books, tasks, and points comprehensively here.
Stack of Books: Books read
Red Bows and Ribbons: Other Tasks completed
Square 1: November 1st: All Saints Day / Día de los Muertos & Calan Gaeaf
Book themes for Día de Muertos and All Saint’s Day: A book that has a primarily black and white cover, or one that has all the colours (ROYGBIV) together on the cover.
Book themes for Calan Gaeaf:
Read any of your planned Halloween Bingo books that you didn’t end up reading after all, involving witches, hags, or various types of witchcraft –OR– read a book with ivy or roses on the cover, or a character’s name/title of book is / has Rose or Ivy in it.
Tasks for Día de Muertos and All Saint’s Day: create a short poem, or an epitaph for your most hated book ever.
Tasks for Calan Gaeaf: If you’re superstition-proof, inscribe your name on a rock, toss it in a fire and take a picture to post –OR– Make a cozy wintertime dish involving leeks (the national plant of Wales) and post the recipe and pictures with your thoughts about how it turned out.
Square 2: November 5th: Guy Fawkes Night & Bon Om Touk
Book themes for Guy Fawkes Night: Any book about the English monarchy (any genre), political treason, political thrillers, or where fire is a major theme, or fire is on the cover.
Book themes for Bon Om Touk: Read a book that takes place on the sea, near the sea, or on a lake or a river, or read a book that has water on the cover.
Tasks for Guy Fawkes Night: Post pictures of past or present bonfires, fireworks (IF THEY’RE LEGAL) or sparklers. Or: Host a traditional English tea party, or make yourself a nice cup of tea and settle down with a good book to read. Which kind of tea is your favorite? Tell us why.
Tasks for Bon Om Touk: Post a picture from your most recent or favorite vacation on the sea (or a lake, river, or any other body of water larger than a puddle), or if you're living on the sea or on a lake or a river, post a picture of your favorite spot on the shore / banks / beach / at the nearest harbour.
=> Norfolk Coast / Rhine Valley at and near Bonn
Square 3: November 11th: St. Martin’s Day & Veterans’ Day / Armistice Day
Book themes for St. Martin’s Day: Read a book set on a vineyard, or in a rural setting, –OR– a story where the MC searches for/gets a new job. –OR– A book with a lantern on the cover, or books set before the age of electricity. –OR– A story dealing with an act of selfless generosity (like St. Martin sharing his cloak with a beggar).
Book themes for Veteran’s Day / Armistice Day: Read a book involving veterans of any war, books about WWI or WWII (fiction or non-fiction). –OR– Read a book with poppies on the cover.
Tasks for St. Martin’s Day: Write a Mother Goose-style rhyme or a limerick; the funnier the better. –OR– Take a picture of the book you’re currently reading, next to a glass of wine, or the drink of your choice, with or without a fire in the background. –OR– Bake a Weckmann; if you’re not a dab hand with yeast baking, make a batch of gingerbread men, or something else that’s typical of this time of the year where you live. Post pics of the results and the recipe if you’d like to share it.
Tasks for Veteran’s Day / Armistice Day: Make, or draw a red poppy and show us a pic of your red poppy or other symbol of remembrance –OR– post a quote or a piece of poetry about the ravages of war.
Square 4: November 22nd and 23rd: Penance Day (22nd) & Thanksgiving (23rd)
Book themes for Penance Day: Read a book that has a monk, nun, pastor / preacher, priest or other representative of the organized church as a protagonist, or where someone is struggling with feelings of guilt or with their conscience (regardless over what).
Book themes for Thanksgiving Day: Books with a theme of coming together to help a community or family in need. –OR– Books with a turkey or pumpkin on the cover.
Tasks for Penance Day: Tell us – what has recently made you stop in your tracks and think? –OR– What was a big turning point in your life? –OR– Penance Day is a holiday of the Protestant church, which dates its origins, in large parts, to Martin Luther, who published his “95 Theses” exactly 500 years ago this year. Compile a catalogue of theses (it needn’t be 95) about book blogging! What suggestions or ideas would you propose to improve the experience of book blogging?
Tasks for Thanksgiving Day: List of 5 things you’re grateful for –OR– a picture of your thanksgiving feast; post your favourite turkey-day recipe. –OR– Be thankful for yourself and treat yourself to a new book - post a picture of it.
Square 5: December 3rd and following 3 Sundays: Advent
Book themes for Advent: Read a book with a wreath or with pines or fir trees on the cover –OR– Read the 4th book from a favorite series, or a book featuring 4 siblings.
Tasks for Advent: Post a pic of your advent calendar. (Festive cat, dog, hamster or other suitable pet background expressly encouraged.)
–OR– “Advent” means “he is coming.” Tell us: What in the immediate or near future are you most looking forward to? (This can be a book release, or a tech gadget, or an event … whatever you next expect to make you really happy.)
Bonus task: make your own advent calendar and post it.
Square 6: December 5th-6th and 8th: Sinterklaas / Krampusnacht (5th) / St. Nicholas Day (6th) & Bodhi Day (8th)
Book themes for Sinterklaas / St. Martin’s Day / Krampusnacht: A story involving children or a young adult book, or a book with oranges on the cover, or whose cover is primarily orange (for the Dutch House of Orange) –OR– with tangerines, walnuts, chocolates, or cookies on the cover.
Book themes for Bodhi Day: Read a book set in Nepal, India or Tibet, –OR– which involves animal rescue. (Buddhism calls for a vegetarian lifestyle.)
Tasks for Sinterklaas / St. Martin’s Day / Krampusnacht: Write a witty or humorous poem to St. Nicholas –OR– If you have kids, leave coins or treats, like tangerines, walnuts, chocolate(s) and cookies in their shoes to find the next morning and then post about their reactions / bewilderment. ;) If you don’t have kids, do the same for another family member / loved one or a friend.
Tasks for Bodhi Day: Perform a random act of kindness. Feed the birds, adopt a pet, hold the door open for someone with a smile, or stop to pet a dog (that you know to be friendly); cull your books and donate them to a charity, etc. (And, in a complete break with the Buddha’s teachings, tell us about it.) –OR– Post a picture of your pet, your garden, or your favourite, most peaceful place in the world.
Square 7: December 10th & 13th: International Human Rights Day (10th) & St. Lucia’s Day (13th)
Book themes for International Human Rights Day: Read a book originally written in another language (i.e., not in English and not in your mother tongue), –OR– a book written by anyone not anglo-saxon, –OR– any story revolving around the rights of others either being defended or abused.
–OR– Read a book set in New York City, or The Netherlands (home of the U.N. and U.N. World Court respectively).
Book themes for Saint Lucia's Day: Read a book set in Scandinavia (Denmark, Norway, Iceland, Sweden and Finland for the purposes of this game) or a book where ice and snow are an important feature.
Tasks for International Human Rights Day: Post a picture of yourself next to a war memorial or other memorial to an event pertaining to Human Rights. (Pictures of just the memorial are ok too.) –OR– Cook a dish from a foreign culture or something involving apples (NYC = Big Apple) or oranges (The Netherlands); post recipe and pics.
Tasks for Saint Lucia's Day: Get your Hygge on -- light a few candles if you’ve got them, pour yourself a glass of wine or hot chocolate/toddy, roast a marshmallow or toast a crumpet, and take a picture of your cosiest reading place.
Bonus task: Make the Danish paper hearts: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jur29ViLEhk
Square 8: December 12th - 24th: Hanukkah (begins 12th, ends 20th) & Las Posadas (begins 16th, ends 24th)
Book themes for Hanukkah: Any book whose main character is Jewish, any story about the Jewish people –OR– where the miracle of light plays a significant part in the stories plot.
Book themes for Las Posadas: Read a book dealing with visits by family or friends, or set in Mexico, –OR– with a poinsettia on the cover. –OR– a story where the main character is stranded without a place to stay, or find themselves in a 'no room at the Inn’ situation.
Tasks for Hanukkah: Light nine candles around the room (SAFELY) and post a picture. –OR– Play the Dreidel game to pick the next book you read.
Assign a book from your TBR to each of the four sides of the dreidel:
Spin a virtual dreidel: http://www.torahtots.com/holidays/chanuka/dreidel.htm
– then tell us which book the dreidel picked.
Make your own dreidel: https://www.activityvillage.co.uk/make-a-dreidel, –OR–
Play the game at home, or play online: http://www.jewfaq.org/dreidel/play.htm and tell us about the experience.–OR– Give some Gelt: Continue a Hanukkah tradition and purchase some chocolate coins, or gelt. Post a picture of your chocolate coins, and then pass them out amongst friends and family!
Tasks for Las Posadas: Which was your favorite / worst / most memorable hotel / inn / vacation home stay ever? Tell us all about it! –OR– If you went caroling as a kid: Which are your best / worst / most unfortettable caroling memories?
Bonus task: Make a piñata (https://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Pi%C3%B1ata), hang it from a tree, post, basketball hoop, clothesline or similarly suitable holder and let your neighborhood kids have a go at breaking it.
Square 9: December 21st: Winter Solstice / Mōdraniht / Yuletide & Yaldā Night
Book themes for Winter Solstice and Yaldā Night: Read a book of poetry, or a book where the events all take place during the course of one night, or where the cover is a night-time scene.
Book themes for Mōdraniht: Read any book where the MC is actively raising young children or teens.
Book themes for Yuletide: Read a book set in the midst of a snowy or icy winter, –OR– set in the Arctic or Antartica.
Tasks for Winter Solstice and Yaldā Night: Read a book in one night - in the S. Hemisphere, read a book in a day. –OR– Grab one of your thickest books off the shelf. Ask a question and then turn to page 40 and read the 9th line of text on that page. Post your results. –OR– Eat a watermelon or pomegranate for good luck and health in the coming year, but post a pic first!.
Bonus task: Read a book in one night.
Tasks for Mōdraniht: Tell us your favourite memory about your mom, grandma, or the woman who had the greatest impact on your childhood. –OR– Post a picture of you and your mom, or if comfortable, you and your kids.
Bonus task: Post 3 things you love about your mother-in-law (if you have one), otherwise your grandma.
Tasks for Yuletide: Make a Yule log cake -- post a pic and the recipe for us to drool over.
Square 10: December 21st: World Peace Day & Pancha Ganapati begins (ends 25th)
Book themes for World Peace Day: Read a book by or about a Nobel Peace Prize winner, or about a protagonist (fictional or nonfictional) who has a reputation as a peacemaker.
Book themes for Pancha Ganapati: Read anything involving a need for forgiveness in the story line; a story about redemption –OR– Read a book whose cover has one of the 5 colors of the holiday: red, blue, green, orange, or yellow –OR– Read a book involving elephants.
Tasks for World Peace Day: Cook something involving olives or olive oil. Share the results and/or recipe with us. –OR– Tell us: If you had wings (like a dove), where would you want to fly?
Tasks for Pancha Ganapati: Post about your 5 favourite books this year and why you appreciated them so much. –OR– Take a shelfie / stack picture of the above-mentioned 5 favorite books. (Feel free to combine these tasks into 1!
Square 11: December 21st-22nd: Soyal (21st) & Dōngzhì Festival (22nd)
Book themes for Soyal: Read a book set in the American Southwest / the Four Corners States (Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah), –OR– a book that has a Native American protagonist.
Book themes for Dōngzhì Festival: Read a book set in China or written by a Chinese author / an author of Chinese origin; or read a book that has a pink or white cover.
Tasks for Soyal: Like many Native American festivities, Soyal involves rituals such as dances. What local / religious / folk traditions or customs exist where you live? Tell us about one of them. (If you can, post pictures for illustration.) –OR– Share a picture you’ve taken of a harvest setting or autumnal leaf color.
Tasks for Dōngzhì Festival: If you like Chinese food, tell us your favorite dish – otherwise, tell us your favorite desert. (Recipes, as always, welcome.)
Square 12: December 23rd Festivus & Saturnalia ends (begins 17th)
Book themes for Festivus: Read anything comedic; a parody, satire, etc. Books with hilariously dysfunctional families (must be funny dysfunctional, not tragic dysfunctional). Anything that makes you laugh (or hope it does).
Book themes for Saturnalia: The god Saturn has a planet named after him; read any work of science fiction that takes place in space. –OR– Read a book celebrating free speech. –OR– A book revolving around a very large party, or ball, or festival, –OR– a book with a mask or masks on the cover. –OR– a story where roles are reversed.
Tasks for Festivus: Post your personal list of 3 Festivus Miracles –OR– post a picture of your Festivus pole (NOTHING pornographic, please!), –OR– Perform the Airing of Grievances: name 5 books you’ve read this year that have disappointed you - tell us in tongue-lashing detail why and how they failed to live up to expectations.
Tasks for Saturnalia: Wear a mask, take a picture and post it. Leave a small gift for someone you know anonymously - a small bit of chocolate or apple, a funny poem or joke. Tell us about it in a post. –OR– Tell us: If you could time-travel back to ancient Rome, where would you want to go and whom (both fictional and / or nonfictional persons) would you like to meet?
Square 13: December 25th Christmas & Hogswatch
Book themes for Christmas: Read a book whose protagonist is called Mary, Joseph (or Jesus, if that’s a commonly used name in your culture) or any variations of those names (e.g., Maria or Pepe).
Book themes for Hogswatch Night: Of course - read Hogfather! Or any Discworld book (or anything by Terry Pratchett)
Tasks for Christmas: Post a picture of your stockings hung from the chimney with care, –OR– a picture of Santa’s ‘treat’ waiting for him. –OR– Share with us your family Christmas traditions involving gift-giving, or Santa’s visit. Did you write letters to Santa as a kid (and if so, did he write back, as J.R.R. Tolkien did “as Santa Claus” to his kids)? If so, what did you wish for? A teddy bear or a doll? Other toys – or practical things? And did Santa always bring what you asked for?
Tasks for Hogswatch Night: Make your favourite sausage dish (if you’re vegan or vegetarian, use your favorite sausage or meat substitute), post and share recipe.
Square 14: December 25th Dies Natalis Solis Invicti & Quaid-e-Azam’s Day
Book themes for Dies Natalis Solis Invicti: Celebrate the sun and read a book that has a beach or seaside setting. –OR– a book set during summertime. –OR– set in the Southern Hemisphere.
Book themes for Quaid-e-Azam: Pakistan became an independent nation when the British Raj ended on August 14, 1947. Read a book set in Pakistan or in any other country that attained sovereign statehood between August 14, 1947 and today (regardless in what part of the world).
Tasks for Dies Natalis Solis Invicti: Find the sunniest spot in your home, that’s warm and comfy and read your book. –OR– Take a picture of your garden, or a local garden/green space in the sun (even if the ground is under snow). If you’re in the Southern Hemisphere, take a picture of your local scenic spot, park, or beach, on a sunny day. –OR– The Romans believed that the sun god rode across the sky in a chariot drawn by fiery steeds. Have you ever been horseback riding, or did you otherwise have significant encounters with horses? As a child, which were your favorite books involving horses?
Tasks for Quaid-e-Azam: Pakistan’s first leader – Muhammad Ali Jinnah – was a man, but both Pakistan and neighboring India were governed by women (Benazir Bhutto and Indira Gandhi respectively) before many of the major Western countries. Tell us: Who are the present-day or historic women that you most respect, and why? (These can be any women of great achievement, not just political leaders.)
Square 15: December 25th-26th: Newtonmas (25th) & St. Stephen's Day / Boxing Day (26th)
Book themes for Newtonmas: Any science book. Any book about alchemy. Any book where science, astronomy, or chemistry play a significant part in the plot. (For members of the Flat Book Society: The “Forensics” November group read counts.)
=> Provisorially: Val McDermid: Forensics
Book themes for Boxing Day/St. Stephen’s Day: Read anything where the main character has servants (paid servants count, NOT unpaid) or is working as a servant him-/ herself.
Tasks for Newtonmas: Take a moment to appreciate gravity and the laws of motion. If there’s snow outside, have a snowball fight with a friend or a member of your family. –OR– Take some time out to enjoy the alchemical goodness of a hot toddy or chocolate or any drink that relies on basic chemistry/alchemy (coffee with cream or sugar / tea with milk or sugar or lemon, etc.). Post a picture of your libations and the recipe if it’s unique and you’re ok with sharing it.
Tasks for St. Stephen’s Day / Boxing Day: Show us your boxes of books! –OR– If you have a cat, post a picture of your cat in a box. (your dog in a box works too, if your dog likes boxes) -- or any pet good-natured enough to pose in a box long enough for you to snap a picture.
BONUS task: box up all the Christmas detritus, decorations, or box up that stuff you’ve been meaning to get rid of, or donate, etc. and take a picture and post it.
Square 16: December 26th-31st: Kwanzaa (begins 26th, ends 31st) & New Year’s Eve / St. Sylvester’s Day
Book themes for Kwanzaa: Read a book written by an author of African descent or a book set in Africa, or whose cover is primarily red, green or black.
Book themes for Hogmanay / New Year’s Eve / Watch Night / St. Sylvester’s Day: a book about starting over, rebuilding, new beginnings, etc. –OR– Read anything set in medieval times. –OR– A book about the papacy –OR– where miracles of any sort are performed (the unexplainable - but good - kind).
Tasks for Kwanzaa: Create a stack of books in the Kwanzaa color scheme using red, black and green and post your creation and post a photo (or post a photo of a shelfie where black, red and green predominate).
BONUS task: Create something with your stack of books: a christmas tree or other easily identifiable object.
Tasks for Hogmanay / New Year’s Eve / Watch Night / St. Sylvester’s Day: Make a batch of shortbread for yourself, family or friends. Post pics and recipe. –OR– Light some sparklers (if legal) and take a picture - or have a friend take a picture of your “writing” in the sky with the sparkler. –OR– Get yourself a steak pie (any veggie/vegan substitutions are fine) and read yourself a story - but take a pic of both before you start, and post it.–OR– make whatever New Year's Eve / Day good luck dish there is in your family or in the area where you live or where you grew up; tell us about it, and if it's not a secret recipe, we hope you'll share it with us.
MASSIVE HUGE BONUS POINTS if you post a picture of yourself walking a pig on a leash. (Done to ensure good fortune of the coming year.)
3. Johannes Vermeer
2 bonus points (Johannes Vermeer)
We love reading lists! They are great to plan your reading ahead, read the books in a series in a right order, and discover new titles. Telling the truth the reading lists make a huge contribution to our growing TBR pile!
Let's have a look at BookLikes reading list option by creating a Thanksgiving themed books reading list! Ready?
Where to find reading lists on BookLikes?
That's easy. When you're logged into your BookLikes click the main menu on the left, hover over Apps and click Reading lists.
Reading Lists Main Page
The main page of the Reading lists is a showroom of the lists created by the community, you can search the list either via the search box on the right (type in a book title, a tag or a list name to find the reading lists) or look through the following sections:
On the right you'll see the lists added by you (you can edit them anytime) as well as the spot to create a new list.
Important: a reading list is always linked to a person who added the list and only the list's creator can edit or delete the list. You can, however, use the comment section to add you own ideas and start a reading list discussion.
Finding Reading Lists
When you click on one of the lists' sectors (the ones we discussed above: new, most liked, created/picked by people you follow) you'll see the view with the additional reading list options.
You can filter the reading list by the category/tag or find the lists added or selected by your friends.
You can also sort them by the list name, add date, number of books, popularity (members signed in) and the number of likes/hearts.
A reading list
When you spot a list that you find interesting, click the list title to view all the book selected for the list.
On the single reading list page you'll find the following information:
You can also:
When you scroll all the way down you'll spot several more options:
How to add a reading list on BookLikes?
To add a new reading list go to the Reading list page and click Create a list on the right.
Fill up the reading list form with the following information:
Along with the books you can also add a short note refering to the given title. It can be a short review, a quote, a sentence of recommendation or simply why you like the title.
You can also change the order of the selected book or remove the title from the list.
When you're done don't forget to click Create list at the top.
If you wish to edit the list in order to change the description, add/remove books, change the private settings, go to your reading list OR go to your list of lists on the main reading page on the right and click Edit.
The reading list view
The reading list main page view
Remember to go back to the top to SAVE all the new edits done to your reading list.
Once the reading list is ready you can share it on your social media channels, you can also send the reading list link to your friends seeking reading inspirations -- the reading list will be visible for non-BookLikes members.
In fact, all reading lists are visible for non-BL members. The reading list main page presents all the lists with the list searching and sorting options on the top of the page.
And don't forget to check the Thanksgiving reading list!
It's HERE (click)
To all US book lovers:
Sigh. How to rate this book? There's a good story stuck in here, both as far as the mystery and the police investigation is concerned and as far as it comes to the back story. Inspector Poole is a likeable enough detective (much more so than his boss, who is decidedly more of the plodding persuation and who, in addition, couldn't give a fig for an accused's / suspect's rights); his investigation is inspired, and he manages to feel true emphathy for everybody involved in the case, from the victim to the witnesses and the suspects ... or so I thought until I reached the final chapters. Moreover, Wade, who had seen WWI battlefield action himself and thereafter entered public service, clearly knew what he was writing about in both areas. In fact, the middle part (which unravels the witness's back story as a sort of story within the story) was what I liked best, and it made me wonder why Wade (apparently) never tried his hand at literary fiction -- like all the leading lights of the Detection Club he was certainly a good enough writer to have been able to pull it off successfully.
But ... but. My enchantment wore off -- not entirely, but enough to take this book down a notch from the 4-star track on which it had been until then -- the further I got into the book's concluding third part. There had been one comment even in Part 2, concerning the supposed inheritability of a proclivity for a "profligate lifestyle" (which Wade, highly educated as he was, ought to have known better than to buy into, and which smacked uncomfortably of the notion of inherited "evil genes" or "criminal genes"), but I decided to let it go, thinking that maybe Wade had resorted to this notion in an attempt -- and probably not even such a misguided one, with a large part of his original audience -- to make the victim appear more sympathetic and her back story even more tragic ... as if the fall from baronet's daughter to prostitute wasn't dramatic enough in and of itself, especially in class-conscious 1930s England.
What began to grind on me after a while in Part 3, though, was that class consciousness also began to play a role in Inspector Poole's thought processes -- and it impacted his investigation, not to mention his acquiescence in his boss's misconduct.
When -- through Poole's own investigation -- suspicion falls on people from the victim's former life among England's nobility, we suddenly witness the inspector ruminating on what a shame it would be if people with that background would actually turn to murder to solve their personal difficulties, and we find him reminding himself with great effort that everybody is equal before the law and the suspects' personal background doesn't constitute grounds per se to exclude them from the investigation on the grounds of noblesse oblige (I didn't count how frequently exactly that expression cropped up in this context, but it certainly felt like a lot).
[Comments on the novel's resolution in both below spoilers; don't open them if you haven't read the book and are still planning to do so.](show spoiler)
And when, in order to clinch the investigation shut, Poole's boss resorts to bullying the suspect who, at the time, has the strongest presumptions against him -- against all rules of proper police conduct and procedure, as both Poole and his senior officer realize perfectly well -- Poole stands by his boss when the issue is brought up before the judge, committing perjury rather than seeing the law that he himself is sworn to uphold actually be enforced, and the illegal interrogation thrown out.(show spoiler)
It can be argued of course (and Martin Edwards does in The Golden Age of Murder and The Story of Classic Crime in 100 Books) that Lonely Magdalen's conclusion is intended to expose police brutality. If so, the attempt is not exactly a rousing success in my book, however, and frankly, I don't actually buy it. Poole himself is too much caught up in the sort of corps spirit that makes his boss's misconduct possible in the first place -- he sweats a bit over his perjury, but he never seriously considers not to back up his boss; this sort of thing is just not done. And Poole is certainly leagues from Agatha Christie's Miss Marple, who would always put the discovery of the real culprit first, no matter who and how well-respected they are (because it just "wouldn't do" to let a murderer go free and see an innocent person hanged in their stead) -- not to mention the likes of Sherlock Holmes and Hercule Poirot (decidedly no respecters of class, either of them) and, by the same token, also the occasionally very class-conscious Lord Peter Wimsey, who likewise, as even his very first investigation makes clear, would rather see a highly respected member of society be convicted of a murder they've actually committed than let an innocent person without the means to afford a proper defense go to the gallows in his stead.
Since it was "only" the ending of the book that was marred in this way (and not everybody seems to be reading it in the same way as I do in the first place), I've decided to only take my rating down to 3 1/2 stars. Still, it's a pity, because there actually is much to both contemplate (in terms of the story) and to enjoy (in terms of the writing) here, and I'd very much hoped for this read to end on a different note.
I read this for both the "Long Arm of the Law" chapter / square of the Detection Club bingo and the Pancha Ganapti square of the 16 Tasks of the Festive Season.
Apologies; this post was intended to go up earlier, but I was stuck in a meeting almost all day long.
Buß- und Bettag was a public holiday in Germany until 1994, and is still a public holiday in Saxony and a school holiday in Bavaria. In Germany and Switzerland, Protestant church bodies of Lutheran, Reformed (Calvinist) and United denominations celebrate a day of repentance and prayer on the penultimate Wednesday before the beginning of the Protestant liturgical year on the first Sunday of Advent (i.e., the Wednesday that falls between November 16 and 22.
The Reading Tasks:
Read a book that has a monk, nun, pastor / preacher, priest or other representative of the organized church as a protagonist, or where someone is struggling with feelings of guilt or with their conscience (regardless over what).
Tell us – what has recently made you stop in your tracks and think? –OR– What was a big turning point in your life? –OR– Penance Day is a holiday of the Protestant church, which dates its origins, in large parts, to Martin Luther, who published his “95 Theses” exactly 500 years ago this year. Compile a catalogue of theses (it needn’t be 95) about book blogging! What suggestions or ideas would you propose to improve the experience of book blogging?
To most of this community, this is going to be carrying turkeys to Plymouth, but just in case ...
Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday celebrated in the United States, Canada, some of the Caribbean islands, and Liberia. It began as a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest and of the preceding year; similarly named festival holidays occur in Germany and Japan, albeit not at the same time. Thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November in the United States and on the second Monday of October in Canada. Although Thanksgiving has historical roots in religious and cultural traditions, it has long been celebrated as a secular holiday as well; in the U.S. the First Thanksgiving is believed to have been held by the Puritan settlers in the early 17th century. Traditions associated with Thanksgiving in North America include family gatherings for a dinner of roasted turkey, potatoes, squash / pumpkins and gravy, as well as spiced pumpkin or apple pie for desert.
The Reading Tasks:
Read a book with a theme of coming together to help a community or family in need. –OR– A book with a turkey or pumpkin on the cover.
List of 5 things you’re grateful for –OR– a picture of your thanksgiving feast; post your favourite turkey-day recipe. –OR– Be thankful for yourself and treat yourself to a new book - post a picture of it.
Bonus task: share your most hilarious turkey-day memory.
Tasks for Hanukkah: Light nine candles around the room (SAFELY) and post a picture. –OR– Play the Dreidel game to pick the next book you read.
Assign a book from your TBR to each of the four sides of the dreidel:
Spin a virtual dreidel: http://www.torahtots.com/holidays/chanuka/dreidel.htm
– then tell us which book the dreidel picked.
OK, here we go:
נ (Nun) = James D. Doss: The Shaman Laughs
ג (Gimel) = Michael Jecks: The Devil's Acolyte
ה (He) = Kazuo Ishiguro: An Artist of the Floating World
ש (Shin) = John-Henri Holmberg (ed.): A Darker Shade
Alright -- Ishiguro it is. And this will also give me my book themes for St. Martin’s Day (square 3): Read a book set on a vineyard, or in a rural setting, –OR– a story where the MC searches for/gets a new job. –OR– A book with a lantern on the cover, or books set before the age of electricity. –OR– A story dealing with an act of selfless generosity (like St. Martin sharing his cloak with a beggar).
Tasks for World Peace Day: Cook something involving olives or olive oil. Share the results and/or recipe with us.
I wasn't in the mood for anything elaborate tonight, but spaghetti and tomato sauce involves a dollop of olive oil in the water in which the spaghetti are boiled, and another dollop of olive oil in the tomato sauce.
Another quick trip down memory lane, courtesy of the BBC's full cast audio adaptation of this novel starring Ian Carmiachel (who also starred in the first of the Beeb's two TV series based on Sayers's novels).
This was Sayers's revenge on the advertising business, based on her own early job experience as an advertising copywriter -- as well as (so her biographers tell us) her revenge on an ex-colleague who tried to blackmail her and who is made to tumble down an iron staircase modelled on the one at their former workplace, ending up dead. -- This is also the one Wimsey book (perhaps with the exception of the very first one, Whose Body?) where Wimsey is, at times, most similar to Bertie Wooster ... except that he's playing a role here, as he has been smuggled into Pym's Publicity for purposes of an undercover investigation into the tumbled-down man's death. What ensues is one of Sayers's wildest rides; a veritable harlequinade that has Wimsey even impersonating himself (or his evil look-alike cousin).
I would have preferred to obtain a reading of Sayers's actual book by Ian Carmichael (he was a brilliant narrator and had played Wimsey so often by the time these audio recordings came around that he had the character down pat and could slip him on and off like a well-worn sweater), but since for this particular book that doesn't seem to be available, I'll happily content myself with this full cast recording.
P.D. James's penultimate Dalgliesh novel, revisited courtesy of the splendid unabridged reading by Michael Jayston (known to fans of John le Carré as Peter Guillam from the adaptation of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy starring Alec Guinness as George Smiley).
I am, bit by bit, working my way through the Dalgliesh series, though not in chronological order but in the order I can get hold of the Michel Jayston CDs. This book is one of my favorite entries in the series, not least because Kate Miskin finally gets to show her mettle when Dalgliesh is temporarily out of commission.
The story takes Dalgliesh and his team to Combe Island on the Cornish coast, a secret retreat for small select groups of government officials and VIPs, to investigate the murder of a an author who is (well, was) as arrogant and egotistical as he was brilliant as a writer -- in other words, your textbook classic mystery murder victim.
As I revisit this series, I am becoming downright nostalgic -- they just don't make 'em like P.D. James and Adam Dalgliesh anymore. Probably Baroness James was wise to bring the series to an end when she did, going out on a high note with The Private Patient (2008), but man ...this is so head and shoulders above the vast majority of mystery writing published these days, it's not even funny.
Since this book fits the theme for Bon Om Touk -- read a book that takes place on the sea, near the sea, or on a lake or a river, or read a book that has water on the cover -- I decided to apply my audio excursion down memory lane to that square.
Tasks for Bodhi Day: Post a picture of your pet, your garden, or your favourite, most peaceful place in the world.
Hello Mom -- why are you sitting at your desk? Can't we please go play?
There are all those treats that are calling for me to hunt them ...
Our garden ... an oasis of peace for (and in) all seasons.
The investigation into the death of a prostitute found strangled in Hampstead Heath -- the eponymous "Magdalen" (though that isn't actually her name). I finished Part 1, the first part of the investigation, this morning and have now started the middle part, which tells the victim's life story from age 14 on and is shaping up as a fairly sizeable tragedy.
I'm glad to see the investigation is in Inspector Poole's hands at last; his boss (Chief Inspector Beldam), who's been in charge so far, just got on my nerves after a while. That said, Wade -- a high-ranking public official with a baronetcy, Eton / Oxford and war service background himself -- clearly knew what he was writing about. (And is the victim's supposed last name, Knox, a friendly co-Detection Club-member jibe at Ronald Knox? The members of the Detection Club were known to do this sort of thing on occasion ...)
High marks to Arcturus Publishing, too, for the splendid cover, which encapsulates the eponymous "Lonely Magdalen" and the novel's general mood to perfection.
I'm reading this for the Long Arm of the Law (Chapter 14) square of the Detection Club bingo and for the Pancha Ganapti square of the 16 Festive Tasks.
Well, I suppose that's what I get for not checking a book's online blurbs before reading it. I downoladed this book purely because it was available on Audible and it was one of Allingham's Campion books that I hadn't read yet. Turns out its plot chiefly rests on not one but two mystery tropes I don't particularly care for: the amnesiac detective and "Fifth Column" shenanigans, Golden Age mystery writer variety.
A few hours before the beginning of this book, Campion -- out on a secret mission whose full details are only known to him and Oates -- has gotten himself coshed on the head. The book opens with him waking up in a hospital not knowing who he is and how he got there. From an overheard conversation he concludes that he has been involved in a violent altercation that ended in the death of a policeman. Within minutes, a young lady named Amanda whom Campion doesn't recognize but who seems to know him very well appears next to his hospital bed and whisks him away in what he discovers is his own car, to the house of an eminent scientists where, it turns out, Amanda and he are staying. Campion also discovers that he seems to be involved in some sort of highly charged top-secret mission. Now, instead of lying low until he has regained his wits and knows precisely who he is, what his role in that ominous mission is, whom he can trust, and what not to do if he doesn't want to give himself away -- and despite the fact that that same evening a death occurs that may well be connected with the ominous mission -- Campion starts running around like a headless chicken trying to bring the whole thing to completion.
Full marks for implausibility so far, Ms. Allingham.
Which brings us to trope no. 2, and which in its details is just about as ridiculously implausible as is the amnesia part of this book's plot. Yet, the saving grace of this second part of the plot is (alas) that in the days of Russian meddling with the American and European democracies' political process via Facebook campaigns, "fake news" and other instances of rumor mongery, the mere concept of an enemy power's meddling with a country's political process(show spoiler)
does unfortunately no longer sound quite as ridiculous as it might have even a few years ago.
Still I really would have wished Allingham hadn't tried to match Christie in the wartime spy shenaningans game -- which was not a particular forte of either of them.
I listened to this book for Square 16 of the 16 Tasks of the Festive Season, Kwanzaa: Read a book written by an author of African descent or a book set in Africa, or whose cover is primarily red, green or black.
Giordano Bruno (1548 – February 17, 1600) was an eminent Italian philosopher, mathematician, poet, and cosmological scientist, whose theories extended the then-novel Copernican model. Bruno proposed that the stars were just distant suns surrounded by their own exoplanets and raised the possibility that these planets could even foster life of their own; and he insisted that the universe is in fact infinite and could have no celestial body at its "center". -- Raised in Naples as a Dominican friar from age 13 onwards, his interest in the writings of Copernicus and Desiderius Erasmus attracted the attention of the Holy Inquisition before he had even turned 30, and rather than become a martyr for the sake of his philosophical and scientific beliefs then and there, he fled from his monastery and from Italy and, having made a name for himself as a scholar in France and attained the patronage of French King Henri III himself, he eventually turned up in Britain in 1583, where he was introduced to Francis Walsingham and agreed to become a spy in Walsingham's network. The Inquisition did eventually catch up with him in 1593, however, and he was tried for heresy and burned at the stake in Rome's Campo de' Fiori in 1600.
While you will be able to glean the above biographical facts (up to 1583) from the beginning of S.J. Parris's Heresy and the book actually has an engaging beginning, it all goes rapidly downhill (or it did for me, anyway) from the moment when the first of several murders occurs. -- Parris's book uses details from Bruno's actual stay in England, in sending him to Oxford for a philosophical debate with the then-Rector of Lincoln College, John Underhill (who indeed opposed Bruno's views). The rest of the story is fictitious, however, and I sincerely hope the personality of this book's Giordano Bruno has nothing whatsoever in common with that of the real-life philosopher and scientist, because if it had, it would be nothing short of a miracle how he ever managed to evade the Inquisition and find his way all the way to France and, later, England.
As for "Bruno the sleuth," leaving aside that initially there isn't even a good reason for him to involve himself in the investigation into the dead man's murder(show spoiler)
the murder and its immediate aftermath are described in such a fashion that anybody who has read Arthur Conan Doyle's(show spoiler)
can't fail to notice one fact pointing very damningly in one particular direction right from the start -- and surely the real-life Giordano Bruno's intellect would have been on par with that of Sherlock Holmes in every respect? And it certainly doesn't get any better by the fact that the one person who thus draws, if not the fictional Bruno's attention, then at least that of this book's reader to themselves in a very conspicious manner, with the same act also eliminates a witness in a manner identical to that used by Ellis Peters in(show spoiler)
... and that in connection with a second murder, a few days later, Parris employs precisely the same slight of hand already used by Agatha Christie in(show spoiler)
So, I found myself looking in one particular direction from page 95 onwards, and though it turned out that I had the dynamics between two of the persons involved the wrong way around, I never wavered in my belief that the solution lay that way -- which makes a 474-page book a mighty slog to finish, particularly if the book's alleged super-sleuth is running around like a headless chicken, missing just about ever vital clue that doesn't actually explode in his face, and standing by passively and helplessly and / or letting himself be tricked, manhandled and otherwise be manipulated in a way I'd possibly have expected from a rookie investigator, but not from a distinguished intellectual like the real life Giordano Bruno, who after all had, himself, demonstrated considerable cunning in evading the persecution of the Holy Inquisition and make his way, undetected, all the way from southern Italy to France and England.
There is one final twist that I didn't see coming exactly this way around (although I should have, and just possibly might if I'd still cared enough to engage with the book at that point), and I'll also have to give Parris credit for an engaging beginning and for her knowledge of the period -- even though I wondered several times how her version of Giordano Bruno, who had never before been to Oxford in his life, could have the city's layout down so pat within a day at most that the book reads as if Parris had had a map of 16th century Oxford sitting next to her manuscript virtually all the time.
Final note to those who don't care for first person present tense narration: There is an excerpt of the series's second book (Prophecy) included at the end of my edition, and while I didn't actually read it, I've seen enough of it to be able to recognize that it's written in that particular narrative voice. (Heresy is not -- it's in first person past tense.)
I read this book for Square 2 of the 16 Tasks of the Festive Season - Guy Fawkes Night: Any book about the English monarchy (any genre), political treason, political thrillers, or where fire is a major theme, or fire is on the cover.
In the Rhine Valley, where I live, November 11 has yet another meaning, in addition to (and even more so than) the two holidays we included in the "16 Festive Tasks":
11/11, 11:11 AM marks the opening of the carnival season, which ends roughly three months later on Ash Wednesday (this season: Feb. 14, 2018), which in turn marks the beginning of the six-week lent period leading up to Easter. While the Thursday and the weekend immediately preceding Ash Wednesday are the high points of the Rhineland carnival celebrations, the opening of what is known hereabouts as "the fifth season" on 11/11 at 11:11 AM is a major first highlight which essentially turns the complete centres of the area's cities -- and none more so than Cologne, the Rhine Valley's "carnival capital" -- into one big party zone, complete with people dressing up, the popular carnival music bands' first big stage appearances of the season, the first appearances of the "carnival princes" (three representatives of the major carnival clubs that preside over the whole season's events), and their honor guards (the members of the carnival clubs, dressed up in uniforms initially created to mock those of the Prussian militia -- e.g., see bottom row of photos from Bonn), etc. To wit (all pictures of today, chiefly taken from the website of our local TV station, WDR):
Bottom row: representatives of the "Bonn City Soldiers"
Addendum: It just occurs to me that this matches the requirements of the Tasks for Soyal: Like many Native American festivities, Soyal involves rituals such as dances. What local / religious / folk traditions or customs exist where you live? Tell us about one of them. (If you can, post pictures for illustration.)
(Hah. Talk about game hosts not knowing their own games ...)
Tasks for Veteran’s Day/Armistice Day: Make, or draw a red poppy and show us a pic of your red poppy or other symbol of remembrance –OR– post a quote or a piece of poetry about the ravages of war.
"A man of importance had been shot at a place I could not pronounce in Swahili or in English, and, because of this shooting, whole countries were at war. It seemed a laborious method of retribution, but that was the way it was being done. ...
A messenger came to the farm with a story to tell. It was not a story that meant much as stories went in those days. It was about how the war progressed in German East Africa and about a tall young man who was killed in it. ... It was an ordinary story, but Kibii and I, who knew him well, thought there was no story like it, or one as sad, and we think so now.
The young man tied his shuka on his shoulder one day and took his shield and his spear and went to war. He thought war was made of spears and shields and courage, and he brought them all.
But they gave him a gun, so he left the spear and the shield behind him and took the courage, and went where they sent him because they said this was his duty and he believed in duty. ...
He took the gun and held it the way they had told him to hold it, and walked where they told him to walk, smiling a little and looking for another man to fight.
He was shot and killed by the other man, who also believed in duty, and he was buried where he fell. It was so simple and so unimportant.
But of course it meant something to Kibii and me, because the tall young man was Kibii's father and my most special friend. Arab Maina died on the field of action in the service of the King. But some said it was because he had forsaken his spear.”
― Beryl Markham,
“The world is full enough of hurts and mischances without wars to multiply them.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien,
In Flanders Fields
“In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn saw sunset glow
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields
Take up our quarrel with the foe;
To you, from falling hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.”
― John McCrae
“War is only a cowardly escape from the problems of peace.”
― Thomas Mann, as quoted in
“There's never been a true war that wasn't fought between two sets of people who were certain they were in the right. The really dangerous people believe they are doing whatever they are doing solely and only because it is without question the right thing to do. And that is what makes them dangerous.”
― Neil Gaiman,
People who prefer to believe the worst of others will breed war and religious persecutions while the world lasts.”
― Dorothy L. Sayers,
St. Martin's Day, also known as the Feast of Saint Martin, Martinstag or Martinmas, is the feast day of Saint Martin of Tours (Martin le Miséricordieux, a Roman soldier turned monk after his baptism), and it is celebrated on November 11. This is the time when autumn wheat seeding was completed, and when historically hiring fairs were held where farm laborers would seek new posts. – The best-known legend associated with his life is that he once cut his cloak in half to share with a beggar during a snowstorm, to save the beggar from dying from the cold. In a dream, St. Martin saw the beggar revealed as Jesus Christ.
St. Martin’s Day processions – which typically end up with a bonfire – are held in the evening, with participating children carrying colorful lanterns (often homemade). The goose became a symbol of St. Martin of Tours, because legend has it that when trying to avoid being ordained bishop he hid in a goose pen, but was betrayed by the cackling of the geese. (St. Martin's feast day falls in November, when geese are ready for killing.) He is also credited with helping spread viticulture in the Touraine region. A pastry associated with St. Martin’s Day in parts of the German-speaking world is the “Weckmann”, a sweet yeast dough figure with raisin eyes clutching a white clay pipe. (Elsewhere, it’s more commonly eaten on St. Nicholas’ Day.)
The Reading Tasks:
Read a book set on a vineyard, or in a rural setting, –OR– a story where the MC searches for/gets a new job. –OR– A book with a lantern on the cover, or books set before the age of electricity. –OR– A story dealing with an act of selfless generosity (like St. Martin sharing his cloak with a beggar).
Other Tasks: Write a Mother Goose-style rhyme or a limerick; the funnier the better. –OR– Take a picture of the book you’re currently reading, next to a glass of wine, or the drink of your choice, with or without a fire in the background. –OR– Bake a Weckmann; if you’re not a dab hand with yeast baking, make a batch of gingerbread men, or something else that’s typical of this time of the year where you live. Post pics of the results and the recipe if you’d like to share it.
Armistice Day is commemorated every year on November 11 to mark the armistice signed between the Allies of World War I and Germany at Compiègne, France, for the cessation of hostilities on the Western Front of WW I, which took effect at 11:00 AM – the "eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month" of 1918. The date was declared a national holiday in many allied nations, and coincides with Remembrance Day in the British Commonwealth and Veterans’ Day in the U.S., both public holidays. The poppy became the international symbol of the day as a result of its being mentioned in the poem In Flanders Fields by Canadian physician Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae, which commemorates the fallen soldiers buried under the Flanders poppy fields.
The Reading Tasks:
Read a book involving veterans of any war, books about WWI or WWII (fiction or non-fiction). –OR– Read a book with poppies on the cover.
Make, or draw a red poppy and show us a pic of your red poppy or other symbol of remembrance –OR– post a quote or a piece of poetry about the ravages of war.