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review
OutsmartYourShelf
The Murder on the Links | Agatha Christie
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Mehso-so

Hercule Poirot receives a letter begging him to travel to Merlinville-sur-Mer immediately. The writer of the letter, millionaire Monsieur Renauld, is worried about something that he doesn't do more than allude to & Poirot's curiosity is piqued. When Poirot & Hastings arrive at the Renaulds' estate, they are shocked to hear that their mysterious letter writer was murdered the night before. (continued)

OutsmartYourShelf Renauld was found in a hastily dug grave on a nearby golf course, The Links, whilst his wife had been bound & gagged in her room. It seems the couple were the victims of a botched break-in & robbery, but Poirot is not convinced.

I have a mix of emotions about this one. The mystery itself was good, well thought out & intriguing, but Hastings ruined it. I seriously wanted to throttle him - I don't know how Poirot kept his cool.
(edited) 3mo
OutsmartYourShelf Heaven knows what Christie thought she was doing writing this character as such a silly man & my dislike of him here brings this book down to a 3⭐

To read my Hastings rant: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/5070336354
Read: 25th-27th Jan 2024

#ReadAway2024 #WinterClearDown #BacklistReadathon #SeriesLove2024 #192025 (1923)

@Andrew65 @DieAReader @GHABI4ROSES
@clwojick @thearomaofbooks @puddlejumper
@TheSpineView @Librarybelle
3mo
Librarybelle Hastings can be too much sometimes, for sure! Great review! 3mo
See All 6 Comments
TheAromaofBooks Oh what a fun cover for this one!! 3mo
TheSpineView Well done 3mo
DieAReader 🥳Great! 3mo
36 likes6 comments
blurb
OutsmartYourShelf
Untitled | Anonymous
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Completed the full board for #WinterClearDown with a few days to spare!
Thanks to @puddlejumper for hosting.

PuddleJumper Amazing! Well done! 3mo
BookmarkTavern Nice! 🎉 3mo
23 likes2 comments
review
OutsmartYourShelf
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Panpan

Hungary in 1929 saw the exposure of over a hundred deaths which were linked to a small group of people in a village called Nagyrev. For over a decade, Auntie Suzie, the local midwife, had helped local women get rid of inconvenient relatives by means of poison. They came to be known as The Angel Makers.

Given the source material this should have been an interesting read, but it turned out to be a chore to get through.

OutsmartYourShelf I struggled with the author's writing style I think, especially the way they seemed to be obsessed with conveying that Suzie was fat. Countless uses of “waddled“, “plopped“, “heavily“ etc - it was just relentless & not needed. I think she was compared to a cow at one point! Suzie committed some terrible acts, which should be the focus, so being told just once that she was overweight would have been enough & I think it detracted from the book. 2⭐ (edited) 3mo
Librarybelle That‘s a shame! 3mo
jlhammar I didn‘t really get on with her writing style either. Still a pick for me, but I didn‘t like it nearly as much as I expected to and it took me ages to get through (kept setting it aside). The story is fascinating, but it was missing that narrative drive for me. 3mo
DieAReader 👋🏻👋🏻👋🏻Bye! Bye! 3mo
32 likes5 comments
review
OutsmartYourShelf
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Pickpick

One early morning sees Dolly Bantry wake up to find the dead body of a young woman in their library. Neither Dolly nor husband, the Colonel, have seen her before but it's not long before the local gossip starts up. Dolly knows this could end up ostracising them from the village so she reaches out to long-time friend, Jane Marple, for help & her enquiries see them head off to the Majestic hotel for a short stay. (Continued)

OutsmartYourShelf When another body is found in the charred remains of a car in an abandoned quarry, Miss Marple realises she is dealing with a well-planned murder.

I was a bit disappointed with the first book in this series but this one was much better. The characters are not quite so dreary & the plot clips along at a fair rate. I remembered quite a bit of this one from the 1980s TV series but it was still a great read.
3mo
OutsmartYourShelf Miss Marple came across rather well & it's clear that she is nobody's fool. Obviously there are one or two places where attitudes have changed such as the disapproval for an unmarried couple living together, a situation which wouldn't turn a hair nowadays. Overall though I really enjoyed reading this one. 5🌟

Full review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/4882843898
Read 13th-14th Jan 2023
3mo
See All 8 Comments
TheSpineView Sounds good. Great review 👏 3mo
TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!!! 3mo
Librarybelle Oh! Good choice!! 3mo
DieAReader 🥳Great! 3mo
PuddleJumper 🎉🎉 3mo
35 likes8 comments
review
OutsmartYourShelf
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Pickpick

Although a great deal of the original contemporary documents & files have now been lost, those that remain are here examined to see what they tell us about the thoughts of those investigating the crimes at the time. It follows the murders chronologically with a great deal of cross-referencing to provide an objective look at the killings. This is not a seamless narrative of the crime that reads like a novel. (continued)

OutsmartYourShelf This is a meticulous examination of the remaining physical evidence (letters, reports, interview transcripts etc) of the crimes of Jack the Ripper. There's a lot of additional information about the people named & events that occurred on the periphery of the murders contained in the references & I spent a lot of time flipping back & forth between the main book & the reference section.
4mo
OutsmartYourShelf It's definitely given me a lot to think about. This is definitely more of an academic style read & can be a little tough-going at times, but I found it worth persevering.
5🌟

Full review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1377863926
Read 4th-7th Jan 2024

#ReadAway2024 #WinterClearDown #192025Challenge (1998)
@Andrew65 @DieAReader @GHABI4ROSES
@Librarybelle @Puddlejumper
(edited) 4mo
Librarybelle Sounds very interesting! 4mo
Andrew65 Sounds an interesting read, if we only knew what did happen. 3mo
DieAReader 🥳Awesome! 3mo
26 likes5 comments
review
OutsmartYourShelf
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Pickpick

The first book to feature Hercule Poirot is told from the point of view of Arthur Hastings, a soldier on leave from the Front in WWI. Hastings visits an old friend, John Cavendish who lives at Styles Court owned by his stepmother, Emily Inglethorp. John's wife, his younger brother, Lawrence, & a family friend, Cynthia Murdoch also live there, along with Emily's new husband, younger man, Alfred Inglethorp. (continued)

OutsmartYourShelf When Emily suddenly dies & the local doctor is certain that it is murder, Hastings is relieved to run into Hercule Poirot, a former detective in the Belgian police force who is now a refugee living near Styles Court & whose benefactor was the same Emily Inglethorp. Poirot agrees to investigate Emily's murder & uncovers a family full of secrets, resentment, & greed. 4mo
OutsmartYourShelf I've seen the TV adaptations of the books starring David Suchet but I really couldn't remember this one. It's incredibly well thought out & kept me guessing - I only hope the rest of the books follow suit. 4🌟

TWs: antisemitism, racism.

Full review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/4915426668
Read 3rd-4th Jan 2024

#ReadAway2024 #BacklistReadathon #SeriesLove2024 #192025 (1920)
#WinterCosy #WinterClearDown
(edited) 4mo
See All 8 Comments
DieAReader 🥳🥳🥳 4mo
Librarybelle Good choice for the #192025 challenge! 4mo
TheSpineView Great job!🌞 4mo
TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!!! 4mo
Andrew65 The start of a great series, although dated now with some views expressed or words used. 4mo
35 likes8 comments
review
Andrew65
Christmas at the Cat Caf | Jessica Redland
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Pickpick

Having discovered Jessica Redland last Christmas and enjoyed her books since, I was keen to jump into this book about Tabby setting up a Cat Cafe, which seems a novel concept. Unfortunately just before opening her partner deserts her and if that isn‘t enough she also is suffering from the debilitating condition of fibromyalgia. There also seem to be people around her that want to stop the cafe opening.

Andrew65 I loved this book as much as her previous books and do enjoy the writing style of her books, and the romance style of them. I do feel it‘s good that people write about people suffering with medical conditions, and I learned a lot about fibromyalgia in this book which will make me understand it better, but I can see how this might put some people off who read books for escapism. 4mo
Andrew65 However I have to say I felt this was written very well into the book, and only added to the reading experience and the story for me.

I felt the story was very well written, and in particular the slow burn of the developing relationship in Tabby‘s life, and found myself rooting for them. I loved the main characters and was very glad to spend some of the Christmas season with them.
4mo
Andrew65 I‘m not particularly a cat person, but despite that I did love the story and the unique cat part of it, although I‘m sure I wouldn‘t spend the extra money to go to a cat cafe. Just a word of warning if anyone is a cat lover there is one part of the story that could be upsetting. However, even that I feel was very well written in the story.

4mo
See All 6 Comments
Andrew65 Overall if you enjoy these romance style of books I would definitely recommend this book, and gave it five stars. There isn‘t one book by Jessica Redland that I haven‘t enjoyed very much, and look forward to reading more books by her.

I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
4mo
BookmarkTavern Lovely! 💖💖 4mo
76 likes6 comments
blurb
kwmg40
Bingo! | Rosemary Wells
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Here's how I did with #wintercosy, #wintercleardown, #longdarknights and #brightcolddays bingo cards in the month of December! #wintergames #snowangels

I still have January to work on finishing #wintercleardown but I thought I'd post my progress.

Thanks to @Emilymdxn and @Puddlejumper for hosting these challenges!

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OutsmartYourShelf
Wintergames | Litsy Litsy
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PuddleJumper Nicely done! 4mo
14 likes1 comment
review
Bookwormjillk
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Pickpick

I used to get this book out from the library, but this year it seemed like it had been lost or culled. So I bought myself a copy as a present. It‘s such a great book to dip in and out of on those weird days around Christmas and New Years. And I‘m happy to have my own copy that I can highlight and fall asleep with.

47 likes2 stack adds10 comments