OK, I’m obviously the victim of a conspiracy! The TBR has reached a ridiculous new high of 169! Given my iron willpower, I find this incomprehensible – it must be one of you. And if I ever find out which of you it is… well, it won’t be pretty, that’s all!
AND there’s been some shocking news that is going to increase the TBR even more dramatically in the near future…
Bloody Scotland 2016
A few weeks back the organisers of Bloody Scotland (the big Scottish crime fiction festival) asked for volunteers to read and rate the contenders for the Bloody Scotland Crime Book of the Year 2016. The idea is that they’ll have a pool of people who will each be given five books to read and rate on a scale of 1 to 10, then they’ll collate all the ratings to determine which books make the official longlist. I thought that sounded like a brilliant idea to get enthusiastic readers involved at the grassroots while still leaving it to a formal judging panel to make the final decision. So I applied… and have been accepted! The five books should arrive some time in late May, I think, though I don’t yet know whether we’ll be allowed to blog about them before the final decision is made. It should be fun!
Meantime, here are a few of the existing TBR that should make it to the top of the heap soon…
One of my favourite historians writing about one of my favourite queens, and about the period of her reign that I know least about. And I’m lucky enough to have been sent a copy for review by the publishers, Viking Books!
The Blurb says: A groundbreaking reconsideration of our favourite Tudor queen, Elizabeth is an intimate and surprising biography that shows her at the height of her power by the bestselling, Whitbread Award-winning author of My Heart is My Own: The Life of Mary Queen of Scots.
Elizabeth was crowned at twenty-five after a tempestuous childhood as a bastard and an outcast, but it was only when she reached fifty and all hopes of a royal marriage were dashed that she began to wield real power in her own right. For twenty-five years she had struggled to assert her authority over advisers who pressed her to marry and settle the succession; now, she was determined not only to reign but also to rule. In this magisterial biography of England’s most ambitious Tudor queen, John Guy introduces us to a woman who is refreshingly unfamiliar: at once powerful and vulnerable, willful and afraid. In these essential and misunderstood forgotten years, Elizabeth confronts challenges at home and abroad: war against the Catholic powers of France and Spain, revolt in Ireland, an economic crisis that triggered riots in the streets of London, and a conspiracy to place her cousin Mary Queen of Scots on her throne.
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The Blurb says: First published in 1967, Thomas Savage’s western novel about two brothers now includes an afterword by Annie Proulx. Phil and George are brothers, more than partners, joint owners of the biggest ranch in their Montana valley. Phil is the bright one, George the plodder. Phil is tall and angular; George is stocky and silent. Phil is a brilliant chess player, a voracious reader, an eloquent storyteller; George learns slowly, and devotes himself to the business. Phil is a vicious sadist, with a seething contempt for weakness to match his thirst for dominance; George has a gentle, loving soul. They sleep in the room they shared as boys, and so it has been for forty years. When George unexpectedly marries a young widow and brings her to live at the ranch, Phil begins a relentless campaign to destroy his brother’s new wife. But he reckons without an unlikely protector.
From its visceral first paragraph to its devastating twist of an ending, The Power of the Dog will hold you in its grip.
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Courtesy of NetGalley. Chosen because the publisher is Pushkin Vertigo, who seem to specialise in reissues of crime classics, a lot of them translations. I haven’t tried this author before, but have heard good things about him…
The Blurb says: A body is discovered in a Milan apartment, and Inspector De Vincenzi investigates. The apartment happens to belong to an old university friend of his, Aurigi. When the body turns out to be that of Aurigi’s banker, and a phial of prussic acid is discovered in the bathroom, suspicion falls on the apartment’s owner, and De Vincenzi is agonisingly torn between his sense of duty and his loyalty to an old comrade…
This intensely dramatic mystery from the father of the Italian crime novel, Augusto de Angelis, is the first to feature his most famous creation–Inspector De Vincenzi.
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NetGalley again (I’m on a mission to clear up some of my NG backlog). I picked this one after reading Orange Pekoe’s review. She says…
“Oh my, what an adrenalin rush! I never would have imagined detail about gear changes and road surfaces would have me enthralled. The only reason I didn’t read this in one sitting is because I had to take little breaks whenever the tension briefly subsided in order to calm my heart!”
The Blurb says: A young man driving from Sydney to Adelaide for work decides to take a short detour into the desert. He turns his hatchback on to a notoriously dangerous track that bisects uninhabited stone-covered flats. Out there, under the baking sun, people can die within hours. He’s not far along the road when a distraught young woman stumbles from the scrub and flags him down. A journalist from Sydney, she has just escaped the clutches of an inexplicable, terrifying creature. Now this desert-dwelling creature has her jeep. Her axe. And her scent…
From the author of the classic novel Wake In Fright comes a terrifying short novel, a chase into the outback, towards the devil lurking at its center.
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NB All blurbs taken from Goodreads.
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So…what do you think? Do any of these tempt you?