The Ghost Riders of Ordebec by Fred Vargas (tr. by Sian Reynolds)

The Ghost Riders of Ordebec (2013) won the International Dagger Award
The Ghost Riders of Ordebec (2013) won the International Dagger Award

I picked up “The Ghost Riders of Ordebec” after completing the excellent “This Night’s Foul Work.”

It’s the 8th novel in the series and the shared 2013 International Dagger winner.  The series follows Paris cop  from the Pyrenees  Commissionaire Adamsberg.

I enjoyed reading both stories. However, the major difference between the two books is that the villain was easier to spot in “The Ghost Riders of Ordebec.”

The length of the story is about 368 pages and is told in third person omniscient pov. Story moves fast and has a memorable opening with Adamsberg solving a local case involving the suspicious death of an elderly woman. Continue reading

Welsh Series Hinterland to Stream on Netflix in U.S. and Canada

Pic credit Fiction Factory

I remember hearing all the buzz about the new Welsh TV series, Hinterland aka Y Gwyll last year.  English translation for Y Gwyll is “The Dusk.” There was even a hashtag for it on Twitter.  The series promises to follow in the footsteps of The Bridge (mediocre)  and The Killing (Danish series that set the standard). Continue reading

Ten Vintage Crime Fiction Favorites

The Killer Inside Me with Stanley Kubrick quote
The Killer Inside Me with Stanley Kubrick quote

This post was partly inspired by reader Elena, who asked me to do a post on my favorite vintage crime fiction favorites. Initially, I thought I couldn’t possibly put together a list of favorite vintage crime novels based on the thinking that I hadn’t read  very many old school crime fiction stories but yes, I have, enough to do a list of ten and almost all of them have come highly recommended and have stood the test of time very well.

I hope and plan to make a concerted effort to increase my reads of female crime fiction writers this year and also to  highlight them as well at the end of the year, a few of which are on this list, btw.

The list of  books published range from  1929 to 1990. So, I’m using the word vintage loosely here obviously.

One author still eludes me. I still haven’t finished reading a Raymond Chandler novel yet but I promised myself that I’d  read one of his books this year. I think I can manage it this time.

For the curious, the list is after the jump. Please feel free to share your favorites or comment on this list. I’ll be taking notes.  Oh and this list isn’t in any meaningful order.  Continue reading

Why Books in Series Should Standalone or Why I don’t Care to Read In Order

I am a big fan of reading series book out of order.  I’ve been doing it that way for years. In mystery, more than half the books you read will most likely be apart of a series.  The standalone novel seems to be a rare find these days. I actually prefer standalone novels but most of the books that interest me tend to be apart of a long running series.

books and glassesI think if writers are going to pen a bunch of books in a series, readers should be able to start anywhere without having to be forced to start at the beginning. Some series are really long and I don’t always feel like starting at the beginning. And I’m sure there are more readers like me out there that want to read anywhere they please in a series.

There are benefits to making series books standalone. For starters, the author would gain more readers.  Often when I read a rave review of a book online and it’s apart of a series, I am hesitant to buy it. I love reviews that say “You can start with this book” or some variation. Second, those readers that started with the latest book might go back and read the first book. It happens. Continue reading

Translated Crime Fiction: My Top Five

I love reading translated crime fiction.  I was introduced along with the millions of other readers by the late Stieg Larsson. His Millennium Trilogy translated by Reg Keeland has sold a little over 27 million copies and that includes physical as well as ebook. Impressive right?

It was soon after I finished reading Larsson that I discovered Jo Nesbo and that’s when I knew that I wanted to read more. What is the appeal? For starters, we get to travel vicariously through text to many regions of the world. Just to tally all the places I’ve visited so far by book: Norway, Sweden, Laos and France. I’m sure there are more but those are the places that I revisit often. Continue reading

Crime Fiction Reviews