A busy month and an unconscious choice of thrillers for the summer month. Not sure why but a real mix made for some enjoyable reading. Nicola Upson has chosen to have Josephine Tey as the main character in her novels – and I read a second – Two for Sorrow, and found it as enjoyable as the first I had read, An Expert in Murder. The character Tey is a playwright and author as was Tey herself, and has a friend who is an Inspector in the Police – a superb ploy on which to base a series of novels. I shall read more! In fact Upson’s Inspector is a similar character to Tey’s own Inspector Grant who features in To Love and Be Wise, a short but fulfilling read where a Hollywood photographer going missing in the English countryside seems to provide an insoluble riddle. A lovely read!
Then to more gritty titles… I find Harlan Coben’s Myron Bolitar novels a little samey so was delighted to find Just One Look. This is the story of the collapse of a family who, on the surface, appear to have an ideal existence. Grace met her husband when recovering from a major accident at a theatre gig and they now have a good marriage and a good life, which for some reason falls apart the day Grace brings home a pack of photos she’s just had developed and there is an old photo somehow slipped into the family snapshots. Her husband, as a young man, is seen in the photo… This thriller has several grim deaths, a handful of really unpleasant characters and a plot that keeps you enthralled from page 1 but you always want to know why, so you just have to keep reading. Lee Child’s Jack Reacher is another of those iconic characters who, if they were slightly less well adapted would be a complete drop out. But Jack is always in the midst of the action, and always one step ahead of the authorities. Gone Tomorrow is a another super read which starts with a seeming suicide bomber on the subway in NY, and ends in political intrigue.
Also, with much less grit, a great deal of humour and a frisson of sci-fi Jasper Fforde’s The Woman Who Died A Lot is the next Thursday Next novel. I love these, such fun, with all the thriller elements but a wacky world where book characters, golems and werewolves police the literary world, and where big business is run from Swindon! Read the series – they are great!