Murder on Astor Place by Victoria Thompson

Murder on Astor Place
(Gaslight Mysteries #1)
by Victoria Thompson

MurderAstorPlace

FirstChapFirstPara

 

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

At first Sarah thought the tinkling of the bell was part of her dream. It sounded so sweet and soothing, and she was following it across a sunlit meadow, as if it were a golden butterfly. But then the pounding started, and she knew this wasn’t a dream at all. Dragging herself away from the meadow and out of the depths of sleep, she forced her reluctant eyelids open. Sure enough, someone was pounding on her office door.

“Hold your horses,” she muttered as she threw off her covers. The night air was chilly for early April, and Sarah recalled the freak storm that had stuck yesterday, dropping several inches of snow on the city. Shivering, she felt around in the dark for her slippers but failed to locate them. Padding barefoot through the darkness toward where she knew the bedroom door to be, she snatched her robe from the foot of the bed and shrugged into it as she went. “Coming!” she called, wondering if whoever was knocking could hear her over the racket he was making.

 

BooksBeat

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of Books and a Beat. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s Books and a Beat or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

 

You’ve wasted a trip and bothered us for nothing, and I must say, I plan to complain to Teddy about this. That’s Police Commissioner Roosevelt to you. His mother is a dear friend of mine, and I used to dandle him on my knee when he was a boy.

 

*****

This is the first book in Victoria Thompson’s Gaslight Mysteries which is now up to number nineteen. I’ve been meaning to try this series for a long time and am so glad I finally got around to beginning it. Have you read any of them?

 

 

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Mystery Characters Quote

FoolHoney

 

 

I woke up on a floor, a cold concrete floor. It was in a windowless room lit by a bulb hanging from a cord in the middle of the ceiling.

My mouth was dry as cotton and my head hurt like hell. I tried to lift it, and the effort left me shaken and nauseated. I satisfied myself with just shifting my eyes around. I thought of all the books I’d read, all the mysteries. Spenser wouldn’t have ended up this way. Neither would Kinsey Millhone. Or Henrie O. Or Stephanie Plum. Well, yeah, maybe Stephanie Plum.

 

A Fool and His Honey (Aurora Teagarden #6) by Charlaine Harris

Traveling with the Dead by Barbara Hambly

Traveling with the Dead
(James Asher #2)
by Barbara Hambly

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FirstChapFirstPara

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

The house was an old one, inconspicuous for its size. Curiously so, thought Lydia Asher, when she stood at last on the front steps, craning her neck to look up at five stories of shut-faced dark façade. More curious still, given the obvious age of the place, was the plain half timbering discernible under centuries of discoloration and soot, the bull’s-eye glass of the unshuttered windows, the depth to which the centers of the stone steps had been worn.

Lydia shivered and pulled closer about her the coat she’d borrowed from her cook–even the plainest from her own collection would have been hopelessly fashionable for these narrow, nameless courts and alleys that clustered behind the waterfront between Blackfriars Bridge and Southwark. He can’t hurt me, she thought, and brought up her hand to her throat. Under the high neck of her plain wool waist she could feel the thick links of half a dozen silver chains against her skin.

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TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

It was one thing to speculate about the physiology of the house’s owner in the safety of her own study at Oxford, or with James close by and armed.

It was evidently quite another to go up and knock on Don Simon Ysidro’s front door.

*****

This supernatural mystery series features humans James and Lydia Asher and ancient vampire Don Simon Ysidro. I’m just beginning Traveling with the Dead, but it looks like this one focuses on espionage. See the post on Those Who Hunt the Night for a list of books in the series and a link to Barbara Hambly’s website.

What are you reading this week?

Dead Man’s Island by Carolyn Hart

Dead Man’s Island
(Henrie O #1)
by Carolyn Hart

DeadmansIsland

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FirstChapFirstPara

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

I don’t consider myself an angel, avenging or otherwise, but I can’t always accept fate as the answer. Timing makes all the difference.

There exists a rather charming school of thought that the motorist who looms out of the fog at precisely the right moment or the fatherly old man who takes a lost child’s hand and leads her to safety are heaven-sent messengers.

Unknown to themselves, of course.

*****

TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

The young woman he recalled was almost lost in the mists of memory, and those partaicular memories I had no intention of resurrecting. The reckless young reporter whom Chase had known so well was now a woman who had spent five decades covering fires, disasters, wars, revolutions, murders, and public scandals.

*****

I read a number of Carolyn Hart’s Death on Demand series years ago, but have only discovered the delightful Henrie O. It looks like there are seven in the series. Have you read any of Hart’s books?

The Heist by Evanovich and Goldberg

The Heist
(O’Hare and Fox #1)
by Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg

Heist

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FirstChapFirstPara

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

Kate O’Hare’s favorite outfit was her blue windbreaker with the letters FBI written in yellow on the back, worn over a basic black T-shirt and matching Kevlar vest. The ensemble went well with everything, particularly when paired with jeans and accessorized with a Glock. Thirty-three-year-old Special Agent O’Hare didn’t like feeling exposed and unarmed, especially on the job. That all but ruled her out for undercover work. Fine by her. She preferred a hard-charging style of law enforcement, which was exactly what she was practicing on that 96 degree winter afternoon in Las Vegas when she marched into the St. Cosmas Medical Center in her favorite outfit with a dozen similarly dressed agents behind her.

*****

TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

There were half a dozen identical Las Vegas Aerial Tours choppers in the airspace above the Strip, and even though only one of them had a man hanging from a landing skid, by the time she got the word out Nick’s helicopter had disappeared. It didn’t help that in all the excitement, she’d failed to notice the chopper’s tail number and had nothing to give to the air traffic controllers so they could track its transponder.

*****

At about a quarter through the book, I am enjoying the first in this series. There’s plenty of Evanovich’s trademark humour and the collaboration seems to be working well. Goldberg has worked on numerous television programs and written series based on Mr. Monk and Diagnosis Murder. This is the first I recall reading by him. Have you read any of his work?

Reading Challenges – 4th Quarter and 2015 Wrap-up

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RMFAO 2015 Classics Challenge

With the top level being Level 5: Professor – 12 or more books, this one was a piece of cake for me and was completed during the second quarter. Extras added this quarter:

30. The Rise of Silas Lapham by William Dean Howells
31. Mont Oriol or A romance of Auvergne by Guy de Maupassant
32. Notre Coeur or A Woman’s Pastime by Guy de Maupassant
33. Evan Harrington by George Meredith
34. The Distracted Preacher by Thomas Hardy
35. The Octopus: A Story of California by Frank Norris
36. Diary of a Pilgrimage by Jerome K. Jerome

RMFAO 2015 Genre Challenge

October – Horror (Level 4: Bibliophile – 4 books)
1. Dead Ever After (Sookie Stackhouse #13) by Charlaine Harris
2. A Touch of Dead (collection of the Sookie short stories) by Charlaine Harris
3. After Dead: What Came Next in the World of Sookie Stackhouse by Charlaine Harris
4. Those Who Hunt the Night (James Asher #1) by Barbara Hambly

November – Historical (Level 1: Casual Reader – 1 book)
1. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

December – Adventure/Fantasy (Level 2: Frequent Reader – 2 books)
1. The Martian by Andy Weir
2. Shackleton’s Forgotten Men by Leonard Bickel

A success with at least one book for each genre. February – Crime/Mystery, with eight books read was my biggest month, followed by May – Classics/Literary with seven books.

RMFAO 2015 Series Challenge

The same as Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015 below with the addition of:

AMELIA PEABODY series by Elizabeth Peters
18. Tomb of the Golden Bird

A miserable fail! Out of five series I had planned to finish, I only finished one (the Stephanie Plum series shown below).

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Yvonne2015

What An Animal Reading Challenge VIII 2015

Level 2 – Read 7-12

7. Dead Ever After (Sookie Stackhouse #13) by Charlaine Harris
8. The Elegance of the Hedgehog (L’elegance du herisson) by Muriel Barbery
9. Tomb of the Golden Bird (Amelia Peabody #18) by Elizabeth Peters
10. A Bone to Pick (Aurora Teagarden #2) by Charlaine Harris
11. The Octopus: A Story of California by Frank Norris

Completed. Luckily for me, the qualification rules are very broad.

Cruisin’ Thru the Cozies Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Sleuth Extraordinaire – Read 20 or more

17. Death of a Liar (Hamish Macbeth #31) by M. C. Beaton
18. Notorious Nineteen (Stephanie Plum #19) by Janet Evanovich
19. Takedown Twenty (Stephanie Plum #20) by Janet Evanovich
20. Top Secret Twenty-One (Stephanie Plum #21) by Janet Evanovich
21. Tomb of the Golden Bird (Amelia Peabody #18) by Elizabeth Peters
22. A Bone to Pick (Aurora Teagarden #2) by Charlaine Harris

Successfully completed and loads of fun doing it!

Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Expert series reader – Complete 4 or more series. A massive failure. It seemed so doable in January, yet I only managed to complete one series. There were seven unread books on the list (eight counting the extra series for the RMFAO Challenge). I blame my failure on getting hooked on Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse series and reading nine of them in 2015. They weren’t on the list – but it was worth it as I really enjoyed the series.

Books read this quarter and the only series completed this year:

STEPHANIE PLUM series by Janet Evanovich
19. Notorious Nineteen
20. Takedown Twenty
21. Top Secret Twenty-One

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Riedel2015Mystery

My Kind Of Mystery 2015

February 1, 2015 – January 31, 2016

Level 5: Invisible Floor 41 or more:

33. Roadkill by Kinky Friedman
34. Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris
35. Death of a Liar by M. C. Beaton
36. Notorious Nineteen by Janet Evanovich
37. Those Who Hunt the Night by Barbara Hambly
38. Takedown Twenty by Janet Evanovich
39. Top Secret Twenty-One by Janet Evanovich
40. Tomb of the Golden Bird by Elizabeth Peters
41. A Bone to Pick by Charlaine Harris

Since this is not a calendar year Challenge, there is still one month to go. But it is already completed, so – success!

*****

GoodReads2015

My 2015 Goodreads Challenge was 100 books. Success! Completed on the last day of the year.

Special Collection: The Works of Patricia Wentworth (1878-1961)

How wonderful! I read a couple Miss Silver novels years and years ago and quite enjoyed them. Thanks for bringing all these to our attention, Laura.

Pleasure of Reading

Dora Amy Elles (November 10, 1878 – January 28, 1961) wrote under the pen name of Patricia Wentworth. She was a British crime writer, best known for her Miss Silver Mysteries, though she also wrote romantic novels. Miss Silver is frequently compared to Agatha Christie’s Jane Marple, though Patricia Wentworth’s first Miss Silver novel pre-dated Agatha Christie’s first Miss Marple novel by two years, and may well have inspired Agatha Christie.

Unmarked works which are hyperlinked are available on Faded Page.

Works marked with a * are currently under development at Distributed Proofreaders Canada and will be made available over the next few months.

Works marked with a † are available on the Project Gutenberg US site.

Miss Silver Novels

  1. Grey Mask (1928)
  2. The Case is Closed (1937)
  3. Lonesome Road (1939)
  4. Danger Point (1941) aka In the Balance
  5. The Chinese Shawl (1943)
  6. Miss Silver Intervenes (1943) aka Miss…

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2016 Reading Challenges – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book

Two Reading Challenges which will be new for me in 2016 are hosted at Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book.

I am making it easy on myself and keeping track at Goodreads.

 

2016 Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge

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I’ve spotted this one on several blogs this year and it always looked like fun, so I’m in for 2016! Track my progress at Goodreads.

The Alphabet Soup Challenge means that by December 31, 2016, your bowls must be full of one book for each letter of the Alphabet. Each letter counts as one spoonful.

 

Craving For Cozies Challenge 2016

I’m already reading plenty of mysteries, including cozies, and participating in challenges for them, so why not one more! Here’s the special shelf at Goodreads.

I’ll be shooting for Satisfied: 21 – 40 Cozy Mysteries

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If either of these appeal to you, join me in giving them a try! Just click on the Challenge title for details and the sign up page at Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book.

2016 Reading Challenges – Socrates’ Book Reviews

I plan to participate in both the Reading Challenges hosted by Yvonne at Socrates’ Book Reviews!

My progress will be recorded at Goodreads (so easy and simple). You can find out more information about each individual Challenge at the link provided and sign up there or at Goodreads. Just click on the title below.

Cruisin’ Thru The Cozies 2016

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It’s Level 4 – Sleuth Extraordinaire – Read 21 or more books for me again this year! Piece of cake, love the fun Cozies.

 

What an Animal IX 2016

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I don’t read a lot of books featuring animals, but the guidelines are very broad. Level 2 – Read 7-12 worked for me in 2015, so I will go for that level again in 2016.

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If either of these peak your interest, visit Yvonne’s blog and join us there or at Goodreads.

Photo of Howard Carter in Egypt

CarterMenaHouseHotel

I am currently reading Tomb of the Golden Bird (Amelia Peabody #18) by Elizabeth Peters. It is set in 1922 at the time of the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun in the Valley of the Kings. Howard Carter, his sponsor Lord Carnarvon and Lady Evelyn (Carnarvon’s daughter) are featured characters.

When I saw the above photo tweeted by Tess Baber and retweeted by Dr. Zahi Hawass, I could not resist featuring it myself. Thank you to Tess Baber for bringing it my attention. Her description: “Howard Carter (1874-1939) in the back of a motorcar at the Mena House Hotel with Great Pyramid in background Egypt.”

It is a running joke in the series that Amelia resists the use of motorcars, even though her husband Emerson has one and tries to convince her otherwise.