This was the last year for playing HB on Goodreads, because I have built, along with some other bookish friends, a new place to play. I will continue to upload my recaps here, though, for posterity!
Spellbound: The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow. I had this placed in A Grimm Tale, but I read a different book that fits that square, so I am shuffling. I really, really liked this book. I am now completely a fan of Alix Harrow, and will preorder everything she publishes forever.
Read by Candlelight or Flashlight: The Last Séance: Tales of the Supernatural by Agatha Christie: I bought this from audible and listened to the first four stories by candlelight. Absolutely perfect for the square.
Vintage Mystery: Finished 9/12. Falling Star by Patricia Moyes; a meh entry in a series I usually like. First person narrator – a pompous ass – and not nearly enough Henry Tibbets. First published 1964.
Noir: The Moving Target by Ross Macdonald. This is the first of MacDonald’s Lew Archer series. Lew Archer is the natural heir to Philip Marlowe, and operates within the same Los Angeles as Marlowe. The plotting in this one had some weaknesses, and the reader is blindsided at the end by a character who behaves entirely out of the character that had been built through the entire novel, but overall, very enjoyable.
Diverse Voices: Devil in a Blue Dress by Walter Mosley. This had been on my TBR for at least a decade, and I really loved it. The inclusion of the black experience in a piece of noir fiction was just incredible.
Amateur Sleuth: The Burning Girls by C.J. Tudor (finished 9/20/2021). This was better than The Family Plot; solid twist that I didn’t see coming.
Film at 11: I’m using double trouble to fill this one with Devil in a Blue Dress by Walter Mosley, because it also fits Amateur Sleuth.
Ghost Stories: Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo: Finished 9/4/2021.
Splatter: The Concrete Blonde by Michael Connelly. Involves a serial killer called the “Follower” who was hiding his murders inside the kills of another serial killer called the Dollmaker. The best of the early Bosch books, this is where Connelly hits his stride.
Romantic suspense: Finished My Brother Michael by Mary Stewart. Set in Greece – likeable main character and gorgeous setting.
Lost in Space: Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman: YA space opera. A solid choice.
A Grimm Tale: The Wide Starlight by Nicole Lesperance. Includes bits and pieces of a number of Norse fairytales; a mixed bag of a book.
Free: I was going to read Relic by Douglas Preston for Relics and Curiosities, but it doesn’t quite fit, so I’ll use it for this square instead.
Trick or Treat: The Box in the Woods by Maureen Johnson
Murder Most Foul: Dark Roads by Chevy Stevens. This one had a plot summary that I really liked, but the book itself didn’t work for me at all. I probably should have DNF’d, but I got to 70% and then I just had too much invested and needed to finish.
Lethal Games: Five Red Fingers by Brian Flynn; horse racing can be MURDER… Finished 9/22
Country House Mystery: Peril at End House by Agatha Christie; Finished 9/3/2021
Relics and Curiosities transfigured to Halloween: Hallowe’en Party by Agatha Christie – a perennial HB favorite for me!
Highway to Hell flipped to Psych: The Family Plot by Megan Collins (finished 9/18/2021): This book was kind of bonkers. Not sure how I feel about it.
Dem Bones: The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman. Delightful murder mystery starring a group of pensioners (the titular Thursday Murder Club) from varying backgrounds. Almost certainly will be a television series/movie some day, starring Dame Helen Mirren as Elizabeth. Involves skeletal remains, so I am using it here.
Dark Academia: A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik; Read 8/27/2021 for bingo headstart. I was initially lukewarm on this book, as it seems to have a long intro before things really get moving. By the end of it, though, I really liked it and will definitely read book 2.
Paint it Black: Finished 9/9/2021. Traitor’s Purse by Margery Allingham. Ugh. I picked the amnesia book. WHYYYYYYY did I pick the amnesia book?
Darkest London: Why Kings Confess by C.S. Harris; when I bailed on Stalking Jack the Ripper, I needed another London book. I’m way behind on this series, this is where I turned. This finishes out the bottom row for me, as well! I am playing my Call Conversion card here as well, converting the 9/24/2021 Gallows Humor call to Darkest London for purposes of my card. Aaaaand, B-I-N-G-O
Southern Gothic: Wildwood Whispers by Willa Reece. Magical realism set on a mountainside in Appalachia.
Fear the Drowning Deep: Finished 9/8/2021; used Amplification Card to fill with The Cutting Season by Attica Locke.