I will not be sad to see the back of 2012, for a number of reasons, including an exciting new repetitive strain injury. That little incident made it impossible to write new fiction wordage for some months. However, my various other medical issues were for once not such as to make it impossible to write, and I have been a lot more active as a writer than I had been for some years. In summary:
The existing fragments of the unfinished Syndicate story self-published on my website.
Short story A sparrow flies through accepted for The Mammoth Book of Erotic Quickies (forthcoming April 2012).
OOP short story And if I offered thee a bargain published by Musa Publishing.
First draft of co-authored novelette Circle of Glass finished.
Short story Naked re-released as a self-published ebook through SmashWords.
Some 15,000 words added to Taxman, the urban fantasy m/m romance novel, taking it to 40 kwords.
25,000 words on a new contemporary romance novel, Nice Tie.
Alas, another highly abbreviated book log. But since the reason for the lack of reviews was that I was busy writing a book of my own at long last, I’m not going to feel too guilty about it.
95) Gladys Mitchell — Come Away, Death
Eighth Mrs Bradley mystery.
96) Agatha Christie — Evil under the sun (audiobook)
Abridged on 3 CDs, and read by David Timson. Ably read by Timson, but I thought the abridgement was rather unsatisfying, as while it had sufficient information to solve the mystery, it didn’t clear up what happened to some of the characters.
97) Mary Stewart — The Gabriel Hounds
Romantic suspense set in the Lebanon, in the usual Mary Stewart style. Enjoyable fun.
And some more minimalist book log, this time for October.
89) Christopher Isherwood — Goodbye to Berlin
90) James Goss — Ghost Train
Re-listen of the Torchwood audiobook, previously reviewed here: http://www.librarything.com/review/72306373
90) Christopher Isherwood — A Single Man
91) Dick Francis — Field of 13
Collection of short stories from the master of race-horsing thrillers.
92) Gladys Mitchell — Death at the opera
Fifth Mrs Bradley mystery, and one of those adapted for the BBC series. Good fun, although be aware that the tv episode made significant changes.
93) Ellis Peters — The Virgin in the Ice (audio book)
BBC Radio 4 full cast dramatisation starring Philip Madoc as Brother Cadfael, in five episodes on two CDs. This is an excellent adaptation of the sixth novel in the Brother Cadfael series, and I think would work well even for those not already familiar with the novel.
94) Agatha Christie– Death by Drowning, & other stories (audio book)
Four short stories taken from the Miss Marple collection The Tuesday Night Club, and read by Joan Hickson on two CDs. The stories in this set are The Herb of Death, The Affair at the Bungalow, The Thumb Mark of St Peter, and Death by Drowning. Four excellent short stories, beautifully read by Hickson. If you’re a fan of Christie, this set and the other two CD sets which together comprise the audiobook of The Tuesday Night Club are well worth getting.
At this point I’m going to abandon any notion of doing a proper book log for the last three months. It’s been long enough since reading some of the books that I couldn’t really do a decent write-up anyway, and at the moment I’d rather focus my writing time on Nice Tie wordage. So it’s going to be mostly a list of books read/listened to. Everything on the list below was at least readable, although I found some more enjoyable than others. Of particular note was the BBC AudioGO full cast dramatisation of Gaudy Night, which I think is a must-have for fans of Lord Peter as played by Ian Carmichael.
Book log September 2012
82) Victor Canning — The Whip Hand
1965 thriller, the first of four featuring private eye Rex Carver. Carver accepts what is presented as a straightforward job of tracing a young woman, and ends up chasing around Europe in a murky plot where he’s working for at least three different masters who may or may not be on different sides, and include at least one official intelligence organisation. Definitely a product of its time, in more ways than one, but good fun and well worth a read.
83) Gladys Mitchell — The Saltmarsh Murders
Mrs Bradley mystery.
84) Mary Stewart — Airs above the ground
85) Margery Allingham — More Work for the Undertaker (audiobook)
Albert Campion novel, abridged on 3 CDs and read by Philip Franks.
86) Alexander McCall Smith — The full cupboard of Life
Fifth in the No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series. As ever, gentle mystery novel about cases that may not be of high drama to the outside world, but matter very much to the people involved.
87) Christopher Isherwood — Mr Norris changes Trains
88) Dorothy L Sayers — Gaudy Night (audiobook)
Full cast dramatisation on 2 Cds by BBC AudioGO, with Ian Carmichael as Lord Peter Wimsey. Superb adaptation of the novel.