Wednesday, 21 February 2018

JANUARY 2018 - READING LIST AND PICK OF THE MONTH


A cracking start to a new year of reading - 19 books read in the month, though only half of them would weigh in at over 100 pages long.

Nothing sucked  only 1 - 3 STAR read, conversely a lot of them were very good but only 1 - 5 STAR read.

Pick of the month - Lawrence Block's Keller in Des Moines - another episode in my favourite hitman's life and a story with no resolution as such - just an urgent invite to read the longer novel where our tale concludes.

The month could in some ways be regarded as a Lawrence Block tribute month - I read one old lost and recently found book from him - Sinner Man - and seven of his Kindle singles with Keller, a few of which had been enjoyed before as they also form part of the longer work Hitman.

The full list with links...

Paul Heatley - The Boy (2015) (4.5)

Lawrence Block - Keller in Dallas (2009) (4.5)

Christopher Davis - Walking to Babylon (2017) (4)

Lawrence Block - Keller's Adjustment (2005) (4)

William E. WallaceHangman's Dozen (2016) (4.5)

G. B. Williams - Locked Up (2017) (3)

Lawrence Block - Keller on the Spot (1998) (4.5)

Lawrence Block - Keller's Horoscope (2001) (4)

David Putnam - The Innocents (2018) (4.5)

Lawrence Block - Sinner Man (1968/2016) (4.5)

Kevin Berg - Indifference (2016) (4.5)

Joe R. Lansdale - Briar Patch Boogie (2016) (4.5)

Lawrence Block - Keller's Therapy (2013) (4)

Nick Kolakowski - A Brutal Bunch of Heartbroken Saps (2017) (4.5)

Lesley Welsh - In the Blood (2018) (4.5)

Jeffrey Archer - The Man Who Robbed His Own Post Office (2007) (4)

Graham Smith - Past Echoes (2018) (4)

Lawrence Block - Keller in Des Moines (2016) (5)

Lawrence Block - Keller the Dogkiller (2016) (4.5)

Dissecting the month to the nth degree.....

11 x 4.5 STAR READS...... Lawrence Block x 4, Paul Heatley, Nick Kolakowski, Lesley Welsh, Kevin Berg, Joe R. Lansdale, William E. Wallace, David Putnam

6 x 4 STAR READS.....Lawrence Block x 3, Christopher Davis, Graham Smith and Jeffrey Archer.

1 x 3 STAR READ ..... enjoyable, but not without a few niggles - G.B. Williams and Locked Up

19 reads from 12 different authors, 8 from Lawrence Block

7 of the 12 were new-to-me authors....... Kevin Berg, William E. Wallace, Christopher Davis, Lesley Welsh, Nick Kolakowski, G.B. Williams and Jeffrey Archer - though I may have read Archer about 30 years ago.

I have more on the pile from William E. WallaceChristopher Davis and Nick Kolakowski (well I did, but I've since read his second book - Slaughterhouse Blues.)

5 authors have been read and enjoyed before - Lawrence Block and Joe R. Lansdale - numerous times, David Putnam (4), Graham Smith (2), Paul Heatley (3) and

I have more on the TBR pile from all of them.

Gender analysis -  mostly male authors, 2 females - Lesley Welsh and G.B. Williams....... despite assertions that I'm going to correct the imbalance in my reading, I never do.

I believe of the 12 authors I read, 5 are English, and 7 hail from the US.

All 19 of the reads were fiction - 8 novels and 1 collection of short stories, 10 reads were less than 100 pages long

One of the books - Sinner Man - the re-discovered Lawrence Block originated from the 60s, a couple of the reads were penned in the 90s - Block - Keller episodes.

4 reads were from the 2000s, the other 11 from this decade - including three 2018 books and three from 2017.

10 of the 19 books were accessed via a Kindle Unlimited trial, 2 were review copies made available from the publisher - Bloodhound Books, 2 came from the authors, 4 were pre-owned with the last accessed free through iBooks and finished off via Amazon Freebie purchase.




Favourite cover? Sinner Man - Lawrence Block



Second favourite – Nick Kolakowski's A Brutal Bunch of Heartbroken Saps

My reads were this long 85 - 43- 186 - 72 - 155 - 288 - 30 - 47 - 324 - 240 - 308 - 56 - 38 - 134 - 300 - 42 - 348 - 30 -35

Total page count = 2761  (2323 in December)....... a 400 page increase

16 and a half Kindle reads, 1/2 a read on my phone, 1 PDF and 1 trade paperback ARC.

1 < 50,
6 between 51 < 100,
5 between 101 < 200,
2 between 201 < 300,
2 between 301 < 400,
0 > 400 pages

Graham Smith's Past Echoes was the longest read at 348 pages.

A couple of Lawrence Block - Keller's the shortest at 30 pages each - Keller on the Spot and Keller in Des Moines



















4 comments:

  1. I'm glad you had a good reading month, Col. I have to say I'm not surprised that a Lawrence Block story topped your list. He's such a talented writer, isn't he? Glad that you didn't have any that were real disappointments.

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    1. I had a very good month Margot. Block's the best isn't he!

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  2. I like that... a Lawrence Block tribute month. I have got to read more from all of his series, although I have been doing fairly well with two Keller books recently.

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    1. I do think I might devote a month's reading to just one author. There's a few candidates in mind - maybe Lawrence Block, Elmore Leonard or Eric Beetner - they're on the short list!

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