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Tag Archives: mystery

Join the discussion of Louise Penny’s “A Beautiful Mystery”

When the Just Desserts mystery fiction discussion group met on February 27th, 2020, 19 group members discussed the 2012 novel The Beautiful Mystery, the 8th in the “Inspector Gamache” series by Canadian author Louise Penny. Whether or not you attended the actual meeting, you are welcome to share your own thoughts and opinions about The Beautiful Mystery and Louise Penny, in a reply comment to this blog post, below.

For additional reminders about upcoming Just Desserts meetings and/or other announcements of interest to mystery fans, don’t forget to sign up for the Just Desserts e-mail list. Or, if you’re logged into your account on Facebook, you can visit the Events page for the Lincoln City Libraries, and mark whether or not you plan to attend upcoming sessions of Just Desserts – this is a great way for you to help us promote this engaging discussion group! Our selections for future meetings are usually posted there months in advance — currently through our October 2019 meeting.

So…What do you think of Louise Penny, and the Inspector Gamache series, including The Beautiful Mystery?

Join us again on March 26th, 2020 for the next meeting of Just Desserts. The discussion topic for March is the “Risk Agent” series by thriller writer Ridley Pearson. Interested participants are encouraged to read any of the four volumes in that series. For more information, including links to all four titles, visit the Just Desserts portion of the Book Groups page on BookGuide! We hope to see you there!

Reading Recommendations from Just Desserts members – January 2020

At the January 30th, 2020 meeting of the Just Desserts mystery fiction discussion group, following the discussion of the assigned topic of the month (a variety of “Mystery Anthologies and/or Short Story Collections), we held our monthly round robin in which all 13 attendees were able to share recommendations of what other books they’ve been reading recently.

Here’s the list of mystery, thriller and suspense books recommended by Just Desserts members in January 2020:

And here were some non-mystery titles some group members also recommended in January 2020:

What mysteries have you been reading lately that you’d recommend?

Books discussed at the January 2020 Just Desserts “Anthologies” meeting

At the January 30th, 2020 meeting of the Just Desserts mystery fiction discussion group, the assigned reading topic was “Mystery Anthologies and/or Short Story Collections”. Each participating group member was to have read ANY multi-author mystery anthology or single-author mystery short story collection, and everyone was given an opportunity to share their thoughts and opinions on whatever they had read.


Here’s the list of mystery, thriller and suspense anthologies or short story collections discussed by Just Desserts members in January 2020:

  • Murder on the Run (12 stories) by the Adams Round Table
  • Manhattan Mayhem (17 stories all set in Manhattan) edited by Mary Higgins Clark
  • Strange Highways (short story collection all by Dean Koontz)
  • FaceOff (11 stories by pairs of authors, crossing over each of their best-known characters) edited by David Baldacci on behalf of the International Thriller Writers (two members of Just Desserts read this, one in the audiobook format)
  • The Big Book of Female Detectives (approximately 80 stories) edited by Otto Penzler
  • A Study in Sherlock (16 stories) – a Sherlock Holmes collection edited by Laurie King
  • Matchup (11 stories by pairs of authors – one male/one female – crossing over each of their best-known characters) edited by Lee Child on behalf of the International Thriller Writers (three members of Just Desserts all read this one)
  • Midnight Louie’s Pet Detectives (17 stories strongly featuring animals as sleuths or sidekicks) edited by Carole Nelson Douglas

 

Reading Recommendations from Just Desserts members – October 2019

At the October 24th, 2019 meeting of the Just Desserts mystery fiction discussion group, following the discussion of the assigned topic of the month (The “Philip Marlowe” novels by Raymond Chandler), we held our monthly round robin in which all 17 attendees were able to share recommendations of what other books they’ve been reading recently.

Here’s the list of mystery, thriller and suspense books recommended by Just Desserts members in October 2019:

And here were some non-mystery titles some group members also recommended in October 2019:

What mysteries have you been reading lately that you’d recommend?

Just Desserts group discussion of the Philip Marlowe novels by Raymond Chandler

For our final meeting of 2019, in October, the Just Desserts group looked back at one of the most classic American mystery writers of the 20th century — Raymond Chandler, and his series of novels and short stories featuring the sleuth Philip Marlowe.

Though Philip Marlowe first appeared in the 1939 novel The Big Sleep, several earlier stories written by Chandler for the pulps featured characters very much like Marlowe but with other names (like Carmady and John Dalmas). Those stories were retroactively turned into Marlowe stories when they were reprinted in book/collection form and the earlier characters were renamed “Philip Marlowe”.

Marlowe was a wise-cracking, tough-drinking, philosophical, down-on-his-luck gumshoe, the epitome of the “Noir” style of detective, as played by actor Humphrey Bogart in the film version of The Big Sleep. During the period from 1939 to 1958, Chandler finished seven Marlowe novels, and a handful of short stories. Chandler had begun work on the eighth Marlowe novel, Poodle Springs, but had only completed the first four chapters by the time he passed away in 1959. Robert B. Parker (best know for the Spenser for Hire novels) completed Poodle Springs, which eventually was published in 1989. [Note: Parker went on to write an original Marlowe novel, Perchance to Dream — one of several “authorized” books to continue the Marlowe series.]

To find out more about Raymond Chandler (1888-1959) and his Philip Marlowe novels, follow these links:

Philip Marlowe handout for Just Desserts

Philip Marlowe entry on Wikipedia

Raymond Chandler entry on www.fantasticfiction.com, with links to info on the individual books

Wikipedia entry on Raymond Chandler

Hotlink into the Lincoln City Libraries catalog for Raymond Chandler’s Philip Marlowe novels (be aware this also lists Marlowe titles by authors other than Chandler)

(Here are individual links to Chandler’s Marlowe novels and/or story collections in the libraries’ online catalog: The Big Sleep (1939), Farewell My Lovely (1940), The High Window (1942), The Lady in the Lake (1943), Little Sister (1949), The Simple Art of Murder (1950 short stories & essay), Trouble is My Business (1950 short stories), The Long Goodbye (1953), and Playback (1958).)

For additional reminders about upcoming Just Desserts meetings and/or other announcements of interest to mystery fans, don’t forget to sign up for the Just Desserts e-mail list. Or, if you’re logged into your account on Facebook, you can visit the Events page for the Lincoln City Libraries, and mark whether or not you plan to attend upcoming sessions of Just Desserts – this is a great way for you to help us promote this engaging discussion group! Our selections for future meetings are usually posted there months in advance — our early-2020 meetings should be posted shortly.

So…What do you think of Raymond Chandler, and the “Philip Marlowe” series?

Join us again on January 30th, 2020 for the next meeting of Just Desserts. Assigned reading to be announced shortly. We hope to see you there!