Happy (almost) Halloween! I have to admit that I enjoy Halloween more as an adult than I did as a kid. It’s not because I get to go out grown-up parties, but I love watching my kids (and husband) have fun with the holiday. My brother-in-law came down for the holiday, as he usually does, and the kids love having Uncle Wayne time.
On November 1st, Lillie is being confirmed! Normally, this would happen on a Sunday, but several things are coming into play to have the ceremony on Tuesday night, which is All Saints Day. As we go to All Saints church, that makes sense. So, this weekend and the beginning of the week will be BUSY!
Lillie and I have been having fun with the YouTube channel. As of this writing, we have 3 videos up and 1 scheduled for tomorrow (10/31) morning where I talk a bit about Hallowe’en Party by Agatha Christie and the upcoming Kenneth Branagh “adaptation.” I will be doing a monthly recap video, but it won’t be out until later this week as the beginning of this week is just crazy. I’m going to share one of my videos below where I talk about my NonFiction November picks.
And now, onto the books!
As usual, I’m linking up with Kathryn at Book Date and her It’s Monday…What Are You Reading? blog hop.
Last week, I finished:
Hallowe’en Party (Hercule Poirot #32) by Agatha Christie
Date finished: October 23, 2022
Rating: ⭐⭐.5 / C+
So, this was perplexing.
The story was not perplexing. The story should have been a bit more perplexing. I figured out the solution almost immediately and spent the rest of the book hoping that I was wrong (I wasn’t). I realize that Christie wrote this book at a time in her life when she was dealing with some cognitive challenges, but it felt as though she had been aware of her situation and decided to play this book safe.
It was perplexing that there is very little Halloween in it. This could be called Christmas Party (or Easter Party…or Birthday Party), and the story would not change. I’ve been reading the short stories in the The Last Seance, so I know that Christie can write creepy, but she doesn’t do so here. In fact, it felt like it took place in the spring, not in the autumn.
While I didn’t get creepy vibes, I was unsettled at points. The victim of this murder is a child, which I have a hard time reading. It makes sense with the story, but that doesn’t make it any more palatable.
So, not a hit for me. But I knew I would read it eventually, so I’m glad I can check it off my Agatha Christie list now.
Fox Creek (Cork O’Connor #18) by William Kent Krueger
Date finished: October 23, 2022
Rating:⭐⭐⭐⭐ / A
I almost can’t believe I have finally caught up with the series and have no more Cork to read (until the next one is published).
In Fox Creek, Cork is tricked into a situation that endangers his entire family. I have to admit, Cork being tricked into anything was a bit hard for me to buy, but that was a minor annoyance. The story is told through several viewpoints–Cork, his wife Rainy, his son Stephen, and a mysterious character named LeLoup (the Wolf). Normally, I would find this to be too many narrators, but it works here. I’m glad that we get more from Rainy, and Stephen is continuing to grow into an interesting character in his own right.
This is a cat-and-mouse-type story with some political intrigue. It could have been hard to follow, but Krueger capably leads the readers through the twists and turns. There were a couple of times where I felt like we had to take a step background and return to the ground we had just covered when the narrator changed, but I also recognize there would have been no way for Krueger to avoid this. All in all, once this story starts going, it keeps up its pace to the very end.
I am sad that I don’t have another Cork O’Connor book to look forward to for a while, but I’m glad that this one was so satisfying. Another win for Krueger and O’Connor!
Point Roberts by Alexander Rigby
Date finished: October 30, 2022
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐ / A
I went into this one with lower expectations for reasons that are, in retrospect, a little silly. I had a hard time finding this book–my library didn’t carry it, and it wasn’t in Kobo’s catalog. I ultimately got it from Powell’s, but I had to order it from them as they don’t carry it on their shelves. I figured a book that hard to find probably wasn’t much, right?
This book was a fun, wild ride. It felt like it was a Netflix show–slightly odd but filled with twists. I don’t think I’ve quite read anything like it before. Point Roberts is a real place (look it up on Wikipedia), and Rigby uses its unique remoteness to his advantage. He fills the town with colorful characters and focuses on five and their quest to find the truth. There are plenty of twists here, enough to keep you going. Some of them are a little silly, but it feels like a Netflix show. That kind of silliness seemed at home in this story.
I had a few issues with this book. There were a few revelations that didn’t go anywhere, and I felt like the end lost some momentum–not so much in what happened, but how it was told. I forgave these missteps as I accepted this book for what it was, but it kept the book from being as good as it could have been.
All in all, though, I’m glad I went through the trouble of finding this book. I would highly encourage you all who want something fun to read to contact your local indies, or head over to Bookshop, to order a copy of this one.
I’m currently reading:
- The Death of Vivek Oji by Akwaeke Emezi
- The Last Seance by Agatha Christie
- The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas