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Sam Sattler

Wow, who knew that Toibin was such an intellectual snob? I think a good bit less of him now, so his snobbery backfired.


Have fun with Inspector Wexford! I am more into Rendell than Vine books so I have read many a Wexford story, but I'm not sure about this one.


I was quite surprised, too. I mean, why would he even care. I do wonder, however, if his comments were taken somewhat out of context, though even on their own the are pretty critical and dismissive. It's fine to like (or not) whatever books you like, but I can't imagine just dissing entire genres!


So far I really like him and look forward to reading more. why did I put off trying Wexford for so long! What other treats am I missing out on!


Like Smithereens, I always preferred the Wexford books to Ruth Rendell's more psychological novels - but then I always tend to prefer police procedurals although whether that is down to my court reporter past or to being the grand daughter of a policeman I really don't know.
I haven't read any of them for years but I always found them to be satisfying reads so I'm sure you will enjoy them.

I'm very fond of Cara Black's Aimee Leduc books - I don't know Paris (other than the Peripherique which I have seen rather too much of at times on journeys to other parts of France) but her books are very atmospheric and Aimee herself is a likeable character. Definitely a series to keep going with if you like to travel with your reading.

Sadly Colm Toibin has blotted his copybook as far as I am concerned with his silly comments - not that he will remotely care!

Kathy Johnson

I've only read one or two Ruth Rendells, but I remember liking them. And definitely going to check out Aimee Leduc.

The July Book Pages was devoted to crime/mystery fiction and I got a number of news books and authors to look for from it--not that I needed any more. Or maybe I do, as I am about to catch up to the end of Louise Penny's Inspector Gamache mysteries (only one left after the one I'm currently reading) and my Patricia Wentworth Miss Silver mysteries.

Toibin sounds like a crankypants snob, and I will continue to both watch TV and read genre fiction as much as I want. So there.


You must have some interesting stories from your days as a court reporter. Do you miss that job? I am finding that I like the Wexford books, so maybe it is a good thing I saved them. I think there are quite a few so I have another series I can dive into. I keep thinking of the Cara Black books. I am tempted to go back and reread the first one, but if I did that for every mystery series I have let languish I would never make progress!! I don't think it will matter to just dive into the next one. I love stories with good settings and how can you miss with something set in Paris?! I was annoyed by that Toibin comment. Was it John Banville (or someone like him) that also made that throwaway comment about genre fiction? I won't give up my mysteries however.


You have lots to choose from with Ruth Rendell--I love the earlier ones especially but she is always good in my opinion. I need to dig out an Aimee Leduc book, too. I bet you can find her easily at used bookstores and I think will see if I find any of her books at the library sale this weekend. I have that BookPages by the way. I seem to lean towards older mysteries more than newer thrillers. Sometimes it feels overwhelming by the choice and often I start them be then feel underwhelmed by the storytelling. I need to pick up another Louise Penny (how often do I say that?). I have only read one of the Gamache books.

Kathy Johnson

I also lean towards the older mysteries. Possibly because those are what I started on as a teenager? They qualify as comfort reads, usually!

I really have enjoyed the Gamache series, and have loved nearly every book. Some were better than others for me, but I've enjoyed the character development of Gamache, his family, the villagers, and his coworkers even more than the actual mysteries.


I think you're right about John Banville - I think that he was having a whinge about how the crime novels he writes as Benjamin Black sell far more copies than his other books. You would have thought he would be grateful!

There are days when I do rather miss my old occupation - I miss being a reporter anyway, being rather inquisitive by nature, but I was a court reporter for almost 20 years and was beginning to see the next generation of the local criminal families coming through who had been toddlers when I first started, so it was probably a good time to go!


I agree. They are very well structured and interesting and I often prefer the setting/time period rather than really contemporary ones. I need to get back to the Gamache books--I only ever hear really good things about them.


He was totally cranky about it, wasn't he! When someone else writes crime fiction it is just genre, but when he does it, it is Literary. As much as I love her work, Kate Atkinson also, if I recall correctly, dismissed mysteries. Why do people need to make such distinctions. Superiority?! It might be a little depressing to see how events just keep repeating themselves when it comes to crime and those who get involved with it. I think seeing the reality of it every day would wear a person down!

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