New Release in Spain: Muerte y un poco de amor by Alexandra Marinina

Muerte y un poco de amor - Alexandra Marinina249 I’ve just read on Cruces de Cables and Detectives Literarios that Muerte y un poco de amor (Death and a Bit of Love) by Alexandra Marinina will be released in May 2010. I don’t know if any of her books are available in English. As far as I know her previous books in Spanish are difficult to obtain. Therefore I’m glad that we will have this new book in our bookshops soon.

For more information visit:

Alexandra Marinina in Wikipedia (English) and Mis Detectives Favoritos (Spanish)

Ediciones Pamies (Spanish, you can read the first chapter)

Muerte y un poco de amor by Alexandra Marinina (Spanish)

2010 Global Reading Challenge – Progress Update

global I’m aiming for the expert’s level. This requires me to read two novels from each of these continents in the course of 2010: Africa, Asia, Australasia, Europe, North America (incl Central America), South America plus two novels set in Antarctica. From fourteen different countries or states.

I’ve restricted myself to crime fiction books only from completely new to me authors. In addition to that after completing a first round from each continent, except Antarctica, I have choose to read female writers only.

So far I have read 12 novels:

1) Michael Stanley – A Carrion Death (Botswana) January 11.
2) Margie Orford – Like Clockwork (South Africa) April, 29.

3) Mehmet Murat Somer – The Gigolo Murder (Turkey) February 15.
4) Natsuo Kirino – Out (Japan) Currently April 21.

5) Peter Temple – Dead Point (Australia) January 29.
6) Vanda Symon – Overkill (New Zealand) April 3.

7) Alicia Gimenez Bartlett – Death Rites (Spain) January 3.
8) Karin Fossum – Don’t Look Back (Norway) March 8.

North America:
9) Leonardo Padura – Havana Gold (Cuba) February 9.
10) Laura Lippman – What the Dead Know (USA) March 18.

South America:
11) Santiago Roncagliolo – Red April (Peru) January 18.
12) Claudia Piñeiro – Thursday Night Widows (Argentina) March 23.

Plus two novels set in Antarctica
13) Bob Reiss – Purgatory Road TBR .
14) Sarah Andrews – In Cold Pursuit TBR.

Like Clockwork by Margie Orford

First Published in 2006 by Oshun Books. Published in the United Kingdom in 2009 by Atlantic. 314 pages. Hardback ISBN: 978 1 84887 086 4.

Like Clockwork is Margie Orford’s first novel featuring award winning journalist Dr. Clare Hart. She is currently working in a new project about the trafficking of women through Africa. She also works part-time as a profiler for the police.

After an introduction the story opens when the first body of a girl is found and we know for sure that we will be facing a serial killer. Her throat has been precisely and meticulously severed and her body arranged in public. It just happens that Dr. Hart lives nearby and she is asked for help. Clare calls Inspector Riedwaan Faizal and asks him to come over to see the body, something doesn’t seem straight forward. But she doesn’t wait for his arrival. Clare and Riedwaan have an on and off relationship. The case also throws up memories of her twin sister’s rape.

Superintendent Phiri cast some doubts before handing the case to Inspector Riedwaan, due to his record of insubordination, alcohol and violence, but he is given a second chance. Phiri is more reluctant to let Clare on Riedwaan’s team since she is considered a loner and somebody difficult to work with, but he will give her a last chance too.

Then two additional bodies are found and a race against time starts when a fourth girl is gone missing. Is Dr. Clare Hart project somehow connected with these crimes?

Although quite readable I found, occasionally, that there are certain aspects of the plot which are very difficult to believe. Overall there is a certain lack of verisimilitude in the story that gets close to the absurd at certain stages. In general the book remains very much in the surface of the problem and lacks a more in depth analysis.

This is a contribution to 2010 Global Reading Challenge

For more information visit:
Margie Orford official web
International Noir Fiction

Weekly Geeks 14: Reading Globally

Weekly Geeks I’ve come across Weekly Geeks thanks to fellow bloggers Kerrie at Mysteries in Paradise, Bernadette at Reactions to Reading and Craig at Crime Watch. And I cannot resist the temptation to participate in this week’s challenge about global reading. The task, if you want to participate, is to answer as many or as few of the following questions:


Do you deliberately read globally, and if so, do you track your reading in this area?

I do read globally although I don’t use to keep track of my readings in this area, but it sounds as a good idea.

Have you joined any reading challenges which encourage reading from around the world? If so, what are they?

I’m participating this year in two reading challenges, the 2010 Global Reading Challenge hosted by Dorte at DJs Krimiblog and the Scandinavian Reading Challenge 2010 hosted by Amy at The Black Sheep Dances. In both cases I’ve restricted myself to my favourite genre crime and mystery fiction, but that is not required. There is more information about these challenges on both links and I would like to encourage everybody to participate, there is still plenty of time before the year end.

Do you visit bloggers who blog outside of your country? If so, what have you learned from reading their blogs? Consider sharing a couple of links to book bloggers who motivate you to read around the world.


Besides the ones already mentioned I visit regularly the following blogs: Maxine at Petrona, Peter at Detectives Beyond Borders, Glenn at International Noir Fiction, Uriah at Crime Scraps, Rob at The View from the Blue House, Donna at Big Beat from Badsville, Margot at Confessions of a Mystery Novelist…, Martin at Do You Write Under Your Own Name?, Elizabeth at Mystery Writing is Murder, Karen at Euro Crime, Mack at Mack Captures Crime….

There are also two very interesting blogs written by crime fiction writers from different parts of the world: Murder is Everywhere and International Crime Writers.

I’ve learned a lot about my favourite genre, its history, main titles, classic authors, sub-genres, new books, …..etc. And I’ve found people with a similar taste in different parts of the world who have something to say and like to share their views with all of us.

Where do your reading around the globe book suggestions come from? Magazines? Web sites which feature books in translation? Publishers? Other bloggers? If you have a particularly great site for recommendations, give us a link!

I’m most grateful to all the suggestions coming from the blogs mentioned above, particularly to Maxine, Dorte, Glenn, Karen, Uriah (aka Norman), Peter, Rob, Bernadette, Kerrie and Craig (New Zealand).

There are some interesting sites as well like: Crime Beat (South Africa), Mis detectives favoritos (In Spanish), Scandinavian Crime Fiction in English, Scandinavian Crime Fiction, Fantastic Fiction, Crime Squad, Bitter Lemon Press ….

Do you read books in translation as part of your global reading experiences? Share some of your favourite books in translation.

I prefer to mention authors rather than a particular book. Among my favourites I can mention Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö, Henning Mankell, Jo Nesbø, Arnaldur Indriðason, Fred Vargas and Andrea Camilleri. In my TBR list you can find Asa Larsson, Deon Meyer, Petros Markaris, Håkan Nesser Karin Alvtegen and Dominique Manotti. I would also like to suggest some Spanish writers like Manuel Vazquez Montalban, Alicia Gimenez Bartlett and Eugenio Fuentes. And last but not least Leonardo Padura (Cuba).

Is there a particular country, or countries, which you would like to learn more about? Why?

I wish more (all) countries can provide as much information like, for instance, the Nordic or Scandinavian Writers as in the two sites mentioned above: Scandinavian Crime Fiction in English and Scandinavian Crime Fiction.

>Scandinavian Reading Challenge – Update


th_scandinaviamap-1 I’ve finally make up my mind, but I’ve failed to choose one book/author for each Scandinavian country. And the reason is that I’ve remember two new to me authors that I was very eager to read since quite some time ago. I’m also very grateful for all the recommendations I’ve received which will be included in my wish list.

Therefore to participate in the 2010 Scandinavian Reading Challenge I’m plannig to read:

  • The Fire Engine That Disappeared by Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö. Read
  • Sun Storm (aka The Savage Altar) by Asa Larsson. TBR.
  • Silence of the Grave by Arnaldur Indriðason. TBR.
  • Nemesis by Jo Nesbø. TBR.
  • The Mind’s Eye by Håkan Nesser. TBR.
  • Missing by Karin Alvtegen. TBR.

Four of my favourite writers: Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö, Jo Nesbø and Arnaldur Indriðason. And three new to me: Asa Larsson, Håkan Nesser and Karin Alvtegen.

Thank you Amy for having set this one up.

To join this Challenge you can find more information here.

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