Loreak, 2014 (Flowers) directed by Jon Garaño and Jose Mari Goenaga

The Spanish Film Academy announced today that the Spanish film in Basque language Loreak, directed by Jon Garaño and Jose Mari Goenaga, has been selected as the Spanish entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 88th Academy Awards.

Synopsis: Ane’s life takes a turn when a bouquet of flowers is delivered to her house every week, always anonymously. Lourdes and Tere’s lives are also affected by some mysterious flowers. A stranger leaves a weekly bouquet in memory of someone important in their lives. Loreak (Flowers) is the story of three women, three lives altered by the mere presence of flowers. (Source: Film Factory)

See film review at The Hollywood Reporter

Translating Hard-Boiled Slang: Raymond Chandler’s The Long Good Bye in Spanish by Daniel Linder

I’m much obliged to Dr Daniel Linder for sending me a copy of his paper ‘Translating Hard-Boiled Slang: Raymond Chandler’s The Long Good Bye in Spanish’. The first time he got in touch with me was after my blog post regarding his doctoral thesis Las traducciones de Chandler al español (Chandler translations into Spanish). If you’re interested in this subject you can find him here. Dr Daniel Linder is a Faculty Member at the University of Salamanca Faculty of Translation and Documentation. To him Detective fiction offers an interesting area for studying this because of the proliferation of non-standard varieties of slang used.’ In his conclusions he states ‘that the version of El largo adiós (The Long Good Bye) that is most widely read and available today in Spanish is a plagiarized version of a translation that is now more than 40 years old.’ I can assure you that ‘Translating Hard-Boiled Slang: Raymond Chandler’s The Long Good Bye in Spanish’ is a fascinating read. Thank you very much Dr Linder for having contacted once again with me.

The Fall (2013 – ) TV Series Season 1 And 2

Northern Ireland (RTÉ One) –  United Kingdom (BBC Two) TV series / Format: Season 1: 5 x 60′ or 3 x 90′ HD; Season 2: 6 x 60′ or 3 x 90′ HD / A Fables Limited Production in association with Artists Studio for BBC. Made on location in Northern Ireland with the partial assistance of the European Regional Development Fund through the Northern Ireland Screen Commission Created and written by: Allan Cubitt Producers: Gub Neal, Julian Stevens Directed by: Jakob Verbruggen, Allan Cubitt Cast: Gillian Anderson, Jamie Dornan, Laura Donnelly, Bronagh Waugh, Niamh McGrady, Michael McElhatton, Ben Peel, Frank McCusker, John Lynch, Ian McElhinney, Archie Panjabi, Stuart Graham, Aisling Franciosi, Valene Kane, Emmett J. Scanlan, Bronágh Taggart, Karen Hassan, Jonjo O’Neill, Nick Lee, Colin Morgan, Brian Milligan, Séainín Brennan, Sean McGinley Premiered in the Republic of Ireland at 9.30pm on 12 May 2013, and in the UK on BBC Two at 9pm on 13 May 2013 In Spain the series premiered the 13 February 2014 entitled La Caza on the TV channel AXN.

81b3h1RCeaL._SL1500_The Fall is the first investigative series toplining Gillian Anderson since her career-making turn as Agent Scully in The X Files. The Emmy, Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild award winner brings to her role the same intelligence and depth of character that won her millions of fans across the globe. The miniseries follows the lives of two hunters: high-powered Detective Superintendent Stella Gibson (Gillian Anderson) and serial killer Paul Spector (Jamie Dornan), who preys randomly on people in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Brought in as an outsider to run the team, Stella feels a certain hostility, but she knows the psychology of serial killers – and where to look for them. (Source: ZDF Enterprises)71gvG0fnOyL._SL1116_

The Fall isn’t a whodunit but a will-they-stop him?, since the killer is known to the audience from the start, and the drama gains in intensity through the cat-and-mouse game. The case is explored in all its complexity, and shows how a modern, top-level murder investigation team works when it comes up against every policeman’s worst nightmare.  (Source: ZDF Enterprises)

DVD available at Amazon

Over the last two weeks, Begoña and I have watched all the episodes of The Fall (Season 1 and 2) 660 minutes, and I loved it. A great show which I strongly recommend.

For additional information read: Wikipedia

Agatha Christie on her 125th Anniversary

Last September 15 marked the 125th anniversary of Agatha Christie’s birth. On this occasion, over the last two weeks, there have been many blog entries celebrating this event. I would like to bring up here those ones that have caught my attention:   

Xavier Lechard writes in his blog At The Villa Rose A Neanderthalian view of Christie. I very much agree with Xavier, but the funny thing is that I’m enjoying very much the Quirke book series by Benjamin Black, though I don’t share his views on Christie novels.

Curtis J. Evans at The Passing Tramp collects and summarises several lists: Favorite Agatha Christie Novels and Some More Favorite Christie Lists, together with some other entries.

Moira Redmond on Clothes in Books has posted various entries: Agatha Christie Week: Her Life, Agatha Christie Week: A Sharp, Brittle Book, Agatha Christie Week: Surfing, an early adopter, Dress Down Sunday: Agatha Christie Week, Agatha Christie Week: Round the World in Fact and Fiction and Agatha Christie Week: An Author of Influence…

NacyO writes in the crime segments: I couldn’t let the day end without remembering Agatha Christie

Keishon in her blog Yet Another Crime Fiction Blog In Remembrance: Agatha Christie

Last but not least, Kerrie Smith hosts an essential blog for all Agatha Christie aficionados the Agatha Christie Reading Challenge Carnival. If you visit her site for the first time, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed. 

For my part, I reviewed The Secret Adversary by Agatha Christie and wrote in A Crimes Is Afoot #HappyBirthdayAgatha

And, to conclude, you can find below the list of Christie’s novels I’m planning to read, without a date of completion, with the idea of coming up with my own list of favourites. If you think I’m neglecting any other essential novel, I’ll be most grateful for your suggestion in comments.

  • The Murder of Roger Akcroyd (1926, Poirot)
  • The Murder at the Vicarage (1930, Marple)
  • Peril at End House (1932, Poirot)
  • Murder on the Orient Express (1934, Poirot)
  • The ABC Murders (1936, Poirot)
  • Death on the Nile (1937, Poirot)
  • And Then There Were None (1939)
  • Sad Cypress (1940, Poirot)
  • One, Two, Buckle My Shoe (1940, Poirot)
  • Evil under the Sun (1941, Poirot)
  • Five Little Pigs (1942, Poirot)
  • The Hollow (1946, Poirot)
  • A Murder Is Announced (1950, Marple)
  • 4.50 from Paddington (1957, Marple)
  • The Pale Horse (1961)
  • Endless Night (1967)
  • Curtain (1975, Poirot)
  • Sleeping Murder (1976, Marple)

Review: The Secret Adversary by Agatha Christie

Esta entrada es bilingüe, para ver la versión en castellano desplazarse hacia abajo

Project Gutenberg, 2008 [EBook #1155]. Last updated: January 29, 2013. Format: Kindle Edition. File Size: 378 KB. Print Length: 229 pages.


In a preface that takes place on May 7th, 1915, the Lusitania, after being struck by two torpedoes, is sinking rapidly. Aboard, an unknown man hands over a package with a secret document, to a young woman instructing her to deliver such document by hand to the American Ambassador. Four years later, Tuppence Cowley bumps into her old friend Tommy Beresford at Dover Street tube station. The Great War has just finished, jobs are in short supply and both are unemployed. During their conversation, Tuppence comes up with the idea of starting their own company, The Young Adventurers Ltd., ‘Willing to do anything. Go anywhere… No unreasonable offer refused’. After they said goodbye, a man  addresses Tuppence. He claims he could not help overhearing their conversation, he introduces himself as Mr Whittington and, if she accepts to go and visit him at his office tomorrow morning, he will be in position to provide her with the details of a job offer. At the agreed place and time, Tuppence finds out  that the job entails going to France and to stay there for three months in a residence for young ladies, though she can’t understand why someone is willing to pay her for doing that. However, when Mr Whittington becomes interested in knowing her name, she replies, Jane Finn, a name she overheard the previous day, and Mr Whittington gets very angry. He wants to know ‘How much does she know? And how much does she want?’ Tuppence manages to sort out a situation she doesn’t fully understand and leaves, though not before getting fifty pounds from Mr Whittington. When discussing the incident with Tommy, they both decide to find out where and who is Jane Finn. And Tuppence moves from being a blackmailer to becoming a secret agent together with Tommy, although they must be very careful with a mysterious figure known only as Mr Brown. 

I downloaded The Secret Adversary on my Kindle, to celebrate the 125th anniversary of Agatha Christie. This book is in the public domain and can be downloaded from various sites. The Secret Adversary is the second work published by Agatha Christie after The Mysterious Affair at Styles and, like the latter, it first appeared as a series of seventeen episodes in The Times weekly edition during August – December, 1921, and was published in book form in 1922. In this novel, Agatha Christie introduces the readers to the adventurous pair Tommy and Tuppence.  Besides The Secret Adversary, both will appear in three other novels ( N or M?, 1941, By the Pricking of My Thumbs, 1968, and Postern of Fate, 1973) and in a collection of short stories, Partners in Crime (1929), originally published between 1923 and 1924. Postern of Fate was the last novel Christie ever wrote, although it was not the last to be published.

In fact, the story is, perhaps, somewhat naive and childish under today’s perspective. On a separate issue, it’s more a mystery book than a detective novel. Anyhow it’s a wonderful read and has some memorable moments that are quite humorous and extremely witty. I realised, after having read it, that I had probably read this book as a young boy, but I only remember the title in Spanish. It is worth noting that Tommy and Tuppence are a couple of characters more complex than Miss Marple and Poirot that, in a certain sense are much more simple and overly stereotyped. Besides, over the years, Tommy and Tuppence grow old, what is not the case in the novels of Miss Marple and Poirot.

My rating: B (I really liked it)

The Secret Adversary has been reviewed at BooksPlease (Margaret), In Search of the Classic Mystery Novel (Puzzle Doctor), Mysteries in Paradise (Kerrie), Clothes in Books (Moira), The Passing Tramp, and at Reviewing the evidence (Abbey Hamilton).

Agatha Christie Official Home 

Notes On The Secret Adversary

The illustration above belongs to the the first UK edition

El misterioso Sr. Brown de Agatha Christie


En un prefacio que tiene lugar el 7 de mayo de 1915, el Lusitania, tras ser alcanzado por dos torpedos, se está hundiendo rápidamente. A bordo, un hombre desconocido, entrega un paquete con un documento secreto, a una mujer joven dándole instrucciones de entregar dicho documento en mano al embajador estadounidense. Cuatro años más tarde, Tuppence Cowley tropieza con su viejo amigo Tommy Beresford en la estación de metro de Dover Street. La Gran Guerra acaba de terminar, los empleos son escasos y ambos están en el paro. Durante su conversación, a Tuppence se le ocurre la idea de comenzar su propia compañía, “The Young Aventurers Ltd.”, “dispuestos a hacer cualquier cosa. Ir a cualquier parte … Ninguna oferta razonable será rechazada.” Después de despedirse, un hombre se dirige a Tuppence. Afirma que no pudo evitar escuchar su conversación, se presenta como el señor Whittington y, si ella acepta ir a visitarlo en su oficina mañana por la mañana, estará en condiciones de proporcionarle los detalles de una oferta de trabajo. En el lugar y hora acordados, Tuppence se entera de que el trabajo implica ir a Francia y permanecer allí durante tres meses en una residencia para señoritas, aunque ella no puede entender por qué alguien está dispuesto a pagarle por hacer eso. Sin embargo, cuando el señor Whittington se interesa en conocer su nombre, ella responde: Jane Finn, un nombre que escuchó el día anterior, y el señor Whittington se enoja mucho. Quiere saber “¿Cuánto sabe? ¿Y cuánto dinero quiere?” Tuppence se las arregla para resolver una situación que no entiende completamente y se marcha, no sin antes conseguir cincuenta libras del Sr. Whittington. Al discutir el incidente con Tommy, ambos deciden averiguar dónde está y quién es Jane Finn. Y Tuppence pasa de ser una chantajista a convertirse en un agente secreto, junto con Tommy, aunque deben tener mucho cuidado con un misterioso personaje conocido únicamente como señor Brown.

Descargué El misterioso Sr. Brown en mi Kindle, para celebrar el 125 aniversario de Agatha Christie. Este libro es de dominio público y se puede descargar de varios sitios. El misterioso Sr. Brown es el segundo trabajo publicado por Agatha Christie después de El misterioso caso de Styles y, al igual que esta última, que apareció por primera vez como una serie de diecisiete episodios en la edición semanal veces durante agosto-diciembre, 1921, y fue publicado en forma de libro en 1922. en esta novela, Agatha Christie presenta a los lectores a la pareja aventurera Tommy y Tuppence. Además deEl misterioso Sr. Brown, ambos aparecerán en otras tres novelas (El misterio de Sans Souci de 1941, El cuadro de 1968, y La puerta del destino de 1973) y en una colección de relatos cortos, Matrimonio de sabuesos (1929), publicados originalmente entre 1923 y 1924. La puerta del destino fue la última novela que escribió Agatha Christie, aunque no fue la última que se publicó.

De hecho, la historia es, quizás, un tanto ingenua e infantil bajo la perspectiva actual. En otro orden de cosas, es más un libro de misterio que una novela de detectives. De todos modos es una lectura maravillosa y tiene algunos momentos memorables que son bastante graciosos y muy ingeniosos. Me di cuenta, después de haberlo leído, que probablemente había leído este libro cuando era un niño, pero yo sólo recuerdo el título en español. Vale la pena señalar que Tommy y Tuppence son un par de personajes más complejos que la señorita Marple y Poirot que, en cierto sentido, son mucho más simples y excesivamente estereotipados. Además, a lo largo de los años, Tommy y Tuppence envejecen, lo que no es el caso en las novelas de Miss Marple y Poirot.

Mi valoración: B (Me gustó mucho)

Ver reseña de El misterioso Sr. Brown en Golem – Memorias de lectura y en Proyecto Agatha Christie.

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