The Wrong Mother by Sophie Hannah was the first of my fiction picks for the To Be Read Challenge. It’s a contemporary British mystery, with a plot that sounded interesting to me: a mother who needs a break sneaks away for a kid-free, husband-free vacation where she ends up having an affair. Fast forward one year later, and the wife and daughter of the man she met on vacation are found dead and when she sees this on the news, she notices that she looks like the wife. There were lots of twists and turns, which kept me intrigued. Tana French, who wrote two mysteries that I really like (In the Woods and The Likeness), wrote the blurb on the cover and she called it “gripping”, which I think was accurate. Definitely made me want to figure out what happened.
The Nine Tailors is a mystery by Dorothy L. Sayers. It was first published in 1934, and is set an English village. It involves a lot of “change-ringing” which is what you call the ringing of church bells apparently (when there is more than one church bell and it is done in an organized way). Despite a lack of interest in bells, I thought the book was a well-written, well-crafted mystery.
I originally read about the book here, but was pleasantly surprised halfway through to discover that is was on the 1,001 Books to Read Before You Die, so I’ve knocked another one off the list, without even really intending to. As a side note those Top 10 lists by various authors on the Guardian website are really great. Check them all out here.
There are actually two book by Sayers on the list, and only one by Agatha Christie, which surprised me because I was totally unfamiliar with Sayers, but now that I have read her, she reminds me of Agatha Christie.
Also on both the linked list from Kostova and the 1,001 Books list is The Secret History, which sounded good to me and may get read shortly. I totally feel like I am cheating at this challenge (in addition to being totally slow, hence ruining the “challenge” aspect), but I am enjoying the fact that there are mysteries that will fulfill the requirements!