#431: The D.A. Cooks a Goose (1942) by Erle Stanley Gardner

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It is slightly over a year since I decided to reread the Doug Selby novels of Erle Stanley Gardner, and while I sort of imagined I’d be done by now — nine books into twelve months goes fairly easily — I had not counted on how much I enjoyed the ones I’d read first time around, and so how I would draw out this revisiting so as to enjoy them equally now.  And, even more fun, it turns out that I hadn’t read this one (side note: does anyone actually read the synopses of authors they love in advance of reading the book?  You’re gonna read it anyway, right, so why would it matter what it’s about?) — so it felt like a new Doug Selby novel even though, yes, no, I’m aware it isn’t.

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#430: Minor Felonies – Arsenic for Tea, a.k.a. Poison is Not Polite (2015) by Robin Stevens

Arsenic for Tea

Most people who write and publish one novel go on to complete a second, yet the second is often the one deemed ‘difficult’.  I suppose it’s the not knowing whether a universe and characters previously deployed will stretch over another 100,000 words, or whether a writer used up all their good ideas on Book 1 and so Book 2 is likely to fall on drier ground.

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#426: Slippery Staircase (1938) by E.C.R. Lorac

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I have thus far seen E.C.R. Lorac’s Chief Inspector Macdonald investigate a handful of rather unusual crimes — a man dropping dead in his garden, a body appearing in a car during a London Particular, and maybe a murder following a “How would you commit a murder?” game — but this is by far the most unusual: an old lady falling down the communal stairwell outside her top floor flat.  Footprint evidence shows no-one could have been near her at the time and, but for the equally unsuspicious death of her sister in virtually the exact same manner a few months previously, there is no reason to suspect foul play.

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