Tuesday, March 27, 2018

2018 Color Coded Challenge




The challenge is located here, to read nine titles in the following categories.

Here is my progress. 
All 9 complete!



Titles are linked to my reviews.


1. A book with "Blue" or any shade of Blue (Turquoise, Aquamarine, Navy, etc) in the title/on the cover. 


  • complete: The Blue Horse of Taxco by Kathleen Moore Knight
  • note for next time? The Blue Hand by Edgar Wallace
  • note for next time? Mystery of the Blue Train by Agatha Christie



2. A book with "Red" or any shade of Red (Scarlet, Crimson, Burgandy, etc) in the title/on the cover.

  • complete: The Red Mass by Valentine Williams
  • note for next time? The Scarlet Letters by Ellery Queen
  • note for next time? The Red Lamp by Mary Roberts Rinehart
  • note for next time? A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle
  • note for next time? Crimson Friday by Dorothy Cameron Disney
  • note for next time? The Crimson Circle by Edgar Wallace


3. A book with "Yellow" or any shade of Yellow (Gold, Lemon, Maize, etc.)in the title/on the cover.

  • complete: The Yellow Room by Mary Roberts Rinehart
  • note for next time? Gold Comes in Bricks by A. A. Fair (Erle Stanley Gardner)
  • note for next time? The Golden Spiders by Rex Stout
  • note for next time? The Golden Goose by Ellery Queen
  • note for next time? Mystery of the Gold Box by Valentine Williams



4. A book with "Green" or any shade of Green (Emerald, Lime, Jade, etc) in the title/on the cover.

  • complete: The Jade Venus by George Harmon Coxe
  • note for next time? The Man in the Green Hat by Manning Coles
  • note for next time? Green Hazard by Manning Coles
  • note for next time? The Case of the Green Eyed Sister by Erle Stanley Gardner
  • note for next time? The Green Ribbon by Edgar Wallace
  • I just couldn't bring myself to claim "The Greene Murder Case" by S. S. Van Dine for this one!


5. A book with "Brown" or any shade of Brown (Tan, Beige, Sand etc) in the title/on the cover.





6. A book with "Black" or any shade of Black (Jet, Ebony, Charcoal, etc) in the title/on the cover.


  • complete:  The Ebony Bed Murder by Rufus Gillmore (1932)
  • complete: Acts of Black Night by Kathleen Moore Knight (1938)
  • note for next time? The Black Mountain by Rex Stout
  • note for next time? Black Orchids by Rex Stout


7. A book with "White" or any shade of White (Ivory, Eggshell, Cream, etc)in the title/on the cover.

  • complete: White Rider by Leslie Charteris
  • note for next time? The White Elephant Mystery by Ellery Queen
  • note for next time? The Window at the White Cat by Mary Roberts Rinehart
  • note for next time? White Face by Edgar Wallace




8. A book with any other color in the title/on the cover (Purple, Orange, Silver, Pink, Magneta, etc.).  

  • complete: The False Purple by Sydney Horler (1932)
  • note for next time? The Chinese Orange Mystery by Ellery Queen
  • note for next time? Ride the Pink Horse by Dorothy Hughes
  • note for next time? The Silver Key by Edgar Wallace


9. A book with a word that implies color (Rainbow, Polka-dot, Plaid, Paisley, Stripe, etc.).

  • complete: Miss Paisley on a Diet by John Pierce (1969) This is a short story, I was unable to find a full length book in this category.


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Friday, March 2, 2018

2018 Just the Facts, Ma'am Challenge



This challenge is found here. My goal is to achieve the Chief Inspector level by reading 24 books from the Golden Age of mysteries (published prior to 1960) during 2018: four from each category of the Detective Notebook below. Read all about it and join in!



Working my way up the ranks:

Could this be Bev and me? Alas, no. Photo from Grand Valley State University Police Academy by Rick VanGrouw

  • Constable: 6 of 6 complete!
  • Detective Sergeant: 12 of 12 complete!
  • Inspector: 18 of 18 books complete!
  • Chief Inspector: 24  of 24 books complete!







Titles below are links to my reviews.

WHO 

  1. (Academic): Death Points a Finger by Will Levinrew (1933), in which retired professor Herman Brierly is the detective
  2. (Crime Solving Duo): The D.A.'s Daughter (1943) by Herman Petersen, in which neighbors Henry Wilbur and Lydia Bannock (The D.A.'s daughter) team up to solve the apparent murder of a local woman.
  3. (Amateur detective): Scotland Yard Can Wait! (preliminary title was Death Holds the Key) by David Frome (1933), in which Jerry Drake, a junior lawyer, is the amateur detective
  4. (Journalist): For Sale - Murder by Will Levinrew (1932) in which Richard Quantrell Marlow is a reporter for the Newark Evening Bulletin
WHAT
  1. (Pseudonymous author): The Tragedy of X by Barnaby Ross / Ellery Queen (1932)
  2. (Color in title): The Yellow Room by Mary Roberts Rinehart (1945)
  3. (Animal in title): Spider House by F. Van Wyck Mason (1932)
  4. (Refers to man or woman): The Greene Murder Case by S. S. Van Dine (1928), in which the title refers to Julia Greene, victim
  5. (Two words with same letter): The Merrivale Mystery by James Corbett (1931)
WHEN 

  1. (Timing of crime is crucial): The Garden Murder Case by S. S. Van Dine, in which there are two sucessive gunshots, but which one did the deed and which one was the red herring? It was reviewed by Bev Hankins here
  2. (Weather event): Two and Two Make Twenty-Two by Gwen Bristow and Bruce Manning (1932) in which the characters are stranded on an island during a fierce storm.
  3. (During a cruise): The Needle's Kiss by Austin J. Small (1929), in which the action takes place aboard the Chinese freighter Yangtse while docked in London. I am stretching the 'cruise' point a bit, as the ship is moored to the dock for 307 of the 312 pages, finally getting underway with 5 pages remaining. Oh, wait! Here is a backup title: Later on I read The Bronze Hand by Carolyn Wells (1925) which takes place on a real honest-to-goodness cruise: the S. S. Pinnacle en route from New York to Liverpool.
  4. (Special event): The Ebony Bed Murder by Rufus Gillmore (1932) in which the victim is murdered at her birthday party (how rude!)
WHERE

  1. (Country House): The Winter Murder Case by S. S. Van Dine (1939); in which the action takes place at the Rexon estate in the Berkshires of Massachusetts.
  2. (On mode of transport): The Tunnel Mystery by J. C. Lenehan (1932); in which the victim is shot in a railway carriage as it passes through a tunnel
  3. (On an island): Acts of Black Night by Kathleen Moore Knight (1938); in which a murder occurs on Stowaway Island off the New England coast.
  4. (In a locked room): The Kennel Murder Case by S. S. Van Dine (1933); in which Archer Coe is found dead in a locked room, with the windows all locked too of course. 
HOW

  1. (Death by poison): The Bishop Murder Case by S. S. Van Dine (1929), in which Philo Vance switches wine glasses, causing the murderer to drink poison. No prosecution necessary!
  2. (Knife/dagger/etc.): Murder in the French Room by Helen Joan Hultman (1932); in which the victim is stabbed by a makeshift dagger - a pair of scissors. Ouch!
  3. (At least 2 deaths by different means): The Mardi Gras Murders by Gwen Bristow and Bruce Manning, in which victim #1 (Roger Parnell) is knifed, victim #2 (Cynthia Fonteney) is lured to lean over a high railing which has been sawn almost through, and victim #3 (Mark Oliver) is shot.
  4. (Blunt instrument): The Kidnap Murder Case by S. S. Van Dine (1936) in which Kaspar Kenting is done in with the legendary blunt instrument and carelessly dumped in the East River.
WHY 

  1. (Reviewed by a fellow challenger): The Patient in Room 18 by Mignon Eberhart. Bev Hankins reviewed this book here on My Reader's Block.
  2. (Author never tried before): The Stingaree Murders by W. Shepard Pleasants (by definition, as he only wrote this one book :-)
  3. (Author read & loved): The False Purple by Sydney Horler, I have read his thriller titles The Curse of Doone and Peril! before.
  4. (Made into film): The Scarab Murder Case by S. S. Van Dine. Good luck finding it. IMDb says: One of the "75 Most Wanted" films listed by the British Film Institute as "Missing, believed lost".
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2018 Alphabet Soup challenge



This challenge is found here. The goal is to read 26 books of your choice during 2018: each one starting with a different letter of the alphabet. Read all about it and join in! Here is my inspirational statement for you:

[I] Always Begin Carefully Dissecting Every Forgotten Good [book] Hoping I Just Keep Literally [finding] My Next [book] On Paper. [Reading] Quotas Really Stink [but] They Ultimately Vanish With X’s [checked off on my] Yearly Zen-like [reading list].

My titles highlighted in green are completed
My title highlighted in yellow is under the reading lamp right now
My titles shown in grey are upcoming reads

26 of 26 complete!

Titles below are links to my reviews.

My 2018 Alphabet Soup bowl:

* From the rules: For those pesky Q, X AND Z titles then the word that starts with the challenge letter can be anywhere in the title.


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