20 Books of Summer ’22

It’s almost June so that means 20 Books of Summer, hosted every year by Cathy at 746 books, is upon us once more. Despite my failures in previous years, I’m going to have another go but I have Purpose and A Plan this time round.

I have decided to use this pretty relaxed challenge to restart some of the series I have neglected over the past wee while and get back into reading them again, and to read more physical volumes than ebooks.

If you are interested in joining the challenge then the announcement post is here and Cathy’s own list is here.

But what about my list? Well, here we go…….

The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry – yes, I know I’m way behind everyone else in getting to this, and I’ve had it for ages (I was gift for Christmas one year. Or my birthday. I forget) but I like to read the book before I watch an adaptation and one T Hiddleston is the male lead in this so what can you do?

Keeping the Dead by Tess Gerritsen – the seventh in the Rizzoli & Isles series; can’t remember when I read number six but we’ve been catching up on the TV series and although is hugely different it made me want to pick up the books again

Lies Sleeping by Ben Aaronovitch – depending on whether you count the novellas or not (for info, I do) this is either the seventh or eighth in the Rivers of London series (how many times do you think I can type the word ‘series’ in this post, I wonder?).I actually started reading this ages ago, got almost halfway through and then stopped for reasons I can no longer recall. Will start from the beginning once more

Dreaming Spies by Laurie R King – the Mary Russell series hits volume 13. I love her and want to get back into the swing of Holmes-related stories again

Bryant & May: Strange Tide by Christopher Fowler – I have been neglecting Mr Fowler over the past few years and will put this right by starting off with number 13 in a series I have been reading forever. Until I wasn’t.

A Dangerous Place by Jacqueline Winspear – Maisie Dobbs returns having headed abroad at the end of volume 10; one of my favourite fictional characters, now lurching towards the outbreak of WW2

The Chosen and the Beautiful by Nghi Vo – the first of the standalone reads, this is a reimagining of the life of Jordan baker, one of the characters from The Great Gatsby. Really looking forward to this one, might be reading this near the beginning of the challenge

Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid – I’ve had this one on my TBR pile for ages, and as well as wanting to read it on its own terms, I’m hoping it will also lead me back into David Mitchell’s Utopia Avenue. I love rock band stories (the best being, of course, Espedair Street by Iain Banks. I will not argue about this)

Holy Terror: Stories by Cherie Priest – a bit of horror & creepiness in short form. I haven’t been reading a lot of short stories recently and this looks just wonderful.

The Poisoner’s Handbook By Deborah Blum – because it wouldn’t be a reading list of mine without death and destruction in a nonfiction form; pretty sure this will do what it says on the tin

A Life in Death by Richard Venable – nor is it a Bride list without something true crime adjacent; this is the story of Det. Insp. Venables, an expert in Disaster Victim Identification and a member of the UK Police’s Major Disaster Advisory Team

The Fall of Robespierre by Colin Jones – an hour by hour analysis of the last day of Robespierre’s leadership during the French Revolution. The only proper history book on this list; what have I become 🙂

Dreadful Company by Vivian Shaw – the second in the Dr Greta Helsing trilogy, our heroine is in Paris and dealing with vampires. Again.

Harrow the Ninth by Tamsin Muir – I loved Gideon the Ninth and don’t know why I’ve waited this long to read the follow-up; whatever the reason, encouragement has been provided by the imminent release of the next volume

A Line to Kill by Anthony Horowitz – the third in the series where Horowitz himself is the sidekick to the detective Hawthorne. I really like this clever series and am especially looking forward to reading this one

A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers – the second Wayfarers book, where Lovelace, once a ship’s AI, wakes up in a new body and has to figure a lot of things out…

The Nightmare Stacks by Charles Stross – the eighth (I think) novel in the Laundry Files universe; another one that I started and set aside for a while but again I’m incentivised by having read one of the shorts in the same series and remembering how much fun these are. Sort of Lovecraft meets the civil service….

Business as Usual by Jane Oliver and Ann Stafford – I mentioned this in my most recent weekly round-up. I do love an epistolary novel

The End of the Day by Claire North – I love Claire North’s work but have fallen a little bit behind in reading her books, so this challenge feels the right time to pick her up again. She is such an intelligent and talented writer.

Relic by Preston & Child – I remember seeing the film version of this many moons ago not realising that it was based on this novel, the start of a long and well regarded series featuring FBI Agent Pendergast. Hopefully the first of many.

And that’s it. Not a bad list I think, and we’ll see how I get on – watch this space!

3 thoughts on “20 Books of Summer ’22

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