Still no baby. I am as of today a week overdue. *zzzzz* My father is annoying the hell out of me by ringing every other day to see if anything is happening. No, we did say we would ring when there is news. Ergo, e contrario.... I've taken to checking who's calling.
Well, last week I stopped by our local library branch and browsed. Picked up a few detective stories I thought I hadn't read, but discovered I had. Well, I'd read 2 out of 5. No matter, I didn't remember much of them.
Lawrence Block: The Burglar Who Painted Like Mondrian
I've read one Block before, and although I found it rather fun, that was all. I never blogged properly about it. In any case, this one was much better. Characters felt both more real and more detailed. It was cheekier and funnier, and had a less silly storyline. The end was so confusing with a myriad of Mondrian paintings real and false that I'm not sure it all fit together, but let's assume it did. Block's books are not easy to stumble across here in Sweden, but I'm going to keep an eye open for them. Apparently (I now learnt from the inside of the cover) he is astoundingly productive and just churns 'em out. Who knew?
John Dickson Carr
I got three books, and I'd read two of them before. All three are from the late 1940s (well, the youngest was published 1950), so the setting is an England during food and fuel shortages, with plenty of references to the war. The oldest was Till Death Do Us Part from -44. In the small village of Six Ashes the writer Dick Markham is told that his fiancée, of whom he knows virtually nothing, is a dangerous woman who has killed two husbands and a lover with poison. The police could never prove anything, since the deaths appeared to be suicides inside locked rooms (Dickson Carr's favourite theme). The next day the man who tells him this is found dead by the same means, and Gideon Fell makes an appearance on the scene. It's not a bad example of its type, but not brilliant. Then comes He Who Whispers from -46. Miles Hammond, who recently has inherited a library, a house and a lot of money, is invited by Gideon Fell to a meeting of the Murder Club. The subject of the evening will be a murder of an Englishman that took place in France just before the war. However, once there there are no members at the dinner, only the speaker and another female guest, so the story is told to Hammond and the woman alone. The next day Hammond discovers that he has just hired the prime suspect of the murder to work for him, cataloguing his library. Etc. Again, sort of interesting, not brilliant. Over-dramatic, with lots of hints of dark sexuality and so on. Below Suspicion is the youngest, and a most farfetched tale including Satanists and underground nightclubs filled with vicious Cockneys. Our main character here is an extremely self-assured Irish-born lawyer, who successfully defends a young woman accused of murdering her employer, even though he believes her guilty. I almost laughed out loud at the Satanist bits. Hum hum.