The Mystery of the Blue Train by Agatha Christie

The Mystery of the Blue Train by Agatha Christie

Yes, Poirot again. I've been on a bit of a kick lately, I know. I'm almost reading/re-reading the series in order. I #4 earlier this year and obviously still remember it well. I skipped #5 because I don't like it. So now we're at #6, The Mystery of the Blue Train. There's a lot of lead up before the murder. We meet an heiress whose millionaire father gives her a fabulous ruby to cheer her up a little. She and her husband are having problems and, as the father sees it, her only real option is to divorce him. We meet the husband and his mistress, a dancer who is only interested in rich men, which he won't be if his wife divorces him. We meet a not necessarily above-board jewelry merchant and his daughter. Finally, I think, we meet a lovely young woman, Katherine Grey, who has recently become rich herself, after the elderly woman she was a companion to...
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The Murder on the Links by Agatha Christie

The Murder on the Links by Agatha Christie

So, I've discovered that, depending on what's going on in the office and what I'm doing, I can listen to audiobooks at work. When I'm folding newsletter, for example, or copying and pasting graphs. But, they can't be overly complicated or at all potentially offensive, which means vintage mysteries, like Agatha Christies work well. They tend to not have any curse words, most of the violence happens off-stage and is not graphic, there's enough of a plot to keep you interested, but they're not so absorbing that you can't just turn them off to answer the phone. In The Murder on the Links, Poirot receives a letter calling him to the aid of a millionaire in France, frightened for his life because of a 'secret' he possesses. Poirot, with Hastings, immediately leave England, only to find on arrival that Monsieur Renauld has already been killed and his body found on the golf course next door. The plot is pretty convoluted. As...
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Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie

Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie

Death on the Nile is a classic Poirot mystery.  Poirot is on vacation in Egypt, taking a cruise on the Nile - and of course a murder occurs. Happily, Colonel Race is on board too and the two of them take up the investigation. We've got a lot of people on board the cruise, including a young couple on their honeymoon who are being stalked by the husband's ex-girlfriend, a young society man and his mother, a romance author and her daughter, an elderly kleptomaniac and her travel companions, a couple questionable men, a maid, a doctor - so many that it can get a little confusing on audio. The narrator did a good job with all the voices, but it's still a lot. The characters are all interesting and have their own personalities and motives. And Poirot likes them all, or almost all of them. He gives several people passes on their less serious crimes. It's the "hush, hush" house....
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The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is definitely one of Agatha Christie's best, but it was a reread for me, so I knew who the killer was. And the whodunnit is what makes this such a great mystery. Hercule Poirot has "retired" to the peaceful village of  King’s Abbot, keeping his former career as a detective a secret, but of course someone - Roger Ackroyd - is killed. Ackroyd was actually a friend of Poirot, one of the few who knew his work, and the niece, Flora, asks Poirot to investigate. Poirot doesn't have his Hastings here, so the part of narrator/sidekick is covered by Dr. Sheppard, Poirot's neighbor and the one who discovered the body. Poirot is his usual silly, brilliant self. I like that we meet him before he takes the case and I love that they assume he used to be a hairdresser. "Look at that moustache of his." The mystery is well-plotted with plenty of suspects and red herrings. I enjoyed...
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The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson

I probably shouldn't have read The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck, since I can't actually say the title out loud, but I kept seeing it around and the audio was the prefect length for a couple of drives I made last weekend. I really liked the first part of the book. Basically, the media and internet and the world want us to care about everything, but that's not the way to a happy, fulfilling life. You need to choose what you care about, what values really matter to you. Manson shares thoughts that while not original are true, like pain and struggle are unavoidable; facing hard truths about ourselves helps us grow; and failure, as so long as we learn from it, can lead to success; that sometimes just doing something is better than waiting for inspiration. I got a little bored towards the end. A lot of the book is repetitious and his anecdotes can get a little annoying. Maybe...
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l’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara

l’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara

l'll Be Gone in the Dark is my first foray into true crime, which seems a little surprising. With the recent capture of the Golden State Killer and all the positive reviews of the book, I took a chance. I didn't know anything about the Golden State Killer until the recent news coverage. He committed at least 12 murders, more than 50 rapes, and over 100 burglaries in California from 1974 to 1986. And it took detectives until this year to capture him. McNamara died before Joseph James DeAngelo was arrested, but the book is fascinating. It details the crimes, without being overly graphic. She talks about the victims and their families, how the crimes affected them, their families and their communities. She goes over the evidence and talks to detectives. She works with other amateur sleuths and is tireless in her own investigation with the resources she can access. But we also learn about her, about how she thinks, what drives...
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