A Change of Pace

Sasha: My Winter Adventurer

Friday, December 6, 2013

Delightful! A New Compendium of Christmas Mysteries

So I'm back from a week of ultra-high stress. Desperate students clamoring by email, "Yes, I know I've done almost no work for the whole semester, but there must be some way I can make it up by next week!"

Christmas Open House Contributing Bloggers:

Katrina of Pining for the West
(I believe there may be other participants who have posted, so I'll search this pm.)


My battered brain has been comforted by The Big Book of Christmas Mysteries, edited by Otto Penzler and published this year by Vintage Crime/Black Lizard original. The cover art is so well done--vibrant color. An enormous collection of well-chosen older stories and more modern ones. Excellent for gift giving. I read three stories last weekend and enjoyed each one, though I'll admit a special fondness for Mary Roberts Rinehart's "The Butler's Christmas," written in the middle years of World War II. From my perspective, it hit all the right notes, especially from the point of view of the characters and the situation. Another I liked a lot was Ron Goulart's "A Visit from Saint Nicholas." Offbeat, very funny, with a sizzling twist. The third one I tried is a long one--"An Early Christmas" by Doug Allyn. I haven't quite finished it. The story starts so humorously, with a great character, but he is killed by the beginning of the third page. I was extremely disappointed that the most interesting character in the story was knocked off so quickly. What a letdown!

4 comments:

  1. I have been eying this book, but I will probably wait awhile to buy it. Maybe sometime in 2014 so I can read some next December.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tracy,
      That's a plan! And you never know, perhaps your public library will purchase it.
      Judith

      Delete
  2. I do love that cover, but what a shame about that character being bumped off fast.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was especially ruinous because the later, more prominent characters were nowhere near as interesting. Sigh....
      Judith

      Delete