For some reason – despite writing last week about how much I love reading in the winter months – the number of books I’ve gotten through has really tailed off since the summer, and November was no exception.
After setting myself the challenge of only reading books from my TBR pile, I managed to knock three previously unread novels off the list.
The first was Rebecca, by Daphne du Maurier, which I seem to have heard an awful lot about recently. It’s been sitting on my shelf for years and now seemed like the perfect time to read it.
Initially, I wasn’t sure this novel was going to live up to my expectations. I found the first half a little slow, but once it reached the halfway point and the mystery element of the story really kicked in, I flew through the remaining pages. In the end, I did enjoy it, although it’s very much a product of its time.
After taking a couple of weeks to finish Rebecca, I wanted to read something a bit quicker, so I opted for a couple of crime thrillers.
The first was The Ice Princess, by Camilla Lackberg. I’ve read several of the later books in this series, which follows the investigations of a policeman from a small Swedish town and his writer partner. The Ice Princess is the first novel in the series; it was a fairly average mystery, but it was interesting to fill in the gaps with the character development and relationships.
The other crime novel was also from a Scandinavian series: this time Strange Shores, the final book in the Erlendur series by Icelandic author Arnaldur Indridason. Rather than being a police procedural like the other books in the series, this story delves deeper into the Erlendur character and the childhood trauma that has defined his life: the loss of his younger brother during a fierce storm in the Icelandic countryside.
Similar stories are a tragic part of Icelandic history, thanks to the nature of the landscape and the sudden storms that can spring up.
November’s reads (contains affiliate links)
- Rebecca (VMC), by Daphe du Maurier
- The Ice Princess (Patrick Hedstrom and Erica Falck, Book 1), by Camilla Lackberg
- Strange Shores (Reykjavik Murder Mysteries 9), by Arnaldur Indridason