I’ve taken on Cathy’s 20 Books of Summer Challenge and have a little bit to report. I finished two books and DNF’d a third.
Mrs. Pargeter’s Pound of Flesh by Simon Brett. The fourth installment of the series went quickly and enjoyably. It’s slight, but the skewering of weight-loss and self-help gurus was a lot of fun. You don’t want to start here, but if you’re been reading the previous books then you’ll appreciate the appearance of Stan the Stapler, Ankle-Deep Arkwright, and other devoted associates of the late Mr. Pargeter. I saw the plot twists and the whodunit coming a mile away, but that’s not why I read these. I read them for Brett’s dry humor and the comfort of spending time with a well-executed cozy mystery.
Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith. This wasn’t on my original list but should have been, since I’ve had it cued up in the TBR for months, just waiting for a road trip. I switched to the ebook version to finish because we still had 4 hours of audio to go when we got to California and I wanted to find out whodunit. I’m a little worried that the Strike books are getting longer with each installment in the same way the Harry Potter books did. Nonetheless, it was another satisfying entry in the series. Strike doesn’t change much, and I’m still side-eyeing the possible Strike-Robin romance, but the mystery was twisty and interesting and Robin’s character continues to expand and develop. My discomfort with the Big Reveal of Robin’s past remains, as well as her essentially reactive role, and I’m so very tired of serial killers who prey on women. But Rowling is a terrific storyteller and while I’d more or less guessed the villain’s identity, the twist took me by surprise. Bring on the next installment.