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Old 08-22-2009, 12:33 PM   #1
pilotbob
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September 09 Book Club Nominations

Help us select the next book that the Mobile Read book club will read for September 2009.

The nominations will run through Aug 27th.
Voting (new poll thread) will run for 5 days starting Aug 28.

Book selection category for September per the "official" club opening thread is:

September 09
Mystery (can be from anywhere, including our library)

Must be available as an eBook!!!

In order for a book to be included in the poll it needs THREE NOMINATIONS (original nomination, a second and a third).

How Does This Work?
The Mobile Read Book Club (MRBC) is an informal club that requires nothing of you. Each month a book is selected by polling. On the last week of that month a discussion thread is started for the book. If you want to participate feel free. There is no need to "join" or sign up. All are welcome.

How Does a Book Get Selected?
Each book that is nominated will be listed in a pool at the end of the nomination period. The book that polls the most votes will be the official selection.

How Many Nominations Can I Make?
Each participant has 3 nominations. You can nominate a new book for consideration or nominate (second, third) one that has already been nominated by another person.

How Do I Nominate a Book?
Please just post a message with your nomination. If you are the FIRST to nominate a book, please try to provide an abstract to the book so others may consider their level of interest.

How Do I Know What Has Been Nominated?
Just follow the thread. This message will be updated with the status of the nominations as often as I can. If one is missed, please just post a message with a multi-quote of the 3 nominations and it will be added to the list ASAP.

When is the Poll?
The poll thread will open at the end of the nomination period, or once there have been 10 books with 3 nominations each. At that time a link to the poll thread will be posted here and this thread will be closed.

The floor is open to nominations.


Official choices each with three nominations:

The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie
Belgian detective Hercule Poirot's first case, in which he investigates some strange goings-on in Styles St Mary, and has nothing more than a shattered coffee cup, a splash of candle grease and a bed of begonias for clues.

The Chinese Parrot (Charlie Chan Omnibus) by Biggs
Biggers, Earl Derr: Charlie Chan Omnibus. v4, 22 May 2009
An omnibus edition of the "Charlies Chan" detective stories of Earl Derr Biggers. This volume contains the following books:

1. The House Without a Key
2. The Chinese Parrot
3. Behind that Curtain
4. The Black Camel
5. Charlie Chan Carries On
6. Keeper of the Keys

If your view of Charlie Chan comes from the dozens of very bad, semi-comic movies made in the 1940s and 50s, then read these books and you're in for a pleasant surprise. The books have extremely well-crafted plots ("The Chinese Parrot" is my personal favourite) and are well worth reading.

Lady Molly of Scotland Yard by by Baroness Orczy
Feisty, brilliant, and beautiful; precursor of the sleuth who relies on brains rather than brawn, Lady Molly, and her faithful sidekick and admiring chronicler Mary, began appearing in Orczy's entertaining stories years before the first Englishwoman did in fact become an officer of the law.

A Beautiful Blue Death by Charles Finch
Set in England in 1865, Finch's impressive debut introduces an appealing gentleman sleuth, Charles Lenox. When Lady Jane Grey's former servant, Prue Smith, dies in an apparent suicide-by-poisoning, Lady Jane asks Lenox, her closest friend, to investigate. The attractive young maid had been working in the London house of George Barnard, the current director of the Royal Mint. Lenox quickly determines that Smith's death was a homicide, but both Barnard and Scotland Yard resist that conclusion, forcing him to work discreetly. Aided by his Bunter-like butler and friend, Graham, the detective soon identifies a main suspect, only to have that theory shattered by that man's murder. Finch laces his writing with some Wodehousian touches and devises a solution intricate enough to fool most readers. Lovers of quality historical whodunits will hope this is the first in a series.

Mistress of the Art of Death by Ariana Franklin
Loved it. This was basically 'CSI set in 12th century Cambridge.' The main character is a female doctor who is essentially a coroner. She examines remains and tries to find out what happened to them. She is loaned by Rome (Italy has female doctors in the 12th century) to investigate a series of child murders in Cambridge. I read this earlier in the year and loved it. There is some early subterfuge where she tries to hide that it's her who is the doctor because England doesn't have woman doctors yet, but the core of the story is the mystery itself of who is the bad guy.

Murder Must Advertise by Dorothy Sayers
When advertising executive Victor Dean dies from a fall down the stairs at Pym's Publicity, Lord Peter Wimsey is asked to investigate. It seems that, before he died, Dean had begun a letter to Mr. Pym suggesting some very unethical dealings at the posh London ad agency. Wimsey goes undercover and discovers that Dean was part of the fast crowd at Pym's, a group taken to partying and doing drugs. Wimsey and his brother-in-law, Chief-Inspector Parker, rush to discover who is running London's cocaine trade and how Pym's fits into the picture--all before Wimsey's cover is blown.

Last edited by pilotbob; 09-01-2009 at 07:14 PM.
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Old 08-23-2009, 09:54 AM   #2
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The Chinese Parrot (Charlie Chan Omnibus by Biggs) an MR book. I always loved Charlie Chan and can't wait to get into this one.
Here is the info.
Biggers, Earl Derr: Charlie Chan Omnibus. v4, 22 May 2009
An omnibus edition of the "Charlies Chan" detective stories of Earl Derr Biggers. This volume contains the following books:

1. The House Without a Key
2. The Chinese Parrot
3. Behind that Curtain
4. The Black Camel
5. Charlie Chan Carries On
6. Keeper of the Keys

If your view of Charlie Chan comes from the dozens of very bad, semi-comic movies made in the 1940s and 50s, then read these books and you're in for a pleasant surprise. The books have extremely well-crafted plots ("The Chinese Parrot" is my personal favourite) and are well worth reading.

Chan, the first Chinese detective in literature, was modeled after Chang Apana, a real-life police detective in Honolulu.

Enjoy!


EDIT: 11 Jun 07

The 5th book in the series, "Charlie Chan Carries On", has now appeared on PG Australia so, as promised, I've added it to the omnibus and uploaded v2. Although it says it's an "Abridged Edition" I think, looking at the file size, that the abridgement is minor. Obviously if an "unabridged" version appears, I'll replace it.

EDIT: 21 May 08

Recreated the omnibus with much improved layout and formatting, to fix a problem with poor layout and incorrect paragraph breaks. Uploaded v3.

EDIT: 22 May 09

MR user "Bones" has been kind enough to supply an unabridged version of "Charlie Chan Carries On" so, as promised, here's a new version of the omnibus with the unabridged version of that book. The new version is about a third longer than the previous, abridged, version of the book. Uploaded v4.


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Old 08-23-2009, 10:04 AM   #3
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I've been saving rereading this one for September. Hopefully it will win. And the nominated winner is...

The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie

Quote:
Belgian detective Hercule Poirot's first case, in which he investigates some strange goings-on in Styles St Mary, and has nothing more than a shattered coffee cup, a splash of candle grease and a bed of begonias for clues.
I will be doing an ePub version of this as well for those who would prefer such. It is already in LRF, IMP, and Mobipcket.
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Old 08-23-2009, 10:18 AM   #4
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I nominate "The Red Thumb Mark", by R. Austin Freeman, contained in the "Dr. Thorndyke Omnibus, Vol 1" available here at MR.

This is the first appearance of Freeman's "Dr. Thorndyke"; a criminal lawyer who solves crimes via the application of science. Moreover, it's also the first detective story in which fingerprints play a prominent part, and is an interesting historical "snapshot" from that perspective. Finally, it's a damned good detective story!
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Old 08-23-2009, 12:35 PM   #5
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I'll second the Mysterious Affair at Styles nomination. I've been meaning to read some Agatha Christie for a while, so that looks as good a place as any to start. And depending on how busy things are at work, I may take this up as my first ePub-by-hand project.
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Old 08-23-2009, 01:05 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Abecedary View Post
I'll second the Mysterious Affair at Styles nomination. I've been meaning to read some Agatha Christie for a while, so that looks as good a place as any to start. And depending on how busy things are at work, I may take this up as my first ePub-by-hand project.
I'll third it.
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Old 08-23-2009, 06:49 PM   #7
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I vote for the Charlie Chan because I never considered reading one (having those horrible movies in mind).
But I don't mind if Agatha Christie wins because I read this last year and wouldn't mind reading it again as I thoroughly enjoyed it. Having a clear mental picture of Hercule Poirot from the BBC series brings it to life for me.
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Old 08-24-2009, 04:15 AM   #8
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I'll third the Charlie Chan suggestion. I can't remember if I've ever read them, but they look fun.
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Old 08-25-2009, 11:27 AM   #9
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I'd love to try the Charlie Chan, since I've never read any of those stories.
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Old 08-25-2009, 01:55 PM   #10
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I nominate "Lady Molly of Scotland Yard", a collection of short stories.
Here's a blurb by HarryT from the BBeb/LRF edition here on MR: "Feisty, brilliant, and beautiful; precursor of the sleuth who relies on brains rather than brawn, Lady Molly, and her faithful sidekick and admiring chronicler Mary, began appearing in Orczy's entertaining stories years before the first Englishwoman did in fact become an officer of the law."
It's similar to "The Mysterious Affair at Styles" in that the one telling the story isn't the one who solves the mystery and that since this was written early 20th century, forensics isn't the focus for solving the case.
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Old 08-25-2009, 02:00 PM   #11
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Anyone have any more current/contemporary books they can nominate? I'd really like to find a good author of mysteries that is alive and kicking.

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Old 08-25-2009, 02:27 PM   #12
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Awww Bob. And just as I'm finishing up making my ePub of the Agatha Christie book. Hopefully should have it ready by tomorrow. I want to check a few things out against a paper copy first, though (did she really use so many strings of em-dashes?).
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Old 08-25-2009, 07:01 PM   #13
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Is it ok for a newbie to make a nomination? I was thinking that the ones that have been nominated are excellent, but they're also ones a mystery reader would be aware of already. So I thought I'd nominate something new (ok, pilotbob?). I nominate "A Beautiful Blue Death" by Charles Finch. It's won a number of awards, and it was the first book I bought for GRUBERG (my K1). It's set in 1865 England and exceptionally well written. There's already a second in the series - The September Society - and a third is supposed to be in the works.
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Old 08-25-2009, 07:03 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Is it ok for a newbie to make a nomination?
It certainly is. The more the merrier.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CCLady View Post
So I thought I'd nominate something new (ok, pilotbob?).
Yea! (BTW: I have nothing against Agatha Christie or other classics)

Quote:
Originally Posted by CCLady View Post
I nominate "A Beautiful Blue Death" by Charles Finch. It's won a number of awards, and it was the first book I bought for GRUBERG (my K1). It's set in 1865 England and exceptionally well written. There's already a second in the series - The September Society - and a third is supposed to be in the works.
Thanks... do you have a short abstract/summary/back of the book type blurb you could add to your nomination?

EDIT: I found this on Amazon:

Quote:
Set in England in 1865, Finch's impressive debut introduces an appealing gentleman sleuth, Charles Lenox. When Lady Jane Grey's former servant, Prue Smith, dies in an apparent suicide-by-poisoning, Lady Jane asks Lenox, her closest friend, to investigate. The attractive young maid had been working in the London house of George Barnard, the current director of the Royal Mint. Lenox quickly determines that Smith's death was a homicide, but both Barnard and Scotland Yard resist that conclusion, forcing him to work discreetly. Aided by his Bunter-like butler and friend, Graham, the detective soon identifies a main suspect, only to have that theory shattered by that man's murder. Finch laces his writing with some Wodehousian touches and devises a solution intricate enough to fool most readers. Lovers of quality historical whodunits will hope this is the first in a series. (June)
Sounds good, I will second this one!

BOb
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Old 08-25-2009, 08:44 PM   #15
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"A Beautiful Blue Death" by Charles Finch sounds fascinating, even, or especially, for a sci-fi fan.

.....IF.... it can be found (I haven't tried yet - MR tends to time me out if I go search for other things) IF it can be found for non-Kindle readers DRM Mobipocket is OK for me :-) Then I will third it and expand my reading horizons...

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