Some recent additions…

It’s been a while since I posted about any new additions to my TBR, so I thought I’d share with you some recently acquired books which I discovered in a second-hand bookshop this morning:

The Sussex Downs Murder by John Bude – I love the British Library Crime Classics series, although I haven’t read many of them. This will be the first one I’ve read by John Bude.

Busman’s Honeymoon by Dorothy L Sayers – A Lord Peter Wimsey mystery that I haven’t read yet.

Farewell the Tranquil Mind by RF Delderfield – I loved my first Delderfield novel, Long Summer Day, so I was pleased to come across another of his books. This one is set during the French Revolution.

The Dante Club by Matthew Pearl – I’m not sure about this one as I had mixed feelings about the other Matthew Pearl book I’ve read (The Last Dickens), but I thought it would be worth giving it a try.

The Persian Boy by Mary Renault – The second in her Alexander the Great trilogy. I already have the first book on my shelf but haven’t read it yet.


Have you read any of these? What did you think of them?

25 thoughts on “Some recent additions…

  1. Pam Thomas says:

    I haven’t read any of those British Library classic crime novels, but they’re wildly popular in the library and we have a semi-permanent display of them. I haven’t read anything by Delderfield either, or by Matthew Pearl, but I do like Busman’s Honeymoon – I’ve read it several times, even though I can remember not only who the murderer was, but how it was done. And Mary Renault is amongst my top 5 historical fiction authors (along with Dorothy Dunnett, Patrick O’Brian, and Rosemary Sutcliff – I can never decide who the fifth is). I wouldn’t read ‘The Persian Boy’ until you’ve read ‘Fire from Heaven’. They’re wonderful books which really bring Alexander to life, and you’ve a real treat in store.

    • Helen says:

      I haven’t read enough by Mary Renault yet for her to have become a favourite, but I’m looking forward to reading more of her books. I will definitely be reading Fire from Heaven first, but it’s nice to have the second book waiting on my shelf as well.

  2. Jennifer says:

    I agree with Pam: Mary Renault is one of my favourite historical fiction writers as well. Amd I’d definitely read ‘Fire from Heaven’ before ‘The Persian Boy’. A marvellous trilogy. I’ve read some R F Delderfield (but not that one). I read ‘The Dante Club’ about 10 years ago, and I liked it then. I’ve not read any of the other books you’ve listed. I hope that you enjoy them all.

    • Helen says:

      Thanks, Jennifer. I do want to read the Mary Renault books in the correct order. I’m pleased to hear you liked The Dante Club – I remember I wasn’t very impressed with The Last Dickens, but I hope I’ll have better luck with that one.

  3. Rachel Bailey says:

    The Persian Boy is one of Mary Renault’s finest. I can never decide whether I like that one or The Mask of Apollo best, though all of her historical work is worth reading. Be aware that Fire from Heaven and Funeral Games (first and third of the Alexander trilogy) are not nearly as good as Persian Boy, in my opinion.

    If you have not read Strong Poison, Have His Carcase, or Gaudy Night, I’d recommend reading those first, as it is a series of four. Another of Sayers’ best is Murder Must Advertise.

    I envy you, getting to read these for the first time!!

    • Helen says:

      The only Mary Renault book I’ve read so far is The King Must Die, so I’m looking forward to the rest of her books. And yes, I will be reading the four Sayers books in the right order. I have only read two of the earlier ones in the series (Whose Body? and Clouds of Witness) but I know the Harriet Vane books are supposed to be the best, so I thought I might skip the others and go straight to those.

  4. April Munday says:

    If you haven’t read Busman’s Honeymoon, you’re in for a treat. As Rachel says, it’s better if you’ve read the three earlier novels about Harriet Vane, preferably in the right order.

    • Helen says:

      Yes, the Delderfield does sound very different. I’m looking forward to it, but I still haven’t read Post of Honour so I’ll be reading that one first.

  5. kaggsysbookishramblings says:

    Lovely! The Bude and the Sayers are marvellous. I read some of the Pearl books back in the day and I think this was the best if I recall correctly. I didn’t like his Poe one at all, and gave up on The Last Dickens. Haven’t been near him since, but I think the Dante one was the best.

  6. Melita Kennedy says:

    I read The Persian Boy first of the Alexander trilogy. Like Rachel, I like it the best. Funeral Games–so much waste! I’ve only read it twice, I believe, versus high single digits for The Persian Boy. My first Renault was Last of the Wine, found in my college residence hall’s library. Last of the Wine is my 2nd favorite Renault.

    • Helen says:

      I have only read The King Must Die so far, so I still have Last of the Wine to look forward to, as well as the Alexander trilogy. I’m sorry to hear Funeral Games isn’t as good as The Persian Boy.

  7. FictionFan says:

    I haven’t read The Sussex Downs Murder yet but it’s on my Kindle – it’s one of Martin Edwards’ 100 Classic Crime Novels. I’ve read a couple of other books by Bude though, and enjoyed them, so hopefully we’ll both like this one!

  8. cirtnecce says:

    I really enjoyed Busman’s Honeymoon when I read it a couple of years back. Dante’s Club is book that honestly divides the population – some really like it and some do not! I have not read any Mary Renault and seems like I must look her up soon!!

    • Helen says:

      The Dante Club seems to have some great reviews and some bad ones, so I’ll be interested to see what I think. Mary Renault’s books all sound intriguing. I have only read one so far and didn’t really love it, but I’m hoping the next one I read will impress me more.

  9. jessicabookworm says:

    I hope you will enjoy all your new books Helen. I am afraid I haven’t read any of them, but I am always so tempted by those gorgeous British Library Crime Classics. πŸ™‚

    • Helen says:

      I love the covers of the British Library Crime Classics. I have had two or three from NetGalley, but this is the first one I have actually owned in paperback.

  10. Carmen says:

    Funny about Dante’s Club. I recently bought it on Kindle to have it in electronic format; I also own a paperback. I recently saw on Amazon that its rating was about three to three and a half stars. I read it when it was released and thought it was fantastic. BEWARE: It is very gruesome, but more credible and more accomplished (in my opinion anyways) than any of his successive books. Some of the characters are real historical figures, but some people have taken issue with the way they were portrayed.

    • Helen says:

      I’m glad to hear you liked The Dante Club enough to want it in both paperback and ebook! It sounds like a book that really divides opinion, but I’m looking forward to reading it.

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