As usual I'm behind with reviews so this is a brief catch-up post.
My first book for June is Head in the Sand by Damien Boyd. This is my 16th. book for Bev's Calendar of Crime challenge, covering the November category of 'Primary action takes place this month' (I know this because there was talk of bonfire night and fireworks).
This is the second in the author's 'Nick Dixon' series, set fairly locally to me, in Somerset. I read the first book in April and quite liked it, enough to reserve book 2 from the library anyway. And I liked this one a bit more. It's a classic police procedural plot and is thus quite pacey so you need your wits about you, especially to remember who's who. My addled brain is not good at remembering huge casts of characters and what their relationship is to each other. It's a strong storyline though, a lot going on, and all linked to a cold case from 40 years ago. Some of it is hard reading, awful medical mistakes and so on, things that could easily still happen and do, so it's very sobering. But it's a delight to have a series set so close to where I live, to recognise place names and know exactly where they mean, particulary as that part of Somerset is not all that well known and doesn't harm from a bit of exposure. I shall read on in this series, definitely.
Death in Captivity by Michael Gilbert was one of several BLCC books kindly sent to me by Elaine at Random Jottings. It qualifies for Becky's World at War challenge under the category, 'A book focussed on The War'. It also qualifies for Bev's Calendar of Crime challenge under the July category of 'Primary action takes place in this month'.
I can see why the BLCC have reissued a handful of Michael Gilbert's books. This one was very nicely written and gave a very good flavour of life in a POW camp. The boredom, the desire to escape, desperation in some cases, the claustrophobia, the way in which certain people get on everyone's nerves, the sacrifices that are sometimes essential, and the ingenuity of the inmates to find a way to do impossible things. I found it all fascinating. I had no idea who had done the deed or why until the very end. There was also a nice twist at the end which I didn't guess at all. Plus, I really did enjoy the travelling aspect of this towards the end, it reminded me of Eric Newby's similar journey in Love and War in the Apennines, one of my all-time favourite books. Now looking forward to reading more of Michael Gilbert's work.