Thursday, December 29, 2022

The Pale Criminal by Philip Kerr -- BOOK BEGINNINGS



How was your Christmas weekend? Merry, I hope! And I hope Santa brought you all the books you wished for. 

Please share the opening sentence (or so) from one of your new books with us here on Book Beginnings on Fridays. Or share from the book you are reading this week, or from a book that caught your fancy. 


"Just like a fucking cuckoo."

-- The Pale Criminal by Philip Kerr. 

Oh my! Excuse me. I didn't remember the opening sentence uses the f-word right off the bat like that. Like most litigation lawyers, I swear continuously. And I'm married to another litigator. So between the two of us, I'm so inured to profanity, I probably didn't even notice this opening sentence!

The Pale Criminal is the second book in Kerr's mystery series set in WWII-era Germany, featuring Bernie Gunther, a former police inspector turned private detective. I started it after Christmas since a hard-boiled crime book didn't strike me as how I wanted to commemorate the birth of my Lord. But this is one of the many, many series I want to tackle because the books have been lingering on my shelves and in the back of my mind for too long. 

I plan to move straight on to the next book in the Bernie Gunther series, which will count as my German book for the 2023 European Reading Challenge. If you want to join in and read books (of your own choosing) from different European countries, click through to the main challenge page for details. I've hosted the European Reading Challenge here on Rose City Reader for 11 years!


Please leave a link to your Book Beginnings post, not the main page of your blog. If you share on social media, please use the #bookbeginnings hashtag.

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blog event button for The Friday 56 on Freda's Voice


Another fun Friday event is The Friday 56. Share a two-sentence teaser from page 56 of your book, or 56% of the way through your e-book or audiobook, on this weekly event hosted by Freda at Freda's Voice.


From The Pale Criminal:
Reinhardt Lange’s letters were written on the heavier weight of paper that only people in love bother to buy – the kind that costs so much it has to be taken seriously. The hand was neat and fastidious, even careful, which was more than could be said of the contents.

2023 European Reading Challenge -- MY SIGN UP POST & WRAP UP POST



This is my sign up post for the 2023 European Reading Challenge. If you want to join me -- and I hope you do -- please go to the main challenge page, here. You will find details and a Linky box to add a link to your own sign up post. You can play along through your own blog, a social media profile, or just in the comments on the Challenge pages. Join us to take the Grand Tour of Europe in books!

2023 is the 11th year of the European Reading Challenge and the 11th year I am signing up for the Five Star (Deluxe Entourage) Level to read five books set in different European countries or written by authors from five different countries. I have not been good about reviewing the books I read, but that may change as things slow down a bit for me at work (knock wood) and I have a little more time to play with this blog. 


I haven't picked the books I am going to read for this challenge. The books in the photo above are some possibilities. As I read qualifying books, I will list them here. 

UPDATE: I finished the challenge by reading books set in 12 different European countries or written by authors from different countries. Four were books in translation, which is better than usual for me but I'd still like to read more books by non-American, UK, or Irish authors. 

1. The Big Four by Agatha Christie (UK)

2. A German Requiem by Philip Kerr (Germany)

3. Even the Dead by Benjamin Black (Ireland)

4. The Snowman by Jo Nesbo (Sweden)

5. The Red Notebook by Antoine Laurain (France)

6. April in Spain by John Banville (Spain)

7. The Cloister and the Hearth by Charles Reade (Holland)

8. Live Not by Lies: A Manual for Christian Dissidents by Rod Dreher (Czech Republic)

9. The Flight of the Falcon by Daphne du Maurier (Italy)

10. Quo Vadis by Henryk Sienkiewicz (Poland)

11. Scandinavian Noir: In Pursuit of a Mystery by Wendy Lesser (Norway)

12. War & Peace by Leo Tolstoy (Russia)

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