Thursday, January 8, 2015

A Baker's Dozen: Favourite Mystery Reads of 2014

Last Year, I read more than 80 books and of these more than 50 were mysteries. And now the time comes to make a list of my favourites. I have only included mysteries that I read for the first time in 2014 thus Christie's And Then There Were None (which I re-read for the umpteenth time) is not featured.

In ascending order then:

13. The Blaft Anthology of Tamil Pulp Fiction: Tamil is one of the classical languages of the world but this anthology showcases its 'pulpier' side.

12. Fire Past the Future by Charles Eric Maine.Eight scientist left on an island as the experiment reaches its last stages. And then the first body turns up...the countdown has truly begun.

11. The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz: Watson narrates the most scandalous case of Sherlock Holmes.

10. I'll Say She Does by Peter Cheyney: Lemmy Caution's last case has him looking for a woman who can make the devil look holy.

9. The Fourth Door by Paul Halter: The author pays homage to John Dickson Carr in this tale of a haunted room.

8. According to the Evidence by Henry Cecil: A humorous take at the anomalies between law and justice.

7. Green for Danger by Christianna Brand: Who would want to kill a postman at the time of the Blitz?

6. The Thin Man by Dashiell Hammett: Nick and Nora are excellent.

5. Journey into Fear by Eric Ambler: An ordinary man finds himself caught on the chessboard of international espionage.

4. The Blue Hammer by Ross Macdonald: A search for a painting turns into a search for lost fathers. Poignant because of a strong autobiographical undercurrent.

3. The Schirmer Inheritance by Eric Ambler. Some books leave you with a very satisfied feeling. This is one of those.

2. The Hand in the Dark by Arthur J. Rees: The find of the year.

1. The Burning Court by John Dickson Carr. A novel so exquisitely put together that for the timebeing, at least, it has replaced And Then There Were None as my all-time favourite mystery read.


Entry for FFB @ Pattinase

Submitted @ Mysteries in Paradiise

Part of my A Baker's Dozen series.


  1. I like your selection very much, Neeru. With Hammett, Brand, Carr and Macdonald, it's hard to go wrong...

    1. Thanks Margot. Ambler, Hammett, Carr are well deserving of their reputation but it is discovering authors like Charles Eric Maine and Arthur J. Rees that gives me the greater pleasure. :)


  2. I think you ought to know that you got me to buy a book! How's that for a switch? :^) I have a copy of FIRE PAST THE FUTURE headed my way via the magic of internet/mail order. Thanks for the review a few weeks ago on what promises to be a fascinating blend of sci-fi and mystery.

    1. As you say a Switch, John.:) I wish I could send the book to you.

      I wanted to write a long review of it but was short of time. Now I am eagerly awaiting your review of it.

  3. Neer, I will be looking into several of these. Tamil Pulp Fiction looks very interesting.

    1. Glad you discovered some new books Tracy. Tamil pulp was new to me too and I quite enjoyed it.

  4. "The House of Silk" sounds interesting. I will give that a try.

    1. Please do. Parul read it too and quite liked it. Now we await your verdict. :)

  5. Most interesting list, Neer. I've read the Eric Ambler books and THE THIN MAN and the Ross MacDonald books featuring Lou Archer and GREEN FOR DANGER. Terrific books. I LOVE Eric Ambler and Ross MacDonald especially.

    I'm adding THE HAND IN THE DARK to my TBR list.

    1. Thanks Yvette. I too love Ambler. MacDaonald, I have read only two but both have been good.

      Please do read THE HAND IN THE DARK. It's available for free download on many sites. It's humour will surely appeal to you.