Saturday, September 16, 2023

Holiday Reading

When you’re on vacation, do you take a break from reading crime fiction, never mind writing it? Do you read at all?

Brenda at the keyboard.

I have to confess that I'm a crime fiction junkie. While I might detox with a more literary work from time to time, my go-to relaxation fare is always in the crime fiction genre. I always have a book on the go when I'm writing. My favourite thing to do is to write for a while, read a chapter of whatever book I'm currently reading, write some more. Repeat.

But this week's question asks if and what I read on vacation. I can confirm that I always have a book with me when on holiday, and it is invariably crime fiction or thriller. When I flew to Thunder Bay for a week to visit with family this past June, I took along The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz. My book club had picked Yellowface by Rebecca Kuang for its next selection, and after I finished reading it, my neighbour lent me The Plot, a book with a similar theme but with more thriller/murder mystery elements. I was half-way through, and so The Plot came along with me on my trip.

I used to enjoy reading Gail Bowen's Joanne Kilbourn mysteries when I travelled. They made for soothing reading, especially at the end of a long day when I was snuggled up in the motel bed. Joanne is a woman-next-door kind of protagonist with a big family and the series is set in Saskatchewan. Joanne solves murders but the family plot line is an important part of every book.

And then you can't beat a thriller by Harlan Coben, Rick Mofina or Linwood Barclay for lounging on a beach or sitting in a deck chair at a cottage. Fast-paced and engrossing all. 

The prerequisites for my vacation selection are that the book holds my interest, is light enough (subject-wise) for me to pick up and put down without losing my place in the story, and is well written. Luckily, the crime fiction selection is varied and plentiful. Other favourite 'holiday relaxation' authors include but are not limited to: Denise Mina, Ann Cleeves, Michael Connelly, Adrian McKinty, Mary Jane Maffini, Karen Slaughter, Deon Meyer ... and many more too numerous to mention.

All I need now is another holiday with a jaunt to my local bookshop before setting out....


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