I’m happy to have completed the expert level of the 2013 Global Reading Challenge: it was a challenging challenge, and I discovered some great books along the way. I read three books from each continent, and my wild card continent (to substitute for Antarctica) was for books that take place in more than one country. Without further ado, here is the list of books I reviewed for the challenge:
- The Power of Three by Laura Lippman (Maryland)
- A Cold and Lonely Place by Sara J. Henry (New York)
- Guilt by Jonathan Kellerman (California)
Central & South America
- Needle in a Haystack by Ernesto Mallo (Argentina)
- The Neruda Case by Roberto Ampuero (Chile)
- The Silence of the Rain by Luis Alfredo Garcia-Roza (Brazil)
- The Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths (England)
- Misterioso by Arne Dahl (Sweden)
- Total Chaos by Jean-Claude Izzo (France)
- Pale Horses by Jassy Mackenzie (South Africa)
- Deadly Harvest by Michael Stanley (Botswana)
- Black Star Nairobi by Mukoma Wa Ngugi (Kenya)
- Inspector Imanishi Investigates by Seichō Matsumoto (Japan)
- The Eye of Jade by Diane Wei Liang (China)
- Behind the Night Bazaar by Angela Savage (Thailand)
- Food of Ghosts by Marianne Wheelaghan (Kiribati)
- Frantic by Katherine Howell (Australia)
- The Mistake by Wendy James
Wild Card (Multiple countries in one book)
- The Name of a Bullfighter by Luis Sepúlveda (Chile, Germany)
- The Man Who Went Up in Smoke by Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö (Sweden, Czechoslovakia)
- The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri (US, India)
Now for a few observations about my reading:
- This challenge is great for getting me to try new authors from countries I don’t typically read about, but I think I need to take a step back for the coming year and read one book from each continent instead of trying to find translated books from three countries in each continent. I hope to spend more time reading more of the authors I’ve discovered this year instead of pushing for a large number of new-to-me authors in 2014.
- It’s difficult finding crime novels set in Asia that are translated into English from a multitude of countries. There are a few from Japan, but little elsewhere, or maybe I need to focus on lots of small presses or ebook only releases to find them. Africa was also difficult. I’m not sure how much of this is because of the lack of crime novels written in those countries and how much is related to what publishers decided to translate for the English-speaking market. I am thankful to my fellow challenge participants for suggesting so many interesting authors.
- My favorite books of the challenge were by Laura Lippman, Ernesto Mallo, Elly Griffiths, Angela Savage, and Jhumpa Lahiri.
Thanks to Kerrie at Mysteries in Paradise for hosting the challenge this year.