31 July 2009

Themed Reading Challenge: Wrap Up

Coming in just under the wire, I finished Wendy's (Caribousmom) Themed Reading Challenge for 2009.

The option I picked required that I read six books that share more than two themes.

Here are my themes (1) part of a mystery series, (2) woman author, (3) woman protagonist, and (4) protagonist operates out of the United States. Two bonuses: Each book took place in a different state and all were on audio!

Here are the books and authors (with protagonist and state) that I read. Click on the link for my review.

Curiosity Killed the Cat Sitter by Blaize Clement (Dixie Hemingway, Florida)
Cold Day for Murder by Dana Stabenow (Kate Shugak, Alaska)
Dead as a Doornail by Charlaine Harris (Sookie Stackhouse, Louisiana)
Death Qualified by Kate Wilhelm (Barbara Holloway, Oregon)
Rapture in Death by J. D. Robb (Eve Dallas, New York)
Delectable Mountains by Earlene Fowler (Benni Harper, California)

Generally speaking, this was a great batch of books. New to me were the Clement and Staebenow series, both of which I hope to revisit. Harris, Robb, and Fowler kept me going with old friends. I will likely not read more Wilhelm, or at least not more in the Barbara Holloway series.

Are you waiting for me to pick a favorite? It's nearly impossible. If you've read any of these books or read my reviews, then you know how different these series and protagonists are; they simply can't be compared.

To find out what other people read for Themed Reading 2009, check out the wrap-up posts at Caribousmom's blog. There were some clever and fun categories this year. Thanks so much for hosting, Wendy.

Do you read mysteries? Which series is your current favorite?


Julie P. 7/31/09, 8:30 AM  

I don't even know how to answer that question. It used to be Stephanie Plum books, but they've lost a little of their appeal. I still enjoy the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency books, but they wouldn't qualify for this challenge. I've only read one Sookie, but it was very fun. Maybe those books will be my new must-read mysteries!

Nicole (Linus's Blanket) 7/31/09, 8:37 AM  

I don't usually read a lot of series. I just read Wife of the Gods by Kwei Quartey for a blog tour and I really enjoyed that one. I would definitely read another Darko Dawson Mystery. So that might be the favorite by default.

Congrats on finishing up your challenge.

Margot 7/31/09, 8:55 AM  

Congratulations on completing your challenge. It certainly looks different based on all the criteria. I've enjoyed reading all your reviews for these. Series? I just finished 15 in the Stephanie Plum series and I've read a few of the J.D. Robb's. I've picked up a couple of new ones based on book blogger's recommendations but haven't started yet. I like to wait until I have them all.

Unknown 7/31/09, 9:21 AM  

Congratulations on finishing this challenge.

I too am struggling to chose a favourite series. I used to read a lot, but now only read the occasional one. I think I prefer one off books at the moment, but I love a good mystery!

Sandy Nawrot 7/31/09, 9:38 AM  

I am a huge sucker for mystery series, and if I were to challenge myself, I'm not sure I could list all of them I read. Too many to count!

Stacy 7/31/09, 10:50 AM  

Awesome...and you had so many common themes...very cool. I am so new to the mystery/cozy mystery genre, so I will have to try a couple on your list. My favorite series so far have been Miss Malory by Hazel Holt and the Sherlock Holmes books.

Darlene 7/31/09, 10:54 AM  

Congrats on finishing the challenge. I don't really think I read any mystery series although I guess the YA Pretty Little Liars books are a bit of a mystery. I'd love to start the Sue Grafton books one day though.

Amanda 7/31/09, 10:58 AM  

I think all of you wrapping up this challenge are far more impressive than me. I could only think of one theme, so I had to go with the lowest level. I couldn't find more than one theme to match 5 or 6 books...

Wendy 7/31/09, 11:12 AM  

Congratulations on completing the challenge, Beth...you had some great "connections" between such vastly different books! Glad you enjoyed them.

Re: mysteries...yes I read them, but I don't typically read series mysteries. I like some of the forensic mysteries...and Kathy Reich's and Patricia Cornwell's books (which I guess ARE series) are some of my favorites.

A.F. Heart 7/31/09, 11:40 AM  

The challenge sounds like a good idea.

Mystery series I love? I would have to say Madelyn Alt's Bewitching Mysteries, Dolores Stewart Riccio's The Circle Mysteries, Shirley Damsgaard's Ophelia & Abby Mysteries, Hailey Lind's Art Lover's Mysteries, Karen MacInerney's Gray Whale Inn Mysteries to name the top picks. All of these are great and I recommend them.

Beth F 7/31/09, 11:43 AM  

Thanks for the great suggestions. I have a bunch of new series and stand-alones to add to my wish list. Keep 'em coming!

bermudaonion 7/31/09, 12:21 PM  

I used to read a lot of mysteries, but haven't read any really good ones in a while. Congrats on completing the challenge.

Dorte H 7/31/09, 3:26 PM  

Yes, I read mystery series but pick ONE favourite? - no way.
Often I think the one I am currently reading is the best, but when I begin the next good book I think exactly the same.

Ana S. 7/31/09, 4:11 PM  

Congrats on finishing! Mystery is a genre I need to explore better.

Penny 8/1/09, 9:50 PM  

Way to go! I squeaked in under the wire with this challenge too.

I agree with Nymeth...mystery is a genre I need to get into more.
I look forward to all of your commenters' suggestions

tinylittlelibrarian 8/2/09, 2:40 AM  

Hey, good for you! You had it way harder than I did with my 4 books and single theme - way to go!

I've got to get on with Sookie Stackhouse. I've only read the first one...

Shonda 8/2/09, 10:31 AM  

Congrats on finishing! I too almost didn't finish. I read the last page Friday evening. I liked the theme I chose, so in the end, that's what really motivated me to complete this challenge.

Melody 8/2/09, 9:06 PM  

Congrats on completing the challenge, Beth! I need to read more mysteries!

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