From Maureen Fitzpatrick:
Summers & Series
What’s better than finding one fantastic book? How about finding a series of them! A great series can be a tightly plotted trilogy, a multi-volume saga, or a set of books that only ends when the author or main character dies. When we discover a literary world where interesting characters in complex situations make choices that reflect the world where we live (or where we wish we lived), it is a joy to be able to move into that literary neighborhood for as long as the stories last.
And summer is arguably the best season to sit down and read or reread the stories of our favorite fictional characters and communities. For me, few things beat discovering a new favorite mystery series – one with a hyper-observant detective paired with a slightly-slower but well-meaning partner, a twisting plot that keeps me guessing, and a tone that carefully balances the gritty with the witty. Great detective series are being written around the globe: British-style cozies, hardboiled detective novels, and procedurals are being published in almost any country you can name.
A few great series I recommend:
The Emmanuel Cooper Mysteries (South Africa) by Malla Nunn (start with A Beautiful Place to Die)
Detective Kubu Mysteries (Botswana) by Michael Stanley (start with A Carrion Death)
Inspector Darko Dawson Mysteries (Ghana) by Kwei Quartey (start with Wife of the Gods)
The Karla Trilogy (United Kingdom by John LeCarre (start with Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy)
What series would you recommend others spend their summer with?
BTW—if you are interested in international mysteries, join us at Café Tempo for lunch at 1:00 on Thursday, June 21. Read any mystery from any country and come to talk about murder and mayhem.
These are from Gwen Ifill of Washington Week in Review; not all (but over half) political/historical–but things as diverse as The Hunger Games and The Paris Wife.