Welcome to the libraries’ News Blog! Here you’ll find reviews of new books, information about what’s happening at our libraries, and any breaking author news. We’ll also keep you up to date with exciting book award shortlists and prize announcements as they come to us, so check back often!

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Borrow audiobooks on CD and save

Audiobooks Free to borrow on CDIn October audiobooks on CD will be free to borrow from the Central library or any branch. This includes audiobooks on CD for adults, young adults, and children. This applies only to the issue fee, not any other related fees e.g. overdues.
Take advantage of this special offer to grab a classic or recent novel to listen while you work or exercise.


Vinyl talk now available for streaming

Exciting news! Our fantastic panel talk from Saturday’s vinyl launch party, featuring Grant Smithies, Liz Matthews, Lisa Brown and Nick Bollinger, is now available to stream on SoundCloud. We’ve split it into two segments for ease of listening. Check them out below or over at SoundCloud.

In part 1, our panel discuss topics such as:
* What’s all the fuss about vinyl anyway?
* The vinyl revival – why did it ever leave?
* Weird and unusual reocrds
* Vinyl care how-tos and no-nos
and heaps more!

In part 2, our panel answer some questions from the audience including:
*How to clean dirty and grubby records
*Dealing with scratches and damage
*Personal favourites and reliable go-to albums

Sound & Vision: New CDs

Check out some of these newly catalogued CDs in our AV collection. To reserve these items click on the title link below, and to find out a bit more about them click on the cover images…

Jack White Acoustic recordings 1998-2016
Shayne Carter Offsider

cover imagecover imagecover image

Book Quote of the Day

Hand lettering is on trend at the moment. Nothing better than bringing together quotes from books and this amazing form of art.


We have Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert in our catalogues in all possible versions - as an eBookeAudio and the movie as well.

If you like crafts, as we do, you should try some hand lettering. We have some books on calligraphy and hand lettering that can help you:

Syndetics book coverHand-lettering ledger / Mary Kate McDevitt.
“The ultimate tool for designers and creatives looking to tap into the trend of hand-drawn lettering, this workbook features step-by-step lessons on a range of styles plus more than 120 practice pages, making it the ideal place to learn and perfect this in-demand design skill.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAdventures in lettering / Dawn Nicole Warnaar.
“The ultimate hand-lettering workshop for young creatives!
Taught by the popular and skilled hand-lettering artist Dawn Nicole Warnaar, Adventures in Lettering combines creative self-expression and beautiful designs for an exploration of various lettering exercises. This hand-lettering workbook features hand-lettering lessons for beginners, from playing with style and brush calligraphy basics to illustrated hand-lettered designs and lettering styles. Once you’ve mastered the basic techniques, apply them to additional crafts and projects. Adventures in Lettering is the ultimate workshop to get started in the art of hand-lettering!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMastering calligraphy : the complete guide to hand lettering / by Gaye Godfrey-Nicholls.
“The centuries-old art of calligraphy has rarely witnessed a more diverse and prolific explosion of new work than in today’s hand-lettering revival.Mastering the Art of Calligraphy is the most comprehensive and up-to-date volume on this traditional craft and its contemporary practice. Brimming with both practical instruction and more than 700 inspirational photos, this is the definitive new guide for both serious calligraphers and budding hand-lettering enthusiasts. Inside are step-by-step instructions accompanied by examples of current work, plus historical information, artist profiles, troubleshooting tips, and an extensive resource section. Perfect for students, artists, professionals, and hobbyists, this is a tremendously valuable addition to any arts library.” (Syndetics summary)

There is a buzz at the Central Library

September is Bee Aware Month and Wellington City Libraries is excited to announce a very special project that will bring a buzz to Civic Square. We wanted to do our bit to help the bee population and the invaluable work those little insects do to  contribute to our food chain. The large empty space on our rooftop seemed like an obvious place to set up some beehives.

IMG_7933After months of preparation, there was a hive of activity on the Central Library’s rooftop recently when Sarah Adams, Urban Agriculture Advisor for Wellington City Council and Cenna Lloyd, professional beekeeper from Local Flavour Urban Honey Company joined us to make space for bees that will be calling our vast roof space home in the next few weeks.

It was an exercise in preparing a welcoming and safe home for the bees that will be introduced to their new home later this Spring, once the weather is warmer and more settled.

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The hives will be sitting on a pallet that was carried up the stairs and secured to the railings. Cenna arrived with a whole bunch of bee friendly plants which we placed in a few planters around the beehive space to provide a local source of pollen.

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We are now ready for the bees and the good weather!


If you are thinking of setting up a beehive of your own in your backyard or rooftop, here are a few titles to get you started.

Syndetics book coverThe rooftop beekeeper : a scrappy guide to keeping urban honeybees
“The number of urban beekeepers has escalated with more than 25 percent increases year over year in the United States and the United Kingdom. From a go-to authority on beekeeping and backyard farming the Rooftop Beekeeper is the first handbook to explore the ease and charm of keeping bees in an urban environment. Covering all aspects of urban beekeeping, this book also provides readers with plenty of sweet recipes for delicious treats, tonics, and beauty products to make with home-harvested honey.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverBetter beekeeping : the ultimate guide to keeping stronger colonies and healthier, more productive bees
“This book takes serious beekeepers past the beginning stages and learning curves and offers solutions and rewards for keeping bees a better way. Better queens, better winters, better food, and better bees await any beekeeper willing to take on the challenge of having the right number of bees, of the right age, in the right place, in the right condition, at the right time.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverVictory gardens for bees : a DIY guide to saving the bees
“This book investigates the growing problem of bee mortality and offers practical measures we can all take to help. In ecological terms, bees play a critical role in the survival of many plant communities and the continuation of life on this planet. Now that bees are facing unprecedented levels of die-off caused by a toxic mixture of environmental stresses, a community-based effort is needed to make gardens, fields and landscapes healthy sanctuaries for bees. Victory Gardens for Bees is also buzzing with DIY projects that will provide nesting sites and essential supplies for precious pollinators.”(Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverSave the bees with natural backyard hives : the easy and treatment-free way to attract and keep healthy bees
“The husband-and-wife team behind the nonprofit HoneyLove make the case that beekeeping ought to be treated as more than a hobby or money-making enterprise. It is an entrance into a complex and sometimes fierce world that must be engaged and understood on its own terms.”(Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverKeeping bees and making honey / Alison Benjamin and Brian McCallum.
“You don’t need acres of secluded gardens to be able to keep bees–hives can be found on many an urban rooftop, inner-city balcony or mounted on walls in the strangest of places. Keeping Bees and Making Honey covers everything you need to consider before you set up your colony. Packed with images, information, practical advice, recipes and gardening tips, Keeping Bees and Making Honey is the ideal companion for every aspiring beekeeper.” (Syndetics)

Bloomsbury South – Recent Literature picks

“Bloomsbury South” is the appellation given by the authors to the Christchurch of the two decades between 1933 and 1953, a time of unique fusion between artists, writers, musicians, the establishment of a new new literary magazines and a specialist printing press. A true flowering of the arts in the antipodes. Also making waves this month is a new collection of essays entitled Extraordinary Anywhere. Read these lovely books and be a proud Kiwi.

Syndetics book coverBloomsbury South : the arts in Christchurch, 1933-1953 / Peter Simpson.
“For two decades in Christchurch, New Zealand, a cast of extraordinary men and women remade the arts. Variously between 1933 and 1953, Christchurch was the home of Angus and Bensemann and McCahon, Curnow and Glover and Baxter, the Group, the Caxton Press and the Little Theatre, Landfall and Tomorrow, Ngaio Marsh and Douglas Lilburn. It was a city in which painters lived with writers, writers promoted musicians, in which the arts and artists from different forms were deeply intertwined.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTumult and tears : the story of the Great War through the eyes and lives of its women poets / Vivien Newman.
“During the First World War and its immediate aftermath, hundreds of women wrote thousands of poems on multiple themes and for many different purposes. Women’s poetry was published, sold (sometimes to raise funds for charities as diverse as ‘Beef Tea for Troops’ or ‘The Blue Cross Fund for Warhorses’), read, preserved, awarded prizes and often critically acclaimed. Tumult and Tears will demonstrate how women’s war poetry, like that of their male counterparts, was largely based upon their day-to-day lives and contemporary beliefs.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe prose factory : literary life in England since 1918 / D. J. Taylor.
“Gossipy journalists, revolutionary poets, political novelists and influential professors: take a tour of twentieth century literary culture. The book DJ Taylor was born to write: award-winning literary biographer (won Whitbread Prize for biography of George Orwell), esteemed journalist and novelist (longlisted for Booker for Derby Day) is the expert on 20th century literary culture: he’s lived and worked through half of it! Insight into our world: shines a light on readers, writers, publishers, booksellers and magazine editors – and holds them up for scrutiny.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverOn cats / Charles Bukowski ; edited by Abel Debritto.
“A raw and tenderly funny look at the human-cat relationship, from one of our most treasured and transgressive writers. “The cat is the beautiful devil.” Felines touched a vulnerable spot in Charles Bukowski’s crusty soul. For the writer, there was something majestic and elemental about these inscrutable creatures he admired, sentient beings whose searing gaze could penetrate deep into our being. Bukowski considered cats to be unique forces of nature, elusive emissaries of beauty and love.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSalt river songs / Sam Hunt.
Salt River Songs is Sam Hunt’s latest collection of poems, written over the last few years in his house that sits amongst a grove of totara trees on the Arapaoa, one of the five main salt rivers of the Kaipara Harbour. As always, his unflinchingly honest, elegiac and moving poems roam around familiar themes of family, friends and lovers, and the challenges of ageing and mortality. Salt River Songs will also have an introduction from writer and journalist Colin Hogg, an old friend of Sam’s and, appropriately, will be published to mark Sam’s 70th birthday.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWhile wandering : words on walking / edited and with an introduction by Duncan Minshull ; foreword by Robert Macfarlane.
“An anthology of literary walks–from Austen, Woolf, and Bronte to Colm Toibin, Bruce Chatwin, and Werner Herzog. This is the ultimate companion for readersnbsp;and walkers looking to take inspiration from poems, novels, plays, and journals. Walking is a fundamental act, often taken for granted, yet through the centuries it has inspired a fascinating literature. This, the first comprehensive anthology on the subject, delves into why we walk and how we walk, the differences between the country hike and the city stroll, walking and wooing, walking into trouble and marching out.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverExtraordinary anywhere : essays on place from Aotearoa New Zealand / editors Ingrid Horrocks & Cherie Lacey.
“This collection of personal essays, a first of its kind, re-imagines the idea of place for an emerging generation of readers and writers. It offers glimpses into where we are now and how that feels, and opens up the range and kinds of stories we can conceive of telling about living here. Contributors include Tony Ballantyne, Sally Blundell, Alex Calder, Annabel Cooper, Tim Corballis, Martin Edmond, Ingrid Horrocks, Lynn Jenner, Cherie Lacey, Tina Makereti, Harry Ricketts, Jack Ross, Alice Te Punga Somerville, Giovanni Tiso, Ian Wedde, Lydia Wevers, and Ashleigh Young.” (Syndetics summary).

Syndetics book coverThe private life of the diary : from Pepys to tweets / Sally Bayley.
“Diaries keep secrets, harbouring our fantasies and fictional histories. They are substitute boyfriends, girlfriends, spouses and friends. But in this age of social media, the role of the diary as a private confidante has been replaced by a culture of public self-disclosure. The Private Life of the Diary: from Pepys to Tweets is an elegantly-told story of the evolution – and perhaps death – of the diary.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSix facets of light / Ann Wroe.
“Meditiations on the mystery of light. Goethe claimed to know what light was. Galileo and Einstein both confessed they didn’t. On the essential nature of light, and how it operates, the scientific jury is still out. There is still time, therefore, to listen to painters and poets on the subject. They, after all, spend their lives pursuing light and trying to tie it down. Six Facets of Light is a series of meditations on this most elusive and alluring feature of human life.” (Syndetics summary)

And a good one in another part of the library:

Syndetics book coverSavoir faire : 1000+ foreign words & phrases you should know to sound smart / Laura Lee.
“Add hundreds of foreign phrases to your daily lexicon and learn about their quirky, fascinating origins! Some foreign phrases are so good they become a sort of lingua franca. They capture the true zeitgeist, where the English translation is just comme ci, comme ca. If you’re a linguistics geek or language lover with a curiosity about the origins of the foreign phrases, you need this book on your shelf.” (Syndetics summary)

Vinyl now available for lending!

Vinyl, records, LP’s – they’re all the same thing, produce great sound, are once again in high demand and now, Wellington City Libraries is lending them out!

Wellington Vinyl

Vinyl is now available to borrow from the Central library, covering Popular, Soul, Electronica New Zealand, Wellington genres and more at the reasonable price of $1.00 for seven days.

Take your borrowed vinyl home and then return titles to the library in our convenient cardboard satchels.


You can reserve vinyl using our catalogue, by searching for titles with call number ’vinyl,’ – click reserve and have them delivered to your local branch.

We’ll be adding new release, re-issues and deluxe titles every week, so keep an eye on our display spaces in the Central library’s Sound and Vision area.


Monty’s top vinyl picks

Monty is the library’s music selector, so he sees everything that ends up on our shelves. He also instigated the revival of the library’s vinyl collection, so it’s well worth taking note of his top picks from the collection.

Don’t forget to join us tomorrow for our launch party! Check out all the details here and you can be one of the first to borrow from our new vinyl collection.

Live at Carnegie HallBill Withers – Live at Carnegie hall
Bill is personable, cool and soulful at the helm of this 2LP live set from 1973. Songs like ‘Grandma’s Hands,’ and ‘Let me in your life’ are hopeful and touching, ‘I can’t write left handed’ political and angry and ‘Harlem’ and ‘Let us love,’ stomping R&B gospel with audience. An amazing live album from one of the best and housed in grand gatefold package.

After the Gold RushNeil Young – After the Gold Rush
Remember that distinctive LP cover, and Neil Young walking in trench coat past iron railings? Well, that image perfectly encapsulates the yearning heart of ‘After the gold rush.’ Songs like ‘Oh, lonesome me’ ‘Only love can break your heart,’ and ‘Don’t let it bring you down,’ distil the experience of breaking hearts into music. Ditties like ‘Till the morning comes’ and ‘Cripple creek fairy,’ break that spell a little and ‘Southern Man’ is thumping, angry and awesome.

TapestryCarole King – Tapestry
I can’t ignore Tapestry by Carole King. That LP lingered in almost every bed-sit, bedroom and lounge of suburban New Zealand, and helped herald the 70’s phenomenon of the singer songwriter. So, it’s doubly important as a kind of relic and touchstone, but is also filled with immaculate song-craft and mood.

If You're Feeling SinisterBelle & Sebastian - If you’re feeling sinister
The second release of Belle and Sebastian is full of distinctive, sophisticated pop and after their first album ‘Tigermilk,’ provides a real sense that they’re an especially talented, unique group. Title track, ‘If you’re feeling sinister’ characterises the ease with which they achieve atmosphere, lyrical poise and is superior, winning chamber pop. The cover image blows up a treat in LP too.

Abbey RoadThe Beatles – Abbey Road
My brother had a very large collection of vinyl and we would play Duran Duran, The Police and other 80’s records, but occasionally we ventured further into the dark past. At the back of his collection were the complete Beatles. Mysterious and in full colour – to browse all the covers, inserts and liner notes just made you more curious – the Beatles were changing before your eyes. I played the long, manic medley on side 2 of Abbey Road often, and it changed my (musical) life.

New non-fiction books in September

An eclectic mix this month, with something for everyone!

Syndetics book coverThe book : a cover-to-cover exploration of the most powerful object of our time / Keith Houston.
“From discussing papyrus to perfect binding, Houston (Shady Characters) takes readers on an exploration of the origins and evolution of the book. …a fascinating story enriched with descriptions of technical innovation, the curious experiments of printers and entrepreneurs, and a close examination of how the language, art, and science of bookmaking has developed (and in some cases remained the same) over centuries.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEasternisation : war and peace in the Asian century / Gideon Rachman.
“Easternisation is the defining trend of our age–the growing wealth of Asian nations is transforming the international balance of power. This shift to the East is shaping the lives of people all over the world, the fate of nations, and the great questions of war and peace. A troubled but rising China is now challenging America’s supremacy, and the ambitions of other Asian powers–including Japan, North Korea, India, and Pakistan–have the potential to shake the whole world. Meanwhile the West is struggling with economic malaise and political populism, the Arab world is in turmoil, and Russia longs to reclaim its status as a great power…” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverFrackopoly : the battle for the future of energy and the environment / Wenonah Hauter.
“Over the past decade a new and controversial energy extraction method known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has rocketed to the forefront of U.S. energy production. With fracking, millions of gallons of water, dangerous chemicals, and sand are injected under high pressure deep into the earth, fracturing hard rock to release oil and gas. Wenonah Hauter, one of the nation’s leading public interest advocates, argues that the rush to fracking is dangerous to the environment and treacherous to human health.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEngineers of jihad : the curious connection between violent extremism and education / Diego Gambetta and Steffen Hertog.
“The violent actions of a few extremists can alter the course of history, yet there persists a yawning gap between the potential impact of these individuals and what we understand about them. In Engineers of Jihad, Diego Gambetta and Steffen Hertog uncover two unexpected facts, which they imaginatively leverage to narrow that gap: they find that a disproportionate share of Islamist radicals come from an engineering background, and that Islamist and right-wing extremism have more in common than either does with left-wing extremism, in which engineers are absent while social scientists and humanities students are prominent.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWhy the future is workless / Tim Dunlop.
“In this timely and provocative book, Tim Dunlop argues that by embracing the changes ahead we might even find ourselves better off. Workless goes beyond the gadgetry and hype to examine the social and political ramifications of work throughout history and into the future. It argues we need to think big now, not wait until we’re in a dystopian world of mass unemployment and wealth held in the hands of a minority.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe kingdom of speech / Tom Wolfe.
“Tom Wolfe, whose legend began in journalism, takes us on an eye-opening journey that is sure to arouse widespread debate. The Kingdom of Speech is a captivating, paradigm-shifting argument that speech – not evolution – is responsible for humanity’s complex societies and achievements. From Alfred Russel Wallace, the Englishman who beat Darwin to the theory of natural selection but later renounced it, and through the controversial work of modern-day anthropologist Daniel Everett, who defies the current wisdom that language is hard-wired in humans, Wolfe examines the solemn, long-faced, laugh-out-loud zig-zags of Darwinism, old and Neo, and finds it irrelevant here in our Kingdom of Speech.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSixty : a diary of my sixty-first year : the beginning of the end, or the end of the beginning? / Ian Brown.
“As Ian Brown’s sixtieth birthday loomed, every moment seemed to present a choice: Confront, or deny, the biological fact that the end was now closer than the beginning. True, he was beginning to notice memory lapses, creaking knees, and a certain social invisibility–and yet, it troubled him that many people think of sixty as “old,” because he rarely felt older than at forty. An award-winning writer, Brown instead chose to notice every moment, try to understand it, capture it . . . all without panicking…” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe Panama papers : breaking the story of how the rich & powerful hide their money / Bastian Obermayer and Frederik Obermaier.
“Late one evening, investigative journalist Bastian Obermayer receives an anonymous message offering him access to secret data. Through encrypted channels, he then receives documents revealing how the president of Argentina has sequestered millions of dollars of state money for private use. This is just the beginning. Obermayer and fellow Süddeutsche journalist Frederik Obermaier find themselves immersed in the secret world where complex networks of letterbox companies help the super-rich to hide their money…” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverIn defense of housing : the politics of crisis / David Madden, Peter Marcuse.
“In every major city in the world there is a housing crisis. How did this happen and what can we do about it? …today our homes are being transformed into commodities, making the inequalities of the city ever more acute. Pro fit has become more important than social need. The poor are forced to pay more for worse housing. Communities are faced with the violence of displacement and gentrification. And the benefits of decent housing are only available for those who can afford it.” (adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverInvisible China : a journey through ethnic borderlands / Colin Legerton and Jacob Rawson.
“In this eye-opening adventure narrative, Colin Legerton and Jacob Rawson bring an unrevealed side of China to light. They journey to the farthest reaches of the country to engage in a heated discussion of human rights with Daur and Ewenki village cadres; celebrate Muhammad’s birthday with Dongxiang hajjis; and hike around Lugu Lake to farm with the matrilineal Mosuo women. These encounters with China’s hidden minorities reveal their complex position in Chinese society.” (Syndetics summary)

New Mystery Fiction for September

This month’s selection from the recently received new mystery novels are set in a wide variety of places, from Aosta, Italy to Blackasen, Finland. From Osaka, Japan to Kolkata, India, Normandy, France to Sweden. Experience some great mysteries in some wonderful places.

Syndetics book coverCrowned and dangerous / Rhys Bowen.
“Set in late 1934,this novel opens on the road to Gretna Green, Scotland, where distant heir to the British throne Lady Georgiana Rannoch and the Honorable Darcy O’Mara plan to elope. En route, Darcy learns that his father, Lord Kilhenny, is in custody for killing Timothy Roach, the wealthy American who bought Kilhenny Castle and the adjacent horse-racing stable. Lord Kilhenny argued with Roach, his fingerprints are on the murder weapon, and he drank too much on the evening in question to remember whether he’s guilty, so he’ll likely hang for the crime. To save Georgie from scandal, Darcy ends his engagement to her and returns home to County Kildare, Ireland.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverJourney under the midnight sun / Keigo Higashino ; translated by Alexander O. Smith, with Joseph Reeder.
“A twenty-year-old murder. A chain of unsolvable mysteries, can one detective solve this epic riddle? When a man is found murdered in an abandoned building in Osaka in 1973, unflappable detective Sasagaki is assigned to the case. He begins to piece together the connection of two young people who are inextricably linked to the crime; the dark, taciturn son of the victim and the unexpectedly captivating daughter of the main suspect. Over the next twenty years we follow their lives as Sasagaki pursues the case, which remains unsolved, to the point of obsession.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAdam’s rib / Antonio Manzini ; translated from the Italian by Antony Shugaar.
“Deputy Police Chief Rocco Schiavone has been demoted from the police force in his native Rome for beating up a rape suspect. He’s been reassigned to the town of Aosta in the Italian Alps. Schiavone is cut off from Rome, from his friends, and, most grievously, from his beloved, murdered wife. Schiavone’s lethargy is interrupted by a maid’s discovery of her female employer hanging from a light fixture. The scene and the condition of the woman’s body make Schiavone believe this is not, as was first believed, a suicide but rather a carefully staged murder.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverIn the month of the midnight sun / Cecilia Ekbäck.
“Stockholm 1856. A telegram arrives on the Minister of Justice’s desk, with the news of a massacre on one of Lapland’s mountains; a priest, a law enforcement officer, and a local settler have been slaughtered by one of the indigenous Sami people. The murderer is in custody; he refuses to talk. The Minister dispatches his son-in-law, a geologist, to investigate for there is more than one reason to visit Blackasen: it is a mountain with many secrets, a mountain that has never been mapped. Magnus does not journey alone. The Minister’s daughter, in disgrace, is sent with him. What they discover about the murders and what lies behind them will be as nothing compared with what they discover about themselves.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverA rising man / Abir Mukherjee.
“Captain Sam Wyndham, former Scotland Yard detective, is a new arrival to Calcutta. Desperately seeking a fresh start after his experiences during the Great War, Wyndham has been recruited to head up a new post in the police force. But with barely a moment to acclimatise to his new life or to deal with the ghosts that still haunt him, Wyndham is caught up in a murder investigation that will take him into the dark underbelly of the British Raj. With rising political dissent and the stability of the Raj under threat, Wyndham and his two new colleagues, arrogant Inspector Digby and British-educated, but Indian-born Sergeant Banerjee, one of the few Indians to be recruited into the new CID embark on an investigation that will take them from the luxurious parlours of wealthy British traders to the seedy opium dens of the city.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverA summer with Kim Novak / Håkan Nesser ; translated from the Swedish by Saskia Vogel.
“Fourteen-year old Erik and his friend Edmund spend their summer vacation in 1962 by a Swedish lake, daydreaming about Ewa, a young teacher who looks just like actress Kim Novak. When Ewa’s fiancé is found dead, Erik’s brother is the prime suspect at first, but the actual killer is never found. Twenty-five years later, when Erik happens to come across an article about unsolved crimes, he is overwhelmed by memories about that summer. What really happened back then? And why was Ewa’s fiance murdered?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWhen the music’s over : an Inspector Banks novel / Peter Robinson.
“Det. Insp. Annie Cabbot investigates the rape and murder of 15-year-old Mimosa “Mimsy” Moffat, a white girl found naked on a country road, who lived in the nearby estates in Wytherton, York, and ran with a crowd that included several older guys of Pakistani descent. Cabbot must tread carefully in the racially charged atmosphere during her investigation.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverRevolver / Duane Swierczynski.
“In 1965, Philadelphia police officer Stan Walczak and his partner are in a bar, taking a break from their duties managing street protests in a poor neighborhood, when someone enters with a gun, and both men are shot dead. In 1995, Stan’s son, Jim, a Philadelphia PD homicide detective, looks into the rape-murder of magazine fact checker Kelly Farrace, a case that attracts the interest of a City Hall eager for a quick resolution. In 2015, Jim’s daughter, Audrey Kornbluth, returns home from Houston to attend the unveiling of a plaque memorializing the 1965 slayings. Audrey’s on the verge of flunking out of Criminal Scene Investigator school, but she hits on the idea of reinvestigating the 50-year-old murders, a choice that not everyone in her family supports.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverA dreadful past / Peter Turnbull.
“Things are slow for Det. Chief Insp. George Hennessy and Det. Sgt. Somerled Yellich. Hennessy and his team have time to look at a case that’s not only cold but practically frostbitten: a 20-year-old murder of a couple and their 17-year-old daughter in an isolated house. Now the son, the sole survivor of the massacre, tells the police that he has found a damaged vase in an antique shop that was stolen from his family the night of the murders. Hennessy and company start to trace the vase and re-interview the victims’ neighbors for details they might not have told the police before.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverA climate of fear / Fred Vargas ; translated from the French by Siân Reynolds.
“A woman is found murdered in her bathtub, and the murder made to look like a suicide. A strange symbol is found near the body.Then a second victim is discovered, who was also part of a group of tourists on a doomed expedition to Iceland ten years earlier.How are these deaths, and rumours of an Icelandic demon, linked to the secretive Association for the Study of the Writings of Maximilien Robespierre? And what does the mysterious symbol signify? Commissaire Adamsberg is about to find out.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

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