About Me

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Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada
I am a lawyer in Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada who enjoys reading, especially mysteries. Since 2000 I have been writing personal book reviews. This blog includes my reviews, information on and interviews with authors and descriptions of mystery bookstores I have visited. I strive to review all Saskatchewan mysteries. Other Canadian mysteries are listed under the Rest of Canada. As a lawyer I am always interested in legal mysteries. I have a separate page for legal mysteries. Occasionally my reviews of legal mysteries comment on the legal reality of the mystery. You can follow the progression of my favourite authors with up to 15 reviews. Each year I select my favourites in "Bill's Best of ----". As well as current reviews I am posting reviews from 2000 to 2011. Below my most recent couple of posts are the posts of Saskatchewan mysteries I have reviewed alphabetically by author. If you only want a sentence or two description of the book and my recommendation when deciding whether to read the book look at the bold portion of the review. If you would like to email me the link to my email is on the profile page.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

10th Canadian Book Challenge Half-Way

The Canadian Book Challenge is hosted annually by John Mutford at the Book Mine Set Blog. It runs annually from July 1 (Canada Day) through June 30. Participants strive to read and review 13 books written by Canadian authors during the 12 months. The end of December marked the half-way point in the 10th Challenge.

(The logo for the Challenge changes each year. I consider the logo to the above to be one of the best.)

The Challenge is going better for me this year than most years. Last year in March I had read 9 books for the Challenge. As of the end of 2016 I had already read 9 books. Within the next couple of weeks I will have completed another 3 books. It may be the earliest year I will have reached the 13 books for a successful Challenge.

The books I have read for the Challenge to date are:

1.) Open Season by Peter Kirby;

2.) A Red Herring Without Mustard by Alan Bradley;

3.) The Scottish Banker of Surabaya by Ian Hamilton;

4.) A Great Reckoning by Louise Penny - The Academy and Comparisons and The Map

5.) A Candle to Light the Sun by Patricia Blondal and Patricia Blondal

6.) Jack - A Life with Writers by James King

7.) Invisible Dead by Sam Wiebe

8.) Safe at Home by Alison Gordon

9.) Set Free by Anthony Bidulka

With 3 of them, A Great Reckoning, A Candle to Light the Sun and Jack - A Life with Writers, being on my Best Lists of 2016 the Challenge has had excellent reading.

Out of the remaining 6 books Set Free was my favourite read. Anthony has written an intriguing thriller.

What I just recognized is that out of the 8 works of Canadian fiction I have only read 2 new authors. I need to be more open to reading Canadian writers I have not read previously. I am going to have to head over to the Crime Writers of Canada to look up some "new to me" Canadian mystery writers.


  1. You're making a great progress in meeting this challenge, Bill. And I'm very glad for you that you've had some very good reads. I'll be looking forward to the rest of your reads for this challenge.

    1. Margot: Thanks for the comment. Years vary in reading progress. This has been a good year for meeting the challenge.

  2. Great stuff Bill. I'm a big fan of Canadian crime fiction, but haven't read as much as usual in the past year, just SNOW JOB by William Deverell. Might have to up my Canadian quotient the next few months

    1. Craig: Thanks for the comment. I remember your interest in Deverell and your interview with him. I look forward to your reading return to Canada.