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Reading Slothfully

I was told in elementary school that I only could read at half the speed for success in college. Oh well, one benefit of slow reading is you get to live with the characters a longer period of time. I read in a vain attempt to better understand people. At my other homes, I'm known as a spouse, pop, guy in the choir, physical chemist, computer/web dilettante and child-care provider. In theory, I'm a published author, if you consider stuff like Quenching Cross Sections for Electronic Energy Transfer Reactions Between Metastable Argon Atoms and Noble Gases and Small Molecules to count as publications. I've strewn dozens of such fascinating things to the winds.

Currently reading

A Christmas Carol
Charles Dickens
The Way Some People Die
Ross Macdonald
Envy of Angels
Matt Wallace
The Fellowship of the Frog
Edgar Wallace
Code of Conduct (The Jani Kilian Chronicles Book 1)
Kristine Smith
A Good Death
Christopher R. Cox
The Black Cargo
John P. Marquand
A Highland Christmas
M.C. Beaton
Tales from Moominvalley
Tove Jansson, Thomas Warburton
Moominland Midwinter
Tove Jansson, Thomas Warburton

The American Gun Mystery

The American Gun Mystery - Ellery Queen Back when I was a kid, Ellery Queen was all the rage. So I figured I should check him out. I dunno, this didn't do much for me. The main character is an idler who thinks he's better than everyone else because he doesn't appear to have to work for a living, and because he's able to do arcane feats of logical thinking. But with all the logical thinking, this story didn't much hold together or make sense. So, a stupid story with an unlikeable protagonist doesn't entice me to continue reading Queen.

The story revolves around a faded matinee idol from old cowboy movies, Buck Horne, who is taking a turn at Wild Bill Grant's wild west show in a huge arena in New York City. Buck appears to have been shot dead during one rip-roaring run around the arena. He was shot by a .25 caliber bullet, but all the people in the show, and all the people in the audience were carrying only .45s. Something like that. After a few weeks of investigation, the show starts up again, this time featuring another idol of the old oaters, one-armed Woody. Well, same rip-roaring ride around the arena and Woody gets toppled at the same point in the same fashion. So we have lots of red herrings and overdoses of smug pomposity by Ellery Queen, the main character. The final verdict only vaguely hangs true.

If I could give +s or -s, this book would be ***-. It's not terrible, but it isn't really much worth anyone's time. I won't likely revisit Ellery Queen any time soon.