Mystery Readers – This One’s For You!

Kindle Reading in Indonesia

Several weeks before I left on my trip to Indonesia, I spent a lot of time choosing books to load onto my Kindle.  I read book reviews, surfed lists on Amazon and read reader reviews on books that looked promising, and revisited favorite authors’ books.  I pulled out a file that I keep full of pages torn from magazines and newspapers that mention books that I think I might want to read and went back up to Amazon and started reading the synopsis of these titles and again, what the readers thought of these books.  When I’d find books that sounded like a good match for my tastes that were available for the Kindle, I’d purchase them and download them to my e-reader.  One thing that I did NOT want to do was to run out of things to read during the five weeks that I was going to be overseas.

The results were mixed.  Some of the books I chose turned out to be “so-so.”  Thankfully, those were in the minority.  Most of the ones I had loaded were entertaining and certainly helped me pass the hours after my son and his family would go to bed around 6:30 at night each evening.  There was one author in particular that I was delighted to discover.  Now when I say “discover”, I don’t mean that I personally discovered this author.  I mean that he was new to me as a reader.  Isn’t that a reader’s great delight….stumbling upon an author that you really enjoy?

If you enjoy reading mysteries, let me introduce you to the work of J. Michael Orenduff.  Mr. Orenduff has written three books so far (and I can’t wait for him to release his fourth, which I see is due out in March).  They are:  The Pot Thief Who Studied Pythagoras, The Pot Thief Who Studied Ptolemy, and The Pot Thief Who Studied Einstein.  The main character in these mysteries is Hubie Schuze, a dealer in Native American pottery who lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  Hubie is a bit of a rascal, who tends to bend the rules and the letter of the law when it suits him, but he’s a decent enough chap who has a knack for stumbling into mysteries and then solving them.  He also is laugh-out-loud witty (think combination Ricky Gervais and William Powell in “The Thin Man”), a connoisseur of Southwestern food, and someone that I, for one, would love to have as a best friend.

My daughter-in-law spent her early childhood in Mexico and developed quite a taste for Mexican food.  I, too, love Mexican cuisine.  As I read The Pot Thief Who Studied Pythagoras, I could have almost committed a crime myself for a good cheese enchilada.  Hubie’s description of his meals is mouthwatering.  If you’re not hungry when you start reading, you will be when you put the book down.  I told Laura, “You have to read these “Pot Thief” mysteries.  They’re not only great fun to read, but you can almost smell tortillas frying.”

I’ll tell you what I don’t like as a mystery reader.  I’m not a fan of “slice ’em and dice ’em” mysteries.  I don’t need to read page after page of gore and torture in intimate detail.  There’s enough of that in the real world.  I’m also not a big fan of the typical “cozy” mystery.  They’re a little too bland for me.  What I AM a fan of is a mystery that is intelligent, witty, highly entertaining, with some twists to keep me on my toes, some subject matter to teach me some things I don’t know, and a character or two that I like.  Mr. Orenduff  has delivered all of that in his “Pot Thief” mysteries. I highly recommend that you search his books out if you haven’t discovered them already.

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Hot Flashed Funk

  • I love a good mystery – one that is as you described. Agatha Christie is one of my favorites.

    I may just have to check the pot thief out!

  • Ha, ha…..when I read the title of the books I totally had a different idea until you gave a little description!

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