Can't resist a good challenge.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Vintage Mystery Reading Challenge 2013: Scattergories


**Challenge complete (sort of). See my wrap-up post HERE.**

Dates: 1 January - 31 December, 2013
Hosted by: Bev @ My Reader's Block

Guidelines:
  • Read at least 8 books from 8 different categories
  • All books must have been originally written before 1960 and be from the mystery category (crime fiction, detective fiction, espionage, etc.). 
  • Short story collections are OK so long as all the stories included were originally written pre-1960. 
  • Each book may count for only one category. 
  • Books may count towards any other challenges. 
  • Challenge runs from January 1, 2013 to December 31, 2013. Sign up any time between now and November 30, 2013. Any books read from January 1 on may count regardless of your sign-up date. 
  • Reviews are not required. 
  • Once you have met the 8 book minimum, you may repeat any category (except the last one) any number of times to reach the 16+ level. 
  • There will be a site for reviews/progress reports. 
  •  Mini-Challenge Level--for those who would like to participate at a lower commitment. Choose any 4 categories for a commitment of 4 books. Challengers who complete this level will be eligible for a separate year-end prize drawing.
 Categories:
  1. Colorful Crime: a book with a color or reference to color in the title 
  2. Murder by the Numbers: a book with a number, quantity in the title 
  3. Amateur Night: a book with a "detective" who is not a P.I.; Police Officer; Official Investigator (Nurse Keate, Father Brown, Miss Marple, etc.) 
  4. Leave It to the Professionals: a book featuring cops, private eyes, secret service, professional spies, etc. 
  5. Jolly Old England: one mystery set in Britain 
  6. Yankee Doodle Dandy: one mystery set in the United States 
  7. World Traveler: one mystery set in any country except the US or Britain 
  8. Dangerous Beasts: a book with an animal in the title (The Case of the Grinning Gorilla; The Canary Murder Case; etc.) 
  9. A Calendar of Crime: a mystery with a date/holiday/year/month/etc. in the title (Hercule Poirot's Christmas, Holiday Homicide, etc.) 
  10. Wicked Women: a book with a woman in the title--either by name (Mrs. McGinty's Dead) or by reference (The Case of the Vagabound Virgin) 
  11. Malicious Men: a book with a man in the title--either by name (Maigret & the Yellow Dog) or by reference (The Case of the Haunted Husband) 
  12. Murderous Methods : a book with a means of death in the title (The Noose, 5 Bullets, Deadly Nightshade, etc). 
  13. Staging the Crime: a mystery set in the entertainment world (the theater, musical event, a pageant, Hollywood, featuring a magician, etc) 
  14. Scene of the Crime: a book with the location of the crime in the title (The Body in the Library, Murder at the Vicarage, etc.) 
  15. Cops & Robbers: a book that features a theft rather than murder 
  16. Locked Rooms: a locked-room mystery 
  17. Country House Criminals: a standard (or not-so-standard) Golden Age country house murder
  18. Murder on the High Seas: a mystery involving water 
  19. Planes, Trains & Automobiles: a mystery that involves a mode of transportation in a vital way--explicitly in the title (Murder on the Orient Express) or by implication (Death in the Air; Death Under Sail) or perhaps the victim was shoved under a bus.... 
  20. Murder Is Academic: a mystery involving a scholar, teacher, librarian, etc. OR set at a school, university, library, etc. 
  21. Things That Go Bump in the Night: a mystery with something spooky, creepy, gothic in the title (The Skeleton in the Clock, Haunted Lady, The Bat, etc.) 
  22. Repeat Offenders: a mystery featuring your favorite series detective or by your favorite author (the books/authors you'd read over and over again) OR reread an old favorite 
  23. The Butler Did It...Or Not: a mystery where the butler is the victim, the sleuth....(gasp) the criminal....or is just downright memorable for whatever reason. 
  24. A Mystery By Any Other Name: any book that has been published under more than one title (Murder Is Easy--aka Easy to Kill [Christie]; Fog of Doubt--aka London Particular [Christianna Brand], etc.) 
  25. Dynamic Duos: a mystery featuring a detective team--Holmes & Watson, Pam & Jerry North, Wolfe & Goodwin, or....a little-known team that you introduce to us. 
  26. Size Matters: a book with a size or measurement in the title (Death Has a Small Voice, The Big Four, The Weight of the Evidence, etc.) 
  27. Psychic Phenomena: a mystery featuring a seance, medium, hypnotism, or other psychic or "supernatural" characters/events 
  28. Book to Movie: one vintage mystery that has appeared on screen (feature film or TV movie). 
  29. The Old Bailey: a courtroom drama mystery (Perry Mason, anyone? Witness for the Prosecution...etc.) OR a mystery featuring a judge, lawyer, barrister, D.A., etc. 
  30. Get Out of Jail Free: This is a freebie category. One per customer. 

See my original post about the challenge here.
See my challenge wrap-up post here
See the Challenge Announcement page here.
See the review site here.

MY READING LIST (with links to reviews):
  1. Fer-de-Lance. Rex Stout (first published 1934)
    ~ Since this is the first book in Stout's Nero Wolfe/Archie Goodwin series, it's definitely in the "Dynamic Duo" category (Category #25).
  2. Evil Under the Sun. Agatha Christie (first published 1941)
    ~ I loved the film with Peter Ustinov, Maggie Smith, and Diana Rigg. How have I neglected to read the book all these years? Category #28 (Book to Movie)

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