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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

New On My Shelf This Week

I am really looking forward to reading this, my 14th Goodreads Giveaway competition win and the debut novel in a six part series, so I can get in right from the beginning and not need to play my usual game of catch-up.

The Grantchester Mysteries are moral fables in the tradition of G.K. Chesterton’s Father Brown mixing crime, comedy and social history. The series is set in the Cambridgeshire village of Grantchester (yes, this is a real place) and runs from 1953 – 1977 and as the son of a clergyman, it is not difficult to work out where James got the inspiration for the series from.


Sidney Chambers, the Vicar of Grantchester, is a thirty-two-year-old clergyman with a difference: he is also a reluctant detective. Together with his roguish friend Inspector Geordie Keating, Sidney stumbles across a series of baffling cases: the suspect suicide of a Cambridge solicitor; a scandalous jewellery theft at a New Year’s Eve dinner party; the unexplained death of a well-known jazz promoter’s daughter; and a shocking art forgery, the disclosure of which puts a close friend in danger. Sidney discovers that being a detective, like being a clergyman, means that you are never off duty…


Image Of Author James Runcie

James Runcie is a writer, director and literary curator. He is the author of The Grantchester Mysteries, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, Visiting Professor at Bath Spa University, and the Commissioning Editor for Arts at BBC Radio 4.

He was born in 1959, the son of Robert Runcie, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, and Rosalind Runcie. Educated at Marlborough College, Cambridge University and Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, he was a founder member of The Late Show, and made documentary films for the BBC for fifteen years. He then went freelance to make programmes for Channel 4 and ITV. He was Artistic Director of the Bath Literature Festival from 2010-2013, and Head of Literature at the Southbank Centre in London from 2013-2015.

James’s sleuth novels have been adapted as an ITV drama titled Grantchester. Filmed on location in Grantchester, Cambridge and London, the initial six-part series was shown in the UK in Autumn 2014. A second series was shown in Spring 2016 and a third series is planned for 2017.

James Runcie lives in Edinburgh and London and is married to Marilyn Elsie Imrie, a Scottish radio drama director and producer.

Check out all James’s latest news at his website

Follow James on Twitter

Connect with James on Facebook

Don’t write to impress. Write to entertain.

You can’t always enjoy writing. But you can enjoy having written.

Picture of an English red post boxMailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house during the last week. Be warned that Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

Mailbox Monday now has a permanent home, where links may be added each week. So why not stop by, leave a link to your own Mailbox Monday post, oh! and don’t forget to leave a comment for our three new joint administrators, after all, we all like to receive them … Your Hosts for  ‘Mailbox Monday’

Leslie of ‘Under My Apple Tree’

Serena of ‘Savvy Verse & Wit’

Martha of ‘Reviews By Martha’s Bookshelf’

This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… You never know where that next “must read” book will come from!

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I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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  • My first thought was no, no…. I don’t need to start a six-part series. Then I read on.

    This sounds like a wonderful book and one I think I’d enjoy very much. Congratulations on your win and I look forward to hearing more about this in future posts (perhaps Teaser Tuesday or Book Beginnings?).

    • Hi Kelly,

      No thrills and spills here, just a good old fashioned murder / mystery, slowing the pace is so good every once in a while.

      James sounds like such an interesting person, however I do wonder exactly how well his father, the Archbishop of Canterbury, took the news that his son was writing a series of books featuring a clergyman as an amateur sleuth, especially when the books were also adapted for television!

      I shall definitely be sharing excerpts from the book, at a later date, although I am still searching for an alternative to Teaser Tuesday, which is closing permanently at Christmas.

      Thanks for stopping by and have a great week 🙂

      • Oh, I bet he took the news well. 😉

        One of my favorite mystery series was the Brother Cadfael series by Ellis Peters. (some of those were on TV, too, with Derek Jacobi as Cadfael) I remember I was so sad when she (Edith Pargeter, aka Ellis Peters) died, know that was the death of Brother Cadfael, as well.

        I will definitely be keeping an eye out for these.

        • I have only read a couple of the ‘Brother Cadfael’ series, but if ‘The Grantchester Mysteries’ series turns out to be as good as I anticipate, then I quite like the idea of turning to this more ‘genteel’ murder / mystery genre for a while.

          I don’t know if you have come across the series which author James Runcie refers to in his biography, that of ‘Father Brown’ by G.K. Chesterton. This is another classic author I have sadly neglected, but one which I now have a renewed interest in reading ..



          • Oh, yes. I’ve admired snippets and quotes I’ve read here and there from Chesterton’s other writings and added the entire Father Brown collection to my Kindle some time ago. You’ve inspired me to queue it up on my device to perhaps begin reading during the coming year. (that cloud very deceptively makes us think we don’t have nearly as large a TBR pile as we do!!)

    • Hi Mary Ann,

      Being a little more ‘fussy’ about the entries I now make for the Goodreads Giveaways, makes the winning that much sweeter, as I am really looking forward to reading the book.

      I am always amazed that out of the many thousands of members who enter the competitions daily, my name has come up quite so often, but I’m definitely not complaining!

      I think this is one “first in a series” book, which is going to have me hooked on a character enough to read all the installments.

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by, I always appreciate your visits 🙂

    • Hi Kathy,

      I’m also quite intrigued by the prospect of a ‘roguish’ friend, who just happens to be a police Inspector. It will be interesting to see what picture the word conjures up in 1950s England, which is the time-line for this first story in the series.

      Thanks for stopping by, I always look forward to reading your comments 🙂

    • Hi Elizabeth,

      Any kind of murder / mystery / thriller, is sure to find a place on my reading list without question. Whether it be the rather harder-hitting storylines the modern market tastes demand, or the slightly more traditional ‘whodunnits’ of a bygone era. The pace of the crime depends entirely on my mood, but all are equally certain to keep me entertained!

      I hope that all is well with you and thanks for stopping by 🙂

Written by Yvonne