Beyond The Challenge

The other day I passed St. Martin’s theatre; as I approached it from Covent Garden I was looking at the neon lights illuminating the title. It often reminds me to a woman’s story with whom I lived in 2001.

‘Did you see any musicals yet?’ She was my landlady and I was a student. ‘You ought to see The Mousetrap,’ she continued, her eyes searched mine. ‘The Mousetrap?’ I replied, feeling puzzled. ‘Yes, Agatha Christie’s,’ she shook her head.

She went on to tell me that on the day she was about to go into the premises a motorist was shouting at her, ‘it’s the ******!’ and zoomed off. She froze all of a sudden, feeling dismayed.

Fortunately it didn’t happen to me on the day I went on 29th December 2012. I halted my steps, recalling her tale and reflecting on the decision I made after I saw the longest-running play in West End. How about reading all her books in a year?  I understood little how prolific she was.

The Savoy hotel, London where Lady Edgware had a supper and conversed with Poirot in Lord Edgware Dies

   I  finished reading all her sixty-six crime stories and her short stories before 2013 was over. My eyes blinking from exhaustion having read and chased her books that had diminished from  the library shelves. I wanted no more to hear about her plots. In the end the many titles I had bought to keep up with the challenge became a source of amusement to my then little daughters while they were playing the tumbling tower game with the copies.

I knew not what to do with the blog afterwards, except that it had no gain financial reward. I re-read the reviews I’d written with haste and cringed at my scattering thoughts, misspellings and grammatical mistakes. A rewrite came to mind and yet the second thought got the better of me: I decided I would leave them as they were, so I could come back after some time to see see how far I had learnt.

My first pair of socks made in 2016

    As you may be aware, this blog isn’t updated on a regular basis. For a number of reasons: since the challenge finished I have picked up my knitting and crocheting needles; I have yarned some prose based on the chattering of the silver ladies in my knitting clubs and AC’s characters; I have discovered the delights of other crime writers’ works in 1930s and 1940s; I have been writing reviews for my writing group’s blog other than crime genre and I have been visiting places used as the setting in the books. If anything, the challenge has made me seen London and England in various ways.


Walking the Alban Way with a walking group in 2017 – during which I encountered a garden rest in memory of the deceased of the former Hill End asylum and learnt more about Marconi Instruments Limited

Thank you for following me and giving me your feedback. Also, your patience. I am grateful for your support and I realise I should return my gratitude to each of you – my readers. I am trying my best, although other bookish things and exploring a new walking track do distract me.