The next novel I pick up will almost certainly be:
I'm especially pumped, because this means I will be participating in a three-person Buddy Read on the weekend. I'll be anxious to see how the book goes over with the two other participants, because--leading up to this--I read quite a few Mysteries by this author over a short stretch of months. so I will be comparing this one to my favourites, while--I think--others will be experiencing a Croft puzzle for the first time.
my favorite Inspector French novel so far--and I'm a bit surprised by this, because I don't think I've fallen in super-love with one of the high-profile ones!--is:
while a wonderful runner-up is:
(I've used an old cover here--it's also available as one of the "British Library Crime Classics"; I just couldn't resist the blood...sorry!)
honorable mentions to: (a) the Inverted Mystery called Antidote to Venom, and (b) the one I started with, Inspector French and the Starvel Hollow Tragedy. I really thought my next Crofts foray would be The Cask, a much-admired work, but things have turned out differently, and I'm happy for the change of plans due to the Buddy Read.
final note: if I finish the Maurice Leblanc short-story collection early--like, as in before the weekend--I will occupy myself with graphic novels, starting with Bloodstone, and I also have that Jack the Ripper collection to keep me busy (been a while!). I really don't think there's time for me to squeeze another book in between Leblanc, and the Buddy Read--if I tried that, I would likely get tied up with a book that pushed Hog's Back right off my weekend plans, and that would be a no-no.