This Is a Good Book Thursday: May 31, 2018

I’ve been reading Edmund Crispin–I’m going through a British mystery binge–and I’d forgotten how wonderfully off-the-wall Glimpses of the Moon is.  The detective, Gervase Fen, wanders about an English village with his friend the Major and a confused journalist, idly questioning colorful locals about a murder that’s already been solved, carrying a pig’s head in a bag at all times, until he finally, on page 51, arrives home alone, and looks in the mirror:

“He paused by the mirror, from which, not unexpectedly, his own face looked out at him.  In the fifteen years since his last appearance, he seemed to have changed very little.  Peering at his image now, he saw the same tall lean body, the same ruddy, scrubbed-looking, clean-shaven face, the same blue eyes, the same brown hair ineffectually plastered down with water, so that it stood up in a spike at the crown of his head.  Somewhere or other he still had his extraordinary hat.  Good.  At this rate, he felt, he might even live to see the day when novelists described their characters by some other device that that of manoeuvering them into examining themselves in mirrors.”

It’s a slow-moving intro, but I don’t care because I get omniscient reporting of interior monologue like this:

“The veal-and-ham pie at The Standbury Arms had been because of missing breakfast.  Digesting it was deterring Fen from lunch.  He decided to do without lunch, a policy he would regret around about mid-afternoon.  He felt like a hero continually arriving a good deal too late to save a succession of women in distress.”

Even the murder mystery is relaxed.  The victim is a thoroughly horrible person, so we don’t have to mourn him.  As the Rector says, “I don’t approve of speaking ill of people.  On the other hand, if you didn’t speak ill of Routh, you’d never mention him at all.”   Unlike most mystery plots that blaze a straight trail to the identification of the murderer, this one wanders down bypaths, stop for a drink and a sandwich, gazes out over the horizon, and then stumbles over the murderer at the end.  The murderer is a thoroughly bad lot, too.  It’s lovely.  And the whole thing is told in omniscient viewpoint, so you get the effect of somebody lazily telling a story on a warm summer afternoon. 

In other words, this is the perfect kind of book to read on a warm summer afternoon.  It’s in no hurry to get anywhere, but it’s enormous fun in its leisurely journey.  Especially when, on page 128, Fen finally opens the bag with the pig’s head.

(Note: I think this is the best of his books, the last one, written fifteen years after the previous one.  Some of the others are more annoying.)


91 thoughts on “This Is a Good Book Thursday: May 31, 2018

  1. I was thrilled to get an eARC of Ilona Andrews’ spinoff book about Hugh d’Ambrey, Iron and Magic. I’m still tickled that it started off as an April Fools joke but then they decided to really write the thing. But I have to give finals today and then grade all weekend!

    And all I want to do is read.

    1. Good luck with your finals! Try to hang on to the knowledge that you can read as much as you like when all this is behind you. 🙂

      1. Oh yes, I am! Then summer session starts, but I’ll be past the crunch time.

  2. I’ve read some more Pratchett since last week: Sourcery, Eric and Moving Pictures. Much to my delight, both Sourcery and Moving Pictures were better than I remembered them, possibly because I’m almost 10 years older now than last time I read them, and because I read them in English this time. Eric is still a weird book, that hasn’t changed. Not one of my favourite Pratchetts, I must admit.

    But finding both Sourcery and Moving Pictures better than I remembered has made me wonder if I’d feel differently about Equal Rites and Pyramids as well. I skipped them this time because… Well. I’ve read Equal Rites twice before and it’s OK, but I just can’t seem to really appreciate it as much as his other works. I remember when I read Pyramids that I was thinking “Ah, we’re almost finished!” only to realize I’d only read half the book…and the last 50 % of it only felt unnecessary. But perhaps I should give that one a second chance, too? AND Equal Rites?

    Anyway, I just started reading Reaper Man for the zillionth time. It has always been, and most likely it will always be, one of my favourite Pratchett books. Actually it was the Pratchett novel that made me want to read more by him (the first one I read was [coincidentally] Equal Rites, which didn’t convince me to dive further into Discworld), so it’ll always stay close to my heart because of that. It’s absolutely perfect reading weather here today: Insane rain and thundergods brawling their butts off. So I have all the best reasons to just stay inside and read with a nice cup of tea. 🙂

    1. I always thought Equal Rites was okay but not one of the keepers until I started looking for adult Pratchets for my oldest granddaughter. She’s in the fourth grade, but of course she’s a heavy reader and she’s way above level (as probably everybody here did), and she’s done the Tiffany books and loved them, so when I re-read Equal Rites and it’s about a girl who wants to be a wizard . . . She’s getting that for her birthday. I think it’s a good transition book.

      Pyramids I’ve always loved, I don’t know why. Maybe it’s the Egyptian mythology. Or the assassin training stuff, I love it that this laidback, easy-going kid is trained as an assassin, is called back home to take over a kingdom, and then confounds all the people who are trying to kill him. Plus there are the ancestors. And his duplicitous best friend. And the names. Hmmmm. Maybe I should read that again.

          1. My son was a huge Jingo fan when he was 9 or 10 and then Small Gods became his favorite. I could never figure out it’s appeal to an 11 year old.

  3. I’m rereading Mary Balogh’s ‘Slightly’ series, having kicked off with the related ‘A Summer to Remember’. Just what I need at the moment.

    I spent this morning trying to complain to Apple, who took my ruined iPhone 5s two weeks ago, halfway through my holiday, and refused to supply me with a replacement although the store had them in stock and I’d paid full price for one. Anyway, finally spoke to someone in Ireland who sounds like she’s actually going to do something about it. And if I never have to deal with the ‘intelligent’ robot who answers their phones, I’ll be happy. (‘I want to speak to the Brighton Apple Store . . . I WANT TO SPEAK TO THE BRIGHTON APPLE STORE!’ And then you’re put through to a phone that doesn’t answer and cuts you off after 5 or 10 minutes. Or some underling who’s charming but clueless.)

    1. She is a comfort read for me too. I love the emotional element of her stories, especially in the Survivor series.

      Good luck on the phone issue. Apple is usually pretty easy to deal with but the phone trees are everywhere and impossible to avoid.

      1. Her books are a nice read, aren’t they? And I really love how her heroines aren’t perfect… things have happened…. And I love the Wescott novels… I keep all of her novels… she brings me such peace. And she writes about grown-ups. And I’m a sucker for a sequel. 🙂

    2. My iPhone 5 was giving up the ghost and I couldn’t see the screen anyway, so I went in to replace it and said, “Show me the biggest phone you’ve got,” which turned out to be an 8+ and cost more than the mortgage on my house. But I could see the screen, and I had to have a phone, and I’m not about to learn a new system so I put myself into debt at AT&T. Smartest thing I ever did. That sucker is the first phone I actually use. I’m still annoyed about how much it cost, but it’s a good phone.

      1. Have you ever peeked in Settings -> General -> Accessibility? In case you need it, there are settings for contrast and zooming there. (And VoiceOver, should the eyes not want to work at all, but let’s assume they will for some 50 more years!)

        Apple products may be expensive as all hell, BUT they are definitely the most reliable when it comes to mobile phone accessibility.

        1. Thank you, I will check that out. The print was just too small, everything was too small. This screen is significantly bigger and clearer, which helps a lot. I think eventually, I’ll have to use my iPad as a phone screen, but for right now, the 8+ is doing the job.

          1. We both got 6S models last time we upgraded and OMG the difference in that extra bit of screen space has been a huge help to my old-before-their-time eyes. We weren’t thrilled with the cost back then either, but they’re the devices we use constantly and before anything else, even for writing to jot/dictate short bits, so totally worth it. Keep hearing your model is even better so looking forward to the next upgrade 😉

            Also, thanks for the book tip – that sounds like exactly the sort of snuggly comfort read I need right now. Then I’ll be starting a full re-read of ALL the Pratchett.

    3. I accidentally discovered that if I’m swearing into the phone tree loop, I get a real person sooner.

      1. There’s a thought. I generally swear over the automated messages and muzak, but I guess they’re not listening then.

      2. I’d heard that before. They program the robot to switch you to a person faster.

      3. F.Y.I., I’m a Customer Service Rep… (AKA, the lowest of the low), and if I have someone who is less than pleasant (NOT saying that anyone here would do that to the rep), then I will do *exactly* what the company says for me to do. However, if I have someone who I can make laugh, who makes me laugh, and who acts like I’m an actual person, I am willing to go above and beyond. After all, if you’re going to get called into your supervisor’s office: Who would you be willing to get in trouble for? 🙂 Or, who would you not care that you got in trouble for?

        Also: I normally get 100% on my customer satisfaction surveys, because I *do* care. And I make them laugh. I also use Davy Dempsey’s “Sales Pitch” on them. 🙂 So: thanks for the help, Jenny! 🙂

        1. You’re welcome.

          I don’t think Beth was talking about swearing at a human being, and I know I wasn’t. She was talking about getting stuck in a phone chain where you get one automated message after another (“Your call is important to us. Thank you for waiting.” “Your call is important to us. Thank you for waiting.” “Your call is important to us. Thank you for waiting.” “Your call . . .) If you swear at the robot, the program is trained to get you to a human being faster. Sucks for the robot, though.

          1. Oh, I know… and trust me, I’ve done that. The Macy’s card phone tree kept telling me “I don’t understand”. So, I pitched a temper tantrum, and said about 25 words, and then “Did you understand THAT?!” and slammed/hung up the phone. 🙂

            And even with the company I work for… I hate the external phone tree, as well as the internal phone tree. The only time I want a machine is when I want to know my balance and my due date.


  4. I’m reading something called Problem Sleuth. I will never understand this Andrew Hussie dude.

    I traded with my kid and they read Johnny the Homicidal Maniac. They thought it was plotless and too wrapped up in its own gore to be meaningful.


  5. I recently stumbled across a couple of books by Maddie Dawson that I think people here would really like. Matchmaking for Beginners and The Survivors Guide to Family Happiness.

  6. I’ve downloaded through Kindle from way of my library three books: What I Did For Love by Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Deeper Than Dead by Tami Hoag and Heartless by Mary Balogh. The first I’m halfway through, the second is a thriller and the third is Gothic based which is what I really like, full of angst, family drama and secrets.

    1. I love those three books. I guess we know what team SEP roots for. (I agree). 🙂

      I have read these three books multiple times.

  7. I have been going through a mystery phase.

    First I read three Charles Todd’s Bess Crawford mysteries which I always enjoy. But it was a mistake to read three in a week and a half because I noticed that the murderer doesn’t appear until about the last quarter of the book. Since I noticed this on the second book, it made the first three/quarters of the third book less interesting since I knew it was mostly false starts. I hope that this isn’t true for all of them or I will have to give them up.

    I also discovered Lawrence Sanders’s Archy McNally’s series which I had never read before. I have always loved Lawrence Sanders both his noire stuff and the amusing ones like the Burgler series and the Tanner ones and the ones about the assassin whose name I can’t remember. Archie is amusing. I am praying he doesn’t turn into a total womanizer. Of course, Travis McGee was one and it never seemed to bother me. Perhaps because he was a serial monogamist.

    1. I think you might be confusing Lawrence Sanders and Lawrence Block. I wouldn’t have mentioned it but I highly recommend the Burglar series by Block (the Matt Scudder books are awesome, too). 🙂

      1. Yes I am. And Matthew Scudder is the Block’s noire series and Keller is the hit man. Block is 80 and has published 201 books under an amazing number of pseudonyms. He must never have written a book that was turned down. And he still has 4 major mystery awards under his belt, not counting any he earned overseas.

        Well I don’t know that I read Lawrence Sanders before but I will give Archie a chance. But if he turns into a complete womanizer or goes from tongue-in-cheek to silly, I am out of here.

        1. He also wrote a great “how-to” book called “Telling Lies for Fun and Profit” (it’s worth buying for the title alone). 🙂 It’s a compilation of the articles he wrote for Writer’s Digest in the 70’s and 80’s (I received it as a gift in 1985) and is well worth a read.

  8. Faith Hunter’s Shadow Rites has entertained me this week. Adore Jane Yellowrock. “He’s my brother. You can tell by the jaw line and the level of snark.” Although I’m not sure if I’m ready for tea that can “pound iron and push locomotives.”

  9. You’re making me want to go back on a Wodehouse bender. Also thank you for the mystery rec from last week, I’m still on that series.

    And general cheers to everybody here, I mostly lurk on the Good Book Thursdays but I always get good recs in this thread and I appreciate them. Yay for sharing good books!

  10. I’m still creeping my way through a re-read of Deborah Crombie’s Duncan Kincaid/Gemma James series. Right now I’m in the middle of Water Like a Stone — it’s a painful read because the villainous people in it are believable and real and way too like people I’ve dealt with in my life and want never to deal with again. I don’t know why I’m persisting with it, given the way I feel about it. I suspect it’s a combination of stubbornness and being a complete-ist.

    I haven’t gotten around to reading the last 2-3, so I was living in dread that Something Very Bad happens at the end of the latest, Garden of Lamentations. (Very Bad as in Duncan or Gemma getting killed.) So I read the ending and nothing Very Bad happened. (I was worried in part because Garden came out last February and there’s nothing anywhere about the next book in the series.)

    I’m not sure what I’m going to read next…

    1. I’m trying to read “And Justice There is None”. I’m maybe about a quarter of the way through, and I can’t quite get into it. I think it’s made it into the stack of “I’m desperate and I have nothing else to read”. I do hope I can enjoy it more.

    2. OOOOOHHHHH…. just thought about it: Try Julia Spencer-Fleming, “In The Bleak Midwinter”. Beyond the gorgeous title, it’s a truly wonderfully read. She has a series that this is the first one of, and it is so truly awesome. I think it’s classified as a mystery. I loved this book, and all the sequels. 🙂

  11. Re Edmund Crispin the Moving Toy Shop is good. I don’t know how many years I am going back, I can’t even remember where it came from, but here it is

    I do not like thee Dr Fell
    The reason why I cannot tell
    But this I know, and know full well
    I do not like thee Dr Fell.

    Any clues?

    1. It’s a nursery rhyme from 1680. Per Wikipedia:

      The anecdote associated with the origin of the rhyme is that when Brown was a student at the Christ Church, Oxford, he was caught doing mischief. The dean of Christ Church, John Fell (1625–1686), who later went on to become the Bishop of Oxford, expelled Brown; but offered to take him back if he passed a test. If Brown could extemporaneously translate the thirty-second epigram of Martial (a well known Roman epigramist), his expulsion would be cancelled. The epigram in Latin is as follows:

      Non amo te, Sabidi, nec possum dicere quare;
      Hoc tantum possum dicere, non amo te.[3]

      Brown made the impromptu English translation which became the verse:

      I do not like thee, Doctor Fell,
      The reason why – I cannot tell;
      But this I know, and know full well,
      I do not like thee, Doctor Fell.[3]

  12. Have now finished three out of five Patrick Melrose novels by Edward St Aubyn, nearly caught up with TV series with B.Cumberbatch as Melrose. Have thoroughly enjoyed depictions of upper class England of 1980s.

    Still wrestling with Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle.

  13. I have a lot of time to read right now, so here are a few i’ve just finished:
    Two books by Ishbell Bee. Thr first one is the singular and extraordinary tale of mirror and goliath and the second one is the contrary tale of the butterfly girl. Both are gruesome and weird but I love the writing.
    Two books by Jo Baker. the first one is the mermaids child and the second is Longbourn. Once again, the mermaids child is not a fun book but the writing is great, longbourn is pride and prejudice from the servants point of view.
    Two books by Emma Newman: Brother’s Ruin and Weaver’s Lament. Sort of steampunk England with magic.
    Aliette de Bodard’s House of Binding Thorns, about Paris after the war of fallen angels. The previous book in the series is House of Shattered Wings.
    Also, Martha Wells All Systems Red, the first murderbot Book.
    Barbarian Days by William Finnegan. A Pulitzer Prize winning book about surfing.
    Sorry about the weird punctuation and grammar, typing on an iPad plays hell with my writing ability so mostly I just dictate.

  14. I am in a slump between books. I finished listening to Meljean Brooks’ Riveted, which I adore, and haven’t settled on anything else.

    Also I got into a very polite spat with someone on Instagram. A talented artist put up a post because she/they were upset that some of their designs were appropriated by someone else and made into little crochet figures.

    I understand the irritation at having your imagery borrowed, but feel that it is part and parcel of creating visual content. We were both nice about it, but I feel like both parties were left dissatisfied.

    Meh. I am still thinking about it, trying to imagine how I would feel if the same happened to me and I found out about it without being asked permission or credited…

    1. Well Richard Prince got $90,000 for stuff he just copied off the suic*de girls

      I think you’re lucky if it’s only an irritation, A cartoonist I read regularly had her cute little character appropriated, though not only without permission, they drew cartoons of her saying and doing terrible things, which in a search would be attributed to the cartoonist

      1. Same thing happens with Calvin and Hobbes. There are car decals being sold out there that he didn’t draw of Calvin peeing on something. It’s horrible.

    2. Well, it depends. If they were distinctly her designs, direct copies, then it’s not part and parcel of creating visual content, it’s theft.
      OTOH, if it’s an interpretation that doesn’t look that much like the original, then it’s inspiration.

      1. Thanks. That is the line in the sand that I am struggling with. What is inspiration and what is appropriation? I use a lot of anonymous images from Pinterest and the internet that I have a hard time tracing back to their creators. I don’t want to steal…

        1. I know.
          I think the clearest line is, if it’s a direct copy it’s stealing. If it’s inspiration, you took the idea and made it your own.
          Shakespeare never wrote an original plot. Every story he told was an old one. He just told the stories better than anyone had before.

          Gaffney told me about Wild At Heart: she’d read a novel she liked until she got to the end and then it was awful. So she took the premise and wrote it so that it ended her way.

          I really liked The Turn of the Screw, I taught it a lot, but then I found an old journal assignment from my first MA that was about “fixing” the classics, and I’d written how I’d change Evangeline, The Scarlet Letter, and The Turn of the Screw. And I started thinking about it again, and then I wrote Maybe This Time, which has plot points directly lifted from TTotS–governess alone with two disturbed kids and a limited housekeeper in big haunted house in the middle of nowhere, answering to a distant guardian she’s in love with–and moved it up to 1992 and fixed it so it was a Crusie instead of a James. I lifted scenes, too, like the governor and the little girl at a pond seeing a ghost across the way, I just wrote them my way. Nothing in my book was copied from James word for word, I just used his premise and some of his scene set-ups to tie my book to his.

          Somebody once said of artists, “We’re all standing on the shoulders of giants.” There’s no way to make art of any kind without influence from those who have gone before. The idea is to make it new, and make it better than anybody else has ever done.

          1. I loved discovering Turn of the Screw in Maybe This Time. When I taught high school, plagiarism was stealing someone’s words or ideas. The kids would sometimes steal words; they were unlikely to steal ideas. (If they had to think through an idea, they’d rather think through their own.) I think the core of plagiarism is stealing without acknowledging the original, perhaps hiding or denying it. In contrast, both Shakespeare and Crusie exploit the connection and wildly inflate it. Wonderful results.

    3. There have been quilters who have had to sue (and won) when their quilt designs were used for profit by someone not given permission.

  15. “He decided to do without lunch, a policy he would regret around about mid-afternoon.” Story of my life. And if I skip breakfast, then no matter much I eat after midday, I’m starving at 9pm.

    I read Cousin Kate by Georgette Heyer, and I don’t know how I feel about it. I think it was good, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as others of hers, and the feeling that I should have enjoyed it more leaves me conflicted. I might re read it later this year and see how I feel then.

    I’m also reading ‘Keeping your children safe online: a guide for New Zealand parents’ by John Parsons. Actually, maybe this is why the darkness in Cousin Kate wasn’t enjoyable – I needed Heyer for light relief. Anyway, it is worth my time reading it.

    1. I don’t much like ‘Cousin Kate’ either; I used to skim just for the romance between Kate and Philip, jumping over the depressing main story.

      1. Agreed on Cousin Kate, which is my least favorite Heyer: the nasty woman is too much, and poor, mad Torville is pathetic. My second least favorite is April Lady because the heroine and hero don’t know each other at all after a year of marriage: not believable. He can’t even tell that she isn’t a gamester. (‘Cause she’s lousy at math.)

  16. I started reading historicals (mainly regency ones) recently because my editor asked me to consider writing one myself, having majored in history at university. But so far, I haven’t come across any that are worth recommending (the last really good one I found was ‘Lord of Scoundrels’). Why does nobody tell these writers that you cannot just make up a story and transfer it 200 years back, thinking that by inserting words like ‘betwixt’ you have done enough to make it fit? I’m rather confused. The last time I felt like this was when I read a novel set in Scotland in the 13th century in which the knights were eating potatoes while they were preparing for battle. Do your research first, people.

    1. Try Courtney Milan’s historicals. More Victorian than Regency but awesome!!! I especially recommend the Turner Series – Unraveled, Unveiled, Unclaimed.

      1. Yes, I’ve read Courtney Milan’s ‘Brothers Sinister’ books and liked them. I didn’t mntionn them because I was looking for Regency.

    2. One of my favorite historical mystery authors started with historical romance; she wrote them under the name Candice Proctor. I’ve only read one of them, and it was years ago, but she’s meticulous in the research for her mystery series and the romantic subplot in that series is good, so I feel like the romances are probably worth trying. She had a lot of variety in terms of place and time period, I think, so that could be interesting.

      If you want to try the mysteries, those are written as C.S. Harris and the first book is What Angels Fear.

    3. The best I’ve found (in A-Z order, because I’m looking at my bookshelves) are Mary Balogh (try ‘A Summer to Remember’), Jo Beverley’s Rogues series (‘An Unwilling Bride’), Loretta Chase, Anna Dean (though they’re mysteries rather than romances), Amanda Quick (‘Rendezvous’), Jude Morgan (‘Indiscretion’).

      Poor research and complete anachronism throws me out too; but I also don’t think historical novels are history; they’re a riff on history, and what they need to do is create a convincing world, and tell a story that needs to be in that world.

      You could try some Fanny Burney, too.

      1. PS. Presumably because the Regency period has been used so heavily, more and more authors are going a bit later or earlier than that, which is refreshing.

    4. My absolute favorite historical is Grace Ingram’s Red Adam’s Lady. She wrote at least one other book which I have never read or even seen.

    5. I believe Cecilia Grant’s books are Regency-set. Joanna Bourne’s involve spies in the aftermath of the French Revolution. I’ve only read one by each, but they were excellent — intelligent, well-written, not wallpaper.

  17. I’m working through the Miss Marples now, but after you posted, I realized that I may never have read that Crispin. So that’s where I’m heading now.
    Stopped me right in the middle of Psmith.

  18. I realised this week that one of the girls has gotten off with The Last Dragon Slayer by Jasper Fforde. I had a yen to reread and I’m not impressed! Instead have retreated into Carl Hiaasen’s Skinny Dip, he amuses me so.

  19. I re-read a book by someone I usually enjoy, but the hero was such a macho bastard that I couldn’t enjoy it. I knew it was an old one, but geez, only 1992, surely I wasn’t oblivious to a patronizing control freak only 26 years ago. Going to re-read something trustworthy to get the taste out of my mouth.

    1. Yes, but imagine how hard it would be to write something like that. It wasn’t easy to read although it was very enjoyable.

      On the other hand it took me three separate tries to read Foucault’s Pendulum. The first time I made it half way through before it occurred to me I had no idea what I read and did not understand it. The second time I made it to within 100 pages of the end before I reached the same point. The third time I was on a sail boat and had plenty of time and no distractions (I cooked, I did not do anything with sails or the wheel because that was for those who enjoyed it). He writes very complex – or do I mean convoluted? – plots. Although his essay “How to Travel with a Salmon” is really amusing.

    2. I tried to read that book, because a friend wanted me to watch the movie with him. But I just couldn’t. And I have to read the book before I see the movie….. which is why I’ve never seen “The Hunt For Red October”. Love the idea, not so much on the execution of the story. But I have had friends who have read it again and again.

  20. Perhaps try ‘The Name of the Rose’ by Umberto Eco? I also have a particular fondness for the novels of Sara Donati – she is a linguist and very careful about anachronism.

    1. I keep trying to connect Sara Donati with Cynthia Ann Parker, but I can’t link them. But for some reason, when I saw Sara’s name, I immediately thought of Cynthia Ann Parker. ????

  21. I’m trying to read my physical books rather than e-books while I’m at home at the moment – which meant that I picked up Cotillion by Georgette Heyer this week.

    Turns out I hadn’t read it for so long, that I’d forgotten the story. Wonderful 🙂 a brand new Heyer doesn’t come along all that often.

    Lovely book. I think I’m in love with Freddy.

      1. Freddy is my favorite so far. The arcs where he steps up and Kitty notices are wonderful. His dad’s reactions to the grown up Freddy are well written too.

  22. I finished Snowdrift, the Heyer short story collection. It was fun to read, though the number of instantaneous engagements was hilarious. I suppose that’s a drawback of binging.
    My favorite was “A Husband For Fanny”.

  23. If you’re in the mood for English murder mysteries but want to change it up, one of my favorites is a quasi-parody of the golden age mystery, called The Affair of the Bloodstained Egg Cosy, by James Anderson. Multiple people creeping around a country house in the middle of the night, valuable items stolen, murders, tussles in the dark with unknown people… it’s hilarious. And the cover art for the original paperback was to die for: The new artwork for the trade and HC editions weren’t nearly as fun. There’s a sequel, too (The Affair of the Mutilated Mink Coat)

    1. I remember buying that a long time ago because of the cover. I know I read it, but I’m hazy on it now. We’re talking the 80s, I think, so it’s been awhile.

    2. This book sounded like something right up my alley, so checked out Amazon when I couldn’t find it listed at my local library. It looks like James Anderson wrote three of these, The Affair of the Bloodstained Egg Cosy, The Affair of the Mutilated Monk Coat, and The Affair of the Thirty-nine Cufflinks. There was a omnibus edition published back in 2010 for the three titles, it isn’t currently in print but you can find used and new copies through Amazon’s Marketplace vendors, or other booksellers platforms like Alibris or AbeBooks.

  24. Just inhaled Eloisa James’ Too Wilde to Wed. She’s such a fun read for me.

  25. Currently, I’m watching TV rather than reading or sleeping. I think it’s a step in the right direction. Except I’m supposed to be writing. Luckily both my clients thought a heart attack was a good excuse not to be meeting deadlines.

    I decided I would take it easy – and the tv is remarkably unused at the moment so I’m taking advantage. I get a free pass for a few more days then I’ll get back to the grind. I am back at the day job and that seems like enough currently. Lazy slut that I am.

Comments are closed.