What We’re Reading

Our Word Wench WWR posts are always popular, and our July reads start with Nicola Cornick:

Shrines of GaietyNicola here. My favourite read this month was Shrines of Gaiety by Kate Atkinson, which is set in London in the 1920s in the glittering and criminal world of the Soho clubs. I picked it up because the story, about the Croker family and their entertainment empire was inspired by that of the infamous nightclub owner Kate Meyrick, several of whose daughters married into the aristocracy, including the Craven family. The book perfectly captures the complicated and glamorous world of 1920s society. The character of Nellie Coker, the matriarch, is compelling, as is the plot in which the police on one side and Nellie’s enemies in the criminal fraternity on the other, are all aiming to bring her down. Her eldest son, Niven, is a great romantic hero. My major grumble was that the romance strand was left hanging, which was very frustrating for those of us who like happy endings! I’ve enjoyed some Kate Atkinson books more than others but this was one of my favourites.

US link here: UK line here.

I also picked up The Death of Mrs Westaway by Ruth Ware and thoroughly enjoyed that too. Mrs WestawayHarriet Westaway, struggling to make ends meet and even to survive in Brighton after her mother’s death, receives a letter that seems to answer all her prayers. The Cornish grandmother she never knew has left her a fortune. But Harriet’s grandparents died 20 years before… didn’t they? Desperate for the money, she decides to chance it and see if she can get away with the fraud, which brings her into the Westaway family circle and a whole host of secrets waiting to be revealed. This is a gothic thriller with all the trappings – a creepy old house, an equally creepy old family retainer and various weird relatives hiding all sorts of secrets. I found it a page-turner and went on to read another of Ruth Ware’s books, The It Girl, straight after.

US link UK link

Now from Pat Rice:

MailThe Cold Blue Blood by  David Handler

I like Handler’s mysteries. He does a brilliant job on setting and characters and lays out all the clues for everyone to see with no tricks up his sleeve. And it’s still impossible to know the exact answer until the end. But it’s his characterization which sucks me in every time. In this series, the main protagonist is a NYC Jewish film critic who has lost his young wife to cancer and is in a serious depression. Given an opportunity to rent a shack with a view on an island of wealthy New England blue bloods, he grabs the chance to escape the city and write his book and start a garden. Except there’s a body in the garden. And the police person who investigates is a tall dark drink of water in dreadlocks and carrying a cat carrier. It just keeps getting better and better. And now I’m going to order the next book in the series.

Unlikely Animals, Annie Hartnett

Let’s call this one madcap magical realism. It’s based on an actual animal park in New Hampshire. The main protagonist, Emma, is depressed and returns to her NH home after being unable to force herself to enter UnlikelyAnnimalsmedical school. She was born with what the family calls the “charm” of healing and med school seemed a natural. But at home, her brother is suffering from an opioid addiction and her father has been booted from the university because he’s seeing rats and cats where there are none—and she can’t heal them.. So she takes on a substitute teaching job for fifth graders, and life snowballs. We have a chorus of voices from the graveyard, the ghost of a botanist who actually existed, a Russian fox who gets a voice, and yes, healing—whether magical or not is hard to tell. No one said this book was meant to be real or literary—just entertaining. If you want a little dose of strange, give it a try. The kids performing the Titanic to Frozen Iyrics are worth the price.

Next up: Christina Courtenay:

WycliffeChristina: I’ve read loads of books this month but only two stood out. First of all, fellow Wench Patricia Rice’s new story The Secrets of Wycliffe Manor, which is an absolute delight from beginning to end! Set in the Regency era, the plot is unique and intriguing, and kept me spellbound. I loved the quirky characters as well – original and well-drawn, the motley crew made me root for them all. The plot had me turning the pages and although there is more to come – this is the first book in a new series – the revelations made for a satisfying conclusion so far. I can’t wait for the next one!

The other one was Happy Place by Emily Henry. This is one of those books that sort of grabs you by the throat and doesn’t let go. Once it’s over, the characters stay in your mind and you can’t stop thinking about them. It was incredibly emotional and I almost cried several times – something I don’t often do when reading – and there were times when I felt as if I couldn’t breathe. Right to the last chapter, I wasn’t sure whether the hero/heroine were going to get their happy-ever-after and it was killing me! Harriet and Wyn had been together for years, their love for each other rock solid – until it wasn’t. Lots of things conspired to drive Happy Placethem apart, and their own insecurities made everything worse. Finally, Wyn broke it off and Harriet’s pain knew no bounds. She was hoping never to see him again, but they were part of a group of six friends who always went on vacation together at least once a year to a cottage in Maine. When they find out two of the people in the group are getting married, Harriet feels obliged to go – but so does Wyn. As they haven’t told the others of their break-up, the situation is as awkward as it can possibly be. They decide to pretend that they’re still together, but their hurt runs deep and emotions are high. Can this final week together give them any answers or solutions? I couldn’t wait to find out.

Now Anne Gracie:

AnnesI recently read The Goddess of Fried Okra, by Jean Brashear. It’s a departure from her usual series romance, more of a women’s fiction story — actually it’s billed as “A Small Town Family of Misfits Road Trip Romantic Comedy”. It’s about a rootless young woman on a quest to meet up with her late sister’s reincarnation — sounds bonkers, I know, but it makes sense in the end — and picking up other lone wanderers along the way. I enjoyed it, but decided the ending left a little too much up in the air for me. I confess, I do like all my loose ends tied up, but others would probably enjoy it.

I’m currently rereading Liane Moriarty’s Big Little Lies, which I mentioned in this column back in 2016. I’m Big-little-lies-liane-moriartynot only rereading it for pleasure, but also because I’m planning to conduct a workshop about “Surprising and Delighting Readers” and want to refresh my memory, because Big Little Lies ends with a brilliant surprise. Back then, I said “I thought was wonderful — clever and engaging — it’s a mystery of sorts, and the reader has to work out what’s happening. And without spoilers, I have to say it ends well — and with a romance.”

Mary Jo here:

First up of my fun recent reads is The Spare Man by the well known SFF writer Mary Robinette Kowal.  She’s won many awards and this particular book is a finalist for this year’s Hugo for best novel.

SpareManThe story is a riff on the classic murder mystery-solving and cocktail-loving couple, Nick and Nora Charles.   (The protagonists of the movie called The Thin Man.)   Kowal’s version takes place on a cruise liner traveling between the Moon and Mars, and two of the guests are Tesla Crane, genius inventor and heiress, and her husband Shal, recently retired celebrity detective.  They’re traveling incognito to enjoy some peace and  quiet on their honeymoon.

Then someone is murdered outside of their cabin and the idiot head of security decides that Shal is the killer and locks him up.  Tesla is not having that, and the hunt for the villain begins.  An equally important character is Tesla’s service dog, Gimlet, who is Westie, an adorable little terrier who charms everyone, but is also essential to Tesla because a catastrophic accident left her with panic attacks and major physical trauma that requires her to have a Deep Brain Pain Suppressor which allows her to control the amount of pain she is feeling.  I love Tesla and Shal and of course Gimlet, who is an essential part of the story.  I suspect that this is the first of a series and I look forward to more stories about the three of them.

Interestingly, Robinette Kowal has also written an extremely Jane Austen-ish five book series called The Glamourist Histories.  The setting and voice are very Regency, but the main characters are skilled glamourists; that is, the creative vivid illusions from magic and are much in demand for artwork and home decorations.  The heroine is named Jane and there is a very Darcy-ish hero named Vincent, who is a brilliantly talented glamourist.  The first in the series is called Shades of Milk and Honey

I was also glad to read Playing It Safe, third in Ashley Weaver’s Ellie McDonnell mystery series.  Set at the beginning of WWII in PlayingItSafeLondon, it features Ellie McDonnell, who is part of a family of thieves and safe crackers, skills she learned from her beloved Uncle Mick, who raised her along with her two male cousins.  In the first book, she and Uncle Mick are trapped and blackmailed into helping Major Ramsay, a British counter-intelligence agent in pursuit of Nazi spies and in need of a good safe cracker.

Though Ellie and her family have operated outside the law, they’re also loyal Britons and she’s more than willing to use her skills to aid her country. In this third book, London is being bombed nightly in the Blitz, so Ellie is glad when Ramsay sends her to Sunderland, a port city in the northeast.  But the maddening major only dispenses information on a ‘need to know’ basis and she gets into trouble trying to figure out what’s going on. All along there has been lot of tension between Ellie and Ramsay, but they come from very different worlds so both are suppressing their attraction.  Once more Ellie’s safe cracking skills are useful in the pursuit of German spies–and the attraction between them isn’t suppressed as well as it has been!

Andrea’s turn:  

CitizensofLondonI’m madly scribbling away to meet a deadline, so my leisure reading has been much lighter than usual this past month. I did, however, manage to squeeze in a fascinating non-fiction book, recommended by a friend whose husband’s grandfather play a major role in the story. Citizens of London: The Americans Who Stood with Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour by Lynn Olson, tells the inside story how a handful of intrepid American movers and shakers used their influence to convince Roosevelt and the American people to support Britain as it struggled to stand alone against the ferocious might of Nazi Germany.

It focuses on three larger than life figures: Edward R. Murrow, the legendary CBS newsman who broadcasted from London during the Blitz;, American Ambassador John Gilbert Winant, who replaced defeatist Joseph P. Kennedy and came to forge a close friendship with Churchill; and  Averill Harriman, a millionaire playboy and confidant of Roosevelt who headed up the Lend-Lease. The stories of how they worked connections and friendships on both sides of the Pond are riveting. And the glimpses of glamorous high society social life—and love affairs—that remained in full swing despite the war are fascinating.

The depictions of courage and strength as well as the hijinks and craziness of people living as if tomorrow might not come were very well-wrought. If you find WWII history interesting. don’t miss it.

 

So–what have you been reading?

Mary Jo

49 thoughts on “What We’re Reading”

  1. Nothing outstanding in my July reading, but I’m really looking forward to reading Andrea’s choice, Citizens of London. WWII is not my usual pick, but I love strong, real characters, especially ones who are part of “my” history, as these are. How often history hangs on one or a few remarkable people who, in retrospect, saved or sank the ship of civilization. Another period of “interesting times.” (Kind of like … today?)

    Reply
  2. Nothing outstanding in my July reading, but I’m really looking forward to reading Andrea’s choice, Citizens of London. WWII is not my usual pick, but I love strong, real characters, especially ones who are part of “my” history, as these are. How often history hangs on one or a few remarkable people who, in retrospect, saved or sank the ship of civilization. Another period of “interesting times.” (Kind of like … today?)

    Reply
  3. Just finished Eloisa James’s latest, Not That Duke, which is pure James – always a good thing IMO! This is the latest in the Would-Be Wallflowers series. Both the heroine and hero were characters in James’s last book, too. Stella is short, bespectacled, and red-haired – and if that’s not bad enough for London society, she’s also very well-read, curious and opinionated. Silvester is determined not to marry an opinionated, well-read woman, having a mother of similar ilk. It’s fun, sexy, and a very quick read – perfect for summer.
    Other than that, I’ve been re-reading the entire Ngaio Marsh series of Roderick Alleyn mysteries, with an eye to donating them all to our next library sale. But, as usual, it might have been better NOT to re-read them, as now I am not sure I can part with them after all!

    Reply
  4. Just finished Eloisa James’s latest, Not That Duke, which is pure James – always a good thing IMO! This is the latest in the Would-Be Wallflowers series. Both the heroine and hero were characters in James’s last book, too. Stella is short, bespectacled, and red-haired – and if that’s not bad enough for London society, she’s also very well-read, curious and opinionated. Silvester is determined not to marry an opinionated, well-read woman, having a mother of similar ilk. It’s fun, sexy, and a very quick read – perfect for summer.
    Other than that, I’ve been re-reading the entire Ngaio Marsh series of Roderick Alleyn mysteries, with an eye to donating them all to our next library sale. But, as usual, it might have been better NOT to re-read them, as now I am not sure I can part with them after all!

    Reply
  5. I’ve been raving about The Covenant of Water, by Abraham Vergese, to everyone I know, so I’ll do it here, too: it’s worth persevering through every dauntingly long page! But I also found a new-to-me romcom author: Bethany Turner, and I loved an ARC of her upcoming Brynn and Sebastian Hate Each Other.

    Reply
  6. I’ve been raving about The Covenant of Water, by Abraham Vergese, to everyone I know, so I’ll do it here, too: it’s worth persevering through every dauntingly long page! But I also found a new-to-me romcom author: Bethany Turner, and I loved an ARC of her upcoming Brynn and Sebastian Hate Each Other.

    Reply
  7. Good to know! Someone lent me their copy of Covenant yesterday, saying it’s the best book they’ve read in some time, and that they’ve already read it twice. (They also suggested I scribble down people’s names & relationships as I read, the better to keep track…)

    Reply
  8. Good to know! Someone lent me their copy of Covenant yesterday, saying it’s the best book they’ve read in some time, and that they’ve already read it twice. (They also suggested I scribble down people’s names & relationships as I read, the better to keep track…)

    Reply
  9. One of the best books I read so far this year is Patricia Rice’s Secrets of Wycliffe Manor. And then there is Murder At Ashton Steeple by Karen Baugh Menuhin. And almost as good as those two – Agatha Christie’s Crooked House. I have read q lot of good books this month. This is one of the best reading months I have had in a long time. Now, I have made my own list of some of the books y’all have told me were good reads too.
    Thank you.

    Reply
  10. One of the best books I read so far this year is Patricia Rice’s Secrets of Wycliffe Manor. And then there is Murder At Ashton Steeple by Karen Baugh Menuhin. And almost as good as those two – Agatha Christie’s Crooked House. I have read q lot of good books this month. This is one of the best reading months I have had in a long time. Now, I have made my own list of some of the books y’all have told me were good reads too.
    Thank you.

    Reply
  11. This month’s recommendations from me are:
    A Royal Affair by Allison Montclair, the second in the Bainbridge & Sparks series in which our two redoubtable exagents are pulled back in to check into certain allegations that may be made about Prince Philip – whom I will always now visualize as Matt Smith – while finding possible mates for their introduction service clients and dealing with postwar London. I have to go back now and read the first one because I didn’t have it at the time. The dialog is snappy and the postwar stuff seems authentic.
    The Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan – a young woman buys a van, fixes it up and stuffs it with books because the small brick & mortar stores are going out of business and she loves to match people with books. It’s chicklit and a bit sentimental and everybody is way too nice to be entirely credible but it’s a pleasant undemanding read.
    The London Restoration by Rachel McMillan – a woman crazy about churches reunites with her husband after the war, surveying bombed and wrecked Christopher Wren churches and trying to rebuild their marriage, with the time to become known to each other that they never had during the war. Very good, very thoughtful, written at a higher level than most pop fiction I see now. It “feels” like 1945 in this novel.
    As for the other stuff, I’m still catching up on Harlequins and have found a couple of authors new to me that I enjoy – Annie Burrows and Millie Adams (who uses the new style to great intense effect). Onward 🙂

    Reply
  12. This month’s recommendations from me are:
    A Royal Affair by Allison Montclair, the second in the Bainbridge & Sparks series in which our two redoubtable exagents are pulled back in to check into certain allegations that may be made about Prince Philip – whom I will always now visualize as Matt Smith – while finding possible mates for their introduction service clients and dealing with postwar London. I have to go back now and read the first one because I didn’t have it at the time. The dialog is snappy and the postwar stuff seems authentic.
    The Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan – a young woman buys a van, fixes it up and stuffs it with books because the small brick & mortar stores are going out of business and she loves to match people with books. It’s chicklit and a bit sentimental and everybody is way too nice to be entirely credible but it’s a pleasant undemanding read.
    The London Restoration by Rachel McMillan – a woman crazy about churches reunites with her husband after the war, surveying bombed and wrecked Christopher Wren churches and trying to rebuild their marriage, with the time to become known to each other that they never had during the war. Very good, very thoughtful, written at a higher level than most pop fiction I see now. It “feels” like 1945 in this novel.
    As for the other stuff, I’m still catching up on Harlequins and have found a couple of authors new to me that I enjoy – Annie Burrows and Millie Adams (who uses the new style to great intense effect). Onward 🙂

    Reply
  13. oh wow, being mentioned in the same post with Menuhin and Christie makes my day, thank you! I am patting myself on the head now, before I drag back to the book That Will Not Die.

    Reply
  14. oh wow, being mentioned in the same post with Menuhin and Christie makes my day, thank you! I am patting myself on the head now, before I drag back to the book That Will Not Die.

    Reply
  15. July reads ~
    — For my distant book group, I read The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams. (I’d attempted unsuccessfully to read this last, but this time was a go.) This book is a very female centric book which I enjoyed. The main character’s life revolves to a large extent on the making of the Oxford English Dictionary.
    — read We Could Be So Good by Cat Sebastian which I enjoyed (even though I took a two week break mid-book). This was a historical romance set in the 1950s featuring two men, a newspaper journalist and the son of the newspaper’s owner who is learning the business.
    — reread two fan fiction short stories set in the world of a favorite series (Lyn Gala’s Claimings series); I enjoyed them both. They were Deviations and Revelations, both by allonym.
    — read Signal Moon by Kate Quinn, a short work which I quite enjoyed. It features two characters, a young woman living during WWII and a young man in 2023, who communicate with each other via radio.
    — completed another reread of a favorite book, Alliance by S. K. Dunstall.
    — while recovering from some minor surgery, I reread a couple of relatively recent favorites ~ The Book of Firsts and Four Kings both by Karan K Anders. (Anders is the pen name that Andrea K Höst uses for her adult books.) These are reverse harem romances that I’d describe as new adult.
    — I’m drawn to stories with a time travel element so was happy to get a library copy of 11/22/63 by Stephen King. I quite enjoyed this book about a man going back in time to attempt to stop the assassination of JFK, but be forewarned that it is long (1121 pages!) and contains a fair bit of violence. I’ve read very little by Stephen King as I do not care for horror, but this was not a horror story.
    — For my local book group, I read The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness by Sy Montgomery. This was an easy to read nonfiction book about octopuses. (The author said that the word octopi is incorrect which was news to me.)
    — enjoyed the science fiction book Divinity 36: Tinkered Starsong by Gail Carriger. It had a unique storyline (I’ve seen reviews that mention the adultation of rock and K-pop bands as being similar to what the gods experience here), and I look forward to the release of the sequel.
    — an art book that was a quick and pleasant read ~ Doodling for Tree Huggers & Nature Lovers by Gemma Correll.
    — quite enjoyed Romantic Comedy by Curtis Sittenfeld which is the first book I’ve read by this author. This featured a woman writing for a late night show and a musician appearing on the show in 2018 as a guest host. The story resumes in 2020 when they reconnect, in Covid times, via email. I have a fondness for books with epistolary content, so this definitely appealed.
    — also enjoyed Chaos Reigning (The Consortium Rebellion Book 3) by Jessie Mihalik; I thought I had read this final book in a science fiction romance series but evidently had not. My one quibble is that the reader learns very little about the hero.
    — an enjoyable historical romance, The Gentleman’s Book of Vices (Lucky Lovers of London 1) by Jess Everlee. This featured two men, an author and a man with debts who is reluctantly on the verge of marrying.
    — quite enjoyed Charm City Rocks: A Love Story by Matthew Norman; this book features a once famous female rock drummer and a cardigan wearing piano teacher who are brought together by the latter’s teenaged son.

    Reply
  16. July reads ~
    — For my distant book group, I read The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams. (I’d attempted unsuccessfully to read this last, but this time was a go.) This book is a very female centric book which I enjoyed. The main character’s life revolves to a large extent on the making of the Oxford English Dictionary.
    — read We Could Be So Good by Cat Sebastian which I enjoyed (even though I took a two week break mid-book). This was a historical romance set in the 1950s featuring two men, a newspaper journalist and the son of the newspaper’s owner who is learning the business.
    — reread two fan fiction short stories set in the world of a favorite series (Lyn Gala’s Claimings series); I enjoyed them both. They were Deviations and Revelations, both by allonym.
    — read Signal Moon by Kate Quinn, a short work which I quite enjoyed. It features two characters, a young woman living during WWII and a young man in 2023, who communicate with each other via radio.
    — completed another reread of a favorite book, Alliance by S. K. Dunstall.
    — while recovering from some minor surgery, I reread a couple of relatively recent favorites ~ The Book of Firsts and Four Kings both by Karan K Anders. (Anders is the pen name that Andrea K Höst uses for her adult books.) These are reverse harem romances that I’d describe as new adult.
    — I’m drawn to stories with a time travel element so was happy to get a library copy of 11/22/63 by Stephen King. I quite enjoyed this book about a man going back in time to attempt to stop the assassination of JFK, but be forewarned that it is long (1121 pages!) and contains a fair bit of violence. I’ve read very little by Stephen King as I do not care for horror, but this was not a horror story.
    — For my local book group, I read The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness by Sy Montgomery. This was an easy to read nonfiction book about octopuses. (The author said that the word octopi is incorrect which was news to me.)
    — enjoyed the science fiction book Divinity 36: Tinkered Starsong by Gail Carriger. It had a unique storyline (I’ve seen reviews that mention the adultation of rock and K-pop bands as being similar to what the gods experience here), and I look forward to the release of the sequel.
    — an art book that was a quick and pleasant read ~ Doodling for Tree Huggers & Nature Lovers by Gemma Correll.
    — quite enjoyed Romantic Comedy by Curtis Sittenfeld which is the first book I’ve read by this author. This featured a woman writing for a late night show and a musician appearing on the show in 2018 as a guest host. The story resumes in 2020 when they reconnect, in Covid times, via email. I have a fondness for books with epistolary content, so this definitely appealed.
    — also enjoyed Chaos Reigning (The Consortium Rebellion Book 3) by Jessie Mihalik; I thought I had read this final book in a science fiction romance series but evidently had not. My one quibble is that the reader learns very little about the hero.
    — an enjoyable historical romance, The Gentleman’s Book of Vices (Lucky Lovers of London 1) by Jess Everlee. This featured two men, an author and a man with debts who is reluctantly on the verge of marrying.
    — quite enjoyed Charm City Rocks: A Love Story by Matthew Norman; this book features a once famous female rock drummer and a cardigan wearing piano teacher who are brought together by the latter’s teenaged son.

    Reply
  17. Wow….I’ve written down so many titles already this month!
    As for my reading this month…it was comforting. In other words, I was satisfied even if there weren’t any remarkable new books in the lot. Grin.
    Except for two art books.. One on how to use oil pastels and one that shows me how to paint easy flowers on rocks. I’ve been wanting to know how to paint easy flowers but most books just assume I know way more than I do!

    Reply
  18. Wow….I’ve written down so many titles already this month!
    As for my reading this month…it was comforting. In other words, I was satisfied even if there weren’t any remarkable new books in the lot. Grin.
    Except for two art books.. One on how to use oil pastels and one that shows me how to paint easy flowers on rocks. I’ve been wanting to know how to paint easy flowers but most books just assume I know way more than I do!

    Reply
  19. Hope you are all recovered from your surgery, Kareni, and doing well! I laughed at your comment about the plural of octopus – my husband has read many, many books on the animal (repeatedly suggests we should have one!) and was quite affronted to read The Soul etc and be told that octopi is incorrect! He begs to differ!

    Reply
  20. Hope you are all recovered from your surgery, Kareni, and doing well! I laughed at your comment about the plural of octopus – my husband has read many, many books on the animal (repeatedly suggests we should have one!) and was quite affronted to read The Soul etc and be told that octopi is incorrect! He begs to differ!

    Reply
  21. Thank you, Constance; I am still healing.
    I sympathize with your husband. My daughter’s Latin and Greek instructor said that the plural of octopus is octopodes as octopus came from Greek, so there’s another variant to add to the mix!

    Reply
  22. Thank you, Constance; I am still healing.
    I sympathize with your husband. My daughter’s Latin and Greek instructor said that the plural of octopus is octopodes as octopus came from Greek, so there’s another variant to add to the mix!

    Reply
  23. I have 2 recommendations this month:
    Lisa Hobman ‘ Dreaming under an Island Skye’
    Excellent escapism with second chance at love story, set on the Isle of Skye. I will be trying more of Hobman’s audio books.
    Sally Rigby ‘ Detective Seb Clifford ‘ series
    Clifford is retired from The police and becomes a private investigator. Meets police detective Bird through an investigation and persuades her to join his new company. Rigby’s writing is addictive and I have now listened to all of the 4 available audio books and pre-ordered the next!

    Reply
  24. I have 2 recommendations this month:
    Lisa Hobman ‘ Dreaming under an Island Skye’
    Excellent escapism with second chance at love story, set on the Isle of Skye. I will be trying more of Hobman’s audio books.
    Sally Rigby ‘ Detective Seb Clifford ‘ series
    Clifford is retired from The police and becomes a private investigator. Meets police detective Bird through an investigation and persuades her to join his new company. Rigby’s writing is addictive and I have now listened to all of the 4 available audio books and pre-ordered the next!

    Reply
  25. Got the kindle e-book of Citizens Of London from the library (as mentioned by Andrea above). Not sure if I’ll be able to finish it, as every page is a click-through to Wikipedia about someone or something. Great recommendation. Wish there was a biography on Stella Isaacs, Lady Reading.

    Reply
  26. I just got back from a short trip, so I’ll save my recent books for next month. But I love seeing everyone’s recommendations, and I’ve added several to my TBR list.

    Reply
  27. I’ve been doing a Dorothy Garlock reread festival, except it turns out that as long as I’ve had her books, there was one that I’d never read! & another had been read so long ago that it was like a new one! So I’ve been wandering the various frontiers & eras of the United States. She has such a good descriptive ability & makes me grateful all the time for the era I live in!
    First was Homeplace, one of my top favorites–might be a DIK–set on an Iowa farm in 1885, then Yesteryear–Arkansas right after the Civil War & then traveling via freight train to the New Mexico territory; Annie Lash (Missouri #2) which is set in north central Missouri territory in 1811. Then I realized I’d never read bk 1 of the Missouri series, so on to Wild Sweet Wilderness, same era & a few years earlier, then Almost Eden, mostly in the same area, 1811 but finishing somewhere in the Rocky Mountains. I’m debating now whether to continue the festival or pick up another author…may want to start a modern one for a break… Hooray for variety!

    Reply
  28. And yep, I did continue with her books: I opened Lonesome River, set on the Illinois/Indiana Frontiers, along the Wabash River in 1811. Funny thing is that Yesteryear is bk 4 of the Wabash River series even tho’ it’s next generation & starts in Arkansas about 1865…dates don’t feel right for that–after all, it’s Amy & Rain’s son & they’re the MC’s of the 2nd bk in the series so 50+ years later! Their adventures did start in 1819…maybe the dates can work…he was a very late baby…?
    I did pull out a current day, and just about as far from DG’s books as you can get! Cherise Sinclair’s Masters of the Shadowlands, I opened (again) #15 The Effing List. So, modern Tampa, Florida area & BDSM. Such a great series!

    Reply
  29. Kc, indeed you’re reading in two entirely different places! I hadn’t realized just how widely spread Dorothy Garlock’s stories are. As as an author myself, I’m inclined to cut other authors some slack on timelines. Sometimes a bit of fudging is needed to make stories work.

    Reply

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