Now that I’ve gotten over my Elizabeth George kick, I can finally dig into that pile of books my amazing college roommate gave me last week. There have also been a few shopping indiscretions since last I posted (also known as Why I Should Not Be Allowed into Bookstores). Despite the fact that I now have far too many books to choose from, I’ve managed to narrow down this weekend’s reads to the following:
1. Austenland by Shannon Hale.
Despite loving the Austen books, I’ve been very wary and more than a little bit cynical about all the modern spin-offs that have mushroomed on the shelves recently. I adore Melissa Nathan’s Pride, Prejudice & Jasmine Field, but I otherwise tend to stay away from Austen-named books– until someone recommended Austenland to me this week. The premise is a clever take-off on Austen mania, a Pride and Prejudice obsessed American traveling to an Austen-themed resort. I’m ridiculously excited about reading it.
2. Captives of the Night by Loretta Chase.
Anything by Loretta Chase is always pure gold. Her research… her use of language…. Don’t even get me started. So when this appeared in the stack my roommate gave me, it went right to the top of the pile (despite the man with the strange haircut on the cover. Regency heroes should not use that much hair gel).
3. Journal of a Residence in India by Maria Graham.
Proof positive that the plucky, globe-trotting Englishwoman isn’t merely the invention of modern novelists, Maria Graham zigzagged across India in 1809. She explored erotic drawings in remote caves outside of Bombay, attended nautch dances thrown by natives of Calcutta, and camped her way across the countryside, all the while remaining every inch a gentlewoman. Her journal makes fascinating reading– and a great rejoinder to those who like to begin sentances with “Women in the nineteenth century would never have….”
What are you reading?