Weekly Reading Round-Up

Happy Friday, all! Here’s what I’ve been reading this week.

— Harriet Evans, Happily Ever After.

I’ve been reading Harriet Evans’s books since a friend gave me A Hopeless Romantic as a gift years ago. I think of her books as the next stage after chick lit: that frank, open tone, the addressing of day to day modern lives, but dealing with deeper emotions and larger issues than traditional chick lit. This one was the best of the lot so far, showing the full progression of the character’s growth from a naive just out of university girl to a grown up editor in her thirties, charting the various stages along the way.

— P.G. Wodehouse, Blandings Castle.

This was really two collections in one: a series of short stories centered around Lord Emsworth of Blandings Castle (think an older version of Turnip Fitzhugh, or a septagenarian Bertie Wooster), and then a bunch of short stories about Englishmen in Hollywood. The former batch, on Wodehouse’s usual turf of country house shenanigans, were sheer genius.

— Kristan Higgins, The Next Best Thing.

This is an old favorite re-read for me, contemporary romance set in a small town in Rhode Island.

— Teresa Grant, The Paris Affair (aka The Princess’s Secret).

One of the perks of being a writer is getting to read books before they come out. The Paris Affair is the follow up to Vienna Waltz and Imperial Scandal, the third Malcolm and Suzanne Rannoch mystery set in the midst of the intrigue immediately following the end of the Napoleonic Wars.

What have you been reading?


  1. Angela on September 21, 2012 at 12:25 pm

    Just finished an anthology of classic and contemporary (at least when the anthology was compiled) mysteries and now starting something called The White Forest.

  2. Jessica Mac on September 21, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    Totally jelous about T.Grant’s book!!! I can’t wait to catch up with Malcome and Suzanne!
    I started The Lady of the Rivers. Philippa Gregory never let’s me down.

  3. jeffrey on September 21, 2012 at 2:25 pm

    I’ve mixed things up a bit by reading two cowboy/western romances that plumb the opposite poles in their treatment of sexuality in a romance. On the explicit leave-nothing-to-the-imagination end is The Love of a Cowboy by Anna Jeffrey and on the extreme opposite is the Christian-based romance Daughter of Joy by Kathleen Morgan. I enjoyed/blushed all the way through the first one but LOVED and devoured the second one, which is #1 of a series.

  4. Elizabeth (aka Miss Eliza) on September 21, 2012 at 3:36 pm

    I read the 5th Brenda and Effie mystery by Paul Magrs, kind of Barbarella like time travel that was a fast and fun read.

    Than I read my bookclub selection of the month, We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson. I had never read this and really really liked it, so spooky and kind of like a much darker version of the Flavia De Luce books.

    Now I’m reading 666 Charing Cross Road, imagine Helene Hanff, of 84 Charing Cross Road fame as a demon hunter and there you go! Also by Paul Magrs. Have to get the books read for Margs Month on my blog for October!

  5. Vanessa on September 21, 2012 at 7:37 pm

    Happy Friday! I’ve been immersed in the Dress Lodger by Sheri Holman. I’ve just gotten past chapter 10 and I can’t put it down. It takes place in Sunderland, England a city quarantined by the cholera epidemic of 1831 and follows a girl named Gustine that sells herself in order to feed her baby son, she meets a Dr. Henry that is struggling with introducing the science of new medicine and cadavers, and that’s as far as I’ve gotten! It’s a dark yet romantic read.

  6. Pam on September 22, 2012 at 4:58 am

    This week I’ve been reading Death of a Cozy Writer by G.M. Malliet, a murder mystery and British social comedy set in an old country pile where an affected, gouty, and unpleasant patriarch and mystery author is offed during a gathering of his discontented (and sporadically disinherited) children. Great fun.

    Miss Eliza: I really liked We Have Always Lived in the Castle, the Haunting of Hill House is another good Jackson read.

    Vanessa: oh, The Dress Lodger, so good! Things are about to get interesting–enjoy! I’ve been meaning to check out her earlier book A Stolen Tongue.

  7. Céline on September 22, 2012 at 8:08 am

    I’m totally jealous about The Paris Affair!!!

    This week was slow in reading once more, I’m still making may way through Tracy Hickman and Margaret Weis’ series Death Gate – I’m towards the end of the 4th book. 3 to go and then, I’ll have to say goodbye to the characters…. 🙁

  8. Kristen A. on September 22, 2012 at 10:30 am

    I finished my reread of Don Quixote. Now I’m reading The Black Count by Tom Reiss, a new biography of General Alexandre Dumas, the father of the novelist and a larger than life figure of the type his son would become famous writing about.

  9. Elizabeth (aka Miss Eliza) on September 22, 2012 at 11:14 am

    Oh Pam, I can’t wait to read that too! So glad my Shirley Jackson edition has it in it.

  10. Alice on September 22, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    I am on book #3 of the Jean Fairbairn/Alasdair Cameron series by Lillian Stewart Carl. I LOVE them. She makes the characters a little complex and the mysteries are not that easy to solve. Cannot put them down!

  11. Katie on September 22, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    I just finished reading The Last Time I Saw Paris by Lynn Sheene. It was one of the best books I’ve read all year. I can’t fully express how much i enjoyed it! The descriptions and period details are very well done. The story was both powerful and moving and I was absolutely captivated! Put this book at the top of you TBR pile- you won’t regret it!

  12. HJ on September 22, 2012 at 4:58 pm

    Very jealous about Teresa Grant’s new book – and very confused! I thought her next book was The Paris Affair in March 2013 (after a novella in November called His Spanish Bride about their wedding). When is The Princess’s Secret due? or is that another name for The Paris Affair? (I suspect it is, having just read the blurb on her website.)

  13. Lauren on September 22, 2012 at 5:17 pm

    Ooops, yes, it is officially “The Paris Affair”– the manuscript copy I’m reading still has the old title….

  14. Jeans on September 23, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    Unfortunately, lately I’ve been reading mostly books I preparation for the classes I’m teaching. Mainly a multitude of histories in the areas of architecture, interior design, & furniture. But I am looking forward to reading several of these during Fall Break.

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