Weekly Reading Round-Up

This week, a bunch of much-anticipated books arrived. Here’s what I’ve been reading this week:

— Kristan Higgins, The Best Man

Kristan Higgins’s contemporary romances are one of my favorite escapes from the nineteenth century, so a new one is always cause for celebration.

— Rachel Hore, A Place of Secrets

Thanks, Pam, for the recommendation! Definitely for those who like Kate Morton, Susanna Kearsley, or Lucinda Riley’s The Orchid House. An eighteenth century mystery unfolds as a rare book appraiser goes back to her home county to appraise a collection of astronomical papers.

— Barbara Michaels, Sons of the Wolf

An old favorite Gothic novel, which I hadn’t re-read for quite some time. It is just as good as I remembered, and rather thought-provoking (for those who like debating the whole hero/villain issue in Gothic fiction). The voice of the heroine is also decidedly Amelia Peabody-esque, although her circumstances– indigent relative sent to live with mysterious guardian in Yorkshire– are very different.

— Alexandra Fuller, Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood

A fascinating memoir of growing up in Rhodesia/Zimbabwe, Malawi and Zambia in the 70s and 80s. Even though this was so much more recent, I was struck by how much was still familiar from my research into English ex-pat life in Kenya for The Ashford Affair.

What have you been reading this week?


  1. Christine on March 15, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    I read The Art Forger after someone here recommended it. I really liked it. Definitely a page turner. Something about the aftermath bugged me a bit but I can’t quite put my finger on it. Now I want to visit as many art museums as I can!

  2. Jessica S. on March 15, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    I’ve been re-reading my collection of Anne Rivers Siddons this week — I had a bad cold over last weekend and just needed some comfort reading. I highly recommend anything by her, as long as you don’t mind a little old-fashioned Southern crazy…or, in some cases, deep-seated madness.

    • leslie on March 15, 2013 at 2:54 pm

      ARS is good. Sweetwater Creek is one of my favorites.

  3. Sheila on March 15, 2013 at 2:27 pm

    Lauren , I am so glad you got around to the Fuller book.

    I am reading Kate Ross’ first Julian Kestrel book, Cut to the Quick. I am glad, I guess, to have yet another new series, but sad that there are only 4 because of her premature death.

  4. Nessa on March 15, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    I thought that Rachel Hore’s “Gathering Storm” was also pretty good.
    This week I finished re-reading George Eliot’s “Middlemarch” and discovered Gail Carriger’s omnibus “The Parasol Protectorate Soulless, Changeless, Blameless.” – Alexia Tarabotti seemd to me as a supernatural version of Amelia Peabody and I just loved it!.
    Now I’m staring very promising first book in Phillip Rock’s Trilogy – “The Passing Bells” that my best friend recommended as “very Downton Abbey”.

  5. Trish on March 15, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    It is “March Break” here in Ontario (your Spring Break, but we do it now) and the weather has been terrible – which is great for curling up in a chair with hot chocolate and books!!
    Read Susanna Kearsley’s The Shadowy Horses — loved it, Mary Stewart’s Nine Coaches — loved it and Tana French’s In the Woods — on the fence there – her Faithful Place was really good, and not that In the Woods was “bad” it just seemed to go on too long – or maybe I just got tired of the main character and his little dramas. Have Barbara Erkskine’s Time’s Legacy all set to go now.

  6. Kristen A. on March 15, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    I read Forbidden by Kelley Armstrong; fun to read once from the library, but that’s enough for me. I never liked the werewolves as much as the other narrators in the Otherworld series.

    Then I read The Barbed Crown by William Dietrich, an Ethan Gage book. I picked up the ARC even though I haven’t read the rest of the series because it was Napoleonic. It was a lot of fun and reminded me a bit of the Flashman series. Ethan Gage isn’t as much of a scoundrel as Flashy but he has a similar talent for being dragged against his will into every side of a conflict.

  7. Elizabeth (aka Miss Eliza) on March 15, 2013 at 4:44 pm

    This week I’ve been skipping back and forth between Flame Trees of Thika and Mark of the Lion… today though I feel like something different, the problem is there are too many wonderful books to chose from!

  8. Alice on March 15, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    Read “Ice BLue” and “Blue Murder.” Number one and two in the Lord and Lady Hetheridge mysteries by Emma Jameson. I really, really loved them! If you like Deborah Crombie’s Duncan Kincaid and Gemma James novels, then you will enjoy these.

  9. lou on March 15, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    Ahhhhh! I too am part of March Break here in Ontario Canada. Have read a book everyday and yet i just found six books mentioned here that sound interesting. If only I did not have to sleep!! Best one of my week….A Painted Veil by Somerset Maugham. Loved the movie. Decided to try the book…..it was even better. Just started A Little Folly by Jude Morgan. As jacket cover says it is a lovely mix of Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer.

  10. Am7 on March 15, 2013 at 7:11 pm

    I read The Morning Gift by Eva Ibbotson. I liked it sort of but I felt rather disappointed by the
    ending. Has anyone else read this?
    Anyway onto The Cocoa Conspiracy by Andrea Penrose. I loved the first one so I have high hopes for this one.

    • Alice on March 16, 2013 at 11:16 am

      Am7, I am with you on The Morning Gift. Too much misunderstanding and too much angst. The ending also seemed a little flat to me. My favorite Eva Ibbotson is In the Company of Swans.

      • Am7 on March 18, 2013 at 2:11 am

        Thank you Alice! I really wanted to like it, but I was so disappointed by the end. Someday I will try A Company of Swans!

  11. Lynne on March 16, 2013 at 1:30 am

    Just finished “Broken for You” by Stephanie Kallos. Very compelling…after the first 50 pages. I’m also re-reading Stephanie Barron’s Jane Austen mysteries. Same era as the Pink series and very good!!

  12. Jeffrey on March 17, 2013 at 6:54 am

    I was blessed to receive an advance copy of All the Appearance of Goodness by Maria Grace. This is Vol 3 of her Given Good Principles trilogy and it did NOT disappoint. It is a totally different re-imagining of Pride and Prejudice which I would recommend to any reader who cannot get enough of Elizabeth and Darcy.

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