Weekly Reading Round-Up

I was fortunate enough to be the recipient of another book care package, which meant lots of new reads for me this week. Here’s what I’ve been reading:

— Jonathan Aycliffe, Whispers in the Dark

Very creepy classic Gothic, set in the north of England at the turn of the century, told in the requisite “rediscovered manuscript in the first person” style.

— Lois Duncan, Locked in Time

All right, this one was technically for my daughter, rather than me, but since it will still be a few years before she gets to it, I figured she wouldn’t mind. I have vague memories of reading this as a teenager and was fascinated by the way it had been updated to include cell phones and iPods– rather seamlessly. I’m not quite sure how to categorize it: teen Gothic? YA paranormal? Lois Duncan is a category unto herself.

— Charles Palliser, Rustication

An atmospheric and compelling Victorian-set novel told by an unreliable narrator (just sent down from Cambridge and addicted to opium) as he tries to figure out just what is going on in the small village to which his family has been exiled after his father’s abrupt death. Like all the other books on this list, this definitely falls into the Gothic category, although there’s no paranormal element.

— Laura Moriarty, The Chaperone

This is one of those books that I didn’t expect to like and then was utterly captivated. A 1920s Wichita housewife chaperones a neighbor’s daughter to New York– but she has her own secret motivations for the trip which unfold as you read.

What have you been reading this week?


  1. Liz on June 7, 2013 at 9:41 am

    I just finished The Passing Bells by Phillip Rock- gosh, I loved that book! It’s one of those great sweeping sagas starting at the beginning of WWI…written back in the 70s but feels really timeless and the writing pulls you in. I’m anxiously awaiting a trip to the library to start the second book in the trilogy, Circles of Time.

  2. Sheila on June 7, 2013 at 9:43 am

    I am so glad you like The Chaperone, one of my favorites from last year because it was very different in its setting and historical era. Of course I had to do some research afterwards, and much of it was very real.

    Now I am reading Aunt Dimity and the Lost Prince, and just finished Winspear’s latest, Leaving Everything Most Loved, which was excellent.

  3. Christine on June 7, 2013 at 9:59 am

    I’ve been playing catch-up and read The Paris Affair and A Duke Never Yields. Both were great – there’s a reason I keep going back to the same authors. Now I’m reading How to Tame Your Duke.

  4. Elizabeth (aka Miss Eliza) on June 7, 2013 at 5:29 pm

    Finally finished the Millenium series by Steig, now reading some Josephine Tey.

    Wish I got awesome Victorian/Gothic care packages in the mail…

  5. jeffrey on June 8, 2013 at 6:53 am

    I read two Jane Austen sequel novels by author Karen Aminadra:

    1) Charlotte, which depicts the life of Mrs. Collins as she makes friends in and around Rosings, Hunsford and also tries to make her husband fall in love with her. A sweet story full of warmth and humor and full of surprises.

    2) Rosings, which chronicles the dramatic improvements in Anne DeBourgh, as well as her intimidating Mother Lady Catherine. The story is a little more transparent and predictable than Charlotte but getting there was half the fun.

    Both enjoyable, plausible and entertaining reads.

  6. Céline on June 8, 2013 at 9:53 am

    I spent the week reading Patrick Rothfuss’ The Name of the Wind. I’m in the last third of the book and it’a really good! I love those fantasy sagas where you have time to get familiar with all the characters…

    • Elizabeth (aka Miss Eliza) on June 9, 2013 at 2:32 am

      I can not wait for the final book in this series, I just love it so much!

      • Céline on June 9, 2013 at 9:46 am

        My boyfriend is a book further into the series, nearing the end of Wise Man’s Fear, and he’s already asking himself how he is going to wait till the 3rd book is publish (2014, according to what he read somewhere…)!
        As to me… well… I’ve always had a soft spot for gingers… 🙂
        (and I’m soooo amazed by the world Patrick Rothfuss has created, the amount of details, the legends, and all! And the emotions he creates! He’s so talented, he’s an inspiration!)

  7. Nessa on June 8, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    After finishing Amanda Darling’s “Lola Montez”‘, I’m currently reading very entertaining “The Tao of Martha” by Jen Lancasterthat I picked up at her book signing Wednesday night.

  8. Yvette R on June 9, 2013 at 5:39 am

    I just finished listening to Georgette Heyer’s Charity Girl (it was just aquired by Audible earlier this week). It was, of course, wonderful.

    I have also been re-reading some Patricia Wentworth, Edmund Crispin, & Ngaio Marsh mysteries. I love reading contemporary mysteries written several decades ago. They rely on details of ordinary life … details that have changed so much since then. There was a scene in an Edmund Crispin mystery where one of the characters was chiding another about the blackout. One of them was (being annoying on purpose) quoting a government slogan about never forgetting the blackout precautions … but the other one pointed out that closing the curtains would alter the crime-scene. The first one said “yes, I know, but still … the blackout …” in a sing-song tone done to irritate the other. It was, of course, very important. But it was also an everyday annoyance for millions that went on for several years. My mother was small at the time, but she remembers it being spoken of in a very everyday manner.

    OK, history lesson over, but I love these sorts of details.

    • SusanN on June 10, 2013 at 7:49 pm

      I tried to read Charity Girl a couple of months ago and had to set it aside. Maybe I was just in the wrong frame of mind at the time–I’ll pick it up and give it another try later.

      I love period mysteries for the same reason–the historical accuracy of everyday things.

  9. DJ La Haie on June 13, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    I also tried Charity Girl recently and had to set it aside–just didn’t grab me. Finished Can You Forgive Her? by Anthony Trollope, first in the Palliser series, an old fav.

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