It’s been a rather crazy week– and a strangely long one– so I’m having the hardest time thinking back to what I might have read!
I went seasonally inappropriate with Susan Wittig Albert’s Christmas-set mystery, The Mistletoe Man, Book 9 in her China Bayles series about an attorney who leaves her Houston practice to open an herb store in a small town in Texas. I read the first few in this series a very, very long time ago (how long ago? let’s just say they’re still on my pre-college bookshelves at my parents’ house!), so I was a little worried about missing context, but I found it very easy to jump back into the series, even with a gap of twenty years and roughly six unread books in between. In this one, a surly mistletoe farmer is found dead. Victim of a hit and run? Or is it murder?
Moving from modern Texas to revolutionary France, I was so thrilled to receive an advance copy of The Queen’s Fortune from Allison Pataki, her upcoming novel about Désirée Clary, Napoleon’s first love, who went on to become Queen of Sweden. I was absolutely obsessed with Anne-Marie Selinko’s YA novel, Désirée, circa 5th grade, so it was such a treat to take another look at the fascinating life of a woman who had a front row seat for most of the major upheavals of the early nineteenth century, but was herself really something of a girl next door.
Someone, somewhere, mentioned Josephine Tey, so, of course, I had to go back and re-read Brat Farrar, which holds up just as well on a re-read as it did initially. This is one of Tey’s stand alone novels, in which an orphan is offered the chance to impersonate the missing (presumed dead) heir of a minor English estate, but discovers that the situation is far trickier than he could have imagined. As always, with Tey, both the writing and the characterizations are absolutely gorgeous, and it’s written with a subtle, sly wit.
I was meant to be reading more ARCs now, but I made the mistake of wandering into Barnes & Noble and coming out again with two Georgette Heyer mystery novels I somehow never read before in beautiful new Art Deco editions from Sourcebooks. So, really, how could one resist?
What have you been reading this week?