Weekly Reading Round-Up

Happy Friday– and happy New Year!

I know I read a great deal during the what-day-is-it-again blur of the holidays, but only two books stood out: Charlotte Vassell’s The Other Half and Emily Lloyd-Jones’s The Bone Houses.

I hadn’t expected to love either of these– the back copy gave me a very different sense of what they were going to be.  I’m so glad I was wrong.

The Other Half, a murder mystery set among a group of Oxford alums and the detective who must investigate them, felt like a cross between really good old school British chick lit (anyone else read Kate Saunders’s The Marrying Game back in the day?) and an episode of The Chelsea Detective, with bursts of Heyer-esque humor and a knack for a snort-out-loud turn of phrase.

As for The Bone Houses, it isn’t nearly as grim as the cover and the title make it appear.  It’s a good, old-fashioned fantasy quest, as the heroine (a grave-digger) and the hero (a cartographer) have to plunge deep into a dangerous, enchanted forest in search of a mythical cauldron to save the heroine’s family from both penury and reanimated corpses.  If you’re someone who wishes there were more Margaret Rogerson books in the world, this is very much in that vein, and just as compelling.

What have you been reading this week?


  1. Pat Dupuy on January 12, 2024 at 2:27 pm

    I just read an ARC that I loved! When Grumpy Met Sunshine by Charlotte Stein. Grumpy rich man of few words retired footballer meets with ghostwriter human sunshine. Loved their teasing back and forth and his Manchester expressions.

  2. Elizabeth (AKA Miss Eliza) on January 12, 2024 at 7:47 pm

    I’ve read SO MANY MURDER MYSTERIES. Like, ALL OF THEM it feels like.

    The Christmas Guest by Peter Swanson: Nice and spooky, set in the 80s, a girl thinks she’s invited to the dream Christmas. It isn’t. There may be ghosts…

    Murder for Christmas by Francis Duncan: A unique twist on what’s really happening at big country manors for Christmas. Hint, it’s more than just death.

    The White Priory Murders by Carter Dickson: Insane locked room combined with Jacobean history. The most ‘Clue’ like of murders I’ve read in awhile.

    Murder on the Christmas Express by Alexandra Benedict: Needed a trigger warning. So much suffering and PTSD. Not cozy at all.

    Auld Acquaintance by Sofia Slater: A fun Scottish island retelling of And Then There Were None. VERY Gothic.

    Everyone in My Family Has Killed Someone by Benjamin Stevenson: Loose definition of “kill” and overly tryhard with the whole trying to abide by Golden Age fair play rules.

    The Winter Spirits: Such spooky tales!

  3. Joan on January 13, 2024 at 8:00 pm

    Enchantment Of Ravens which sat on tbr shelf for years and it is GREAT! Just finished The Black Feathers by Constance and Gwenyth Little which I enjoyed so much that Im ordering several more from Amazon. Also can’t wait to read Mimi Matthews Lily of Ludgate which comes out Tuesday.

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