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?