The Anatomist’s Wife (Lady Darby, Bk 1)
by Anna Lee Huber
This was so much fun! A mystery set in the 1830 Scotland highlands (and it was high time for a genre change for me). It is told in first person by Lady Darby. A woman who was married to an anatomist, and who was forced by her husband to paint pictures of musculature and other dissections of the human body, which he took full credit for, of course. Once it was found out she was the artist, she is feared and her character maligned, but she is now being called upon to assist in an investigation of a murder that happens at her sister’s castle during a weekend (or longer, they always hosted parties for days out in the country). She is sharp, thoughtful and completely naive. A wonderful and appropriate for a “let’s find out who did it and how to investigate a murder together with the reader” type of combination for a mystery heroine.
The intrigue is high, the censure sharp and mean and the stakes, life or death. If you like regency and mystery, mixed with a little historical fiction, you can’t go wrong here. Lady Darby is spunky, the politics of the era keep her confined, but she works with what she is given. I love that her knowledge works both for and against her and society is full of idiots. A good mystery of “who did the murder and why”. I figured out who it had to be kind of early on, but there were still some surprises and it was all solid. The mystery is pretty good, it is of course someone hanging out at the party. I mean, that is what you expect. Which of the political and ambitious animals was it? Her reputation is seriously on the line, with a tiny bit flirting mixed in for good measure. Looks like there is a promise of a love interest down the series line.
Anyway, I enjoyed it and have the second one so will have to read it soon to see what murder/death/kill Lady Darby solves next. 3.5 – 4 stars.
I think the end of this year is on a Merry Go Round being run by little kids chanting “Faster!” What the heck? Or are we in the middle part of a whirlpool about to get sucked down? LOL, whatever the answer, time speeds up at the end of the year. Still lots to do and a quickly approaching deadline. Anyway, I decided I should post this picture I took with my phone in Brooklyn, NY a few weeks back. The year is setting, and it is beautiful.
I just need to remember that. Lots to do, people to see, fun to be had, presents to buy, cookies to bake, run, run, run. I am one of those crazy people trying to go faster. But I must remember to stop and look at the golden light, the pinks and purples and endless skies. We are alive and the world is fabulous.
One of the books I read on my Florida work trip was an ARC of…
I Am Princess X by Cherie Priest
This is a YA read with a comic strip integrated with the story. I have another one of those on my TBR called In The Shadows which is gorgeous. You get the benefit of graphic novel with story around it. Sort of like Allie Brosh’s essays (which I also absolutely loved and highly recommend, they made me laugh so hard my husband kicked me out of the room).
This story has a superhero feel, fairly improbable but lots of action, a bit of a mystery and it was just plain enjoyable to read. Though, it deals with some rough subjects. Murder of a parent (superhero!), death and destruction, and lots of cyber hacking. It really made me want to run around Seattle though. It integrates the city, using existing topography as clues, almost making it a character as well. If you ever noticed the Obey Giant stickers and artwork, which you should be able to find in most urban settings, this book started out with me thinking about good old Andre as stickers of Princess X start showing up around town.
The ARC was missing some of the comic strip pictures, they were simply described so I think I would like to get my hands on the published book at some point.
Lots of danger, intrigue, clue finding, strong female characters and crazy feelings. It is a load of fun and if you like superheroes and comic books, check this story out. 4 stars.
Delia’s Shadow (Delia Martin, Bk 1) by Jaime Lee Moyer
A lovely blend of historical fiction and paranormal all taking place in San Francisco, yes!! Right there, this book has me. Delia sees ghosts and escaped San Francisco to find peace from all the ghosts created after the fires and earthquake of 1806. But one determined ghost has found her where she fled, and gets her to return to help find a serial killer.
A bit of romance, some mysteries about some of the characters are revealed and a fabulous spiritualist is enlisted to help with the whole mess. Lots of fun. The characters are a bit snarky while maintaining their social standing. So, everything is PC, but they sneak little love glances every once in a while. And the serial killer is pretty mean, so he doesn’t care about society’s morays. It is interesting and fun. If you like historical fiction and paranormal, you can’t go wrong here. It looks like there is another book in the series coming out soon, we will see where it goes, I am interested!
I just returned from a fabulous work trip. I spent a whole day handing out extra balls and drinks on a golf course. It was pretty.
I spent time on the beach. It was warm.
I ran a selfie contest, many were silly. I did a ton of work, but that is not as much fun to list. And I finished FOUR books! Woo hoo. I am currently writing reviews, but that will take me a bit, so I thought I would let you all know, I haven’t flaked out yet!
In case you were wondering, I read:
- The Bone Key by Sarah Monette
- Dragons Wild by Robert Asprin
- Half-Resurrection Blues by Daniel Jose Older
- After the Red Rain by Barry Lyga
I found this poem recently and thought I might share with all the other readers/adventurers out there.
Enjoy your weekend!
Oh Ove, you grumpy old coot. How I enjoyed reading about you.
A Man Called Ove is a lovely, quiet story about a man who is not very happy. All of his reasons life was enjoyable are gone. But the story is not maudlin, even though some very sad things happen and it deals with some very sad issues. It is kind of a celebration of life, of following through and reaching out before it is too late, and follows a man who on the outside looks and sounds mean but is wonderful inside.
How this book didn’t delve into a sappy, depressing Oprah pick, I don’t know (no dissing on Oprah, but you have to admit she likes them quite emotional and often depressing). Most likely because like Ove, the writing is a little bit spartan. He doesn’t dwell, he moves. He doesn’t bash you over the head, he sets it out there and has slightly humorous things happen at just the right time. Lots of misunderstandings without it being slap-stick. I will admit, I did cry, but I laughed a lot too and smiled hard while reading. You know, that stupid smile you get and everyone wants to know why, but you can’t explain it without sounding like a maniac? That smile.
Ove is a man who wonders why joggers have to be so pretentious and dress like they are gymnasts just to shuffle down the street. He looks beyond the facade and expects those around him to do the same. Or doesn’t care much what you think, actually. He is a force of nature, yet can be predictable as clockwork.
It was a lovely story, my bookclub is reading it right now and I hope they enjoy it too. I can’t wait to get my hands on My Grandmother Wants to Say She’s Sorry. That also sounds amazing. 5 stars. :)