Books Read in the Month of July
For the month of July I actually read more "pages" then usual! But that was all due to one book.
42..Close To Home.......................Peter Robinson......(400 pgs)
As this intense and intricately crafted puzzler develops, blending fiction with a bit of fact (the Kray brothers, who ran a criminal ring in London's East End during the mid-20th century, play off-camera roles here), Robinson explores Banks's troubled relationship with his parents, especially his working-class father, who "had never approved of his choice of career." He also raises doubts about a famed copper who’d originally tackled the Marshall case, involves Banks romantically with a damaged detective whose investigative diligence threatens her safety, and shows Cabbot as someone better and stronger than merely Banks's protégé. Working with themes of lost youth and the dark secrets hidden in small towns, Robinson delivers in this 13th Banks novel a police procedural of remarkable human depth
43..Fatal Enquiry.......................Will Thomas.........(293 pgs)
Brimming with wit, atmosphere, and unforgettable characters, FATAL ENQUIRY reintroduces private enquiry agent Cyrus Barker and his assistant, Thomas Llewellyn, and their unforgettable world of Victorian London.
Some years ago, Cyrus Barker matched wits with Sebastian Nightwine, an aristocrat and sociopath, and in exposing his evil, sent Nightwine fleeing to hide from justice somewhere in the far corners of the earth. The last thing Barker ever expected was to encounter Nightwine again-but the British government, believing they need Nightwine's help, has granted him immunity for his past crimes, and brought him back to London. Nightwine, however, has more on his mind than redemption-and as Barker and Llewellyn set out to uncover and thwart Nightwine's real scheme, they find themselves in the gravest danger of their lives.
44..The Quincoux........................Charles Palliser....(800 pgs)
From Publishers Weekly
The epic length of this first novel--nearly 800 densely typeset pages--should not put off readers, for its immediacy is equal to its heft. Palliser, an English professor in Scotland, where this strange yet magnetic work was first published, has modeled his extravagantly plotted narrative on 19th-century forms--Dickens's Bleak House is its most obvious antecedent--but its graceful writing and unerring sense of timing revivifies a kind of novel once avidly read and surely now to be again in demand. The protagonist, a young man naive enough to be blind to all clues about his own hidden history (and to the fact that his very existence is troubling to all manner of evildoers) narrates a story of uncommon beauty which not only brings readers face-to-face with dozens of piquantly drawn characters at all levels of 19th-century English society but re-creates with precision the tempestuous weather and gnarly landscape that has been a motif of the English novel since Wuthering Heights . The suspension of disbelief happens easily, as the reader is led through twisted family trees and plot lines. The quincunx of the title is a heraldic figure of five parts that appears at crucial points within the text (the number five recurs throughout the novel, which itself is divided into five parts, one for each of the family galaxies whose orbits the narrator is pulled into). Quintuple the length of the ordinary novel, this extraordinary tour de force also has five times the ordinary allotment of adventure, action and aplomb
45..Somebody I Used to Know.............David Bell..........(432 pgs)
The breakout author of The Forgotten Girl and Cemetery Girl, “one of the brightest and best crime fiction writers of our time” (Suspense Magazine) delivers a new novel about a man who is haunted by a face from his past....
When Nick Hansen sees the young woman at the grocery store, his heart stops. She is the spitting image of his college girlfriend, Marissa Minor, who died in a campus house fire twenty years earlier. But when Nick tries to speak to her, she acts skittish and rushes off.
The next morning the police arrive at Nick’s house and show him a photo of the woman from the store. She’s been found dead, murdered in a local motel, with Nick’s name and address on a piece of paper in her pocket.
Convinced there's a connection between the two women, Nick enlists the help of his college friend Laurel Davidson to investigate the events leading up to the night of Marissa’s death. But the young woman’s murder is only the beginning...and the truths Nick uncovers may make him wish he never doubted the lies.
46..Where Serpents Sleep................C.S. Harris.........(368 pgs)
Hero Jarvis, while doing research at Magdalene House, a refuge run by the Quakers for prostitutes in Regency England, narrowly escapes with her life when eight women living there are viciously killed, their murders concealed by arson. As one of the young women died in her arms, Hero decides she must determine why this victim, clearly wellborn, was working as a prostitute and why someone wanted her dead. Unfamiliar with murder investigations, she enlists the help of Sebastian St. Cyr, who has spent the last eight months trying unsuccessfully to deal with the loss of his lover. Sebastian, intrigued by the case and seeing the opportunity to anger Hero’s father, his sworn enemy, agrees to help her. The two investigate, both separately and together, in the slums and mansions of London, uncovering corruption and almost losing their lives on several occasions. The vividly described sights and sounds of Regency London, the stormy relationship between the well-developed main characters, and a complex mystery add to this fourth in the St. Cyr series.
This was a good group of books.. all of them!
Peter Robinson and Will Thomas were both new authors to me but I enjoyed them both, and have managed to get two more books by Robinson. Now patiently waiting in the mountain of tbr books.
I have read a number of books by David Bell and the ease of reading his books keeps me going back for more. He's an author you should check out if you have never read any of his books.
C.S Harris has quickly entered my group of authors for books that concern detective work but Sebastian is NOT a detective. Something of which I like so that things are not always the same format.
Charles Palliser. What can I say? I've read two other of his books and liked them all, but I have to admit that I like Quincoux best of all. Being an 800 page book with smaller print than my eyes enjoy it did sit on the shelf for a while. But once I started reading it, though it took me longer to read, I totally enjoyed it. Written in the style of Charles Dickens, but without quite as many English words that I many not have been sure of, I was sad to have it end.