Skip to main content

Recent Highlights

photo from Unsplash

It's been rather a long time since I last posted, so I thought I'd do a recap of some recent reading highlights.

Fiction

I've been enjoying quite a few mystery/detective stories recently. I really enjoyed Death on the Cherwell by Mavis Doriel Hay, a murder mystery set in 1930s Oxford. St Peter's Fair and The Leper of St Giles, books four and five in Ellis Peters' Cadfael series, were also very good. Unnatural Death, the third Lord Peter Wimsey book by Dorothy L. Sayers, didn't quite live up to the others in the series I've read, but it was still enjoyable. A Plague on Both Your Houses by Susanna Gregory, set in medieval Cambridge, was good, but not really to my taste; it was a bit more thriller-y than the other books I've mentioned here, with lots of twists and turns and not knowing who to trust, which is not really my sort of thing, although it kept me reading to find out what would happen.

I've also read several lesser-known vintage novels: I really enjoyed A College Girl by Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey (although the title is slightly misleading, as not much of the story is set at college; it's more a coming-of-age tale); The Girls of St. Wode's by L.T. Meade was also very enjoyable, and The Diary of a Goose Girl by Kate Douglas Wiggin was a quick, entertaining read (although rather lacking in plot).

Other books I enjoyed were A Walk Across the Sun by Corban Addison, several books in the Alice-Miranda series by Jacqueline Harvey, and The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun by J.R.R. Tolkien.

Non-Fiction

Mere Christianity and Letters to Malcolm by C.S. Lewis were both excellent (as Lewis always is). Misreading Scripture with Western Eyes by E. Randolph Richards and Brandon J. O'Brien gave me a lot to think about. Fierce Convictions by Karen Swallow Prior, a biography of Hannah More, was a great read; she is a fascinating person to read about.

Currently Reading

The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis (almost finished)
A Man of Some Repute by Elizabeth Edmondson
North Side of the Tree by Maggie Prince (just started, but really enjoying)
The Diamond of Drury Lane by Julia Golding
Charlotte Fairlie by D.E. Stevenson


Anticipating

Death in the Arena, the third books in the Roman Quests series by Caroline Lawrence, which comes out this week. I really enjoyed the first two books, so I'm looking forward to this one.


I've got a few reviews hanging around in my drafts that I'll probably post soon, so hopefully there'll be a rather shorter interval between this and my next post.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Top Ten Tuesday: Forgotten Classics

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Today's theme is Ten Hidden Gem Books in X Genre. I've decided go for classics, so I'm listing ten older books that have been mostly forgotten or that I think should be better known:
A Cathedral Courtshipby Kate Douglas Wiggin A sweet romantic tale combined with a tour of English cathedrals
The Heir of Redclyffe by Charlotte Mary Yonge A tragic Victorian bestseller
White Boots by Noel Streatfeild A story about family, friendship, and ice skating
The Story of the Treasure Seekers by E. Nesbit Six children determine to restore their family's fortunes - but things don't really go according to plan
Seven Sisters at Queen Anne's by Evelyn Smith Seven sisters go off to school for the first time,
Half Magic by Edward Eager A magic coin that only grants half of what you wish for - what could possibly go wrong?
Jane of Lantern Hillby L.M. Montgomery I've reviewed this recently here.
Young Bess by Margar…

October Books

I haven't done a monthly recap post for a while, but I haven't posted much lately so I thought I'd do a summary of what I've read this month. Firstly, I finally finished Lord of the Rings! I think it's been round about a year, perhaps just over, since I first picked up The Fellowship of the Ring. I tend to be very slow about reading long books - I need to take breaks to read other things in the middle - but I didn't quite expect to take so long to finish. I did enjoy it, and am partly tempted to start over again with FOTR, since it feels like an age since I read that. At any rate, I can now say that I have read it.
I made some progress with Mount TBR this month; I'm still hopelessly behind my goal of 24 books, but I did get a few off: The Return of the King (as mentioned above), Scarlet by Marissa Meyer, and Forged in the Fire by Ann Turnbull. Scarlet was a disappointment - despite having really enjoyed Cinder (last year), I found this a bit of a chore to …

Book Review: The Bookseller's Tale by Ann Swinfen

SummaryThe Bookseller's Tale is the first in a series of mysteries set in 14th-century Oxford. The book takes place a few years after the population has been decimated by the Black Death, the effects of which are still widely felt. Nicholas Elyot, the main character, is a bookseller who lost his wife to the plague. One day he finds the body of a student in the River Cherwell, and discovers that his death was not due to natural causes. The town authorities don't seem to have any interest in investigating the murder, but Nicholas and his friend Jordain Brinkylsworth, a member of the university, feel they owe it to the victim to find out. Thoughts  One of the big things I liked about this book was the historical detail - we find out quite a bit about medieval Oxford, the university, and particularly about Nicholas' work as a bookseller, which I found really interesting. Some readers might not enjoy these details as they mean there is a little less focus on the mystery, but I…