detective fiction

A Reader’s Guide to Devon, Bath, and London

If you’re like me, you love reading about places you travel to. Or want to travel to.

I was much busier than I expected to be (or I was nodding off on the train, or watching the scenery pass by), or I would have read more of these.

On my recent vacation to England, I was forced by necessity (a wedding) to establish a vacation base for the majority of my stay in the Devon countryside. Since I was so near, I dropped into Bath for a few days, before spending my last night in London (because trains aren’t always reliable, and getting the train to the airport on the same day I needed to fly out just seemed too risky).

Despite the distractions of exploring the outdoors, meeting up with old friends, touring tangible history, and watching British TV in hotel bedrooms, I managed to get some reading done – and to put together a list of ideal books to read to set the tone of travels to these places.

Turn the page for my guide to reading for Devon, Bath, and London.

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Historical New York Comes Alive in “Seven for a Secret”

17465443Seven for a Secret by Lyndsay Faye
G.P. Putnam’s Sons: September 17, 2013 (Historical Fiction; Historical Mystery)

I’d go there again!
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“There’s been a robbery.”
“What’s been stolen?” I asked.
“My family,” she answered me (p. 6).

Seven for a Secret is the second in Faye’s Timothy Wilde Mysteries trilogy. In Gods of Gotham Tim Wilde reluctantly took up the profession of copper star for the newly formed police force of New York. Flush with the success of events from the first book, young Tim is admittedly confident about his skills as a copper when Seven for a Secret begins. Six months have passed since the previous book, and Tim has settled into his job and has experienced success after success for his particular talent of solving crimes after they’ve happened. However, when a young black woman, Lucy Adams, burst into his office reporting that her family has been stolen, Tim’s convictions of what’s right will be sorely tested. (more…)

“The Gods of Gotham” Exceeds Expectations

11890816The Gods of Gotham by Lyndsay Faye
Putnam Adult: March 15, 2012 (Historical Fiction; Historical Mystery)

Outstanding Adventure
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Becoming a policeman of the Sixth Ward of the city of New York was an unwelcome surprise to me.

It’s not the work I imagined myself doing at twenty-seven, but then again I’d bet all the other police would tell it the same, since three months ago this job didn’t exist (p. 7).

The Gods of Gotham was a fantastic, gritty and engrossing read. Not only are readers introduced to complicated and compelling characters, but also the immersed in the historical period of 1845 New York, and it’s not pretty.

Timothy Wilde tends bar, makes a good living, and is on the verge of making his intentions know to his beloved, Mercy Underhill. When a fire rips through his workplace and home, leaving him scarred, Tim finds himself without a living and his savings gone. Tim’s older brother Valentine, a politically connected man, secures Tim a new vocation, one that he claims Tim will take to “like a bird to air”. Timothy Wilde reluctantly finds himself one of the first copper stars of the newly formed police force of New York. (more…)

On the ninth day of Christmas, we take you away from it all…

winter getaway titles… with nine books that will have you slavering for white sand beaches, bright sunshine, and hot deserts. Or, they might help you get away from the cold wintery weather you’re probably experiencing.

What follows is a painstaking list (painstaking because apparently I don’t read many books set in hot places or seasons), a somewhat random selection of books that I hope are well-suited to helping readers escape from winter weather and suffering. Runs the gamut of genres, with nonfiction, rom-com, fantasy, thriller, historical fiction, and science fiction. (more…)