Books 61 – 66 2013

Books 61 – 63 – The Glamourist Histories, by Mary Robinette Kowal

The idea is “Jane Austen in a world where Magic exists”.  So I’m in.  The magic is called “Glamour” and is primarily used for art.  But there are other uses and I expect they will develop with the world of the novels as they progress.  Our heroine Jane is , of course, a rather plain near-spinster who is a very talented glamourist.  Enter the curmudgeon who is equally as talented.  Stir and bake.  After the first book, I wrote on Goodreads that the homage to Jane Austen was a bit thick.  But the hero and heroine marry and then there is a sequel!  And another!  They even get a bit dark with some mystery and intrigue.  So the narrative grows past Jane Austen.  Unfortunately, the publisher has decided to make each book cover more bodice-ripping than the last.  I was embarrassed to be walking around with that third one and the fourth looks like the trend shall continue.  A fabulous series nonetheless and the first time since I started seriously using the library again that I thought, “Damn.  I sorta want a copy of that”.

Books 64-65 – Two Hercule Poirot Novels, by Agatha Christie

I do love Poirot.  However, Murder in Mesopotamia was narrated by an incredibly annoying character and it took away from the charm.  The mystery was pretty decent, though.  I guessed the solution to Death on the Nile although to be fair, that’s probably because it has been rehashed about a hundred times in random TV shows.  But the actor that does Poirot with the BBC did the reading and that made it even more charming.



Book 66 – First Family: Abigail and John Adams, by Joseph Ellis

So.  Dude who did the fantastic Founding Brothers, and a biography of Jefferson (haven’t read it yet) writes about the partnership of John and Abigail.  It was gratifying to know that Ellis also seems to think that Jefferson was a two-faced..nevermind.  But otherwise, I found this rather less thrilling than I imagined.  I gave it three stars on Goodreads and wrote: “There wasn’t a whole lot here that I hadn’t heard before, but the angle was interesting. It spent much more text on the time the Adamses spent apart than the later years (like in the White House) that they spent together – because the primary source was the letters they wrote to each other.

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