Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Crime reading spree....

Been a while since my last post - due to combination of work and holidays, but don't worry I have been reading!

Doing some serious criminal fiction the past month - it's a crime reading spree. Some recommended reads include:

The First Fingerprint - Xavier-Marie Bonnot. Great crime thriller set in Marseille and follows the hunt for a serial killer with Commandant Michel de Palma. I love the way Bonnot makes Marseille a character in the novel, with his wonderful descriptions of the city and its inhabitants. There is a nice twist which I didn't see coming and also by the end you actually care about the characters too. Here's hoping for more adventures of Commandant de aPalm!!

Gone to Ground - John Harvey. British crime procedural that has two great lead characters - Will Grayson and Helen Walker. Their relationship and committment to solving crimes and each other makes the book worth reading. Nicely done. Am off to find Harvey's other books.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Historical fiction - The Virgin's Lover

Just finished Phillipa Gregory's The Virgin's Lover.

Fascinating read. I'm a big fan of this period of history - the Tudor period (1485 and 1603,). There is really is nothing like escaping to a period with a virgin queens, treason, murder and lots and lots of horse riding!

I'm finding a real satisfaction and enjoyment with historical fiction at the moment.

The characters in this book are especially well drawn and believable. Gregory is able to bring out the ambivalence of the men who supported Elizabeth have towards her as the 'weaker' sex.

I loved the character of William Cecil - uber machiavellian political adviser. Scary thing is that he would slot perfectly into a ministerial adviser role in government today!

Will most likely read Gregory's other books in her Tudor series:
  • The Other Boleyn Girl
  • The Queen's Fool
  • The Constant Princess
  • The Boleyn Inheritance
  • The Other Queen
Side bar: Dance Your PhD winner announced - this is hilarious! And who said a PhD was all hard work? Too bad the competition was limited to the science, just imagine what you could with humanities topics!