Georgette Heyer is considered one of the earliest modern romance writers. While I've read some of her romances, I tend to like her country house mysteries. They are cozy, which is not my normal mystery-sub-genre love, but it works.
I have no idea why PBS doesn't make a whole masterpiece mystery about them. I guess licensing won't allow it. Or perhaps there's some other reason I'm missing.
Chasing Trouble by Anne Stuart
Anne Stuart is probably one of my favorite authors. I tend to go to her when I get in a book slump (the Ice and Fire series usually). She bounces around different sub-genres in the romance genre, so she's done romantic-suspense, gothics, historical, contemporaries, etc. This one follows a bit of noir bent (in the sense that it plays with it).
I found this one in my local used bookstore, but some of her older releases can be rough to find! Sometimes she releases a kindle version, so that's been great. She has a lot of books out...like a lot. She's a reader's dream come true. I've seen this likened to Catspaw, and I can see it. It's a bit zanier than that one to me, but I get it!
I have not read any part of this series (the Phryne Fisher series) in order. I have some on my kindle (with the 1920s illustration type covers), some paperback (with the TV tie in covers, which I actually like) and one audiobook.
I'll be honest, some of the books I like quite well and some I don't love as much. I suppose it's because I started the TV series first so I'm quite in love with the actors portrayals. The books are different with the characterization and storylines. For instance, the romances that Miss Fisher has are vastly different and Dot's whole personality is different. The mysteries are much more fleshed out in the books, which can be thrilling. This particular book has some interesting sub-plots that don't make it into the TV show.
Also of note, Greenwood has done so much research into food, clothing, and lifestyle. At times, it veers into the cozy-extra detailed that I despise but overall, I enjoy Greenwood's writing and style.
This book takes place in Queenscliff, while Miss Fisher is on vacation with her family. There's a murder, missing gold, a movie shoot plagued with problems, a hair snatcher, and a group of surrealists.
Ah, I think hurricane season is totally starting. Well, I mean, it picks up around this time. Tropical Wave/Storm Fred flamed out and went away. Not that it would have really gotten to me to do any damage but sometimes we get some rain if they're strong enough. I mostly only panic if they're coming up the coast towards me.
Anyways, this book was quite fun. Catherine Ryan Howard is a new author to me but I really enjoyed this book. I picked it up because I saw the Edgar Sticker (it's been removed on that book). I tend to really enjoy Edgar Awards and Edgar Nominees. I also liked that the paperback that I picked up is taller than normal, I don't know why but it felt like it fit well within my hands.
Wildfire by Anne Stuart
Anne Stuart is such an "instant buy" author for me. Even the books she writes that I don't adore are solid 3 or 3.5 stars. That's pretty amazing.
Her "Fire" series is a spin-off from her "Ice" series. While the Ice Series is set in the UK as a home-base, the Fire series is based in America. Specifically in New Orleans, Louisiana. This is the third book in the series and introduces two new characters, both tangentially related to the infamous Committee, the shadow spy agency.
I have read a lot of 'ugh' books recently. UGH books. Books I did NOT like. It's been a struggle.
I did read the newest Janet Evanovich and while it's not quite like the earlier books (and there's still an annoying love triangle), it seemed less phoned in. I'm still not rushing out to buy her books but I'll pick the next up from the library.
I read this book a few weeks ago. It was a spur of the moment library book based totally on the cover. It's not my normal type of book to be fair, as it has some horror elements. It's really delightful. Well, horror infused delight? I read it all in one sitting because I was hooked.
Lucky Caller by Emma Mills
I have a feeling this hurricane season is going to be not fun. Mostly because that tiny little tropical storm (well, it did kill people, so not tiny) Claudette took me out for a week. I still have a twitchy eye from the migraine. UGH!
Anyways, I didn't get a lot of reading done this week because of it but I'm back in the saddle. I managed to get most of my mail sorted and my desk is a little more clear.
Let's get to the book! I think Emma Mills is one of those authors that I just enjoy. I discovered her through a book subscription and then kept up with her output. Lucky Caller is the last book I read from her. She (or the publisher) has changed the artwork cover, which is very annoying mid series but since her books are stand alone - I can deal with it. It is sad how they don't match (since the others do). Her old books were re-released with new covers so that's nice. For other people.
This is a YA contemporary romance, set in a large high school in the States. It features two friends who had drifted apart end up in the same group in their elective class.
Today is just not a "get dressed" day. I've been having a slow start. I had a doctor's appointment and apparently I'm Vitamin D deficient? So...I've been trying to go out in the sun a little. Which is odd because normally I try to stay way out of the sun!
This is the exciting book where Darcy and Georgie get married! Well, mostly. There is a mystery before the wedding, and there is some luck that Georgie falls into, and of course the wedding.
Well, I accidentally took a week off. I was supposed to go to the beach this weekend but the gas pipeline ransom thingy caused a rush on the gas stations (like all the people who panic when a hurricane comes and buy stupid crap in bulk...or all the toilet paper). So I just met a friend for lunch and shopping at Ulta.
Ulta was slammed too! Like, everyone was there getting their stockpile back up. I needed more foundation and perfume so it worked out just fine. It's too bad about the beach because the weather was perfect.
I'm not happy about any of the decoration decisions I've made in my home office/library set up. So I'm still working that out. It's just a mess in this room.
The book on review is called It's Always the Husband. I thought the blurb was interesting, although I figured it was most likely going to be more of a thriller than mystery led. It started slow but I think picked up at the end.
Rhys Bowen's Crowned and Dangerous (#10) and On Her Majesty's Frightfully secret SErvice (#11)
I've managed to stain my bathtub red and I think I'm going to have to bleach it to death to get it off. It was a bath bomb that did me in. I normally keep up with the tub better but I didn't really deep clean it after this bath because I was getting a migraine. And now it's set in a bit. Oh well.
I was just talking to a girl on bumble bff, we were discussing how nice it would be to have a month extra a year where we could just get stuff clean and all these extra chores done. Riveting stuff to be sure. There's just a backlog that doesn't seem to end.
Well, lets get on to the books. As we left the last one on a cliffhanger, it luckily resolves quite quickly. While both books begin in England, they move off to other areas. Both feature reoccurring characters and I quite enjoyed them.
I managed to get my kitchen mostly clean, it's still very dated in decor/looks but it's on the list for a renovation. I know some people managed to gut their house during Covid but I have not had the time to get that going. Also, I can't quite figure out what I want. Part of me wants a really basic white-neutral kitchen while the other part wants striking colored cabinets. Like black, green, or blue. Not yellow, orange, or red. Decisions!
Continuing on with this series. I've officially read all the books published in it so far (a new one is coming out...and I've put in a purchase for a pre-order). So one of these books takes place mostly in America and the other takes place back in London. They're both quite fun but I have to admit really enjoying the Queen of Hearts mostly for the Hollywood tie in. Malice at the Palace was also interesting, it has more of a true historical bent (far more royal as well).
I've started a new podcast that seems to have promise (or might be the weirdest thing I've ever listened to). This week is already starting oddly. I started the past weekend with a migraine, but was able to figure out my "trigger" for it fairly fast. Since I caused the migraine, it was pretty bad and my sleep schedule is still pretty messed up.
The cause of my migraine was carpet cleaner! Apparently this is known but I didn't know because I've just not been around when the carpets were cleaned. I bought a little Bissell machine because my old one died after more than a decade and I had spilled foundation on my white carpet. So, I guess it was worth it.
Anyways, lets get back to the books!
I've given the other Rhys Bowen series a try but I can't get into them as much (I think they're more "cozy" in genre than this one?). These are from her "Her Royal Spyness" Series, which is so amusing for me as I'm not a monarchist and they are cozy. Cozy mysteries are not my jam. I get so utterly frustrated with them for silly reasons. During Covid, I gave some of the cozy books in my TBR pile a go and it seemed to work out better (well, I only hated most of them).
This was a poor introduction, but anyways. The next two books in the series don't take place in the UK as much. Instead, they take place on the European continent. Many of our favorite characters make appearances. This is also the first appearance of Rhys Bowen taking themes from classic literature. I enjoy retellings or hints to the classics for the most part, so I enjoyed it thoroughly.
I'm going to try and give them both good reviews (as in, me writing the review well) as I have a migraine starting and it's rudely not getting better even though I took medicine. This weather is going to be the death of me.
I've been trying more podcasts. I stumbled upon a design and arts one but I'm not too sure I can get with it. A lot of the guests are more woo-woo (design wise and medically) than I'm comfortable with. I think I avoid the woo because when you get sick, people push nonsense on you all the time and it's so annoying and unhelpful. No, your MLM shakes/oils/weight bands are not going to cure me.
I always know when Dr. Oz is on TV peddling bullshit, because someone calls me to tell me about some silly "cure" that works wonders and encourages me to try it. I lost my patience with my Aunt when she suggested I snort pepper (for real!). I asked if she even liked me! Who wants to willingly snort pepper when my actual, real doctor has prescribed real medicine that works?!
That was a bit of a tangent wasn't it. Whoops. Okay, this series! I have some of Rhys Bowen's other series. I couldn't really get into her Evans mysteries, set in Wales. I also am not totally sure on her Molly Malone series but I have a few more books to give a whirl on that so I might change my mind. There's just a form of a love triangle, which I don't adore. It's not a trope I give a lot of time too. I have finished this series, well, all the books that have been written so far. I still think its really fun and I hope to continue it in the future.
Alright, I'm going to intersperse these with other books, but I'll probably do two at a time. More or less. The first book is a novella and the second book is actually the first official book.