Every night Conor O’Malley has the nightmare. Every night. But tonight something is different. Tonight there is a new monster. A new nightmare. And Conor isn’t sure if this is a dream or not. But either way, this is the monster he was fearing. This monster, the yew tree, tells him that it will tell him three stories. And then Conor will tell the monster a story. A true story. And if he doesn’t, then the monster will eat him alive.
Author: Naomi Novik
Temeraire series #5
I hesitated before starting this book, wondering if I should reread the others in the series, it has been a while after all. But I have so many books waiting to be read that I decided to jump straight in and hope that it would all come back to me. And it did, almost the second I started reading the first page the whole world of Temeraire came back to me and I remember just how enjoyable these books are.
For those of you who have never read any of these books the first thing you need to know is that they are set in Napoleonic Europe, England. And have dragons. It is like Sharp meets Pern. Only better.
I first came across a mention of Robert M. Saplosky on Metafilter and I was a little interested, so I did what any librarian might do, and ordered one of his books. To be honest my expectations weren’t all that high. My personal reading challenge for 2010 might be to read more non-fiction, but at the same time I know that non-fiction often requires more concentration and time than fiction, and then there was the fact that Sapolsky is a neurobiologist, and to be totally honest I really didn’t think it’d be all that interested. But I challenged myself, and was I ever glad that I did because from the opening page this really is a delight to read. …
Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes have returned home to Sussex in order to enjoy the new year, but soon enough they travel to London to visit Holmes’ brother, Mycroft, whose health is not the best. While there he suggests that perhaps they might look into a case for him. A possibly-missing person. In India.
Of course they head off, and the person they are looking for, none other than Kimball O’Hara, known to many from Rudyard Kipling’s Kim.
We’ve been on a bit of an “animal-human relationship” kick at work lately. I chose this one at random one afternoon. It is the second book that the author Jon Katz wrote about his life after meeting Devon/Orson, the border collie. he has many others detailing his life with other dogs. But Orson was his “once in a lifetime” dog. The one that changes your life.
This is one I picked up because I’d seen positive mentions on a few blogs, I think Nymeth’s post was the one that prompted the purchase. So it came with a little bit of hype. That being said, I don’t really read reviews before I read a book, just skim the opening paragraph for a sense of what the reviewer thought of the book, so I wasn’t all hyped out. And Blankets did live up to those positive reviews.
I first heard about this book on Metafilter when Susan Klebold, mother of one of the killers, had an article in O Magazine. Before that I had never been interested in the shooting. Not beyond the evils of rubber-necking at some one else’s tragedy. But the discussion there seemed to suggest that this was a well-thought out and reasoned look at the community surrounding the school, as well as the killers themselves. And the author, Cullen, believed that the popular myths about the shootings shouldn’t stand unchallenged.
I’m continuing to work my way through the Mary Russell novels; I slowed down a bit for two reasons. One, I don’t want to overload on the ‘verse. Two, the library ran out of the series. Well, it skipped the next so I took my time with O Jerusalem while I boughtJustice Hall for my own shelves. I will at some point go order all this series, I really do think that they are books you can very easily reread and enjoy time and again.
Author: Mary Russell
If you’ve read my reviews of the other books in this series you’ll already know that I really love them. If you haven’t here’s a quick recap; Sherlock Holmes, a real historical figure retired to Sussex in order to tend to his bees. While there he met Mary Russell; a somewhat moody, if quite brilliant, teenager and took her under his wing. She became his apprentice and later his wife. Errr, spoiler alert! In this, the fourth in the series, Sherlock sends Russell a telegram summoning her to Dartmoor and the moor that was the setting for The Hound of the Baskervilles. There are reports of another ghostly beast roaming the countryside and an old friend of Holmes would like him to investigate. Especially when a man is found dead on the moor.
The more I read of this series the more I come to love the characters, and indeed the whole set-up. Mary Russell is such a believable character, and King’s Holmes is just perfect.
The mystery at the heart of this novel concerns the death of Dorothy Ruskin. An archaeologist working in Jerusalem, she met up with Russell and Holmes when they travelled the area back in book one. In this book she comes to visit them, bringing with her an exquisite wooden box which contains a parchment on which is written a letter, from Mary of Magdala to her sister. Was it really written by the infamous Mary Magdalen? And was the car accident that killed her really an accident?
Author: Laurie R. King
A Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes mystery #2
I’ve enjoyed the other books in this series that I’ve read, but this one I loved. Totally loved it.
It is 1921 and our hero, Mary Russell, has finished her undergraduate course at Oxford. She is also about to come into her inheritance. Her life on the brink of being totally her own. No longer a ward of her aunt’s; she will be able to live as she chooses. But how will she choose, and what does she want to do with her life? Will she pursue an academic career with her interest in theology? Or does her future lie with Holmes and the life of a detective?
Author: Laurie R. King
A Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes mystery #1
I read the most recent of this series recently, and really enjoyed it, so of course I had to pick up the first in the series and get introduced to the characters properly. I just couldn’t shake the impression that I was missing out on so much when I read The language of bees. And, of course, one should always begin at the beginning. It is a very good place to start, or so I’ve heard.