Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Foreign Bodies- David Wishart- Preorder now!

"Ancient Roman sleuth Marcus Corvinus is despatched to Gaul on a personal mission for the emperor."
My very first David Wishart book so I was happy to have had the opportunity to read it via NetGalley. Ancient Rome and Roman Britain are favorite time periods for me and Gaul fo the period was described well. Travel was horribly slow so it was amazing the trip was undertaken.I looked up that area of Gaul on maps as I was not familiar with how one would sail from Rome to Gaul. I learned a lot!
Solving the murder was complicated apparently and had many twists and turns! More bodies turned up to perhaps complicate Marcus' mission. The ending was a bit unexpected so that was a plus. One minus for me was the slang, a more moderate dialogue could work, I think. Recommended to those who like ancient historical mysteries.

Michael Jecks - Rebellions Message- New series!

 I have read perhaps four of Michael Jecks books before this one and liked the Templars characters a bit better than Jack. That being said, I think the attention to period detail was quite good especially the portrayal of Queen Mary as dumpy with fading reddish hair.

The publisher's blurb had this to say:"Introducing Elizabethan cutpurse and adventurer Jack Blackjack in the first of a brand-new historical mystery series..In fact, almost everyone seems to be after Jack Blackjack. " Wow wasn't that the truth! I had a hard time following the pursuers of Jack as they popped in and out of his presence, sometimes in succession. 

I am happy to say that Jack evades all the would be assassins and lives to set the stage for the rest of the series. How is that possible? Well it seems to be perceived that he vanquished all his pursuers with his own hands, although he detests bloodshed, so he is set up to be a paid assassin himself.

The images of the fighting between the rebel army and the defenders of London were chilling but surely quite accurate. Recommended for those who enjoy this era 

Thursday, June 2, 2016

One Corpse Too Many- Ellis Peters- Book #2 of Brother Cadfael ~ my 5 Star reread ~

"An ingenious killer disposes of a strangled corpse on a battlefield. Brother Cadfael discovers the body, and must then piece together disparate clues"

I am rereading all of the Brother Cadfael books in order to get a more coherent look at the series, which is a top favorite.. I thought I read this years ago but did not remember any of it so perhaps not.

It was wonderful to read about how he and Hugh Beringar made their acquaintance, although it is often alluded to. A sad and desperate time in England with King Stephen and Empress Matilda warring over the throne. About Shropshire I learned this: "Historically, the county has been known as Shropshire as well as by its older, Norman-derived name of Salop." Since my L'Enfant family was here at some early stage from Normandy, it speaks to me.

Cadfael's evolution from soldier and adventurer in the Crusades to monk in Shrewsbury gets fleshed out even more. Love this series and understand why it was made into a series of TV movies.