Book Review: Measuring the World by Daniel Kehlmann #GermanLitMonth

The delightful, clever and entertaining Measuring the World by Daniel Kehlmann (translated by Carol Brown Janeway) tells us the stories of two eccentric geniuses—the explorer, geographer and polymath Alexander von Humboldt and mathematician and physicist, Carl Friedrich Gauss. Our story begins in September 1828 when the German Scientific Congress is being held in Berlin, and…

Book Review: Death in the Stocks by Georgette Heyer

The first of the mysteries featuring Superintendent Hannasyde published in 1935 was a very enjoyable read with plenty of humour, eccentric but fun characters, sparkling dialogue, and a pretty good mystery as well. Our story opens in the village of Ashleigh Green, where Constable Dickenson is returning from night patrol. In the stocks, he spots…

Centenary Post: Book Review: The Case of the Gilded Fly by Edmund Crispin

2 October 2021 marks the 100th birthday of Robert Bruce Montgomery, composer and writer, who wrote detective stories under the pseudonym Edmund Crispin, and musical scores including for the early films in the Carry On series. To celebrate, I read The Case of the Gilded Fly (1944), the first book to feature Crispin’s detective, Oxford…

Book Review: Cat Flap by Alan S. Cowell

My thanks to Agora Books and NetGalley for a review copy of this book. Cat Flap is a slightly fantastical, quirky, humorous but also slightly over the top novel. Successful corporate executive, Dolores Tremayne, finds part of herself in her family’s cat, X (named so by her daughter, since it sounds ‘mysterious’) while her human…

Book Review: Bewildering Cares by Winifred Peck

After a long time, I found myself reading a book from among my own books (the last was Daphne du Maurier’s The Breaking Point back in May for Daphne du Maurier Reading week), rather than my NetGalley pile (the only others of my own books I’ve read since have been Agatha Christies and all revisits).…

Book Review: Death and Croissants by Ian Moore

My thanks to Farrago Books and NetGalley for a review copy of this book. Death and Croissants is the first of the Follet Valley Mysteries and is a crazy, quirky, comic, and slightly over the top cosy mystery. In the book, we meet Richard Ainsworth, a middle-aged Englishman who has moved to the bucolic Loire…

Book Review: The Semi-detached House by Emily Eden

Over April and May I revisited Emily Eden’s The Semi-detached House with a Goodreads group. This is Eden’s second novel, though published first in 1859. Emily Eden (1797–1869) was born into an aristocratic family (her father William Eden, 1st Baron Auckland was a diplomat and politician (also author of a book on Penal Law) while…

Book Review: The Fargenstropple Case by Lia London

What a crazy read this turned out to be, but a good bit of fun. The book opens with newly promoted Chief Inspector Terrence Morgan in his office when Millicent Fargenstropple literally bursts in (and the door with her) with a problem—a rather odd one for Lady Chatterley the cat, usually quite placid, has been…

Book Review: A Case of Blackmail in Belgravia by Clara Benson

A Case of Blackmail in Belgravia (2016) is the first of a series of five books (so far) featuring Freddie Pilkington-Soames and set in 1920s–1930s London (at least the first is in London). Freddie was first introduced in another series by the author, the Angela Marchmont mysteries some of which I’ve read and enjoyed very…