Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Skystone

This was a book borrowed from a friend - lucky it wasn't a purchase because once again I realized halfway through that I'd read it already at some point. But if you like historical fiction about Roman Britain (this book is actually the first of a series, and a precursor to the King Arthur story) you'll enjoy this one.

The only quibble I have? I find it a bit hard to believe that the Romans wouldn't have known what comets were (you'll see).

Monday, March 07, 2011

A Vengeful Longing

By R.N. Morris, a sequel to a previous book which I think I should now read.

This murder mystery takes place in tsarist St. Petersburg in the 1860s. There have been recent reforms but the country is still very much locked into class divisions and corruption. Our detective is Porfiry Petrovich, who was a character in Dostoyevski's Crime and Punishment (which I think awaits me on my list of 100 Must-Read Novels). In some ways he reminded me of D.S. Dalziel from Reginald Hill's Dalziel and Pascoe series, though not quite as rude to his underlings.

It opens with the poisoning of a doctor's wife and son and of course other murders crop up which turn out to all be connected. A good read in my opinion.

The Navigator

Still reading the books I bought at a used book sale in the fall before I get back to my 100 Must-Read Novels or whatever they're called.

A typical Clive Cussler novel, full of action in various exotic locales, spiced with historical connections. This one runs the gamut from the ancient Phoenicians to Thomas Jefferson. I found it quite entertaining although far-fetched in places, but we read these kind of books to escape from the ordinary, right?

I did enjoy the maniac who was obsessed with medieval jousting tournaments. My kind of bad guy!