Friday, December 5, 2008

A break for holiday shopping

... and I have some delightful suggestions for the readers on your list. Going Out With A Bang, of course, is a noisy and sometimes messy collection of crime stories from the Ladies' Killing Circle. Blood on the Holly is another excellent choice--this anthology from Crime Writers of Canada was published last year. Both are great reads, with a wide variety of styles and twists, and something by me inside.

Both those links are to Amazon, but I recommend ordering them from The Sleuth of Baker Street in Toronto. The store has signed copies and even better, can call me in to personalize them.

I have a cousin who is particularly brilliant at recommending books I turn out to love, and she mentioned two this week. The first is Can Any Mother Help Me?, letters by women who, from the mid-30s, comprised the Cooperative Correspondence Club to share their support and ideas. The second is The Short Life and Long Times of Mrs. Beeton. If you haven't so much as looked over Mrs. Beeton's exhaustive book on domestic matters, you should, but the biography sounds fascinating too: she was a Victorian superstar from her early 20s, then died at 28 because Mr. Beeton gave her syphilis. Okay, that sounds like a lot of a downer, but both books are huge on social history, which intrigues me no end.


Karen said...

Good lord. Mr. Beeton gave her syphilis??? I never knew that! Wow. I think I always thought of her as about 55 years old, not a sweet young Victorian homemaker.

Mary Keenan said...

She was marketed as much older for credibility reasons, but actually she had had a lot of experience as the oldest of 21 kids (some were from different dads, and maybe only adopted sibs, not sure.) Yeah, I think the book has a fair bit in it about health, like the fact that it was normal not to see why a bride might care to know the were marrying a syphilitic guy. Yay!