Wednesday, October 20, 2010


My friend Barbara Carvallos asked me about an online Book Club made up of 15 relatives and sister manages it so she limits it to that number, but i think we could share our reading here not in a formal book club but just sharing randomly things we read. I am always interested to see what people read. I'm going to post the same review I emailed to the Book Club members...if anyone reads this, I will post once a month. I read maybe six books a month so some are bound to interest others.

In September I read several books, a couple of them were mysteries writeen by women. I enjoy taking a break from more serious reading to indulge in the intricate suspense, and plot twists in mystery books. Anne Perry has been a favorite of mine for several year. Most of her mysteries are set in the mid 19th century in London and her protagonists are a former police inspector who after an accident which leaves him with only a sketchy memory of his past, named Thomas Monk. He has met and married a woman who was a battlefield nurse in Turkey during the Crimean War working with Florence Nightingale and is a determined activist for making nursing a profession with schools to train them instead of the practice of hospitals in those years using nurses as scrub women.The nurse's name is Hester, and she has appeared in previous novels as a single woman who is a private nurse; since her marriage she volunteers at a charity hospital to supervise the nursing staff. The latest book I read in this series was The Twisted Root. The plot, a young woman is engaged to the scion of a prominent family and is accused of murdering the coachman as she fled the scene of a garden party at her fiancees home. Monk is hired by this family to find her and clear her of the charges, and the sub-plots include a nurse who steals morphine and quinine from the hospital where Hester works, to give to elderly veterans of the war with France who have no pensions and no money to seek medical care and buy the drugs they need. Perry's descriptions of the physical and historical context of the time she writes of is poetic. This is a read-all-night book.

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