What I am reading: My mother and I were talking the other day. She mentioned that she had asked my dad if he read more than one book at a time because she was currently reading two…I am currently reading…too many. But I am enjoying them. Just about done with The Devil in the White City and hotdamnandhellyeah what a good book. The writing is lively and kind of fun, even when the story is grim. The history is interesting and yes, I do have a weird fascination with certain serial killers, I didn’t know anything about either H.H. Holmes or the Columbia Exhibition before this book. It is a “fictionalized non-fiction” book of sorts but that’s how it stays entertaining.
At the same time I am also reading two Georgette Heyer novels, Behold Here's Poison (because that's one of the best darn titles ever!) and The Nonesuch. In another gaping hole in my education, I had never heard of Georgette Heyer, I don’t know why, I read mystery novels and she wrote quite a few of those, but I suppose her Regency romance novels are really what she is known for and I am not up on romances. I have read a few here and there and I have no issue with them, I just tend to read other things. Well, a few months ago, the BFF mentioned that she had been loaned these two books that the loaner had described as “as close to Jane Austen as you will probably get”. That intrigued and frightened me, I love Jane Austen and often times when someone says, “This is what Jane would write if she were writing today” they are usually about as far from Austen as you can get. But Heyer wrote a lot and here was a personal recommendation, so I found a few books on half.com and started reading. I am about halfway done with Behold here’s Poison and only starting The Nonesuch but…Georgette Heyer keeps popping up in my life. After I ordered the book, I happened to win another book (by a different author) online, and in researching THAT author, I came across many references to Heyer. Then I asked my mom if she had ever read any Georgette Heyer as mom is very well versed in Regency romances…and pretty much any other book out there. She told me that she not only knew who she was, she had read all of her books when I was a little girl! Finally last night I was watching a documentary sort of thing on Stephen Fry and he was talking about his guilty pleasures. Apparently, aside from darts and punching Hugh Laurie, he loves Georgette Heyer. Heck, she’s even widely credited with creating the Regency romance genre…well, the kind that wasn’t actually written during the early 19th century.
I guess the real question is, what rock have I been under all these years?
(Incidentally, Stephen Fry has the most beautiful stage punch ever. Straight out from his shoulder and right to the jaw. I could watch him coldcock Hugh Laurie all day and not got tired of it.)
I think I am also reading a few other books but I tend to leave them scattered around and pick them up ever now and then. I am kind of puttering around with a few books on fairies that I am using as inspiration for some new pictures. And I picked up a YA book in “Great Britain” in Epcot called I Am Morgan le Fey by Nancy Springer. I just found the title interesting. We’ll see if I like it.
I think I did startle two little girls in that store though. Oh and hey, why is there not a bookstore in Disneyworld? Or is there one and I just couldn’t find it? There were several Disney books that I was looking for (and eventually found in different places throughout the parks) but it just seems like a good idea…one store, all books. Most of Disney’s movies were inspired by books and heck, Disney has it’s own publishing branch, but it took me forever to find the Mary Blair book I was looking for (found it in Mexico in Epcot, didn’t buy it, too expensive). Anyway…these two young girls were perusing the meager selection of books in the toy store in Great Britain and one of them said to the other “Who is this MANDY”? referring, of course, to the book, Mandy, by Julie Andrews. AND here’s where the story gets a little Ren…I had just come from the pub and was a little…happy (just a little) so I swooped in and proceeded to school these kids on good books, Mandy being a story I had read at their age. I also heartily encouraged them to read the Mary Poppins series as well as the Narnia books. They took it all in stride but kind of backed away slowly. And then when one of them asked for a book her mother said, “I am not paying $20 for this! Come on!” and dragged her out of the store. Sigh.
And the same goes for you! No, no, I would totally buy you a $20 book...ok, i wouldn't, but I do think you should read the Mary Poppins series...and at least The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe of the Narnia series. It's good stuff.