feather_ghyll: Girl reading a book that is resting on her knees (Default)
Jolly Foul Play!: Robin Stevens, Puffin, 2016

The fourth ‘A Most Unladylike Mystery’ or ‘Wells and Wong’ mystery follows our heroines, schoolgirl detectives Hazel Wong and Daisy Wells, back to Deepdean School. Read more... )
feather_ghyll: Back of girl whose gloved hand is holding on to her hat. (Girl in a hat)
First Class Murder: Robin Stevens (A Murder Most Unladylike Mystery) Corgi 2015

I say, old things, I jolly well ought to put Mrs Christie’s ‘Murder on the Orient Express’ on my ‘to reread’ pile!

This is the third adventure of the Detective Society, comprised of that paragon Daisy Wells and her erstwhile Watson Hazel Wong, and this time, they are Read more... )
feather_ghyll: Girl reading a book that is resting on her knees (Default)
I’ll post an overview of a few books I’ve read over the holidays eventually, but this post is a look back at 2015, following a tradition started by my first post of 2015 when I said I looked forward to the next adventures of Wells and Wong. Well, Arsenic for Tea by Robin Stevens (in which the 1930s schoolgirls investigate another mystery, this time in Daisy Wells’s country house home) lived up to my expectations. I enjoyed Kate Saunders’s Beswitched, originally published a few years ago, but taking the reader back to a 1930s boarding school, a fraction more, even. I loved reading Jane of Lantern Hill by L.M. Montgomery and Gail Carriger’s Etiquette & Espionage.

Turning to hadrbacks, I enjoyed The Little Betty Wilkinson by Evelyn Smith, even though I think she’s written better books. I did read a book each by the ‘big four’: Elinor M. Brent-Dyer’s Chudleigh Hold, Sally’s Summer Term by Dorita Fairlie Bruce, Tomboys at the Abbey by Elsie J. Oxenham, which I didn’t review, and For the School Colours by Angela Brazil.

(In the first paragraph, I build up to my favourite and do the opposite in the second.)

Perhaps the best book I read this year was ‘Rose Under Fire’ by Elizabeth Wein, which is wonderful and harrowing, and I feel incapable of writing about it. I also really loved Helena McEwen’s Invisible River.

I reread Katherine L. Oldmeadow’s The Fortunes of Jacky, which stands the test of time, and now I have no more Oldmeadows to reread. I am, obviously, looking out for more by her in all the shops that sell second-hand books! I hope to read the next case Hazel Wong writes up and the second in the Finishing School series, but I expect to read EBD's 'Fardingales' as I have a copy in the depths of my 'to read' pile.
feather_ghyll: Girl reading a book that is resting on her knees (Default)
Arsenic for Tea: Robin Stevens, Corgi, 2015

The second Wells and Wong mystery and sequel to Murder Most Unladylike is set at Fallingford, Daisy’s home – I suppose another murder at Deepdean school really would have led to its closure – where Hazel is holidaying and observing upper-class English life at close quarters. For Daisy’s fourteenth birthday, there is going to be a party, but, as we know from the outset of the book, it is going to be marred by murder.

Stevens is therefore tackling the country house murder mystery through the eyes of clever 1930s schoolgirls, with references to Daisy’s beloved detective stories.

”I,” said Daisy, ‘can do anything. And even though she doesn’t like to mention it, so can Hazel.”’ (p 324).

Read more... )

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