Sunday, January 19, 2014

Amateur Detecting

I am enthralled by the Phryne Fisher series of books by Kerry Greenwood. I am on the sixth one, Blood and Circuses. Phryne is such a good interesting character. She was raised poor so when riches came her way she knew to appreciate them. The series is set in 1920s Australia. An unexplored country for my reading tastes. The books are shorter in length but never feel too short. The stories progress at a rapid clip and leave you wanting more rather than an interminable wrap up of every little detail.

I quickly found the Audible books to be my preferred reading method for this series. My library was lacking the third and fourth books. I was forced to pick between Audible and my Kindle. After listening to a sample I decided Audible was the way to go. The narrator Stephanie Daniel gives quite a performance. It is not just reading with an animated voice, which is fine, but a performance of various character's voices. She even got the Gus stamp of narration approval.

I am finding I read so much more with my audio books. I actually managed to read a book in two days at work. I've set up my Ipod on low volume and within easy reach. When a call comes in or I am very busy I just pause. Otherwise it is like knitting on a plain stretch, part of my brain is occupied listening to the story and the rest is doing its normal work thing. I enjoyed the second book of  Charles Todd's Bess Crawford series this way.

The Bess Crawford series is set in England and France during WWI. Bess is a field nurse. We get a glimpse into war torn England and France. It is so odd to read about WWI, The Great War, knowing that WWII is fast on its heels.

I guess I am in a strong female amateur detective phase. Plus there are so many good books of genre coming out. Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Windspear is set in England just after The Great War too. While Maisie was a nurse in the war, she turns her attentions to being an investigator and psychologist. Susan Elia MacNeal's Maggie Hope series is set in England during WWII. Maggie is a mathematician that starts off working as a secretary for Mr. Churchill.

Which also leads us to a great British television series set after WWII, Bletchley Circle. A circle of four female former code breakers investigate the serial murders of women in London. It is odd to think of a serial killer after WWII. Seems like a serial killer is such a modern day thing. But if you're a killer, you're a killer regardless of your birth year.

So I'm apparently vicariously living the life of an post world war amateur detective. See how reading can easily take you to different places and times? Who wouldn't want to pick up a book?

1 comment:

  1. My preferred method of reading these days is by audio book, though it usually needs to be either a really riveting non-fiction book or a really good story.