The act of reading ... begins on a flat surface, counter or page, and then gets stirred and chopped and blended until what we make, in the end, is a dish, or story, all our own.
— Adam Gopnik
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April 12, 2012

Casting Call

Though I love to, and wouldn't stop for the world, it's sometimes a little frustrating to read blogs from abroad, knowing that I might not be able to find -- or might have to wait much too long for -- the books recommended on them.  I'm trying to do better about keeping track, but unfortunately I don't remember where I heard about Sidney Chambers and the Shadow of Death, by James Runcie, but since it has a vicar, and is a mystery, and is set in Grantchester, I knew I wanted to read it. Our library system didn't have it (though they do now), but thankfully Bloomsbury USA has been nice enough to share it with me via Netgalley.

I'm not very far along, but I'm enjoying it so far -- probably mostly because it's been the perfect book for this week. I spent the first half of it waiting to hear if I was getting a new job (I did! I did!!!) and for me, a cozy mystery is as good for you on a stressful day as it is on a day when all of that has melted away.

So forgive me if I'm a little goofy at the moment, but ...

Sidney was a tall, slender man in his mid-thirties. A lover of warm beer and hot jazz, a keen cricketer and an avid reader, he was known for his understated clerical elegance. His high forehead, aquiline nose, and longish chin were softened by nut-brown eyes and a gentle smile, one that suggested he was always prepared to think the best of people.

 I know, ... right?!!  And he has played an angel. (I love that movie.)  And then, a chapter or so later, when he's off looking for clues ...

On arrival, Sidney was somewhat surprised by the appearance of the victim's secretary.  He could not remember seeing her at the funeral and was now guilty of a presumption.  He had been expecting a cliche:  a woman in a green tweed skirt with her hair pinned into a neat bun; someone who had been educated at Girton and now lived with her mother and a couple of cats.  What he discovered instead was an elegant and petite woman  in her late thirties with swift eyes and finely angled features. She was dressed entirely in black and white and wore silver jewelry that matched her elegantly styled grey hair.

Well, okay, there is that last detail, but maybe I could do this as a second job. :)


Lisa May said...

Congratulations on your new job! and I know exactly what you mean about overseas blogs & books. This book sounds delightful & I hope that our libraries will be getting it as well. And The Bishop's Wife is one of my favorite holiday movies!

Claire (The Captive Reader) said...

How exciting about your new job! Congratulations!

I've had my eye on this book for a while now and cannot wait for my library copy to become available.

lyn said...

Congratulations on your new job. I'm very much looking forward to meeting Sidney when the book's published next month (I think). I wonder if I'll agree with your casting ideas?!

Darlene said...

Another round of applause for your wonderful news!

And I've been one of The Book Depository's best customers for the past few years. Although, since a buyout by Amazon I have noticed the prices creeping up a bit *sigh*.

JoAnn said...

Congratulations on your new job!

I am constantly putting books on my wish list before they are available here. Try to look at it as a little extra time with you current tbr pile before adding more ;-)

FleurFisher said...

Well done on the new job!

We're actually still waiting for this one to come out in the UK - it seems to have been promoted for a very long time before publication.

Elizabeth Tierney said...

This book is at the top of my wish list, but I'm trying to hold off on buying new books until I've read down my staggering stack of books that I own but haven't opened yet! Thanks for the preview and congratulations on your new job!

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