Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Presumption of Death

A Presumption of Death by Jill Paton Walsh & Dorothy Sayers. 2002. St. Martin's Press. 384 pages.

'Whoever, for example, Lady Peter,' said Miss Agnes Twitterton, 'is that?"
'You do have a point, my dear,' said Mrs. Goodacre, the vicar's wife, who was standing with the two women behind a trestle table at one end of the Village Hall, pouring out Miss Twitterton's parsnip wine into rows of assorted sherry glasses. 'There was a time, as you say, and not so long ago, when we would have known everybody we could possibly meet here--when any stranger was a seven-day-wonder--and now here we are organizing a village hop, and we don't know half the people here. They could be anybody, indeed I expect they are.' 

A Presumption of Death is set in 1940. Lord Peter and Bunter are in Europe on a secret-mission. Lady Harriet is in the country at Talboys with the children. Her and Peter have two small sons, Bredon and Paul, and she's also taken Charles and Mary's three children, Charlie, Mary, and Harriet. Harriet is not the only woman thinking of the safety of her children, no, many families are trying to send their children to the country for safety. The villagers are opening their homes, and, are willing to their duty for the war. The village IS preparing for war. They've been working on air raid shelters and organizing themselves to prepare for the worst. It is during the rehearsal of an air raid that a murder is committed! A woman is found dead. Almost everyone was accounted for in one of the two shelters. But someone murdered the young woman...can the local police with a little aid from Lady Harriet solve this crime?

I liked this one. I can't really say too much about it. It is a mystery after all. And the less you know, the better it will be! But I enjoyed it. I think Jill Paton Walsh has done a good job with the characters, keeping them true to the originals, yet giving readers more of what they love.

© 2011 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

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