elfscribe5 (elfscribe5) wrote,

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Happy St. Patrick's Day and book recs

Hi friends,
No, didn't have green beer or anything to drink today and although I bought corned beef and cabbage, I didn't make any because all the family is out of the house. Tomorrow night.   Anyway, here's a virtual erin go bragh to ye.

I finished the Diana Gabaldon book I mentioned last post called Lord John and the Private Matter and I heartily recommend it. Amusing narrative voice, great characters, a mystery so convoluted you'll never figure it out. The main character, Lord John Grey, is quite sexy in that repressed 18th century British manner, all civility and duty on the surface, seething with secret desires underneath. And how can you resist a story that starts with the main character getting an eyeful of another man's "privy member" and being shocked at what he sees: "It was the sort of thing one hopes momentarily that one has not really seen-- because life would be so much more convenient if one hadn't." The Honorable Joseph is engaged to Lord John's cousin and now Lord John has to figure out how to deal with the revelation that her fiance is "poxed." Almost immediately this embarrassing domestic matter becomes tied with another of the disappearance of sensitive military documents. Lord John turns out to be the "man on the spot" who has to figure it out. The period has been meticulously researched and you really feel transported back to the time with all the sights and smells from the houses of the wealthy to the seedy underbelly of London. I loved all the scenes at the molly house. So nice to see a gay character as a hero in a mainstream book. Plus, I admire her fresh use of language. The pacing is strong too throughout most of the book. There are even some sex scenes, non-explicit but there. Fun read. I'm already starting on the second Lord John book in the series. .

Also read another book a couple days ago by Ursula K. LeGuin which reminded me of why she is one of my favorite all-time authors.  It's a young adult novel about a young man named Gavir who sees visions of the future. He is a slave who was kidnapped from his country and sold at a young age, raised in a relatively benevolent household where he is taught to read and write. Then the son of the owner kills his sister for pleasure and in grief Gavir walks away and goes on a journey to discover his roots. In the process he examines what freedom means for both men and women in his society. The writing is so elegant, deceptively simple and yet so many lines resonate with truth. And LeGuin's ability to depict a completely different culture in all its complexity is unsurpassed among fantasy writers.
This book is third in a series that takes place in the same fictional universe, but the characters are different in each one so that the stories stand alone.


Tags: book recs, personal

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