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Search tags: kim-henry
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text 2017-11-20 15:15
Reading progress update: I've read 171 out of 352 pages.
Lonely Magdalen: A Murder Story - Henry Wade

The investigation into the death of a prostitute found strangled in Hampstead Heath -- the eponymous "Magdalen" (though that isn't actually her name).  I finished Part 1, the first part of the investigation, this morning and have now started the middle part, which tells the victim's life story from age 14 on and is shaping up as a fairly sizeable tragedy.

 

I'm glad to see the investigation is in Inspector Poole's hands at last; his boss (Chief Inspector Beldam), who's been in charge so far, just got on my nerves after a while.  That said, Wade -- a high-ranking public official with a baronetcy, Eton / Oxford and war service background himself -- clearly knew what he was writing about.  (And is the victim's supposed last name, Knox, a friendly co-Detection Club-member jibe at Ronald Knox?  The members of the Detection Club were known to do this sort of thing on occasion ...)

 

High marks to Arcturus Publishing, too, for the splendid cover, which encapsulates the eponymous "Lonely Magdalen" and the novel's general mood to perfection.

 

I'm reading this for the Long Arm of the Law (Chapter 14) square of the Detection Club bingo and for the Pancha Ganapti square of the 16 Festive Tasks.

 



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review 2017-11-15 18:24
Allan Quatermain / H. Rider Haggard
Allan Quatermain - Henry Rider Haggard

Allan Quartermain is a sequel to the famous novel King Solomon's Mines. Quatermain has lost his only son and longs to get back into the wilderness. Having persuaded Sir Henry Curtis, Captain John Good, and the Zulu chief Umbopa to accompany him, they set out from the coast of east Africa, this time in search of a white race reputed to live north of Mount Kenya. They survive fierce encounters with Masai warriors, undergo a terrifying subterranean journey, and discover a lost civilization before being caught up in a passionate love-triangle that engulfs the country in a ferocious civil war.

 

I have read Haggard’s She and King Solomon's Mines, and I basically knew what to expect when I began Allan Quatermain. In many ways, AQ is a combination of the other two novels, but not quite as good as either one of them. It’s an adventure fantasy, starring rich Englishmen in deepest darkest Africa. They shoot a lot of animals and incidentally kill off quite a few African servants in the course of their quest. And what are they searching for, you ask? Why an unknown civilization of white people in an area where almost no one has gone before.

When the men find their Lost Civilization, Haggard doubles down on a good thing. Instead of one mysterious white woman ruling the area (as in She), he provides two of them in this novel! And just to show that the love triangle trope is not unique to modern romance literature, both of these queenly personages fall head over heels in love with Allan’s companion, Sir Henry. To say that this causes problems is an understatement. Also similar to She is Allan’s position vis-à-vis Sir Henry, just as Horace Holly played wise, humbler advisor to his young companion Leo.

I adore Haggard’s She, having discovered this portal to fantastical adventure during my high school years. I feel affection for all of his work because of that and it is impossible for me to rate it objectively, but if you are only going to read one of his adventure fantasies, choose She and get to know She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed. Allan is just not quite as much fun.

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text 2017-11-12 01:20
Reading progress update: I've read 122 out of 185 pages.
The Book of the Lion: Henry Gamadge #13 - Elizabeth Daly

a strange and wonderful old Mystery; I'm having fun. and it's rather short, so there's a chance I'll finish it later tonight. hard to just leave it.

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text 2017-11-11 21:27
Reading progress update: I've read 80 out of 185 pages.
The Book of the Lion: Henry Gamadge #13 - Elizabeth Daly

the premise is unique--Gamadge becomes aware of a cold case involving a down-and-out poet/playwright bludgeoned to death at night, in Central Park, two years before (looks like a mugging...sort of...with, uh, pecularities), just when some dodgy scheme seems to be getting worked, involving some personal writings of his about to go up for sale, maybe. I like it. so I'll finish this, then probably another, more modern, Crime novel, and then I think I'll finish all the contents I've got left in the Machen book.

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text 2017-11-09 17:45
Weekend Plans
To Green Angel Tower - Tad Williams
Allan Quatermain - Henry Rider Haggard
Path of the Eclipse - Chelsea Quinn Yarbro
The Mummy Case - Elizabeth Peters

I’ve got an extra-long 4 day weekend coming up.  This is a good thing—my house looks like a bomb went off in it!  Tomorrow I have to get things cleaned up and do a mountain of laundry.  I’ve also been planning to make an Chicken Peanut Stew in the slow cooker (on a day when I can be home to supervise it, I hate leaving a slow cooker on when I’m out of the house).

 

I’ve also got thoughts about doing up some freezer meals, which would entail a bit of shopping, organizing, labelling, etc.  Plans to make Nuts & Bolts for Christmas have also been floating about in my brain, forget the sugar plums!  While I’m shopping for the freezer meals, I might as well shop for that project too.

 

But I have my relaxation planned as well.  The library practicum student that I’ve been working with gave me a bottle of wine yesterday as a thank you!  What a nice young woman she is.  And of course, I’ve got my pile of books to work on.

 

Next due at the library is To Green Angel Tower, which is enormous and I am half way through.  I’ve got an interlibrary loan coming due—Allan Quatermain—and another due in the near future—The Path of the Eclipse.  If I can make progress on those three over the next four days, that will make my life easier.  I’m also partially done The Mummy Case and it should be a quick finish.

 

Have a lovely weekend, all, and I’ll be back on Tuesday!

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