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I'm interested in the book on the Verneys. I think this is the family who lived at Claydon House in Buckinghamshire. The House now belongs to the National Trust and I've visited it a few times. The guide book says that the family had lived in Bucks since the 13th century, but Sir Edmund (knighted in 1611)was the most distinguished of the Verneys - he died at the Battle of Edgehill in the Civil War. Presumably Tinniswood's book covers this. I'd love to read it too.

There are so many enticing books, but I think I'm going to re-read "Atonement" soon in advance of the film's release in September. Have you started it yet?


How funny, when I went to see Stardust earlier this week, there was a fight and police were called. Something in the water?

I have tried to avoid going to the library much because of the same problem you're facing. In fact, I'm on my way there this afternoon to return 4 books I never even managed to crack open, even after maxing out my two renewals. And yeah, I'll probably pick up at least one other book while I'm there ...


The book on six women in Italy sounds very interesting to read. That would be a like contribution to armchair traveler reading, eh?

It's bookstore scour day for me and I'm taking your historical fiction list along with a few other recommendations from bloggers.


Despite my dislike of Phillips' other two books, I wound up checking "Angelica" out of the library because a Victorian ghost story is just my cup of tea. Unfortunately, I have now decided that Phillips is NOT for me. I read about half the book, hated the characters, and decided to take it back without finishing it.

I'll be curious to hear if you had better luck with it! I hope so!


The Blood of Flowers is very good. I reviewed it for Waterstone's Online earlier this year.

Dorothy W.

75 pages left in DQ! That's good. I've got about 120 left, and I'm feeling anxious to finish it too, in spite of the fact that I'm enjoying it. But this is long enough, right? The book about the Verneys does sound quite interesting, doesn't it?


Oh, I bought the Sweeney book since it was in stock at the local store. You'll probably get to it before I do so it will be nice to see what you think of it. Dorothy persuaded me it was worth a try as well.


Oh, you're all going to finish DQ before me! And on schedule! I haven't even started Book II yet - what with review copies and Booker longlisters coming out my ears, I hardly think I'll finish it before Christmas. Grrrrr.

Your other books do sound very interesting though, 'The Blood of Flowers' particularly.


The Verneys sounds very appealing to me. It looks like the sort of thing I get from the library and let it sit. Then will I pick it up the day before it is due and read enough of it to decide that I should buy it. Then when it comes, I am so busy trying to finish my library books it sits on the table for months before I pick it up. Please report on it!

Alex Foster

Oohh, I really enjoyed Angelica. If you like that one, I recommend John Harwood's The Ghost Writer.

Dark Orpheus

Oh. Fight at library? What happened? Were they fighting over a book?

I'm with you on "Angelica". I borrowed it a while back - but never found the time for it. Had to return it. But hopefully I could get to it for Carl's RIP Challenge - if it fits the challenge.

Not so sure about "The Blood of Flowers" though. We had the proof copy lying around the office - tried to read it. I felt it was formulaic.

But that's just me.


Oddly enough, there have been two incidents at our public library recently. This is extremely rare. One incident involved a dispute over the use of a cell phone. Very distressing, and inexcusable behavior for both involved parties.
I just finished "Blood of Flowers". As a needleworker, you will find it particularly enjoyable, I think. It is a good read, and I would recommend it. I especially appreciated that the ending did not degenerate into the fantastical.


Oh, rats, I just read Dark Orpheus' comments re "Blood of Flowers". I agree: it is formulaic, but I think it is worth a read for you. If I were you, I'd read it, but not necessarily push it to the top of the stack. Sorry for the double post, that will teach me not to skim--Kim


I bought the Blood of Flowers recently but I haven't gotten around to reading it yet. I'll be interested in hearing your thoughts on it after you've read it.


BooksPlease--Have you visited there? If the house on the cover is their house--it looks quite nice!! It sounds as though they saved every piece of paper in their possession for generations--and archivists dream!! I read Atonement several years ago and really liked it, though I should really reread it. I'm looking forward to the movie.
Lesley--maybe the heat? I do feel guilty checking out too many books, but less guilty than if I had bought them!
Matt--You'll have to share which books you bought! I would say the Barolini book would count as armchair travel! It looks to have a decidedly literary slant to it, though not sure how it reads.
Oolookitty--That happens. Some authors you just don't mesh with. I've had some that I won't pick up again. I have yet to read any of his work, so I am hoping to like this one.
Kimbofo--I remember your review. I wanted to get it then, but it was only available in the UK at the time. It sounds like it is right up my alley.
Dorothy--You'll be finished soon, too. It's a nice feeling, but it's going to be weird not reading it every day. It did get to be long in parts,though, I have to admit. I am very curious about the Verney book--I may have to read the first chapter and see how it goes. If there isn't a line I can renew it--somehow I can't imagine lots of people waiting for it, but I could be wrong.
Imani--I started reading it and am really enjoying it. I love the descriptions so far and like the narrator's voice. She makes me want to keep reading.
Victoria--Don't feel bad..while I have been reading DQ, all my other books have been suffering, so I know how you feel. After dragging out reading War and Peace last year, I wasn't about to have it straggling on the night stand over into 2008. I'm sure you'll get through part 2 quickly. It's hard to juggle so many books that sound good, isn't it!
Sherry--I do the same thing. I get mad at myself, though, if I buy something in cloth and then don't read it and the paper comes out. I could have waited and saved the money. I'll let you know how it goes,though.
Alex--Glad to hear you liked it. I read Ghost Writer, too. It was creepy, wasn't it!
Dark Orpheus--I'm not sure what the fight was over, but unfortunately I would say not a book! :) I was actually on another floor, but you could hear everything as all the floors are open in the middle and there is an atrium. The sound carried all the way to the 3rd floor! It was two girls and one was pregnant. Not a pretty picture. Hmm, now I am curious about what you mean by formulaic. I can be pretty forgiving though if I like the characters. We'll see how it goes.
Kim--You don't expect to see fights in libraries, but you get all sorts of people there as it is a public space and anyone can use the computers. It's sad when stuff like that happens especially when there are little kids around. Part of the draw for me with the Blood of Flowers is the needleworker aspect of it! The first page drew me right in. I won't start it properly though until I finish something else first.
PJ--I'll be reading it next as it is a 14 Day Loan book, which means I won't be able to renew it. I usually try and stay away from those books as I don't always get to them in time, but I am hoping this one will be a fast read.


Okay, I could not resist. One of the libraries in my network is acquiring the Verneys. I have requested it. Wonder how long I will have to wait?


A fight at the library? Were they arguing over a book? At least there was no excrement!


Sherry--Considering how slow I am--you will probably get to it before me! :) It is a nice, thick book, though....lots to sink your teeth into!
Stefanbie--I think one girl got into another's face. Heven knows what they were arguing about, but I'm sorry to say it wasn't a book. Oh thank heavens there was no excrement involved. I've heard a lot of library stories, but nothing like that one. I'm not sure that can be topped!!


Yes I've visited it and yes it is the house on the book cover. It's a lovely house, one of my friends used to be a steward there so I had a personal guide. I used to work in the County Record Office (archives) and the County Archivist is the archivist for Claydon House, but I haven't seen the archives. I'll put some photos on my blog.

Carl V

Interesting stuff!!! I'm going to have to see if my library has that Grace Kelly book as it looks and sounds wonderful.


What an interesting, hefty stack! It could be a blessing that my local library sucks. I'd never get anything read if I had my own stacks AND the library's to contend with!


Wow, what a great stack from the library! Many of these sound interesting to me, particularly The Verneys, The Blood of Flowers, and The Island - which, coincidentally I bought from bookcloseouts (where else?) for 4 or 5 dollars - the UK edition. I think I like the American cover better, actually.

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