Murder on the Eiffel Tower by Claude Izner proved to be a good but bizarre read in the end.
Good in that I enjoyed it, plot, atmosphere and sense of place which has sent me scurrying back to some Parisian reading.Set at the opening of the tower at the 1889 Universal Exposition and an outbreak of the killer bees...perhaps.These translations from Gallic Books will give us some of the latest contemporary reads from France.You have to wonder whether they get any of ours?
Bizarre in that I was reading two other books at the same time, not exactly the same time but in my usual rotational fashion and, in that rather surreal way that can happen, they all transfused into each other.I was getting more and more confused and had myself down for early Alzheimer's by last Friday especially as I'd also forgotten where I'd parked my car at the surgery one day last week too.
In fact the car park had been full and the surgery empty which meant everyone had nipped in, had their blood taken and cheekily gone off shopping for the morning (hope none of you do that) so I'd had to sneak a spot in the Social Services car park next door (where no one wants anyone to see their car parked, but I'm not fussy)
But book-to-book transfusion is an odd thing. Two books, Murder on the Eiffel Tower and Season of the Witch by Natash Mostert had characters with the fairly unusual name of Isidore and both books had a scene about a life drawing class.Then Season of the Witch and Self Help by Edward Docx both had main characters called Gabriel and featured scenes where characters are paralysed by a stroke.Self Help also had a life drawing class scenario and was partly set in Paris.
I did that little check-the-faculties quiz they use on the elderly.
Can you name the prime minister?
Can you count back from 100 subtracting 3 each time?
It's really worth starting to practice this in your 50's so that it trips off your tongue because it will be sprung on when you least expect it when your children are wanting to stash you in a home.I got stuck on the PM question and my maths is hopeless so I may as well book my room now.
Murder on the Eiffel Tower has the benefit of a fabulous cover and a writing partnership between two sisters and of course Season of the Witch is about two sisters but they aren't booksellers on the banks of the Seine whose next book will be The Pere Lachaise Mystery.
I can't wait for that one but meanwhile how to fuel my Parisian reading?
I'm still not feeling brave enough to tackle Balzac but do have Cousin Bette waiting when I have amassed the courage.Could someone hold my hand and tell me it'll be fine?
So it's back to old faithful Emile Zola and this time Nana which I'm loving, so far no one called Isidore and no life drawing classes but give it time.I've yet to read a Zola which isn't instantly accessible,readable and entertaining yet in a previous life I may have considered him way out of my reach.
I'm also on my first encounter with Colette courtesy of Hesperus Press and Claudine's House, very impressive read and more on that soon.
Another book off the shelf that came via Sharon at Ex Libris Waiting for Gertrude A Graveyard Gothic by Bill Richardson, felines in Pere Lachaise so perhaps life drawing classes even less likely and then finally I must read the book that Offspringette told me about ages ago Books, Baguettes & Bedbugs The Left Bank World of Shakespeare & Co. by Jeremy Mercer.