Friday, July 25, 2008

Comfort Reading

Image by Beth Norling

Some years ago, I happened upon a series of books by Australian author Kerry Greenwood. Just as Ali mentions the idea of comfort-viewing, these are my comfort reading, and recently I have returned to them like a child does to a favourite bedtime story: with much pleasure and cooing!

Set in the Melbourne in the 1920s and featuring the indomitable Hon. Phryne Fisher (pronounced Fry-nee), these books are detective fiction novels in the genre of an updated Agatha Christie. (Indeed, in Urn Burial, there's even a character called Miss Mary Mead, which is the village where Miss Marple lives in Agatha Christie's mythology.)

My favourite part of all is, of course, the heroine Phryne. A gutsy 1920s glamourpuss with killer green eyes, Phryne drives a red Hispano-Suiza, served in WWI in France, can fly a Tiger Moth plane, has a staff (!) in her beautiful St Kilda home and constantly romances intriguing men. Of course she is also very clever, articulate and pretty.

Talk about a feisty heroine! While the novels might not take your breath away, the narratives rarely disappoint, and the rich descriptions of Phryne's clothes and general demeanour (I think people would have said she had 'pluck' back then!) makes them a fabulously easy and refreshing read.
I also especially love the re-released covers by artist Beth Norling. So glamourous. Ahhh.

1 comment:

  1. What gorgeous covers! I've never read Kerry Greenwood, but may have to seek her out in my next round of comfort reading.

    Phillippa Gregory books have been my comfort reading in the past. I love historical fiction, and despite the fact that it gets a little bodice-rippy in places, it's always an entertaining read.
    I still haven't seen the film adaptation of The Other Boleyn Girl, but I'm looking forward to Erica Bana as Henry VIII. Ohhh!

    Thanks for the blog love too :)


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