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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

New Mystery Book on our shelves!

The Secret Adventures of Charlotte Bronte by Laura Joh Rowland, Overlook Press, 2008, $24.95

When I first saw the ARC (advance reader copy) for this book, the title intrigued me because I am an Austen and Bronte sisters fan. I did not know what to expect as I started to read it. I knew Laura Joh Rowland (who lives down the road in NO,LA) was a mystery writer and has a series with a samurai detective. But as I got further into the book, I was thinking to myself "this is not what I was thinking the book would read like". The story is about Charlotte Bronte, author of Jane Eyre, and her true life family. She receives a letter from her publisher with disturbing news that her works and her sisters, all penned under the surname of Bell, are being falsely accused of breaching the publisher's contract. Charlotte is outraged and travels to London to clear her family's name. On the train traveling to London, Charlotte and her sister, Anne, meet a mysterious woman. Subsequently, this woman is found murdered, but not before she involves Charlotte and Anne into a thick plot of adventure and romance. Charlotte takes it upon herself to solve this woman's murder, and in doing so puts her life in real danger and that of her family back in the English countryside. Even though it was a far fetched concept of putting a true classics author in a strange and twisted thriller, it worked for me, and I truly enjoyed Charlotte's adventure. Now that the book has been released and on our shelf, I am in love with the dust jacket. As you can guess from my blogs, I am a sucker for 19th century writing and of course, fashion.