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Thursday, 21 May 2015

Elizabeth Peters - The Falcon at the Portal

review written by Ro Bennett and read live on the bookshow 22nd May 2015
 This is another book I listened to thanks to the library Oneclick Audio service and ended up buying… It was really enjoyable to listen to but it’s quite a long book, and quite complex in parts, so I bought it so I could flick back and forth for clarification. It’s 375 pages with small font, so I’m glad I could listen to it as well, to save my eyes - and the narrator was excellent. I thoroughly enjoyed it.  I hadn’t realised it was number 11 in a series, but it was fine as a read alone, although I would like to see how the characters have been introduced and developed in the earlier books. 

I love Elizabeth Peter’s witty writing style, it makes me smile, and the narrator is excellent and really captures the humour. 
Here’s an extract from the Preface: 
"The quotations at the head of each chapter were taken from A captive of the Arabs, by Percival Peabody, Esq. (He’s the detestable nephew referred to earlier) , (Privately printed on London in 1911). We were fortunate to be able to obtain a copy of this exceedingly rare volume through the good offices of a friend in London who found it on barrow in Covent Garden, Price 50p. The text is an astonishing blend of the worst of two literary forms: the swash buckling romances popular at the time and the memoirs of travellers and officials of the period. The views expressed by Mr Peabody are no more bigoted and ignorant than those of many of his contemporaries, however the parallels between his work and other memoirs are so exact as to suggest he borrowed freely and directly from them. The word plagiarism might be actionable, so this editor will not use it".

I really enjoyed this book - it was pure escapism with a blend of romance, mystery and murder and I will certainly turn to others in the series when I feel in need of the feel good factor.
She is a prolific and successful novelist with over 50 novels to her credit. Mrs Peters has six cats and two dogs…

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