Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Wishful Wednesday 09.02.09

What books have you been wishing for lately? Hosted by Should be Reading.

My wishes:

1. The Glass of Time by Michael Cox. Like its "beguiling" and "intelligent" (New York Times Book Review) predecessor, The Glass of Time is a page-turning period mystery about identity, the nature of secrets, and what happens when past obsessions impose themselves on an unwilling present. In the autumn of 1876, nineteen-year-old orphan Esperanza Gorst arrives at the great country house of Evenwood to become a lady's maid to the twenty-sixth Baroness Tansor. But Esperanza is no ordinary servant. She has been sent by her guardian, the mysterious Madame de l'Orme, to uncover the secrets that her new mistress has sought to conceal, and to set right a past injustice in which Esperanza's own life is bound up. At Evenwood she meets Lady Tansor's two dashing sons, Perseus and Randolph, and finds herself enmeshed in a complicated web of seduction, intrigue, deceit, betrayal, and murder. Few writers are as gifted at evoking the sensibility of the nineteenth century as Michael Cox, who has made the world of Charles Dickens and Wilkie Collins his own.

2. Celia Garth by Gwen Bristow. This story is set in South Carolina during the Revolutionary War. Its heroine is Celia Garth, a spirited orphan who works as an apprentice dressmaker in Charleston. She witnesses the British siege of the city and returns during the occupation to become a spy for the rebels, while falling in love.

3. Through a Glass Darkly by Karleen Koen. Karleen Koen's sweeping saga contains unforgettable characters consumed with passion: the extraordinarily beautiful fifteen-year-old noblewoman, Barbara Alderley; the man she adores, the wickedly handsome Roger MontGeoffry; her grandmother, the duchess, who rules the family with cunning and wit; and her mother, the ineffably cruel, self-centered and licentious Diana. Like no other work, Through a Glass Darkly is infused with intrigue, sweetened by romance and awash in the black ink of betrayal.

4. Where Serpents Sleep (Sebastian St. Cyr, #4) by C.S. Harris. London, 1812. The brutal slaughter of eight young prostitutes in a house of refuge near Covent Garden leaves only one survivor, and one witness: Hero Jarvis, reform-minded daughter of the Prince Regent's cousin, Lord Jarvis. When the Machiavellian powerbroker quashes any official inquiry that might reveal his daughter's unorthodox presence, Hero launches an investigation of her own and turns to Sebastian St. Cyr, Viscount Devlin, for help. Working in an uneasy alliance, Hero and Sebastian follow a trail of clues leading from the seedy brothels and docksides of London's East End to the Mayfair mansions of a noble family with dark secrets to hide. Risking both their lives and their reputations, the two must race against time to stop a killer whose ominous plot threatens to shake the nation to its very core.