Back to the Book Bag
Finished up three books over the last couple of weeks, so I’m heading for the library later today!
First, I had Daniel Silva’s The Fallen Angel, taking me back to the art restorer/spy/assassin Gabriel Allon. A young woman is found dead beneath the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, an apparent suicide. However, she is working for the Vatican museums, cataloging artifacts that have been obtained by sometimes-nefarious means through the centuries. This leads Allon on a long chase involving not only the theft of archaeological artifacts but terrorist attacks throughout Europe and in Jerusalem itself. Meanwhile, Gabriel is at work restoring a painting by the Italian Baroque master Caravaggio and struggling to reconcile his future with his past (as usual).
The last time I went to the library to pick up a DVD, I made the mistake of quickly browsing the new books section and found a couple of things I just couldn’t pass up!
I must have hit things at just the right moment, because I found about six copies of Notorious Nineteen, the latest “Stephanie Plum” novel from Janet Evanovich. Once more we romp through the streets of the Burg – part of Trenton, New Jersey – as Stephanie makes her mostly futile attempts at bounty hunting. This time, she’s chasing an embezzler who disappeared from one of the local hospitals after having his appendix removed. The hunt leads her, trusty sidekick Lula, and “boyfriend” Morelli high and low. At the same time, Stephanie has a date with tempting fellow bounty hunter Ranger, who needs a female sidekick at a wedding he’s guarding. Hilarity ensues!
Finally, I finished up with The Incense Game, by Laura Joh Rowland. In the aftermath of the great earthquake of 1703 in Japan, Sano Ichiro, the Shogun’s Chamberlain, must seek out the killer of two young women poisoned just as the earthquake struck. As he navigates the whims of the Shogun and the political pitfalls of the Japanese court, Sano also must care for his family and retainers. His adventurous wife Reiko aids in the investigation, talking to the women that otherwise would conceal things from her husband, and their son Masahiro, who serves as one of the Shogun’s pages tries to help but also remain discreet so he doesn’t become too noticeable at the court. Throughout most of the book, Sano’s longtime nemesis Yanagisawa is out of sight, mourning the death of his oldest son, but by the end things are returning to normal as Japan tries to rebuild itself.