This weekly meme is hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.
Only one book finished last week. Not a great result, but an understandable one as my casual job of two days a week has suddenly become a seven-day job. Physically demanding and coupled with the heat and humidity, it has drastically affected my reading and blogging time. I've not been able to focus and find after attempting to read a few pages I'm nodding off. My weekly visits to the library have also been postponed, but due to a kind neighbour my holds are still being collected and my TBR continues to grow.
Also not having the time to visit any blogs over the past few weeks, I've missed not seeing what you've all been up to and what books you are reading. Hopefully, after this week I'll be back to working two days a week and able to resume my regular routine.
The Unmourned by daughter and father team, Meg and Tom Keneally, was the book I finished last week. This is the second in a series set in colonial Australia which I'm enjoying very much and looking forward to the next book. I'd read/heard somewhere that there would be only three books in this series. I'm hoping this is not the case and they go on to write many more featuring Hugh Monsarrat and Mrs. Mulrooney, the expert tea maker and tea towel flicker.
I'm still progressing with the books I carried over from last week and did manage the first two chapters of Shoes for Anthony before the slump hit.
I'm looking forward to my next books Nor the Years Condemn and We That Are Left. Just not sure how long it will be before I get to them.
What I Read Last Week
The Unmourned by Meg and Tom Keneally
Not all murder victims are mourned, but the perpetrator must always be punished ...
For Robert Church, superintendent of the Parramatta Female Factory, the most enjoyable part of his job is access to young convict women.Inmate Grace O'Leary has made it her mission to protect the women from his nocturnal visits and when Church is murdered with an awl thrust through his right eye, she becomes the chief suspect.
Recently arrived from Port Macquarie, ticket-of-leave gentleman convict Hugh Monsarrat now lives in Parramatta with his ever-loyal housekeeper Mrs Mulrooney. Monsarrat, as an unofficial advisor on criminal and legal matters to the governor's secretary, is charged with uncovering the truth of Church's murder. Mrs Mulrooney accompanies him to the Female Factory, where he is taking depositions from prisoners, including Grace, and there the housekeeper strikes up friendships with certain women, which prove most intriguing.
Monsarrat and Mrs Mulrooney both believe that Grace is innocent, but in this they are alone, so to exonerate her they must find the murderer. Many hated Church and are relieved by his death, but who would go as far as killing him
What I'm Reading Today
For Two Cents I'll Go With You by Marcia Maxwell
In the spring of 1917, Walter "Pat" Lusk sits at his desk shuffling papers and dreaming of glory on the battlefield. Frustrated, he's convinced the Great War will remain forever out of reach until one day his friend Aubrey arrives with the thrilling news that the United States has finally declared war on Germany! With his path to adventure now clear, Pat immediately enlists in the Army, where he trains as a surgeon's assistant. Sent to France with Evacuation Hospital No. 4, will Pat finally attain the glory he seeks treating desperately wounded soldiers through the war's darkest days? Will he ever win over the redoubtable Nurse Oberholtzer? Will the Armistice bring peace to the boys of Evac 4, or does a time of even greater testing await Pat and his friends?
Daughter of Mine by Fiona Lowe
The three Chirnwell sisters are descended from the privileged squattocracy in Victoria’s Western District — but could a long-held secret threaten their family?
Harriett Chirnwell has a perfect life — a husband who loves her, a successful career and a daughter who is destined to become a doctor just like her.
Xara has always lived in Harriet’s shadow; her chaotic life with her family on their sheep farm falls far short of her older sister’s standards of perfection and prestige.
Georgie, the youngest sister and a passionate teacher, is the only one of the three to have left Billawarre. But is her life in Melbourne happy?
Despite all three sisters having a different and sometimes strained bond with their mother, Edwina, they come together to organise a party for her milestone birthday — the first since their father’s death. But when Edwina arrives at her party on the arm of another man, the tumult is like a dam finally breaking. Suddenly the lives of the Chirnwell sisters are flooded by scandal. Criminal accusations, a daughter in crisis, and a secret over fifty years in the making start to crack the perfect façade of the prominent pastoral family.
Shoes for Anthony by Emma Kennedy
The idea of the war coming to their small, impoverished Welsh mining village always seemed remote, but with one explosive event and the arrival of the Americans preparing for the invasion of France, the people of Treherbert find their world turned upside down.
But war brings distrust, lies and danger. And as the villagers find themselves hopelessly divided, Anthony, an 11-year-old who hasn’t had a pair of shoes in years, is going to have to choose between what is popular and what is right.
What I Hope To Read Next
Nor the Years Condemn
“Nor the Years Condemn” is based on the incredible true story of the amazing breed of young men who answered the call of Britain in her darkest hour. They learnt to fly bone-shatteringly high-performance combat aircraft in which they fought for freedom against the so far unstoppable might of Nazi Germany. In their teens and early-20s, they were the ‘top guns’ of their era, out of pure necessity for the job at hand the best and brightest, physically and mentally, of a generation. This fact will render the death of so many of them doubly heart-rending for the reader, albeit that they were sacrificed in so noble a cause.
“Nor the Years Condemn” portrays the gripping saga of doomed, brilliant youth through the eyes of 20-year-old Australian law student and rugby star, Daniel Quinn. Flanked by the highly intelligent, sometimes hilarious young men of his elite ilk, he leaves his peacetime life behind and crosses the Planet to fight tyranny. Flying the iconic Supermarine Spitfire (to this day a stirring symbol of the resistance of Good against Evil), Quinn’s personality is transformed from his peacetime self into a professional killer.
With in-the-cockpit-seat flying sequences that readers have described as cinematic, “Nor the Years Condemn” is also a story of the grieving mothers cursed to relinquish their wonderful sons to war, of first love, of strategic deception and betrayal, of brotherhood and once-in-a-lifetime friendship on a knife’s edge. It is a story of shining young men destined never to become old, and of those who do: the survivors condemned by the years, and to their memory of friends who remain forever young.
We That Are Left by Clare Clark
It is 1910 and to ten-year-old Oskar Grunewald, the Melville family is impossibly, incomprehensibly glamorous. Born into privilege, their certainties are as unshakeable as the walls of their Victorian castle. It is a world to which Oskar, mathematics prodigy and son of a penniless German composer, has no wish to belong.
But when Theo Melville is killed in the Great War, shattering his family’s lives, Oskar finds himself drawn reluctantly into the gaping hole his death has left behind. As Theo’s two sisters struggle to forge their paths in a world that no longer plays by the old rules, Oskar’s life becomes entwined with theirs in a way that will change all of their futures.