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I am excited to have Kate Parker visiting today!
Planning for a Getaway
by Kate Parker
I love running away to London. It’s the exact opposite of where I live. Big city. Good public transportation. Cool weather eight or nine months of the year. Ancient buildings made of stone. I live in a small town with no public transportation. We have warm weather eleven months of the year. While we have older buildings, there isn’t a stone in the entire county.
By the time you read this, I’ll be back from my newest trip to London. So this may not be my itinerary, and we may have adventures I’ve not dreamed of yet, but here is what I’m looking forward to between now and when I join you on Escape with Dollycas.
The British Library. The new building, near King’s Cross, is four stories of researchers, students, and tourists in a mix of business and silence. Since I already have a British Library card, with a photo that is every bit as bad as my driver’s license photo, I head straight to the basement to get a locker. No coats, hats, purses, pens, umbrellas, bottled water or cameras are permitted. All I take with me is my reader’s pass, a couple of pencils, my steno notebook, my wallet, and the key to my locker in one of the clear plastic bags they provide. The locker costs me a pound coin, but I’ll get it back at the end of my session.
The newsroom, with old newspapers on microfilm, is on the second floor. I’m looking particularly for fashion news from Paris in autumn, 1938, for Olivia’s next story. When I drag myself away, which I’d better do because I’m supposed to meet my daughter in the courtyard or lobby, there is always a chance we’ll browse through the shop on the first floor for reprints and clever oddities. Then it’s off for a pub lunch across Euston Road. I admit to a fondness for fish, chips, and mushy peas. My daughter shudders at the peas.
Wagamama. My older daughter lived in London for a while, and she introduced us to the original Wagamama. There are 12 in London now, plus in the US, Denmark, Cyprus, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Malta, Sweden, and a bunch more places. It’s inexpensive, no frills, and not the place to take a meat and potatoes guy. I can’t wait.
Courtauld Gallery. It’s a gallery devoted to French Impressionism, which I love, and is situated in Somerset House, where sleuths of Miss Marple’s generation would go to discover who was secretly married to whom and the name and gender of heirs on whom a plot rests. I’ve never been there, but I know I’ll have to take a few pictures of the outside to stoke my imagination if I send someone there after a clue.
St. Luke’s Anglican Church. Built when the Duke of Wellington’s brother was the rector, I plan to use the building, moved to the right area, for the site of Georgia and the Duke’s wedding. That story, finishing the Victorian Bookshop Mysteries, will come out next year along with another pre-WWII story chronicling Olivia’s adventures as a society reporter that is sending me to the British Library.
Windsor Castle. I was last there in 1989 with my daughters. The daughter I’m meeting in London wants to see it again, and I think it will be great fun. Another reason to pack my camera. This time, I hope to cross the bridge and see the town of Eton as well.
West End Theatres. Every time I go over, I see a play, and I’ve never seen a bad one. Some have been popular and some have been surprisingly – different, but they’ve all been enjoyable. I have no idea what we’ll see until we go.
And that leads me to the variety of restaurants in London. Something you don’t find in a small town in the South. We ate at a tapas restaurant the last time we went to a play in London. My daughter, who used to live in Manchester and loves Indian foods, will get me to at least one, where I will explain I need the blandest dish they have. There are also a lot of good Chinese restaurants in London, which I enjoy. My daughter always finds the ones where I am the only person in the restaurant using a fork, which I had to ask for.
We usually do at least one walk, which has taken us all over London and shown us many things we never would have seen otherwise. Who knows where we’ll end up this time. That’s also true of Bletchley Park, the various war museums, the British Museum, the Museum of London, and a huge collection of other places to visit.
We won’t be over there for long, so I hope we find time to do at least most of these things. And when you read this, my daughter and I will once again be across the country from each other with pleasant memories of our trip and great relief at being home.
Deadly Wedding (The Deadly Series)
2nd in Series
Cozy Historical Mystery
Setting – England
JDP Press (October 17, 2016)
Paperback: 318 pages
E-Book 266 pages
Why murder a dying man?
Olivia Denis is hesitant to help an old family friend get ready for her wedding outside London. The so-called friend is a master at using people. As a young widow trying to find her way through a new romantic relationship, Olivia would rather avoid the large party.
She definitely didn’t plan to find the bride’s grandfather stabbed to death. The cruel, enormously rich aristocrat had changed his will only the day before, angering all his children.
As Olivia is forced to investigate the murder, she’s called away by her employer, the owner of an influential London daily newspaper. She must carry out another secret assignment, one that will take her to Vienna, now part of Nazi Germany.
With war on the horizon and attacks on the old man’s family increasing, can Olivia find a way to save lives in two countries?
This is another fabulous story from Kate Parker.
Olivia Denis is back and getting ready for a wedding of an old family friend. The problem is this friend is treating her more like a servant than a life long friend and Olivia just goes along with it to keep the peace just to get through a wedding that had already been postponed more than once. When the bride goes to her grandfather’s room before the service Olivia is dragged along. What they find is the man dead with a knife in his chest and the bride tells her to keep it mum until after the wedding. Thankfully one of the real servants notifies the authorities. The bride begs Olivia to find the killer and we readers are off on another investigation with Olivia Denis.
The main plot is strong and compelling, the subplots are excellent and just as compelling. Kate Parker sets the scene, introduces the characters and draws us right in from the very first page. Olivia also makes a very dangerous journey for her employer and that part had me holding my breath. That coupled with the death and subsequent drama made for a book that was impossible to put down.
I discovered Kate Parker through her Victorian Mystery Series where she kept topping herself in each new book and now with this Deadly Series she is doing the exact same thing. I loved the historical aspects to the story along with the great mystery. The characters are colorful, unique and realistic for the time period. I love what a strong woman Olivia Denis is and the way she takes on whatever is asked of her. She doesn’t do anything halfway.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Kate Parker has wanted to travel to 1930s England since she read her mother’s Agatha Christie and Dorothy Sayers mysteries when she was a schoolgirl. After many years of studying science, she decided a time travel machine was out of the question so she found herself limited to reading about the period and visiting historic sites. Her love of this fascinating and challenging period led her to the research from which the Deadly series grew. Eventually, she found it necessary to spend several days in the British Library reading old newspapers, which meant another trip to England. Near Christmas. A sacrifice she’d gladly make every year.
The first story in the series is Deadly Scandal, released January 14, 2016.
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October 17 – Back Porchervations – Review
October 18 – A Holland Reads – Review, Giveaway
October 19 – Books, Dreams, Life – Review, Spotlight
October 20 – Shelley’s Book Case – Review, Giveaway
October 21 – The Power of Words – Review
October 21 – StoreyBook Reviews – Spotlight, Giveaway
October 22 – Cozy Up With Kathy – Review
October 23 – Brooke Blogs – Guest Post, Spotlight, Giveaway
October 23 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & sissy, Too! – Spotlight, Giveaway
October 24 – Booklady’s Booknotes – Review
October 25 – Island Confidential – Interview, Giveaway
October 26 – Deal Sharing Aunt – Review, Giveaway
October 26 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – Cozy Wednesday
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”