*Why this book? Well, Ana sold me completely on the Harriet Vane/Peter Wimsey books. Anything she loves as much as she loves these, just has to be awesome. I enjoyed the first, Strong Poison immensely, and Ana assures me they only get better. Secondly, I've been wanting to focus a little more on my happiness project, and Ana actually put this on my list of books to read. And finally, it's still RIP time, and I've been focusing my reading on almost exclusively RIP-ish books and wanted to continue with that. Not sure I'll finish it before RIP ends, as my reading-purely-for-fun time is a bit slim at the moment, but that's okay as I always have a hard time saying goodbye to all the RIP-goodness at the end of October anyway.
*And we're off to a wonderful start, this book and I. Don't you just love it when you are completely charmed with a book right from the very first paragraph?!!
*New-to-me word alert: scabious (p. 3). Context told me it was some sort of plant, but I had never heard of it.
Scabious--a plant of the teasel family, with pink, white, or (most commonly) blue pincushion-shaped flowers
*I remember being surprised and delighted by the humor in Strong Poison. But still the humor in this book caught me off-guard. And yes, it still delights me.
*"Acid drops"--what the heck are they? Not the same as dropping acid, that much I can tell. Maybe antacids? Google, here I come...
Ah, sour balls! Hmmm, acid drops is a far cooler name...I do think I shall have to adopt it.
*Page 103: Inspector Umpelty is telling Vane and Wimsey that the folks who live along the shore simply aren't talking.
...They're a surly lot, those Pollocks and Moggeridges, and up to no good, in my opinion....
Okay, that just made me bust out laughing. Pollock is my Mom's family name. I've never thought them to be overly surly myself. :P
*Page 153: Yeah, so here I am enjoying the hell out of this book for all its wit and humor and whatnot...and then bam! I'm blindsided and left all teary-eyed. And no, it's not that anything overtly sad happened. It's just that I was totally caught up in the rawness and honesty Sayers poured onto these pages in this conversation between Harriet and Peter. These characters who are so aware and disheartened by the strictures that society places on people. Characters that refuse to buy into these strictures but are forced to accept the realities of how they will be/are viewed for it.
*New-to-me word: tarradiddle (p. 232). A petty lie; fib. Or silly pretentious speech or writing.
I am infatuated with this word!
*Oh, Ms. Sayers, I love the way you can make a book feel like a total comfort read, and yet bring up really important social matters. I'm sure that's not a combination that is easy to achieve, but you seem to do it so effortlessly, so flawlessly.
*New-to-me word: purlieus (p. 278). The area near or surrounding a place. Or person's usual haunts.
Another useful word for the arsenal.
*Ummmm...is it just me of are things getting a wee tad far-fetched here???
*LOL. Thank you, Harriet. She, too, thought things getting a bit stretched for the imagination. :) (p. 297)
*Okay, we're no longer "along the way"...our internet went out and stayed out for over a week, during which time I finally finished this book. Yes, it took me over two months(!!!) to read this book. Now you might be tempted to think that means I didn't like it all the much since it took me that long to read it, but you would be wrong. In fact, the exact opposite it true. The fact that I stuck with a book when I was only managing to fit in a few pages a day is actually testament to how much I did enjoy it!
*I'm going to have to say that the mystery itself wasn't my favorite part of this book, which is not the same as saying that I didn't like it. But oh my gosh, what really makes me love this book is the dynamic, the banter, the honesty between Harriet and Peter. It makes me sad to think that I've only got two more books with them to go. (Though I know, thanks to my implicit trust of Ana's opinions, that the best is yet to come.) Seriously, is there a more fun couple? Real question, actually--do you know of any other couples that I really need to read???
Reading this also completed an item for my happiness project--from Ana's list of books. Of course, even if she hadn't put this on my list, I would have thought of her the entire time I read it anyway. :D