Monday, January 11, 2010

A Reading Rec From My Weekend Reading List

I always have a stack of books on my bedside table. In fact, it seems to grow exponentially! My goal, as each weekend approaches, is to spend the two days off relaxing as much as possible. Inevitably, I always set a reading goal that is nearly impossible to achieve.

In the case of this past weekend, I would have to say that I feel pretty good about my accomplishments. I finished two books and still had time to start a third as well as finishing off two Masterpiece DVDs from the rental queue (an adaptation of Wilkie Collins's Woman in White and Shadow in the North, the second Sally Lockhart mystery based on the books by Philip Pullman).

One of the books that I started this weekend was Eugenia Lovett West's Overkill, second in her Emma Streat series. Before I can tell you about that one, however, you know that I always have to introduce you to a series in order. So, without further adieu, here is a bit about the first Emma Streat installment, Without Warning:

When Emma Streat's husband is killed in a hit-and-run accident, Emma is devastated. Now in her forties with her children grown and gone, the retired opera singer will have to figure out how to start all over, alone. But when she discovers a strange note in her husband's office, and adds that to his odd behavior before the accident, Emma becomes convinced that there is something fishy going on. As she digs deeper, a dark web of deceit and conspiracies reveals itself and Emma has to wonder just what her husband may discovered and how far someone was willing to go to keep him quiet.

Without Warning is a strong and entertaining start to this new series. I consider it to be something of a melding of subgenres. It's a bit darker and more serious than the cozy you might think it is. From the beginning, I suspected that this was the case, but when West threw political intrigue and government conspiracies in the mix. Wow! Talk about a surprise! Not only was I not expecting that, but West definitely kept me guessing til the very end -- always a great aspect of any mystery! And Emma is a feisty and smart lead character that readers are going to absolutely adore.

Without Warning was released in 2007 and Overkill hit shelves this past fall. Eugenia Lovett West is currently working on the third installment to the Emma Streat series as we speak.

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