Showing posts from May 13, 2010

The Gentleman Detective

There’s something supremely satisfying about reading a really good historical novel. It’s the ultimate escape; it whisks us away from real-life problems, worries, and all the ugliness, with its visions of past wonders and a different way of life... while at the same time somehow reassuring us that the problems and the meanness of others have always been present, in some form. There’s a connectedness we can’t help but feel when reading an historical novel--which I, for one, very much enjoy. So, when a bit of mystery and a measure of suspense are added to the mix, I’m beyond happy; it’s a delightful combination, and rarely fails to entertain. One fine example--a very smart series still in its infancy, with only three books thus far--is Charles Finch’s set of Victorian mysteries featuring amateur gentleman sleuth Charles Lenox. Lenox is 40 years old, a bachelor of means, content to study ancient history (particularly ancient Rome) and write essays on such, to live the life of a London gent…