Rainy days, hot cider, and brisk temperatures mean that autumn is here, and with it, my favorite time of year: curl-up-with-a-good-book season (a long season that includes just about everything outside of Beach Reading season)! Here are two long, luscious books that beg to be read under a blanket with a mug of something hot.
The Thirteenth Tale, first and only novel of Diane Setterfield, has been continuously popular since its 2006 release. The rich atmospheric tone of this novel is perfectly matched to brisk fall weather and the thrilling plot will keep you turning the pages late into the night. Reclusive author Vida Winter has shrouded her identity and her history in lies and deceptions; her deathbed wish to set the record straight leads her to Margaret Lea, timid bookseller and sometime-biographer. Margaret is drawn into Vida’s story, a convoluted and compelling tale of crumbling Victorian houses, madwomen in the attic, tragedy, heartbreak, mystery, secrets, and love. When I read this book I could NOT put it down! DPL has recently acquired a brand-new “book club in a box” kit for this book; book club kits include 10+ copies of the book, tips for starting a book club, and a list of discussion questions. They check out for 6 weeks. The Thirteenth Tale book club kit is coming soon!
Sarah Waters’ Fingersmith is spectacularly Victorian, bursting with madhouses, ladies’ maids, and enough absurd coincidences and precocious orphans to make Charles Dickens blush. It’s the story of aristocratic Maud Lilly and orphaned Sue Trinder, who goes to work for the Lilly family intending to rob Maud blind. The twists and turns that ensue, along with Waters’ sharp wit and snappy pacing, make this novel truly unforgettable. If you’re hooked on this historical, atmospheric vibe, try Waters’ other novels: Affinity, The Little Stranger, and Tipping the Velvet.