epiphany_maria (epiphany_maria) wrote,

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Book Reviews: Arsenic For Tea + Devoted Ladies + Jurassic Park

Arsenic For Tea by Robin Stevens
The 3rd ‘Wells and Wong Mystery’. It is 1935 and Daisy and Hazel visit Daisy’s home, Fallingford, for the holidays. Daisy’s mother has an intrusive gentleman friend, her aunt is appropriating various valuables and Hazel feels out of place among the worthies. Then someone falls mysteriously fatally ill and the schoolgirl detectives must discover whodunit. This was a top hole ripping yarn as murder is solved amongst the various isms of the era. This was good. Onto ‘First Class Murder’!

Best Lines:
“Daughter’s friend! Do I know you?”

“People in shock were supposed to have cold water poured over them.”

“She’s not a thief - people like us aren’t.”

“The bed smelled of stale old lady.”

“Daddy knows perfectly well not to murder his own guests.”

Devoted Ladies by Molly Keane
Published in 1935 this tale of Jessica and Jane hints that they are lovers. Jessica is violent, abusive and controlling but nobody ever does anything to help the pathetic alcoholic Jane. Anglo-Irish gentleman George Playfair meets Jane and entices her to Ireland where he and his racist classist friends give verification to his plan to marry Jane. As for Jane, she’ll go along with the marriage just to escape Jessica. But Jessica won’t be banished and the pathetic unpopular underappreciated Piggy who is desperately in love with George herself is drawn into the fray. This was terrible, dull and full of horribly racist people and controlled violence.

Best Lines:
“With this she picked up a bottle of Tonic Water and made menacing gestures with it across the room at Jane.”

“The floor (of green glass) had exotic lighting and heating below it.”

“Plenty of picturesque discomfort and cold bath water and these incredible Irish mountains always in the distance.”

“All that money and bullied to death by that octopus.”

Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton
Oddly boring and dated.
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