An embarrassment of riches on this week’s list, but I think this was my favourite. Lots of stuff from it will be making appearances in other posts soon too – in fact the only thing against Hither, Page being this week’s pick is that I sort of wanted it for my Christmas reading post, which is taking longer to put together than I was expecting because I haven’t liked a lot of the stuff that I’ve been reading with an eye to including it. But this wasn’t on the original list of potentials for the Christmas post, so I don’t feel too bad about it. Anyway, on to the book.
Hither, Page is a murder mystery and romance set in Britain in the aftermath of World War Two. James Sommers has come back from the war to work as the doctor in the village that he lived in as a child. After he catches his cleaning lady looking through his patient records and snooping in his flat he lets her go. But soon she’s found dead after a dinner party at the Big House and James feels like the peace of his post-war sanctuary has been shattered. Leo Page works for one of the shadowier (and possibly dodgier) bits of the British secret service and is surprised to be sent to a sleepy village to investigate a charlady’s death. Soon Leo and James are crossing paths – one as as he tries to solve the crime, the other he tries to get his village back to normal – or at least that’s what he thinks he’s doing.
I think you all know me well enough to know that this plot summary ticks quite a lot of my boxes – murder mystery, mid-twentieth century, secret services connection and it’s sort of enemies forced to work together. It’s funny and snarky and has a great cast of supporting characters who – as it’s the first of a series – we should hear more from in books to come. What is not to love.
I’m always after a new historical mystery series, and Cat Sebastian was one of my 2018 Obsessions as I worked my way through her back catalogue so this is practically a Venn diagram all on its own. My only complaints were that it wasn’t long enough and as it’s the first in the series I now have to wait impatiently for the next installment which doesn’t even have a name yet it’s so long away. However in writing this post I realised that there is another Cat Sebastian book due out soon (in December and I’ve got it pre-ordered already, well done PastVerity) which is good, but I think we’ve just ruled that out of BotW contention if I read it straightaway, which I think we all know I will. Hey ho (ho, ho), you can’t win them all.