Adventure, bingeable series, mystery, Series I love

Series I Love: Vicky Bliss

So I’ve finally finished my Vicky Bliss reread after getting distracted on the Phryne Fisher read. And so today’s series I love is dedicated to the *other* Elizabeth Peters series…

Vicky Bliss is an art historian, who specialises in medieval Europe. Across the course of six books she careers around Europe and Egypt in the search for missing items and trying to solve mysteries. In the first book she is working at a university in the US, but as a result of that adventure, she gets a job in Munich, which becomes her home base for the rest of the series.

In contrast to Amelia Peabody, Vicky is tall and blonde, but the two women share an adventurous spirit and a tendency to attract all sorts of men. In Borrower of the Night Vicky is challenged to track down a missing masterpiece of wood carving in a strange castle in Germany and ends up in competitions with her her sort of boyfriend. Thankfully she sees the light with him very early on and by the end of the book she has acquired a new friend and sidekick and in the second book gets a much more satisfactory love interest who continues through the rest of the series. Across the books there is ancient gold of various types, ancient relics and forged jewellery. You are best reading them in order because characters from one book do pop up in others which will spoil some resolutions for you

They’re set in what you might call the floating now – the first one was originally set when it was written in the 1970s and Peters wrote the first five over the course of about 20 years before returning to the series in the mid 2000s to write one final adventure. Now technology didn’t change that much between the mid 1970s and the early 1990s, so there are a few things but you don’t really notice, or at least it doesn’t really jar.But if you read them all back to back and you get to the final book where there is the internet and mobile phones I suggest you have a little pause (like I did!) before you read the final book and then take heed of Peters’ introduction where she says basically just go with it. It is work it because it has call backs to previous books in the series and more. In fact the final two books both feature Egypt, and there a few Amelia references thrown in there for those in the know!

As we know, I’m a sucker for an adventure caper and these are so much fun. I hadn’t read them since before the Pandemic, and I curse myself for a fool for not having thought to revisit them sooner. I’ve been trying to pick a favourite but I’m unable to chose between them – it comes down to Silhouette in Scarlet and Night Train to Memphis I think, but really they all have things to recommend them.

If you want to read these, there are paperback editions – which Amazon claims to have in stock but I suspect no one else will. But they’re in all the usual ebook places as far as I can see and Borrower of the Night is 99p on Kindle and Kobo atow, so it’s got to be worth a look.

Enjoy!

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