Thursday, April 07, 2016

What is Karen Odden reading?

Featured at Writers Read: Karen Odden, author of A Lady in the Smoke: A Victorian Mystery.

Her entry begins:
I just handed in the manuscript for my next novel, Down a Dark River, to my agent a few weeks ago; until I hear a verdict from him, I binge read like a crazy person, all the books that have piled up on my nightstand. So this past month I’ve read thirteen books. These are five of my favorites, each from a different genre.

First, When Breath Becomes Air. Because everyone is reading it. And because, probably, everyone should be reading it. It’s heartbreaking, empathic, beautifully written; it reaches far beyond the hackneyed message of "make the most of what's left.” The author, a neurosurgeon who died of lung cancer at 36, asks openly, how do we find our values, in the middle of crisis, when life has been upended? And then how do we find them again, the next day, when something else has changed? One of my favorite parts of this book was his acknowledgement, early on, that...[read on]
About A Lady in the Smoke, from the publisher:
Karen Odden’s enthralling debut historical mystery transports readers to Victorian England, where a terrifying railway disaster plunges a headstrong young noblewoman into a conspiracy that reaches to the highest corridors of power.

Following a humiliating fourth Season in London, Lady Elizabeth Fraser is on her way back to her ancestral country estate when her train careens off the rails and bursts into flames. Though she is injured, she manages to drag herself and her unconscious mother out of the wreckage, and amid the chaos that ensues, a brilliant young railway surgeon saves her mother’s life. Elizabeth feels an immediate connection with Paul Wilcox—though society would never deem a medical man eligible for the daughter of an earl.

After Paul reveals that the train wreck was no accident, and the inspector who tried to prevent it dies under mysterious circumstances, Elizabeth undertakes a dangerous investigation of her own that leads back to her family’s buried secrets. The more she learns, the more she must risk. Not only are her dowry and her reputation at stake; Paul’s very life hangs in the balance when he is arrested for manslaughter. As the trial draws near, and Parliament prepares for a vote that will change the course of the nation, Elizabeth uncovers a conspiracy that has been years in the making. But time is running out for her to see justice done.
Visit Karen Odden's website.

Writers Read: Karen Odden.

--Marshal Zeringue