the Little Red Reviewer

Posts Tagged ‘Victorian England

 

To Say Nothing of the Dog came out in 1998.

 

We all need something happy right now.

 

So I’m going to spoil this book for you:

 

It has a happy ending.

 

It stars the world’s cutest doggo, and the world’s fluffliest cat.

 

No one dies.

 

Yes, this is a book in which no one dies,  comedies of manners take place, Victorian romances are not-quite thwarted by distractable chaperones,  yard sales are born, mysteries are solved by studying other mysteries, time travel happens every five minutes,  and you’ll laugh your head off.

 

While you can read Willis’s Oxford Time Travel books in nearly any order, since they all function as stand alones,  I’d recommend reading Doomsday Book first. It’ll give you a feel for Willis’s writing style, the rules of her time travel technology, it’ll tell you what you’re getting yourself into.  (and you have to read Blackout / All Clear as a duology, do NOT read All Clear first!)

 

Once you’ve finished Doomsday Book and you are done crying, you’ll be reading for something much lighter and much funnier.  It’s time for To Say Nothing of the Dog. You’ve earned it.

 

In the future, Lady Shrapnell refuses to take no for an answer.  She commandeers the time travel lab at Oxford to send hapless historians anywhen she pleases, so that her restoration of Coventry Cathedral can be perfect.

 

You can’t bring artifacts forward in time with you, but you can steal them away from a cathedral that is about to be bombed in the 1940 Blitz, hide them somewhere safe, and then 200 years later just happen to locate them in some granny’s attic. The one item the historians can’t seem to find is the Bishop’s bird stump.  What is a bird stump? Doesn’t matter, it’s just a Macguffin, and a cause for comedy as time travellers to say “The Bishop’s Bird Stump” ten times fast while trying to figure out what happened to it and why anyone would want to make something so hideous.

 

The only way to protect the time lagged historians from Lady Shrapnell’s wrath is to get them as far away from her as possible –  maybe a few hundred years away from her.

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some of the books reviewed here were free ARCs supplied by publishers/authors/other groups. Some of the books here I got from the library. the rest I *gasp!* actually paid for. I'll do my best to let you know what's what.