Like Henry James, Smith clearly believes that relations stop nowhere; unlike James, he seems determined to trace every...




Seventy-eight more slices of low-key comedy, originally serialized in the Daily Telegraph, concerning the denizens of Pimlico’s Corduroy Mansions and their lovers, friends and unavoidable relatives.

The outlook isn’t good for wine merchant William French and his caterer friend Marcia, who keeps coming out with too many nitwit remarks for him to take seriously, or for his downstairs neighbor Caroline and her fellow art student James, a sensitive, sympathetic mysophobe who’s not into physical expressions of attachment. But literary agent Barbara Ragg’s new romance with Hugh Macpherson defangs her long-standing feud with her partner Rupert Porter, exacerbated now by a new problem: the agency’s mild, delusional client Errol Greatorex, who’s mistakenly been encouraged to serve as amanuensis for the Abominable Snowman’s autobiography. And psychotherapist Berthea Snark, still gathering material for her tell-all biography of her son Oedipus, the most loathsome Liberal Democrat in Parliament, never seems to have a nice day, especially now that her brother, clueless mystic Terence Moongrove, has fallen in with a pair of sharpies determined to fleece him. But Caroline’s herbalist flatmate Dee has had a notable idea that may just take off—marketing gingko bilboa as a remedy for failing sudoku fans—and William’s faithful Pimlico terrier, Freddie de la Hay, vaults to a leading role when he’s recruited by Sebastian Duck of MI6 to spy on neighborhood Russian blackmailer Anatoly Podgornin. As in his series debut (Corduroy Mansions, 2009), Smith places exactly the same emphasis on the cloak-and-dagger histrionics of espionage; the pursuit of the yeti through Fortnum & Mason; and the question of who stood whom up for dinner, Caroline or James. The results will charm fans who thought 44 Scotland Street (2005) and its sequels should have been set in London.

Like Henry James, Smith clearly believes that relations stop nowhere; unlike James, he seems determined to trace every single one of them to its vanishing point.

Pub Date: June 21, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-307-37973-3

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Pantheon

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2011

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A romantic, sad, and ultimately hopeful book that’s perfect for fans of Jojo Moyes.


In Walsh’s American debut, a woman desperately tries to find out why the man she spent a whirlwind week with never called.

Sarah has just separated from her American husband and is visiting her hometown in England when she meets Eddie. He’s kind and charming, and although they only spend one week together, she falls in love. When he has to leave for a trip, she knows they’ll keep in touch—they’re already making plans for the rest of their lives. But then Eddie never calls, and Sarah’s increasingly frantic efforts to contact him are fruitless. Is he hurt? Is he dead? As her friends tell her, there’s a far greater likelihood that he’s just blowing her off—she’s been ghosted. After trying to track Eddie down at a football game, Sarah starts to become ashamed of herself—after all, she’s almost 40 years old and she’s essentially stalking a man who never called her. But as Sarah slowly learns, she and Eddie didn’t actually meet randomly—they both have a connection to an accident that happened years ago, and it may have something to do with why he disappeared. The tension quickly amps up as the secrets of Eddie’s and Sarah’s pasts are revealed, and the truth behind their connection is genuinely surprising and heartbreaking. The barriers between Sarah and Eddie seem insurmountable at times, and although their issues are resolved in a tidy manner, the emotions behind their actions are always believable. Walsh has created a deeply moving romance with an intriguing mystery and a touching portrait of grief at its heart.

A romantic, sad, and ultimately hopeful book that’s perfect for fans of Jojo Moyes.

Pub Date: July 24, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-525-52277-5

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Pamela Dorman/Viking

Review Posted Online: May 1, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2018

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An ambitious and bewitching gem of a book with mystery and passion inscribed on every page.

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A withdrawn graduate student embarks on an epic quest to restore balance to the world in this long-anticipated follow-up to The Night Circus (2011).

Zachary Ezra Rawlins is a typical millennial introvert; he likes video games, escapist reading, and drinking sidecars. But when he recognizes himself in the pages of a mysterious book from the university library, he's unnerved—and determined to uncover the truth. What begins as a journey for answers turns into something much bigger, and Zachary must decide whether to trust the handsome stranger he meets at a highflying literary fundraiser in New York or to retreat back to his thesis and forget the whole affair. In a high-wire feat of metatextual derring-do, Morgenstern weaves Zachary's adventure into a stunning array of linked fables, myths, and origin stories. There are pirates and weary travelers, painters who can see the future, lovers torn asunder, a menacing Owl King, and safe harbors for all the stories of the world, far below the Earth on the golden shores of a Starless Sea. Clocking in at more than 500 pages, the novel requires patience as Morgenstern puts all the pieces in place, but it is exquisitely pleasurable to watch the gears of this epic fantasy turn once they're set in motion. As in The Night Circus, Morgenstern is at her best when she imagines worlds and rooms and parties in vivid detail, right down to the ballroom stairs "festooned with lanterns and garlands of paper dipped in gold" or a cloak carved from ice with "ships and sailors and sea monsters...lost in the drifting snow." This novel is a love letter to readers as much as an invitation: Come and see how much magic is left in the world. Fans of Neil Gaiman and V.E. Schwab, Kelly Link and Susanna Clarke will want to heed the call.

An ambitious and bewitching gem of a book with mystery and passion inscribed on every page.

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-385-54121-3

Page Count: 512

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: Aug. 4, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2019

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