I go through periods where I will read everything I can get my hands on and then others I’ll go months without picking up a book. I’d been in one of those funks for the last few months (the last book I read was a reread of Hunger Games trilogy before the most recent movie…so November?). After a book sale at a local library last week, I finally picked up a new books. And then immediately followed that with another.
Beneath a Marble Sky: a Love Story by John Shors
The story follows Princess Jahanara, daughter of the Emperor of 17th century Hindustan. After her mother tragically dies, her father commissions the building of the Taj Mahal. She meets and falls in love with the architect while fighting between her brothers threatens to tear the empire apart.
7 stars out of 10. Very enjoyable and easy to read. Also, it is the first historical fiction story I’ve read to take place in this time period and area and it was very intriguing to read something a bit outside my usual.
The Anatomy of Deception: a Novel of Suspense by Lawrence Goldstone
I followed a book rather out of the norm from me with a book that’s a bit closer to home. A thriller that takes place in Philadelphia, right across the bridge from my home in South Jersey. At the end of the 19th century, Dr. Carroll studies under a leading professor in the field, Dr. Osler. When the mysterious death of a young woman is followed by the murder of a coworker, Dr. Carroll uses logic and medicine to uncover a scandal.
6 stars out of 10. It was fine, okay. Kept me guessing and interested enough to finish reading in less than 48 hours. I’m not sure I’d ready again though.
One note that includes minimal spoilers and is pretty much a tangent on an unrelated and often controversial topic. When investigating Dr. Turk’s murder, Dr. Carroll suspects that he is dealing drugs and/or performing illegal operations on women. While it is not until the end of the book that we begin to discover what Dr. Turk was involved in prior to his death, it is referenced several times how easily women died or simply disappeared following complications in illegal surgeries such as these, these abortions. Fictional accounts like this, like Penny in Dirty Dancing, like the statistics of real living women which inspires fiction like this, is why I’m Pro Choice. My own spiritual beliefs aside, I know I come from a place with a lot of privilege, both a stable income and support system that would help me should I find myself in that situation. But many, many women were desperate enough to seek out an illegal surgery to fix it because they saw no other option, and many died for that decision. I firmly believe that should never happen again, not while it can be performed relatively safely and in an appropriate manner.
Alright that’s my rant for the day. I couldn’t stop thinking of this as I read through the book and just had to say it somewhere.