We heard from Alert Janeite Melinda, who let us know that Reginald Hill’s latest Dalziel and Pascoe book is out in the U.S. In the UK it was called A Cure for All Diseases, but in the U.S. the title is The Price of Butcher’s Meat (part of a quotation from Sanditon). Melinda wished to draw our attention to the dedication:
To Janeites everywhere
and in particular to those who ten years ago in San Francisco made me so very welcome at the Jane Austen Society of North America’s AGM, of which the theme was “Sanditon–A New Direction?” and during which the seeds of this present novel were sown. I hope that my fellow Janeites will approve the direction in which I have moved her unfinished story; or, if they hesitate approval, that they will perhaps recall the advice printed on a sweatshirt presented to me (with what pertinence I never quite grasped) after my address to the AGM
–Run mad as often as you chuse, but do not faint–
and at least agree that, though from time to time I may have run a little mad, so far I have not fainted!
This made us squee, naturally, and we ran (figuratively) to BooksonBoard and purchased the ebook version. We’ve read a few chapters, and it is definitely following along the plot of Sanditon. It’s quite cleverly done, with the chapters alternating between e-mails from Charlotte Heywood to her sister telling of the arrival of Mr. and Mrs. Parker at her father’s farm, and their travel to Sandytown, as it is called in this book, and Andy Dalziel, severely injured in a terrorist blast (in a previous book), arrived in Sandytown to convalesce, narrating his part of the story into a recording device as part of his therapy. Charlotte and the Parkers run into Andy (quite literally) and that’s where we stopped reading, as we have some more books to review first. But we are excited to pick it up again. The humor is earthy and the language can be vulgar, as a warning to those who do not like such things. There’s also a review of the book in Seacoastonline.com; the reviewer thinks reading some of the previous books might be useful for newbies to the series, of which we are one, but that’s what Wikipedia is for. 😉 Actually, if we enjoy the rest of this book as much as we did the first few chapters, we probably will look up some of the previous books.
As the title said, this has been a Mini Weekend Bookblogging, so always remember, Gentle Readers, as we’ve been saying all week: Books Are Nice!