Not Small Change

Is it a publisher’s thing to promote everything as a trilogy? Familiarity breeds better book sales, probably. That said, this second book in a series, Ha’penny is a great mystery that picks up on one of my favorite reads from last year, Farthing, reviewed here while in progress.

Half a Crown is expected to conclude the series from the Welsh-born fantasy author Jo Walton.

These are excellent books, and they operate as mysteries set within a late 1940’s in which Britain has made peace with the Nazis only to find the political homefront dominated by fascist sympathies as Jews, communists, and other “undesirables” are “hounding” the good British sensibilities of an alliance with Hitler.

As with the other novel in the series, chapters alternate between the points of view of the brilliant detective Carmichael and a female character. In this case, Viola, an actress preparing for her role in Hamlet, a very special Shakespearean performance for the German Führer and his ally, the new PM in Britain. Viola’s estranged blue blood family is caught up in an assassination plot, and she finds herself drawn in as she prepares for the role of a lifetime.

I can’t recommend Walton’s novels highly enough. I enjoyed her latest just a bit more.


About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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