It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

This weekly meme is hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It's been a while since I participated in this meme (the beginning of December last year) and I've missed seeing what you are all doing and reading.

I've re-joined the work force after over a year off and am now working at a local motel, in one of the main tourist areas of country Victoria. As you can imagine, summer is a very busy time. Going back to work has been a shock to my system, but I'm enjoying it, though the hot, humid weather Melbourne and other parts of Victoria are experiencing is very draining.

I'm still reading, but my blog has been neglected. I'm still trying to write a wrap up post for my 2016 reading challenges and decide which challenges to participate in this year.

My first book for 2017 was Coachman which I read in a day and loved. Lots of historical detail regarding the ins and outs of the coaching industry made this a very interesting read.

Fiona Buckley's Late Harvest was also good. She normally writes novels set in Tudor times, namely the Ursula Blanchard mystery series, which I've yet to read.

I also enjoyed Daughter of the Murray by Darry Fraser. A lovely romance, which doesn't run smoothly due to an impetuous heroine, who rails against the constraints of being a female in the late Victorian era.

My current read is The Strangler Vine, the first in a series by M.J. Carter. It is slow paced, but I'm loving the historical aspect of India and its culture.

I'm not quite sure what I'll be reading next, but The Infidel Stain,  the second book in M.J. Carter's series is in my TBR pile and I'm liking the first book enough to carry on with the series.

What I Read Last Week

Coachman by Sue Millard

Queen Victoria is crowned, and England is at peace, but 1838 isn't a good year to be a coachman, not even when you're good looking and ambitious. George Davenport travels to London with his bride Lucy, determined to make the most of his skill in driving a four-in-hand of horses. But industry is hitting its stride, and as the railways begin to open across the country they threaten to kill off the work he loves.
George finds employment with William Chaplin, the "Napoleon of coaching," but he discovers that the boss's daughter has designs on him that have nothing to do with his driving - and she isn't used to taking "No" for an answer.

Late Harvest by Fiona Buckley

Exmoor, 1800. When farmer s daughter Peggy Shawe meets the charismatic Ralph Duggan, son of a so-called free trader, it s love at first sight. Determined to prevent the match, Peggy s widowed mother sends her daughter to live with the Duggans for six weeks, believing she will be put off marriage to Ralph when she discovers what life is like among a smuggling family.
Matters take a dramatic turn however when Ralph s brother Philip is suspected of murder, and Ralph and Philip are despatched to distant relatives across the Atlantic. Heartbroken, Peggy vows to be reunited with her lover one day. But it will be several years before she and Ralph are destined to meet again and in very different circumstances . . .

Daughter of the Murray by Darry Fraser

1890s, River Murray, Northern Victoria
Georgina Calthorpe is unhappy living with her indifferent foster family the MacHenry’s in their crumbling house on the banks of the River Murray.
Unlike the rest of the family, she isn’t looking forward to the return of prodigal son Dane. With good reason. Dane MacHenry is furious when on his return he finds his homestead in grave decline. Unaware that his father has been drinking his way through his inheritance, he blames Georgina and Georgina decides she has no option but to leave. Unfortunately she chooses Dane’s horse to flee on, and when Dane learns she has stolen his prized stallion, he gives chase. From this point their fates become intertwined with that of a businessman with a dark secret, Conor Foley, who offers Georgina apparent security: a marriage with status in the emerging nouveau-riche echelons of Melbourne. But none of them could imagine the toll the changing political and social landscape would have on homes, hearts and families. Will Georgina’s path lead her into grave danger and unhappiness, or will she survive and fulfil her destiny?

What I'm Reading Today

The Strangler Vine by M.J. Carter 

Calcutta 1837. The East India Company rules India - or most of it; and its most notorious and celebrated son, Xavier Mountstuart, has gone missing.
William Avery, a down-at-heel junior officer in the Company's army, is sent to find him, in the unlikely company of the enigmatic and uncouth Jeremiah Blake. A more mismatched duo couldn't be imagined, but they must bury their differences as they are caught up in a search that turns up too many unanswered questions and seems bound to end in failure.
What was it that so captivated Mountstuart about the Thugs, the murderous sect of Kali-worshippers who strangle innocent travellers by the roadside? Who is Jeremiah Blake and can he be trusted? And why is the whole enterprise shrouded in such secrecy?
In the dark heart of Company India, Avery will have to fight for his very life, and in defence of a truth he will wish he had never learned.

What I Hope To Read Next

The Infidel Stain by M.J. Carter

It's 1841, and three years after we left them at the close of The Strangler Vine, Blake and Avery are reunited in very different circumstances in London. There has been a series of dreadful murders in the slums of the printing district, which the police mysteriously refuse to investigate, and Blake and Avery must find the culprit before he kills again.


  1. It's good to see a new post from you. I'm glad you're enjoying going back to work. I read The Strangler Vine last year and loved it - I can't wait to read the next book in the series!

    1. Thanks, Helen. I think it was your review of The Strangler Vine that made me grab this book when I saw it on the library shelf.