The unimportance of sex in D K Mok’s Hunt for Valamon

D K Mok has moved away from the urban fantasy of her first novel, The One Tree (2014). Hunt for Valamon, as the name suggests, is in high fantasy mode, and it owes quite a lot to the backchat and irony style we are now conditioned to assume is how anyone with a sword and … Continue reading The unimportance of sex in D K Mok’s Hunt for Valamon

The horrible stepmother in The Optimist’s Daughter, by Eudora Welty

In this last script from the appalling fictional women podcasts, I’m in New Orleans, watching an old man die. Shortly after that, I’m in Mississippi, watching his daughter Laurel empty the private room where her dead mother’s things were kept in her childhood home, before her appalling step-mother sells the house with everything in it that Laurel … Continue reading The horrible stepmother in The Optimist’s Daughter, by Eudora Welty

The Golden Age detective novels of Ianthe Jerrold

I do like a classic detective novel from the British Golden Age. The reigning queens of the genre -  Dorothy L Sayers, Ngaio Marsh, Agatha Christie, Margery Allingham, and Josephine Tey - are superb novelists, and highly influential stylists. It would be a fine thing to discover forgotten writers who are as good as they are, … Continue reading The Golden Age detective novels of Ianthe Jerrold