No wind, no bird. The river flames like brass. / On either side, smitten as with a spell / Of silence, brood the fields. In the deep grass, / Edging the dusty roads, lie as they fell / Handfuls of shriveled leaves from tree and bush. ~ “August” by Lizette Woodworth Reese
Pulley creates details with such ease that the reader quickly accepts the ethereal beauty of the deep Andean forest. And she does so while keeping one foot in the reality of colonialism, missionaries, Victorian exploration and commerce. The reader will relish slowly absorbing the magic of The Bedlam Stacks.
Each of the Fandorin novels takes a slightly different tone, on purpose, as Akunin pays homage to the Doyle, Christie, and Fleming (Murder on the Leviathan is a take on Death on the Nile). The State Counsellor chapters alternate between spies of the dualling networks. The reader sees the push and pull and tangle from both sides.
Upon Beatrice’s arrival at the tea shop, she is quickly welcomed by the older women and their pet raven, Perdu. And she is equally quick to realize this will be no ordinary clerking position. Though she is not averse to magic, she has never really given it too much thought before.
A total solar eclipse is coming on August 21, 2017. The last time America experienced one like it was 1878. In the days of the Industrial Revolution, the western expansion, and explosive empirical discovery, America was eager to show well-heeled European scientists that they too could conduct successful observations.