A summer reading experience with the circus…
Pick of the month - August 2011
Carol Birch "Jamrach’s menagerie"
Jaffy Brown is running through the London backstreets when he comes face to face with the escaped circus animal. His life is transformed by the encounter. Plucked from the jaws of death by Mr Jamrach, the two strike up a friendship. Before he knows it, Jaffy finds himself on board a ship bound for the South Seas.
Ann Featherstone "Walking in Pimlico"
Stumbling across Bessie Spooner's murdered body, comedian Corney Sage is caught in a tangle of deception and lies. He flees from his concert-room job in London's Whitechapel to a comfortable spa town, and then to a circus and music hall. But try as he might, he cannot elude the killer.
Philippa Gregory "Meridon"
Meridon is determined to escape the poverty of her childhood. Riding bareback in a show, while her sister risks her life on the trapeze, she dedicates herself to freeing them from danger and want. This is the third volume in the Wideacre trilogy.
Catriona McPherson "The Winter ground"
When a circus comes to spend the winter at the neighbouring estate to Gilverton, The allure of Tumbling Topsy Turvy, Tiny Truman and the Troupe Prebezhensky draws the attention of the fast set but when Dandy Gilver is asked to investigate a series of nasty tricks taking place in the circus she discovers, under the colourful charms on the surface of circus life, a hotbed of passion and resentment she cannot begin to understand.
Charles Finney "The Circus of Dr.Lao"
Abalone, Arizona, is a sleepy southwestern town those chief concerns are boredom and surviving the Great Depression - that is, until the circus of Dr Lao arrives and immensely and irrevocably changes the lives of everyone drawn to its tents.
Alanna Knight "Quest for a killer"
When the circus arrives in Edinburgh, Rose McQuinn is delighted. However, the much anticipated festivities are overshadowed by a curious set of crimes, involving the murder of a clerk during a bank robbery and, within hours of each other, the identical suicides of two young women.
Sarah Gruen "Water for Elephants"
When Jacob Jankowski - recently orphaned and suddenly adrift - jumps onto a passing train, he enters a world of freaks, grifters and misfits in the form of the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth, a travelling circus struggling to survive the Great Depression.
Erin Morgenstern "The Night Circus"
In 1886 a mysterious travelling circus becomes an international sensation. Open only at night, constructed entirely in black & white, the Cirque des Rves delights all who wander its circular paths. But behind the scenes a dangerous game is being played out by two young magicians, who are forced to test the limits of the imagination & love.
Alan Hunter "Gently does it"
When a timber merchant is found stabbed in Norchester, the local police find an obvious suspect in his son, a stunt rider in a circus. But Inspector Gently realises there is more to it than appears on the surface.