Well, this is awkward.
I bought this book after a couple rave reviews here on CBR. As with many of my CBR reads, it’s a bit outside my usual repetoire. This is my first CBR DNF. I’m not even sure if that’s CBR legal. Can I review if I didn’t finish? I’m going with the “ask for forgiveness, not permission” route.
For a while I was attending an ARC book club at the local bookstore. Each member registers and gets to borrow an Advanced Reader Copy from the store, read it, and come to the meeting to review it in person and hear everyone else’s review. It’s a great way to hear about all the new books coming out (and a great way for the owner to learn about all the new stuff without having the personal time to read every single one). It soon became clear that the books found their way to the right readers each month. Anything about WWII was earmarked for one member, a young teacher scooped up most of the YA. There was a romance fan. And the group leader went for what she called “cozy mysteries”. I never knew what that really meant until I started this book.
Amelia Peabody is an intelligent and spirited spinster of means setting out on a trip to Egypt. Along the way she meets Evelyn, who is more of a caricature of a young Victorian woman (complete with fainting). Amelia befriends Evelyn and takes her on her travels where they meet archaeologist brothers Emerson and Walter. Hijinks ensue. Mummies, long-lost cousin lovers, violence, mystery.
- I totally understand that Amelia is an awesome female character who behaved ahead of her time. She’s opinionated, strong, resourceful, and not afraid to insert herself right into anything considered a man’s territory. I liked her.
- The writing. Also a con.
- I just couldn’t continue inside the Scooby-Doo plot. I kept trudging along thinking “something will happen, something will happen”, but when I started incessantly picturing Walter and Evelyn as Fred and Daphne, I just couldn’t go on.
- The writing. Appreciated but not enjoyed. Since we get Amelia’s Victorian-era POV it was all too formal for me.
I bailed at 70%. As I approach my forties I’ve been giving myself permission to bail on books I’m not enjoying. I’m pretty sure that my midlife crisis is shaping up to be a freakout about there not being enough time left to read everything I want to read. (Or I could go the convertible + pool boy route, who knows.)
Clearly, one of these CBR reviews is not like the other. This book appears to be beloved by many, many readers and my review should taken with a grain of margarita salt.