The Jackal’s Head

By Elizabeth Peters

I listened to the audio version of this novel I last read decades ago. Those were the days that I would comb the library shelves hoping against hope that a new title by this, my first favorite author, would be sitting there. I remembered very little except that one of the archaeologists the heroine hangs with ended up being one of the bad guys and one turns out to be the love interest.  It is a credit to Peters that she kept me guessing as to which one. As always, Peters’ wryly humorous voice shines through and is very enjoyable. It left me wishing that she had written a sequel featuring the two main characters. I wanted a lot more writing devoted to their relationship as it is an intriguing match up. For those used to Peters’ feminist sensibilities, this one predates her awakening. It makes for some uncomfortable passages in places.**3 stars out of 5**

March 5, 2017

The Love Talker

By Elizabeth Peters

The Love Talker has Elizabeth Peters’ signature banter between likeable witty protagonists, intriguing mystery, humor, and quirky characters. Her heroines are almost always scholarly, yet fun-loving, funny, and down-to-earth. This one has more shades of her Barbara Michaels personae because of the seeming paranormal element of the fairies in the woods. However in a Barbara Michaels version, **Spoiler**

there really would have been Fairies, in this one there is a logical “scientific” explanation.**end spoiler**

 It was clever. And until revealed, I was baffled as to what the explanation could be as to the paranormal elements and who the bad guys were. The solution was somewhat shocking. I had my suspicions, but could not put all of it together. That’s a good thing.

The Love Talker was not as good as I remembered it, however, primarily due to the abrupt ending. All of the loose ends were tied up as far as the mystery was concerned but we were really left hanging as far as the romance. **spoiler**

The one male character that ticked the usual BM/EP boxes was supposed to be her half-brother. Of course it is revealed that is not the case, but it is on the last page with her love interest out of the room. There is no interaction between the two after everything is out in the open! **end spoiler**

Now any fan of Barbara/Elizabeth knows that the romance is usually a side dish in her books, not the main entree, but this took it much too far. **3 stars out of 5**

November 19, 2016