....for my book club is Original Sin by P.D. James.
I am enjoying it far more than I expected to, and am in awe of her ability to capture characters with a few deft strokes.
As I was reading last night, I came across a sentence that rang so true that it made me laugh. It also brought the character sharply into focus. The murder has occurred, and the investigators are starting the first round of interrogation. Inspector Dalgliesh is interviewing the cleaner, a Mrs. Demery:
Dalgliesh said: "Mr. Gerard Etienne took over as chairman and managing director fairly recently, didn't he? Was he well liked?"
[Mrs. Demery replies] "Well he wouldn't have been carried out of here in a body bag if he was a little ray of sunshine about the place. Someone didn't like him, that's for sure....."
I laughed out loud, startling CAS out of his book. I've got Mrs. Demery on the brain now. In just a few sentences, the author has captured a whole person. That sensible, opinionated, working class woman. Love it.
And here is a Salon interview with P.D. James, in case you're interested!
The nicest little bit of info? Her favorite authors are Jane Austen, Evelyn Waugh and Anthony Trollope.