I have only had time to read the first in this collection of short stories but, if that is representative I can promise you, not only an entertaining read, but one which could easily have been penned by the Doctor, himself.
It has all the twists and turns of the originals and has clues that only the great Holmes could even think of looking for. With giants, dwarves, missing weapons, a murdered beauty and jealous suitors all packed into the first tale, Paul has written an excellent imitation Holmes story and I look forward to reading the rest of the book when it is released soon.
I've saved the really good news till last. Paul has agreed to call in and sign copies on the evening of the Moreton Christmas Lights Switch On. That's the 27th November. He'll be here shortly after 5pm.
Lesley Cookman's signing went off without a hitch apart from her excursion to a few pretty villages on the way to the shop. We could tell what a lovely lady she is, long before she arrived, as waiting for her was a shop full of her friends, many of them authors.
The photo shows just some of them - Susan Alison (the illustrator of the map in Lesley's books), Gilli Allen, Adrian Magson, Lesley Cookman, Katie Fforde, Jane Gordon-Cumming (her sister) Hazel Cushion (the publisher who kindly bought a generous supply of wine and nibles). There were others too - we couldn't fit them all in. It was quite a party atmosphere. We hope you will all come again.
Many thanks to Lesley and Hazel and all their friends (Hazel's daughters too). To all our customers who came along too. We hope you are well into Libby Sarjeant's mysteries by now and we're sure you will soon be back for more.
We have become aware that many of our regulars are having difficulties finding us. On several occasions recently, customers have had to be escorted into the shop, by a local police person, after they have spent some time, wandering around the town, looking for us. One of these desperate searches had apparently lasted for four days and the customer finally arrived, hungry, cold and exhausted. He was given tea and banana cake until he recovered.
The reason for the problem is, apparently, the colour of the front door. We have had to keep it closed during the recent cold spell and customers, used to the cream door, open or shut, have turned away and continued hunting when confronted with the new colour.
So now you finally know what is behind the Green Door!
A'Norman' view of the ancient Manor at Hemingford Grey (Lucy M Boston's Green Knowe'). It is, perhaps, the oldest continuously inhabited house in England (built shortly after William claimed the kingdom in 1066) The house can be toured by arrangement.
I was pleased to see St Christopher at the garden of Green Knowe. Many things mentioned in the books are present in the house - the children's toys, Feste's name board, Wait and See etc but it was great to see St Christopher. These gardens make a very worthwhile visit through the spring and summer, especially when the scented roses are in bloom. The picture, right, shows the view from the entrance of the garden.
Some of my all time favourite children's titles are the Green Knowe books written by Lucy M Boston. They start with The Children of Green Knowe (televised once but they really should put it on our screens again) and the second in the series is The Chimneys of Green Knowe. This has been filmed as 'From Time To Time' (A ridiculous name change which effortlessly loses the Green Knowe fan base) and may be found in a rural cinema near you. Why it has not found a major distributor, we'll never know. With Maggie Smith taking a major part, one would think someone would jump at it.
Then came The River at Green Knowe, to my mind the least successful, followed by her Carnegie medal winner, A Stranger at Green Knowe. The last two are An Enemy at Green Knowe and The Stones of Green Knowe (far more deserving of the title 'From Time To Time' but I still would not have changed it.)
So, what does all this have to do with the here and now? Well, after a family wedding in St Neots, the group I was with diverted from our homeward route today, to drop in at The Manor at Hemingford Grey. This treasure of an old house is where Lucy Boston lived while writing all the books and which is actually Green Knowe.
Delighted there to meet old friend Diana Boston who told me about the release of 'From Time To Time'. Some venues can be found on www.fromtimetotimemovie.comDo get along to see it if you get the chance and drop us a line if you do. Also, try Children of Green Knowe, a classic of children's literature which we always have in stock.
Just arrived - we now have Agatha Raisin's Companion in the shop. No, not the cat, nor one of her many boyfriends. This is The Agatha Raisin Companion - a must for every fan of MC Beaton's amazing string of hits.
It is full of detail not found in the novels It contains what is virtually a potted biography, an insight into village life of Carsley, a quiz and even some of the recipes mentioned in the books.
We have a book signing hopefully lined up for Saturday 13 November when all her books will be available.
MC Beaton fans will not believe their luck when they see the sudden flurry of new titles from their favourite author.
Just in - Agatha Raisin and the Busy Body. There are rather too many suspects when a 'Health and Safety' employee is found dead for he seems to have upset nearly everyone in Carsely. So, as usual, Agatha has to sort it out. As if she hasn't got enough to do at Christmas!
The good news doesn't stop there, however. There are four murder mysteries set in Edwardian times too in which Lady Rose Summers teams up with Captain Harry Cathcart in a familiar mix of murder and romance. The titles are Snobbery with Violence , Hasty Death, Sick of Shadows and Our Lady of Pain.
On the horizon - an Agatha Raisin Companion. A must-have for all her fans.
We hope to see MC Beaton in our store signing all or any of these books on the morning of Saturday 13th November. Watch for details.