Thursday Shorts

Reynard the Fox

Reynard the Fox is a retelling of the Medieval tales about the wily fox and his adventures in Flanders. They are short stories arranged into a longer narrative – so if your pandemic brain can’t deal with a lot of text, these can be good. They’re short enough that you can read one or two before falling asleep at night, if that’s your thing.

The stories themselves are anthropomorphized animals arranged like a local lord and his court, with various characters trying to get into power or keep their power; all of it compromised by the fact that some animals need to eat others as a regular part of their diet. Imagine office politics, but with appetites and murder (though, can it be called murder if it’s a fox eating a hen to survive?). It’s enough to turn you into a vegetarian.

That might make you suspect: these stories are not for young kids. It’s like Grimm’s Fairy Tales with Cinderella’s sisters cutting off parts of their feet so they fit into the glass slipper. Teenagers might enjoy the stories, but don’t get this thinking you can read it to your five year old.

I enjoyed it, and would recommend to anyone who likes an adventure story.

Monday Shorts

Thursday Shorts

Headliners

Headliners is the latest published book in the London Celebrities series of romance novels by Lucy Parker. I find all of these books adorable; this is the first one that isn’t about a stage actor in London, though Sabrina, leading lady, has a sister on the stage (she was the protagonist from the prior book in the series) and is a television presenter. It’s an enemies-to-lovers romance story between her and a rival presenter, Nick; there are no surprises here. It’s a pretty straight-up romance.

Lucy Parker’s leading ladies are always warm and inviting; the men always seem to be a bit gruff and maybe demanding, but they all have hearts of gold. I will say that, as this is the fifth book in the series, it does help to have read the fourth book for a bit of background on the enemies part of the story, though I don’t think it’s strictly necessary. There are cameos from most of the couples in the previous books in the series (after all, they all have plays that need promoting on Sabrina’s and Nick’s morning television show).

There is another book in the series planned, and I’ll probably read that one too. Like I said, these are charming and warm and a nice bit of escapism as we finish off the first year of the pandemic.

Tuesday Shorts