I fell in love with Barnes & Noble Edina before the event even started. You might remember me picking up som cosy crime from Joseph-Beth Booksellers in Ohio? One of them was Laurie R. King’s The Beekeeper’s Apprentice. I was immediately fascinated by the premise, and the courage of the author. I would definitely not have been brave enough to bring back Sherlock Homes and pair him with a feminist fifteen year old, eventually to marry him off to her.
There’s at least thirteen books in the serie, so now I am hunting them down in bookshops across the US. This often happens when I travel. For example, in Ireland I stumbled over a used copy of Georgette Heyer’s The Grand Sophy, and fell in love right away. Fortunately for me, her books had just been reprinted, and they appear in no particular order, so I just bought eight or ten or twelwe and looked myself in a hotel room. I don’t remember exactly how many I bought in Dublin, but I do remember I had to constantly leave them behind because they didn’t fit in my suitcase. And in London only a year or two ago I read a book by Julia Quinn, and then I had to find the other books in the Bridgerton-serie, of course (while frantically sending text messages to Simona Ahrnstedt about it; my romance-writer friend).
And now it’s Laurie King’s Mary Russel. It’s a struggle, reading a serie when you’re on the road. The challenge of course is backlist: older books written by an author or in a serie. Not all bookshops have them. They might have the last book or the first book, and if they’re big, they might even have a few in between, but the chance of finding, say, number three in the serie? Or number five? You have to develop a determination bordering on obsession bordering on addiction to manage it. Oh well, who am I kidding? Crossing all borders well into addiction.
I mention these number because Barnes & Noble Galleria managed to find both for me.
I was visiting another Barnes & Nobles to sign some stock and asked about it, and the very kind woman took it upon herself to call all the bookshops close by to see if anyone had number three. The Galleria-one did.
“Thta’s great”, said Lathea. “Because we’re going there tomorrow. We can get it then.”
And then she saw my face, which must have been both incredulous and shocked.
“Or today!” she said, very quickly. “Let’s go today!”
Of course, by next day, when the event was, I already needed number five. And they had it!
Ps. The event was lovely too!