I stumbled across Sulari Gentill’s first historical crime fiction novel in a bookshop almost a year ago. I was in a bit of a reading slump having recently finished a great book and finding nothing else to my taste. Happily I really enjoyed that book and have been looking forward to its sequel, A Decline in Prophets, very much. I’ve had it on my shelves for a little while now (thanks kindly to Sulari for sending me a copy) but library books and awards shortlists have occupied my reading time of late. However, the book’s publication date is 1 July and I simply must read it before everyone else (or almost everyone else).
I’ve read the first 30 or so pages this afternoon (when I should have been doing some work) and it has started well, already grabbing my attention and drawing me back to the 1930’s. The book opens with our hero, Rowland ‘Rowly’ Sinclair, on board the luxury ocean liner RMS Aquitania recovering from the injury he received during the harrowing events of the first book. For seven months he and his bohemian friends have been travelling the world in style, thanks to the Sinclair family fortune. On board they have met an eclectic bunch of passengers including some real historical figures such as Annie Besant who was political activist for several causes and at one time was President of the Theosophical Society. Naturally, this being a crime novel after all, there has been a rather unpleasant death on board the boat and Rowly is implicated. What next I wonder?
It looks like I’m set for another adventure which will bring to life some more little-known events in Australian history and combine my interests in things artistic and political. How delicious.