A light week of only five books this time (but I have over two hundred cookies to show for my lack of reading). My favorite cookie is the German Slices, an almond shortbread. My favorite book was Richard Hack's "unauthorized" biography of Agatha Christie, Duchess of Death.
Aside from her sensational "disappearance" in 1926 as her marriage was falling apart, the shear volume of work Christie created is her most amazing legacy. She had almost no formal schooling and by all accounts was considered an average, if imaginative, child. She had two rejections from publishers before her first work, A Mysterious Affair at Styles was printed.
Yet Christie, who, by her own admission, wanted only to "entertain" did exactly that with 95 books, many of which are still read and enjoyed today. Most of which have truly inventive twists.
Hack is even-handed in his portrayal of the author. The biography contains more events and occasions than it does personal insights, but where he does venture into the personal, it's with compassion. Her weaknesses are gently probed, but her strengths are celebrated.
After years of enjoying her books and stories, I learned a little about the lady herself.