Tuesday, January 31, 2017

What I've Been Reading — A Mystery and Some Inspiration

The Green Jacket by Jennette Lee

This 1917 book features a female detective who is so good that when the book opens she is being asked to merge with the other big detective agency in town. We soon learn that this lady has her own unique, independent thoughts about criminal justice. And, of course, a mystery soon comes along!

This is an unusual and winning story, the likes of which I haven't encountered before in a book of this sort. In some ways it is almost poetic. In Millie's approach to crime solving it is unique. The use of knitting is like a reversal of Madame DeFarge. Certainly in her insistence on the chance to rehabilitate criminals it is original to the period.

I listened to the audiobook read by one of my favorites from LibriVox, J. M. Smallheer. It is practically impossible to find the two sequels but I'm going to keep my eyes open for them.

I'm pretty sure I'll be featuring this on Forgotten Classic in the near future. It really captured me.

The Joy of Knowing Christ: Meditations on the Gospels by Pope Benedict XVI

This was a gift from a thoughtful reader of Happy Catholic and listener to A Good Story is Hard to Find.

The Joy of Knowing Christ is a selection of 55 excerpts from different homilies throughout the liturgical year. The selections all focus on reflections on gospel passages and, in many cases, opened up new meanings for me. I found them inspirational also and often went to the Vatican website to read the entire homily which was excerpted.

They are very accessible and short, usually no longer than two pages. That makes them perfect for daily reflection, which is how I used them. Highly recommended.


  1. Oooo. the Green Jacket is intriguing me! Especially since I also knit and I love detective novels!! I would love to find an actually written version! But I'll have to be content knitting while I listen!!

    1. I guess I should say that I did find hardback copies available for about $30. So that was no go! And the sequels are nowhere to be found. I hope you enjoy it!

  2. I saw those too...yikes...I have begun listening to the audiobook instead...while I don't enjoy audio books because I'm terribly tactile with my book reading, I am enjoying the story and am intensely intrigued with her character because she knits...and is somewhat older shall we say...like me?!!!

    1. Yes, the way she uses her knitting is a lot of fun. And her age may account for her different approach to the criminal justice system.