Look, it's been a long and traumatic and incredibly stressful six months for me. In the last eight weeks, I have walked through the level of hell reserved for parents whose adult children are throwing themselves into a world of pain and madness and fight kicking and screaming every attempt to help them.
So that's very Valentine-y, isn't it? But perhaps a teensy bit of explanation for my longggggg silences online even when The Virgin's Spy released in November. And rest assured--I have not stayed in hell. Though it's there, threatening, living in a constant state of panic and despair accomplishes precisely nothing. So I'm clawing my way back into a world beyond my own home and family, and look! There are so many wonderful book people out here! Just what I need to remember who I am :)
Anyway, back to the matter at hand. It is Valentine's Week. In honor of love, I'm going to post each day about a fictional crush. Not necessarily in any sort of order--although I am leaving my Number One Crush for the last day.
For today, let's take a look at JOHN TREGARTH from the Vicky Bliss mysteries by Elizabeth Peters. Better known for her Amelia Peabody Egyptology series, Peters wrote six books about art historian Vicky Bliss and the mysteries she more or less falls into investigating. I fell in love with John the first time he ran away from a gun in THE STREET OF THE FIVE MOONS. Art thief and avowed coward, John is apt to break into bad jokes at the most inopportune moments. He is not averse to defrauding the rich, but he has zero interest in risking his life. He also has a bad habit of leaving Vicky to pay the bills and, although she never knows when he'll show up, she does know that he'll bring trouble with him. (When John is presumed drowned at the end of one book, Vicky proposes as his epitaph: "He hath no drowning mark upon him; his face is perfect gallows.")
But she can't resist his insane sense of humor and his esoteric knowledge of English poetry--until he shows up with a pretty little wife and in the company of dangerous men in NIGHT TRAIN TO MEMPHIS. I defy anyone to read that book and not fall for John.
As a bonus, for fans of the Amelia Peabody series, the last book in the Vicky/John cycle links these two series in a hugely satisfying manner. Elizabeth Peters knew how to write clever, witty, stubborn men and John Tregarth is a great example.
Tomorrow . . .
I haven't the faintest idea. Tune back in to find out.