I have bought a couple of things on line recently that haven’t quite materialised into what I thought they were going to be! The first was miniature roses which I will tell you about in another blog – I am beginning to think the term ‘miniature rose’ is an oxymoron!
The second was a book ‘The Trail of the Wild Rose’ by Anthony Eglin which has turned out to be a great mistake! I thought I was buying a reference book which delved into the history of the species roses and other old roses many of which have sadly become lost but really I bought ‘An English Garden Mystery’. I enjoyed reading it so much that I ordered and read his other garden mysteries.
The mysteries, of which there are six, are what they claim to be ‘garden mysteries’ but they include a wealth of detail about gardens and plants, particularly roses. The stories are, of course, fictional but the plant detail is correct. Anthony Eglin is more than just a keen gardener and admits to escaping into the garden when he has finished his writing for the day’. He spent many years in advertising before, in his words ‘defecting to indulge his passion for gardening’.
The books, in order of publication are: The Blue Rose, The Lost Gardens, The Water Lily Cross, The Trail of the Wild Rose, Garden of Secrets Past and The Alcatraz Rose. For me they make interesting reading, more mystery than crime; some violence but nothing too sinister. A genuine love of roses and plants in general by the central character, a retired botany professor illustrates Anthony Eglin’s interest in horticulture and allows me to indulge my passion for roses and rose gardens while enjoying a fictional read.
Retired professor, Lawrence Kingston, after a busy life of research and lecturing now only does consultancy work. After his wife died he moved from his large house and garden near Edinburgh to a flat in West London where he now keeps busy visiting museums and galleries, wining and dining with his small group of friends and of course keeping his hand in with the botanical world. After he was called upon to look into the mystery of the blue rose he gained a reputation for being an amateur sleuth which led to him being called upon to solve further botanical mysteries.
I wish I had read the books in the order they had been written because the character of Lawrence Kingston develops throughout the series. If I find an author I like to read I usually read their books in chronological order and if the writer is contemporary I am usually waiting for the next publication as I am now with Anthony Eglin’s mysteries.