It’s time again for Six Degrees of Separation, a monthly link-up hosted by Kate at Books Are My Favourite and Best. Each month a book is chosen as a starting point and linked to six other books to form a chain. A book doesn’t need to be connected to all the other books on the list, only to the one next to it in the chain.
The starting book this month is Beach Road by Emily Henry. I haven’t read this and it doesn’t look like a book I’d enjoy, described as a laugh-out-loud love story.
My First link is the word ‘beach’ in the title. It is The Body on the Beach by Simon Brett, a murder mystery I read in July 2010, the first in Simon Brett’s Fethering Mysteries. It’s an easy read, a ‘cozy mystery’ set in a fictitious village on the south coast of England where Carole Seddon has taken early retirement. She discovers a dead body on the beach but by the time the police arrive it had disappeared. She joins forces with her new neighbour, Jude, to solve the mystery.
My Second Link is also a book I read in July 2010 – Suite Française by Irène Némirovsky. Set in 1941-2 it is a novel of the personal lives of the ordinary people of France under the German occupation of their country. Irène was interned in France because she was of Jewish descent. Despite all their efforts her friends and family were unable to find out where she was sent and her fate in Auschwitz was not known until after the end of the war.
My Third Link is also by Némirovsky, Fire in the Blood. This is an intense story of life and death, love and burning passion. It’s about families and their relationships – husbands and wives, young women married to old men, lovers, mothers, daughters and stepdaughters.
My Fourth Link is set in Devon in 1944 about a different type of fire. It is Fire in the Thatch by E C R Lorac. When Little Thatch is destroyed in a blaze, the tenant Norman Vaughan is found in the burnt-out debris and Chief Inspector Macdonald of New Scotland Yard is asked to investigate the case.
My Fifth Link is another E C R Lorac murder mystery set during the Second World War, Murder by Matchlight. It’s set in London in 1945, in the darkness of the blackout as the bombs are still falling. A murder takes place in almost complete darkness in Regent’s Park and Chief Inspector Robert Macdonald is put in charge of the investigation.
My Sixth Link is another novel set during WW2, The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. It is one of the most moving books I’ve read. It tells of two French sisters and their experiences during the occupation of France in the Second World War.
My chain after starting with Beach Road, described as a ‘witty love story that will make you laugh a lot, cry a little and fall head over heels, became dominated by murder mysteries and books set mostly during the Second World War.
Next month (4, February 2023), we’ll start with Trust by Hernan Diaz. It was Longlisted for the Booker Prize,The Sunday Times Bestseller and the book that topped the most Best Books of 2022 pick – New York Times, TIME, Slate, Oprah Daily, Kirkus, LA Times, EW. And I haven’t read it.