Thoughts 31-40

Leslie Saunders lsaunders@comappspec.com Sun Aug 31 18:43:48 EDT 1997

I enjoyed all your books immensely but most especially your new one "The Devil in Music." I knew Julian Kestrel was Orfeo within the 1st ten pages although I talked myself out of it by the 100th page. The only problem with the books is that either Kestrel shouldn't fall in love in the book or you should find a better method of brushing her off at the end. Please keep writing about Kestrel especially a little more about his and Dipper's history.

LSafranek Sat Sep 6 23:01:24 EDT 1997

Kate, I love all your books. Have read the first three; not sure -- is "The Devil in Music" out yet? Anyway, I met you very briefly at Bouchercon in St. Paul. Glad to see more books coming, although I must say they don't come quickly enough for me. I haunt the "R" section of my local Barnes and Noble, in fear that I'll miss one of your books. Am half in love with Julian Kestrel and love the quotes you included about what a kestrel is. Wonderful. Wish you'd bring Sally Stokes back for a bit. She way great. Dipper is a great sidekick. Looking forward to reading more of your books and thank you much for writing them. Your research does pay off and it is applied very sparingly and appropriately. Thanks again

dave niciarz o22222@webtv.net Tue Sep 9 23:18:22 EDT 1997

Well Miss Ross you have outdone yourself again.It is11:05 pm on Sept 9 and I have just finished reading The Devil In Music.WOW! What a great surprise ending.Unlike a prvious writer I had no who Orfeo was.Kestrel it apprears is a man with quite a past .

April Lee april@nwcomputing.com Wed Sep 10 00:22:33 EDT 1997

I had pre-ordered "The Devil In Music" from Amazon.com as soon as I saw it listed. The wait was long (I had time to read the entirety of Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin series--incredibly books which I highly recommend, by the way, and they happen to be set in the period of the Napoleonic War), but well worth it. I will not be a spoiler (BEWARE, those who have NOT read the book, as postings here will give away some important parts), so suffice it to say that while I did guess, it didn't matter. Julian is truly a wonderful character. The mystery of his past is only a part of the reason why I adore these books, however. I have long loved the Regency period (I've been a Heyer fan for ages), and I was an English Lit. major (Mt. Holyoke), and English Historian (Oxford), and just adore Sayers... and Tolkien. At any rate, your books capture the period and they style and the romance and the magic that makes reading the wonderful adventure that it can be. I especially admire the deft use of underworld cant used by Dipper and his marvellous sister. It gave the book an authenticity that isn't apparent in many books set in England written by American authors. Thank you so much for writing the books you have, and please, may there be many, many more!!! I will be checking with Amazon.com so that I may put my order in on the next one so as to have it as soon as I can get it!

cheryl lee clee@image-entertainment.com Tue Sep 16 20:32:51 EDT 1997


Love your books. I first learned about them from an eccentric mystery writer cum mystery bookstore owner in Key West (she had just moved to the Keys from CT to take care of an ailing mother). Anyway, I was on a big Austen kick (yes, like everyone else), triggered by the BBC's recent version of P&P, and I was in search of books on the Regency Period.

I purchased your first book, loaned it to my sister, and she proceeded to purchase the rest of your books. BTW, my sister recently sent you an e-mail. She said she was mortified that her message contained a number of typos. So I'm taking it upon myself to let you know that she really is in possession of an education. What she lacks is spell check.

I told my husband (who, to my surprise, took quite nicely to your books) that I was going to send you an e-mail. He thought it was a weird idea. I explained that I needed to absolve my sister of her spelling gaffs, and because I was touched that you went to Wellesley. He still found it weird, albeit less so, but then made it a point to tell me that I must ask you to reintroduce Sally. He's got a thing for Sally. Every now and then, when the topic of your books comes up (for instance, when my sister recently loaned us "The Devil In Music" -- beautiful cover art) he says something like "Is Sally in it?" or "When will Sally be back?" or "How come she isn't in all the books?"

Your website is fun and informative. I printed out your synopsis on the Regency Period and gave it to my assistant, who I have infected with the Regency bug (she's a bigger fan of P&P and, of course, Colin Firth's Darcy, than I am). She even added your books to her reading list.

I've gone on much too long. Hope you continue writing...at a more prolific clip, although I can't figure how you're managing to write and litigate at the same time. Very impressive.

Cheryl Lee Wellesley '80 (Pomeroy) NYU Law '84

PS: I too apologize for any typos.

cheryl lee clee@image-entertainment.com Tue Sep 16 20:47:21 EDT 1997

geeze. i didn't realize (until after i sent my long and rather silly email) that all messages are posted.

that's what i get for fooling around when i should be working.

btw, i just read the full text of my sister's message...she really needs to proof better doesn't she (sorry, April). ;-)


Lisa Firke dfirke@choate.edu Sat Sep 20 15:40:45 EDT 1997

Kate: I happened to see the review in the New York Times not too long ago. I think the reviewer kind of missed the point, (why can't the book develop the setting as richly as one of the characters? This is a *good* thing...) but it still must have been a thrill to see the work getting that level of attention.

By the way, I enjoyed "The Lullaby Cheat" (Kate's short story in the "Crime through Time" anthology). I've gone back to reread "Cut to the Quick" and I think I like it even more the second time around. A fan as ever, LF

Kenneth Grabach GrabacKA@muohio.edu Sun Sep 21 15:49:04 EDT 1997

I noticed, in reading The Devil in Music, a troubling item that appears to be an error of editing or writing. I am not in the habit of scoping out these in books, and I may be mistaken about some point in this instance.

In the scene at the Marchesa's villa when Orfeo makes his 'surprise' appearance, he does so with the tenor (Almaviva) part of a duet from Act I of Barber of Seville. Sebastiano has been singing the baritone (Figaro) part. After Orfeo's singing has concluded, Maestro Donati indicates he recognized the voice as Orfeo's by indicating that he always liked Mozart.

I am sure that a master as well versed as Donati would have known that Mozart's Figaro opera is not Barber but Marriage of Figaro, in which Almaviva is not a tenor, but a baritone as is Figaro. I do not recall that Mozart wrote a Barber. I know Rossini did, and his Barber was mentioned earlier in the book. In fact, Rossini's is the only opera based on Beaumarchais's plays that is mentioned.

This did not in the least mar a most gripping story. I just assumed that Donati meant Rossini, which Orfeo seemed to enjoy as much as Mozart and Beethoven. There was more meat in this than in the first three, and that made it all the more enjoyable of a read. I enjoyed in equal measure the view of the musical world, and of Austrian Italy of the period.

[Thanks to Kenneth Grabach, in his preceding post, for pointing out a source of possible confusion in THE DEVIL IN MUSIC. I wasn't wrong in what I wrote, but I was ambiguous. In the scene Mr. Grabach discussed, Orfeo begins singing the tenor part in a duet from Rossini's "The Barber of Seville". But then Sebastiano, who was singing the baritone part, leaves off, and the duet stops. When Orfeo resumes singing, he has switched to "Un'aura amorosa" from Mozart's "Cosi Fan Tutte". That's why Donati then says of Orfeo: "He always did like Mozart." My apologies for not being completely clear about this. -- Kate Ross]

Rich Homa richard.homa@worldnet.att.net Thu Sep 25 13:45:58 EDT 1997

We met at Centuries and Sleuths in Oak Park, Illinois...You and Augie (the proprietor) started talking about Gronow's memoirs, and you mentioned that he referred to some kind of science fiction work with balloons used for communication and transportation. He may have been reminiscing, so to speak, about Louis-Sebastien Mercier's L'an deux mille quatre cent quarante, published in 1771, and translated into English and published the next year as Memoirs of the Year Two Thousand Five Hundred. See Clute and Nicholls' The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, New York: St. Martin's Griffin, 1995 for further details.

Elizabeth Allen erallen@email.unc.edu Thu Oct 2 20:02:40 EDT 1997

Ms. Ross: I absolutely love your books. I have always been a mystery fan, as well as a Regency Period fan. You combine these two so well. I love your attention to detail, and especially Julian's character.IMO "The Devil in Music" was your best book so far, and the surprise at the end was quite a jaw-dropper. When I read it for the first time, I was sitting in class before it began, and when I said "OH MY GOD!!" out loud, everyone looked at me like I was insane. I have one question: What are you working on now, and when can we expect your new novel?

Thanks for putting up with my rambling, Lizzie