My choice of book for this week’s Friday meme combo is Mrs. Queen Takes the Train by William Kuhn. I borrowed this on from the library last week and am enjoying it so far. The following description comes from the back cover:
After decades of service and years of watching her family’s troubles splashed across the tabloids, Britain’s Queen is beginning to feel her age. She needs some cheering up and decides to visit Britannia, the former royal yacht now anchored near Edinburgh and the site of many happy memories.
Hidden beneath a hoodie, Elizabeth walks out of Buckingham Palace and heads for a public train at King’s Cross. But a characterful cast of royal attendants has discovered her missing. In uneasy alliance a lady-in-waiting, a butler, an equerry, a girl from the stables, a dresser, and a clerk from the shop that serves Her Majesty’s cheese set out to find her and bring her back before her absence becomes a national scandal.
Comic and poignant, fast-paced and clever, Mrs Queen Takes the Train is a delightful debut that tweaks the pomp of the British monarchy, going beneath its rigid formality to reveal the human heart of the woman at its centre.
Now for this week’s excerpts:
Book Beginnings is hosted by Gilion at Rose City Reader, who invites anyone to join in, saying: ‘Please join me every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires. Please remember to include the title of the book and the author. Leave a link to your post. If you don’t have a blog, but want to participate, please leave a comment with your Book Beginning.’
The beginning of Mrs. Queen Takes the Train:
Several years ago, on a dark afternoon in December, Her Majesty Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom, Northern Ireland, and Her Other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth of Nations, Defender of the Faith, Duchess of Edinburgh, Countess of Merioneth, Baroness Greenwich, Duke of Lancaster, Lord of Mann, Duke of Normandy sat at her desk, frowning at a computer screen.
This is quite a mouthful for a beginning, but I like it. I never really pictured the Queen using a computer, but I imagine she has and probably often does.
*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56.
*Find any sentence, (or few, just don’t spoil it) that grabs you.
*Add your (url) post below in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url.
It’s that simple.
From page 56 of Mrs. Queen Takes the Train:
Instead of The Queen’s voice what he heard was a strange noise from the dogs. It was not unusual for his knock to make the dogs bark, but then he would hear her shushing them. Now they did not bark. They whined.
It seems like something is not quite right here. I’m looking forward to reading more of this over the weekend and may have the time to get the rest of it read. I know I’m going to enjoy it anyway.