Comet Book Report: Dr. Johnson’s London, by Liza Picard

I’ve been doing research for this novel for a little while, so I’m going to try to play catch-up with the book reports. How much success I’ll have is anybody’s guess.

As usual, I started with Liza Picard, whom I adore. She continues to be a delightfully readable source of random factoids on the daily life of London. She isn’t a perfectly objective source — despite drawing heavily on Johnson and Boswell for information, she has no compunctions about saying she deplores Johnson’s manners and Boswell’s style — but she pays attention to the details of lived experience, and particularly of women’s experience (interior decorating is as interesting of a topic to her as crime). For a starting point, she can’t be beat.

I really don’t know what I would do without this woman. Her books land precisely in the time-periods I’m writing about, and she’s got one for each novel I’ve written or contracted for. It will be a sad, sad day if I go on to write a Blitz book and have no Picard to start the ball rolling.

Stay tuned for more reports on daily-life-type books, before I move onto more specific topics.

0 Responses to “Comet Book Report: Dr. Johnson’s London, by Liza Picard”

  1. tybalt_quin

    Oh I loved this book as well! It’s the fact that you get so much of the day-to-day minutae with her that other social historians wouldn’t necessarily think to include but she puts it together in such a fascinating way that you feel like you’re getting a sense of the period.

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