Albert's mystery series featuring China Bayles sets the stage for this celebration of the role of herbs in everyday life. Fans of China Bayles will revel in the way this diary fleshes out their heroine and offers in detail explicit connections between the novels' characters and the real leaves, flowers, and seeds that constitute Albert's well-imagined fictional botanic environment. Albert engagingly shows off her astounding knowledge of herbal lore that extends from the Middle Ages to the present. For example, she explains how beer used to be flavored with rosemary or anise until the introduction of hops in the seventeenth century. She gives instructions for creating a tussie-mussie, an herbal nosegay for fending off unpleasant odors. Further recipes for similar bouquets and for comestibles pepper the text as well. Each day's entry also includes one or more book titles for further exploration of the entry's subject. Mark KnoblauchCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
About the Author
Susan Wittig Albert grew up on a farm in Illinois and earned her Ph.D. at the University of California at Berkeley. A former professor of English and a university administrator and vice president, she is the author of the China Bayles Mysteries, the Darling Dahlias Mysteries, and the Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter. Some of her recent titles include Widow’s Tears, Cat’s Claw, The Darling Dahlias and the Confederate Rose, and The Tale of Castle Cottage. She and her husband, Bill, coauthor a series of Victorian-Edwardian mysteries under the name Robin Paige, which includes such titles as Death at Glamis Castle and Death at Whitechapel.