As I’ve mentioned occasionally around here, my taste in books is not all swords, fireballs, robots, and spaceships. Sure, I love a good breakneck romp through a fantasy adventure as much as the next guy, but sometimes you’re in the mood to take a breath, sit down in a cozy chair, and drink some metaphorical tea.
Miss Percy… is all the tea, with a ‘biscuit’ to boot. I’ve rarely wanted to like a book as much as I wanted to like this one based solely on the title and summary. It delivered abundantly. Let’s talk about it.
Title: Miss Percy’s Pocket Guide to the Care and Feeding of British Dragons
Author: Quenby Olson
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Cozy Mystery
Published: World Tree Publishing (US), 2021
40-year-old Mildred Percy is living a shadow of a life, crammed into a dank, uncomfortable corner of her younger sister’s home, raising her nieces and nephew, and walking on eggshells. She has spent her adult life deferring her passions in favor of doing the expected thing. The safe thing. The comfortable thing.
On a night like any other, she receives an unexpected inheritance from a deceased great-uncle. Soon, she is the unwitting caretaker of a wyrmling dragon, with a tendency to eat all the bacon he can find, nap blissfully on shoulders, and, occasionally – only in the most dire of circumstances – bite where the sun doesn’t shine. The unseemly pretenders who would divest Miss Percy of her inheritance underestimate the charming cryptid at their peril… come to think of it, the same could be said of our heroine, Mildred herself.
As is the way of these things, life throws Miss Percy an adventure – a reason to leave her sleepy village – just when the handsome, gentle vicar makes her want to stay.
Why This Book Is For You:
Do you like quirky, cozy fairy tales like The 10th Kingdom (an underrated mini-series), The Princess Bride, and Stardust? Do you like Jane Austen? Both audiences will find something to love in this quiet, charming novel.
Ms. Olson is a master of voice. The narrator is not named, but this novel feels exactly as though it were a story told by an older, longtime friend of Miss Percy… in a parlor filled with tea and lace. It draws you in with its inviting, warm tone.
Do you like to laugh? I laughed out loud several times over the course of this book.
It’s not all sunshine and fluff, however. The beating heart of Miss Percy… is an examination of a woman’s struggle to break free of the role society has assigned to her – a role always subservient to other’s needs, never her own. The broken relationship between Mildred and her sister is absolutely heart-wrenching.
If you’re looking for a book with a relaxed pace, lots of heart, romance, and dragons, look no further than Miss Percy’s Pocket Guide….
Where Can You Find More?
At the time of this writing, as far as I can tell, this book is only available for the Kindle. You can read more about Quenby Olson’s backlist (looks like more traditional historical romance fare, if that’s your jam) if you enjoy the tone and feel of this book. You can find more about Miss Percy… in particular at Whispers and Wonder.
Happy reading, all you out there.