I was going to read My Brother Michael by Mary Stewart but I couldn’t find it at the bookstore. So I went with one of her other books, The Moon-Spinners, instead. The only thing I had on this book was that it was made into a movie with Haley Milles a long time ago. Whenever I tried to find the book to read, I always confused it with The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, which my mother assures me is a wonderful read unto itself, however, when you’re expecting something completely different, is a little difficult to get into. So when I was in the bookstore last week, I had an aha moment, and realized that The Moon-Spinners was what I’ve been looking for all these years, and immediately bought it.
This is a standard Mary Stewart romance/mystery/thriller. There’s the independent young woman (Nicola Ferris), on holiday in Greece (Crete), who comes across the mysterious man (Mark Langley) who’s in a bit of trouble (shot through the arm) and needs her help, but isn’t sure he wants to put her in the path of danger. There are also the villains (I won’t give them away in case you decide to read the book), and the always interesting supporting characters. The local countryside must be included in the list of supporting cast because Stewart’s love of Crete shows through, and makes the mountains, gorges, villages, and ruins integral to her story.
Whereas her books may follow a fairly predictable storyline, the style in which they are written and the people that inhabit them are always enjoyable. First published in 1962, The Moon-Spinners didn’t feel stilted at all, although it’s colorful language was really tame. Now, I’m going to have to go find My Brother Michael. And then I’m booking my trip to Greece, hopefully to find me a mysterious man of my own.

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