The art of the kimono

From Dreaming Spies:

There are many, many layers covering a Japanese woman, which goes far to explain the lack of heat in the houses. I doubt many women here managed without assistance, but I did not even try, merely stood with my arms out and let the maid push me around and bundle me like a doll.


When we first meet Mary Russell, back in The Beekeeper’s Apprentice, she is wearing one of her father’s old suits and a cloth cap. Clearly, that’s not going to do in Japan—or, not the whole time she’s in Japan—but she’s nothing if not a good sport, and she permits herself to be wrapped in garments that might have been specifically designed to keep a woman under tight (literally) control.


When Holmes walks in wearing the male equivalent of her formal garments, Russell does let slip a rather bitter comment. But she keeps it on anyway.

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7 days until Dreaming Spies! Other posts about writing and researching the book can be seen here, or you can read a long excerpt here

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  1. Merrily Taylor on February 10, 2015 at 6:14 am

    Holmes always seems to luck out in these situations (or perhaps it’s men in general?). I’ll never forget Russell’s “blessing” to him after he had the hot bath in Jerusalem…

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