Colleen Mondor on Amelia Peabody.

Crocodile_on_the_SandbankAs promised, it's going to be All Elizabeth Peters, All the Time this week!

If you've been meaning to get in on the action, NOW IS THE TIME. As I've received so many lovely contributions (Did I mention that I'm totally still taking them?), I'll be running some of the longer ones over the course of the week, and linking everything up together at the end.

It's Amelia that caught my attention first and what got me was not only her independence (which I adored and totally appreciated for the time period) but also that she and Emerson fall in love and get married and have a child and she never changes her independent attitude. She is still the same Amelia he falls in love with and doesn't have to become anyone else's idea of who a woman should be. This was....huge for me.

I started reading the books in college and every girl I knew - ALL OF US - were continuously involved in long discussions about how to get what boy, what we should wear, how we should act and on and on. We changed who we were all the time, we constantly pretended to be who we weren't, we were obsessed with obtaining a mythical romantic relationship that usually involved the girl waiting by the phone all the damn time. And there I would be, reading about Amelia - brilliant as ever, waiting around for no one and still getting the damn guy while she made all sorts of brilliant scholarly discoveries and thwarted the villains. She inspired me, plain and simple, and for all the plot contrivances and anything else folks want to harp on, she still does. 

Colleen Mondor is the author of The Map of My Dead Pilots. She is the driving force behind Guys Lit Wire, blogs at Chasing Ray, and tweets at @chasingray.