Started Early, Took My Dog, by Kate Atkinson
Written by
Barbara Morrison
October 2011
Written by
Barbara Morrison
October 2011

Jackson Brodie returns! Atkinson entered the list of my favorite authors with her first book, Behind the Scenes at the Museum, and each new book has only confirmed my opinion of her writing. This is her fourth book featuring now-retired private investigator Jackson Brodie. The first is currently being televised by Masterpiece, starring Jason Isaacs as Brodie.


To give some structure to what he calls his "semiretired" life, Brodie is criss-crossing Britain in search of his second wife, Tessa, who has absconded with most of the fortune he unexpectedly inherited. Or perhaps he is searching for a home. He is also making a point of visiting all of the Bettys Tea Rooms. "If Britain had been run by Bettys it would never have succumbed to economic Armageddon," he muses. I've been to the mothership in Harrogate, and I agree. He is also "bagging the ruined abbeys of Yorkshire on his journey" which brought back strong memories of my first visit to Fountains.


Too much? Tessa, fortune, Bettys, abbeys--keep up! This is how I feel reading a Kate Atkinson book: as though she is laughing and dancing ahead of me down the path turning now and then to say Keep up!


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