Eva Ibbotson has recently popped up on my radar. She is a writer of children's books and charming easy-to-read novels for adults. I've been duly charmed with Madensky Square, a story about a dressmaker in Vienna in 1911 who chats with the reader about her shop, her assistant, the neighbors, and the threat of an urban renewal scheme which would destroy the little world of Madensky Square.
This is not great literature. But the book is well-written, does not condescend, and pleased me greatly.