Heat ended up being very enjoyable. I found the discussion about being a butcher pretty interesting. The Pirates! was jolly good fun.
I'm currently reading Jacqueline Winsppear's Messenger of Truth: A Maisie Dobbs Novel. These are a series of mysteries set in England after WWI. Ms. Dobbs is an unconventional sleuth, who was a nurse in the war and was trained in a doctor to notice little details, etc. Apparently the period details are very good; I'm not sure I can really judge. I read the first of these because my father-in-law got it for Christmas a few years back.
A few things do irritate me with the series -- it's not 100% clear whether she is supposed to have some sort of supernatural ability to detect things. I find the idea that by imitating people's stances she can deduce their feelings and/or thoughts unlikely. But it's still a pretty enjoyable read.
Despite all this, I don't normally read a lot of mysteries. This has been an odd run for me.
I thought I'd also comment on the covers. They started off with black and white pictures and scripty type:
Then they switched to a much more stylized illustration. (See the Birds of a Feather covers below:) I think I like the new type better -- they are more iconic and let you project your own view of the protagonist a bit more.