That Scandalous Summer – Book Review

14822924

Finished reading:

That Scandalous Summer by Meredith Duran

Expectation

I got this book in paperback as a gift. For a while now I was looking for a good historical romance book. It is a regency romance – the kind with English noblemen and ladies, dukes and heiresses. I read the back cover intro to the story and thought it was passable. I love historical romances and they do wonders for me as a stress relief.

“And truly happy people…they were willing to try to understand anything. But as a result of their own comfortable lives, they so rarely could understand.”

Summary

The main female character Lady Elizabeth Chudderley is a merry widow who behinds her smiles and composure hides some human fears and past mistakes. She also appears to have a bit of a drinking problem due to the fact that her parents have shown her what true love looks like. She has one dead former husband and freshly ex-lover who turned out to be a total jackass. She is loved by her tennants and subordinates despite her frivolous lifestyle. Since her mother was from a much lover standing than her father was she is charmingly devoid of snobbism.

“Never did a woman have cause to doubt her judgement than when confronted with the pathetic evidence of what she had once somehow found appealing.”

dr-sexy

Main hero of this story – Lord Michael de Grey is a second son of the duke. He has found that being a doctor and being very good at it, can make up for certain childhood dramas he suffered while his parents were the topic of every newspsaper gossip. After his brother threatens to destroy everything he holds dear he assumes a cover of a simple country doctor.

Nunnery_village

Conclusion

What I loved about this story are characters background and motivation. I like characters with flaws but determination. There were some intriguing supporting characters – and that is what makes a good story great for me!

“”Here’s the thing,” he said. “You’re a decent sort, which is more than I could say for myself before I met Lyd. And I suppose Lizzie might also have a taste for pastries one day. Would you know where to look for them?” This conversation was rapidly approaching the surreal. “I suppose I’d try the larder first,” Michael said. Sanburne nodded. “And if she only wanted the strawberry kind?” For God’s sake. “I suppose I’d take all of them, and let he pick out the ones she wanted.” Sanburne laughet. “I like that.” Stepping forward, he delivered a solid clap to Michael’s shoulder. “Remember this ambition. All the pastries. She wouldn’t settle for less, you know. Nor should she. And now…I believe I’ll pretend I didn’t see you here.” With a tip of an invisible hat, he walked onward. Michael stood in the darkness, listening to viscount’s footsteps fade. He felt oddly disoriented – as though he truly had been entranced, and only now had he come awake. All the pastries. He smiled a little. While Sandburne was slightly deranged, he was also right: Elizabeth deserved everything.”

Bookish things

84fb7443684276ca5b44882b111f0b9c

This spring something strange is happening to me! I am getting these crazy ideas about doing some bookish projects. The fact that I am sorely lacking time for any of it is totally irrelevant! I have started getting these crazy ideas while I was searching for some inspirations for my book club activities. Here are some of the ideas and inspirations that got to me this spring.

Literary signsdirectional-sign

I do have a garden to put a sign like this one in but I’m more intrigued by making some indoor decoration. It might include some really crazy and maybe even completely impractical coat hanger. Variations could include a weird wall sticker decoration or even a wall ornament of some kind.

Locations and pointers I will probably discuss with the boyfriend since we live together.

Anything goes for now!

Book clockbookclock1

 I am not fond of people who carve out books to make stuff out of them.  Some versions of a book clock I’ve seen made me sad for the books that got  destroyed in the process. What I’m interested in doing is a wall clock from  the pictures of book covers with numbers on them.

 I could probably use a wooden tiles or maybe something even lighter and  glue a picture of a cover with the the appropriate number on it.

 Choosing out a good and suitable cover will be a fun experience unto itself!

Book staircase 82e7f8383468ab30b88e68b9d49a735e

I love this idea! I’m not very handy with a brush and making it any less than perfect would just irk me every time I had to see it! I think it might be an easy solution to have some printed out stickers made for the stairs. I’m much more sure in my abilities to exterminate air bubbles under the sticker than to paint out the details and colors to my satisfaction! It could totally be a good way to freshen up the staris if the stickers could be changed few times a year. Maybe for the first batch to start with some of my favorite manga series for the whole stairs, or some kind of book series I really love!

Who knows maybe I even find a more permanent solution while I experiment with it!

Book11010299_687049081423862_3746224728111783008_n bricks

 I really love this idea to paint a brick and make it look like a book! These could be used as a  door stopper or a garden ornament. It is an  excellent way to have an outdoor bookshelf  without the books suffering from the elements of  nature! It might even make me spend more  time outside just to look at them. This idea just  might be the first I bring to life this summer. I  can play pretend and paint them into those  lovely Barnes and Noble leatherbound editions  I gaze at whenever I get the chance to!

Pale Demon – Book Review

 

PaleDemonHCcFinished reading:

Pale Demon (The Hollows book 9) by Kim Harrison

Expectation:

Last book in The Hollows series surprised me by how much I enjoyed it. I keep forgeting how much I love this series and I’m reminded with every book I read just how awesome it is. I read the Black Magic Sanction almost a year ago and it was a bit heartbreaking. As it turned out I keep to slow reading when it comes to these books. Part of the reason is that I missed the hype when the books were coming out – Pale Demon came out in 2011. The other part is savoring and enjoying my reading.

rachel_morgan_fan_art_by_valliantcreations-d1nd2fr

Summary

“The car was full of unhappy people heading west. It was the Great American Family Road Trip, all right. Whaaa-hoo!”
― Kim Harrison, Pale Demon

I have much respect for the characters in this book series. Rachel Morgan is one of the most amazing characters in the urban fantasy series genre. She is a shunned witch on a quest to get back her rights and prove herself. She sets on a road trip of sorts trough the post-apocalyptic America. The thing is I never really understood just how much the world she lives in was torned apart by a disaster. This jurney helped me to see the book series in a different light.

One of the things that intrigues me is how value of money is viewed in the books. It is important and not having it sucks. It is a neccesity of life and a means to an end. It ensures one’s existence.

So there she is our heroine driving her mother’s car (hers was blown to bits if I remember correctly) sharing on the adventure with four passengers. A pixy, a vampire, an elf and a witch they pick up along the way.

cover panorama

 

What I appreciate about this series is the character comunication. The way some of the characters react toward one another. Most of the scenes are brimming with tension and suspense. Rachel as a hero has many flaws and vulnerabilities and I love how author uses those in character growth. I love that she is a girl who can kick ass.

“Come on, Rachel!” Jenks shrilled. “You’re a badass, not a bad witch!”
― Kim Harrison, Pale Demon

algaliarept_by_terquila-d8kjj4l

I cant make my mind about Al! I have to admit I loved that character right from the first book. And I’m not entirely sure what happend with him in this book. I don’t do spoiler when I can avoid them, but in this book his behaviour goes trough a major change. Love Al!

Whats next?

PBhcCover

Next book is called A Perfect Blood and I’ll probably let it wait a bit more on the shelf. I could not resist to avoid spoilers on the final books and i’m curious about the budding romance with Trent – a major villian trough most of the books so far.

“Tink’s pink dildo, all that money and he can kiss, too,”
― Kim Harrison, Pale Demon

Kim_Harrison_Fan_Art__Trent_by_ValliantCreations

Fairly new books I want to read

buyingbooks

Lately I have been reluctant to add more books to my already big reading pile. In the throes of a middle life crisis I have become painfuly aware that I have little chance to read all the books I want to read. There are some books that came out last year or more recently, but keep tempting me to buy them, read them, house them, cuddle them,..

quote-when-i-get-a-little-money-i-buy-books-and-if-any-is-left-i-buy-food-and-clothes-desiderius-erasmus-58636As much as I have been saving money and trying to catch up with many of the book series I read already; there are some new authors and books that tempt me. I have this little fancy notebook in which I write down lists upon lists of books I want to buy!

kr

kr

Here are some new temptations:

The Goblin Emperor

The_Goblin_Emperor_cover

A new author with her first novel. The praises for world building and endearing characters are what got to me. The youngest, half-goblin son of the Emperor has lived his entire life in exile, distant from the Imperial Court and the deadly intrigue that suffuses it. But when his father and three sons in line for the throne are killed in an “accident,” he has no choice but to take his place as the only surviving rightful heir. The steampunk and fantasy combo intrigues me!

The Grace of Kings

18952341

Historical jurney into Han dynasty as a background setting and spicing it up with some fantastical elements sounds great! I liked background stories for Dynasty Warriors that were based on Romance of the Three Kingdoms of old China. This book won Hugo, Nebula and World Fantasy awards for 2014. I would like to know more about it before someone turns it into a franchise which is probably going to happen sooner or latter. This is the first book in the series.

Shattered Sea book series

Shattered panoramaThis is one of the rare newer books that has been translated into Croatian. It caught my atention because of the underdog main character. Yarvi succeeds to the throne of Gettland when his father and elder brother are killed. But Yarvi is a reluctant king. Because of a deformed hand, he has always felt an inadequate son to his father and now an inadequate king. He is engaged to his cousin, but his uncle is not interested in having a weakling for a son-in-law nor “half a king” for the country. There is quite a lot drama and adventure in these books.

 

Monthly Reading Review – March 2015

march

Monthly Reading Review – March 2015

In March I have read:

A Momentary Delay by Reha Camuroglu ★★
Delayed Penalty (Dartmouth Cobras book 5) by Bianca Sommerland ★★★
Pretty Guardian Sailormoon (Short Stories vol 2) by Naoko Takeuchi ★★
No Second Chance by Harlan Coben ★★★
The Spinster and the Earl (Gentlemen of Honor: Book 1) by Beverly Adam ★★★
Legends in Exile (Fables: Book 1) Bill Willingham (Author), Lan Medina (Illustrator), Steve Leialoha (Artist), Craig Hamilton (Artist) ★★★★

Kratkotrajna-odgoda_Reha-Camuroglu_2D.1

1. How many books you’ve read last month? Are you happy with the amount you read?
March was especially busy month for me, but I managed to read 6 books and start two that I will continue reading in April

2. What was the book that made a best reading for you last month? Any scenes or character that made a lasting impression?
The best read of March for me was Legends in Exile (Fables: Book 1) Bill Willingham (Author) et all. I gave it four stars as an interesting intro to a new graphic novel series. I loved the almost any scene with Bigby Wolf! This fairy tale retelling will be continued!

3. Were there any not so good books for you last month? What made it hard or not enjoyable to read?
Pretty Guardian Sailormoon (Short Stories vol 2) by Naoko Takeuchi was kinda dissapointing. Plotholes could not be atributed to strange Japanese culture quirks anymore. Sadly I still like the characters and the general idea but I hate to admit that I might have outgrown this manga series….

4. How did the books you were reading last month fit in your reading plans if you had any?
Lately my reading plans consist of trying to fit the books that are already on my TBR pile into reading groups and book club monthly challenges. So far I get to squeeze one or two per month. My “reading in the moment” is suffering a bit tho

5. Any updates on the series you are reading or are you starting any new series?
I’ve finished the last volume I had avaliable from a few series I’ve been reading. These include: Sailor Moon manga series and Dartmouth Cobras series. Also I read two books that were first in the series, one of which I will be continuing. Last but not least I finally got to start reading Pale Demon from The Hollows series by Kim Harrison – next book of the series is waiting on my shelf for a few months now.

6. Would you like to recommend any books or authors you’ve been reading this last month?
I have two recommendations from March:
First a graphic novel series Legends in Exile (Fables: Book 1) Bill Willingham (Author), Lan Medina (Illustrator), Steve Leialoha (Artist), Craig Hamilton (Artist) Interesting for all who like fairy tale retelling. You can find my review HERE
Second is The Hollows series by Kim Harrison
Excellent urban fantasy series with many interesting characters!

18ls3tevjt598jpg

Continuing reading for April:

Pale Demon (The Hollows book 9) by Kim Harrison
Gerard’s Beauty (Kingdom Series (Hall): Book 2) by Marie Hall

 

Legends in exile – Book Review

legends in exileFinished reading:

Legends in Exile (Fables: Book 1) by Bill Willingham (Author), Lan Medina (Illustrator), Steve Leialoha (Artist), Craig Hamilton (Artist)

Expectation:

I have been planing to read this graphic novel for a long time now. I have liked every Bill Willingham work I have ever read so far. I am a great fan of fairy tale retelling and this was something I was sizing it up for reading on more than one occasion. I have read Fairest the spin-off graphic novel series that came out after Fables were already worldwide accepted as a work of art. Fairest centered on female characters in fairytales and made them look really badass.

Fairest_Vol_1_33Summary

The story was an excellent introduction in to the Fable backstory. I liked how characters interacted and the idea that every character no matter how big or small once had its own kingdom, title and story. Snow White is the executive major of Fabletown – a place for Legends in exile. Her sister, Rose Red is missing and presumed dead. Snow White’s ex husband Prince Charming is back in town as well. The only one who can solve the mystery might be the Big Bad Wolf.

fables_1This graphic novel now counts 20+ volumes, some stand alone editions and even an encyclopedia edition!

51pNu0EQFyL

There were some laughs and some deep thoughts on the pages of this graphic novel.

“…you know what they say. The only easy day was yesterday.”

Bigby Wolf: Fabletown’s Sheriff in Legends in Exile (Fables: Book 1)

 

 

 

The Spinster and the Earl – Book review

18513531

Finished reading:
The Spinster and the Earl (Gentlemen of Honor: Book 1) by Beverly Adam

Expectation
I got it as a Kindle freebie while searching for some regency romance read to lighten up my reading. In the last year Lisa Kleypas and Eloisa James have become my favorite authors and I was looking for something simillar. I was lucky with Kindle freebies so far and I like trying out new authors for free. Some of the freebies I tried out this way turned into favorites!

^FEACE2E4834BEF1EE514A9AA20AD2C1D948A696147D9F47EAC^pimgpsh_fullsize_distr

Summary
This was a historical romance set in Ireland. The Spinster of the story is an interesting character. The story was filed with characters and themes one would expect in a historical romance novel – sometimes I had a feeling that the author wanted to use so many cliched references in her story that her characters suffered. I had some difficulty getting into the story and the characters were a bit fluttery (they were all over the place and predictable).Maybe the story would have worked better if the characters had been better presented. The Earl of the story had a background story that was only hinted at and that’s a real shame.

“As for Beatrice, by the holy rood, the lass needed a husband! Brushing aside the fact that both his daughter and the earl were of hot, unruly dispositions, the old lord spat into his hand and held it out to seal the match.
“My lord, ’tis a match made in heaven,”James said. a faint sardonic smile lit his rugged face as he heartily spat into his own palm and slapped his future father-in-law’s hand. They shook forcefully. The couple was now as good as promised to eachother.”
The Spinster and the Earl (Gentlemen of Honor: Book 1) by Beverly Adam

I am no expert for Irish brogue and English accents but something just felt a bit off in that department.

il_fullxfull-314262052

Conclusion
There were few “laugh out loud” moments trough the book an that is a big plus. I liked the story setting but think that the author could have done better by her characters.

“..a low rumble of manly mirth was heard warming the air.”

top-25-chris-hemsworth-hot-gifs-smile-thore