I suspect this series will get better as it goes along, which is why I'm continuing with it. Overall, the book was good, but most of it irked me. I waI suspect this series will get better as it goes along, which is why I'm continuing with it. Overall, the book was good, but most of it irked me. I wanted to deck most of the main characters. I do very much like Eloise. And as for the characters of the past I really love Miles and Henrietta; I hope to see more of them....more
Loved, loved, loved this book much more than the first installment The Secret History of the Pink Carnation. The Masque Of the Black Tulip was fullLoved, loved, loved this book much more than the first installment The Secret History of the Pink Carnation. The Masque Of the Black Tulip was full of characters that did not irk me. I already loved Henrietta and Miles from the first book, along with the modern day heroine Eloise, but I even loved the smaller characters like Geoff and even Turnip; he was hilarious.
Some of the romantic bits made me want to gag, but there wasn't really a whole lot of them. This book was full of mystery that had me guessing until the end. Brava! I expect the series to continue to get better as I go....more
Not as good as The Masque Of the Black Tulip, but still a delightful book. Nobody can beat Miles and Henrietta - and I was very sad of the absence oNot as good as The Masque Of the Black Tulip, but still a delightful book. Nobody can beat Miles and Henrietta - and I was very sad of the absence of them in this book - but Geoff and Letty, while a different sort of pair, were just as funny and cute together, although in a different way. Lord Vaughn continues to peek my interest. And excuse my French, but Miss Gwen kicks ass!!...more
I was very disappointed in this book, especially after the excellency of the last two volumes of the series. The Seduction Of the Crimson Rose moved aI was very disappointed in this book, especially after the excellency of the last two volumes of the series. The Seduction Of the Crimson Rose moved at a much slower pace. I was so used to the fast-paceness of the previous three volumes that I became quite bored quite fast. I simply wasn't interested in the characters of Mary or Vaughn and the story seemed to go downhill once they declared their 'love' for each other. I can't count how many times I thought, "Spare me!" Actually, I was quite interested in Vaughn before The Seduction Of the Crimson Rose. In the previous two volumes he was a mysterious sort of character. There was no mystery in this book.
The better parts of this book was the last third. The only purpose of The Seduction Of the Crimson Rose seemed to be the uncovering of the Black Tulip and that was incredibly disappointing, as well.
The story of Eloise, however, was very much the best part. I was disappointed with how her chapters are greatly spaced out between the historical chapters. There just isn't enough of her story, in my opinion.
Nevertheless, I do very much love this series and am looking forward to the next installment....more
**spoiler alert** There are many words to describe this book: Marvelous. Spectacular. Epic. To name just a few.
When I first started this book, I didn'**spoiler alert** There are many words to describe this book: Marvelous. Spectacular. Epic. To name just a few.
When I first started this book, I didn't think I'd end up loving it by the end. The pacing in the book was well done. It started up slow, but picked up by the end of part one and didn't let up.
The book had many flaws: Historical liberties, the unrealistic careers of both Fiona and Joe. There were also times when I was very frustrated. A few times I thought, "If Fiona and Joe miss each other by a second one more time...!" But none of these reasons warranted me to knock off a star.
My favorite character was Nick, by far. I instantly loved him. He was clever, witty, full of life and - in my head - adorable. When it was introduced he was ill I knew what would eventually come, and I wasn't ready for it. Nick's death made me cry. No. It made me sob. I had to put the book down and compose myself before I continued reading. This was the first time a book ever made me cry - and it made me cry twice! But Nick's death affected me very much.
Towards the end of the book I was getting impatient and was waiting for the wrap-up.I was happy that Fiona and Joe reunited and married. I was happy that the events surrounding Fiona's father's death were uprooted. And I was happy that Burton was offed. At least, I hope he was offed. He was the Ripper? I thought to myself that was possible at times, but really didn't see that coming.
And the surprise to find out Charlie was still alive. Well, that about did it for me.
Whether I had to put the book down to clap, curse, or cry, this book made me feel. And I can't remember the last time a book did that....more
Incase you haven't been following along, this is the first Carnation book I've given five stars to. I loved The Masque Of The Black Tulip and The DeIncase you haven't been following along, this is the first Carnation book I've given five stars to. I loved The Masque Of The Black Tulip and The Deception Of The Emerald Ring, but there was something that was holding me back from giving them a full five stars. Perhaps having a few "Oh, please! Spare me!" moments was why. The Temptation Of The Night Jasmine had none of those moments. There were quite a few "Aww" moments, though, which I quite loved.
And Robert? I'll take him to go. Please and thank you.
I found the relationship - and sometimes lack of one - between Charlotte and Robert quite endearing. And Robert is probably the most endearing of all the Carnation heroes. At least, in my eyes. His concern for Charlotte was always the top of his priority list, no matter if it pained him. Seriously, where can I get one of him?
I always love a interesting quarry of side characters, even the diabolical ones. And this installment was full of them.
And the present day romance of Eloise and Colin intrigued me more than usual this time. Sometimes I wish they had more chapters, but that would take away from the historical story and that just won't do.
And the cherry of the top of the sundae is that this installment had quite large roles for my two favorite Carnation characters: Henrietta and Miles. Miles, with his somewhat misplaced humor, never fails to make me giggle.
I gobbled this book up in three days. I frankly couldn't read it fast enough. I might even dare to call it my favorite. Lauren Willig will have a time thinking up heroes in the future Carnation installments to beat Robert. If that happens, my heart may explode....more
An enjoyable book, but far too long. This is a book that could have easily been 400 pages, or even less. Someone needs to tell Ms. Waters that it's quAn enjoyable book, but far too long. This is a book that could have easily been 400 pages, or even less. Someone needs to tell Ms. Waters that it's quality, not quantity, that makes a good novel.
The twists and turns were gripping enough, but I don't think it had the desired effect seeing as how the story went on and on afterward.
I enjoyed the mental hospital bits; it was interesting seeing inside one of those in the early 1860s.
Waters created a good villain in Richard Rivers. I seem to be intrigued by characters like him in stories. The main characters of Sue and Maud seemed not strong enough. I can't explain, but I just didn't feel as sorry for them as I should. The ending, however, was sweet.
This is a good novel for folks who love historical mystery fiction set in the Victorian era. However, I believe Affinity to still be Waters' best novel....more
Affinity doesn't seem to be as popular as Waters' other novels and I cannot see why. Perhaps it's the subtly of the story.
The subtI. Loved. This Book.
Affinity doesn't seem to be as popular as Waters' other novels and I cannot see why. Perhaps it's the subtly of the story.
The subtly is one of the reasons I loved it so much. I don't need things explained in detail about the supposed bond between people. This is how I write my own stories; you just feel it. You can feel the emotions of the characters and their feelings without them having physical contact with another person.
The supernatural aspect is the main reason I loved this. This made me excited to read Affinity and it did not disappoint. It's a brilliantly crafted story with spirituality woven into it.
So far this would have to be my favorite of Waters' novels. The ending will blow you away....more
A really good book for a debut. I didn't care much for the heroine, but the story was interesting nonetheless. Part 3 was my favorite part. Florence wA really good book for a debut. I didn't care much for the heroine, but the story was interesting nonetheless. Part 3 was my favorite part. Florence was by far my favorite character and I felt as though she brought out the real Nancy and I was happy with how the book ended. I can't wait to dig into Sarah Waters' other work....more
My first venture in Georgette Heyer's work and I am definitely hooked. The Grand Sophy was full of delightful and rememberable characters. The regencyMy first venture in Georgette Heyer's work and I am definitely hooked. The Grand Sophy was full of delightful and rememberable characters. The regency era was no doubt extensively researched, for the story was so rich you could feel like you actually stepped back in time.
Perfection. Can't wait to read more of her books....more
I loved this book! Probably my favorite Heyer novel so far. Venetia was a wonderful, bold heroine and her relationship with Damerel was just... exquisI loved this book! Probably my favorite Heyer novel so far. Venetia was a wonderful, bold heroine and her relationship with Damerel was just... exquisitely mismatched....more
This is by far the most cleverest plot that Georgette Heyer has created. Granted, I wouldn't call myself someone who has read a great part of her noveThis is by far the most cleverest plot that Georgette Heyer has created. Granted, I wouldn't call myself someone who has read a great part of her novels yet, but I'm getting there.
Arabella is headed to London to stay with her godmother who is going to introduce her into society. On the way there, her carriage breaks down and while waiting for help to arrive (where's a gas station when you need one?) she takes shelter in a nearby home that belongs to none other than the infamous Nonpareil Robert Beaumaris.
Beaumaris wasn't born yesterday. He has been bamboozled into meetings with marriage-seeking ladies who conveniently get into 'accidents' just to meet him for years. Mortified, Arabella - a daughter of a Vicar - concocts a clever story that she is a wealthy heiress. Figuring this is false, Beaumaris decided to play along due to boredom. But boredom eventually leads to something more.
A lie such as that can only bring about shenanigans from there. Once word gets out that a heiress is town, every fortune seeking bachelor is vying for her affections.
Arabella is witty story that brings with it a lot of laughs. A sweet, strong heroine and a devilishly clever hero and a strong plot makes this a definite Heyer must read....more
Now and then there are readings that make the hairs on our neck, the non-existent pelt, stand on end and tremble, when every word burns and shines harNow and then there are readings that make the hairs on our neck, the non-existent pelt, stand on end and tremble, when every word burns and shines hard and clear and infinite and exact, like stones of fire, like points of stars in the dark... -Possession, Pg. 512
How do I write a review worthy of such a breathtaking book? How do I write a review explaining the beauty of this book without giving anything away?
I will try.
For NaNoWriMo last November, I wrote a story about a man who moves into an old house. While renovating, he discovers old letters and journals from a time long ago. These documents provided leads into old, mysterious deaths and a disappearance of a family.
My point: I love stories like these. Huge secrets that leave small clues scattered into various places. Long-lost letters; famous poems. It's like a puzzle or maze. Turn the right corner and you will be rewarded beyond anything you could have comprehended.
Possession started out slow. The first hundred pages or so were basically a set-up for what was to come. Afterward, the story moved slow, but not in a boring way. It was like each beautiful secret was being slowly, graciously unveiled, as if hesitant to show us. We were met with poems and short stories, which some readers seem to skip, as if it hinders the flow of the story. These documents are the story. It gives us the thought that these two fictional poets were actually real. These writings give them life, breath, a voice. Why skip a part of a book? What's the rush?
If you're someone who easily gets impatient and just wants to 'get to the point', then do not waste your eyes here. If you can't sit and watch a beautiful story slowly unfold, Possession is not for you, and that is sad.
Example: For one chapter all there is is the correspondence between these two poets: Ash and LaMotte. It's over forty-five pages of letters. This was my favorite part. To see a relationship grow in words. The early letters starting out with civility moving slowly towards friendship and then slowly to love when we see sentiments like 'My dear' and 'Yours always'. It was gorgeous. It was exquisite. It makes me miss the beauty of letter writing. A great art form that has slowly died out.
My reaction when I was finished was me staring straight ahead, focusing on nothing, breathless and fighting back small tears. The last two chapters were hauntingly sad. I can't even form words to describe it.
The modern day story was good. It wasn't paper thin or unsatisfying, but of course, my mind was eager for the story of the past.
Read Possession if you're looking for a story that when you reach the end, you will be rewarded. You will feel that your journey was not in vain.
If I could, I would give this novel 10 stars. Five stars just does not seem like enough....more
A perfectly delightful regency romp in the styles of Austen and Heyer. With characters that jumped right off the page and some of the wittiness dialogA perfectly delightful regency romp in the styles of Austen and Heyer. With characters that jumped right off the page and some of the wittiness dialogue I've read in a long time.
I was very surprised to find out this was written by a man, but that was soon forgotten because you'd never be able to tell as soon as you got into the story that this wasn't written by a woman.
The characters were completely three dimensional. You can make out even the smallest of characters. The character of Stephen Milner has probably become one of my favorite characters in historical fiction. He was a bit eccentric and very droll and completely hilarious. Our heroine, Miss Fortune (that's right, you read that correctly) was a perfectly splendid character with a bit of the devil in her, but with also touches of affection and quick wit.
Fans of regency romances will be sure to love Indiscretion....more
I am honestly surprised how much I enjoyed this book. I usually stay off the spin-offs/continuations of classic books, but I think one of the things tI am honestly surprised how much I enjoyed this book. I usually stay off the spin-offs/continuations of classic books, but I think one of the things that made this book good was that it wasn't a spin-off/continuation of a major work. Lady Vernon and Her Daughter expands the story of Jane Austen's Lady Susan.
In Lady Susan we see her as a selfish, conniving widow. In Lady Vernon and Her Daughter we see that might not be the case. It goes to show how gossip and biasness plays into people's opinions of others.
The writing is incredibility crisp and the dialogue witty and refreshing. I just loved everything that came out of Sir James' mouth.