I'm a big fan of Willig's Pink Carnation series, and I'm finding her other books enjoyable, as well. Her writing flows very well, and her characters aI'm a big fan of Willig's Pink Carnation series, and I'm finding her other books enjoyable, as well. Her writing flows very well, and her characters are engaging and full of surprises.
The Other Daughter looks like another story about the Bright Young Things of the 1920s, all parties and frivolity and such. However, this book, while starting out as so, slowly peels back the layers of the facade, showing the ugliness underneath.
The drama and secrets made The Other Daughter gripping for me, because I wasn't interested in another story set in the 1920s about young people causing trouble with no consequences. I wanted to see what was underneath the shininess.
The Other Daughter is not a long book, and was a speedy read. There is a slight romance, but it's not really what the story is about, which is another thing I was pleased with. It was about a young woman finding herself, and that was good enough....more
Whenever I'm in a reading slump I can always count on a Susanna Kearsley novel. They're readable, engrossing, and just plain good.
A Desperate FortuneWhenever I'm in a reading slump I can always count on a Susanna Kearsley novel. They're readable, engrossing, and just plain good.
A Desperate Fortune was a bit different than her last few novels. There was no time travel, instead we just went back and forth between two women from two time periods. What connected them was a journal written in code.
The story takes place in France, with Sara in modern time, and Mary in the 18th century. Employed by an author who needs the information from Mary's journal, he employs Sara to go to France and decode it. In the journal and in France, Sara finds more than she bargains for.
The story was a bit slow going, but I didn't seem to mind. I liked the pace and I liked the characters of both Sara and Mary. There was also a lot of intrigue and romance and mysterious side characters.
Fans of Kearsley's other books should also enjoy this one....more
Another entertaining romp from Books & Braun, unfortunately I wasn't much into it as the previous books.
The intricate plots to this series are impAnother entertaining romp from Books & Braun, unfortunately I wasn't much into it as the previous books.
The intricate plots to this series are impressive, but I'm starting to think they're a bit too much for me. Also a bit much is the excessive descriptions and unnecessary dialog. I found myself skimming more than usual because of them.
There are also a lot of characters that I really just do not care a fig about. At this point, even the main characters of Books & Braun are starting to make me gnash my teeth. The only character I'm invested in is Sophia del Morte, and I really wouldn't mind having a entire book told from her point of view.
I'm starting to think that maybe steampunk just isn't my scene. I can deal with books that have light steampunk, but when the technology becomes too hard to follow, I find myself zoning out. And that's what happened here.
I gave this three starts because I really did like the story, even if I felt it was weighed down with unnecessary things. I probably will read the next book, or at least most of it....more
Another great novel from Deanna Raybourn! I just love her style, which is breezy and engaging.
Like her previous novel City Of Jasmine, Night of a ThouAnother great novel from Deanna Raybourn! I just love her style, which is breezy and engaging.
Like her previous novel City Of Jasmine, Night of a Thousand Stars takes us to the Middle East for another adventure. And we see characters from Raybourn's previous books pop up, and there's even a connection to her Lady Julia books!
The opening chapters grab you immediately: a runaway bride who is helped in her getaway by a curate. I am already wondering about this gutsy heroine, who is already making a pretty bold decision.
Finding herself seeking a purpose after ditching her fiance at the altar, with her newly obtained ladies maid, she goes out in search of said purpose. And in trying to find her curate to thank him, she finds more than her purpose, she find a life-altering adventure.
Like I implied at the beginning, the writing flows easily. If you liked Raybourn's other books, especially her recent ones, you'll like this just as much....more
First of all, I highly recommend reading the prequel to this novel: Whisper of Jasmine. It shows how Evie and Gabriel met, and gives good insight intoFirst of all, I highly recommend reading the prequel to this novel: Whisper of Jasmine. It shows how Evie and Gabriel met, and gives good insight into the beginning of their relationship.
That being said, City of Jasmine takes place in 1920 Syria, and seeing as how I didn't know a whole lot of what was going on in that area then, I learned a lot. Evie and Gabriel were thrown into lots of adventures and came across a lot of suspicious characters, some dangerous, some just shady. The descriptions and seeing the area through the eyes of Evie totally brought the country to life. The descriptions were not overdone, but were the right amount.
While I miss the Lady Julia books, I'm just happy to have another book by Deanna Raybourn. Her style and feisty, independent heroines are still strong in books like City of Jasmine.
I couldn't put this down! Deanna Raybourn fans will not be disappointed....more
The entire book is told from the point-of-view of Frances Osgood, a poet who has to support her two daughters after her husband skips out on them. SheThe entire book is told from the point-of-view of Frances Osgood, a poet who has to support her two daughters after her husband skips out on them. She soon comes into contact with the increasingly famous writer Edgar Allan Poe and his sickly young wife Virginia. She constantly gets thrust into their world, falling more in love with Poe with each meeting, but is also becoming more concerned that Virginia is plotting against her.
I was glad to see a book focused on a now forgotten female writer, even if most of the book is focused on her relationship with Poe rather than her writing. However, I understand that a love affair with Edgar Allan Poe makes for better reading. We do get to see some of her writing, though.
While I did enjoy Mrs. Poe, there were two things that constantly bugged me throughout the book:
First, whenever Frances went to break-off the affair with Poe, it went something like this: “We must stop this. Your wife! My children!” “But I need you!” “OK!” Frances had no spine, here. It was getting frustrating.
Second, Frances kept getting into these 'accidents' and it almost started to get comical. Even at the end of the book, when I found out the story behind all these incidents, I still thought it was a bit much.
Other than that, like I said, I enjoyed the book very much. It was a fast and engaging read. The spirit of 1840s New York was perfectly captured; the sights, sounds, people, everything....more
I just loved this book so much that I had to write something about it.
The book is told from the point-of-view of Francesca, the daughter of an EnglishI just loved this book so much that I had to write something about it.
The book is told from the point-of-view of Francesca, the daughter of an English father and an Italian mother. Francesca's mother died in childbirth, and she grew up in England not knowing her mother's family, for she was disowned when she ran away with Francesca's father and defied her own father.
When Francesca's father dies when she is 17, her mother's family suddenly pops up, when her grandfather sends her cousin Andrea to fetch her and have her brought to Italy.
The story takes place in 1860, in the midst of Italy's strive for Independence. Roaming the land is the mysterious Falcon, a man who is leading the rebels, and causing lots of problems for the military.
I won't reveal the identity of the Falcon, of course, but the author was very brilliant in making me undecided between two characters. One minute I would think it was one character, and then something would happen and I would think it was the other. However, at one point in the book I started to think about events that happened in the earlier parts of the book, and came to a conclusion and stuck with it. No matter what happened, I was convinced that THIS person was the Falcon, and I ended up being right.
When I was finished, I ended up going back and rereading parts with this character, looking to see if there where things that he said and did that should have tipped me off. Of course, now that I know who he is, things became obvious, but they were subtle the first time around.
I'm going to reveal some things that made me come to the conclusion of the Falcon. I will put these under a spoiler, of course.
(view spoiler)[ Obviously, the only two people who were viable candidates for the identity of the Falcon were Andrea and Stefano. I immediately thought it was Andrea at first, which is probably what a lot of people thought, but as I started getting further into the book, I wasn't so sure.
Andrea was hot-headed and rash, unlike the Falcon. And I thought it was the intention of the author to make us all think it was him, but I started to have my doubts.
I came to the conclusion that it was Stefano when Francesca was helping the Falcon to the tombs. She thought it was Andrea because she could kind of see him through the mask, and saw the birthmark on his chest, but then I remembered earlier in the book when Stefano rescued her from the tombs when her grandfather locked her in. She thought he was Andrea, and at the beginning of the book it was remarked how Andrea and Stefano looked similar. Of course, the author used Stefano's disability as a ruse, and that's how I saw it. It wasn't long before I figured he was faking it. And what a good ruse it was.
When Stefano popped up the day after Francesca left the Falcon in the tombs, injured from his wounds, I started to have my doubts, but when Andrea returned home, I changed my mind again. I KNEW it was Stefano, I just knew it, but it was driving me nuts because I couldn't figure out how the hell he was sitting there after everything had happened. (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more