I almost left it behind at the library..the cover didn't grab me, but the inside cover features an old movie still of Clark Gable and Loretta Young. TI almost left it behind at the library..the cover didn't grab me, but the inside cover features an old movie still of Clark Gable and Loretta Young. The books description sounded interesting and so it came home with me....and I am glad that it did. I have not read this author before and am still a bit puzzled by some of the 3 star ratings whose readers said that it was not up to par with Ms. Tri's aria other books. You can bet I will have a read.
This book is about Loretta Young. It features the alleged romance between Loretta and Clark Gable (began during the filming of "Call of the Wild") and the child that was, as rumors go, born of that romance. The book is about Loretta's attempts to keep the birth secret.
Life in Hollywood during the "Golden Years" was much different than it is today. Actors were not as well paid then, fans were not as rabid, paparazzi were yet to become such a burden to a stars privacy, movies were in black and white and cost 25 cents. There was a morals standard in place at the time and having an out of wedlock baby would potentially have cost them both their livelihoods.
The book also features the story of the friendship between Loretta and her secretary, Alda. Alda, a recent Italian immigrant, had been a novitiate in a San Francisco convent where she worked with unwed mothers, but she was released from the convent by her Mother Superior before she took final vows because she was thought to be too soft hearted and she might not be able to follow instructions to the letter. However, Mother Superior and a Los Angeles priest have arranged for Alda to get a position in the Young household. Loretta was a devout Catholic. This unlikely pairing results in a staunch friendship that lasts for the rest of Loretta's life.
I could go on but if this peaks your interest even a bit then you should read the book yourself! I found the characters to be well developed, the plot very well written and I thoroughly enjoyed my time spent in the world of old Hollywood. Now to find another book from this author........more
Another wonderful, true-to-life feel, book from Bernard Cornwell....set in 877 AD this is the story of Uthred, the Saxon warrior and his defense of thAnother wonderful, true-to-life feel, book from Bernard Cornwell....set in 877 AD this is the story of Uthred, the Saxon warrior and his defense of the Christian King Alfred. Action, adventure, Danes and Saxon...an excellent read....now I am off to read the rest of the series......more
Disclosure first. The editor suggested that I might enjoy reading this book and sent me a copy. This person seems to be able to intuit what I will likDisclosure first. The editor suggested that I might enjoy reading this book and sent me a copy. This person seems to be able to intuit what I will like though and so I was quite pleased to have the chance to read this book.She thought that since I had gone 'gaga' over "Hild" this book would be of interest...ad it was! The 5 stars are all my own decision though - this is a great read!
When I turned the last page I began trying to think about how I would describe this book. It is light and dark, sweet and bitter, tangled and clear. There is one scene towards the end that reminds me of a verbal rendering of the Hieronymus Bosch's painting " The Fall Of The Damned Into Hell" . This book grabbed my attentopn from the first page - and that does not happen all that often.
Synopted: This book tells the story of 'Mouse'. She is a 13th century Bohemian girl with who has no history, no family, not even a name. Mouse feels that she does not belong anywhere - she feels unloved and unwanted. Her parents are unnamed and all she has to tell her story is a bracelet that was her mothers that is marked with a sparrow sigil. Her adoptive 'parents' are Mother Kizi and Father Lucas who brought her to their abbey as an infant so that she can be brought up in safety. She is not,however, allowed to share in mass or to become a member of the church, but she is well trained as a healer. She has unusual abilities; highly sensitive to her environment and able to hear and see things that others cannot as well as possessing the gift of eidetic memory and the ability to heal herself quickly from any wounds or illness.
The young king of Bohemia, Ottaker, is grievously wounded and , in the absense of the regular physicians at the abbey, Mouse tends to him- healing a 'through and through ' arrow wound. Of course, he wants her to remain with him when he ready to leave. Mouse hesitates but accompanies him to follow her greater destiny. Of course, romantic feelings begin to grow between the pair and, for a time, Mouse envisions a perfect life of belonging and family as the young kings wife, but she and Father Lucas have greater dragons to slay - erhhh I mean evil to conquer... and they travel to a dark place to bind the evil forces . Meanwhile, back at the castle, the young kings nasty father returns from his travels and quickly imprisons his son and his men. Mouse intuits his need and returns to engineer a plan to save Ottaker . The elder, evil, king is found to be insane and Mouses' plan includes holding the elder king in his rooms as Ottaker assumes the reigns of power and heals his countries wounds. Part of that plan requires him to make peace with Austria and marry the princess Margaret - dashing Mouses' happy dreams of belongoing and family. The youn king marries her to his trusted friend, but not before Mouse seduces him for one night of passion before her marriage to Lord Rozemberk. Of course this results in a pregnancy which leads her husband to become unbelieveable cruel.
The twisty plot continues until the last pages and a very dramatic , unexpected, end. This book is very well done; complex ,well written , characters, a plot that twists and turns. Historically based facts that refect the darkness of the 13th century and a bit of the history of Bohemia. For a very quick look to check some yhe historical facts Wikipedia has a decent, albeit short entry about Bohemia at https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bohemia.
I coulld easily read this as an allegorial book; good and bad, right and wrong, saints and sinners, dark and light, that addresses feelings that most of us experience at one point or another in lives - belonging (or not), frustrated love, being captured by darkness (depression), and the choices that we make to choose good over evil. It is a bit of cautionary tale. Perhaps that is too deep an interpretation - but it did cross my mind - and I tend to read fiction for pleasure and don't generally over anaylze what I read.v... so perhaps you might find these elements as you read as well....
I am not sure that I would class this as YA read... but of course that would depend on both the youth as well as the parents sensibilities. It has a very dark edge and there is quite a bit of cruelty, but, at least, no overt sexual content.
I will be eager to read the next book from this talented author. For a debut novel - this really does get 5 stars!...more
I am most likely the last person on the planet to read this memorable book. When it came out, for some reason, I was steadfastly not interested. PerhaI am most likely the last person on the planet to read this memorable book. When it came out, for some reason, I was steadfastly not interested. Perhaps it was becuase I was ignorant about the importance of the history of the Belgian Congo and did not think that I would be interested. I may also have been a put off but the style---the story is told through different 'voices'.
At any rate, I should have read it sooner because it is a brilliant, moving read that opened my eyes and me thrirst for to read more non-fiction about the times. Books that do that are my favorites. They affect me far beyond the point when I close the cover on the last pages of the book.
This book has been reviewed so much that I bet most everypne knows the plot by now. A missionary family arrives in the Congo to spread the good word. Tey are thoroughly unprepared for the realities of life in the Congo- knowing nothing about the language, the customs, the people, climate, food .... the father arri8ves thumping hos Boble ready to baptize children in a river that the inhabitants believe eats their children. The pastors's wife is a submissive woman and their four daughters tend to follow suit in an attempt to keep the peace. Each has a decidedly different voice and point of view.
I will admit that at first I was a bit put off by the daughters ;voices' as the vehicle for the story. It took e abit to get into the flow and to appreciate their individuality. It felt a bit dis-jointed to me for a bit (as I imagione such an experience would be in reality). Ultimately I did be3come engrossed in their tales of life in this remote village. This is raw book in the telling. It is the story of upheaval, the death of the colonial way of life that could, at times and for some people, be a bit decadent. It is the story of a country that is in the process of "becoming" with all of the blood and gore and triumph that oftens goes along with that.
Many more intellectual readers have reviewed the book and done it better...but I found this to be a very moving read that opened my eyes and has held my inteest far beyond the last page....more
In some series, the sequels lose strength. Anna Belfrage and the Graham series does the opposite....it gets better and better! I had not planned to reIn some series, the sequels lose strength. Anna Belfrage and the Graham series does the opposite....it gets better and better! I had not planned to read the entire series, but now I am hooked and have to keep going! The characters are becoming even more well portrayed, the historical basis becomes more and more riveting...excellent !...more