Pieces of a Rainbow is a collection of character-driven and compelling short stories. The characters who people these stories feel real, and their joy...morePieces of a Rainbow is a collection of character-driven and compelling short stories. The characters who people these stories feel real, and their joys, sorrows, and challenges come to life in the reader's mind. Each story pulls the reader into its world, and each story is like a powerful lens on the day-to-day life struggles of its characters. There's a depth in each of these stories, which rings true to life, and the rainbow theme is wonderfully executed, with each short story titled a single color that's reflected in the theme of the story. Surprises abound in these stories, making the reader say, "Wow..." and giving a pleasurable read and ample food for thought, as well.(less)
This book is a treasure -- it rocks and rolls, on all possible levels. First, it's about a rock band, and no rock band could be more lovable than Shap...moreThis book is a treasure -- it rocks and rolls, on all possible levels. First, it's about a rock band, and no rock band could be more lovable than ShapeShifter. And Trevor Wolff, the bassist, is irresistible. In Trevor's Song, Susan Helene Gottfried weaves together poignancy, humor, and serious situations into a gem of a story that begs to be read not just once, but multiple times. Her characters come to life so strongly that they enter one's thoughts and dreams just like old friends. Don't miss this one -- highly recommended.(less)
Not only is this a rollicking read, but it’s a rock-and-roll read. Maelstrom is the name of the band featured in Ann’s novel, but they’re no ordinary...moreNot only is this a rollicking read, but it’s a rock-and-roll read. Maelstrom is the name of the band featured in Ann’s novel, but they’re no ordinary band. They’re not even human.
Maelstrom is comprised of Kalila (a genie, or more properly termed, a djinn), Vic (a vampire who loves all blood types except AB negative), Lazaro (a zombie who likes to hang around college campuses for the smart food, and I’m not talking about campus buffets), Bo (an incubus with one thing — lustin’ — on his mind), and Nevin (a sweet-tempered fairy who loves nature and tries to urge the band away from misbehavior and toward philanthropy).
And the band manager of this motley musical crew? Ricky Landon, who just happens to be a good-hearted but quite ordinary human. His biggest struggle with his otherworldly band members is that being immortals, they just don’t understand human conventions, and as a result, they tend toward wreaking havoc everywhere they go and everywhere they play. Oh, and did I mention, the roadies are werewolves? And that Ricky has a crush on the gorgeous Kalila, who thinks that physical relationships with humans are icky?
Complicating the situation is the bet which Maelstrom has with Ragnarökkr , a band made up of washed-up deities whose front man just happens to be Thor. The two bands are competing to see which will be the first to win fame by human means — in other words, no magic allowed. The losers — including poor Ricky — will be banished to Hades for five hundred years. No big deal when you’re immortal, but for Ricky, we’re talking about a life-and-death situation.
Maelstrom is chock-full of delights, from the mysterious yellow cat who attaches itself to Ricky, to Echo (the answering service Ricky uses to contact members of the band via his Blackberry), to Kalila and her eccentricities regarding her lamps, which serve, of course, as her homes.
Particularly entertaining is the interplay of the strong personalities of the band members, juxtaposed with their struggles to comprehend human ways, and Ricky’s earnest endeavor to understand the ways and means of immortals.
The plot cracks along, keeping the reader turning pages to find out just what the Hades is going to happen next, while throughout the mayhem and hilarity, we see developing a message of friendship and tolerance — no matter how starkly individuals may differ from one another, common ground can be discovered and nurtured if they work from a foundation of compassion and understanding.
And from Ricky’s adventures with the band, we also see that sometimes what looks at first like an infernal mess might just turn out to be one of life’s most meaningful lessons.(less)
A fabulous read! Erin Quinn has created a real page-turner with Haunting Beauty. I enjoyed not only the story and the characters but also the subtlety...moreA fabulous read! Erin Quinn has created a real page-turner with Haunting Beauty. I enjoyed not only the story and the characters but also the subtlety and richness of her world-building and magical elements. I highly recommend this one to fans of magical and paranormal novels.(less)
Amazing book, and beautifully written. Talk about a different perspective on Edward Rochester, and I found Antonia (Bertha) to be absolutely captivati...moreAmazing book, and beautifully written. Talk about a different perspective on Edward Rochester, and I found Antonia (Bertha) to be absolutely captivating and so, so heart-rendingly sad. I'll definitely be checking out more of Rhys's works.(less)
"Genteel" isn't a word one often hears today. But it describes this very special novel. In its pages, its story, and its compelling characters, there'...more"Genteel" isn't a word one often hears today. But it describes this very special novel. In its pages, its story, and its compelling characters, there's a quiet dignity which I find tremendously appealing.
I love Emily Dickinson's poetry, and I was fascinated by the idea of a fictional exploration of Emily Dickinson via the coming-of-age story of a friend, Miranda Chase.
I enjoyed the parallel drawn between the two friends: Miranda, who starts out life as a lonely child and who, as she grows up, increasingly pushes herself out into the world to work for the good of others, and Emily, daughter of a prominent Amherst family, who becomes more and more reclusive in order to hone a laser focus on her work: her poetry, which she hopes will win immortality. Miranda and Emily are dissimilar in their personalities, but each, at her core, is an unconventional woman for her time, and that is the glue that bonds them together in friendship.
The novel is beautifully written, its story lovingly told, and Rose MacMurray's children have given readers everywhere a gift by ensuring that Afternoons With Emily got into print. It's a delight, and I highly recommend it. But be sure and take your time with it. This is a novel which is meant to be savored page-by-page, not raced through at breakneck speed.(less)
What a treat! I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I hadn't read a regency romance in years, and I found this one to be romantic, refreshing, and lots of f...moreWhat a treat! I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I hadn't read a regency romance in years, and I found this one to be romantic, refreshing, and lots of fun.
McAlistair and Evie are appealing, engaging characters: strong-minded, independent people who march to the tune of their own drummers -- oh, how I enjoy such characters in a love story! And Alissa Johnson adds a healthy dash of humor, making their story irresistible. Highly recommended!(less)