I really loved this witty, Agatha-Christie-style mystery set in Regency England. Rosalind is a wonderful, resourceful heroine, the setting*4.5 stars*
I really loved this witty, Agatha-Christie-style mystery set in Regency England. Rosalind is a wonderful, resourceful heroine, the setting is just beautifully done, and I kept sneaking moments to read this book when I should have been working on my own book or packing up my house for an upcoming move. It was just so much fun! I loved all the different women scheming and maneuvering within the bounds of civility, and I LOVED the way Rosalind's own arc ended in this novel - it was just perfect.
I'm giving this book 4.5 stars instead of 5 only because I had a couple of tiny personal nitpicks - I didn't quite buy her ex's reasoning in one climactic scene (and yes, that is totally subjective! you may be fine with it), and I also wished that the Bow Street runner's PoV had been brought back into the narrative a few more times to feel more balanced with the rest of the story - but honestly, that's all down to personal preference, not any kind of objective measurement!
And the most important thing to know is that if Book 2 were out now, I would buy it IMMEDIATELY!...more
LINESMAN is an incredibly warm, approachable and compassionate space opera. I picked it up after reading recommendations from Nalini Singh and Ilona ALINESMAN is an incredibly warm, approachable and compassionate space opera. I picked it up after reading recommendations from Nalini Singh and Ilona Andrews, and although there's no real hint of romance in this book, the writing style reminded me a lot of the super-approachable tone of Singh's paranormal romances and Andrews's romantic fantasy novels. It was also a fun tweak on the usual kind of gender dynamics, since the hero, Ean, displays a lot of traditionally "feminine" characteristics (burying his head in his hands in embarrassment when people praise him, etc), while working for a really ruthless, self-confident and fantastically strong space princess who doesn't show any of those traits herself.
There were a few individual moments that didn't quite work for me along the way - small moments when the voice of the secondary PoV character wavered slightly, sounding too much like Ean's voice for my taste - but really, those were very tiny nitpicks to make about a book that was a totally fun adventure. All in all, Linesman was an absolute pleasure to read, and I'm definitely going to be buying Book 2....more
The basic concept of this book (and series) - time-traveling historians operating from a British university in the near future - is so very nearly ideThe basic concept of this book (and series) - time-traveling historians operating from a British university in the near future - is so very nearly identical to the concept behind Connie Willis's time-traveling-historians-operating-from-a-near-future-Oxford-University that I avoided even trying it for a long time after it first came out and after I'd first started reading happy reviews of it from friends I trust.
But I finally did buy this book after all because it was a book club pick - and I'm really glad I did, because it was hugely entertaining. The base concept is, yes, almost identical to the Connie Willis series, and that honestly does bother me, but the voice is utterly different, the concept goes in very different directions, and the tone is unmistakably different as well. There's some fabulous madcap humor, along with great characters, but there's also some really intimate and disturbing darkness, and overall, it's definitely more R-rated than any Connie Willis novels.
I loved the heroine who narrates the novel. She's a mouthy, hard-drinking, intellectually brilliant, loyal and funny survivor of an abusive childhood who's now a passionate historian who NEVER lets desperate peril (or common sense) slow her down. I mostly enjoyed her romantic subplot, too - and I loooooooved that she got to spend time time-traveling with dinosaurs!
I had a couple of small issues with pacing along the way, but in general, I raced through this book and enjoyed nearly every moment - and I am definitely curious about the rest of the series!...more
I've never watched any of Shonda Rhimes's shows, but now I want to try them - because this memoir is just *wonderful.* It's funny, empowering, smart..I've never watched any of Shonda Rhimes's shows, but now I want to try them - because this memoir is just *wonderful.* It's funny, empowering, smart...by the time I was halfway through, I wanted to press it on all of my female friends. And since it's specifically about the attempts of an introverted woman writer with kids to force herself to get out there, socialize, do scary things in public and learn to stand up for herself and believe in herself - well, there are a LOT of my friends who would empathize with nearly every detail! I certainly did.
I listened to the audiobook edition, and I'm really glad I did. Rhimes narrated it herself, and made it into a fabulous performance....more
This is a totally adorable short story (or maybe novelette?) about a girl finding a kindred spirit (in the form of a sweet, geeky guy who might just bThis is a totally adorable short story (or maybe novelette?) about a girl finding a kindred spirit (in the form of a sweet, geeky guy who might just be her perfect boyfriend) through their shared love of Star Wars...and I probably found it even more resonant than I normally would have because I read it while I was on the train heading to the Doctor Who Experience with my own guy, and feeling very grateful at that moment to be married to someone who shared my own geeky obsessions! :)
I enjoyed every single moment of this story, and it definitely made me want to try more Rainbow Rowell books in the future....more
This is a slow-paced but lovely fantasy novel, set in an alternate version of the 19th-century American west, in which the Devil staked his own territThis is a slow-paced but lovely fantasy novel, set in an alternate version of the 19th-century American west, in which the Devil staked his own territory centuries earlier and the rest of the territorial borders have shifted around that. The heroine, Izzy, is a sixteen-year-old coming of age and coming into her own as the Devil's Left Hand, traveling the roads of her boss's territory with a mentor who has magical issues of his own.
I picked up Silver on the Road after reading Rachel Neumeier's review on her blog (which was very persuasive!), and by the time I was halfway through reading this book, I'd already pre-ordered Book Two. I loved the voice and the characters, the alternate-history setting is really interesting and well thought-out, and although it was a quiet book, it was a deeply absorbing and pleasurable read. Really looking forward to the next book in the series!...more
I have loved the original Sherlock Holmes stories ever since I was a kid (and I've re-read them many times since then)...and this is, by far, my favorI have loved the original Sherlock Holmes stories ever since I was a kid (and I've re-read them many times since then)...and this is, by far, my favorite Holmes/Watson remix I've ever come across. It is just so much fun! The voice is ferociously confident and compelling, and so is this Holmes - Charlotte Holmes, a descendant of Sherlock Holmes, with all of his prickly genius and attitude. She's been sent away from her dysfunctional family home in the UK to a boarding school, where she fascinates and compels the narrator, Jamie Watson (and no, it's not a coincidence that they've ended up there together).
Every bit of this story is written as a lovely, intelligent homage to the original stories - and it was clearly written by someone who knows those stories, and all the Holmes-lore, inside and out - but it also stands beautifully on its own. Charlotte and Jamie are fantastic, charismatic and real characters, not just copies of their originals. The mystery is fun, the adventure is fun, and the two of them together are just fabulous. The last line of this book was so perfect, I let out a happy good-book-sigh. If I'd had a hard copy, instead of a Kindle edition, I would have petted it afterwards! I loved it that much.
And I cannot wait for the next book in this series!...more