I sort of finished Seven for a Secret by, Lyndsay Faye narrated Steven Boyer, I say sort of because I dnf'd it with about an hour left I just didn't c...moreI sort of finished Seven for a Secret by, Lyndsay Faye narrated Steven Boyer, I say sort of because I dnf'd it with about an hour left I just didn't care to listen anymore and I am not sure if the story got boring or if the narrator sounded bored so I was too. I wanted to like this book so much, since I loved Faye's Dust and Shadow: An Account of the Ripper Killings by Dr. John H. Watson but it just didn't do it for me.
This book reminded me of the TV show Copper which I love but this story got a bit long winded for me and by the end I just wanted it over. The middle of the story was interesting and she does give a great feel of New York in this time period, but I just wanted her to get on with the story and have it come to a conclusion. The copper star in this book Tim Wilde at times doesn’t seem too bright, and I felt that even for an abolitionist he seemed pretty forward thinking, again in that way it reminded me of the show Copper, and possibly that is why I didn’t enjoy this as much as I thought I would because of the comparisons.
Steven Boyer’s narration was really good at times, let me clarify the main character had this kind of boring one note dialect he sounded bored or depressed but his other characters and accents were very well done including a southern woman that I thought was very good, I think that may be why the main characters voice was so strikingly boring compared to all the other great voices he did.
I will read more Lyndsay Faye books as I said I absolutely loved Dust & Shadow and if she writes more Holmes books I will be thrilled, however I probably won’t read anymore in this series or if I do I will read them in paperform.
I received the paperbook from Librarything Early Reviewers but got behind and bought it on audio. (less)
This was a fascinating little book, a quick read that really packs a punch. I read this for bookclub and one of the things that struck us was the coll...moreThis was a fascinating little book, a quick read that really packs a punch. I read this for bookclub and one of the things that struck us was the collective “we” of this book, the fact that it wasn’t about one person making this journey to a new country it was about a whole generation. How some were happy with their new husband some weren’t, some were treated badly some not. It was just a very fascinating look at a whole generation of women.
The narration by, Samantha Quan & Carrington MacDuffie was very well done. This is a quick yet powerful read that I highly recommend for bookclubs.
This was a fascinating read, I asked for this from netgalley because I am fascinated with the Triangle Fire tragedy but this book is about so much tha...moreThis was a fascinating read, I asked for this from netgalley because I am fascinated with the Triangle Fire tragedy but this book is about so much than just that, it is a fabulous immigrant story.
We meet teenaged Miriam and her family when they are living in Kiev, they have already lived through the pogroms (which is a violent massacre or persecution of an ethnic or religious group, particularly one aimed at Jews) and there is hints at more to come, but her parents have a dream, to go to the golden land to America where no one burns you for being a Jew. They start their journey by getting out of Kiev and moving to Germany to make enough money for Papa to go to America first and make enough money for the rest of the family to come over. It is 2 years before enough money is saved and the tickets arrive for Miriam, her mother Sara, her brother Yuri, and baby sister Devora to make the great sea voyage. However Miriam’s brother is a little brat who doesn’t want to leave, sorry Yuri really made me mad in this story and Devora has been sickly and the doctor advises that she not go on this trip. Ok that is all I am going to tell about that part *No Spoilers*.
The book goes on with Miriam’s story her sea voyage , what that was like and the conditions for these passengers was pretty grim, but I liked how the author let us see through Miriam’s eyes that first look at New York harbor the Statue of Liberty and arriving at Ellis Island. I thought her descriptions of this and the Lower East Side made you feel like you were there and was well written. So there is so much more to this book than the Triangle Fire which I’m sure you have guessed is where Miriam gets a job and after still having nightmares from the Pogrom’s of her childhood this was a pretty tough time. One caveat here, the description of the fire is very graphic so teens or adults with a weak stomach may have a hard time with that.
I really enjoyed this book and pretty much read it in one sitting, this was my first book by Irene Watts though I have been meaning to try her books, I will now be reading more of her books. I really enjoyed her writing and the descriptions of time and place were well done.
I would recommend this to teens and adults alike and will be buying the paperbook for our library!
4 Stars As I said I received this book from netgalley for a fair and honest review. (less)
This book was sad yet uplifting at the same time. These characters are flawed but flawed by things done to them by others and how they dealt with the...moreThis book was sad yet uplifting at the same time. These characters are flawed but flawed by things done to them by others and how they dealt with the hurts that were done to them. My favorite character was Lulu she was an amazingly strong woman who conquered whatever life threw at her and was strong for everyone around her, she was the kind of friend I think anyone would be lucky to have. Hux was my second favorite he had a quiet reserve and so much empathy for people.
Of course it is hard to agree with some of the choices made by these people especially Evaline but if she had made different choices then it would have been a very different book. The treatment Naamah received in the orphanage is tough to read but it is one of those instances where it made her who she was flaws and all and her choices when she left the orphanage were caused by the treatment she got there.
Parts of this book will break your heart and parts will make you smile, this is one of those books that is hard to review because I don’t want to give anything away because I want you to experience it for yourself. This one will give you such a book hangover I can’t get these characters out of my head. I finished this book 3 days ago and am still thinking about these characters and miss them and it makes me tempted to go back and start again at the beginning just to be close to them again.
My only qualm would be I wish I knew Naamah's journey after Racina ended up in the hospital and how she ended up where she did. And there were times I wish she hadn’t jumped quite so far in time but I think that was more about me missing the characters.
I don’t want to say too much more as I don’t want to spoil the experience for anyone so I will just say this book is a must read!
I received this book from Edelweiss for a fair and honest review.(less)
Historical Fiction, about a physician, Robert Merivel, in the 17th century who falls out of favor with the King and tries to rebuild his life, all the...moreHistorical Fiction, about a physician, Robert Merivel, in the 17th century who falls out of favor with the King and tries to rebuild his life, all the while pining to be close with the King again. It is very well written, sometimes humorous, and sometimes a bit sad. The medical facts are interesting and seem to be spot on with the time period. Merivel can be very self centered and doesn’t seem to care about anyone or anything except for the one person he can’t have. There were times Robert was such a cad that you wanted to smack him but he is a character in every sense of the word. However, he is an interesting character and I will continue on to the next book in the series, just to see if he ever learns from his mistakes. There is some gratuitous sex and it isn’t action packed in the least, more a day in the life, which does slog down a bit after the middle of the book, but well written historical fiction that I would recommend.
The narration by, Paul Daneman is at times absolutely brilliant and at other times cartoonish, and some people will be annoyed by some loud mouth clicks, they aren’t constant but are noticeable when they appear. I got over the mouth clicks , but some characters sounded like a parrot talking and his women could really use some work but there was just something great about the majority of his narration that I would listen to this narrator again because of the parts of the narration that are brilliant.
This was my first book by Tremain, and I would definitely read more from her, and I would try this narrator again too.
This book is gothic fiction at its best! This was the first book I’ve read by Harwood and I will be reading his others. This book grabbed me from the...moreThis book is gothic fiction at its best! This was the first book I’ve read by Harwood and I will be reading his others. This book grabbed me from the start and kept me on the edge of my seat all the way through. Poor Georgina wakes up in an asylum with no recollection on how she got there, she is also registered in a name that is not hers. Between the memory loss and her giving a false name the doctor thinks she should stay and get her memory back when things go from bad to worse when the doctor checks around about who she says she is and finds that Georgina is home in London. Is there a vast conspiracy or is Georgina crazy and just making up that she is really Georgina.
I loved how this book plays out , there were even times I wondered about Georgina’s sanity. There is also a story about Georgina’s mother that all eventually ties into what is happening in the present. Oh this is hard I don’t want to spoil this story for anyone because the suspense is done so beautifully the story unfolds gracefully as you try to figure out if Georgina is telling the truth or if she really does belong in the asylum.
The narrator Rosalyn Landor does as always a fantastic job, I love that she does these male voices where it’s almost like someone else is narrating them. If a book has Rosalyn narrating I will always pick the audio over paper.
If you are a fan of gothic stories run, don’t walk to get this book because this is gothic fiction at its best! Just make sure you have time allotted because you will not want to put it down once you have started!
4 ½ stars
I received this book from the Audiobookjukebox and the publisher Blackstone Audio for a fair and honest review. (less)
As with Ford’s last book this is a bittersweet story that will give you such major feels. William is such a sweet kid, you can't help but love him and...moreAs with Ford’s last book this is a bittersweet story that will give you such major feels. William is such a sweet kid, you can't help but love him and I just wanted to give him a hug. There are 2 characters that will stay with you long after you are finished and they are William and Charlotte, these two kids are so precious and so damaged by circumstance they will break your heart but they will also fill your heart with such feelings.
Willow/Liu Song is a memorable character too but although I did feel sorry for her, I didn’t have the same feelings for her as I did for William. Her story is a sad one but some of that sadness comes from the choices she makes, Yes, I know bad things happened to her and I know she had no choice in those matters but I think her later choices are the ones she felt the most guilt for and in some ways rightfully so. Yes, I know it is a different time and prejudices being what they were made things all the harder for her as a single/unwed Chinese mother in the 1920’s so I understand she did the best she could being so young and having no family to depend on. Ok, I am not going to say anymore you will need to make your own decision about how you feel about Willow.
I liked the alternating chapters as Willow tells William the story of his life before the orphanage and seeing it through his eyes as the story unfolds, as sparks of memory he had forgotten are reignited.
How come it is so hard for me to write a coherent review of a book I loved? This book made me feel so much, it is beautifully written; Jamie Ford has a great talent for taking a sad/bittersweet story and telling it in a way that you are not depressed when you are done with the book. There were a few times I had to put it down for a few moments, one moment especially and when you read the book you will know exactly which one I am talking about. But it just made the story more beautiful, and heartbreaking.
This is an amazing story, I for one absolutely loved it and I hope you will too. Beautifully, heartrending and heartbreaking but a story that will stay with you long after you are finished, I have such a book hangover from this book that I have not been able to start a new book yet, and for me that is a sure sign of a great book.
I received this book from the Librarything Early reviewer program (also was accepted for it from netgalley but never got it downloaded) (less)
A Bitter Veil by Libby Fischer Hellmann Narrated by, Diane Piron Gelman
A Fascinating look at a time of turmoil in Iran with the fall of the Shah &...moreA Bitter Veil by Libby Fischer Hellmann Narrated by, Diane Piron Gelman
A Fascinating look at a time of turmoil in Iran with the fall of the Shah & the rise of the Ayatollah. This book felt very well researched and wasn’t a slam on an entire country or religion. We meet a young couple in love in America, Nouri and Anna they are young and in love Nouri is Iranian but this makes no difference to Anna in fact she is looking forward to the day they make their home in Iran. However Iran is in the beginning stages of upheaval and when the Shah falls everything in Nouri & Anna’s life changes too and definitely not for the better.
I found this story fascinating in how fast people’s allegiances and loyalty and personalities changed with the revolution and how many different reasons for the changes. Anne married a sweet man in Nouri who was involved in human rights activism while he was studying in the US and even after they had gotten to Iran he seemed to still hold the same beliefs until after the fall of the Shah and Nouri is arrested he comes back a very different man and Anna’s whole life changes.
I don’t want to give too much away about what happens between Nouri and Anna but let’s say he becomes a different man than she married. The unrest in Iran is fascinating the way the people flip-flopped on what It was they wanted from their country it makes me wonder how different the middle east and Iran in particular would be now if the ones that wanted to embrace the modern and give the rights to everyone had won this particular battle.
The narration by Diane Piron Gelman was very well done her accents weren’t over done and as far as I could tell she did a good job at speaking Farsi and French when called for. I was impressed with her narration as a whole and would listen to her again.
In the author’s afterword she talks about interviewing many Iranian Americans for this story and I felt like this rang true to what I know of this time period. One thing the author said in the afterword is she is a crime writer and needed a crime but I kind of felt like the crimes were on the people of Iran although the crime did add the ending and fit well in the story.
If you are at all interesting in this time period or setting or just a fan of historical fiction I would highly recommend this book.
I received this book from the author & the Audiobookjukebox for a fair and honest review (less)
What a fabulous read! The author mixed the historical and present day story so seamlessly I was completely hooked.
The story of the orphan train is so...moreWhat a fabulous read! The author mixed the historical and present day story so seamlessly I was completely hooked.
The story of the orphan train is so sad, these children were herded up like cattle and sent away from everything they knew, sent to a strange land with people who may or may not take care of them. For some it was indentured servitude, others were free labor that came with beatings. Some, the lucky ones found homes with people who truly cared about their well-being, and then ones like Niamh/Dorothy/Vivian had to go through a few bad ones to find the good one. These children lost their heritage, their names, and their religion. I felt the author’s research was very thorough and this book like historical fiction should be makes me want to read more and more about the orphan trains.
In the present day we meet Molly a Penobscot Indian in foster care after her father dies and her mother is in no shape to take care of her, she bounces from one bad home to another. When she gets in trouble her boyfriend sets it up for her to do her community service with his mother’s boss Vivian a 91 year old woman who needs help cleaning out her attic. As the two go through the boxes of Vivian’s life they realize they have much more in common than anyone would have ever guessed.
I loved the relationship between Vivian & Molly how both are wary because of what they have been through and to see this relationship grow through the stories Vivian tells as they unearth her life that has been tucked away in boxes.
I truly enjoyed this story and I think Molly and Vivian will stay with me for a while. This was my first book by this author but she has piqued my curiosity and I will be looking for her other books.
I highly recommend this book but be warned it is hard to put down and will stay with you long after you finish!