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Search tags: AG-Howard
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text 2017-11-15 00:09
Ice By Linda Howard $1.99
Ice - Linda Howard

On holiday leave from the service, Gabriel McQueen is sent into a brewing ice storm to make sure that his father’s distant neighbor, Lolly Helton, who has fallen out of contact, is safe and sound. It’s a trip that Gabriel would rather not make, given the bitter winter weather—and the icy conditions that have always existed between him and Lolly. Arriving at Lolly’s home, Gabriel spots strangers through the windows—one of them packing a weapon—and kicks into combat mode. But once Lolly is rescued, the heat—and the hunt—are on. Snowbound, unarmed, and literally under the gun, Gabriel and Lolly must depend on each other to endure the merciless forces of nature and evade the ruthless enemy out in the blackness of the silent night—and out for their blood.

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review 2017-11-10 16:15
The Liar's Girl
The Liar's Girl - Catherine Ryan Howard

When Ali is nineteen she begins college at St. John's and meets charismatic, attractive Will and they become inseparable. Ali is shocked when she learns that Will is the Canal Killer - having stalked and drowned five young women in the muddy waters of the Grand Canal, including Ali's best friend, Liz. Will has been sentenced to life in jail. But it's been ten years and Will is locked up in the city's Central Psychiatric Hospital, so when a young woman is found in the Grand Canal the Garda detectives visit Will in hopes that he can help them solve the copycat killing. But Will won't speak. The only way he will is if Ali comes to see him. The last thing Ali wants is to leave her anonymity and the Netherlands to return to a time she's worked so hard to forget. But the right thing to do is to go back and so she does.

I really had to think about what to rate this. The first chapter was great, it was strong, it pulled me in. I loved the setting. I really enjoyed the chapters about Ali's past, about the excitement about going to college with her best friend and how everything is so new to them. The characters were three-dimensional. But I felt like in the present chapters there was just a whole lot of the same thing going on which also made it feel as though a whole lot of nothing happened. Ali was brought back to Ireland to solve a case - really? The detectives are trained to do this sort of thing, that's their job and they had to bring in someone else to do it for them? It just didn't sit well with me.

 

Thank you to Netgalley and Blackstone Publishing for an ARC.

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text 2017-11-06 03:37
16 Festive Tasks | Square 1 - Dia de Muertos Book Task
Frost Line - Linda Howard,Linda Winstead Jones

Book themes for Día de Muertos and All Saint’s Day:  A book that has a primarily black and white cover, or one that has all the colours (ROYGBIV) together on the cover.

 

 

I was going through my Kindle and found this book.  Totally ROYGBIV, right?  Starting it today.  And it's also a book I need to read for another challenge--score two!

 

 

16 Festive Tasks - Dia de los Muertos and All Saints' Day

 

 

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text 2017-10-18 17:32
What we get wrong about the military history of the Civil War, and why it's relevant today
Blue and Gray Diplomacy: A History of Union and Confederate Foreign Relations - Howard Jones

Lately I've been groping toward one of those revelations that may be obvious to some but is incredibly illuminating of some of the problems in our country today, which is that we focus on the wrong things when it comes to the military history of the Civil War.

 

This is something that I've come to appreciate only gradually. When I was growing up what I knew about the Civil War was defined by the literature generated by the centenary of the conflict, during which authors such as Bruce Catton and Shelby Foote wrote highly readable (and still widely read) series about the conflict. These books generally concentrated on the war in the eastern theater, where the Armies of the Potomac and Northern Virginia butted heads for four years before the Union forces finally ground down the Confederate Army. This is where most of the memorable battles (First Bull Run, Antietam, Gettysburg) were fought, and where some of the most recognizable names served. This conception stayed with me though high school (surviving even my largely uninformed reading of James McPherson's classic book on the era) and up through college, though more through lack of reexamination than anything else.

 

It wasn't until I read Brian Holden Reid's short study of the major wars of the mid-19th century that I began to appreciate how misguided I have been. Reid pointed out something that seemed so obvious in retrospect, which is that, contrary to the narrative of a conflict that was decided only with the defeat of Robert E. Lee in Virginia, the war was really won by the Union much earlier, through the effective adoption of Winfield's Scott's proposal to economically strangle the South with a combination of blockade and control of the Mississippi River. Focusing the war on this aspect of it change the conceptualization of the war dramatically, from one in which Union generals are continually outmatched by the military genius of Robert E. Lee to one where the Union asserts a steadily growing dominance over the South over the course of the war, while the Confederacy increasingly finds itself in a struggle it cannot win.

 

Given this, I've come to appreciate just how skewed our focus of the war is in the popular imagination. This has its origins in the war itself, as the eastern theater was better covered in the press, which highlighted the clash of the two armies and their respective efforts to capture the other side's capitals. In the process, though, they understated three other aspects which were decisive to the war's outcome: the fighting in the "west" (i.e. the Ohio and Mississippi Review valleys), the U.S. Navy's blockade of the South, and the diplomatic aspects of the war. Perhaps it's understandable why these didn't get more attention at the time -- the naval blockade was grindingly dull for the most part, and the diplomatic developments were largely behind the scenes -- but it was those parts of it which determined the fate of our nation, and where we should be focusing our attention when we study it now.

 

That we have focused both then and afterward on the more narratively exciting aspects of the war is one of the reasons why our popular understanding of the war has been so mistaken. There's another factor that I think is at play, though, which makes my relatively esoteric point here relevant -- our misguided focus on the eastern theater has contributed to the romanticization of the "lost cause" of the Confederacy. By focusing so much attention upon the one theater where the Confederate forces performed the best, we have exaggerated the viability of the Confederacy and made its defeat seem more tragic as a result. That Southerners then and their descendants since have done this is perhaps understandable, but that we continue to do this more generally is inexcusable. It's hardly the only, or even primary reason why we have neo-Confederates running around today refusing to accept the outcome of what was largely a doomed effort from the start, but it certainly doesn't help.

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review 2017-10-09 20:17
Heck yeah this was good!!
An Unkindness of Magicians - Kat Howard

Oh My Lord I can not express how EXTREMELY impressed I am after finishing this book...I want to scream it..I loved loved LOVED this fantastically creul/beautiful book!!! The writing is amazing. The characters are rich and complex and interesting and loveable/loatheable like all well executed characters should be. The Magic is not new. Tithes must be paid for the use of magic and there are those with Power that abuse it and the people who are naive and/or powerless to stop them...but are they??..the Magical World as a whole felt insulated and seedy, hierarchical and often futile but ultimately redeemable and hopeful. Many MANY times I am in the midst of things, right in the thick of it, and when I am forced to put down the book and face Life I find myself contemplating whether or not to pick the book back up again or cut my loses and strike out anew. Usually I begrudgingly pick things back up but An Unkindness of Magicians never gave me a choice. I stole tiny moments whenever and wherever I could to giddily devoure this preorder. This book had me at the start and still hasn't seen fit to let me go.

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