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text 2017-06-02 10:11
REVIEW BY AMY - The Tribulations of August Barton by Jennifer LeBlanc
The Tribulations of August Barton - Jennifer LeBlanc
August Barton could never have mentally prepared himself for his freshman year of college: not only has his anxiety increased, but his parents are divorcing, his new roommate thinks Augie is the biggest nerd in existence, and his grandma, a retired prostitute named Gertie, has taken to running away from her nursing home. 

Augie just wants to hole up in his dorm room with his Star Wars collectables and textbooks, but Gertie is not about to let that happen. What ensues is a crazy ride including naked trespassing, befriending and local biker gang, and maybe-just maybe-with Augie defeating his anxiety and actually getting the girl. 


Source: sites.google.com/site/archaeolibrarian/amy/thetribulationsofaugustbartonbyjenniferleblanc
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text 2017-05-19 19:30
RT Booklover's Convention 2017 - Day Two
Outfoxed by Love (Kodiak Point Book 2) - Eve Langlais
What a Lady Craves - Ashlyn Macnamara
Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War - Lauren Willig,Joshilyn Jackson;Hazel Gaynor;Mary McNear;Nadia Hashimi;Emmi Itäranta;CJ Hauser;Katherine Harbour;Rebecca Rotert;Holly Brown;M. P. Cooley;Carrie La Seur;Sarah Creech,Jennifer Robson,Marci Jefferson,Jessica Brockmole,Beatriz Williams,Evangeli
An Extraordinary Union - Alyssa Cole
Ten Days in August - Kate McMurray
Kissing the Captain - Kianna Alexander
Forbidden - Beverly Jenkins
The Lawyer's Luck: A Home to Milford College prequel novella - Piper Huguley,Piper Huguley
Tycoon - Joanna Shupe

Day One post



Wednesday (May 3rd) was the official start to the convention. I skipped the 7am work outs since I was still jet lagged, but I could only make myself get a few hours of sleep (a habit that lasted the entire convention). I hit up the coffee shop for a venti-sized tea and a piece of banana bread (I don't trust hotel catering to have enough food for all attendees) and met up with a fellow COYER group member and BL'er Lexxie (Unconventional Book Views)! After having breakfast with Lexxie, I went to the welcome breakfast; the guest speaker was Karen Robards. I thought she did an okay job opening the convention, but it seemed a lot of her speech was about previous, long ago RT cons and not much about this one. That was another theme - most attendees are long time RT convention goers and there is a feeling of cliques and talking about the old times. Then the staff at RT each had to take the mic to talk (boring)...which authors in attendance used that time to start pushing their books to the readers at their tables. Lots of aspiring and current authors writing "dark, gritty" romantic suspense is my take away.


First reader event I went to was Trope Bingo. The organizers did not plan to have so many people attend this event and ended up scrambling to set up more tables. Then more people showed up after another reader event closed due to running out of supplies. I had fun at the Bingo and met some readers that wanted to talk about what their favorite/least favorite tropes were.


Next I went to the Maple Syrup and Mounties reader event. This was one of the best reader events of the convention! Funny, smart ladies (authors Viola Grace, Lucy Farago, Eve Langlais, Ashlynn Macnamara, and Mandy Rosko) who organized and prepared for the crowd. The swag was pretty great too. FYI: Eve Langlais is pretty damn proud that she was able to put a moose shifter romance on the best seller list (Outfoxed by Love) and Ashlynn Macnamara is proud of her books' butt covers (Eton Boys Trilogy). These authors not only enjoyed interacting with the audience (it was a rowdy quiz type of event), but they seemed to really enjoy being around each other. One of my highlights of the convention.


Lunch time and then I stood in line for the one reader event I was most looking forward to - the Smart Bitches, Trashy Books Reader Recommendation Party! It definitely lived up to my expectations. I ended up winning a raffle, so I took home a short story collection centered around World War I called Fall of Poppies. I have been eyeing this book for some time now and when I saw it on the prize table I had to grab it. The Bitches were as lovely and funny as they are on the blog and on the podcast. Another big highlight for me, as it was truly about the readers talking about books with other readers.


Some books recommended:

The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne (historical set during the French Revolution)

The Iron Duke Series by Meljean Brooks (steampunk)

Nice Girls Don't Have Fangs by Molly Harper (paranormal)

Blood on the Earth (Soulwood #1) by Faith Hunter (spin-off of the Jane Yellowrock series)

Roller Girl (Lake Lovelace #3) by Vanessa North (f/f contemporary featuring a trans woman as one half of the couple)

When a Scot Ties the Knot by Tessa Dare (historical)

Bedchamber Games by Tracey Anne Warren (historical)

The Glassblower Series by Petra Durst Benning (historical)

Pages of the Mind by Jeffe Kennedy (fantasy)

The First Star I See Tonight by Susan Elizabeth Phillips (sports contemporary romance)

Rites of Passage (Tulsa Thunderbirds #4) by Catherine Gayle (sports contemporary romance with HIV+ characters)

A Promise of Fire (Kingmaker Chronicles #1) by Amanda Bouchet (fantasy)

Anything by KJ Charles pretty much



The SBTB party was still going but I left after winning so I could make it to my first author panel, Welcome to Americana, featuring Alyssa Cole, Kianna Alexander, Kate McMurray, Beverly Jenkins, Piper Huguley, and Joanna Shupe. What a great discussion! Everything from the state of American historical romance (in terms of what is being published right now) to how they go about researching the history for their stories. Kate McMurray has a really great blog post on her website in regards to POC/LGBT+ people in historical romance not being present in mainstream historical romance and that readers really have to search to find the authors that are writing outside the mainstream. Most importantly, American historical romance is oversaturated with cowboys and mail order brides - and these authors are trying to expand American historical romance to include POC/LGBT+/urbanites. Everyone on the panel had some very thought-provoking things to say about racism, sexism, homophobia, and historical romance writing. Shout out to reference and research librarians for providing plot bunnies and historical research for the authors.


Took a much needed break from all the people, then headed to the Petticoats & Pistols party. Here the organizers actually had a big enough room that attendees could walk and mingle about without being crushed. I enjoyed the outfits the authors and cover models wore and the design of the party. Probably my favorite social event of the convention - it was low-key enough to take in at my leisure, but high-spirited enough to build excitement for the attendees. Here I got to meet Merry Farmer, a personal favorite of mine and talk with Joanna Shupe about her panel I attended. Shupe encouraged me to try my hand at writing historical romance. Maybe....someday.


After the party I was tired from being around so many people all day, so I got dinner and headed to my room. I didn't expect or intend to make this a very historical romance intensive day, but it is my favorite subgenre. So many new to me authors to try.

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review 2017-05-03 10:28
August Folly - DNF
August Folly (Virago Modern Classics) - Angela Thirkell

I hate to do this to an Angela Thirkell book, because I've truly enjoyed every other book of hers I've read so far, but I can't keep on.


I don't like Richard, who, as of page 63, is the main character.  He's sulky and immature and even worse, he's starting to moon over a woman his mother's age who is happily married and has 9 children.  I have no doubt whatsoever that subsequent events will mature him and his romantic interests will soon be redirected into more appropriate avenues, with much hilarity ensuing in the process.  But I can't make myself go through the painful bits to get to the funny bits.


Angela Thirkell was a prolific author so there was bound to be one I didn't love, and I'll not let this one damp my enthusiasm.  





Total pages: 284

Pages read: 64  (~26%)

$ banked:  $1.00

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text 2017-04-27 10:55
27th April 2017
The Piano Lesson - August Wilson

Confront the dark parts of yourself, and work to banish them with illumination and forgiveness. Your willingness to wrestle with your demons will cause your angels to sing.

August Wilson


Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright August Wilson (born April 27, 1945) only attended school until the age of 15, but was largely self-educated thereafter. He spent so much time reading at the Carnegie Library in Pittsburgh that they later awarded him an honorary degree.

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review 2017-04-13 09:01
Historischer Wien-Krimi
Der zweite Reiter: Ein Fall für August Emmerich - Kriminalroman - Alex Beer

Die Donaumetropole Wien nach dem 1. Weltkrieg. Hunger, Elend und Kriegsveteranen prägen das Bild der Stadt und so mancher sieht im Freitod den einzigen Ausweg. Doch als Polizeiagent August Emmerich eine Leiche entdeckt, ist ihm der angebliche Selbstmord zu offensichtlich und er geht eigenständig Ermittlungen an. Denn ein Kriegszitterer kann unmöglich auf sich selbst schießen, meint Emmerich, und ist dabei einem großen Verbrechen auf der Spur.

„Der zweite Reiter“ ist ein historischer Krimi, der im Wien nach dem 1. Weltkrieg spielt. Allein dadurch hat die Autorin ein besonderes Setting erschaffen, weil man auf diesen Zeitraum nur selten in Büchern trifft. 

So siedelt sie die Ermittlungen von August Emmerich und seinen Assistenten Ferdinand Winter mitten in bewegende Zeiten an, die vom Untergang der K.u.K.-Monarchie geprägt sind. Angefangen vom alten Adel, der den Abgang von Kaiser und Kaisertum nicht fassen kann, über die Kriegsinvaliden, die kaum eines Blickes gewürdigt werden, bis hin zu den historischen Rahmenbedingungen, die von Alex Beer geschickt zu einem Gesamtbild vereint werden. 

Beispielsweise wundert sich Emmerich über diesen bekannten Psychologen Freud, auf dessen Couch so manches Leid von der Seele geredet wird, er freut sich über das Wundermittelchen Heroin, das einen körperlichen Höhenflug garantiert, oder liefert sich mit verarmten Adel ein Wortgefecht, indem die neuen Zeiten zur Geltung kommen, von denen aber keiner weiß, wie sie funktionieren werden.

Dieses historische Setting, durchzogen von einer Atmosphäre der verlorenen Würde und ungeahnter Hoffnung, hat mir besonders gut gefallen. Es wird ein Gefühl für diese Zeit vermittelt, die einerseits so lang her und andrerseits zwischen den Zeilen greifbar nah scheint. Alex Beer schickt den Leser durch Wien, quer durch bekannte Straßennamen und wer sich in dieser Stadt ein bisschen auskennt, merkt schnell, dass sich in den letzten 100 Jahren gar nicht so viel verändert hat.

Polizeiagent August Emmerich hat es nicht leicht. Er verschweigt seine Kriegsverletzung, weil er um seinen Einsatz im Außendienst fürchtet und unbedingt zur Abteilung „Leib und Leben“ versetzt werden will. So legt er sich schon einmal mit Vorgesetzten an, überschreitet manche Kompetenz oder erfindet ein Gesetz, wenn es sich seinen Ermittlungen als nützlich erweist. Privat wird ihm vom Leben übel mitgespielt und ich will gar nicht wissen, wie vielen Menschen es nach dem Krieg ähnlich ergangen ist. Ich habe August Emmerich als angenehmen, sympathischen Ermittler empfunden, der sich mit einer guten Portion Schmäh schon zu helfen weiß. 

Die Krimihandlung selbst ist solide, durchdacht und authentisch geschildert. Emmerich ermittelt in diesem Selbstmordfall, von dem er nicht glaubt, dass es tatsächlich ein Freitod war. Dabei kommt er beängstigenden Machenschaften auf die Spur und deckt größere Zusammenhänge auf, mit denen ich so nicht gerechnet hatte.

Außerdem hat die Autorin eine gute Balance zwischen historischem Hintergrund, Ermittlungstätigkeit und ihrem Protagonisten geschaffen, die von ihrem angenehm flüssigen Schreibstil getragen wird. Erwähnenswert sind noch etliche Mundartphrasen, die auch heutzutage im Alltag verwendet werden und mir als Österreicherin natürlich sehr gut gefallen haben. 

Insgesamt bietet Alex Beer mit „Der zweite Reiter“ einen historisch interessanten, gut durchdachten Reihenauftakt, der mit dem sympathischen Ermittler und ihrem Gefühl für die untergegangene Donaumonarchie Lust auf weitere Teile der Reihe macht.

Source: zeit-fuer-neue-genres.blogspot.co.at
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