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Search tags: Castle-in-the-Air
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review 2018-06-15 12:23
Adult story from a well-loved author
The Blue Castle - L.M. Montgomery

Valancy Stirling has been emotionally abused all her life, she is worn down into a shadow of a human, dependant on others (as many women were at the time), dealing with her wants and needs being neglected, she escapes in the works of John Foster, who writes about nature. She sometimes escapes to an imaginary place that is a blue castle.

Her life changes when she hears that she has a deadly heart condition and now she only has a short time to live and she decides that she's not going to live her life as it was, she's going to live her life as she wants. This leads her on an adventure that will change her life forever.

I really enjoyed it, found it uplifting and hopeful.

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review 2018-06-14 03:27
The Castle in the Attic by Elizabeth Wintrop
The Castle in the Attic - Elizabeth Winthrop

William is having a hard time adjusting. He's just found out that his beloved Mrs. Philips is leaving him to return home to London. She's been his companion since he was born, but now he's old enough to look after himself, and, hey, his parents are going to spend more time with him now. William is taking it so hard, because Mrs. Philips is family, but also because he's a bit of a loner, with only one friend not a British nanny, and - dare I say a - crybaby? I scrubbed away a lot of this characterization when I was little, so it was surprising to read it now. That is not why the book has faded for me. William's character, as atypical as it is for such an 'early' kids novel, is vital to the success of the story. His success is so much more meaningful knowing his struggles.

My problem was everything else. 'The Castle in the Attic' was full of mystery and magic, and I imagined myself exploring the castle, meeting Sir Simon, learning swordplay and, why not?, gymnastics. The prophecy was thrilling, the danger so clear. As an adult all of this faded into the simple language demanded at the time. The world William travels to didn't feel convincing, and the nanny problem seemed absurd to me. Has William never really bonded with his parents before this? Who would hire a nanny knowing that was the result? Winthrop likely didn't intend this, but it felt as if Mrs. Philips was responsible for coddling William and her presence isolated him most of the other children.

This is still a worthy book for kids, but I'm afraid its another one lost in the nostalgia wars.

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review 2018-05-27 18:36
Design Your Destiny...
Welcome to Castle Cove: A Design Your Destiny Novel - Kory M. Shrum

I've been wanting to read an adult choose your own adventure story for a while so I thought I'd try this one out. I read it several different ways and it was tons of fun but I just wish the stories were longer. It seemed like I reached the endings of the stories too quickly so it wasn't quite satisfying to me. If you like short stories though, you'll probably enjoy it more then I did and it is a fun diversion from the norm.

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review 2018-05-16 17:38
The Other Lady Vanishes by Amanda Quick
The Other Lady Vanishes - Amanda Quick

Adelaide Blake escapes from her involuntary residence at a private asylum for the insane and seeks refuge in the small Californian town of Burning Cove. Working as a tearoom waitress, she does her best in not getting noticed, but she still manages to get the attention of Jake Truett, a recently widowed businessman recuperating his shattered nerves in Burning Cove.

Adelaide soon discovers Jake's nerves are as steely as hers, when he rushes to her rescue brandishing a gun, and when psychic to the stars Madam Zolanda plunges to her death, unwittingly fulfilling her own prediction of someone dying a bloody death, Jake's nerves of steel come in handy as it soon becomes apparent Zolanda and Adelaide's cases are connected.


Unlike its predecessor, the suspense in this story actually worked well. The entire plot was intriguing and rife with mystery and dangers, and what red herrings there might've been turned out to be genuine clues and connections.
I liked the mystery of it, I liked the guessing game I went through to discover who the villain is, what the possible connections were, who was pulling the strings...And I especially liked the final little twist to the well-developed suspense arc.

It's the rest of the story that lowered the rating. While the time period didn't bother me in this one, and the characters were rather well-drawn (the heroine wasn't off-putting in the least), I missed the romance element. It was there, in the story, but what we got left me cold.
I certainly wasn't convincing and came across as rushed and not as polished as the rest of the story was. Still, in the end, I sensed the seed of it, but that was all it was; the big revelation of feelings jumped the shark.

Still, the suspense saved the day.

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review 2018-04-29 16:20
The Prisoner in the Castle
The Prisoner in the Castle - Susan Elia MacNeal

I am a big fan of this series so I always jump at the chance to read the latest in the series. I was especially eager to read this one after the twist and the end of the last book. I couldn't wait to see where Maggie was going to end up and what she would do.

 

While I enjoy reading about Maggie I have to say that this latest installment of the series did not hold my attention as much as some of the previous books had. Maggie is essentially a prisoner in this book and is left to figure out why everyone around her is dying. At times it felt to me like it was one big game of Clue. The plot moved a bit too slowly for me and at times I became bored. The action towards the end definitely brought my attention back and I enjoyed where Maggie ended up.

 

Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the galley.

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