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review 2020-07-05 08:02
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz - L. Frank Baum

I got this book quite early, but it was a book I chose myself, so maybe somewhere between 7-10 years old? Anyway, I enjoyed it even though it was old. It was a Swedish translation. Then we went to England on vacation a couple of times and my sister found four hardcover books with illustrations that belonged in the same series as that first book (that was hardcover too). It wasn’t that expensive back then, or maybe I didn’t notice because my parents paid for it. :)

Most people have read the book at some point so I won’t say much about the plot - a girl from Kansas is ripped from her family, inside the family home, by a hurricane/twister and comes to a magical fairytale country, called Oz. Because she misses her family she tries to get home. That’s basically the story.

I understand. I’d never survive without my family, even though Dorothy was lucky to get her house with her with, presumably, what little stuff she had.

Whenever people ask what fantasy world you’d like to live in most people mention Tolkien’s Middle Earth, Narnia and Harry Potter’s world, but I usually answer Dinotopia. I’m obsessed with that island with cute dinosaurs.

However, since I managed to download a free copy of the e-book, I now also think that the land of Oz might be an attractive option. :) Especially now. (Doctor Who isn’t primarily a book but to live inside the TARDIS would also be cool).
For instance, in Oz you have trees that grow breakfast- and lunch boxes and bushes with macaroons. :)

At the moment, my sister and I are also watching the first season of animated tv series called Lost in Oz and seems to be a modern retelling of the original story. It’s actually quite good, even though it’s aimed at children. Older kids, I think, because mine don’t find it that interesting. It’s fun, cute and quite thrilling too.

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review 2020-07-04 22:26
The Conductors - Nicole Glover
The Conductors - Nicole Glover

The Conductors was one of those books where the premise was so unique that I immediately wanted to read it, so I was delighted when it turned up on Netgalley and my request was granted. Mostly, it lived up to my expectations, though there were a couple of things about it that didn't quite work for me, perhaps showing that this is a debut novel. 

 

The basic premise of The Conductors is that it's set in the post-Civil War United States, with flashbacks to earlier times, but this is an America with one big difference - the existence of magic, in two different forms. The magic wielded by some slaves, and therefore by freed men and women after the war that is based on the elements - either sigils of the constellations or brewed - as opposed to the wand-based Sorcery restricted to white people. While this is an intriguing way of structuring a magic system, there are clear omissions in the world-building (whether by design or not) especially around how much more effective the elemental magic seems to be. 

 

As well as talking about magic, this is also a murder mystery with a number of dead bodies cropping up along the way. Our protagonists, formerly the eponymous conductors of runaway slaves on the Underground Railroad with the use of magic, find themselves in the middle of this scenario and take on the role of investigators with vigour. Unfortunately, the pacing of the book starts to lag a little in the middle and my interest started to wane a little - again, perhaps, the mark of a first novel?

 

Everything gets resolved in the end, I'm sure you'll be glad to hear, and this seems to be a standalone so there's no nasty cliffhanger for the next book to deal with. All in all, The Conductors is an entertaining read and clearly a labour of love for the author, who has worked hard in terms of her research. I look forward to seeing what she comes up with next. 

 

 

I received a free copy of this book from the publishers via Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2020-07-04 13:52
The Watchmaker's Daughter by C J Archer
The Watchmaker's Daughter (Glass and Steele) (Volume 1) - C.J. Archer

From Amazon’s book page:

India Steele is desperate. Her father is dead, her fiancé took her inheritance, and no one will employ her, despite years working for her watchmaker father. Indeed, the other London watchmakers seem frightened of her. Alone, poor, and at the end of her tether, India takes employment with the only person who'll accept her - an enigmatic and mysterious man from America. A man who possesses a strange watch that rejuvenates him when he's ill. Matthew Glass must find a particular watchmaker, but he won't tell India why any old one won't do. Nor will he tell her what he does back home, and how he can afford to stay in a house in one of London's best streets. So when she reads about an American outlaw known as the Dark Rider arriving in England, she suspects Mr. Glass is the fugitive. When danger comes to their door, she's certain of it. But if she notifies the authorities, she'll find herself unemployed and homeless again - and she will have betrayed the man who saved her life.

This really summarizes the story well. I don’t think I could have said it better. Anyway, this was a good read. I’d read about this book a long time ago and decided I wanted to read it ’some time’. When I had the opportunity to download it for free, I was pleased. I’m even more pleased now. This book was everything I had hoped it would be. It’s very well written. It seems to be a bit ’steampunk’, but to begin with, it comes across mostly as a historic story. India struggles with the role society demands she plays. She knows she has a talent for watches, but doesn’t have a clue how far that talent goes. In fact, there is so much she doesn’t know, but as she works with the mysterious mr Glass, she is beginning to suspect there’s far more to watchmaking than she’s been led to believe. And why do most of her father’s old colleagues seem to fear her?

In my opinion this is a very good fantasy story, at least if you like a sort of alternate history.

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url 2020-07-04 10:11
Which Gambling Platform Is Better, Online Casino Or Fantasy Sports Betting?

 

There are millions of fan to online casino and fantasy sports betting gambling but question is which is popular way to entertain people. May be some people choose online casino and some choose sports betting.

Source: interarticles.com/article/99304-which-gambling-platform-is-better-online-casino-or-fantasy-sports-betting
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text 2020-07-03 00:13
Mythical Girls
Mythical Girls - Alex McGilvery Mythical Girls is a short story collection that focuses around what happens when girls are given control of mythical objects. With eleven stories total, there is a good variety of stories, objects, and characters. With any anthology, there were stories that I liked more than others and some that I disliked. Luckily, I really enjoyed most of the stories in this anthology. The book started out strong with Daybreak where Queen Rajakumari takes leadership of a kingdom after the King dies. The writing quickly sets the scene and allowed me to get to know Queen Rajakumari and what she was up against. I loved how she didn't take crap and used the other Queens as allies instead of enemies. This was definitely a story that I wanted to stay in longer. Another story I enjoyed was An Unexpected Weapon. I have read other stories by this author and with the same characters that are in this short, so I really enjoyed being with the characters again and seeing them gain confidence in a new situation. The Witch's Staff is also a story I enjoyed, incorporating fun otherworldly characters and a great message about bullying and forgiveness in two different worlds. The Rishika of the Manika was another great story. I really enjoyed the fantasy elements and the mythical object. The lessons in power, leadership and getting what you wish for are very strong. Most of the stories are aimed at Middle Grade readers, however some seem more appropriate for young adult or even new adult readers. I love the idea of giving girls the power of all of these mythical objects that are generally controlled by by men and seeing the choices that they make. This book was received for free in return for an honest review.
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