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review 2017-06-24 00:20
The Circular Staircase by Mary Roberts Rinehart
The Circular Staircase - Mary Roberts Rinehart

This was a quaint old mystery, and the writing was suffused with a surprising amount of humour (it helped birth the “character sets pocket on fire with pipe” shelf). Originally published in 1908, the narrator is an elderly spinster who gets mired in a murder investigation when she leases a house in the country for the summer. The mystery had a lot of twisty bits but I got tired of the endless foreshadowing. That said, it was still a fun read, and I might seek out more of Rinehart’s books in the future.

 

I read this for booklikes-opoly Free Friday #1. I’ve seen different page numbers (I actually read the Gutenberg version), so I’m going with 192, which seems reasonable and nets me $4 for my bank (new total: $136).

 

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review 2017-06-23 18:30
Ok read.
Breath of Fire - Amanda Bouchet

But it feels a bit repetitive.

 

Heroine has strong magic, gods help, she nearly dies while trying to save everybody, doesn't want to be like her mother.

 

Also it feels like a lot of standard fantasy elements found their way into the world, it also felt a bit "westeros"...

 

 

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review 2017-06-23 18:27
Great fantasy novel.
A Promise of Fire - Amanda Bouchet

With some cool romance.

 

I really enjoyed the world building, the two protags and the "team". 

 

 

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review 2017-06-23 03:32
Crocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters
Crocodile on the Sandbank - Elizabeth Peters

Series: Amelia Peabody #1

 

I didn’t like the tone this book started off with, and I found Amelia really annoying, at least at the start. She grew on me once she picked up Evelyn as a companion, however. I did like their interactions. Amelia, a rich Englishwoman, has travelled to Rome from where she plans to sail on to Egypt to winter voyaging up the Nile when she encounters Evelyn, who seems a suitable replacement for the paid companion who had recently become ill and had to be sent back home. So Amelia and Evelyn both set off for Egypt where they do some sightseeing and hire a boat to take them up the Nile. Partway through their voyage they fetch up at an archaeological dig where strange happenings occur and a mummy seems to have come back from the dead. Maybe. That’s the mystery.

 

I had guessed a lot about the resolution of the mystery although I’ll admit I hadn’t quite worked out every detail. I ended up enjoying the book despite the rough beginning, so I may look into whether my library has the next one. Eventually.

 

I read this for booklikes-opoly square New Orleans Station #14 “Read a book that involves overseas travel”. Since Amelia has travelled first to Rome and then travels on to Egypt, I think the book fits. At 226 pages, with the new rules in effect, this nets me $6 for my bank, bringing my total balance to $132. Yay!

 

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review 2017-06-22 21:16
Review: Warrior of Fire (Blood & Silver #2) by Shona Husk 4 out of 5 stars
Warrior of Fire - Shona Husk

This is the second installment in the Blood and Silver series. I honestly feel that this story cannot be read as a stand alone to be fully enjoyed as there are many aspects that would be missed if the first story is not read, well, first.

Leira and Julian are both part of an ancient yet almost extinct magical race called Albah. Because of prejudice and misconceptions about magic, their race has been hunted for as long as they can remember and now Julian is a target of those that want to end the Albah.

Fate plays an important role here but it’s not the focal point. The author manages to dance around it by making the characters think there is an already established path for everyone but also plays with the outcome by giving them infinite options depending on the choices people make.
In the case of Leira, and because of her magic, she knew she and Julian were supposed to meet but as the story progressed she wasn’t so sure anymore if that meant if they were supposed to be lovers or if he was just supposed to be in her life as something else. Julian knew there had to be more than magic and fate involved in their relationship because of the chemistry between them, and it was not just physical attraction but something deeper. And I definitely thanked the author for that because she didn’t go for the insta-lust here.
In the end, in spite of magic, fate, and crazy people going after them, they decided that risking it all for an uncertain but happy future was worth the risk.

The pace was a little slow for my taste but I’m willing to overlook it because I really liked this fantasy world, the complex characters and I thought this was a well-developed story.

*** I received this book from the author at no cost to me and I volunteered to read it; this is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher.***

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