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text 2018-10-19 22:28
Reading progress update: I've read 10 out of 272 pages.
American Reformers, 1815-1860, Revised Edition - Ronald G. Walters

Earlier this week I combed through my shelves and pulled out a half-dozen books to add to the book box. All of them were unread, but they are all books that I can get through our district's library system. One of them is Walters's book on antebellum reformers, which I have been meaning to read for years; I sampled the introduction, and I came across this:

[T]he patterns of thought were the same: old values were being lost and whatever was at fault had to be eliminated or controlled if America was to fulfill its destiny. Behind that reasoning was a suspicious mentality characteristic of many antebellum reformers, as well as non-reformers, that attributed the nations troubles to conspiracies of one sort or another . . . To believe that plotters were responsible for what was happening to the country was wrong; but it was part of a quest, going back at least to the eighteenth century, for secular terms in which to analyze politics and social change. Rather than seeing the hand of God moving events, many antebellum Americans saw the hands of sinister individuals. That may not have been accurate, but it was about as good as any other explanation available before Marx and modern social science.

And just like that, my reading for this weekend was set.

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review 2018-09-02 14:10
The Last Hours - Minette Walters 
The Last Hours - Minette Walters

The first outbreaks of the Black Death in Dorset. There is crime and secrets and lies, but this is counterbalanced by great kindness and cooperation and thought. You wouldn't think it could be a hopeful kind of book, but even as the plague strikes so swiftly with such high mortality, it does free up all the wealth and power that was gathered into so few hands.


Now I just have to wait for the story to be continued.


It's situations like this that make me reluctant to start a series until it's all written


Library copy


Edited to add, 9/2/18:  I often give authors of fiction about plagues a hard time for giving their imagined diseases an easy transmission, an incredibly high mortality rate, and a very brief latency: these three ratios all being very high means an infection will burn out in a population too quickly to spread. Even the worst plagues in naive populations don't score high on all three. They also tend to avoid people getting ill and recovering, which some portion of the population usually does. Most fiction wrlters avoid the importance of hygiene and sanitation and supportive care: they have everyone dying from the primary disease directly rather than address indirect mortality. I've encountered more than a few books that use 99.99% in order to decrease the surplus population. I mention this because I can only think of two writers who don't cheat that way: Connie Willis and now Minette Walters. If you want realistic plagues, these are the women to read.


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text 2018-08-28 14:31
Good and Bad Decisions
The Last Hours - Minette Walters

It was wise of me to pick my fattest book for my pre-read. But it was also a really good one, and I was eager to see what happened next, and I had a lot of free time this weekend to spend on the sofa with cats and family, reading away. So now it's done, and I 've got that book hangover where I don't want to go back to the books I was supposed to be reading to clear the shelves for September 1st.


And also it's going to be harder to update and post my spreadsheet from my phone.



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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-08-27 20:32
Drakon Unchained: Blood of the Drakon - Book Review ***spoilers***
Drakon Unchained - N.J. Walters

Drakon Unchained: Blood of the Drakon

N.J. Walters  

Release Date - 27th August 2018

Entangled Publishing


She had dedicated her entire life to this, to finding her childhood friend, the one person who had made her feel special, who had made her feel like she was worth something. Was she about to find him? Was everything about to change?

Victoria Marshall, a women with a rare ability, she has visions of both the past and sometimes the present through her dreams.

Luther Henderson is the tough and handsome head of security for a very dangerous man,  Herman Temple; a man Victoria hopes can lead her to Sergei, her childhood Drakon friend, and Katherine, his wife. She knows that they are being held captive, as well as tortured, she has unfortunately seen this through her visions. She just doesn’t know where they are or why this is happening.

She only took the job as Temple’s assistant because of a vision she had seen that evening, after her job interview. She realized then that he could be the one, the one to lead her to Sergei. He knows something, he has deep secrets, deep ties to covert organisations, she knows he is involved somehow in this nightmare. She is swimming with sharks and there is blood in the water. This is a dangerous game she is playing, one that could cost her her life.

Victoria is drawn to Luther, and he to her. It’s magnetic; they can’t stay away from each other, even though they both know the dangers of fraternizing within their employment under Temple. Employees have vanished for less.


I had the kind pleasure of receiving an advance copy of 'Drakon Unchained: Blood of the Drakon', to which I volunteered to read and review. I was not disappointed.

I was drawn into the book straight away; I felt an immediate connection with the characters, especially Victoria and Luther. I was immersed in their growing relationship from the get-go, I could not get enough, I found this book hard to put down if I'm honest.

I really admired the strong and independent woman in Victoria, she knows her own mind, she has dedicated her life to her mission, nothing and no-one will stand in her way. She is afraid yet fearless, she is independent yet isn’t too proud to take comfort with Luther. She is such a warm character, strong, intelligent, beautiful and fragile. A character I grew to care for and admire.

I’m ashamed to say this was the first N.J. Walters book I have come to read; it definitely won’t be the last. I felt a strong sense of immediate attachment, the realism in the writing connected me deeply with the story and the characters involved, good and bad. I was so deeply invested in fact that I was quite emotional in parts and also by the end of the book, I could feel the tears beginning to well up. I felt a great deal of empathy with the characters, again Victoria and Luther specifically.

“She’d never belonged anywhere before, or to anyone, and his touch silenced the old voices in her head that whispered she wasn’t good enough, that no one wanted her because she was flawed”

I swear the above extract could have been written about me and my lovely soon-to-be husband.

N.J. Walters’ writing is beautiful; the story flows easily chapter to chapter, taking you along on Victoria’s dangerous journey into the realms of the dangerous ‘Knights of the dragon’, on her quest to free Sergei and Katherine, and her growing relationship with Luther. I felt like I was there, I felt like I was along for the ride, and what a ride it was.

This is book 5 in the ‘Blood of the Drakon’ series,

Now as I have said previously, I have not read any other N. J. Walters material, so I cannot compare to the previous books or how the story flows from there. I can say with confidence that this didn’t hinder the story one bit. I felt there was plenty of detail included; well enough explained that I never felt lost or confused.


I whole heartedly give this book 5/5.

I look forward to reading more from N.J.Walters in the future (and from the past).


Lesley-Ann (Housewife of Horror)


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review 2018-08-27 10:00
Release Day Review! Drakon Unchianed (Blood of the Drakon #5) N.J. Walters!
Drakon Unchained - N.J. Walters



Victoria Marshall is living a lie. She works for a member of the Knights of the Dragon, a secret society that traps and uses dragons for their own gain. As a child, she made an unlikely friend—a drakon. He went missing, and she’s spent the past twenty years searching for him. The only thing distracting her from her mission is Luther Henderson, her boss’s new head of security.


Luther is also living a lie. One, if discovered, could lead to a fate worse than death. He’s attracted to Victoria, but can’t fully trust her, doesn’t know if she’s truly innocent or a true member of the Knights. It’s not only his life at stake, but those of the people he loves.


As they’re thrust deeper into the dangerous dealings of the Knights, they each have to share their secrets in order to survive.



Victoria and Luther are both living a lie, on a mission to save a dragon and if they don’t share their secrets with each other they won’t survive.


This scintillating story draws readers in with strong, fascinating characters that are easily understood and readers can’t help but feel the intensity of their emotional turmoil as they struggle to keep their cool amongst enemies while fighting their sizzling attraction. The chemistry between Victoria and Luther is full of electricity that heats up the pages and keeps readers glued to their story.


The plot is fast paced and flows smoothly throughout the book while keeping readers on the edge of their seat with lots of exciting adrenaline pumping events. Readers can practically feel the tension that the hero and heroine put off as they navigate their situation, try to determine who they can trust and outwit the really malicious bad guys. The attraction between these two of course adds to that tension with their secrets making things even more intense and intriguing while surprising twists and turns keeps everyone on their toes.


This fascinating world has some distinctive elements that add to the mystique and wonder of the Drakons and their enemies, so readers get a unique and entertaining read with each story and Drakon Unchained adds a titillating twist to the world and introduces new Drakon into the world while holding readers captive from the very beginning.



Add Drakon Unchained to your shelves at:


Goodreads - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40801897-drakon-unchained


BookBub - https://www.bookbub.com/books/drakon-unchained-by-n-j-walters



Drakon Unchained is the 5th book in the Blood of the Drakon series


Goodreads - https://www.goodreads.com/series/193626-blood-of-the-drakon


Author - http://www.njwalters.com/bloodofthedrakon.html


Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07FPL6NSR?ref=series_rw_dp_labf



which includes


1 Drakon's Promise
2 Drakon's Prey
3 Drakon's Plunder
4 Drakon's Past
5 Drakon Unchained


is available in print or ebook at:


Entangled - https://entangledpublishing.com/drakon-unchained.html


Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/Drakon-Unchained-Blood-N-J-Walters-ebook/dp/B07FMG4W2W/


B&N - http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/9781640636248?name=Drakon%20Unchained


iBooks - http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/isbn9781640636248?name=Drakon%20Unchained&uo=8&at=1010lsQz


Kobo - https://www.kobo.com/us/en/search?Query=9781640636248&name=Drakon%20Unchained


GPlay - https://play.google.com/store/books/details/N_J_Walters_Drakon_Unchained?id=pCFlDwAAQBAJ


A-UK - https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07FMG4W2W?tag=entangpublis-20&name=Drakon%20Unchained


A-Au - https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B07FMG4W2W?tag=entangpublis-20&name=Drakon%20Unchained


A-CA - https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B07FMG4W2W?tag=entangpublis-20&name=Drakon%20Unchained



Once upon a time N.J. had the idea that she would like to quit her job at the bookstore, sell everything she owned, leave her hometown, and write romance novels in a place where no one knew her. And she did. Two years later, she went back to the bookstore and her hometown and settled in for another seven years.

One day she gave notice at her job on a Friday morning. On Sunday afternoon, she received a tentative acceptance for her first erotic romance novel and life would never be the same.


N.J. Walters is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who has always been a voracious reader, and now she spends her days writing novels of her own. Vampires, werewolves, dragons, time-travelers, seductive handymen, and next-door neighbors with smoldering good looks—all vie for her attention. It’s a tough life, but someone’s got to live it.

Author Website: http://www.njwalters.com

Author Blog: http://njwalters.blogspot.ca/

Author Twitter: https://twitter.com/njwaltersauthor

Author Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/N.J.WaltersAuthor


Author Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.ca/njwaltersauthor/

Author Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/NJWalters

Newsletter: https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/awakeningdesires/info




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