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Search tags: Tara-Sue-Me
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text 2017-12-08 06:20
Advent calender story: December 8th
The Valancourt Book of Victorian Christmas Ghost Stories - Arthur Conan Doyle,Tara Moore,Walter Scott

This story plays on the realistic nineteenth–century fear of death by fire. Between 1848 and 1861, nearly 40000 people in England were burned alive or scalded to death; after the breaching age of five, girls were 60% more susceptible to this end than boys due to their flammable clothing; the danger was also higher for older women. Authorities recommended that Victorians starch cotton, linen, and muslin dresses with fire–resistant chemicals to avoid this danger.

 

From the preface of the story „Bring Me A Light!“.

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review 2017-12-03 16:41
Bookish advent calender: December 1th - December 3th
Classic Ghost Stories: Spooky Tales to Read at Christmas - Various
The Valancourt Book of Victorian Christmas Ghost Stories - Arthur Conan Doyle,Tara Moore,Walter Scott

December 1th: The Open Door by Margaret Oliphant (from Classic Ghost Stories)

 

A story about a father, whose son falls sick after he has encountered something strange in the ruins on their home property, and his subsequent search for the truth behind the encounter.

This short story was an ok one. The parts I enjoyed the most were the nightly trips to the ruins, the juniper bush with a life of its own and the sceptical doctor, who doesn´t believe in superstitious mumbo jumbo. A good and decent story. This will definitely not be my last read by Mrs. Oliphant. 3 Stars.

 

December 2th: They by Rudyard Kipling (from Classic Ghost Stories)

 

This short story has some beautiful writing, even though the prose is too flowery for my taste (do you really need 2,5 pages to tell the reader, that the narrator got lost in the country side? I don´t think so). And I didn´t like the story. 1) There is no suspense at all, because it is clear from the get go what is up with those children and 2) I need someone who explains the ending to me. I didn´t get the ending at all. 1,5 Stars. 

 

December 3th: The Captain of the "Pole-Star" by Arthur Conan Doyle (from The Valancourt Book of Victorian Christmas Ghost Stories and Classic Ghost Stories)

 

I really enjoyed this story and I loved the setting(a whaling ship stuck in the polar region). It´s one of my favorite settings and it works wonderfully in this story. The captain is an intriguing character I would have liked to know more about and Conan Doyle is setting him up in a very mystical way. The fact that the story is told from the point of view of the ships doctor adds to the mystery, since he takes a rational approach to everything that is happening on the ship. A great example of Conan Doyles weird fiction. 4 Stars.    

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review 2017-11-26 01:09
Hysterical
The Stocking Was Hung - Tara Sivec

The Stocking Was Hung by Tara Sivec is a joyful holiday read.  Ms Sivec has delivered a well-written book and loaded it with a fantastic cast of quirky, fun characters.  Noel and Sam's story is loaded with humor, a little drama and plenty of sizzle.  Did I mention it's funny?  I laughed my way through this book.  I loved reading The Stocking Was Hung and look forward to reading more from Tara Sivec in the future.  The Stocking Was Hung is book 1 of The Holidays Series but can be read as a standalone.  This is a complete book, not a cliff-hanger.

 

I voluntarily read an Advance Reader Copy of this book that I received from Instafreebie.

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review 2017-11-25 16:36
Telling more than showing
The Breathless - Tara Goedjen

Big, gloomy house - check. A family going back generations - check. Secrets - check. A bit of the supernatural - check. If I were ticking off a list of elements for the making of a Gothic mystery, The Breathless certainly fits the bill. The author sets a scene that is haunting and dark as the story moves back and forth between present day and almost one hundred fifty years ago to the beginnings of Blue Gate and the Cole family. In present day, we have a group of teenagers struggling to deal with the loss of one gone way too soon, a father who has checked out on life, and a grandfather who knows far more than he is able to tell. In the past, we have the story of a young Grady Cole, delving into things better left alone to save those he loves. This spooky tale had the potential to be something unforgettable with mystery and the dark aspect of the supernatural. As our main character, Mae, digs into things best left buried, family secrets are revealed bit by bit. The uncovering of those secrets should’ve leant an air of suspense to the story, but it was a bit too easy to see where it was going. The biggest drawback for this reader was that the story quickly became repetitive and seemed to wander almost aimlessly at times, particularly in the modern day chapters. I also found some of the characters to be more nuisance than any benefit to the tale. For example, Mae’s sister, Elle, was irritating at best and while I kept expecting her to play some role in the storyline, I found no reason for her presence. The question of whether or not Mae’s actions would prove fruitful did keep me reading, but I found the story of Grady Cole and his forbidden love that started it all to be the most interesting parts of this tale and quickly began to look forward to those chapters. In the end, the author’s writing style of telling more than showing and the continual going over and over of the same information made this one a little too easy to set aside for later.

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review 2017-11-23 20:06
'Love in Laguna' has definitely been a hit and miss series for me...
Fool of Main Beach - Tara Lain

The first four books have garnered anything between 2 and even 5 stars as a rating from me.

'Fool of Main Beach' just had too many things that appealed to me, so when the chance came along to check out the audio book and the narrator was an 'almost' new to me narrator...K. C. Kelly, whom I've only heard narrate one other audio book. I decided I needed to go for it...so we're heading for Laguna Beach and the men who live there.

So let's start with what I love...

First off this is one of those series where we get a different couple for each book but we also get to re-visit the men from the previous books so the new and the familiar...one of my favorite things.

Dogs...lots and lots of dogs...come on we all know dogs make everything better and this one has dogs in spades.

Totally unlikely MCs...I love it when an author takes 2 characters who on paper are just never going to happen...they have nothing in common, their connection defies the obvious. 

Diverse and interesting secondary characters...this one has those in spades from the collection of acting industry people to Merle's family to Tom's family and let's not forget the men from the previous stories. 

Most of all I quickly discovered that what I loved the most about this book was Merle and Tom...but especially Tom. I'm not even sure how to explain Tom and all the feelz I have for him. Truly we would all be better people for having a Tom in our lives. Tom is sweet and honest....so guileless and absolutely so much more than he appeared to be. Tom would be the kind of friend that anyone with a brain would treasure and that any parent worthy of the name would cherish and be humbled for having played a part in gifting the world with.

Ok, let's move on to Merle because honestly I could probably wax poetic about Tom and why I love him all day but I think I've made my point Tom is awesome but in his own way so was Merle.

Merle is the star of a television show and he aspires to star in movies but more importantly Merle is at his heart an sweet and gentle soul looking for the right person to love him. It just takes him a bit of time to realize that finding the right person to love him means looking not at the package but at what lies inside...although it might not hurt that Tom is also very nicely packaged...he's big...as in tall with all kinds of lovely ripped muscles and the face of an angel and he thinks that Merle is so beautiful and talented. 

I loved that no matter where things were at between these two men if one of them needed help the other one dropped everything to get to them as soon as possible. I loved how Merle saw and never lost site of Tom...not the superficial that people saw at first glance but the man who saw the world just a little differently from others and whose honesty is both guileless and refreshing. 

Merle and Tom are in many ways as unlikely a pairing as a person could imagine and their story from when they are brought together when Tom first rescues Merle from an act of bigotry and hatred. As they become friends then friends with benefits continuing to rescue each other, Tom and Merle find their lives becoming increasingly entangled and yet in spite of the fact that both claim a relationship between them would never work, neither of them is willing to truly give up the other. 

I really enjoyed listening to this story on audio. K.C. Kelly's narration was well done and really added to my enjoyment of the characters and the story in general and easily ticked off those boxes in my 'things I look for from an audio book' list. 

'Fool of Main Beach' is a sweet, feel good, hurt/comfort romance that at times had me laughing and there may have been a tear or two as well and without a doubt this is one of my favorites from this series.


*************************

 

An audio book of 'Thief of Main Street' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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