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review 2019-11-14 17:58
Southside Collection
The Hustle of Kim Foxx - Steve Bogira
Cellmates - Tori Marlan
The Waiting Room - Nicole Gonzalez Van Cleve
The Gun King - John H. Richardson
Payback - Natalie Y. Moor

This is a series of 5 articles/essays about the Southside in Chicago, or to be on point crime, justice and race in Chicago.  They are by five different authors so somewhat mixed.


The Waiting Room is most likely the most moving as it deals with the presence of a jail in the neighborhood as well as the impact of jail on the lives of people.  It is more thoughtful and deep than The Gun King, which is about a young man sent to jail for dealing guns.  Gun King does raise legit questions but it needed to be a bit longer.


The profile of Kim Foxx is good and in depth.

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text 2019-09-02 16:47
My currently reading stack!
Speaks the Nightbird - Robert R. McCammon
The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
Shadow over the Fens - Joy Ellis
The Moor - Laurie R. King

I am into Halloween bingo big time and reading three four books all at once!


I'm still working my way through Speaks the Nightbird - it is a doorstopper for sure. Very much a mystery, as well as having the witchy elements. I am reading for Spellbound.


In preparation for the release of The Testaments by Margaret Atwood, which I have already pre-ordered and will be reading for New Release, I am re-reading The Handmaid's Tale. Margaret Atwoods distant, unemotional rendering of what is truly a horror story is so compelling. This takes care of Film at 11 for me.


Finally, I have dipped my toe into Nikki Galena by Joy Ellis. It's not Jackman and Evans, and the first book had some significant issues, but I can hear the echoes of all of the things that I loved about Jackman and Evans and the setting on the Fens remains as wonderfully brooding and isolating as ever. I am reading these books, because they aren't narrated by Richard Armitage. Joy Ellis is British, and lives in Lincolnshire, so I am using this for International Woman of Mystery.


Oh, and I almost forgot - since I've finished all of my Jackman and Evans audiobooks (sad face), I'm listening to an autumnal favorite, The Moor by Laurie R. King, the 5th in the Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes series. That one doesn't really fit into any of my categories, so I will either use it for the Free space, or I'll just reserve it for the full list of categories that I've created. 


I do want to blackout my card, so I'm inclined not to embark on reading for categories that aren't on my card until I'm finished with my actual card. There are just so many fantastic squares that this is hard!


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text 2019-08-11 15:45
Day 11 Bring on the Horror
Dracula's Guest and Other Weird Tales - Bram Stoker,Kate Hebblethwaite
Dead Sea - Tim Curran
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories - H.P. Lovecraft,S.T. Joshi
Frankenstein - Mary Shelley,Maurice Hindle
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Other Tales of Terror - Robert Louis Stevenson,Robert Mighall
The Cold - Rich Hawkins
Ghost Story - Jeff Brackett
High Moor - Graeme Reynolds
Letters To The Damned - Austin Crawley

Ooooh, where do I start on this?


I like certain types of Horror. I've talked about it here before so I'll keep the recap brief, I don't like serial killers or blood and guts stuff but I'm perfectly fine with messy werewolves and other monsters.


I love anything psychic or occult, ghost stories, good werewolf or other monsters, including plants. I like something that makes me think. Weirdness can be good as long as it's not too confusing.


Strange, alternate dimension creatures are good too.


I used to love vampire stories, but Twilight and the Romance genre spoiled that. I find a few exceptions still worth reading.


I find most of the Horror Classics are very good. Original concepts like a haunted post box definitely get my attention (that was a good one BTW).


There's a lot of great stuff in the Horror genre. I lean towards the more literary stuff over the sensationalist in general.

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text 2019-08-07 16:25
Favorite Halloween Bingo Authors
It Was a Dark and Stormy Night, Snoopy - Charles M. Schulz
SLEEPY HOLLOW: Rise Headless and Ride (Jason Crane) - Richard Gleaves
Faerie Tale: A Novel of Terror and Fantasy - Raymond E. Feist
A Christmas Tale - Austin Crawley
White Lies - Jeremy Bates
The Elementals - Michael Rowe,Michael McDowell
The Moonspinners - Mary Stewart
The Magic Cottage - James Herbert
High Moor - Graeme Reynolds
Dead Sea - Tim Curran

This is kind of repetitive from favourite books of past Bingos but these are some of the authors I either discovered as a result of Halloween Bingo or watch for possible new books for the next Bingo.


No doubt I'll be discovering more new ones from trying to fill whatever squares I get. :D

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review 2019-08-06 20:36
Silent on the Moor / Deanna Raybourn
Silent on the Moor - Deanna Raybourn

In Grimsgrave Hall, enigmatic Nicholas Brisbane has inherited a ruined estate, replete with uncanny tenants and one unwanted houseguest: Lady Julia Grey. Despite his admonitions to stay away, Lady Julia arrives in Yorkshire to find Brisbane as remote and maddeningly attractive as ever. Cloistered together, they share the moldering house with the proud but impoverished remnants of an ancient family: the sort that keeps their bloodline pure and their secrets close. Lady Allenby and her daughters, dependent upon Brisbane and devastated by their fall in society, seem adrift on the moor winds, powerless to change their fortunes. But poison does not discriminate between classes.... A mystery unfolds from the rotten heart of Grimsgrave, one Lady Julia may have to solve alone, as Brisbane appears inextricably tangled in its heinous twists and turns. But blood will out, and before spring touches the craggy northern landscape, Lady Julia will have uncovered a Gypsy witch, a dark rider, and a long-buried legacy of malevolence and evil. Deanna Raybourn spins a gripping tale of loyalty and lust, set against the wild beauty of the Yorkshire moors.

I had to order this book through interlibrary loan, but I am glad that I did. I read all 465 pages in one day--I really didn’t want to set the book down. Raybourn writes a really good Gothic murder mystery/romance. 

Lady Julia Grey is part of that movement that I sense in fiction right now to feminize the story of Victorian times. The role of women was definitely undergoing change during this time period, what with Margaret Sanger’s championing of women’s rights and birth control, plus the Rational Dress and the women’s suffrage movements. Upper class women’s desires to be able to move, to not be subject to restrictive social mores, and to control their own bodies. What must it have been like to have all your choices subject to parents or brothers? 

Julia is a very sympathetic character to the modern female reader. We identify with her desire to pursue what she wants (Brisbane) without having to answer to her stuffy eldest brother. She is fortunate to have a father who is willing to aid and abet. I was also glad to see that Raybourn spreads the restrictions around, writing Julia’s brother Valerius as a frustrated medical doctor. Gentlemen aren’t allowed to “practice trade,” preventing Valerius from becoming what he is meant to be and showing that even men were hemmed in by the social contract of the time.

I’m disappointed that I will once again have to specially request the next volume of this series through interlibrary loan. Plus, I am unsure where Raybourn will be able to take it after the conclusion of this installment, but I am willing to give it a try.

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