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review 2018-01-21 21:31
Revenger (John Shakespeare #2) by Rory Clements
Revenger: A Novel of Tudor Intrigue - Rory Clements

I fell asleep reading this last night. I woke up this morning determined to finish before the Vikings play. SKOL! 


I have seen so many different books toted as comparable to C.J. Sansom's Matthew Shardlake books. More often than not, I find myself disappointed. Truth be told, I have not yet found anything to be as dark, gritty, or politically charged as the Shardlake novels. Enter John Shakespeare. 


Shakespeare and Shardlake both have similar qualities. They are both slightly naive. They both tend to find themselves being used as pawns in someone's political schemes. The biggest different between the two men, Shakespeare is a more of a rogue. While Shardlake strives to use his brains to get himself out of trouble, Shakespeare is not afraid to fight. 


I will confess to liking Shardlake just a little more than Shakespeare. However, I am only two books in to Shakespeare. Things could change. If the second novel is any indication of how things will progress, that could very well be the case.


Much like the first, this book was dark. It was gritty. It was gruesome. It was thick with political schemes. If you are not familiar with Elizabeth's England post-Walsingham or the children of Lettice Knollys, I would highly recommend doing a little background research first. Otherwise, you may find yourself a little lost. 


Easily the most fascinating part of this book was the story of Roanoke. As a child, I was taught all about the mysterious colony of Roanoke. A colony of English settlers come to the New World to create a new life who suddenly vanish without a trace. What happened to little Virginia Dare and the other colonists? Did a mysterious illness overtake them? Did they run foul of the natives? Did they just leave and start a life somewhere else? This book presents an entirely different theory. It's actually quite fascinating. That's all I'm saying about it. 


I would love to start the third novel but the Vikings play today. I have Super Bowl on my mind. SKOL! 




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text 2018-01-16 21:45
Reading progress update: I've read 15%.
Three Maids for a Crown: A Novel of the Grey Sisters - Ella March Chase

I'm giving this book another chapter before I decide whether or not to keep reading. This author clearly subscribes to the theory that the Duke and Duchess of Suffolk were horrid people who didn't love any of their children. That much was made obvious three sentences in. No need to continue to beat the reader over the head with it. 

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review 2018-01-10 02:57
Less than thrilling
The Chalk Man - C.J. Tudor

After reading the blurb for The Chalk Man, I was hoping for a creepy and engrossing read. The prologue does have that element, but it quickly went downhill from there. The story is rather dry and the pacing is extremely slow, to the point that it almost drags much of the time. So much of the book is dedicated to character and location descriptions that I found myself quite a ways in and still wondering when the suspense would actually start. I could have been okay with some character description had there been any characters that were likable enough to make me want to know more about them, but that wasn’t the case. By the time Eddie and company finally found the body, there wasn’t much in the way of suspense as the conclusion was way too easy to guess. The biggest issue for this reader is the complete suspension of belief required for this tale. One example is our narrator, Eddie, telling the story by going back and forth between 2016 and 1986. The changes in tense were a minor irritation, but the thing that had this reader’s eyes rolling was the sheer number of details that Eddie was able to recall after thirty years. Major events are one thing, but to remember lengthy conversations and even what people were wearing on any given day is a big stretch. Then, as the story slowly progresses, it isn’t just about the murder of one girl. There are several little side mysteries to be solved, each with their own little twist. Sadly, as these revelations trickled in, they really weren’t all that surprising and made the conclusion more convoluted than anything else. I actually set this one aside several times, but I did finally finish the book, more out of a mild curiosity to see if I was right than anything else.  In the end, I found myself disappointed in this not so thrilling thriller, and I can’t say that it’s one I would recommend. 

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text 2018-01-09 14:08
Life in the time of Mary I

I am a guest of Mary Anne Yarde today with a look at life during the mid-16th century. Mary's day was much different than that of those she reigned over!


Source: maryanneyarde.blogspot.co.uk/2018/01/life-in-time-of-queen-mary-i-by.html
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text 2018-01-08 13:17
Reginald Pole and the Papal Conclave of 1550

Did you know that Reginald almost became pope?




Source: samanthawilcoxson.blogspot.com/2018/01/reginald-pole-and-papal-conclave-of-1550.html
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