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review 2020-08-15 15:59
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
The Shadow of the Wind - Lucia Graves,Carlos Ruiz Zafón

For me, this story didn't really start for me until almost 40%. This is one of those books that you have to keep reading to get the whole thing. Once the pieces fall in place, it is captivating and rich in literature. There were a couple of moments that I wanted to quit. I couldnt figure out where the story was taking me. It was in so many places, with so many people, it got hard to keep up. I never read a book so slowly, and reread lines so many times in my life. I was absorbing it all. Every word. As I finish the book, I am so happy I stuck with it. You really have no idea what a literal genius someone is till the end. You finish that last page and say holy crap! Daniel is on a mission throughout this story. All the while what he is looking for is right before his eyes. You don't see it either though, that is what's so incredible. I definitely had so many emotions once this book came together. My heart was in turmoil. for Daniel and for Julian. A pretty epic read, have to admit. I definitely want more from this author.

Source: www.fredasvoice.com/2020/08/the-shadow-of-wind-by-carlos-ruiz-zafon.html
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review 2019-12-16 01:16
If I told you that bar none this was absolutely the best audio book I've listened to all year, would ya' hear me dear?
Heartsong - By (author) TJ Klune,Kirt Graves
If I said that this was my favorite book in this series...so far...would ya' hear me dear?

I'm not going to do a big long fangirl review for this one...or at least I'm going to try not to.

Originally I was going to wait for 'Brothersong' to be released before tackling this one but when I was scrolling through my audiobook library a few days ago I saw 'Wolfsong' then I saw 'Ravensong' and I knew I had 'Heartsong' and that was all it took. I put on my earbuds and it took my hubby all of 5 minutes to figure out that he'd lost me for as long as it would take...thank heavens the man knows how to cook, I mean really somebody had to feed me.

'Heartsong' was absolutely superb. I've liked Robbie since the beginning and with this book we're given his story and we get to know Kelly better as well and surprisingly while Kelly's always been sort of a neither here nor there character for me...I am now head over heels in love with him. Yep, more than Ox or Joe or Mark or Gordo...I adore Kelly. Until now there really hasn't been a lot of Kelly time in the stories, but here in 'Heartsong' he shines. We see his gentle nature, his strength, the depth of his love and just all that he is.

In spite of the fact that the initial chapters resulted in a bit of confusion for me, by the end of it all things not only made sense, but I'm pretty sure that even if I could have I wouldn't have wanted anything to be done any differently. Robbie and Kelly broke my heart with all that they went through to be together and to find their way back to each other so yes, I cried...at times I cried my freakin' heart out and I laughed...there were times that I laughed so much that bathroom breaks were essential.

As for the narration in this book...I'm not sure what else I can say other than "Once again Kirt Graves has done a superb job of narrating a superb story."

You truly can't read or listen to this book on audio without benefit of 'Wolfsong' and 'Ravensong', I think the one thing that all of these books have in common is the incredible, emotional journey they'll take you on.

I really haven't read a lot of shifter books and the ones that I've read and loved are even fewer and even fewer still are the ones that I've read and/or listened to the audio and known at the end that not only would I do it again, but I will be doing it again, if I had a shelf for these books...the only books on that shelf would be TJ Klune's 'Green Creek' series.
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review 2019-12-04 23:51
The Twelve Caesars
The Twelve Caesars - Suetonius,Michael Grant,Robert Graves

For the past two millennia Caesar has denoted the absolute ruler of an empire, a legacy of one man who ruled Rome and the men who succeeded him and used his name.  The Twelve Caesars by Suetonius gives biographical sketches of the men who ruled the Western world for a century and a half, from the end of the Republic to the death of Domitian.

 

Each of Suetonius’ biographies follow the similar pattern in which the individual’s heritage, political-military career, private lives, personal habits, and physical appearance.  Though the pattern is the same, Suetonius’ style is to slowly weave in elements of one section into another—except for physical appearance—thus not breaking a nice flow for the reader.  As the main source of Caligula (Gaius in the text), Claudius, and Vespasian’s family history, Suetonius not only adds on top of Tacitus but covers what was lost from his contemporary’s works.  Yet unlike Tacitus, gossip and innuendo features a lot in the work making this book a little bit racy compared to Suetonius’ contemporary.

 

The translation by Robert Graves—of I, Claudius fame—was wonderfully done and did a lot to give the text a great flow.  Of Suetonius’ text the overwhelming use of portents and omens was a bit too much at times, though given the time period of the historian’s life this superstitious view was a part of everyday life.

 

The Twelve Caesars gives another view of the men who ruled the Western world.  Suetonius’ writing style and subject matter contrast with Tacitus but only for the better for the reader of both who get a full picture of the individuals the two contemporary historians cover.

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review 2019-10-25 00:05
Graves
Graves - Quentin S. Crisp

This book shook me to my core, and has definitely become one of my favorites. It's brimming with intelligent writing and perfectly Gothic flowery language. Crisp's imagery is deeply affecting, with artful descriptions of decay. There is one passage where he describes the putrefaction of a corpse, and another where he describes a peacefully dusty kind of decay. There's really an enjoyable amount of death/decay exploration throughout the novel, with imagery appealing to every sense.

 

I found Damien's thoughts on death-in-life and life-in-death very interesting. There was a really great monologue on page 68:

"...so nothing leaves the body. There is only matter. Therefore, if a living body and a dead body are not made different by any magic ingredients, they are the same thing, just like a clockwork toy that is moving is exactly the same as a clockwork toy whose spring has wound down. And therefore, it is not only possible to be dead and living at the same time, but that is unavoidably what we all are. The only thing 'living' can possibly mean is that dead matter moves in a particular way. So living is only something built on top of being dead, or is only a subset of being dead. We are all dead and alive at the same time."

Actually, this book posits a lot of thought-provoking questions, like "Why must we survive? We are we trying to kill ourselves?" As the synopsis says, it confronts the problem of consciousness, but also of the soul and free will. The big questions, basically.

 

I loved the inclusion of references to dark art and music. Pieces I especially liked were The Old Man and Death (1779) by Joseph Wright, Skeletons Trying to Warm Themselves (1889) by James Ensor, and "Wandering Star" by Portishead.

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text 2019-10-23 18:18
Reading progress update: I've read 211 out of 286 pages.
Graves - Quentin S. Crisp
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