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text 2017-09-14 16:43
Halloween Bingo 2017 - Terrifying Women
We Have Always Lived in the Castle - Shirley Jackson

Oh this was good. So very, very good.

 

Unreliable narrators are one of my favourite literary conventions. And Merricat Blackwood is more unreliable than most.

 

Is she a fey princess living on the moon with unicorns and flying horses, or is she a complete sociopath dreaming that people will die horribly and leave her and her beloved sister in peace?

 

Read it and find out.

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text 2017-09-13 18:31
Halloween Bingo 2017 - Terrifying Women
We Have Always Lived in the Castle - Shirley Jackson

I'm only 6% in, nothing has happened, and I'm already feeling very unsettled.

 

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review 2017-09-10 22:39
The Women in the Castle - Jessica Shattuck

A terrific book told from the point of view of three German women and set throughout the Second World War through to 1991. Beautifully written, with fabulous imagery and a great sense of intimacy. I wasn't quite sure the world needed another book on this subject, especially not after reading Hans Fallada's astonishing ALL MEN DIE ALONE recently, but this feels surprisingly fresh. Powerlessness, conviction, fortitude, and guilt... all are explored with a clear-eyed (dare I say Germanic) sensibility. 

The end of the book dangles ever so slightly, which is understandable given that the peace-time aspect of the narrative can't possibly have the drama of the war-passages, and perhaps it is ever-so-slightly too neat, but overall the book is satisfying.

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text 2017-09-06 11:24
Halloween Bingo - Gothic
The Castle of Otranto - Horace Walpole

I started The Castle of Otranto this morning as my current audiobook for the commute to work. 

 

I'm only a few minutes in, and I get the impression that I could not have picked a book that is more Gothic than this one. There have already been ample "in vains", trembling ladies, manly pursuits, " 'tis", "thou", a castle, fearful ladies, terrible aristocrats, poor peasants, necromancy, a tomb, and what appears to be a version of the Black Knight.

 

...oh, and there has also been a mysterious death by helmet. 

 

 

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review 2017-09-05 03:32
Quick Thoughts: Canyons of Night
Canyons of Night (Arcane Society,#12)(Harmony, #8)(Looking Glass Trilogy,#3) - Jayne Castle

Canyons of Night
by Jayne Castle
Book 8 of Harmony
-- Book 12 of Arcane Society
-- Book 3 (final) of Looking Glass Trilogy
-- Book 0 of Rainshadow

 

 

Charlotte Enright, owner of a small antiques shop called Looking Glass Antiques on Rainshadow Island, and Slade Attridge, the community's new chief of police, both have something in common: they possess strong paranormal talents.

They met several years ago when they were in their teens spending the summer on the island.  Slade saved Charlotte from a gang of drunken toughs, but then at the end of the summer Slade and Charlotte went their separate ways and started their adult lives.

Now, fifteen years later, they have both been drawn back to Rainshadow Island.  They will discover the adult passion they have for each other and start to explore some of the mysteries of the forbidden section of the island known only as the Preserve.



Canyons of Night rounds out the Looking Glass sub-trilogy of the long-running Arcane Society series.  I assume this is also the last book in the Arcane series, though it's usually hard to tell with long-running series like this.  Nonetheless, it is also an introductory story into a new chapter of the Harmony series, called Rainshadow--we already get to see a little bit of what Rainshadow is all about, starting with the island and the Preserve situated on the island.

I look forward to the rest of the Rainshadow installments, if only because it seems like it'll be an intriguing new development to the futuristic series.

As a JAK novel, of course, this book is highly enjoyable during the reading.  The characters are great, and the community mirrors that of a small town in the U.S., with everyone knowing everyone's business, and all the people on Rainshadow Island kind of policing themselves.

Our main male and female MCs are good people, although they don't really stand out all that much, and I really hate to admit that even Slade's dust bunny companion, Rex, seems a bit flat as well.  I liked that we've kind of returned back to a semi-murder mystery type of story, and have sort of veered off from the ongoing "band of rogue psychics" conspiracy that has been happening in the Arcane parts of the connecting series.

Harmony is a series separate from Arcane after all, even if there are some intersecting story lines, with references from historical, to contemporary, to futuristic.  I always find the references to 21st century Earth as a "point in history" kind of amusing.

Meanwhile, aside from some more references to glass light energy, the words 'looking glass', and Mrs. Bridewell's clockwork curiosities being used as psi-weapons, I'm honestly not sure that these past three books really needed to be connected as a trilogy.

If there were one (or two) things I'd like to see more of in this series, it would be more insight into the alien civilization that has vanished, maybe some introductions to more alien beasts than just the dust bunnies.  It seems hard to reconcile that all alien live save for dust bunnies have somehow gone extinct.

I would have also have liked to see and learn more about the Bridewell clockwork curiosities, and feel as if the Quicksilver mirror, or glass light energy is more significant than it's kind of being made out to be.  The previous sub-trilogy was all about the dreamlight, but glass light is only barely touched upon in the contemporary and now the futuristic novels of this trilogy--really, only the historical part of the trilogy gave glass light more than just a passing thought.

Otherwise, like I've said before, JAK novels are always entertaining and easy to breeze right through.


***

 

Halloween Bingo 2017

 

 

Source: anicheungbookabyss.blogspot.com/2017/09/quick-thoughts-canyons-of-night.html
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