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review 2019-01-10 02:18
Book Review: Elisabeth
Elisabeth: The Princess Bride, Austria - Hungary, 1853 - Barry Denenberg

Title: Elisabeth: The Princess Bride
Author: Barry Denenberg
Series: Royal Diaries
Format: Hardcover
Length: 151 pages

 

Synopsis: Author Barry Denenberg brings us into the whirlwind that is the life of Princess Elisabeth of Austria. A free and impetuous spirit, Elisabeth is chosen at the age of fifteen (over her older sister) to be the wife of Franz Joseph, Emperor of Austria. From that moment on, she is thrown into an intimidating world of restrictions and tremendous responsibilities. Feeling lonely and alienated, Elisabeth is forced to rely upon her own personal strength, which eventually leads her down the aisle and into an uncertain future.

 

Favourite character: Elisabeth
Least favourite character: Aunt Sophie
Favourite line: N/A

 

Mini-Review: I loved how at the end, the last 1/2 to 3/4 of the book was historical notes about the real Elisabeth, with pictures of her and her husband, other family members. I loved finding out that her husband’s nephew and heir was the Ferdinand who was assassinated and basically started World War I.

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review 2018-12-21 21:32
Star Dust (Fly Me to the Moon #1) by Emma Barry and Genevieve Turner
Star Dust (Fly Me to the Moon, Book One) - Genevieve Turner,Emma Barry

*sigh* This book had such potential, but was weak limp noodle of a story. I shouldn't have been so excited to read a historical romance by two contemporary romance authors, but SPACE RACE ROMANCE was just something I couldn't resist. I didn't like the heroine and felt neutral about the hero and their chemistry just wasn't there but hey they had great sex so of course he fell in love. I think the heroine was tired of being a divorcee and having to work to support herself and the kids, so she was willing to marry again so quickly. She was also a judgmental scold with everyone she met, especially other women. The world building could've used more period pieces to make you feel you are in the time period; instead, it felt like a contemporary heroine wearing vintage clothing and having a contemporary romance. It just failed for me and I am bowing out on reading the rest of the series.

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review 2018-12-10 05:51
Days Without End (Audiobook)
Days Without End - Sebastian Barry,Aidan A. Kelly

Narration: 5 stars

Story: 3.5 stars

Final rating: 4 stars

 

It was my week for strange stories. This isn't even a story in the traditional sense. This reads more like a rambling memoir but with language so intimate and lush that I could easily forget that I was only really getting broad brushstrokes for the bulk of the story. This is mostly a summation of a young man's life as he figures out some hard-won truths.

 

Told from the POV of Thomas McNulty, an Irish immigrant, as we follow him and his friend turned lover John Cole across America in the mid-1800s. Survivors of the famine, they come to America with nothing, practically starved to death, and start to figure out how to survive from one day to the next, whether that's playacting as girls in a stage show or joining the Army to fight in the Indian Wars and eventually the Civil War.

 

This book doesn't shy away from the harsh reality of this time period in American history, nor does it give us safely and comfortably progressive-minded MCs to filter that reality through. Thomas and John Cole might not be outright hateful of anyone but they don't stop to ask why they're being given the orders they're given nor do they spend much time if any contemplating the morality of the slaughter of the First Peoples. Not at first. As Thomas notes at one point, no soldier fully understands the war he fights in; he only knows his one part in it. 

 

I was most interested in Thomas's and John's non-Army days, while they were living together and eventually with their adopted daughter Winona, a Sioux orphan, but those parts were sparse safe harbors in between all the violence and war of those times. The ending, such as it was, is more open-ended than anything else. 

I would have preferred a reunion between Thomas, John and Winona instead of just Thomas looking forward to it.

(spoiler show)

 

The narration by Aiden Kelly was truly amazing. He captures Thomas's bewildered voice perfectly and truly makes this oddly mesmerizing story come to life. 

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text 2018-11-25 19:22
24 Festive Tasks, Door 11 - Russian Mother's Day
Star Dust (Fly Me to the Moon, Book One) - Genevieve Turner,Emma Barry

Russian Mother's Day

 

Book: I chose Star Dust (Fly Me to the Moon #1) by Emma Barry and Genevieve Turner. The heroine is a single mom of two kids.

 

Task #1

The mother of all writerly sins would be telling not showing, especially in romance. If the author keeps telling the reader that the couple is falling in love, but the reader doesn't see one example of that love and trusting building, then the romance fails. I want to look back on a book and remember scenes of action, conversation, and progress in the relationship, not paragraphs of the heroine or hero thinking to themselves that they are falling in love or having a side character say they are falling in love.

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text 2018-10-31 22:20
October Re-Cap
Alice - Christina Henry
Evertrue - Brodi Ashton
An Anonymous Girl - Greer Hendricks,Sarah Pekkanen
Winterblaze - Kristen Callihan
Archangel's Consort - Nalini Singh
Wayward - Blake Crouch
Pack - Mike Bockoven
The Last Town - Blake Crouch
When We Caught Fire - Anna Godbersen
I Hunt Killers - Barry Lyga

 

Happy Halloween, sitting here...and not getting a single trick or treater, we never have since I lived here (busy road). 

 

I finished fewer books this month than I have with previous months, but I didn't too bad with 13.  I also managed to pull off a black-out on Halloween Bingo.  So yay me.  Again, most of my read books are technically Audiobooks, so hey, what can I say?  I really like them.  I had some decent books for the month, but I'm still feeling disappointed by The Darkest Star...I was really excited about it when I got approved for it on Netgalley.

 

 

 

 

(Audiobook) Alice by Christina Henry

Finish Date:  10/01/18

3.5STARS - GRADE=B-

 

(Audiobook) Evertrue by Brodi Ashton

Finish Date:  10/04

3.5STARS - GRADE=B-

 

(Netgalley eARC) An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen

Finish Date:  10/08

4.5STARS - GRADE=A-

 

(Audiobook) Winterblaze by Kristen Callihan

Finish Date:  10/09

4STARS - GRADE=B

 

(Audiobook) Archangel's Consort by Nalini Singh

Finish Date:  10/11

3.5STARS - GRADE=B-

 

(Audiobook) Wayward by Blake Crouch

Finish Date:  10/13

4.7STARS - GRADE=A

 

(Audiobook) Pack by Mike Bockoven

Finish Date:  10/15

3.3STARS - GRADE=B-

 

(Audiobook) The Last Town by Blake Crouch

Finish Date:  10/16

4.7STARS - GRADE=A

 

(Audiobook) When We Caught Fire by Anna Godbersen

Finish Date:  10/19

4.2STARS - GRADE=B+

 

(Audiobook) I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga

Finish Date:  10/22

4.7STARS - GRADE=A

 

(Audiobook) Seeds of Iniquity by JA Redmerski

Finish Date:  10/23

4STARS - GRADE=B+

 

(Netgalley eARC) The Darkest Star by Jennifer L Armentrout

Finish Date:  10/27

2.7STARS - GRADE=C-

 

(Audiobook) Give the Dark My Love by Beth Revis

Finish Date:  10/29

4.2STARS - GRADE=B+

 

11 Audiobooks and 2 eARC's and I also, unfortunately, had one DNF...

 

 

 

My choice for the best cover of the month is...a tie between these two covers:

 

 

and...

 

 

 

 

 

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