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review 2019-10-21 07:16
Agnes Grey by Anne Brontë
Agnes Grey - Angeline Goreau,Anne Brontë

TITLE:  Agnes Grey


AUTHOR:  Anne Brontë



                                 [First Published 1847]



Agnes Grey is the touching story of a young girl who decides to enter the world as a governess, but whose bright illusions of acceptance, freedom and friendship are gradually destroyed.

Drawing on her own experience, Anne Brontë charts the development of gentle Agnes and sympathetically depicts the harsh treatment she receives along the way. Leaving her idyllic home and close-knit family, Agnes arrives at the Bloomfield’s residence, inside whose walls reign cruelty and neglect. Although faced with tyrannical children and over-indulgent parents, the generosity of spirit and warm candour learnt from her own family never desert her. Agnes also remains firm in the Murray household, where she is used by the two disdainful young daughters for their own deceitful ends and where her chances of happiness are almost spoiled for her.
A deeply moving account, Agnes Grey seriously discusses the contempt and inhumanity shown towards the poor though educated woman of the Victorian age, whose only resource was to become a governess.




Agnes Grey draws on Anne Brontë's experiences as a governess.  Anne wanted to write a novel that showed the many difficulties, indignities, and discriminations a governess faces while carrying her duties - with the purpose of reform in mind.  The novel is also something of a study of human behaviour and society, as well as relationships.  The families who Agnes works for make "The Addams Family" look tame and perfectly normal.  The plot is straight forward and the writing not too long-winded and verbose.  The prose is acutally quite beautiful.  This book comes across as quiet and peaceful without melodrama, but it still somehow draws the reader in.  Also, unlike many novels written in this time period, Agnes does not wait around for a man to marry her and "save" her.  She is capable of being independant and making her own decisions. 


This Penguin Classics edition has additional material including a chronology, an introduction (which deals with Brontë family dynamics and reviewer criticism), a bibliographical notice of Ellis and Acton Bell, notes and further reading.

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review 2019-07-20 23:08
Fact is...I like Andrew Grey...
Heart Untouched - Andrew Grey,Greg Tremblay

and when you add Greg Tremblay as the narrator to one of his stories what you get is several hours of listening enjoyment. Admittedly I think Mr. Tremblay could read a dictionary and make it sound like one of the best stories you've heard in a long time...I kid you not and I'm sure that several of my friends who like audio books would back me up on that statement. The man is just that damned good.


I've read quite a few books by Andrew Grey and now I'm quite enjoying myself by working my way through the titles that are being released on audio...so opportunity knocked and like the good little audio book enthusiast that I've become of course I answered the door. 


'Heart Untouched' is book #3 in the 'Hearts Entwined' series and we've met both Duncan and Todd in previous stories as minor characters but now it's their turn to make a grab for the brass ring. Duncan's trying to get his life back on track after a sporting accident that's left him confined to a wheelchair...his dreams of Olympic gold are now dust in the wind, while Todd's still chasing that dream he's also got another dream that he's not willing to give up and that's a dream of having more than just friendship with Duncan, but he also wants to help his friend find a new direction for his life one that helps him to use what Todd knows is a hella' creative mind.


The relationship between Duncan and Todd was my absolute favorite thing about this story. I loved the bond of friendship that they started with and that Todd was so determined to help Duncan and how he was doing this. He never tried to tell Duncan what he had to do but he was supportive and encouraging of the fact that he believed in Duncan and that he had the ability to do whatever it was that he set his mind to. Todd's patience and persistence in his efforts to make Duncan see that he loved Duncan spoke volumes to the strength of both his love and their friendship. 


The conflict and tension in this story was essentially created by Duncan's problem with a former friend and problems that were created for Todd by the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) and this was the part of the story that allowed us to once again see how the men at the garage come together as family to care and protect each other. 


'Heart Untouched' is a light and enjoyable read/listen with a solid story to it and while it's not as emotional or intense as some books for me it fulfills it's goal which is to read/listen to a story has entertained me and leaves me feeling good...mission accomplished.



An audio  book of 'Heart Untouched' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2019-07-07 20:28
All for You by Andrew Grey
All For You - Andrew Grey

Another dip into the romance genre gets so-so results. 'All for You' starts with Reggie relaxing with his friends in a bar, glad to be away from his new job and the small town its in, if only for one night. As the friends reminisce and tease each other, Reggie notices a nervous young man - clearly new to the gay scene - getting intimidated by an older, drunken man. Reggie comes to rescue and hangs out with Willy for the evening, but gently declines going further. It seems to much like taking advantage.


Reggie is in his early thirties and has been hired as sheriff to reform the police department in small, conservative Sierra Pines. A routine arrest of a show-boating teenager - who happens to be the mayor's son - brings him under the scrutiny of the local reverend, who is used to getting his own way. It turns out that WIlly is that reverend's son. Uh-oh.


For good reasons Reggie doesn't want to get involved with anyone in town and has, without telling any lies, kept his being gay a secret. Willy seems pretty eager to get him to break the rules, however.


The novel has an accelerated timeline - two or three weeks, tops - and this is a sweet romance of two people falling head-over-heels. I know this is the genre, but it all seemed a little too perfect, and too fast, to be completely satisfying. Sex written down is ridiculous no matter what you do (prove me wrong kids - prove me wrong!), so I didn't find much fault there. The supporting cast was fairly weak, Willy's mother and boss being the only ones who have more than one significant scene, and there's a little bit of police-action thrown in at the end for color, but it doesn't land.


I'll keep trying, its a genre I'd like to promote more.

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review 2019-06-11 13:57
The Earl Next Door (First Comes Love #1) - Amelia Grey

This one had its moments of great fun and passion. I did find the pacing a bit slow and I don’t like that it took her getting pregnant to realize  that Lyon wasn’t her dead husband and that he could make her happy. She kept saying she loved him, but it wasn’t enough until she was pregnant. Other than that, it was an enjoyable story and I am glad he stuck to his demands that they marry rather than continue an affair. The concept was good, I liked the aunt and the kids, they added to the enjoyment of the story. I wish that the story moved along at a faster pace, and there really wasn’t a villain and no dire conflicts in this one, which might have added in how slow I thought it was.

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review 2019-05-29 02:04
It's a light romance based on...
Fire and Agate (Carlisle Deputies #3) - Greg Tremblay,Andrew Grey

a fairly heavy topic...human trafficking...


Pavle Kasun has held hostage for four years. He's been kept locked in a room, used as a sex toy for some pretty sick people. Tortured, abused and frequently deprived of the basic necessities of life. Pavle is also a survivor it was through his own determination and ingenuity that he finally escaped and now he's found himself in a prison of a different kind as his life is threatened by the people from the human trafficking ring that he can identify. 


After more than one security breach Pavle's alternative measures are taken to ensure Pavle's security and he's placed in the care of deputy sheriff Chris Anducci. So this is the point at which I'm going to say if you want to enjoy this story it's probably best to suspend your sense of disbelief because there are a lot of things that will at the very least have you raising an eyebrow...once or twice or possibly more and that's about all that I'm going to cover about that. Sure I could go through and make a list starting with the fact that the whole issue of how Pavle's protective custody is questionable at best, that Chris's mom conveniently spoke Pavle's native tongue...mmm...sorry but that's a bit to coincidental and on and on but in spite of these things I enjoyed this one...maybe not quite as much as the previous books but still it was enjoyable. 


I totally tossed my sense of disbelief out the window on this one. I was in the mood for a sweet romance. I liked Pavle he was a sweet, soft spoken man and I lived that when he needed to he stood up for himself and while Chris's primary objective was to keep Pavle safe, he tried to do so while still being respectful of Pavle as an individual and also trying to allow him as much freedom as he was able to. It didn't always go well but sometimes the best laid plans and all that.


I enjoyed the idea of Pavle, someone who had been victimized but refused to remain the victim but at the same time he was also someone who was kind, gentle, soft spoken but able to quietly and firmly stand up for themselves. Pavle was a character that I liked. Someone I could see myself sitting down with and talking with them over a cup of coffee or tea and some homemade cookies...yep I'd totally make Pavle some cookies and Chris I adored that he loved and respected his grandmother and that he appreciated having such a wonderful strong woman in him life.


The hardest thing for me and what kept me from enjoying this story far more than I did was the relationship issue first that even with suspended belief the fact that in spite of what he'd been through for the past 4 years Pavle was the one who pushed for the relationship between him and Chris to progress. He just fell a little to easily and readily into the relationship. I can understand Pavle developing feelings for Chris considering that Chris is the first man that he's met in over 4 years who seemed to genuinely care about him. I just would have found it easier ot believe if we'd seen some kind of internal struggle with his feelings from Pavle rather than this sudden overwhelming love that neither man seemed to be able to resist...even my suspended beliefs will only stretch so far and it didn't quite reach the necessary suspension level for this. It was however, tempered by the fact that I could see Chris as the type of person who Pavle would ultimately be able to have a relationship with so, while it maybe happened a little to fast for my sensibilities it wasn't an impossibility. 


Greg Tremblay was the narrator for this story and as always Mr. Tremblay did a awesome job with the narration and as with the previous stories in this series he gave the characters depth and emotion as well as providing the familiar voices of characters from previous stories. However, I do have to admit for me there was a tiny bit of disappointment with the voice of Chris's grandmother, having grown up in a community that was predominantly populated by European immigrants from Poland, Hungary, Germany, Belgium, the Ukraine, etc. I grew up hearing those accents on a daily basis and when Chris's grandma talked for me the accent resonated more as being Asian than European and maybe that was me but more importantly whoever the voice and whatever the accent they retained their unique sound and I never had an issue identifying who was speaking and for me that's the more important factor.



An audio book of 'Fire & Agate' was graciously provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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