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review 2018-05-16 02:04
Danger at Dahlkari
Danger at Dahlkari - Edwina Marlow

This was sooooo good! It reminded me so much of some of Mary Stewart's stories. I've been looking for an author with a similar style for a while now and I finally found one! : ) I can't wait to read some of Marlow's other books. The author writes under a million pen names so I should have plenty to choose from. Lol

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review 2018-05-15 03:33
Black Rainbow
Black Rainbow - Barbara Michaels

This book seemed interesting in the beginning but then it seemed to drag on and on. I'm glad I finally read this so I can move it out of the house and make room for better books.

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text 2018-05-05 12:38
Reading progress update: I've read 47%.
The Broken Girls - Simone St. James

The audio narrator is doing a nice job of reflecting the haunting eerie atmosphere that Simone has a knack for creating.


Also I'm dying to know Mary Hand's backstory! 

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review 2018-04-25 15:59
Slow Moving Book That Doesn't Deliver
The Distant Hours - Kate Morton

I kind of laugh at this book being marketed as Gothic. It's really not. I mean there's an old castle, but the book itself is so far from Gothic it's not even funny. This is a slow moving book that doesn't pick up any speed. When the book comes to the reveal at that point I just shrugged about it. There is ultimately nothing to say in the end except what a waste of many lives we get to read about in this book.

"The Distant Hours" has a long lost letter being delivered many decades after it should have gone. One of the characters in this book, Edie, is displeased (maybe that's too strong a word) that her mother may have secrets that she has never heard. Deciding to force herself into her mother's past, Edie goes hunting and goes to a castle her mother stayed at during the war years in England (Milderhurst) where the three Blythe sisters still live. Edie's mother (Meredith) has her own reasons for not wanting to revisit her past. However, Edie is given the opportunity to learn about the author of the mysterious "The True History of the Mud Man" and goes to learn more about the Blythe sisters. 


Eh, Edie bugged me. Sorry. I just could not get over her sneaking and even reading her mother's private letters. Yes her aunts sucks for giving them to her (and seriously though) but Edie feels entitled to know everything about her mother. She also pries about the Blythe sisters since she also feels as if they should just open themselves up to her. Edie feels sorry for Juniper, likes the one twin, Saffy (Seraphina) and fears Percy (Persephone). 


The secondary characters are barely present in this book. You read about the Blythe father and his madness, but you don't get to see it. You hear about it for the most part. We hear about how Juniper has been broken since her long lost fiancee left her, but you don't really get it since she is portrayed as vaguely confused. Juniper is also supposed to be a wonderful writer, but once again we don't get to "see" that, we just hear about what a genius she is. Same issue when we get the reveal about Percy's love life. I don't know why Morton decided to cut out things that would make these characters come to life, but she did. I absolutely loved "The Forgotten Garden", felt meh about this one, and just down and out disliked the last two books of her that I read. 


The writing was okay, I just found myself bored. Honestly nothing much happens in this book until the very end. And the ending was not worth slogging through this thing. 

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review 2018-04-25 15:31
A Wonderful Book to Read During the Winter Months
The Thirteenth Tale - Diane Setterfield

So I read "The Thirteenth Tale" eons ago. This book came out in 2006 and I recall starting it around Christmas time that same year. I fell in love with the book. Too bad I could not get into Setterfield's follow-up "Bellman & Black". I can't even tell you much about that second book except I fell asleep reading it and just took it back to the library the next day. This was back before I posted reviews about books I DNFed.


Back to "The Thirteenth Tale" though. This book has everything. You got a Gothic style mystery with all kinds of twists and turns about a family called Angelfield.  For me the best parts of the book are the ones in which Vida Winter tells her story. Margaret who has been brought to write a biographer of Vida Winter I found to not be interesting in the least little bit. She has her own story, but it's honestly not as intriguing as Vida Winter. 


I tend to re-read this book every year or so, and I just finished it again when I was on my vacation to Seattle/Portland. I don't know why on a flight to Seattle I said to myself that I must read a Gothic mystery novel, but there you go. I did. 


The book begins with Margaret getting a request to come and learn about Vida Winter's life and write her life story. Margaret is vaguely familiar with Vida Winter and goes and reads a copy of Winter's book called "Thirteen Tales of Change and Desperation" the only issue is that there are only 12 stories, not 13, which led to many in the literary world to wonder about the so-called 13th tale. 


I liked that in the end the only thing that kept Margaret on to listen to Vida's tale was for her to promise to tell her a ghost story. And there were many ghosts in her story. 


The secondary characters in this one do frighten at times and what you learn about them and what they have done, you can see why Vida Winter has stories featuring ghosts.


I really loved the writing. I could picture all of the characters and Angelfield in my mind.  


There is a twist in the end that I did not see coming. I remember being gobsmacked in a good way when all is revealed. I don't know if older me would have picked up on it or not though. I like to think not, I love books that genuinely surprise you. 

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