Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
back to top
Search tags: quarantine-2020
Load new posts () and activity
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2020-04-14 02:46
The Flower Reader by Elizabeth Loupas
The Flower Reader - Elizabeth Loupas

This book was such a disappointment. I loved Loupas' book, The Red Lily Crown. I loved how she told tales of the de Medici family and brought Renaissance Italy with all its intrigue to life. Someone who did what she did with the de Medici's should have easily handled Mary, Queen of Scots, and all the drama of her Scottish entourage. One would think.


This book was a disaster from the start. Rinette's wedding is forcibly disrupted by a group of Scottish brutes who want to force her marriage to someone else. This starts a theme that will carry throughout the entire novel. ALL Scottish men are brutes. They are savage, bodice-ripping, dagger-carrying, brawling-in-the-streets brutes. The French aren't any nicer but they dress better so the author is a little more forgiving of their actions.


And then there is the one and only Mary, Queen of Scots. She was worse than the brutes. For starters, Loupas' MQoS made Charles VI of France look sane. I recognize that there were actual, legit issues with MQoS. Most biographers suggest she suffered from the same disease attributed to King George III's bouts of madness. Sorry but if Mary is really as awful as Loupas makes her out to be, her bastard half brother actually makes her disappear and puts the crown on his own head. He doesn't waste years fighting with her before fleeing the country. So maybe it's all a little more complicated than that. But is it really? Loupas would have you believe that it's really not. After all, Scotland is overrun with violent, wild men who can't stand being told what to do by any woman no matter what her title is.


Somewhere in all of this, there's a casket (foreshadow alert) containing letters and a mysterious prophecy written by the one and only Nostradamus. These items were property of Mary's mother, Marie of Guise. Rinette is entrusted with this casket and told to deliver it into Mary's hands upon Marie's death. Instead of just handing the casket to Mary as soon has she is off her French boat, Rinette decides she's going to hold on to it. She thinks she's going to bargain with someone she hasn't talked to or seen since they were eight years old. Before she had been Queen of France and Queen of Scotland. Spoiler alert- It doesn't work out very well for Rinette. 


Last issue with this book -

I'm so over authors who spend all kinds of time telling me about their heroines who are strong, brave, and independent women who don't need a man only to have the story ending with a woman who needs a man because she spent the whole book making bad choices. That was a terrible run on sentence. It's exactly how the thought came out of my brain. I'm not apologizing. Just acknowledging. Anyway, if she's (Rinette or Mary. Take your pick.) so smart, why does she continue to make so many bad choices? Both things can't be true. Beyonce has told us as much several time. 


Loupas has one other published work I have on my TBR. It takes the reader back to Italy. I'll probably pick it up only because I loved her last venture into Italy. Maybe it's just Scotland with all of its brutes that's the problem. 


If I were able to get to the library right now, this book would have gone back unfinished. As it is, I cannot get to the library so I might as well read all of the books I have. 



Dates read 4/5/2020 - 4/13/2020

Book 25/75 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2020-04-05 20:46
Bitter Greens by Kate Forsyth
Bitter Greens: A Novel - Kate Forsyth

It seems rather fitting to read a book that's a re-telling of the Rapunzel fairy tale right now. That's part of the reason I was drawn to this book. The other part? I was hoping for something lighter, more uplifting. Disney has spoiled me into thinking all fairy tales have happy endings. 


The premise of this book is a re-telling of the story of Rapunzel. You know, the girl with the hair who gets locked in the tower. Her magical hair is the source of everlasting youth for an evil witch. All of those elements are here but this story is so much more. 


Charlotte-Rose de la Force was a real historical figure. She is the person credited with creating the first recorded version of Rapunzel. She lived in France during the reign of the Sun King. Hers was not a charmed life. Charlotte managed to find herself entangled in scandal after scandal. After one scandal too many, Charlotte is banished to a convent. While working in the gardens, Charlotte is told the story of Rapunzel, or as she is called in this story, Marghertia. The story of Margherita braids (see what I did there) itself into Charlotte's story. After some time the reader is even given the back story of Margherita's witch.


Normally, I'm not a fan of stories that jump perspectives as frequently as this one does. Most writers aren't able to maintain the flow necessary to keep the story together.  I tend to find them a little choppy. This was not the case with Bitter Greens. Forsyth does a masterful job weaving the stories of all three women together. 


This story was exactly what I needed right now. I know I'm not being held against my will in a tower by an evil witch. I know I haven't been banished to a convent. I am stuck in a house with three demanding, bored, irritable princesses. However, much like Marghertia, I believe it's important to continue to look forward to a time when we will all be allowed to roam free. It sounds cliche.  I know but honestly, who couldn't do with a little cliche right now? 


I feel a little better having read this book. Right now, I think we could all agree, that really is the point of reading. 


Dates Read 4/1/2020 - 4/5/2020

Book 23/75

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2020-03-25 14:27
Day 8

I've officially made it a whole week. I'm pretty sure we are all in one piece. Physically. I don't dare delve into anyone's mental state right now. Least of all mine. 


What I hope is the final hammer dropped on Monday. My husband showed up at home four hours earlier than he normally would. His boss refuses to close until ordered to do so. Even then, rumor has it she's going to keeping car dealerships open is essential. Whatever. At any rate, because business is so bad, cuts are starting to happen. Three service department guys were laid off. Four parts guys. Two secretaries. One tech guy. The tech guy is my husband. The whole last in, first out thing. 


Fantastic. I really wanted to have him home while I'm trying to keep my children from going insane and figuring out how to turn myself into the teacher I never wanted to be. 


On Monday I gave up my reading/work corner. The girls now have it as a school/project corner. This isn't the first time I've given up my reading space. Last winter it was a dedicated Lego zone while Mother Nature kept up pinned indoors. However, I knew eventually I'd get that space back. This time, I have no idea when I'll get a space back. 


Now that I've figured out how to add pictures (I no longer feel qualified to teach my children anything after not being able to locate an obvious button), I'm adding pictures to things. 


The transformed work zone. 


My poor library after I had to move all my stuff somewhere else. 

More posts
Your Dashboard view:
Need help?