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review 2016-03-30 19:02
Lost Among the Living
Lost Among the Living - Simone St. James

A highly atmospheric mystery.


We are in England after the First World War: Joanna, our protagonist, finds herself facing an uncertain future. Her husband, Alex, is missing and presumed dead. She has no family, no money and no job. Alex's aunt Dottie, hires Jo as her companion and personal assistant. But when Jo moves in with her boss to Alex's old house, strange things begin to happen... and I don't want to add more as it might spoil the plot.


It took me a bit to get into the story and although it wasn't an unpredictable plot, I enjoyed it very much. The setting should be noted, as it's so different of what I usually read. Forget fantasy lands, or dystopian futures. we are in Post War England. This added a certain atmospheric element that worked excellent with Jo's tale. I could see this being the script of a rather good film. The writing was really good and each scene involved great detail that made the story more compact and easy to immense yourself. It reminded me a bit of the movie "The Woman in Black".


The only part I didn't really buy was the romance of Joanna and her husband Alex. It wasn't fully justified in my opinion. I don't really get instant love and I don't like it in books. If you don't object to that, the whole book will work out quite well for you.


I'd recommend this to people who like mysteries with supernatural and historical elements.


**Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from First to Read in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2016-03-25 17:41
The Penultimate Peril (A series of unfortunate events #12)
The Penultimate Peril - Brett Helquist,Lemony Snicket,Michael Kupperman

❝Certain people have said that the world is like a calm pond, and that anytime a person does even the smallest thing, it is as if a stone has dropped into the pond, spreading circles of ripples further and further out, until the entire world has been changed by one tiny action. ❞

Okay this is the best of the series yet. It's full of adventure for our beloved children, as:

- both new and old questions appear,and

- mysteries are solved, on a hotel everyone from the lives of the orphans makes an appearance.


The children pose as the staff, on a hotel where the meeting of the infamous V.F.D. organization will take place. They have limited time to figure out who can be trusted, as more and more familiar faces begin to check in the hotel...


I never thought I would say this but I'm beginning to like the dreadful count...Of course the next one was picked immediately and I both want and dread the moment I close the last page of the last book on the last chapter of the orphans' lives.


P.S = Remember that quote I marked in the review of the previous book?

❝The way sadness works is one of the strange riddles of the world. If you are stricken with a great sadness, you may feel as if you have been set aflame, not only because of the enormous pain, but also because your sadness may spread over your life, like smoke from an enormous fire.❞

I think it gives us a very great insight on the life of a certain villain...

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review 2016-03-24 17:49
The Grim Grotto (A series of unfortunate events #11)
The Grim Grotto - Michael Kupperman,Lemony Snicket,Brett Helquist

❝He who hesitates is lost.❞


That's captain Widdershins's personal philosophy. In this very fast paced adventure the orphans will once again fate mortal dangers and try to overcome them the best way they can: together.

The Grim Grotto holds some terrible secrets for the unfortunate Baudelaires and for once the story closes on a positive note...

Off to the next one!!


Quote I really liked in this story:

❝The way sadness works is one of the strange riddles of the world. If you are stricken with a great sadness, you may feel as if you have been set aflame, not only because of the enormous pain, but also because your sadness may spread over your life, like smoke from an enormous fire.❞

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review 2016-03-21 18:37
The Slippery Slope (A series of unfortunate events #10)
The Slippery Slope - Michael Kupperman,Lemony Snicket,Brett Helquist

❝The Baudelaire orphans, however, had no choice but to be on the road less traveled.❞

The 'Slippery Slope' finds the orphans divided, as Klaus and Violet must save their little sister from the clutches of their mortal enemy: count Olaf. In this chapter of their unfortunate adventures they do find a very resourceful ally. Plus I should mention that the wordplay with the letter V.F.D is ingenious!


I really like this book very much and I would have been surprised to find who that ally was, had I not accidentally read it on a wiki page of the series (people should really avoid reading these pages, they are full of spoilers....) I am already on the next book and I can't wait to see how the story ends...

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review 2016-03-19 02:31
A Carnivorous Carnival (A series of unfortunate events #9)
The Carnivorous Carnival - Lemony Snicket

❝ The Beaudelaire orphans were in the belly of the beast - that is the dark and cramped trunk of a long, black automobile.❞

I took a small break from the terrible adventures of these extremely unfortunate orphans. Now I'm back to finish their story. I switched to the audio versions this time, as it truly enhances the story. Tim Curry is a superb narrator and voices Count Olaf just as I imagined him.


In Carnivorous Carnival, the children follow their mortal enemy in the hopes that he would lead them to the mysterious V.F.D. They end up in a carnival show that is being run by a fortune teller, Madame Lulu.


We have completely abandoned the formula used on the first seven books: the children being passed from one guardian to another, until Count Olaf tracks them down and tries to snatch their fortune. He fails and tries again. Alas, it grew a bit predictable and after the 'Vile Village' it was a pleasant change to have the children trying to make it on their own. On every book the children discover a part of themselves and they always learn a lesson. Time after time, they prove just how resourceful they are. I immediately started the next book after I finished this one as it ended on a very dreadful way...


P.S: I use this book for this month's keyword challenge: "Fire". It will be a tweak of the word obviously, as there are far too many fires on these series. The fire on this one is special as

the Baudelaires were the ones who set it.

(spoiler show)

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