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Archive for August, 2012

Nine Coaches Waiting

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(Book 1 for RIP)

Nine Coaches Waiting by Mary Stewart.

Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Chicago Review Press (May 1, 2006)
ISBN-10: 1556526180

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Book Description

A governess in a French château encounters an apparent plot against her young charge’s life in this unforgettably haunting and beautifully written suspense novel. When lovely Linda Martin first arrives at Château Valmy as an English governess to the nine-year-old Count Philippe de Valmy, the opulence and history surrounding her seems like a wondrous, ecstatic dream. But a palpable terror is crouching in the shadows. Philippe’s uncle, Leon de Valmy, is the epitome of charm, yet dynamic and arrogant—his paralysis little hindrance as he moves noiselessly in his wheelchair from room to room. Only his son Raoul, a handsome, sardonic man who drives himself and his car with equally reckless abandon, seems able to stand up to him. To Linda, Raoul is an enigma—though irresistibly attracted to him, she senses some dark twist in his nature. When an accident deep in the woods nearly kills Linda’s innocent charge, she begins to wonder if someone has deadly plans for the young count.

When I saw this book in a used book store, I thought it looked like a book for RIP.  Then I saw the author was Mary Stewart who’s Arthur/Merlin books I had enjoyed eons ago and so I took it home.

Admittedly, I did begin reading this before Carl put up the RIP announcement but hey, it fit so I am using it as my 1st RIP read!

Upon reading the first 70 pages or so I thought maybe this wasn’t for RIP after all.  It talked about Linda who went to France to be a governess to a young boy named Philippe. It went on letting you learn of Linda and how she came to become a governess and such.. it was interesting but not “wow”.  Then about half way thru the book someone started the car and the story took off like a dragster going well over 200 mph!!

The mystery part of the book began in an instant and didn’t let up until the end!  It went for an “ok” book to being a good book!

For many it might not be their cup of tea.  It does have a slow beginning. Or I should say, half a book.  I found the second half made up for it , but that might not be for everyone.

 

 

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RIP

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Rip is here at last!

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Each year when Carl begins RIP my mind jumps back to the first time I joined in. Not knowing what to read because my mind said  things I just was not into reading I found a little book who’s main characters were a vampire and a werewolf.  With a deep breath and a *here I go* I read Gil’s All Fright Diner and found it delightful!… so no I cannot enter RIP without the thought of that book coming to mind. 

Beginning today Carl is  Hosting yet another new RIP for all to find those new spooky, or gothic, or murder books.

His goals are simple:

1. Have fun reading.
2. Share that fun with others.

The purpose of R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril VII is to enjoy books and movies/television that could be classified (by you) as:

Mystery.
Suspense.
Thriller.
Dark Fantasy.
Gothic.
Horror.
Supernatural.
Or anything sufficiently moody that shares a kinship with the above.

So choose a Peril and jump right in to all the fun!

I have decided to do Peril the Second which is to read 2 RIP type books. (we all know this is because I don’t do commitment well. I will read more then 2)

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Anyway….Carl like to see pools of books, so here’s my pool!………..

Books on my TBR shelves that fit the bill are:

1. Atonement, 

2. 20th Century Ghosts,  

3. Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil, 

4. Pickwick Papers

5. Bleak House

6. Oliver Twist

7. Kept

8. The Terror……………

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9. Nine Coaches Waiting,

10. Irish Ghosts and Hauntings

11. The Haunted Hotel & Other Stories

12. Mina

13. 11/22/63

14. Nevermore

15. What the Dead Know

16. The Anatomy of Ghosts

17. City of Nets

18. The Night Watch

19. The Name of the Rose

20. An Unpardonable Crime

And if that isn’t enough to choose from…. there’s always my 2 favorite reads at RIP time,  The Thirteenth Tale and Drood!

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Of course just because there’s there’s a pool  doesn’t mean I”ll be swimming in it!  In fact, it’s generally more possible  that I find new ones along the way!

RIP is the best way to *fall* into the new season….

Let the ghostly, ghastly , ghoulish reading begin!!!! I think I will head for my dungeon and find a good book………………………………………

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It began to get very windy and rain about 10:30 am. (note the grass between the walk and pond)

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(an hour later: note the grass left between the pond and the walkway)

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an hour later: the ducks are now swimming ON the walkway!

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It finally eased up about 3:30 pm… can we say it’s flooded around here?!

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From Hell

A quickie post :

I came across a BBC American movie channel today.  It was playing a movie I had never seen called:  From Hell.

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Johnny Depp

Heather Graham

Ian Holm (the elder, Bilbo)

Robbie Coltrane (Hagrid)

Great cast!!!!… this would be such a good movie for anyone to watch for RIP!  If only it came on tv next month!

 

From Hell (2001)

It is 1888 in London, and the unfortunate poor lead horrifying lives in the city’s deadliest slum, Whitechapel. Harassed by gangs and forced to walk the streets for a living, Mary Kelly and her small group of companions trudge on through this daily misery, their only consolation being that things can’t get any worse. Yet things somehow do when their friend Ann is kidnapped and they are drawn into a conspiracy with links higher up than they could possibly imagine. The kidnapping is soon followed by the gruesome murder of another woman, Polly, and it becomes apparent that they are being hunted down, one by one. Sinister even by Whitechapel standards, the murder grabs the attention of Inspector Fred Abberline, a brilliant yet troubled man whose police work is often aided by his psychic abilities. Abberline becomes deeply involved with the case, which takes on personal meaning to him when he and Mary begin to fall in love. But as he gets closer to the truth Whitechapel becomes more and more dangerous for Abberline, Mary, and the other girls. Whoever is responsible for the grisly acts is not going to give up his secret without a fight….will they be able to survive the avenging force that has been sent after them from hell? Written by Anonymous

I am still surprised that I hadn’t seen this movie before.  David, my brother’s partner, was a huge fan of Johnny Depp and every birthday or  Christmas I’d look for something he didn’t have of Johnny Depp’s to get him and never heard of this one!

It was a very good “jack the ripper” type movie and if you like Johnny Depp I would recommend that you find this movie and watch it.   Of course for me it was also seeing Robbie Coltrane without a beard as Hagrid!  I’ve only seen him in 2 movies where he looked like himself and I think he’s a fine actor.

 

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The Hobbit

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Books for Children
ISBN-10: 0547953836

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Amazon.com Review

"In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort."

The hobbit-hole in question belongs to one Bilbo Baggins, an upstanding member of a "little people, about half our height, and smaller than the bearded dwarves." He is, like most of his kind, well off, well fed, and best pleased when sitting by his own fire with a pipe, a glass of good beer, and a meal to look forward to. Certainly this particular hobbit is the last person one would expect to see set off on a hazardous journey; indeed, when Gandalf the Grey stops by one morning, "looking for someone to share in an adventure," Baggins fervently wishes the wizard elsewhere. No such luck, however; soon 13 fortune-seeking dwarves have arrived on the hobbit’s doorstep in search of a burglar, and before he can even grab his hat or an umbrella, Bilbo Baggins is swept out his door and into a dangerous adventure.

The dwarves’ goal is to return to their ancestral home in the Lonely Mountains and reclaim a stolen fortune from the dragon Smaug. Along the way, they and their reluctant companion meet giant spiders, hostile elves, ravening wolves–and, most perilous of all, a subterranean creature named Gollum from whom Bilbo wins a magical ring in a riddling contest

The Hobbit was probably the book that turned me into a fantasy fiction book reader. And well it should!

I decided to reread the Hobbit since I believe I’ve heard that Part 1 of the movie will come out this December.

When I began reading it was good because it had really been eons since I last read the book.  All of the dialogue has been well forgotten by me and I found I had even forgotten one of their adventures on the way to Mirkwood.  Beorn, the skin-changer. I’m not sure how I managed to completely forget him but I did!  So it was good for me to reread the book so I might see how well Peter Jackson sticks to the book.  Though I have full confidence in Mr Jackson to do as superb a job with the Hobbit as he did with LoTR.

Since Amazon gives a good review I will  just write a part of a dialogue that I had forgotten.  It was when Bilbo first meets Smaug and although invisible talks with him.  How amazingly clever Tolkien was to be able to “give so many clues” and not give away who he was!

Smaug: Who are you and where do you come from, may I ask?

Bilbo: You may indeed! I come from under the hill, and under the hills and over the hills my paths led.  And through the air. I am he that walks unseen.

So I can well believe, said Smaug, but that is hardly your usual  name.

I am the clue-finder, the web-cutter, the stinging fly, I was chosen for the lucky number.

Lovely titles!  sneered the dragon.  But lucky numbers don’t always come off.

I am he that buries his friends alive and drowns them and draws them alive again from the water.  I came from the end of a bag, but no bag went over me.

These don’t sound so creditable scoffed Smaug.

I am the friend of bears and the guest of eagles.  I am Ringwinner and Luckwearer, and I am Barrel-rider, went on  Bilbo beginning to be pleased with his riddling.

That’s better! said Smaug.  But don’t let your imagination run away with you!

It was good to reread the Hobbit after such a long time.  Now I can’t wait for the movie to come out!  I am a bit troubled though to know it will be out in 3 parts..I hope the releases are 6 months apart and not a year apart!!!

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Who Am I?

I picked these two books up at Books a Million for 10.00 (for both)… when I put them together to snap a photo I thought them a very odd pair!

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The word : eclectic jumped to mind.   I found this very interesting for someone 68 yrs old.

When I was younger my reading was all: fantasy/ fiction. (I still read fantasy/fiction)

A little later in life I found I had added a few biographies. (now I have many more)

Then I met Carl (Stainless Steel Rats) and found myself adding Gothic Mysteries to my reading agenda.

Then I met my “sis”, Cath, of Read_Warbler fame, who lives across the pond, and found my mysteries all seemed to want to be in England!  I think I can blame her for my love of YA books now too! (happily I have found some wonderful YA authors like Michael Scott and James Owen)

Then I added Wilkie Collins and Charles Dickens! (me?!…classic writers?… this was no longer me!)

Toss in Daphne du Maurier, & Frances Hodgson Burnett for a few female authors and I am beginning to wonder who I am!

And now it’s come to this:  non fiction! (gulp) and books on Roosevelt!  I think I am going to hell in a handbag!  Why were these sort of things not interesting when I was young enough to become smart by reading them?????  To be honest… at my age with a memory like a sieve ..just what do I think I will learn and why do I want to?

Ok.. so I don’t necessarily look at it as learning as much as it being like a good movie… interesting. 

I think I am terrified to ask:  what’s next?

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Back in the Day….

First off I have to say I had a shock yesterday.   After doing my  post about Little Lord Fauntleroy the movie actually came on TCM later that day!!!  I didn’t know it was coming on and missed half of the movie but I was glued to the second half since I had just read the book!

All I can say is wow!  Almost verbatim from the book!!!  I guess back then they figured if a book was that good to be made into a movie why mess with perfection?!!!  Extraordinary!   Seriously… if you can see Little Lord Fauntleroy don’t miss the opportunity!

Since seeing the movie made me nostalgic for the old black and white movies and the child stars I thought I’d post a few to see if you know who they are.

A dead giveaway will be their name “lightly” below each photo… but try to guess first!

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If you have seen these child stars as adults it wouldn’t surprise me.. but what you should do is to find some of the movies they were in as children…you’d be amazed at what good movies they were in.

Below is Freddie Bartholomew , Mickey Rooney and Jackie Cooper.

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