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Archive for January, 2019

Burying the Honeysuckle Girls by Emily Carpenter.

Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing (April 26, 2016)
ISBN-10: 1503935019

 

Amazon Review

 

Althea Bell is still heartbroken by her mother’s tragic, premature death—and tormented by the last, frantic words she whispered into young Althea’s ear: Wait for her. For the honeysuckle girl. She’ll find you, I think, but if she doesn’t, you find her.

Adrift ever since, Althea is now fresh out of rehab and returning to her family home in Mobile, Alabama, determined to reconnect with her estranged, ailing father. While Althea doesn’t expect him, or her politically ambitious brother, to welcome her with open arms, she’s not prepared for the chilling revelation of a grim, long-buried family secret. Fragile and desperate, Althea escapes with an old flame to uncover the truth about her lineage. Drawn deeper into her ancestors’ lives, Althea begins to unearth their disturbing history…and the part she’s meant to play in it.

Gripping and visceral, this unforgettable debut delves straight into the heart of dark family secrets and into one woman’s emotional journey to save herself from a sinister inheritance.

 

Well, I went thru this book pretty quick! That says one thing… I enjoyed the book very much. Like the novel before this story went thru a later and earlier date.  Once again there was no problem knowing where, or I should say, when you are.

Short chapters with surprises as Althea tried to find out what her family history was for the all the secrets of the woman in her family.

A good and enjoyable read!

 

 

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The Broken Girls by Simone St. James.

 

Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: Berkley;  edition (March 20, 2018)
ISBN-10: 0451476204

 

Amazon Review:

 

Vermont, 1950. There’s a place for the girls whom no one wants—the troublemakers, the illegitimate, the too smart for their own good. It’s called Idlewild Hall. And in the small town where it’s located, there are rumors that the boarding school is haunted. Four roommates bond over their whispered fears, their budding friendship blossoming—until one of them mysteriously disappears… 

Vermont, 2014. As much as she’s tried, journalist Fiona Sheridan cannot stop revisiting the events surrounding her older sister’s death. Twenty years ago, her body was found lying in the overgrown fields near the ruins of Idlewild Hall. And though her sister’s boyfriend was tried and convicted of murder, Fiona can’t shake the suspicion that something was never right about the case.

When Fiona discovers that Idlewild Hall is being restored by an anonymous benefactor, she decides to write a story about it. But a shocking discovery during the renovations will link the loss of her sister to secrets that were meant to stay hidden in the past—and a voice that won’t be silenced…

 

Totally liked this book!  It went back and fourth from 1950 to “present time” (2014). There was no problem following the story.  1950 was 4 girls sent a a school for kids that weren’t wanted home for one reason or another.  2014 was a young female journalist writing a story about the school that was supposedly haunted.

Fast reading.  Short chapters.  Good characters. Good story. Do you believe in ghosts?

I have read one other book by this author a few years ago, The Haunting of Maddy Clare, which if I strain to remember I liked that book too!

 

 

 

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The Death of Joan of Arc by Michael Scott. (Short Story/ Kindle only)

File Size: 2442 KB
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (August 24, 2010)
ASIN: B003Z4JK9U

 

 

Nicholas Flamel appeared in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter—but did you know he really lived? And he might still be alive today! Discover the truth in Michael Scott’s New York Times bestselling series the Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel with The Death of Joan of Arc, an ebook original.

In this never-before-seen lost story, Joan of Arc was not burned at the stake in Rouen, France in 1431. She was rescued from certain death by Scathach the Warrior.


The truth about that day is revealed in the last will and testament of William of York, and it will leave you wondering: does Joan of Arc still walk the earth?

This is a short story about Scathach saving Joan of Arc from being burned as a Witch. 

For you to know about Scathach you really need to read Michael’s series of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel.  Scatach has a good part in the series and you get to understand her better.

I have always loved that in Michael’s Alchemyst story (6 books) he used real characters, such as Nicholas Flamel, and Dr. Dee, and he used mythical characters, and his own characters.. and made that mix work! I loved the books and these small stories.

Michael has written much more totally different from this series, but, like Harry Potter’s series, I can’t let go of the Nicholas Flamel series.

Try them.. I think you’ll like them all.

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Billy the Kid and the Vampyres of Vegas by Michael Scott. (Kindle only)

File Size: 2714 KB
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (November 22, 2011) (and old people!)
ASIN: B005PRJKNQ

Read the whole series!
The Alchemyst
The Magician
The Sorceress
The Necromancer
The Warlock
The Enchantress

Amazon Review

 

Nicholas Flamel appeared in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter—but did you know he really lived? And he might still be alive today! Discover the truth in Michael Scott’s New York Times bestselling series the Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel with Billy the Kid and the Vampyres of Vegas, an ebook original.


Years before Sophie and Josh Newman met Nicholas Flamel, two legendary warriors fought together for the first time. Billy the Kid and Scathach the Shadow.


Now that lost story can be told . . .
Billy the Kid is immortal. And being immortal means following unpredictable paths. With this exclusive eBook, Michael Scott offers readers a never-before-seen short story from the world of the bestselling series the Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel: the tale of how Billy the Kid and Scathach meet for the first time and join forces against the unseen, deadly and eternally hungry vampyres who control the city of Las Vegas—where Scathach must face her greatest fear.

This is a “story” I should have read years ago. (sigh) But I never had a way to read e-books. Now I can.. so I ran right to Michaels to side stories, this one and The Death of Joan of Arc, and bought them!  That, of course means Joan of Arc is next to read!!  They are short, and I wouldn’t read them if you didn’t read or at least know about Michael’s series The Alchemyst.  They are for young adults..I guess at my ripe old age, as far as reading goes, I am still a young adult..because I love those books and loved this story and have no doubt I will love the Death of Joan of Arc.

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Something extra: About the author who I think is such a wonderful writer.

  Michael Scott   Michael Scott

Biography

“Some stories wait their turn to be told, others just tap you on the shoulder and insist you tell them.”

By one of those wonderful coincidences with which life is filled, I find that the first time the word alchemyst–with a Y–appears in my notes is in May 1997. Ten years later, almost to the day, The Alchemyst, the first book in the Nicholas Flamel series, will be published in May.

Every writer I know keeps a notebook full of those ideas, which might, one day, turn into a story. Most writers know they will probably never write the vast majority of those ideas. Most stories wait their turn to be told, but there are a few which tap you on the shoulder and insist on being told. These are the stories which simply will not go away until you get them down on paper, where you find yourself coming across precisely the research you need, or discovering the perfect character or, in my case, actually stumbling across Nicholas Flamel’s house in Paris.

Discovering Flamel’s house was the final piece I needed to put the book together. It also gave me the character of Nicholas Flamel because, up to that point, the book was without a hero.
And Nicholas Flamel brought so much to the story.

Nicholas Flamel was one of the most famous alchemists of his day. He was born in 1330 and earned his living as a bookseller, which, by another of those wonderful coincidences, was the same job I had for many years.

One day he bought a book, the same book mentioned in The Alchemyst: the Book of Abraham. It, too, really existed and Nicholas Flamel left us with a very detailed description of the copper-bound book. Although the book itself is lost, the illustrations from the text still exist.

Accompanied by his wife Perenelle, Nicholas spent more than 20 years trying to translate book. He must have succeeded. He became extraordinarily wealthy and used some of his great wealth to found hospitals, churches, and orphanages. Perhaps he had discovered the secret of the Philosopher’s Stone: how to turn base metal into gold.

Of course the greatest mystery linked to Nicholas Flamel is the story of what happened after he died. When his tomb was opened by thieves looking for some of his great wealth, it was found to be empty. Had Nicholas and Perenelle Flamel been buried in secret graves, or had they never died in the first place? In the months and years to follow, sightings of the Flamels were reported all over Europe. Had Nicholas also discovered that other great mystery of alchemy: the secret of immortality?

What writer couldn’t resist a story that combined magical books, an immortal magician and grave robbing and, even more excitingly, that had a basis in fact? It begged the questions: if he was still alive today, where would he be and what would he be doing? Obvious really–he would be running a bookshop in San Francisco.

The Alchemyst was a tough book to write, probably the toughest of all the books I’ve done so far. It is the first in a series, and because the story told across all six books is so tightly integrated, keeping track of the characters and events means that I have to keep extensive and detailed notes. A minor change in book one could impact dramatically book three. There are tiny clues seeded into the first book that pay off in later books. The time frame for the entire series is very tight–The Alchemyst, for example, takes place over two days–so I too need to keep an hour-by-hour breakdown of events.

For people who like to know the practicalities, I write every day and sometimes all day and often long into the night. Nights really are the best time for writing. It’s that time the conscious side of the brain is starting to shut down and the unconscious takes over. The following day I’ll read what I’ve written the previous day, then edit and rewrite. I work on two computer screens; the story on one screen, notes and research on the second screen.

And now let me answer the question you are about to ask me because, sooner or later, everyone asks, “What is the secret of writing?”

A comfortable chair. A really comfortable chair–because if you’re a writer, you’re going to spend a lot of time sitting in it.

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A Death in the Small Hours by Charles Finch.

Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Minotaur Books (August 6, 2013)
ISBN-10: 1250031494

 

Amazon Review

From Charles Finch, the critically acclaimed author of A Beautiful Blue Death and A Burial at Sea, comes A Death in the Small Hours–an intriguing new mystery in what The New York Times calls “a beguiling series”

Charles Lenox is at the pinnacle of his political career and is a delighted new father. His days of regularly investigating the crimes of Victorian London now some years behind him, he plans a trip to his uncle’s estate, Somerset, in the expectation of a few calm weeks to write an important speech. When he arrives in the quiet village of Plumley, however, what greets him is a series of strange vandalisms upon the local shops: broken windows, minor thefts, threatening scrawls.

Only when a far more serious crime is committed does he begin to understand the great stakes of those events, and the complex and sinister mind that is wreaking fear and suspicion in Plumley. Now, with his protege, John Dallington, at his side, the race is on for Lenox to find the culprit before he strikes again. And this time his victim may be someone that Lenox loves.

 

This is my second book by Charles Finch. I read “The Inheritance” in 2017.

I always love short chapters, it keeps me reading longer than I would with long chapters.  If you like short chapters you will be happy because this is one of those books.

Charles Lenox is in Parliament but has a love solving crimes, which he used to do. He seems to be now doing what his parents would be proud of rather than what he loves.

I enjoyed this story.  Victorian times are always among my favorites.  I will most likely read another by Charles Finch.. but who knows when? I don’t think I could read all my TBR books I have before I die!  Which is why there is always a large TBR pile (about 130) at my home!

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