Uncategorized

TTT: Character Traits I Love.

xxTop Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

halloween_dividers_19

It’s Top Ten Tuesday and I’m, surprisingly, going on the theme! I know, shocking, right? I thought it was an interesting premise, to pick ten traits that I particularly enjoy in a character. I think these are traits I look for in people too; though I admit, some might find them to be a turn-off, as they say. 

halloween_dividers_19

Apologetic. I like a character who can look at themselves and realise when they’ve been a bonehead about something and can apologize. Whether it’s through self-realization or someone pointing it out to them, I like it when they’re genuinely apologetic for whatever they’ve done. 

halloween_dividers_19

Adventurous. I enjoy a character who likes adventure. For this, I’m definitely eyeballing Lestat de Lioncourt. He’s such a card. Adventure fuels him and it’s that joie de vivre that most certainly makes a book entertaining. Lestat has many of these traits, to be frank. (If you’ve not read the Vampire Chronicles, I highly recommend them. I didn’t enjoy the last two books though.) Though, one who is reluctant to get into one is equally amusing. (Looking at you, Neville Longbottom and Louis de Pointe du Lac.) 

halloween_dividers_19

Confident. Confidence is a trait that I like in a character and in those who I know personally. I find it to be infectious; you may not be as confident on your own, but sometimes someone can inspire it within us. Whether it’s a fictional person or someone right beside me…I never can look at it as a bad thing.

halloween_dividers_19

Imaginative. Self-explanatory, isn’t it? Dream big! 

halloween_dividers_19

Loyal. This can be for good or bad. Loyalty to someone is commendable…even if you’re on the wrong side. I think loyalty is a trait that is underappreciated. 

halloween_dividers_19

Observant. Maybe because I’m like…the most unobservant thing in creation…I appreciate it in others, lol. 

halloween_dividers_19

Outspoken. We get one life. I think speaking up is super important. The problem is you have to know when to speak up. There are definitely wrong times to speak up and say things. (For example, politics. Unless there’s a segway into a said conversation? I wouldn’t go there.) 

halloween_dividers_19

Sentimental. I love it when a character gets sentimental over things. It’s relatable. I find I look at pictures and get sentimental. It’s like Dumbledore or Harry when they look in the Mirror of Erised. They see what they want to see; what they desire most. It’s a beautiful thing to be able to do that. I think everyone has that within them. Some don’t show it; others do.

halloween_dividers_19

Quirkiness. I love a character who is quirky and owns it. Take Luna Lovegood for example. She’s unusual. She knows it. She also knows what other people think of her and she doesn’t really give two figs. She is unapologetically herself. Luna has the confidence as well. I know I’ve used a lot of Harry Potter references, but I think they’re the perfect series of characters to use. 

halloween_dividers_19

Bravery. I know I was going in alphabetical order, but I wanted to put something in here that I think everyone appreciates. I think bravery is to be commended; especially if it’s for a cause you believe in. We all have the ability to be brave, to read someone’s journey to becoming said brave character is something I forever find enthralling. Such as Harry Potter himself. He knows how to be brave. He knows things are coming. But he faces a lot of trials before ultimately braving the ultimate one. You can apply that to someone like Katniss Everdeen too. There are many protagonists who go through a journey…and that’s why we keep reading. 

halloween_dividers_19

What did you think of my list? What do you like in a character? Sound off in comments and let me know! 

Untitled-2

Uncategorized

Top Ten Tue–wait. It’s Thursday!

untitled-3

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

This week’s theme is “Auto-Buy Authors”. This was actually harder than it sounds because picking ten was a challenge. There are a few, whom I need little of no thought about. Others, you know the struggle–you eventually get them, but you have to ask, “Do I need this…or gas more?” LoL. You know what I mean. You’re also probably side-eyeing my posting because today is Thursday. I’m trying to get back in the swing of things…I should be on time next week. *Should*.

Haha! ❤ Anyway, enjoy! xxUntitled-2

 

d163a-rainbow-hearts-page-divider
C.W Gortner. You all know by now that C.W Gortner is, was, and always will be an author I adore and whose work I will always support. He’s a brilliant author and if you happen to have him on Facebook, you’ll get a glimpse of the man behind the books. He himself is as intriguing as any of his main characters., Check out his work; you won’t regret it, I swear it.

Stephanie Thornton. We stan Ms. Thornton up in this blog! It’s as I said, her profession is a teacher, which is excellent, given that she educates through her spectacular work. I could be biased, given my love of history, but I think if you give her a shot, you won’t be disappointed.

Stephanie Dray. I loved her Ancient World novels…but her last two books, written with Laura Kamoie, have been absolutely outstanding. I LOVE American history so to see books about Eliza Hamilton and Patsy Jefferson, Thomas Jefferson’s daughter? My heart, man. It just about burst. Haha.

Diane Haeger/Anne Girard. I discovered Diane’s work when I was in High School still. One of those moments when I was hanging out in the school library and was looking for something to read during math class. I mean… >.> Well, I happened upon one of her books. I ended up reading through lunch, math class and on the bus on the way home. I’ve been a fan since.

Deborah Harkness. I fell in love with Discovery of Witches series. Now? If she puts anything more out? I will pre-order instantly. Diana and Matthew–Matthew in particular–just grabbed my attention and had this ‘warmblood’ dying for more. That I watched the series didn’t help! More, I say! Haha.

Sarah J. Maas. This seems surprising to most people. I confess I’m still working through her Throne of Glass series, but the ACOTAR series grabbed me and hasn’t let me go. Since then, I’ve been doing my best to make sure I always grab her work. And someday…I’ll get the five TOG books I need.

Ann Rinaldi. This isn’t a fair one, but for a while, she really was one of my auto-buys. I had to read her book ‘In My Father’s House’ for school and do a book report on it, and afterward, I was just in love with her work. I grabbed so many of her books. Sadly, I’ve lost a number of them through the years, but there are a few I still have and I don’t foresee myself ever getting rid of. Fun fact: It was Ms. Rinaldi’s book, ‘A Wolf By The Ears’ that brought Sally Hemings, Thomas Jefferson’s mistress/slave to my attention. I literally would save lunch money to buy her books. Especially during the Scholastic Book Fairs, heyyy. (Remember those?!)

Jean Plaidy. I love love love her Queens of England series. I’ve read them all, but I am trying to buy them because I simply love them. Sadly, Ms. Plaidy won’t be putting out any more books, as she passed away in 1993. Fortunately, she left quite the backlist for me! She wrote near 200 novels in her lifetime under several different nom de plumes.

J.K. Rowling. When it comes to Harry Potter, I’m a glutton. I have all seven novels, of course. I have ‘Philosopher’s Stone’ in the Gryffindor edition as well as Slytherin. (The Gryffindor one was sent by mistake; I just got to keep it.) I have the illustrated editions and History of Magic, which my dear Auntie Pat brought over for me from England! I, however, do not own and never will, ‘Cursed Child’. No, thank you.

Anne Rice. This is probably a cheat since I don’t feel this way about her anymore. I used to be so hardcore obsessed with The Vampire Chronicles. Lestat and Louis just..stole my heart. Louis in particular. The tall, dark, brooding bibliophile vampire spoke to me. I loved that despite his becoming a vampire, he managed to remain very human in certain ways. I wish Louis had been the narrator of more series, not to slight Lestat. But then, Ms. Rice said she was done writing the series…and when she came back; the spark that had made the series so fantastic originally was gone. I think I began to fall off the fanwagon when Blood Canticle came out. That first line..all these years later: ”I want to be a saint! I want to save souls by the million!” Gag me with a spork, Lestat. You’re a vampire.

d163a-rainbow-hearts-page-divider

There were quite a few other authors I’d have included, but I think this list is good. I hope you enjoyed it! Let me know who you guys picked/would pick.

 

Uncategorized

Top Ten Tuesday!

untitled-3

The theme this week is to pick anticipated reads…well, you can see. I’ve done that a few times already, so I thought it’d be fun to pick from one of the old topics that I hadn’t done yet. Thus, I picked:  Top Ten “Older” Books I Don’t Want People To Forget.

03990-JLP2013-POSTDIVIDER

1. The Diary of Anne Frank. I think it would be devastating to forget about this book. Anne’s voice is so pure and honest, painting the portrait of life in hiding, her hopes, dreams, fears. Her ideals. She was wise beyond her years and to forget her would be a tragedy. She died far too young and for what? Because she was Jewish. As though Jews were useless. One should never forget the Holocaust nor those who lived, who died and those who told/tell the story.

2. Little Women. I always live in fear that someday this will be an obsolete book, one that doesn’t inspire little girls as it did me. They won’t come to know Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy and to appreciate their unique stories, to learn how to forge a path when the odds are dead set against you. To grow as a person and experience the growing pains that come with age…such as when childhood events no longer have the same appeal, but instead have a warm place in your heart. This, to me, would be devastating were it to be forgotten.

3. Gone With The Wind. Don’t judge, haha. But Scarlett is a character that I think everyone should read at least once. Her life is the ultimate soap operator and yet, we come to see moments where Scarlett is the bamf we know her to be. She’s a pure spitfire and I adore her, even when she’s being bratty, for lack of a better term. Scarlett doesn’t accept things, she works for them. She is just a hell of a character.

4. In Cold Blood. Truman Capote wrote this and it’s absolutely heartbreaking, anger-inducing, it is a tumult of emotions. It is considered the first True Crime book and people just couldn’t get over it nor the author himself. Capote went to the town where the murders occurred and researched; with him, he brought Harper Lee, his best friend. It’s a sensational view.

5.  To Kill A Mockingbird. I was one of the few in my class who enjoyed the book. It’s important to history because it spotlights a true miscarriage of justice. And it also questions Human Nature, which I always thought a fascinating thing. There is no frivolous nature in this book. It is to the point and it is truly a masterpiece, in my opinion. I found I was always reading ahead in class when we were reading it. (If my old English teacher is reading, hi!)

6. The Phantom of the Opera. It’s one of my favorite musicals, though I haven’t had the pleasure of seeing it in person yet. I love the story, which is essentially a Beauty and the Beast retelling. It’s splendidly written and I truly adored the story. (Susan Kay’s ‘Phantom’ was also brilliant.) I maintain I’d have chosen the Phantom. I’ve never liked Raoul.

7. The Color Purple. I don’t know if you’d consider it a classic, but to me it is. It’s one of those books that once you read it (or even see the film), it will forever stick with you. It’s full of tragedy and triumphs, joy, sorrow, for every good, there is a bad. But you stick with it because it’s so realistic. Miss Celie is one of those characters I will forever carry in my heart as is Sophia. (You may recall Oprah played her in the film and Whoopi Goldberg played Celie.)

8. The Portrait of Dorian Gray. I confess that I added this because I saw the movie before I read the book. I blame Ben Barnes (you may know him from The Punisher, Narnia, Westworld) for it. He is the perfect embodiment of this young man who slips further and further into corruption. A portrait keeps him young and youthful, the portrait ages and shows the effects. It’s a cautionary tale and a splendid read. (I am an unabashed fangirl, lol.)

9. Anything from Shakespeare. I know some find him terribly boring, but I think going back and reading his works are very beneficial. Besides, he coined many different terms that we keep in our lexicon today. It is also fun to see how the language evolves through the ages and how problems tend to remain the same, despite the eras changing.

Examples: 
–“Dead as a doornail” — (Henry VI Part II)
–“For goodness’ sake” — (Henry VIII)
–“Foregone conclusion” — (Othello)
–“Full circle” — (King Lear)
–“Wear my heart upon my sleeve” — (Othello)
–“Wild-goose chase” — (Romeo and Juliet)

10. The Hunchback of Notre-Dame. I admit that I read an abridged version when I was 11 or 12, but I do mean to read the full novel. I absolutely adore the story. Quasimodo, born misshapen and abused, Esmeralda, a Romani (‘Gypsy’ as they refer to her) dancer/performer, Phoebus, the head guard, Frollo, the judge who is disgustingly corrupt though he tries to hide it by justifying it as “righteousness.” These characters are so fascinating and slip into your head, never leaving.  All of their lives intertwine in a highly dramatic manner. As they ask in the Disney film–“Who is the monster and who is the man?”

Uncategorized

Top Ten Thursday.

Top Ten Tuesday and its a freebie! I also meant to post this on Tuesday, so it’s a Top Ten Thursday post, haha. I was going to do something spooky but I really just wanted to do something fun and I decided I would list my top ten Harry Potter characters. And since it isn’t Halloween anymore…it doesn’t make much sense to do something spooky.

1. Hermione Granger. I saw a lot of myself in Hermione. That I’m a bookworm and I da282ace-4063-44b8-be42-a95428403fb2.giftend to follow the rules–unless I found/find a cause worthy enough to bend them. The bushy hair, the big front teeth–I had my adult teeth in and they stuck out for awhile there, lol. Really, the whole experience of being a girl who was bullied and wanting a friend or two, I felt it deep down. I’d been there. Not to mention growing up struggles! I love Hermione and I always will. She stood up for her beliefs (SPEW, anyone?) and wasn’t afraid to put hard work into things. She is definitely a bad ass.

2. Dumbledore. I know many people see him as being problematic because he never told84bd859e-fab6-46f2-b896-48e5efeb68ce1049539708.jpg Harry certain things until after he needed to know or not at all. But I trusted him and I still do. He was a flawed man as most are but I found him to be kind with good intentions and rather wise. Whether or not he is actually gay has never mattered to me. I always saw him as Dumbledore. Headmaster. Defender of Hogwarts. He saw wrongs and tried to right them. He was a good man.

3. Bellatrix Lestrange. I love an unrepentant villain and villainess. There is no denying 1eecce54-296e-4992-981d-3c75f426e149.gifthat Bella is one of those. I almost wish we had gotten more with her because I’d have no issues reading more about her earlier life, her years at Hogwarts and then as a Death Eater. She was so dark and mysterious, evil and as I said, unrepentant. I was disappointed when she died, because she was one of my favorites. (I know! What’s wrong with me?! Lol.)

60ee168e-efaa-49d6-8573-ddacf41dd3bc.gif

4. Hagrid. I find it impossible not to love Hagrid. I absolutely fell in love with his character from the first page we are introduced to him to the very last. (“Yer a wizard, Haree!”) His was a heart of gold and he was a fellow who you found you would be happy to call ‘friend’. As I wish he were real, I suspect that I am not alone in that.

5. Professor McGonagall. I said in a previous post that if ever I have a daughter, I would a200b70b-dade-4a09-a0f7-d4e236a19fb6.gifname her Minerva. I love her because she is a firm figure, one whom you could always reply upon. She was strong and wise, sassy and graceful. (Like a cat, one might say. 😂) she also had those unexpected moments where she could make you burst out loud with laughter.

6. Percival Graves. Whilst I realize we know little about him, Colin Farrell played him amazingly. He was a well dressed man, one who clearly knew his job and did it well. add3677e-a263-4ede-bb65-5f41e1d3a27c.gifHow did he become Seraphina Piquery’s right hand? How did he get his job at MACUSA? What house was he in at Illvermorny? Give me a life story, please! Haha. I need to know if he is dead or a prisoner. I really want to see Percival get revenge or at least to help rid the Wizarding World of Grindelwald. I admit I am also a teensy bit biased. I just really love Colin too.

 

9a3a5e7d-c824-4651-9fa1-f35d65aa6fe2.gif7. Luna Lovegood. I have so many friends who dislike Luna and I just can’t understand why. I adore Luna and perhaps its because I feel such a connection to her being so whimsical. She is a good hearted person, quirky but delightfully so. She means no harm to anyone and is really just a joy. I always enjoyed her, both in the book and on screen.

8. Draco Malfoy. The boy who had no choice. I truly believe that he was in possession of6d41d22e-ce50-4df1-bab0-63fc21b80b5c.gif a good and kind heart. However, the machinations and ambitions of his father made him think he had to have this hard shell that oozed confidence and made everyone believe in the superiority of the pureblood Malfoy family. I get the distinct impression that Narcissa encouraged that tender side of Draco. I always will believe that Draco grew to be a good man, a good father with no prejudice and that his mother had something to do with it.

9. Hogwarts. Does the school count as a character? Because it’s pretty vibrant and lively. 1de51f19-bf6a-4665-9514-31de31b80f3a.gifI always felt that it was a character in itself. A home away from home. I could envision myself there, could hear the students, the ghosts. I could feel the excitement as if I were heading into the Great Hall or to the common room. (Slytherin for me, cheers!) But you get what I mean. Hogwarts is more than a place. It has a heart, a pulse. It is just as alive as everyone and everything.

Whether you come back by page or by the big screen, Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.’ ― J.K. Rowling

10. Snape. Before anyone tells me what a horrible person he was, trust me, I know. I still 15ae0f0e-fdda-4ef9-8e4e-03b40eb35e2c.giffelt something for him. He was this terribly lonely boy who grew to be a bitter man because a lot of people were shitty to him. However, he was also horrible to people, so there’s that. Yet..despite this. He steps up when asked to be this double agent. It must have been undeniably hard for him. He is a cruel character and so very flawed but I still love him.

Uncategorized

Top Tuesday.

ttt-newThis week’s theme is villains and I’m so excited because I’m a lover of a good villain. I had to take my time in thinking about who I wanted to include here! I hope you enjoy my choices!

President Coin.

Aha, she was good. She had everyone believing that she was this paragon and this wonderful person, when in fact, she wasn’t at all. She was essentially gaining favor just to do the same thing over again.

“Alma Coin, the president of 13, who just watches. She’s fifty or so, with gray hair that

falls in an unbroken sheet to her shoulders. I’m somewhat fascinated by her hair, since it’s so uniform, so without a flaw, a wisp, even a split end. Her eyes are gray, but not like those of people from the Seam. They’re very pale, as if almost all the color has been sucked out of them. The color of slush that you wish would melt away.”

halloween_dividers_19

Judge Claude Frollo, “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”

“It would have been difficult to say what was the nature of this look, and whence

proceeded the flame that flashed from it. It was a fixed gaze, which was, nevertheless, full of trouble and tumult. And, from the profound immobility of his whole body, barely agitated at intervals by an involuntary shiver, as a tree is moved by the wind; from the stiffness of his elbows, more marble than the balustrade on which they leaned; or the sight of the petrified smile which contracted his face,— one would have said that nothing living was left about Claude Frollo except his eyes.”

Frollo is underrated as a villain. He is a Judge, a priest. And yet, he is all powerful. He is abusive to Quasimodo, cruel to the Gypsies–and everyone in general, really, and he presents himself as this paragon of virtue, which goes straight out the window once he falls for La Esmeralda. He would literally stop at nothing to have her. Some villains are superhuman, some aren’t human, but that’s what’s terrifying about Frollo. He’s someone we could possibly meet in our own lives. In the book he attempts to rape Esmeralda–who is only sixteen. He beats Quasimodo, is racist against the Romani (Gypsies) and he’s just a really shitty person.

“She felt a touch along her body which made her shudder so that she straightened herself up in a sitting posture, wide awake and furious. The priest had just slipped in beside her. He encircled her with both arms. She tried to scream and could not.”

halloween_dividers_19

Lord Voldemort.

My list wouldn’t be complete without him. There is no way of getting around the fact that

he is the ultimate villain. One with no redeeming qualities. He is a creature who has never known love and has never given it. It’s a foreign concept to him and there is nothing on earth that could compel him to understand it. He knew wrath, spite, hatred, and lust. A lust for immortality, for power…you understand. He was a monster in every sense.

“And his knowledge remained woefully incomplete, Harry! That which Voldemort does not

value, he takes no trouble to comprehend. Of house-elves and children’s tales, of love, loyalty, and innocence, Voldemort knows and understands nothing. Nothing. That they all have a power beyond his own, a power beyond the reach of any magic, is a truth he has never grasped…”–Dumbledore.

halloween_dividers_19

Pennywise.

Do I need to explain?! There’s a reason clowns terrify me and it goes back to childhood. Tim Curry freaked me out as Pennywise and Bill Skarsgard, I haven’t seen the movie for a reason, despite enjoying his work. Anyway. Yeah. Penny. (I should say his Tumblr fangirls who want to date Pennywise are creepy too.)

It held George’s arm in its thick and wormy grip, it pulled George toward that terrible darkness where the water rushed and roared and bellowed as it bore its cargo of storm debris toward the sea. George craned his neck away from that final blackness and began to scream into the rain, to scream mindlessly into the white autumn sky which curved above Derry on that day in the fall of 1957. His screams were shrill and piercing, and all up and down Witcham Street people came to their windows or bolted out onto their porches.

They float,’ it growled, ‘they float, Georgie, and when you’re down here with me, you’ll float, too. Everything down here floats,’ that chuckling, rotten voice whispered, and suddenly there was a ripping noise and a flaring sheet of agony, and George Denbrough knew no more.’

halloween_dividers_19

Professor Moriarty

“He is the Napoleon of crime, Watson. He is the organizer of half that is evil and of nearly all that is undetected in this great city, He is a genius, a philosopher, an abstract thinker. He has a brain of the first order. He sits motionless, like a spider in the center of its web, but that web has a thousand radiations, and he knows well every quiver of each of them. He does little himself. He only plans.”

Personally, I love Moriarty. I think he’s brilliant, which is the point. He rivals Sherlock.

He is, along with Irene Adler, his equal. Whereas Sherlock uses his mind for good–or to challenge himself–Moriarty is the “Napoleon of crime”, running the underground of the city for his own nefarious purposes–and simply because he can.

I love the literary version and also, of course, BBC Sherlock’s Andrew Scott. He plays an unhinged version and it’s really perfect. I also enjoyed Jared Harris’s performance of him in the RDJ Sherlock films.

I also find it amusing that in my family tree, there are some relatives with the surname Moriarty…so.

I am Moriarty. (kind of.)

halloween_dividers_19

Hannibal Lecter

“There is no consensus in the psychiatric community that Dr. Lecter should be termed a man. He has long been regarded by his professional peers in psychiatry, many of whom fear his acid pen in the professional journals, as something entirely Other. For convenience, they term him “monster”.

Again, I love this guy. When you think of a villain, he ought to come to mind. Both the

film version and the literary version are spine-tingling. I saw the movie before I read the books, but in this case, I don’t find it a deterrent. Anthony Hopkins played him perfectly. I could see him, hear him. He also added a level of humanity to him in certain moments, which struck me as terrifying. I never in my life thought I would feel any modicum of sympathy for a serial killing cannibal. What I also enjoyed was that he was a highly intelligent man, eloquent. Meeting him, you wouldn’t expect him to be this monster. He really drew you in.

halloween_dividers_19

Miss Trunchbull.

Matilda was one of my favorite stories when I was a kid; I also loved the movie. Miss th (3)514541048..jpgTrunchbull is the most terrifying sort of villain to a child. A principal for one and one who loathes children. She was bitchy for no other reason really beyond she could be. No one would stand up to her. (If she were real, my mother would have.) Known for her torment of students, a temper triggered by the most ridiculous things–a girl with her hair in pigtails (which is how I wore mine!) and just, ugh, a truly foul woman.

“She was a gigantic holy terror, a fierce, tyrannical monster who frightened the life out of pupils and teachers alike.”

A fun fact about the actress who played Ms. Trunchbull is that she played another odious woman on screen too. Fortunately, she also got her comeuppance at the hands of a kid with abilities.

Well done, Harry!

halloween_dividers_19

Dolores Umbridge.

Since I’m mentioning odious women, there was no way that Umbridge wasn’t getting mentioned. She is almost indescribably evil to me. I think Voldemort probably had more of a chance at redemption than she did, which is saying something. She is, like Trunchbull, cruel to children and hates them. Case in point, Harry Potter. Remember she made him do lines with a quill that literally drew his blood out as the ink, leaving him with ‘I Must Not Tell Lies’ on his arm. Obviously, he wasn’t the only student she did this to. She is cruel to those around her, such as Sybil Trelawney. Let’s not forget that she had all of her decrees and her own little narc squad.

They say her hatred stems from her Muggle-born mother and she became obsessed with purebloods and presenting herself as one, despite only being a half-blood herself. She took great glee in heading a department that allowed her to torture anyone who was Muggle-born. She has no redeeming qualities–not even that she likes cats.

When they entered the Defence Against the Dark Arts classroom they found Professor Umbridge already seated at the teacher’s desk, wearing the fluffy pink cardigan of the night before and the black velvet bow on top of her head. Harry was again reminded forcibly of a large fly perched unwisely on top of an even larger toad.

halloween_dividers_19

Frankenstein’s Monster

Let me begin by saying I see him as a villain, but not of his own making. Rather, I see him as being sort of forced into what he was. I see this ‘monster’ as being a victim of a man’s ego and ambition and also of humanity’s inability to accept someone who is different from them. Their cruelty to him makes him into the creature that he is; he began as an articulate, kind and caring creature.  Seriously. This is a quote from the ‘monster’.

“The words induced me to turn towards myself. I learned that the possessions most esteemed by your fellow creatures were high and unsullied descent united with riches. A man might be respected with only one of these advantages, but without either he was considered, except in very rare instances, as a vagabond and a slave, doomed to waste his powers for the profits of the chosen few! And what was I? Of my creation and creator I was absolutely ignorant, but I knew that I possessed no money, no friends, no kind of property. I was, besides, endued with a figure hideously deformed and loathsome; I was not even of the same nature as man. I was more agile than they and could subsist upon coarser diet; I bore the extremes of heat and cold with less injury to my frame; my stature far exceeded theirs. When I looked around I saw and heard of none like me. Was I, then, a monster, a blot upon the earth, from which all men fled and whom all men disowned?”

He became angry at his creation and went after Frankenstein’s family and friends, killing them, but again, I might do the same. He’s alone in this world. No one will ever really accept him, none will be like him.

halloween_dividers_19

Marquise de Merteuil.

“When I came out into society I was 15. I already knew that the role I was condemned to, namely to keep quiet and do what I was told, gave me the perfect opportunity to listen and observe. Not to what people told me, which naturally was of no interest, but to whatever it was they were trying to hide. I practiced detachment. I learned how to look cheerful while under the table I stuck a fork into the back of my hand. I became a virtuoso of deceit. It wasn’t pleasure I was after, it was knowledge. I consulted the strictest moralists to learn how to appear, philosophers to find out what to think, and novelists to see what I could get away with, and in the end, I distilled everything to one wonderfully simple principle: win or die.”

I love the story of Les Liasons Dangereuses, which literally translates to ‘Dangerous Liaisons’ in English. I saw the movie and then looked for the book. A rare case of the book and film being equally as good. The person I selected as my villain is the Marquise de Merteuill. Along with the Vicomte de Valmont, she seduces and corrupts younger courtiers. However, she is finally scorned by a lover–he breaks things off with her. This is a slight that she can’t forgive.  Using innocent people, the Marquise sets in motion a scandal that leaves her disgraced and Valmont dead. It really seemed like she had rid herself of all her rivals, however, Valmont and smallpox get the last laugh. It’s such a delightfully evil story, full of intrigue and everything one would expect of pre-French Revolution nobility.

 

Uncategorized

Top Ten Tuesday.

Untitled-3

I thought I’d do my own list, which is kind of late…haha. I just was distracted today. I was thinking about it and I thought I would do Books On My Wish List, which I saw someone else did and I don’t remember who. (If it was you, let me know so I can credit you with the idea!) Alright, so here we go!
9baf4-bookdivider

10. Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi. 

I’ve had this on my wishlist for sometime now. I’ve been wanting to read more about different races, different cultures and things like that. This one is definitely going to be next on my list of books to order.

Ghana, eighteenth century: two half-sisters are born into different villages, each unaware of the other. One will marry an Englishman and lead a life of comfort in the palatial rooms of the Cape Coast Castle. The other will be captured in a raid on her village, imprisoned in the very same castle, and sold into slavery.

Homegoing follows the parallel paths of these sisters and their descendants through eight generations: from the Gold Coast to the plantations of Mississippi, from the American Civil War to Jazz Age Harlem. Yaa Gyasi’s extraordinary novel illuminates slavery’s troubled legacy both for those who were taken and those who stayed—and shows how the memory of captivity has been inscribed on the soul of our nation.

9. Children of Blood and Bone (Legacy of Orisha) by Tomi Adeyemi 

Children of Blood and Bone (Legacy of Orisha) by [Adeyemi, Tomi]They killed my mother.
They took our magic.
They tried to bury us.

Now we rise.

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.

8. A Court of Frost and Starlight (A Court of Thorns and Roses) by Sarah J. Maas

Narrated by Feyre and Rhysand, this bridges the events in A Court of Wings and Ruin and the upcoming novels in the series.

Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve. Yet even the festive atmosphere can’t keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated–scars that will have a far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.

7. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo: A Novel by Taylor Jenkins Reid

In this entrancing novel “that speaks to the Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor in us all” (Kirkus Reviews), a legendary film actress reflects on her relentless rise to the top and the risks she took, the loves she lost, and the long-held secrets the public could never imagine.

Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now?

Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband has left her, and her professional life is going nowhere. Regardless of why Evelyn has selected her to write her biography, Monique is determined to use this opportunity to jumpstart her career.

Summoned to Evelyn’s luxurious apartment, Monique listens in fascination as the actress tells her story. From making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the ‘80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way, Evelyn unspools a tale of ruthless ambition, unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love. Monique begins to feel a very real connection to the legendary star, but as Evelyn’s story near its conclusion, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways.

6. The Summer Wives: A Novel by Beatriz Williams

The Summer Wives: A Novel by [Williams, Beatriz]New York Times bestselling author Beatriz Williams brings us the blockbuster novel of the season—an electrifying postwar fable of love, class, power, and redemption set among the inhabitants of an island off the New England coast . . .

In the summer of 1951, Miranda Schuyler arrives on elite, secretive Winthrop Island as a schoolgirl from the margins of high society, still reeling from the loss of her father in the Second World War. When her beautiful mother marries Hugh Fisher, whose summer house on Winthrop overlooks the famous lighthouse, Miranda’s catapulted into a heady new world of pedigrees and cocktails, status and swimming pools. Isobel Fisher, Miranda’s new stepsister—all long legs and world-weary bravado, engaged to a wealthy Island scion—is eager to draw Miranda into the arcane customs of Winthrop society.

But beneath the island’s patrician surface, there are really two clans: the summer families with their steadfast ways and quiet obsessions, and the working class of Portuguese fishermen and domestic workers who earn their living on the water and in the laundries of the summer houses. Uneasy among Isobel’s privileged friends, Miranda finds herself drawn to Joseph Vargas, whose father keeps the lighthouse with his mysterious wife. In summer, Joseph helps his father in the lobster boats, but in the autumn he returns to Brown University, where he’s determined to make something of himself. Since childhood, Joseph’s enjoyed an intense, complex friendship with Isobel Fisher, and as the summer winds to its end, Miranda’s caught in a catastrophe that will shatter Winthrop’s hard-won tranquility and banish Miranda from the island for nearly two decades.

Now, in the landmark summer of 1969, Miranda returns at last, as a renowned Shakespearean actress hiding a terrible heartbreak. On its surface, the Island remains the same—determined to keep the outside world from its shores, fiercely loyal to those who belong. But the formerly powerful Fisher family is a shadow of itself, and Joseph Vargas has recently escaped the prison where he was incarcerated for the murder of Miranda’s stepfather eighteen years earlier. What’s more, Miranda herself is no longer a naïve teenager, and she begins a fierce, inexorable quest for justice for the man she once loved . . . even if it means uncovering every last one of the secrets that bind together the families of Winthrop Island.

5. The Masterpiece: A Novel by Fiona Davis

The Masterpiece: A Novel by [Davis, Fiona]In her latest captivating novel, nationally bestselling author Fiona Davis takes readers into the glamorous lost art school within Grand Central Terminal, where two very different women, fifty years apart, strive to make their mark on a world set against them.

For the nearly nine million people who live in New York City, Grand Central Terminal is a crown jewel, a masterpiece of design. But for Clara Darden and Virginia Clay, it represents something quite different.

For Clara, the terminal is the stepping stone to her future, which she is certain will shine as the brightly as the constellations on the main concourse ceiling. It is 1928, and twenty-five-year-old Clara is teaching at the lauded Grand Central School of Art. A talented illustrator, she has dreams of creating cover art for Vogue, but not even the prestige of the school can override the public’s disdain for a “woman artist.” Brash, fiery, confident, and single-minded–even while juggling the affections of two men, a wealthy would-be poet and a brilliant experimental painter–Clara is determined to achieve every creative success. But she and her bohemian friends have no idea that they’ll soon be blindsided by the looming Great Depression, an insatiable monster with the power to destroy the entire art scene. And even poverty and hunger will do little to prepare Clara for the greater tragedy yet to come.

Nearly fifty years later, in 1974, the terminal has declined almost as sharply as Virginia Clay’s life. Full of grime and danger, from the smoke-blackened ceiling to the pickpockets and drug dealers who roam the floor, Grand Central is at the center of a fierce lawsuit: Is the once-grand building a landmark to be preserved, or a cancer to be demolished? For Virginia, it is simply her last resort. Recently divorced, she has just accepted a job in the information booth in order to support herself and her college-age daughter, Ruby. But when Virginia stumbles upon an abandoned art school within the terminal and discovers a striking watercolor hidden under the dust, her eyes are opened to the elegance beneath the decay. She embarks on a quest to find the artist of the unsigned masterpiece–an impassioned chase that draws Virginia not only into the battle to save Grand Central but deep into the mystery of Clara Darden, the famed 1920s illustrator who disappeared from history in 1931.

4. The Romanov Empress: A Novel by C.W Gortner 

The Romanov Empress: A Novel of Tsarina Maria Feodorovna by [Gortner, C.  W.]For readers of Philippa Gregory and Alison Weir comes a dramatic novel of the beloved Empress Maria, the Danish girl who became the mother of the last Russian Tsar.

Even from behind the throne, a woman can rule.

Narrated by the mother of Russia’s last tsar, this vivid, historically authentic novel brings to life the courageous story of Maria Feodorovna, one of Imperial Russia’s most compelling women, who witnessed the splendor and tragic downfall of the Romanovs as she fought to save her dynasty in its final years.

Barely nineteen, Minnie knows that her station in life as a Danish princess is to leave her family and enter into a royal marriage—as her older sister Alix has done, moving to  England to wed Queen Victoria’s eldest son. The winds of fortune bring Minnie to Russia, where she marries the Romanov heir, Alexander, and once he ascends the throne, becomes Empress. When resistance to his reign strikes at the heart of her family and the tsar sets out to crush all who oppose him, Minnie—now called Maria—must tread a perilous path of compromise in a country she has come to love.

Her husband’s death leaves their son Nicholas as the inexperienced ruler of a deeply divided and crumbling empire. Determined to guide him to reforms that will bring Russia into the modern age, Maria faces implacable opposition from Nicholas’s strong-willed wife, Alexandra, whose fervor has led her into a disturbing relationship with a mystic named Rasputin. As the unstoppable wave of revolution rises anew to engulf Russia, Maria will face her most dangerous challenge and her greatest heartache.

From the opulent palaces of St. Petersburg and the intrigue-laced salons of the aristocracy to the World War I battlefields and the bloodied countryside occupied by the Bolsheviks, C. W. Gortner sweeps us into the anarchic fall of an empire and the complex, bold heart of the woman who tried to save it.

3. The Prisoner in the Castle: A Maggie Hope Mystery by Susan Elia MacNeal

The Prisoner in the Castle: A Maggie Hope Mystery by [MacNeal, Susan Elia]A series of baffling murders among a group of imprisoned agents threatens the outcome of World War II in this chilling mystery from the New York Times bestselling author of Mr. Churchill’s Secretary.

World War II is raging and former spy Maggie Hope knows too much.

She knows what the British government is willing to do to keep its secrets.

She knows the real location of the planned invasion of France.

She knows who’s lying. She knows who the double-crossers are. She knows exactly who is sending agents to their deaths.

These are the reasons why Maggie is isolated on a remote Scottish island, in a prison known as Killoch Castle, out of contact with friends and family.

Then one of her fellow inmates drops dead in the middle of his after-dinner drink . . . and he’s only the first. As victims fall one by one, Maggie will have to call upon all her wits and skills to escape—not just certain death . . . but certain murder.

For what’s the most important thing Maggie Hope knows?

She must survive.

2. The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin

The Immortalists by [Benjamin, Chloe]If you knew the date of your death, how would you live your life?

It’s 1969 in New York City’s Lower East Side, and word has spread of the arrival of a mystical woman, a traveling psychic who claims to be able to tell anyone the day they will die. The Gold children—four adolescents on the cusp of self-awareness—sneak out to hear their fortunes.

The prophecies inform their next five decades. Golden-boy Simon escapes to the West Coast, searching for love in ’80s San Francisco; dreamy Klara becomes a Las Vegas magician, obsessed with blurring reality and fantasy; eldest son Daniel seeks security as an army doctor post-9/11; and bookish Varya throws herself into longevity research, where she tests the boundary between science and immortality.

A sweeping novel of remarkable ambition and depth, The Immortalists probes the line between destiny and choice, reality and illusion, this world and the next. It is a deeply moving testament to the power of story, the nature of belief, and the unrelenting pull of familial bonds.

1. Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

Spinning Silver by [Novik, Naomi]A fresh and imaginative retelling of the Rumpelstiltskin fairytale from the bestselling author of Uprooted, called “a very enjoyable fantasy with the air of a modern classic” by The New York Times Book Review.

Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders, but her father is not a very good one. Free to lend and reluctant to collect, he has left his family on the edge of poverty–until Miryem intercedes. Hardening her heart, she sets out to retrieve what is owed, and soon gains a reputation for being able to turn silver into gold. But when an ill-advised boast brings her to the attention of the cold creatures who haunt the wood, nothing will be the same again. For words have power, and the fate of a kingdom will be forever altered by the challenge she is issued.

Channeling the heart of the classic fairy tale, Novik deftly interweaves six distinct narrative voices–each learning valuable lessons about sacrifice, power and love–into a rich, multilayered fantasy that readers will want to return to again and again.

Uncategorized

#TopTenTuesday: I really read that?!

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. I’ve discovered a love of posting book tags and I love making lists, haha. So here I am. It’s Top Ten Tuesday and I have been dying to get back into it.

Untitled-1

Books I Can’t Believe I Read.
giphy

Fifty Shades Of Gray. I didn’t finish it. But I have no idea why I even tried. I don’t much like erotica, but I thought since my friends were obsessing over it, I’d give it a try. Silly me. There’s a reason I never took their suggestions when it came to books. A corpse would be more fascinating than Ana and don’t get me started on that abusive asshat, Christian Gray.
tumblr_mbrbisTVpr1rno750o1_500

Twilight. At the time, I liked it. However, as I’ve gotten older and reread it, I shake my head, thinking, “What the hell?” Bella is a Mary Sue and Edward was a stalker. Jacob had issues and well, the only one I liked a lot then and like now is Rosalie. Oh, and the Volturi. They were pretty boss, actually.
tumblr_nmm2b3iwj61sgcmdho1_500

 

The Manner of Amy’s Death. Holy dskfjal;. Yes, I mean to type that. This was one of the worst books I have ever read in my life. The characters were one dimensional, they were juvenile (you’re a courtier at Elizabeth I’s court and you’re gonna act like a 3-year-old? GTFO.) and…ugh. I have a review somewhere. It was pretty scathing. Think of this as one of those books someone must have been high when they approved it to be published.
giphy4

 

O, Africa! The author tried too hard at times in this one; using ridiculous words and phrasings that didn’t need to be used at all. He made me feel like he went to college and learned all of them and needed to show off that he knows big words. He was also keen on mentioning bodily functions and racist remarks. He used them so fluidly and frequently that I tend to wonder if that’s how he really feels.
tumblr_nl4u07hfuz1rosb88o1_500
Ruth’s Journey This is supposed to be told from Mammy’s perspective from GWTW. If it’s ever told? I’ll be here. I’m definitely waiting for it.
tumblr_mxfzhqatwz1qbgi86o1_250
Anne Boleyn: The King’s Obsession I’ve been pretty open about my hatred of this book, I won’t rehash it.giphy3
The Assassination of Marilyn Monroe This was another book that had me going, “I’m sorry, what?” I like conspiracy theories but this was poorly written.
american-idol-gifamerican-idol-quotesnicki-minaj
Daughter of the Sea: Abrupt, weird ending. No closure at all and just kind of lacking. tumblr_niwgblfiin1smcbm7o1_400
Captive Queen: A Novel of Eleanor of Aquitaine The book namely takes place in the bedroom. Eleanor is a strong historical figure, she shouldn’t be reduced to a mindless sex fiend.
cersei
The Yellow Wallpaper. Ya’ll. This gif says it ALL.
throwing-book

Uncategorized

Top Ten Tuesday!

Untitled-1

I thought it would be fun to make a list of my favorite books from when I was a little girl. I’ve been feeling nostalgic lately and I thought it’d be a lot of fun. I hope you guys will share some with me too!

  1. The American Girls series. You guys, I was SO in love with these books. Not only did agdolls1they have amazing books, the girls themselves were from different times and it revealed to me the struggles they endured and also how similar they were in having to overcome the situations they found themselves in. I loved Samantha and Felicity best–I still have my Samantha doll! They varied in period from Revolutionary America to World War II. I believe they’ve continued on from there and have added even more girls. I half wish I had a little girl of my own or a niece I could spoil with these! (And then I could read them too, haha.) I always wished they’d make an American Women series and write about them as grown ups.
  2. newsimg687The Babysitters Club. Okay, what girl wasn’t into BSC? It seemed like they were everywhere for awhile. A movie, a club, loads of books. I always loved Claudia because of her affinity for hiding junk food all over her room. I also thought she was very creative and that was something I aspired to. All of the girls were fascinating, but I admit….I never wanted to join a babysitters club!
  3. 6461George Washington’s Socks. I know the title sounds really stupid, but if memory serves correctly, the kids went back in time to Revolutionary America and were present to see the Battle of Trenton as well as Washington’s crossing. They met a coterie of characters and learned a lot about how America came to be. I remember my mom having to go to the DMV and we lived in NYC then–so you can imagine the line! I finished the book in one sitting. The title has always stuck with me.
  4. matildaMatilda. I found a kindred spirit in her. A girl who liked to read! And she could do magic–okay, I couldn’t do that. But to find a character who understood how I felt about reading was lovely. I’ve always had a soft spot for Roald Dahl books; I almost put James and the Giant Peach here, but Matilda definitely won out. The movie was also amazing, I loved Mara Wilson and Danny DeVito, both did a stellar job! A case of the film being just as good as the book.
  5. The Avonlea series. I wanted to become Sara Stanley’s friend in the worst way. Sheroad_to_avonlea__song_of_the_night_-_fiona_mchugh was such a free spirit and I just loved escaping to Prince Edward Island anytime I opened the book. Now, I know these aren’t the books by Lucy Maud Montgomery–but I read those too. I watched the television series with my family and when they discovered books based on the series, I had a new favorite series. I love Felicity King too. She was haughty and wonderful, in my opinion. I seemed to always love characters like that.
  6. little-house-booksLittle House series. I fell head over heels with the Little House series. It was actually a bit obsessive. I read all the books, I studied the family, loved the TV show. I was just fascinated by the Ingalls family and how they moved around to different places. Their struggles and triumphs. I even saw a play about her!
  7. 941b1e06449390c01d20d7fdd4692d8dHarry Potter. C’mon. We all know how I feel about Harry Potter! I couldn’t not include it here. I could write you a ten page essay, so I’ll just link my previous Harry post here.
  8. ds04-lMagic School Bus. Two words. Miss Frizzle! This was one of my favorite books and shows back in the day, which is saying something given my hatred of school. I always wished for a teacher like her and I definitely wanted amazing field trips like that. Except in the Human Body, even though that was my favorite book in the series. And the TV show! Speaking of, did you see there’s going to be a reboot? /So/ excited!
  9. 51lrfo3tqdl-_sx342_ql70_Sweet Valley High. I loved reading about the Wakefield twins adventures and mishaps, their dealing with growing up and boys. It’s been a long time since I thought about this one, wow! I also read the Sweet Valley twins books about when they were little girls. There was a tv show, if I remember too. I feel really old right now! Haha!
  10. 231850Corduroy . I made my parents read this to me ad nauseum. But I genuinely loved reading about this adventurous little bear who needed a button for his overalls. I’ve always just loved Teddy Bears, honestly. Another favorite bear story of mine? Paddington Bear and of course, Winnie The Pooh!

 

What were some of your favorite books as a child? Leave me comments below and tell me! I’d love to see if we read some of the same ones; ones I possibly have forgotten.

Uncategorized

Untitled-1

This weeks Top Ten is going to be the books I had the most trouble getting through. Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, which I just discovered from another blog on Twitter. So thank you to social networking!

Okay! Here we go!

25813965

I usually devour Ms. Moran’s books; I even have a few on my bookshelf. However, this time, I was sorely disappointed and I couldn’t finish. You would think a book about Mata Hari would be fascinating and would keep you entertained. Not the case this time. Though a short novel at 273 pages, I called quits at 50 pages. I found the writing not up to Ms. Moran’s usual par and the research didn’t seem as in depth as usual. What could have been a fascinating topic dragged on and I just couldn’t get into it.

18490831This book was supposed to be hilarious and charming. I thought it more fitting to donate it and never lay eyes upon it again. It was hyped up, but it didn’t deliver. I found the obsessive mentions of bodily functions and the racism too overpowering to be entertaining. Yes, I understand that this book is based in the 1920’s and racism was common. However, I felt maybe the author should have covered it in a way that didn’t make me feel like that was just his personal feelings. I also felt that he (Andrew Lewis Conn) tried too hard at times. He also used ridiculous words and phrasings that didn’t need to be used at all. He made me feel like he went to college and learned all of them and needed to show off that he knows big words. They’re tripe. Absolutely unnecessary in the long haul. This was a DNF…and an instant addition to the ‘donate to library’ box.

20934835

The writing to me was juvenile and lacked the finesse a Tudor/Elizabethan era novel should have. The characters were one dimensional and quite frankly, if the real Amy Dudley was as annoying as she is in the book, then I completely understand why Robert didn’t spend much time with her. She was given to tantrums and acting like a spoilt child rather than a wife of a courtier. She was spiteful and I spent most of the time wanting to slap her. I understand that she wanted more time with her husband, but that really wasn’t the way to accomplish that. The emphasis put on that it was a love match–Amy married rather high above her station–seemed ironic, since he couldn’t seem to tolerate being near her. Why the author chose to turn her into such an intolerable git in this book, I’m still pondering. Terrible, terrible writing.

 

22571611Far too predictable. Girl meets boy, girl dislikes boy, boy charms girl, girl falls for boy…blah blah. The boy in this case is William Shakespeare and he is the biggest tool. Katherine d’Lisle is essentially a doormat, having no endearing qualities in my opinion. Even when she discovers he’s lied to her, she can’t really pull herself away. it is very much a case of unrequited love because Will is in love with two things–himself and his work. Also, he tells her that he’s married but she believes they’ll go away together. (Seriously.) Far too disjointed, most of the characters were lackluster and honestly, I had to force myself to finish.

 

18404135I have rarely come upon any books with her as a main character and I was very excited to see that she was a main character. She is such a strong historical figure and a fascinating one at that; however, Ms. Goodwin disappointed me. Every single character seemed so…dull and lifeless. I found very little to like in any character, which made it very hard for me to get through it. It is a very loosely based story of Elisabeth ‘Sisi’, Empress of Austria when she visited England. Whilst I knew she had long hair and was thought of as pretty (which, I agree with!), it was maddening to hear very other moment about it. Also, putting meat on her face at night? That was rather vile. Whether that fact is true or not, I don’t know, but it was not very entertaining and just another thing I disliked. Sisi was made to be this vapid, bubble headed woman and I don’t think she was like that at all. Also, an Empress throwing childlike tantrums or sulk when she didn’t get her way. I really struggled with finishing.

25476259Lizzie Borden is one of history’s strangely fascinating people. There’s so much intrigue surrounding her–did she? Didn’t she? Thus, one would think her to be a good subject for a book. I must applaud Ms. Purdy for her obvious enthusiasm. However, that is about the most praise I can bestow.  I suppose that I, like most people, expect a more radicalised version or a version where we get chills down our spines and a good dark read. I didn’t get that here, much to my own disappointment. I found myself wishing someone would take an axe and smack Lizzie with it as she came off as an immature brat through most of the book. I would have liked to have seen more development of the. characters and the surroundings; to give more life to the story.  I was disappointed with this one.

21412403The story of Mammy from Gone With The Wind. I think I’ve posted before how much of a “windie” I am. When I had first heard this was coming out, I was absolutely delighted. Mammy is one of the central characters in the well beloved original and I love her. I thought to myself, “Oh boy! We’re going to get a good backstory on her! We’re going to learn this and that…blah blah, so forth and so on.” I had read Donald McCaig’s ‘Rhett Butler’s People’ and honestly, I enjoyed that, so I had no worries about Ruth’s Journey.

I should have taken it as a sign when I was denied for the ARC.

 

I wanted to be able to relate to her, however, she was quite unlikable I found; or at the 176265very least, her characterization made her rather unlikable. She was such a conflicted individual and I found I often wanted to reach into the book and smack her because as a child/young woman, she was intolerably rotten. Spoiled rotten and over-privileged…granted, I know that is how she was raised, but I just couldn’t believe her. And how she hooked Lincoln into marrying her…I know that this was just a dramatization but how dreadful of her. Also, I didn’t like how she complained about being poor. She knew when she married him that they’d be poor. Yet, hey, let’s go blow money on gowns that she didn’t need! Let’s buy furniture for the house they didn’t have yet! Let’s force Lincoln to work even harder and have nothing to show for it since people didn’t regularly pay him. I do appreciate the details; I like to hear about the hustle and bustle of towns, the detail of attire and I will give the author as much credit for that as I possibly can. Sadly, that is about as much praise as I can give and even that can be too much of a good thing. The scenes were repetitive; such long paragraphs about Mary Todd Lincoln feels and those way too frequent dream sequences…ad nausium is the term I’m thinking of here.

10818853

Need I say more?
I didn’t think so.

 

 

 

6101138

The title is misleading in that Wolf Hall was the home of the Seymours and there isn’t a great deal of them. Secondly, I found the writing choppier than the ocean on a blustery, windy day. Very, very disappointed.