Category Archives: Meme

Mailbox Monday

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, the weekly meme created by Marcia from A girl and her books (formerly The Printed Page) where book lovers share the titles they received for review, purchased, or otherwise obtained over the past week. Mailbox Monday is now  on tour, and this month’s host is Amused by Books. For review, I received the following three:

Mary Boleyn: The Mistress of Kings by Alison Weir

I have been coveting this biography on Henry VIII’s famous mistress for quite awhile, and now that it is finally here, I am swamped with books to read. Of course.
From Ballantime Books, October 4, 2011:
 Mary Boleyn (c.1500-1543) was no less fascinating than her ill-fated queen consort sister Anne. In fact, her own claims to fame are numerous: She was not only an influential member of King Henry VIII’s court circle; she was one of his mistresses and perhaps the mother of two of his children. In addition, the apparently prolific Mary was rumored to have been also a mistress of the King’s rival, Francis I of France. Alison Weir’s Mary Boleyn substantially redeems her subject’s reputation by disputing her scandalous portrayal in Philippa Gregory’s novel The Other Boleyn Girl. Our most detailed view yet of a power behind the throne. (P.S. With titles like Elizabeth and The Lady in the Tower, Weir has carved out a niche as one of the foremost biographers of British royalty).

Alison Weir will also soon visit the USA for her book tour, visit her site for an updated list of dates.

Catherine the Great by Robert K. Massie
I have heard great things about this author, but haven’t had the chance to read any of his work thus far. I have read that this new biography reads like a novel, and since I know nothing of Catherine the Great, I am intrigued!
From Random House, November 8, 2011:

The Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Peter the Great, Nicholas and Alexandra, and The Romanovs returns with another masterpiece of narrative biography, the extraordinary story of an obscure young German princess who traveled to Russia at fourteen and rose to become one of the most remarkable, powerful, and captivating women in history.

Born into a minor noble family, Catherine transformed herself into Empress of Russia by sheer determination. Possessing a brilliant mind and an insatiable curiosity as a young woman, she devoured the works of Enlightenment philosophers and, when she reached the throne, attempted to use their principles to guide her rule of the vast and backward Russian empire. She knew or corresponded with the preeminent historical figures of her time: Voltaire, Diderot, Frederick the Great, Empress Maria Theresa of Austria, Marie Antoinette, and, surprisingly, the American naval hero, John Paul Jones.

Reaching the throne fired by Enlightenment philosophy and determined to become the embodiment of the “benevolent despot” idealized by Montesquieu, she found herself always contending with the deeply ingrained realities of Russian life, including serfdom. She persevered, and for thirty-four years the government, foreign policy, cultural development, and welfare of the Russian people were in her hands. She dealt with domestic rebellion, foreign wars, and the tidal wave of political change and violence churned up by the French Revolution that swept across Europe. Her reputation depended entirely on the perspective of the speaker. She was praised by Voltaire as the equal of the greatest of classical philosophers; she was condemned by her enemies, mostly foreign, as “the Messalina of the north.”

Catherine’s family, friends, ministers, generals, lovers, and enemies—all are here, vividly described. These included her ambitious, perpetually scheming mother; her weak, bullying husband, Peter (who left her lying untouched beside him for nine years after their marriage); her unhappy son and heir, Paul; her beloved grandchildren; and her “favorites”—the parade of young men from whom she sought companionship and the recapture of youth as well as sex. Here, too, is the giant figure of Gregory Potemkin, her most significant lover and possible husband, with whom she shared a passionate correspondence of love and separation, followed by seventeen years of unparalleled mutual achievement.

The story is superbly told. All the special qualities that Robert K. Massie brought to Nicholas and Alexandra and Peter the Great are present here: historical accuracy, depth of understanding, felicity of style, mastery of detail, ability to shatter myth, and a rare genius for finding and expressing the human drama in extraordinary lives.

History offers few stories richer in drama than that of Catherine the Great. In this book, this eternally fascinating woman is returned to life.

And now for some fiction, His Last Duchess by Gabrielle Kimm:

The chilling story of Lucrezia de Medici, duchess to Alfonso d’Este, His Last Duchess paints a portrait of a lonely young girl and her marriage to an inscrutable duke. Lucrezia longs for love, Alfonso desperately needs an heir, and in a true story of lust and dark decadence, the dramatic fireworks the marriage kindles threaten to destroy the duke’s entire inheritance-and Lucrezia’s future. His Last Duchess gorgeously brings to life the passions and people of sixteenth-century Tuscany and Ferrara.

Originally published in 2010, Sourcebooks is reissuing for October 2011 publication.  I am intrigued to see how this one differs from Loupas’ The Second Duchess, which I really enjoyed.

Which of these titles has caught your eye? I am looking forward to all of these!



Filed under 2011 Releases, Alison Weir, Catherine The Great, Lucrezia Borgia, Mailbox Monday, Mary Boleyn, Meme, Tudor


Something a little fun and different today… Today is CAT THURSDAY over at the True Book Addict’s site.. and she says every second Thursday she’ll feature Authors and their without further ado..
Future AUTHOR!! ME!!!

Now THAT’S really LOL, right?!
But there I am reading one of my fave authors, Georgette Heyer.
Pictured is Sweetie, our cutie pie we adopted in May. She has quickly attached herself to me. She sees me sitting anywhere and she rockets right to me because she knows she’ll get some loving (and safe haven from four year olds!).

If you want to see more cat pictures from today’s link-up, visit the True Book Addict!


Filed under Cat Thursday, Meme

Saturday Snapshot

To participate in the Saturday Snapshot meme post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken, post it to your blog, and link it up to Alyce’s blog At Home With Books.

June 2011
June 2011

Time flies.. summer is almost gone.. taking with it fleeting memories of nature’s freedom

Quick .. catch him while you can..

As we prepare for the autumnal changes and wait for the season’s majestic hues.


Filed under Meme, Saturday Snapshot

Saturday Snapshot

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by At Home With Books.
To participate in the Saturday Snapshot meme this week, post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken and then leave a direct link to your post at Alyce’s blog here.

And here are my four snapshots where you can see a little piece of my world. These were all taken 6-4-2011 in a pretty elusive attempt to follow a family of cardinals we have. As you can see, I was only able to snap the daddy cardinal sitting still. Enjoy!

I love this little girl statue as she watches over my lantana flowers.

and here is the one semi-focused snapshot of Monsieur Cardinal. Can you see him?

See the airplane?
Pears, anyone?

I hope you enjoyed these pictures! I also wanted to take a moment to close out the giveaway I had running for Happily Ever After edited by John Klima where I asked for really witty comments. I think I picked the most creative comment EVER.. by choosing::

My dear Lady Marie of the House of Burton,

I wholeheartedly accept entry into this very merry giveaway. Why, some of my most beloved authors’ works are in this enchanted book. As one who constantly wanders about in Story looking for enjoyable tales, I can assure you that this magical book would give a good home with me in the shire of Pennsylvania.

I only learned of the Kingdom of Burton Book Reviews this evening, and have signed up to receive your dispatches on my RSS Feed, made a treaty with your kingdom on Facebook, and joined your alliance via GFC.

I thank you for your time, Lady Marie, and hope you find this scroll delivered via messenger most pleasing. Fare thee well!

Sincerely Yours,
Amy of Backseat Writer

Thanks to Amy for such an entertaining comment, you are my winner!!


Filed under Meme, Saturday Snapshot

>Mailbox Monday~ Half Price Books!


My Fantastic Haul!Happiness is… bags of books to read, but no review requirements..

Mailbox Monday is hosted by Marcia at The Printed Page. We share what books that we found in our mailboxes last week. And I am adding what I purchased, swapped, etc.

This week I went shopping at Half Price Books, courtesy of my $100 gift card for my anniversary. I love my husband!! I left $11 on the card so I have an excuse to go back again.

I purchased TWO BAGS of books: ((squueeee!!!)) All of the books in the photo above are from me to me. There is one last book listed at the bottom that I received through the Shelf Awareness program for review.

Court Lady and Country Wife: Two Noble Sisters in Seventeenth-Century England by Lita-Rose Betcherman (10/2005)

“Born during the prominence at the court of Charles I. Lucy, the Countess of Carlisle, dominated the royal scene. Her beauty was immortalized in magnificent Van Dyck portraits, her political skills attracted many famous lovers, and her talent as a gossip ensured her inclusion in the queen’s inner circle—until civil war and its machinations led to her imprisonment in the Tower of London.

Her sister, Dorothy, Countess of Leicester—wife of a diplomat and an ancestor of Princess Diana—managed the family estates and raised twelve surviving children. Though brilliant, with a keen eye and special purview of European politics, she had a reputation as a shrewish wife and, when her husband rebelled after thirty-five years of marriage, it caused a public scandal.

Viewing a tempestuous era through the exceptional lives of Lucy and Dorothy Percy, Lita-Rose Betcherman’s Court Lady and Country Wife offers a perfect window into a remarkable world.”

Drake by Stephen J. Coote (2003)DRAKE
“Sir Francis Drake: pirate, explorer and Protestant zealot, a man princely in his bearing, heroic if sometimes foolhardy in his enterprise, a genius at once awe-inspiring and riddled with faults. He is the archetypal Elizabethan sea-dog, and Stephen Coote’s brilliant new book rescues him from the dusty pages of history to breathe new life into one of the great maritime adventure stories. Focusing on the episodes that made Drake’s reputation — and exploring not just the nature of that reputation but how it also, for better or worse, came to epitomise a sense of nationhood — Stephen Coote re-creates all the excitement and terror of the raids on Spanish Caribbean ports during Drake’s privateering days; the extraordinary feat of the circumnavigation aboard the ‘Golden Hind’; and Drake’s role in the famous defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588. Told with novelistic verve, DRAKE is a thoroughly modern re-assessment of a man who embodied all the ebullient courage and personal shortcomings of the great age of Elizabethan expansion. Was Drake just a rabid anti-papist, a state-sponsored terrorist and slaver? Or was he the embodiment of English sang-froid, an empire-builder and hero? This gripping and entertaining biography gives us a picture of the man altogether richer and more interesting than we could have imagined.”

A Royal Affair: George III and His Scandalous Siblings by Stella Tillyard (2006, pictured in the middle of my photo at top)
“The acclaimed author of Aristocrats returns with a major new book that reveals the story of a regal family plagued by scandal and notoriety and trapped by duty, desire, and the protocols of royalty.History remembers King George III of England as the mad monarch who lost America. But as a young man, this poignant figure set aside his own passions in favor of a temperate life as guardian to both his siblings and his country. He would soon learn that his prudently cultivated harmony would be challenged by the impetuous natures of his sisters and brothers, and by a changing world in which the very instituation of monarchy was under fire.

At the heart of Stella Tillyard’s intimate and vivid account is King George’s sister Caroline Mathilde. Married against her will at fifteen to the ailing king of Denmark, she broke all the rules by embarking on an affair with a radical young court doctor. Their rash experiment in free living ended in imprisonment, death, and exile and almost led their two countries to war.
Around this tragedy are woven the stories of King George’s scandalous brothers, who squandered their time and titles partying and indulging in disastrous relationships that the gossip-hungry press was all too delighted to report.

Historians have always been puzzled by George’s refusal to give up on America, which forced his government to drag out the Revolutionary War long after it was effectively lost. Tillyard suggests that the king, seeing the colonists as part of his family, sought to control them in the same way he had attempted to rule his younger siblings.In this brilliantly interpretive biography, Stella Tillyard conjures up a Georgian world of dynastic marriages, headstrong royals, and radical new ideas. A compelling story of private passions and public disgrace, rebellion and exile, A Royal Affair brings to life the dramatic events that served as a curtain-raiser to the revolutions that convulsed two continents.”

Murder of a Medici Princess by Caroline P. Murphy (2008)Murder of a Medici Princess “In Murder of a Medici Princess, Caroline Murphy illuminates the brilliant life and tragic death of Isabella de Medici, one of the brightest stars in the dazzling world of Renaissance Italy, the daughter of Duke Cosimo I, ruler of Florence and Tuscany.
Murphy is a superb storyteller, and her fast-paced narrative captures the intrigue, the scandal, the romantic affairs, and the violence that were commonplace in the Florentine court. She brings to life an extraordinary woman, fluent in five languages, a free-spirited patron of the arts, a daredevil, a practical joker, and a passionate lover. Isabella, in fact, conducted numerous affairs, including a ten-year relationship with the cousin of her violent and possessive husband. Her permissive lifestyle, however, came to an end upon the death of her father, who was succeeded by her disapproving older brother Francesco. Considering Isabella’s ways to be licentious and a disgrace upon the family, he permitted her increasingly enraged husband to murder her in a remote Medici villa. To tell this dramatic story, Murphy draws on a vast trove of newly discovered and unpublished documents, ranging from Isabella’s own letters, to the loose-tongued dispatches of ambassadors to Florence, to contemporary descriptions of the opulent parties and balls, salons and hunts in which Isabella and her associates participated. Murphy resurrects the exciting atmosphere of Renaissance Florence, weaving Isabella’s beloved city into her story, evoking the intellectual and artistic community that thrived during her time. Palaces and gardens in the city become places of creativity and intrigue, sites of seduction, and grounds for betrayal.
Here then is a narrative of compelling and epic proportions, magnificent and alluring, decadent and ultimately tragic.”

The Secret History of the Pink Carnation (Pink Carnation, #1)by Lauren Willig

WHO IS THE PINK CARNATION? Eloise Kelly was looking for answers to one of history’s greatest mysteries, but found something even better: Intrigue. Espionage. Romance. Swordplay. Comedy.»Learn More…

The Deception of the Emerald Ring (Pink Carnation, #3)by Lauren Willig Rebellion is brewing in Ireland, egged on by the unquenchable Black Tulip. The Pink Carnation and Geoffrey Pinchingdale-Snipe (formerly of the League of the Purple Gentian) are on the case. But as the Irish uprising draws nearer and the Black Tulip grows bolder, Geoff finds himself struggling with a very different sort of problem. An unexpected wife.»Learn More

The Seduction of the Crimson Rose
The Seduction of the Crimson Rose (Pink Carnation, #4)by Lauren Willig
Determined to secure another London season without assistance from her new brother-in-law, Mary Alsworthy accepts a secret assignment from Lord Vaughn on behalf of the Pink Carnation: to infiltrate the ranks of the dreaded French spy, the Black Tulip, before he and his master can stage their planned invasion of England.»Learn More…

I have resisted these books for a long time, but since book #2 (Black Tulip) is on the way from Swaptree I figured I may as well buy some of the others. The last one (The Betrayal of the Blood Lily (Pink Carnation, #6) is to be released January 2010.

The Passion of Artemisia (Paperback) by Susan Vreeland (2002) “Recently rediscovered by art historians, and one of the few female post-Renaissance painters to achieve fame during her own era, Artemisia Gentileschi led a remarkably “modern” life. Susan Vreeland tells Artemisia’s captivating story, beginning with her public humiliation in a rape trial at the age of eighteen, and continuing through her father’s betrayal, her marriage of convenience, motherhood, and growing fame as an artist. Set against the glorious backdrops of Rome, Florence, Genoa, and Naples, inhabited by historical characters such as Galileo and Cosimo de’ Medici II, and filled with rich details about life as a seventeenth-century painter, Vreeland creates an inspiring story about one woman’s lifelong struggle to reconcile career and family, passion and genius.”

A Long Fatal Love Chase A Long Fatal Love Chase by Louisa May Alcott “Rosamond Vivian, brought up on a remote island by an indifferent grandfather, swears she’d sell her soul to Satan for a year of freedom. When Philip Tempest enters her life, she is ripe for the plucking, but is soon caught up in a web of intrigue, cruelty and deceit stretching back far into the past. Remarkable for its portrayal of a sensual, spirited Victorian heroine, Louisa May Alcott’s work, too shocking to be published during her lifetime, tells a compulsive tale of love, desire and deceit. Its publication more than a century after being written marks a new page in literary history.”

And I also couldn’t resist two books that had garnered alot of publicity:

The Shack by William P. Young (2007) “Mackenzie Allen Philips’ youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later in the midst of his Great Sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend.”

Olive Kitteridge: A Novel in Stories by Elizabeth Strout
“At times stern, at other times patient, at times perceptive, at other times in sad denial, Olive Kitteridge, a retired schoolteacher, deplores the changes in her little town of Crosby, Maine, and in the world at large, but she doesn’t always recognize the changes in those around her: a lounge musician haunted by a past romance; a former student who has lost the will to live; Olive’s own adult child, who feels tyrannized by her irrational sensitivities; and her husband, Henry, who finds his loyalty to his marriage both a blessing and a curse.

As the townspeople grapple with their problems, mild and dire, Olive is brought to a deeper understanding of herself and her life–sometimes painfully, but always with ruthless honesty. Olive Kitteridge offers profound insights into the human condition–its conflicts, its tragedies and joys, and the endurance it requires.”

And last but not least from my shopping glee:
Jane Austen: Her Life by Park Honan (2008)
Jane Austen: Her Life
“Drawing on diaries, memoirs, and letters written by members of the Austen family, this sympathetic and probing biography enters the private world of Jane Austen, revealing experiences and observations she drew upon to write such masterpieces as Northanger Abbey, Persuasion, Pride and Prejudice, and Sense and Sensibility. Austen’s childhood is recreated, sketching her devotion to her ambitious parents and drawing a lively picture of Jane’s two brothers—one of whom served with Nelson’s navy at Trafalgar—and of Jane’s closest confidante, her elder sister Cassandra. Set against a backdrop of rural Hampshire and Bath, Austen’s life moves between a closely observed domestic setting with family and friends to descriptions of dances and parties, social mores, and malice. This account brings new insights into her checkered love life, her moments of loneliness and frustration, and her ironic appreciation of her situation as an intelligent, economically dependent woman.”

And from Swaptree I received:

The Fool’s Tale by Nicole Galland “Wales, 1198. A time of treachery, passion, and uncertainty. King Maelgwyn ap Cadwallon, known as Noble, struggles to protect his small kingdom from foes outside and inside his borders. Pressured into a marriage of political convenience, he takes as his bride the young, headstrong Isabel Mortimer, niece of his powerful English nemesis.
Through strength of character, Isabel wins her husband’s grudging respect, but finds the Welsh court backward and barbaric, and is soon engaged in a battle of wills against Gwirion, the king’s oldest, oddest, and most trusted friend. Before long, however, Gwirion and Isabel’s mutual animosity is abruptly transformed, and the king finds himself as threatened by loved ones as by the enemies who menace his crown.
A masterful novel by a gifted storyteller, The Fool’s Tale combines vivid historical fiction, compelling political intrigue, and passionate romance to create an intimate drama of three individuals bound — and undone — by love and loyalty.”

The one book that I did receive from the publisher, and almost forgot about (ooops!)

Fireworks over Toccoa by Jeffrey Stepakoff (April 2010)

Every so often that story comes along that reminds us of what it’s like to experience love for the first time—against the odds, when you least expect it, and with such passion that it completely changes you forever.
An unexpected discovery takes eighty-four-year-old Lily Davis Woodward to 1945, and the five days that forever changed her life. Married for only a week before her husband was sent to fight in WWII, Lily is anxious for his return, and the chance to begin their life together. In honor of the soldiers’ homecoming, the small Georgia town of Toccoa plans a big celebration. And Jake Russo, a handsome Italian immigrant, also back from war, is responsible for the elaborate fireworks display the town commissioned. But after a chance encounter in a star-lit field, he steals Lily’s heart and soul–and fulfills her in ways her socially-minded, upper-class family cannot. Now, torn by duty to society and her husband–and the poor, passionate man who might be her only true love–Lily must choose between a commitment she’s already made and a love she’s never known before.
Fireworks Over Toccoa takes us to a moment in time that will resonate with readers long after the book’s unforgettable conclusion. A devastating and poignant story, this debut novel will resonate with anyone who believes in love.”

And now I am in DIRE need for that other bookcase.


Filed under Austen, Lauren Willig, Louisa May Alcott, Mailbox Monday, Meme

>Teaser Tuesday~Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy


TEASER TUESDAYS is hosted by ShouldBeReading and asks you to:
♠Grab your current read.
♠Let the book fall open to a random page.
♠Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page.
♠You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
Please avoid spoilers!

“Elizabeth’s reaction was even more curious as she turned to stare at her husband, her cheeks nearly scarlet. It seemed to take her a moment to find her voice then she said archly, “I was of the opinion that some gentlemen appreciate a lady’s blushes.” ~page 203

Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy: The Last Man in the World by Abigail Reynolds. (Released Jan. 1, 2010)

See my review, and the Guest Post with Giveaway starts today!! 2 winners!!

Bookmark and Share


Filed under Abigail Reynolds, Meme, Teaser Tuesdays

>Booking Through Thursday: HISTORY!!!!!


Given the choice, which do you prefer? Real history? Or historical fiction? (Assume, for the purposes of this discussion that they are equally well-written and engaging.)

OH MY!! My favorite topic. History is my favorite genre to read about, both fiction and non-fiction alike!! I have read much more historical fiction over non-fiction, but it is simply because that is what has been available to me to review this year.

I have read and reviewed some wonderful non-fiction this year, such as Anne Frank Remembered: The Story of the Woman who Helped Hide the Frank Family by Miep Gies, Elizabeth’s Women by Tracy Borman and The Lady in the Tower: The Fall of Anne Boleyn by Alison Weir. And given the choice.. at this point I would really like to read a lot more NON-FICTION! I love the Tudor and Stuart eras in England, and I would really like to branch out this year to include more of Europe and ultimately the United States.

I have some biographies on my shelf such as Harry S. Truman and Mary Todd Lincoln that I would like to read, and I would like to read more on Louisa May Alcott.

I have read a lot of historical fiction this year (see all my reviews listed here) and in 2010 there are some more promising historical fiction works being published. So, I predict I will still be reading a lot more historical fiction rather than non-fiction in 2010 because of the abundance of new releases.

Merry Christmas to everyone who celebrates it!!!


Filed under Book Thursday, Meme, Review, Tudor, Why I Blog

>Teaser Tuesday~ Between Two Queens by Kate Emerson


TEASER TUESDAYS is hosted by ShouldBeReading and asks you to:
♠Grab your current read.
♠Let the book fall open to a random page.
♠Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page.
♠You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
Please avoid spoilers!

“It was a pity that her opportunity had been lost, but she was no worse off than she had been and she’d been spared the onerous task of pretending, night after night, perhaps for years, that the king was a wonderful lover. Perhaps she’d had a lucky escape.”~p. 190


Filed under Kate Emerson, Meme, Teaser Tuesdays, Tudor

>Mailbox Monday Time!


Mailbox Monday

Mailbox Monday is hosted by Marcia at The Printed Page. We share what books that we found in our mailboxes last week. And I am adding what I purchased, swapped, etc.

From Paperbackswap:
My Dream of You My Dream of You by Nuala O’Faolain

This compelling novel by Nuala O’Faolain intertwines the stories of two women, an Irish travel writer living in present-day London, and a British landowner’s wife during the 19th century potato famine, who was convicted of committing adultery with an Irish groom.

A lovely heartbreaker of a novel that asks the hard questions…O’Faolain writes beautifully about longing and regret.” (USA Today)

“One of the finest achievements of the book is its unflinching, empathetic depiction of just how it feels…to experience the chill clutch of the thought that the rest of one’s life might be empty of love, sex, intimate human contact…a fully rendered portrait.” (The New York Times Book Review)

Fallen Skies
Fallen Skies by Philippa Gregory

“Now back in print from New York Times bestselling author Philippa Gregory, Fallen Skies takes readers to post-World War I England in a suspenseful story about the marriage of a wealthy war hero and an aspiring singer he barely knows.

Lily Valance is determined to forget the horrors of the war by throwing herself into the decadent pleasures of the 1920s and pursuing her career as a music hall singer. When she meets Captain Stephen Winters, a decorated veteran, she’s immediately drawn to his wealth and status. And Stephen, burdened by his guilt over surviving the Flanders battlefields where so many soldiers perished, sees the possibility of forgetting his anguish in Lily, but his family does not approve.

Lily marries Stephen, only to discover that his family’s facade of respectability conceals a terrifying combination of repression, jealousy and violence. When Stephen’s terrors merge dangerously close with reality, the truth of what took place in the mud and darkness brings him and all who love him to a terrible reckoning.”

Above is a picture of my Georgette Heyer’s that I purchased via Ebay. The pink one is “Venetia” and that one is from 1958. Pretty old! The lot was a total of 28 books.
My Heyer collection now includes:
A Blunt Instrument
A Civil Contract
An Infamous Army
Behold, Here’s Poison
The Toll-Gate
The Black Moth
These Old Shades
Devil’s Cub
The Corinthian
The Grand Sophy
The Masqueraders
The Convenient Marriage
The Nonesuch
Powder & Patch
Envious Casca
Footsteps in The Dark
No Wind of Blame
Why Shoot A Butler
They Found Him Dead
Detection Unlimited
Duplicate Death
The Unfinished Clue
Charity Girl
Death in the Stocks
Faro’s Daughter
Fridays Child
The Spanish Bride
The Conqueror
Royal Escape
Regency Buck
My Lord John

Shown above were purchased by me at my local bookstore & the 3 on the right are for review:

Firedrake’s Eye by Patricia Finney (1998)

Brilliantly written in language eerily reminiscent of sixteenth-century England and filled with the dazzling color and drama of Tudor England, Firedrake’s Eye concerns a meticulously constructed plot to kill Queen Elizabeth I. Tom O’Bedlam, the mad son of prominent Catholic family, stumbles upon evidence that his hated brother has returned to England to spearhead a scheme to assassinate the Queen. Patricia Finney transports the reader back in time to the dirty, dangerous underbelly of 1583 London. Combining accurate and detailed historical research with story-telling of an unusually high caliber, Firedrake’s Eye brilliantly evokes that danger and treachery of Tudor politics.”

Unicorn’s Blood by Patricia Finney (1999)
Patricia Finney’s outstanding literary thriller plunges into the vivid and deadly world of the 16th century: from the torture chambers of the Tower to the elegant artifice of court life; from the bawdy-houses of Southwark to the Queen’s own bed. Why are the Jesuits, the Queen’s Puritan councillors and even the Queen herself searching for the mysterious Book of the Unicorn? What ancient scandal threatens Elizabeth Tudor as she fights to avoid executing her cousin, Mary Queen of Scots? And what of the man waking up in the dungeon with no memory of who he is? David Becket and Simon Ames, the two mismatched heroes of FIREDRAKE’S EYE find themselves unwillingly in the thick of the struggle to unravel the plot.”

Mapping the Edge by Sarah Dunant

Anna, a self-sufficient and reliable single mother, packs her bags one day for a short vacation to Italy. She leaves her beloved daughter at home in London with good friends. When Anna doesn’t return, everyone begins to make excuses, until the likelihood that she might not come back at all becomes chillingly clear. In this dazzling work of suspense, Sarah Dunant interweaves parallel narratives that are stretched taut with tension even as they raise difficult questions about love, trust, and accountability. We are challenged, unnerved, and ultimately exhilarated as Dunant redefines the boundaries of the psychological thriller.”

From the author of A Separate Country, released 2009, this is his previous work:

The Widow of the South by Robert Hicks

In 1894 Carrie McGavock is an old woman who has only her former slave to keep her company…and the almost 1,500 soldiers buried in her backyard. Years before, rather than let someone plow over the field where these young men had been buried, Carrie dug them up and reburied them in her own personal cemetery. Now, as she walks the rows of the dead, an old soldier appears. It is the man she met on the day of the battle that changed everything. The man who came to her house as a wounded soldier and left with her heart. He asks if the cemetery has room for one more.

In an extraordinary debut novel, based on a remarkable true story, Robert Hicks draws an unforgettable, panoramic portrait of a woman who, through love and loss, found a cause. Known throughout the country as “the Widow of the South,” Carrie McGavock gave her heart first to a stranger, then to a tract of hallowed ground – and became a symbol of a nation’s soul.”

From Sourcebooks to review:

The Stolen Crown: The Secret Marriage that Forever Changed the Fate of England by Susan Higginbotham
On May Day, 1464, six-year-old Katherine Woodville, daughter of a duchess who has married a knight of modest means, awakes to find her gorgeous older sister, Elizabeth, in the midst of a secret marriage to King Edward IV. It changes everything—for Kate and for England.
Then King Edward dies unexpectedly. Richard III, Duke of Gloucester, is named protector of Edward and Elizabeth’s two young princes, but Richard’s own ambitions for the crown interfere with his duties…
Lancastrians against Yorkists: greed, power, murder, and war. As the story unfolds through the unique perspective of Kate Woodville, it soon becomes apparent that not everyone is wholly evil—or wholly good.”

Young Bess (Book one in the Good Queen Bess trilogy) by Margaret Irwin, this is a reissue by Sourcebooks. Originally published 1944.

This first of Irwin’s trilogy about Elizabeth traces her early life from the execution of her mother, Anne Boleyn, to Bess’s banishment from her Henry VIII’s court, to the intrigues of Tom Seymour and the death of her brother, Edward VI.”

From Simon & Schuster to Review:
Eve of the Isle by Carol Rivers
January 1928, the Isle of Dogs. Following the mysterious disappearance of her sailor husband (missing, presumed drowned), young widow Eve Kumar struggles to provide for herself and her twin sons. But her flower-selling business is destroyed overnight when the Thames floods its banks, wrecking Eve’s ramshackle riverside cottage and forcing her to take refuge with the lecherous Harold Slygo and his drunken wife. As Eve’s home life turns from bad to worse, she is befriended by a young constable, Charlie Merritt, who shares Eve’s growing suspicions that her husband’s death was no accident. But Eve and Charlie’s investigations are attracting unwelcome attention – and when Eve herself disappears, it becomes clear there are those who would go to any lengths to ensure the truth remains buried. Will Charlie be able to save the woman he has grown to love?”


Filed under Mailbox Monday, Meme, Phillippa Gregory

>Booking Through Thursday~ Mark The Spot


Booking Through Thursday is hosted by Deb:
What items have you ever used as a bookmark? What is the most unusual item you’ve ever used or seen used?

I use a regular bookmark 98% of the time, which is typical of the one seen here.

My current favorite since my birthday in July is a bookmark with the image of Ophelia by John William Waterhouse, which I received from fellow HF Fanatic Arleigh. I have made some bookmarks, and I gave one to my mom, but that’s as far as they have gotten as far as being productively used.

If said typical bookmark of mine is somehow lost (such as when I fall asleep in bed), then I find a temporary placeholder such as a tissue, napkin, iPhone..
I cannot think of any strange-out-of-this-world type of bookmark that I have used or seen.

Bookmark and Share


Filed under Book Thursday, bookmarks, Meme