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Book Blast: "The Edge of Lost" by Kristina McMorris

The Edge of Lost by Kristina McMorris Publication Date: November 24, 2015 Kensington Books Trade Paperback, 340 pages Genre: Historical Fiction From New York Times bestselling author Kristina McMorris comes an ambitious and heartrending story of immigrants, deception, and second chances. On a cold night in October 1937, searchlights cut through the darkness around Alcatraz. A prison guard’s only daughter—one of the youngest civilians who lives on the island—has gone missing. Tending the warden’s greenhouse, convicted bank robber Tommy Capello waits anxiously. Only he knows the truth about the little girl’s whereabouts, and that both of their lives depend on the search’s outcome. Almost two decades earlier and thousands of miles away, a young boy named Shanley Keagan ekes out a living as an aspiring vaudevillian in Dublin pubs. Talented and shrewd, Shan dreams of shedding his dingy existence and finding his real father in America. The chance finally comes to cross the Atlantic, but wh

Mini Reviews (12)

I really need to catch up on NetGalley reviews so all of the mini-reviews this week are from NetGalley. Medici's Daughter by Sophie Perinot I really wanted to love this one but I just ended up feeling disappointed. It wasn't a bad story but I just didn't love the characters.  I actually liked Henry of Navarre the best out of everyone.  Margot was supposed to be really tough (and at times she was) but other times she was just kind of pathetic.  She let the Duc de Guise use her and just fell all over herself to make him happy when he was a self-centered jerk.  It was just kind of painful to watch.  It wasn't a bad book (I enjoyed the historical aspects of it) but it could have been so much better. 3 stars. The Guest Room by Chris Bohjalian   This was an interesting read.  I really liked how it was split into different characters' perspectives so you can get a little more background about each person in the story.  I found The Guest Room to b

Book Blast and Giveaway: "Decorum" by Kaaren Christopherson

Decorum: A Novel by Kaaren Christopherson Publication Date: March 31, 2015 Kensington Publishing Corp. Foramts: eBook, Paperback, Audio Pages: 425 Genre: Historical Fiction/Romance Kaaren Christopherson's brilliantly observed novel captures the glamour and grit of one of the world's most dazzling cities during one of its most tumultuous eras--as seen through the eyes of a singularly captivating heroine... In 1890s New York, beautiful, wealthy Francesca Lund is an intriguing prospect for worthy suitors and fortune hunters alike. Recently orphaned, she copes by working with the poor in the city's settlement movement. But a young woman of means can't shun society for long, and Francesca's long-standing acquaintance with dashing Edmund Tracey eventually leads to engagement. Yet her sheltered upbringing doesn't blind her to the indiscretions of the well-to-do... Among the fashionable circle that gathers around her there are mistresses, scandals,

Quick Review: "The Dream of the City" by Andres Vidal

From Goodreads:  Amid the changes of the modernist movement in twentieth-century Barcelona, a miraculous encounter brings two families together. The lovely Laura Jufresa, daughter of a wealthy goldsmith and one of the most prominent artisans in the city, dreams of going to Rome to learn how to make the most avant-garde jewelry of her time. Dimas Navarros, part of a humble and hardworking but poor family, searches for enchantment in Barcelona. The entwinement of these two lives and the metropolis in which they must thrive will forever change their fates. Centered around the construction of Antoni Gaudí’s phantasmagoric Sagrada Família and the pull it has on each character, The Dream of the City is both a historical imagining and a vibrant vision of the shapes and people that bring Barcelona to life. My Thoughts:  The Dream of the City is an interesting look at a turbulent period in Spain"s history.  through his characters, Mr Vidal shows the class divide in Barcelo

Review: "In The Shadow of the Storm" by Anna Belfrage

Synopsis:  England in 1321 is a confusing place. Edward II has been forced by his barons to exile his favourite, Hugh Despenser. The barons, led by the powerful Thomas of Lancaster, Roger Mortimer and Humphrey de Bohun, have reasons to believe they have finally tamed the king. But Edward is not about to take things lying down, and fate is a fickle mistress, favouring first one, then the other. Adam fears his lord has over-reached, but at present Adam has other matters to concern him, first and foremost his new wife, Katherine de Monmouth. His bride comes surrounded by rumours concerning her and the baron, and he hates it when his brother snickers and whispers of used goods. Kit de Courcy has the misfortune of being a perfect double of Katherine de Monmouth – which is why she finds herself coerced into wedding a man under a false name. What will Adam do when he finds out he has been duped? Domestic matters become irrelevant when the king sets out to punish his re

November Wrap Up

I'm so not ready for December to be here!  Work is extremely busy in December and that combined with all the holiday festivities, shopping, etc., makes for a really crazy month!  Because things are so busy, this is going to be a quick and dirty post. November was a great reading month for me; I read 11 books!  I am now at 95 books read for the year and my goal is 100 so I'm only 5 books away.  I don't know how much time I will have for reading this month so I'm glad that I only have to read 5.  Here are my November numbers: -11 books read    -2 non-fiction    -7 historical fiction    -3 review books    -3 library books    -0 books I own    -6 ebooks Here are the books I read: 1.) One Night in Winter by Simon Sebag Montefiore  2.) The Dream of the City by Andres Vidal - 3 stars (review will post on 12/4) 3.) Down the Rabbit Hole by Holly Madison - 3 Stars 4.) The Lake House by Kate Morton - 4 stars 5.) The Christmas Token by Shanna Hatfield - 4 st

Excerpt from 'The Dream of the City" by Andres Vidal

The Dream of the City by Andrés Vidal Publication Date: November 24, 2015 Open Road Integrated Media eBook; 557 Pages Genre: Historical Fiction Part love story, part chronicle of the modernist years of Barcelona and a society about to change irrevocably, The Dream of the City is an homage to the genius of the Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí (1852-1926)—an exciting historical novel in which we tour the most bohemian parts of Barcelona. In Barcelona, at the beginning of the 20th century, the destinies of two families, the Jufresas and the Navarros, converge: Francesc Jufresa is the head of the bourgeois family which runs the most renowned goldsmith workshop in the city. His daughter, the beautiful Laura, rejects the limited future of a housewife and mother to work with the brilliant Gaudí on the sculptures for the Sagrada Familia. Juan is the head of the Navarros, a poor family whose members must work hard to survive. Dimas, the first born, embodies his father’s hopes and resen

Book Spotlight: "Castles, Customs, and Kings"

Castles, Customs, and Kings: True Tales by English Historical Fiction Authors (Volume 2) Publication Date: September 30, 2015 Madison Street Publishing Hardcover, Paperback, eBook; 598 Pages Genre: History An anthology of essays from the second year of the English Historical Fiction Authors blog, this book transports the reader across the centuries from prehistoric to twentieth century Britain. Nearly fifty different authors share the stories, incidents, and insights discovered while doing research for their own historical novels. From medieval law and literature to Tudor queens and courtiers, from Stuart royals and rebels to Regency soldiers and social calls, experience the panorama of Britain’s yesteryear. Explore the history behind the fiction, and discover the true tales surrounding Britain's castles, customs, and kings. Visit the English Historical Fiction Authors blog & Facebook page . "Thoroughly enjoyable and diverse...leisure reading for any history fan."

Book Blast: "The Persian Woman" by Thomas Booker

Publication Date: September 2, 2015 Circle B Publishing LLC eBook; 229 Pages Genre: Literary/Mystery/Thriller A tough Navy SEAL and a beautiful Persian woman clash before working together to confront a ferocious common enemy. It is a tale of jihad, terror, and forbidden love. A Jeffrey Quinn novel. “I stayed up late reading this book a second time. I read it first for the intriguing story and the second time for the wonderful language. Mr. Booker has crafted a timely and compelling story filled with a cast of characters from the slimy to the sublime. I would like to have a friend like the main character, Jeffrey Quinn . . . a man with a past and his own demons . . . honest . . . loyal . . . .” -Rebecca K. McWhorter (5 Star Amazon Review) AMAZON US | AMAZON UK About the Author Soldier of fortune Thomas Booker has traveled widely in Europe, Africa, and Latin America. He currently is helping to build a children’s clinic in South East Asia. He resides in Texas.