My Latest Reads

Trema's bookshelf: read

Gathering Blue
Sickened: The Memoir of a Munchausen by Proxy Childhood
The Giver
Child of Grace
The Silent Girl: A Novel
The One Who Waits for Me
Flesh and Blood So Cheap: The Triangle Fire and Its Legacy
The Blind in Darkness
Haunted Kids: True Ghost Stories (Haunted Kids)
Like the Willow Tree: The Diary of Lydia Amelia Pierce, Portland, Maine, 1918

Trema's favorite books »

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Review: Death Comes to Pemberley

Death Comes to Pemberley
by P.D. James

Quote: " I may have said much too little and you, my love, a little too much, but together, as usual, I think we got it right. and now we must brace ourselves for the majesty of the law in the person of Sir Selwyn Hardcastle." - Darcy pg. 129

Started: Jan. 5, 2013
Finished: Jan. 12, 2013
hardcover/ 291 pages

From the cover:
It is 1803, six years since Elizabeth and Darcy embarked on their life together at Pemberley, Darcy's magnificent estate. Their peaceful, orderly world seems almost unassailable. Elizabeth has found her footing as the chatelaine of the great house. They have two fine sons, Fitzwilliam and Charles. Elizabeth's sister Jane and her husband, Bingley, live nearby; her father visits often; there is optimistic talk about the prospects of marriage for Darcy's sister, Georgiana. And preparations are under way for their much-anticipated annual autumn ball.
 Then, on the eve of the ball, the patrician idyll is shattered. A coach careens up the drive carrying Lydia, Elizabeth's disgraced sister, who with her husband, the very dubious Wickham, has been banned from Pemberley. She stumbles out of the carriage, hysterical, shrieking that Wickham has been murdered. With shocking suddenness, Pemberley is plunged into a frightening mystery.

My Review:
 Ummm, well. I have no idea where to begin. I truly wanted to love this book. I didn't. honestly, I didn't even like this book. Yes, I admit I trudged myself on to finish it fully. I just kept thinking it had to get better soon. I was fooling myself. I knew before half way through it was doomed with no hope of recovering!
Sadly, this P.D. James, which I admit I had never even heard of before this book, has lost my interest completely with just one book. I try not to judge authors too harshly based on one book, but SERIOUSLY, this is Jane Austen you were dealing with. To even attempt this feat and feel enough confidence in yourself as an author amazes me!
Where was Elizabeth in this book???? This "woman-in-her-place", "shadow of a person" was by NO means the Elizabeth that Miss Austen created. 
I never felt connected to any of these characters. They never became real to me or alive. 
There was no believable scenes or chapters. Everything just dragged on and on without ever really becoming a story.
I don't see anymore P.D. James books in my future.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Review: Spare Change

Spare Change
by Bette Lee Crosby

Quote:" I believe he's a man who can be trusted, but you'll have to be the one to decide whether or not you want to tell him the truth of what happened."-Olivia pg. 212

Started: Jan. 3, 2013
Finished: Jan.5, 2013
280 pages/ paperback

From the cover:
Olivia Westerly's father disowned her when she tossed her nose in the air and left home in pursuit of a job he considered scandalous. He expected that she'd marry and settle into having babies as her friends had done; but Olivia simply couldn't tolerate the thought. Why just the mere mention of children sent chills up her spine!
 Believing that children weigh a woman down like a pocket full of stones, Olivia avoids such entanglements for almost forty years... but then she meets Charlie Doyle and everything changes. Even though Charlie has a son, and a grandson he's supposedly never seen, Olivia is blinded by love and happily says " I do,"
 That happiness is cut short when Charlie dies on their honeymoon and Olivia returns home to find eleven year old Ethan Allen Doyle sitting on her doorstep. The boy's parents are dead and only two people know the truth of what happened- Ethan Allen isn't talking and the murderer wants to make certain he never does. Olivia is the only one who can stop it from happening.

My Review:
I am so excited to finally get to this review! This is my first review on a book that was sent to me personally from the author! Signed and everything!!! Woo hoo! I am more than delighted to do this review for what I am discovering is a wonderful author, Mrs. Bette Lee Crosby.
Be sure and visit her website or you can even be her fan/friend on Goodreads by clicking here.
Don't forget to add her books to your reading list!
Spare Change was such a sweet, heartwarming and sometimes sassy book. While some reviewers have claimed this book to have a slow start, I rather enjoyed the character building aspect of the first few chapters. I really enjoyed the well way it was written in short chapters by individual characters views.
The character's personalities immediately show through and draw you into the story.
Olivia is a woman who has always known what she wanted and what she didn't want in life.
Charlie is the all American man of her dreams, Olivia has been waiting for.
Susanna is a feisty, dreamer that struggles with what she can do and what she wants to do
Benjamin is the hard-working, never has it good enough, rough-necked drunkard
Ethan Allen(my favorite) is the neglected, spunky little guy with too much life experience for his age
Scooter Cobb is the slimey, over sized, above the law wannabe!
Detective Jack Mahoney, good-guy, christian cop who wants to save the day and right all wrongs
There are several other, smaller characters, but all have very distinguished personalities.
This book showed me how you never know how or when you will find faith, trust and hope. The Lord does indeed work in mysterious ways. Crosby shows that no matter what we think we want in life, He always has something better for us. at least in Olivia's case.
I don't want to include any spoilers which makes this part of the review so difficult. I really enjoyed this story and hope that there will be a sequel. I will say I wish Crosby had written more about why Charlie hadn't spoken to his son and where did Susanna really come from. I think those were the only two things that never really got answered for me.
I have already recommended this book to several friends and have 3 people in line to borrow my copy!
Definitely 5 stars*****

Review: The Sealed Letter

The Sealed Letter
by Emma Donoghue

Quote: " Liberty! Let every woman do that which is right in her own eyes!" -Fido pg. 168

Started: Dec. 21, 2012
Finished: Jan. 2, 2013
397 pages/hardcover

From the cover:
Based on a scandalous divorce case
that gripped England in 1864, The Sealed Letter blends fact and invention to create a riveting, provocative drama of friends, lovers, and divorce-Victorian style.
Miss Emily "Fido" Faithfull is a "woman of business" and a spinster pioneer in the British women's movement, independent of mind but naively trusting of heart. Distracted from her cause by the sudden return of her once-dear friend, the unhappily wed Helen Codrington, Fido is swept up in the intimate details of Helen's failing marriage to a stuffy admiral and her obsessive affair with a young army officer. What begins as a loyal effort to help a friend explodes into a courtroom drama that rivals the Clinton affair- complete with stained clothing, accusations of adultery, counterclaims of rape, and a mysterious sealed letter that could destroy more than one life.
  The Sealed Letter is a page-turner of the most intelligent sort. Brought to life by Emma Donoghue's vivid characterizations and matchless eye for detail, here is a story remarkably relevant to contemporary issues of infidelity, propriety, and the media.

My Review:
I have no idea how to give this review. First, this was NOT a " page-turner of the most intelligent sort", nor did it have "vivid characters". I want to say that given the time when this "scandal" took place then yes, I agree the book is "fitting". Seeing that it was actually written in 2008!!!! I cannot believe that Miss Donoghue meant for this story to come out the way it did.  It's almost as if she was afraid to include ANY details or "meat" to the story. I just felt like the whole book was one big secret that vaguely got revealed in the last 5 or so pages. Again with no real detail or insight. Maybe she got too wrapped up in the what was appropriate in 1864, and forgot to write in details of the story that are appropriate in the 21st century! 
Then of course there are the " character", which I use the term loosely. I couldn't relate to or believe any of them. the most interesting had to be the nosy, over dramatic,and conniving, Mrs. Watson. At least she showed some "character". she seems to be the only character Donoghue decided to reveal or show her true colors about. 
I haven't been pleased with Google or Wiki on this whole subject either. There is almost no, if little information on the Codrington divorce. I like to do my own research on any non-fiction books I read and was very disappointed to find almost nothing. There are several other book reviews on The Sealed Letter and several opinion posts but no real facts! There are tons of bio pages on Emily Faithfull but not one picture of Helen Codrington. the only info I can find on Henry Codrington mainly focuses on his military career. And whatever happened to their two daughters???
* 2 stars*


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...