I first came across Robin Jarvis when I read The Dark Portal (The Deptford Mice Trilogy). I loved the first two books, then I went to buy the third….and I realised they were not young adult books. I of course, was not a child, I was a teenager (almost anyway), but I recoiled in horror that I should have bought a children’s book, and I may be seen by my peers doing that. God almost-teenage years…awful… Continue reading
As a kid I used to always ignore the Author’s Note in books. I never saw the point in them – I just wanted to get to the story….I read them now, and the one in this is apologetic to “students and speakers of Russian”, due to her translation into English of Russian words.
Quite honestly, I think anyone who reads this book will forgive her….
This is a beautiful book. Absolutely beautiful. I quite honestly never wanted it to end, and I’ve delayed reviewing it because I didn’t want to admit it was over. The main character does not appear from the start – having yet to be born, but already we have fallen in love with Dunya and her storytelling, with Pyotr for being the loving husband and father,and with all the others (including the domovoi). Then we meet our main character….Vasya….
I’m not spoiling the story – I’m giving nothing away – you need – you must! read this book!! All I will tell you is that it is a Russian fairytale, a real fairytale, and it will break you heart into pieces, but you will never want it to end….I mourn for this book.
This book was provided to me by the lovely people at Netgalley, and the picture I whipped from Amazon…
One of the quotes on the back of this book is by Gregory MacGuire “like a lost tale of Grimm newly come to light….bewitching”. It’s true, it is a new fairytale. Something you’ve been looking for for a long time, and then one of those books that just hits all the comforting, warming spots that you really sometimes just need in your life.
In a nutshell, the story is set in a valley with an enchanted forest (see what I mean about the fairytale?!). Every 10 years the Wizard comes down from his tower and chooses a young woman to take back to the castle and serve him. Everyone expects the pretty, graceful woman to be taken, but of course, it’s not, it’s her friend. I don’t apologise for the spoiler here as it’s so obvious who will be taken even from the synopsis on the back cover…
I took this book on holiday with me and it was an absolutely perfect read. Some of the plot you can see coming from a mile off, but that’s not always a bad thing. It’s really nicely written, and is a great new fairytale. Often I send books straight to charity after I’ve read them, but this one is staying on my bookshelf, whenever I’m feeling a bit low it’s where i’m going to head to pick me up again. I also love the cover, it sets out exactly what you imagine…
Picture from Amazon.co.uk
Wow. This is the first book that I have read of this author, although I have been meaning to buy one for quite some time, as I loved the film Stardust, and I knew he would be right up my street so to speak.
It didn’t disappoint. This is one of those books that you read as a child and it stays with you for the rest of your life. For example, for me, it’s Joan Aiken (The Stolen Lake being my favourite), and Alan Garner (The Weirdstone of Brisingamen – oh Alderley Edge!). I’ve never encountered a book like this in my adult life life – it transported me back to my childhood and it was just absolutely magical.
I’m never going to forget this book, and I can see myself rereading it over and over again. It’s pretty short so you can do it in a weekend easily. Perfect.
I’m planning on buying the rest of his books, I hope they are all as special as this one – I’m confident they will be…
For those of you who have never read Gormenghast, you really should. It’s an absolutely amazing book, even if you don’t enjoy the plot (don’t worry, you will), it is written with what can only be described as artistry. It’s beautiful, descriptive, it’s a book which really does take you into it’s loving arms – you escape to a world that I never personally wanted to come out of.
I adore Gormenghast….
I didn’t even know about this book, I just chanced upon it when I was in a bookshop one day looking for something else (The latest Dwarves book by Markus Heitz if you’re wondering – my boyfriends birthday). Naturally, I snapped it up, finished food shopping, and legged it home full of excitement – well legged it home as quick as you can do with a full bag of vegetables in one hand and a bag of fish and meat in the other – which isn’t very fast truth told. Anyway, I digress.
You know where i’m going with this don’t you?…
Although it was not written by Mervyn, it was pulled together by Maeve Gilmore based on fragments that he had written before he passed away. It takes us on the next journey of Titus after he leaves Gormenghast behind, and his trying to find his way in the world. I’m not giving the story away – I don’t do that (sorry) – I found that I couldn’t put this book down, I really felt for Titus and once again I was drawn into the story and it wouldn’t let me go. It’s pretty short so I read it in a couple of days. It’s a really sad book, typically ‘Titus’, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. There is no happy ending – that would be wrong, it just ‘is’, and that is perfect for the end of the story of Gormenghast. I’m itching to reread the first three again to be honest….
I have to admit, this is the sort of book that I absolutely love, full of fairytales, magic and mystery, with a good ‘got to work out how to take down the baddie’ plot.
The main character is Story Sparks, a young woman who has no idea how special she is. Story is plagued by firstly the lack of dreams, and then horrific nightmares – ones which she remembers having many years ago when she was a child.
We are swept away into Story’s tale, along with her and her two friends when they take a trip to Lake Sandeen on a sunny day for a picnic.
What follows is a magical world of fairytales, and the discovery of who Story really is…there are wolves, red riding hood, fairies, and of course the baddie.
I really enjoyed this book, it’s easy reading and you do get sucked into it. I await the next one….
Firstly – on investigation, this book is from a story ad lyrics by Neil Peart – there is an accompanying album, or it’s an accompanying book – not sure. I’ve not heard the music although there are lyrics at the back of this book. I’m just reviewing this book based on the story.
So, the story….the main character Owen Hardy, lives in a little village and is fully ready, happy and prepared to take over his fathers apple orchard when he comes of age.
He does however have a tendendy to ‘think big’, and dreams of one day seeing Crown City, the Watchmaker’s capital. the Watchmaker is loved by the people of Owen’s country, think of him as a kind of Wizard of Oz character – ensuring that everything runs like clockwork, the weather, heating, transport, etc, etc. The Watchmaker runs everything to order, everyone is happy, and nobody questions their purpose in life, they’re all safe and protected.
One night, after Owen’s betrothed Lavinia fails to show up for an unplanned sporadic romantic meeting, Owen goes wandering down to the railtracks to watch a scheduled steamliner pass by before he heads back home. The events that follow from this sporadic decision change Owen’s life forever, and he becomes embroiled in a tug of war between the Watchmaker and his nemesis, the Anarchist who disagrees with all that the Watchmaker stands for.
I enjoyed this book, it’s easy reading, and nicely written. Owen is a well rounded character who you can’t help but empathise with. Personally, I am very much a Watchmaker type person – I like order and control. If I was in charge then I would run the country the way that he does, so for me, there were quite a few moral lessons to be learnt from it. It is a classic story of chaos verses order, and the balance that needs to be maintained.
I’m quite interested in the album now, from reading this book. I’ve never come across something like this before…
Thanks to ECW for providing a review copy via NetGalley.
I came across Tad years ago when I discovered the Otherland books, I absolutely loved them, then I moved onto Memory, Sorrow and Thorn, and then the rest…I’m a huge fan I admit, so I was over the moon when I stumbled over this on Netgalley
A good sized collection of short stories of various genres, all written in Tad’s great style. I was absolutely over the moon when I came across an Otherland story (i’m now gazing back at the bookshelf, tempted to reread – Otherland really is a truly great series).
There’s not a bad story amongst them, which can sometimes be a problem with short stories, each one is well written, and the characters rounded. There’s nothing one dimensional about them. One of the short stories is quite long, and frightened me quite a bit – I never realised Tad could do ‘frightening’ – he does it very well!
All in all, a great collection of stories, well worth a read for those unfortunate mortals who haven’t come across Tad before.
Thanks to Tachyon for providing a review copy via NetGalley
What can I say….
I came across this author on Twitter, and after he tweeted that part of one of his books was available for download free (Gravity’s Revenge), I decided to take up the offer.
I loved the little snippet of Gravity’s revenge that I read, and I was absolutely gutted when I’d finished it. I therefore (unsurprisingly) picked up Brood of Bones.
The author is right (surprise eh?), Brood of Bones is a lot darker than Gravity’s Revenge. I met Enchantress Hiresha, and her curse, the story was set and I was taken on a non-stop ride of hope, fear, panic..the list goes on.
This is a fabulous story, very well written, and I’m surprised Mr Marling is still an indie author……maybe that’s his choice (I after all have no experience in this field!). There’s nothing slow about this book, no unnecessary waffling. It’s a great read, his style of writing is easy and light, you certainly don’t wade through the book, it’s a page turner, and I will without a doubt be picking up the rest of Gravity’s Revenge, and his other titles.
Go out and buy!!
I’m bias. I love Terry Pratchett, Discworld, and the offshoots.
I have nothing really to say other than Snuff is a cracker of a novel. The Discworld Series are all good, but some are better than others, and this is one of the greater ones, and I’m not really a ‘Watch’ person, i’m more of a Witches Pratchett fan – we tend to fall into two categories it would seem….Watch and Witches.
So basicallly, if you haven’t read Discworld, then you need to. Go out and buy the first one now. Then carry on!