Archive | March 2016

Hounded… a Book Review

From a light Australian romance to a humourous and super interesting first in a chronicles book about an extremely (try 2,100 years) long lived Druid in modern day USA. This book is full of wonderful characters, action, humour, paranormal, magic, did I mention humour, because I really LOVED that part of this book.

Hounded by Kevin Hearne is the first in The Iron Druid Chronicles and most certainly will NOT be the last one I read in this series. From the main character (and our narrator and view point the whole story through) the Druid Atticus O’Sullivan (at least that is the name he goes by now) to his dog Oberon (who is beyond a hoot and a half) to his werewolf and vampire legal team… oh I could just go on and on… a human widow (Irish and long lived) who made me laugh from the first meeting on… gods that you are not sure if you should love or hate… OH and everyone hates Thor… I mean EVERYONE! (not the same as movie Thor, apparently the different versions/incarnations of the gods etc exist in different places… belief/power/etc determines that)

All for the want of a sword… that is that everyone has a different opinion as to whether or not Atticus should keep hold of the one he has. With old adversaries blending with new and those on his side at times even questionable, Atticus is constantly sharing a bit of his past here, a thought there, a joke always and his love for his pet Oberon… eternal.

I don’t know that I can sing the praises of this story loudly enough. There is lively discussion about various deities… a lovely bit of a history lesson, characters that seem so real you feel like you just need to get to the place and meet them for yourself. Granted, there is some sexuality (goddesses are traditionally quite naked it seems and so many of the pantheons are full of sex and gore), definitely a bit of gore (for really a Celtic Druid with an insanely important sword… duh), but so much humour and such a well told story! I cannot wait to get my hands on the second one! hounded-9781441870001-lg

Patchwork Family in the Outback…a Book Review

Well, I know I haven’t mentioned this one the blog yet (being so far behind as I am!) but this is our time to learn all about Australia and all things Australian. It has been almost a full month now of amazing facts and interesting dialogue between ourselves and the friends online who live in Australia currently. While searching for books at the library (and I may add someone else is doing the same topic and chasing me for resources! ACK!) I came across some fiction books under the same keywords. So what is a girl to do but request one and give it a go! So… here goes!

First off, Patchwork Family in the Outback by Soraya Lane is one of a series called Bellaroo Creek (which is also the location they are set at in… you guessed it… the Outback). They are also NOT the inspirationals I usually read, rather a Harlequin Romance, though still soft and without great detail in regards to intimacy… a sort of, kiss kiss fade to black but we darn well know what those two got up to… sort of story.

Basically Bellaroo Creek is in need of a teacher, otherwise its school will close and families will have to move (or as we have learned, take radio school… though this option is not discussed in the book). This is a huge fear for single father Harrison Black who regards life as one bitten always shy… no twice about it… when his wife jumps ship to move to a more urban center. Enter Poppy Carter, wooed by the one dollar a month rent and the chance to make a difference after her own disastrous romantic history.

I enjoyed this book on a rather light hearted, easy read sort of basis. There is no religious component and the speed of the story is relatively quick. I don’t know how true to life it would be, this Bellaroo Creek in the Outback and would love it if someone could fill me in either way.

What I found interesting is the isolation and how the characters reacted to it. I wonder how I would feel out where you really have to depend on those things at hand and people near by with the understanding that outside that bubble is quite the drive to get to more.

The characters are endearing, the issues spring up from the past and the current weather/land/seasonal change. So there is no true bad guy dipping a finger in the pot. I liked that. The intimacy description was well within my comfort range though at times I wanted to swat the man upside the head. So, if you are interested in a light read based in Australia… give it a go… and please let me know if you do!17570295

Talking Pictures… a Book Review

Well, after Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children book and graphic novel AND Hollow City I figured I would go ahead and put in a request at the library for Ransom Riggs’ photo book – Talking Picture – Images and Messages Rescued From the Past. Definitely worth a look and a borrow from the library.

This over 300 page book is full of varied photographs and commentary from Ransom Riggs. All the photos are black and white or sepia prints though some of the notations made on them are in colour ink. All original to the pictures. The most touching and heart rending portion of this book is under the title Janet Lee. This series of pictures and the notations on the back tell a story worth seeing. (I won’t explain more, you will have to look for yourself)

While I doubt I will purchase a copy of this book for myself, I could definitely see re requesting it from our public library. Ransom Riggs has a real talent for choosing photos that not only tell a story but draw you in, make you wonder and make and impression on  you.

I suddenly have an urge to dig out the photos I rescued from the family albums when my parents dispersed them between us all and put them away properly. In fact, this is my summer goal (since I need to purchase books for them and hope like mad they are still stored in some sort of order!). One more bucket to unearth, sort and prepare and fingers crossed they are still in relative order!

What this book does is make you think about those photos you see at the rummage sales, the old images someone simply scans and puts up on the internet. So many stories, so many events we now have to imagine and guess at. But there is some worth in not knowing, in creating our own narrative. In loving them for whole new reasons unique to ourselves and our view of them as past images. Be sure to check this book out if you enjoy a glimpse of the past from a rather unique viewpoint!16528755968_dd264b98f3