Nov 182013
 
Review: The Other Boleyn Girl

I love the scandal and intrigue that is prevalent in stories from this time frame. There is always something going on: people conspiring, meeting, plotting in secret. It makes for a highly entertaining read. This book was full of this, and more. I love that the viewpoint is from Mary Boleyn, who is the lesser known sister of Anne Boleyn. I found their interactions to be quite believable, and quite sad. In fact, Mary’s entire life is quite sad, when viewed by an outsider. It makes me very glad to live in a time where I am in control of […]

Oct 072013
 
Review: The Touch of Sage

This was a sweet, clean romance. I found Sage to be a bit too naive for my taste, but that’s fairly typical with historical style stories. I kept wanting her to grow up a little and believe in herself. She raised her younger sisters and runs a boarding house by herself. You’d think she’d understand that she is strong, but that is not the case. Another issue I have with these stories, and Sage in particular is that her biggest desire is to get a husband and give him children. I am much too modern to see that as a […]

Sep 122013
 
Desert Fire

I was craving a sweet romance, and when I saw this on my ereader, I knew it was just the book to read. This is a clean romance that still has some heated passion. This story is loaded with humour. It makes for a quick light read. The humour is most prevalent in the banter between the characters, most notably between the McCall brothers. I love how they are all quite different, yet are still very close. The family dynamic is quite realistic, while being slightly more interesting and amusing than the average family. Overall, I enjoyed this story as […]

Sep 062013
 
Shaman

This was an intriguing story, but it was long. Not just in length (over 400 pages), but also in feel. The story spans several years, so some length is expected, I found it to take a while to read. As soon as I started reading the story, I was struck by how much it reminded me of The Clan of the Cave Bear. It too is sent in the past and features a main character who is mostly raised by an elder pair from the tribe. There are many differences between the two stories, but it’s the similarities that stuck […]

Aug 142013
 
Review: Daughter of the Sea

This story was a disappointment. The mythology was great, with a unique twist on Atlantis, but the execution did not match the potential of the story. Everything seemed to happen too fast and the ending didn’t really have a good conclusion. There were numerous gaps of time where it wasn’t even mention how much time had passed. But for everything to have happened, the time lapsed over the course of the book seemed much too long. Calista was a frustrating character. She was a mix of brave and whiny, headstrong and brat. She was forever changing her mind and causing […]

Aug 052013
 
Review: Out of the Easy

This was a beautiful, lyrical story filled with passion and hope. With a theme about overcoming obstacles and making your own destiny, this was a powerful message book with an entertaining story. While it seemed more about the characters than the plot, there was still plenty of action. The characters all seemed very well developed, and each was as individual as a real person. One of my favourite characters was Willie, the hard-faced madam who obviously loved Josie to pieces. The ending was quite lovely. Everything came together in a nice neat way, yet was still believable and true to […]

Jun 032013
 
Martin Reviews: All That Is

Women, booze and solipsism are recurring themes in James Salter’s historically sprawling and superbly written new novel, All That Is (Alfred A. Knopf.) His first novel, The Hunter (1957), was an account of Korean War jet fighter pilots, made the following year into a movie staring Robert Mitchum. It’s been over thirty years since Salter’s last novel, Solo Faces (1979), and one can only wonder if this is the closing work by the eighty-seven-year-old author, filmmaker and poet. The book opens in the summer of 1944 with naval navigation officer, Philip Bowman, waiting pensively on his ship before the U.S. […]

May 272013
 
Review: The Red Queen

It’s been a while since I read historical fiction, so I picked this audiobook book up on a whim, not realizing it was the second in the series. I was pleasantly surprised. The story stands alone, and is quite intriguing. Margaret is a cold, bitter, jealous woman. She is quite delusional, believing that God speaks to her and that her every desire is the will of God. She is selfish and doesn’t see it at all. She’s not an easy woman to like, but her belief in herself does lead to quite a bit of drama. While I enjoyed the […]

Apr 172013
 
Review: Ru

This story was told in a unique format: short vignettes that were often only a page or two in length. They felt only subtly connected, and didn’t always flow smoothly. This left the book with a disjointed feel, but the writing itself used beautiful language. Without prior knowledge of Vietnam history, the story was a bit hard to follow as there was little background given. The story centred on people and the experiences that the main character had. Overall, while I found the story moving and very personal, I couldn’t get into the format. It felt too disjointed without a […]

Jan 282013
 
Review: Grave Mercy

This book is well worth the considerable hype it has gotten. Assassin nuns are definitely worth read. I found that although this is classified as YA, it’s definitely on the older end of that scale, almost an adult read. I would describe it as a historical romance with healthy helping of spy action. I was disappointed that the spy training was skipped, and that the actual assassin action took a back seat to the romance story, but at least the romance was sweet and well written. Gavriel is a gentleman and a good match for Ismae. He is both aggravating […]