All Things Austen, Part 2
Uncategorized / April 7, 2018

And so we continue our heart-pounding rush through the world of Austen with…. Mansfield Park OK, the only Austen that everyone hates. (Well, almost everyone.) Fanny Price, at 10 years old, is sent to live with her rich relatives to acquire some education and, eventually, a suitable marriage (provided it isn’t higher than her rank – we can’t all be the most important people). I actually liked Fanny very much, aside from her name, which I would only wish on my enemies. Although she is the polar opposite of Emma Woodhouse (perhaps we shouldn’t have read them in such close conjunction) she possesses her own kind of virtue. Her humility, obedience and lack of grudge-holding towards her proud, selfish and sometimes cruel relatives shows the reader a part of her virtue, while the rest is shown in her struggles to stand her ground in the important matters. The main reason that this book my least favorite (just like everyone else on the planet) is because of Fanny’s cousin Edmund Bertram. He was the most annoying and undeserving guy ever. I have no idea why she loved him and I think he got far, far better than he deserved. Perhaps this…

Bite Sized Reviews
Uncategorized / October 17, 2017

Not all the books I read go into reviews, for varying reasons. Because I didn’t finish them; because it would be too much work and I’m feeling lazy; because they’re just not worth it. More often than not, though, those reasons have to do with the Content Review portion, and not with my thoughts (unless it was just so bland I didn’t have any thoughts). So, I thought I’d try out a new feature: bite sized reviews. Titles that didn’t make it into normal full-info reviews, and my thoughts on them.  These Children Who Come At You With Knives, by Jim Knipfel. The best comparison that comes to mind is Douglas Adams gone wrong. If you’ve read the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – or any of his books, really – you’re familiar with the random chaotic humor and odd juxtapositions. I think these ‘fairytales’ were aiming for something of the sort, but it’s a much cruder humor, and not nearly as effective. In the end, though, the Hitchhiker’s Guide has bleak, cynical undertones, despite the humor. It says quietly there’s nobody Out There after all, and it doesn’t really matter what you do, because everything is chance and nothing…

Tongues of Serpents
Uncategorized , Young Adult / August 8, 2017

Temeraire #6. Author: Naomi Novik. Summary: Convicted of treason despite their heroic defense against Napoleon’s invasion of England, Temeraire and Laurence—stripped of rank and standing—have been transported to the prison colony at New South Wales in distant Australia, where, it is hoped, they cannot further corrupt the British Aerial Corps with their dangerous notions of liberty for dragons. Temeraire and Laurence carry with them three dragon eggs intended to help establish a covert in the colony and destined to be handed over to such second-rate, undesirable officers as have been willing to accept so remote an assignment—including one former acquaintance, Captain Rankin, whose cruelty once cost a dragon its life. Nor is this the greatest difficulty that confronts the exiled dragon and rider: Instead of leaving behind all the political entanglements and corruptions of the war, Laurence and Temeraire have instead sailed into a hornet’s nest of fresh complications. For the colony at New South Wales has been thrown into turmoil after the overthrow of the military governor, one William Bligh—better known as Captain Bligh, late of HMS Bounty. Bligh wastes no time in attempting to enlist Temeraire and Laurence to restore him to office, while the upstart masters of…

The Thirteen Days of Christmas
Uncategorized / January 4, 2017

Author: Jenny Overton. Summary: Annaple Kitson dreams of romance and being swept off her feet, so her family hatch an elaborate plan to help her sweetheart, Francis Vere, win her hand in marriage. When Francis arrives on Christmas morning with a partridge in a pear tree, Annaple is delighted! But that is only the first day of Christmas… My Thoughts: An absolutely delightful romance short! The rich-man-sweeps-village-girl-off-her-feet plot has been done before, but Jenny Overton puts a new twist on it. Annaple isn’t impressed by Francis’ wealth and ships, but she is a die-hard romantic, and through the conspiracy of her siblings Francis begins a new courting tactic on Christmas day. Thence ensures chaos and confusion, as Francis completely revamps their home, filling it with romantic animals, hiring carpenters to add a romantic pool and stream, and going so far as to hire performers to arrive outside her door each morning. Annaple goes through delight, irritation, horror, and all the way back at her lover’s devotion. A perfectly clean read for the kids, and highly amusing. Content Review: Sexual content: None. Language: None. Violence: None.