Category Archives: Books

Excerpt & Giveaway: The Longbourn Letters by Rose Servitova

A Jane Austen fan fiction (JAFF) book with letters exchanged between two characters.

Diary of an Eccentric

Today marks the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s death, and to celebrate her life and her novels, my guest today is Rose Servitova, with an excerpt from The Longbourn Letters: The Correspondence Between Mr. Collins & Mr. Bennet.

Please give her a warm welcome:

I love minor characters and believe they add so much to novels. What I loved about writing this book, is the licence it gave me to allow Austen’s brilliant characters such as Lady Catherine and Anne de Bourgh, Mary Bennet and Mrs Philips as well as Mr Bennet and Mr Collins more ‘air-time’ to develop and become more tangible. It also enabled me to introduce new, comical minor characters such as the charismatic Reverend Smellie, the eccentric inventor Mr Lucas, the carriage-driving Baroness Herbert and Reverend Green (who walks an invisible dog).

This excerpt is taken from the second chapter of The Longbourn Letters –…

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Excerpt & Giveaway: The Longbourn Letters by Rose Servitova

A Jane Austen fan fiction (JAFF) book with letters exchanged between two characters.

Diary of an Eccentric

Today marks the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s death, and to celebrate her life and her novels, my guest today is Rose Servitova, with an excerpt from The Longbourn Letters: The Correspondence Between Mr. Collins & Mr. Bennet.

Please give her a warm welcome:

I love minor characters and believe they add so much to novels. What I loved about writing this book, is the licence it gave me to allow Austen’s brilliant characters such as Lady Catherine and Anne de Bourgh, Mary Bennet and Mrs Philips as well as Mr Bennet and Mr Collins more ‘air-time’ to develop and become more tangible. It also enabled me to introduce new, comical minor characters such as the charismatic Reverend Smellie, the eccentric inventor Mr Lucas, the carriage-driving Baroness Herbert and Reverend Green (who walks an invisible dog).

This excerpt is taken from the second chapter of The Longbourn Letters –…

View original post 1,686 more words

An Interview with Cassandra Grafton & Giveaway

Source: An Interview with Cassandra Grafton & Giveaway

Brock Turner is a Rapist and Deserves More Than Six Months in Jail. And More Importantly To The Rape Survivor, The Warrior, We Stand With You

A terrific response to the Stanford rape case by a good friend of mine. She really got it right.

jambiethoughts

Brock Turner raped an unconscious woman behind a dumpster. He was stopped by two witnesses on bicycles. Brock stopped what he was doing when they saw him, thus in my opinion and seriously it’s just common sense, signifying that he knew he was doing something wrong.  Then he  ran away. The witnesses chased after him and held him for the police. One witness  was crying and vomiting due to what he saw.

This must have been a truly horrific scene  for a person to have this reaction, to cry and vomit.  Now think about the way that Brock has described what happened that night.   He said he drank too much.

The Judge stated in writing  he was sentencing Brock to six months in jail, not prison,  because he took responsibility for his actions and showed remorse. Really? I think I missed it. I think we all did.

When did that happen? When did Brock show remorse? …

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Are the Republicans punking us? Or Republicans, the bad ones, grow the hell up.

A great commentary on just a few of the crazy stuff that’s in the news today. Must be a full moon, or Flint’s water is reaching us all.

jambiethoughts

I’m just going to start off by writing down the headlines of articles I’ve seen on Facebook today, and then maybe add some sarcastic comments. Then  I’ll try not to swear to much. That’s the plan.

Glenn Beck said that God had to kill Antonio Scalia to help put Ted Cruz in the White House.

An Idaho Senate panel  just approved a Bill to use the Bible to teach biology.

South Dakota approves transgender bathroom bill.

So seriously, what is happening in the world today? I realize it’s basically as messed up as it was yesterday and the day before, but I just have to say something. Are we , the American people being punked by the Republican party?  Because if all of the above headlines are not a joke, they should be.

I’m addressing the people who are in the news, specifically in the above headlines now……What the hell is…

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Japanese town’s Cat Street View lets you virtually tour its backstreets, meet feline residents

Something new for cat lovers.

SoraNews24

CV 0

It’s an amazing age we live in, where you can fire up Google Street View and virtually walk the boulevards of many of the world’s cities. But it turns out Google Street View has a bit of a rival in Japan. Granted, its scope is far smaller than Google’s, given that it only covers part of one town, but it shows up the Internet giant by letting you wander its walkways from the perspective of an alley cat, and even provides profiles of all the neighborhood kitties you’ll meet along the way!

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What Teacher’s Lounge? Some information for Governor Kasich

What Teacher’s Lounge? Some information for Governor Kasich.

Death in Kashmir by M. M. Kaye

A book from my youth – one of six romantic suspense stories set in exotic locales by MMKaye.

She Reads Novels

Death in Kashmir I have always thought of M. M. Kaye as an author of historical novels (such as the wonderful Far Pavilions) and although I was vaguely aware that she had also written a series of mystery novels, I had never really thought about reading them. Now that I’ve read the first one, Death in Kashmir, I will certainly be reading the others. What a great book this is!

Death in Kashmir was first published in 1953, but set a few years earlier in 1947, just as India is about to gain independence from Britain. Our heroine, Sarah Parrish, is attending what will probably be the final meeting of the Ski Club of India at Gulmarg, a resort in the mountains of Kashmir. Sarah is hoping for an enjoyable, relaxing holiday but the first sign of trouble ahead comes when another skier has a fatal accident on the slopes. Another…

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The Machine

Great review by SF author Daev hutichinson (Europe in Autumn)

The Automatic Cat

The Machine arrives one day at Beth’s flat on the Isle of Wight, the way many things are delivered to us these days. It comes in several pieces, brought by delivery men, and some bits are so big that they have to take the windows off to get them into the flat. It’s a hot day.

James Smythe’s extraordinary novel begins with a scene of domestic banality. The Machine could be a new bed, or a flatpack wardrobe. But it’s not. The Machine is illegal. It’s a device meant to erase traumatic memories and help rebuild people like Beth’s husband, Vic, a soldier who returned physically and emotionally wounded from a foreign war. Hailed as a miracle cure, the first generation of Machines was outlawed when it became clear that they were in fact doing more harm than good. Vic himself is in a clinic in London, in a vegetative…

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Review: Where the Carnies Are

Where the Carnies Are
Where the Carnies Are by Kayla Curry
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This review was done on behalf of The Author Visits: http:theauthorvisits.com

Note – the author provided a copy of the book for an unbiased review in return.

The Magical Land of the Carnival Kingdom. This is a short, sweet paranormal fantasy that is really a fairytale in disguise. Olive Sear is having a REALLY bad day – she caught her boyfriend in bed with another woman, she lost her job, her car stopped working on her way to going back to live with her parents, and it was raining….so when she suddenly finds herself in a bouncy house after taking off across the muddy fields to find a phone, she doesn’t flinch, being already numb from the days events. She continues on into the strange carnival-like place. The first person she mets, Alex, a sword thrower, becomes her guide into this new and fascinating place where she feels strangely at home. A closed, magical kingdom where carnies spend their off-season and retirement lives.

Pros: The characters are likable. A must for me. And plenty of side characters to liven up the place. At the end of the book we are promised “Sideshow,” a collection of 26 flash fiction stories about these side characters, which is what I wanted, although the link didn’t go anywhere at this time. Hopefully they are coming. They interested me, and I wanted more. This world she created was imaginative, and fascinating, and I wanted to step right into it. The author shows great promise, obviously loves a charming story, and a good, solid editor could fix some of the issues mentioned below, and help flesh out some of the people, and the in-between action scenes. I wanted more carny life. Her tone though is perfect for the story, and she obviously knows her knife-throwing stuff. She creates a world you hunger for more of. Who are these carnie folk, how did they come to be there, are they are born carnies, or are there any “new blood” ones? The castle, where a lot of the action occurs, is intriguing, mystifying and perfect for the book.

Cons: First person voice, which jumps in tense in some places. But it works for me, seeing everything through her eyes, even though it isn’t usually what I like. The characters are simplistic, slightly cardboard, and each has a place in the resolution of the story, and sometimes that is all they seem to be there for. There are some inconsistencies in the story, actions left out or skipped over where a page break or something would be appropriate, and places where it was confusing. She asks why her parents didn’t want her to know about carnie life, after just saying that she never knew them (her birth parents). She doesn’t seem to feel alarmed or freaked out as she casually absorbs the workings and people in the carnival kingdom. A normal response for a young woman, who just had a horrendous day, only to be confronted by a wondrous magical place, would either be to break down in tears, or dig in her heels and demand to see someone in charge. But instead, she allows herself to be cared for by the first person she meets, and towed round like a doll.

It doesn’t hurt of course that he is dressed like a pirate for his knife throwing act, and is handsome to boot. She hasn’t been there more than a few hours before she is agreeing to be his assistant until the gates open again in 2 months. Again, no break-down over that either. She is going to be there for two months, and she just accepts it. She takes the attitude that she must have carnie birth parents and so goes right for it. And although there is mention that an “advancer” – someone who can get out of the kingdom when the gates are closed – could get a message to her parents, she doesn’t do so in the month that goes by. Under the guise of “building trust,” she is blindfolded and led around the kingdom. Not sure most young women would go for that, with someone they just met the day before, under very strange circumstances. Her absolute trust in him, so soon, does’t read “real.” By the first few days they are in romance mode, and by the week’s end, in love. Too quick to be believable, but not if it’s a fairy tale. But when she finds out something special about him, instant change – she must be dreaming. Tends to go back and forth. Told she’s in a bubble, not on any planet, and the stars and sun aren’t real, are merely an illusion, and all she says is “Wow. That’s an interesting fact.”

But there is plenty of carny action, and in true fairy tale fashion, the bad are vanquished or rehabilitated, and everyone goes home happy and taken care of.

I think that’s why this became a fairy tale for me. While it can be classified as a paranormal fantasy, it’s slight nature, the somewhat two-dimensional characters, and the neat way everything got tidied up and resolved felt like one of the hundreds of fairy tales I read growing up. But in spite of this, I happen to love fairy tales, and when I had to stop reading in the middle and wait for the next day to finish, I was anxious to get back to the story, and kept thinking about it, always a great sign. The story was clean, love scenes were few and “fade-to-black,” so it’s suitable for the YA crowd. And I loved it’s cheerful, hopeful nature. So, judging it as a YA fairy tale,
My Rating: 4 /12 pixie dusted stars

View all my reviews