Top Ten Tuesday: The Colours of Mardi Gras

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Purple, Yellow, and Green Book Covers (Mardi Gras!)


Top Ten Tuesday this week is an opportunity to gaze at some lovely colours themed around the colours purple, yellow, and green. I always enjoy a cover edition so as usual I may have gone a little (or a lot) beyond ten books. I’ve linked each of the covers to their reviews in case anything catches your attention. On to the books…

 

      


What did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Top Ten Tuesday: The New-to-Me Authors of 2020

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  New-to-Me Authors I Read in 2020


This week Top Ten Tuesday is all about the new-to-me authors of 2020. Alongside the latest read from a favourite author I do enjoy discovering new writers. This is a selection of my discoveries from 2020, along with a snippet of my review for each book. As always, titles are linked to full reviews in case anything catches your eye…

Stoker’s Wilde by Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi – “…blends horror, humour and wit, with two wonderfully engaging protagonists and reluctant allies and a wide supporting cast of heroes and villains which make this a great read.”

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – “The story is a really involved slow burn for the first two thirds, the tension gradually ratcheting up until the awful truth is revealed and from there the descent into horror is rapid and vivid. It’s almost as stomach churning as the moment a rollercoaster reaches the peak and drops suddenly. You know something is about to happen because there are so many things wrong at High Place, so many dark secrets, and it’s tense reading discovering whether Noemí will be able to save her cousin, and even by the end, herself.”

The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James – “The story combines an old murder mystery with some wonderfully creepy scenes at the motel. The dead of night, the isolation, the threat from something apparently real but not real, I definitely had a moment or two when I was glad I’m come across certain scenes during daylight hours, or I may have had to put the story aside for a while.”

Wayward Pines trilogy by Blake Crouch – “One sign of a good book is that you can’t wait to get back to reading, and that definitely happened for me with Pines. I always wanted to read just one more chapter, and found myself trying to find more reading time in my day because with each surprise and revelation things just became more strange and inexplicable.”

Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry – “Through hailstorms, dust clouds, a plague of grasshoppers, encounters with grizzly bears, searing heat and endless wilderness, desolate places and many extremes, I journeyed with these characters and shared their joys and despairs.”

The Invisible Library (The Invisible Library #1) by Genevieve Cogman – “The Invisible Library is a good beginning to a series that I’m looking forward to discovering. Anything themed around books and libraries and alternate fantasy worlds is going to get my reading attention, and as Irene was dispatched with new orders at the end of this novel, I was almost as pleased as she was that there is more to look forward to in this world of magic and adventure and books.”

A Cosmology of Monsters by Shaun Hamill – “A Cosmology of Monsters is an intriguing blend of family life mingled with horrors both everyday and otherworldly, and I would give it a try if you’re looking for something a little different, a little strange, a little scary and a little mysterious.”

Opium and Absinthe by Lydia Kang – “The storyline kept me guessing until the end as to who or what was responsible for Lucy’s murder. I also liked the inclusion of quotes from Dracula at the beginning of each chapter, it’s made me want to read that book again as well. Tillie is a likable character who grew in confidence as the tale progressed and her discovering the truth made for an eventful tale.”

The Other People by C. J. Tudor – “The opening hints at something strange straight away, an unknown girl, alone, sleeping, surrounded by medical equipment. There’s something eerie about it. Who is she and what has happened to her? I enjoyed the way this narrative ran throughout, suggesting something slightly out of the ordinary alongside the thriller unfolding.”

The Sleep Tight Motel by Lisa Unger – “Mysterious, eerie, great atmosphere, and a need to know exactly what is going on in the room next door, from which Eve hears screams and dragging sounds on more than one occasion despite there being no other guests staying at the motel kept me glued to this for the duration.”


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Meant to Read In 2020 but Didn’t Get To

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Books I Meant to Read In 2020 but Didn’t Get To


Ah, all the books I meant to read, hoped to read, but somehow passed me by. This list could be endless, there are so many books and my TBR never seems to get any shorter. I will however do my best to stick to just ten books which I’ll select based on my really wanting to get around to at least some of them very soon. In fact, I’ll begin with the book I’ve chosen as my first read of this year…

The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow

In a sprawling mansion filled with peculiar treasures, January Scaller is a curiosity herself. As the ward of the wealthy Mr. Locke, she feels little different from the artefacts that decorate the halls: carefully maintained, largely ignored, and utterly out of place.

Then she finds a strange book. A book that carries the scent of other worlds, and tells a tale of secret doors, of love, adventure and danger. Each page turn reveals impossible truths about the world and January discovers a story increasingly entwined with her own.

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

A murder on the high seas. A detective duo. A demon who may or may not exist.
It’s 1634 and Samuel Pipps, the world’s greatest detective, is being transported to Amsterdam to be executed for a crime he may, or may not, have committed. Travelling with him is his loyal bodyguard, Arent Hayes, who is determined to prove his friend innocent.
But no sooner are they out to sea than devilry begins to blight the voyage. A twice-dead leper stalks the decks. Strange symbols appear on the sails. Livestock is slaughtered.
And then three passengers are marked for death, including Samuel.
Could a demon be responsible for their misfortunes?
With Pipps imprisoned, only Arent can solve a mystery that connects every passenger onboard. A mystery that stretches back into their past and now threatens to sink the ship, killing everybody on board.

The Secret History by Donna Tartt

Under the influence of their charismatic classics professor, a group of clever, eccentric misfits at an elite New England college discover a way of thinking and living that is a world away from the humdrum existence of their contemporaries. But when they go beyond the boundaries of normal morality they slip gradually from obsession to corruption and betrayal, and at last – inexorably – into evil.

Stoker’s Wilde West by Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi

Thinking they have put their monster-hunting days behind them, Oscar Wilde and Bram Stoker return to their normal lives. But when their old ally Robert Roosevelt and his nephew Teddy find a new nest of vampires, they are once again pulled into the world of the supernatural, this time in the American West. A train robbery by a band of vampire gunslingers sets off a series of events that puts Bram on the run, Oscar leading a rescue party and our heroes being pursued by an unstoppable vampire bounty hunter who rides a dead, reanimated horse.

Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The Jazz Age is in full swing, but Casiopea Tun is too busy cleaning the floors of her wealthy grandfather’s house to listen to any fast tunes. Nevertheless, she dreams of a life far from her dusty small town in southern Mexico. A life she can call her own.

Yet this new life seems as distant as the stars, until the day she finds a curious wooden box in her grandfather’s room. She opens it—and accidentally frees the spirit of the Mayan god of death, who requests her help in recovering his throne from his treacherous brother. Failure will mean Casiopea’s demise, but success could make her dreams come true.

In the company of the strangely alluring god and armed with her wits, Casiopea begins an adventure that will take her on a cross-country odyssey from the jungles of Yucatán to the bright lights of Mexico City—and deep into the darkness of the Mayan underworld.

City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty

Nahri has never believed in magic. Certainly, she has power; on the streets of 18th century Cairo, she’s a con woman of unsurpassed talent. But she knows better than anyone that the trade she uses to get by—palm readings, zars, healings—are all tricks, sleights of hand, learned skills; a means to the delightful end of swindling Ottoman nobles.

But when Nahri accidentally summons an equally sly, darkly mysterious djinn warrior to her side during one of her cons, she’s forced to accept that the magical world she thought only existed in childhood stories is real. For the warrior tells her a new tale: across hot, windswept sands teeming with creatures of fire, and rivers where the mythical marid sleep; past ruins of once-magnificent human metropolises, and mountains where the circling hawks are not what they seem, lies Daevabad, the legendary city of brass, a city to which Nahri is irrevocably bound.

In that city, behind gilded brass walls laced with enchantments, behind the six gates of the six djinn tribes, old resentments are simmering. And when Nahri decides to enter this world, she learns that true power is fierce and brutal. That magic cannot shield her from the dangerous web of court politics. That even the cleverest of schemes can have deadly consequences.

After all, there is a reason they say be careful what you wish for…

Piranesi by Susanna Clarke

Piranesi’s house is no ordinary building: its rooms are infinite, its corridors endless, its walls are lined with thousands upon thousands of statues, each one different from all the others. Within the labyrinth of halls an ocean is imprisoned; waves thunder up staircases, rooms are flooded in an instant. But Piranesi is not afraid; he understands the tides as he understands the pattern of the labyrinth itself. He lives to explore the house.

There is one other person in the house—a man called The Other, who visits Piranesi twice a week and asks for help with research into A Great and Secret Knowledge. But as Piranesi explores, evidence emerges of another person, and a terrible truth begins to unravel, revealing a world beyond the one Piranesi has always known.

The Broken Girls by Simone St. James

Vermont, 1950. There’s a place for the girls whom no one wants–the troublemakers, the illegitimate, the too smart for their own good. It’s called Idlewild Hall. And in the small town where it’s located, there are rumors that the boarding school is haunted. Four roommates bond over their whispered fears, their budding friendship blossoming–until one of them mysteriously disappears. . . .

Vermont, 2014. As much as she’s tried, journalist Fiona Sheridan cannot stop revisiting the events surrounding her older sister’s death. Twenty years ago, her body was found lying in the overgrown fields near the ruins of Idlewild Hall. And though her sister’s boyfriend was tried and convicted of murder, Fiona can’t shake the suspicion that something was never right about the case.

When Fiona discovers that Idlewild Hall is being restored by an anonymous benefactor, she decides to write a story about it. But a shocking discovery during the renovations will link the loss of her sister to secrets that were meant to stay hidden in the past–and a voice that won’t be silenced. . . .

The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow

In 1893, there’s no such thing as witches. There used to be, in the wild, dark days before the burnings began, but now witching is nothing but tidy charms and nursery rhymes. If the modern woman wants any measure of power, she must find it at the ballot box.

But when the Eastwood sisters–James Juniper, Agnes Amaranth, and Beatrice Belladonna–join the suffragists of New Salem, they begin to pursue the forgotten words and ways that might turn the women’s movement into the witch’s movement. Stalked by shadows and sickness, hunted by forces who will not suffer a witch to vote-and perhaps not even to live-the sisters will need to delve into the oldest magics, draw new alliances, and heal the bond between them if they want to survive.

There’s no such thing as witches. But there will be.

Home Before Dark by Riley Sager

What was it like? Living in that house.

Maggie Holt is used to such questions. Twenty-five years ago, she and her parents, Ewan and Jess, moved into Baneberry Hall, a rambling Victorian estate in the Vermont woods. They spent three weeks there before fleeing in the dead of night, an ordeal Ewan later recounted in a nonfiction book called House of Horrors. His tale of ghostly happenings and encounters with malevolent spirits became a worldwide phenomenon, rivaling The Amityville Horror in popularity—and skepticism.

Today, Maggie is a restorer of old homes and too young to remember any of the events mentioned in her father’s book. But she also doesn’t believe a word of it. Ghosts, after all, don’t exist. When Maggie inherits Baneberry Hall after her father’s death, she returns to renovate the place to prepare it for sale. But her homecoming is anything but warm. People from the past, chronicled in House of Horrors, lurk in the shadows. And locals aren’t thrilled that their small town has been made infamous thanks to Maggie’s father. Even more unnerving is Baneberry Hall itself—a place filled with relics from another era that hint at a history of dark deeds. As Maggie experiences strange occurrences straight out of her father’s book, she starts to believe that what he wrote was more fact than fiction.


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Top Ten Tuesday: Holiday/Seasonal Freebie

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This weeks theme is:  Holiday/Seasonal Freebie


For this week’s Top Ten Tuesday Seasonal Freebie I’ve gone for a bit of variety with a selection of book covers.  Some of these are books with a festive theme, some simply have colours or themes that seem wintry. There’s at least one sequel amongst the list (Shiang, the first book is Darien, just in case you’re wondering), and at least one series beginning with The Bear and the Nightingale.  I’ve linked the covers to my reviews where possible in case anything catches your eye. On to the books…

             

                  

                


So, have you read any of the books that made my list this week?  If so, what did you think of them? See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Want to Read Again

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Books I Want to Read Again


Re-reading, it’s something I don’t do very often, if at all, but my selections for this week’s topic are a mixture of books that I would like to re-read or books I wish I could read again for the first time.

I was surprised to notice when making my list that most of the Stephen King books that feature must have been from my pre-blogging days as I don’t seem to have written reviews for any of them, which could be a great reason to read some of them again. I’ll list those together first…

The Dark Tower series by Stephen King – There’s no way I couldn’t list this series first as I’ve mentioned many times before that I’d like to re-read it someday. The only thing that makes me hesitate is that there are 8 books in total and some of them are really long. It’s probably going to happen though. Maybe!

The Shining by Stephen King – I’ve always thought this would be a good one to re-read during autumn but it recently occurred to me that the family goes to the Overlook for a winter stay, so actually it’s also a great winter re-read too. Any excuse to revisit a book that I found pretty creepy at times. Room 217, I’ll say no more.

11/22/63 by Stephen King – It’s been a while since I read this and it’s one I would certainly be tempted to pick up again, to see how much I enjoy it on a re-read.

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton – I’d love to experience this for the first time. It was such a unique take on the country house murder mystery and I was intrigued as to what was going on.

Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry – The central duo of Gus and Call make this one worth the re-read. There are more books featuring those same characters so perhaps I’ll check some of those out too.

The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell – I enjoyed the writing, the characters, the atmosphere of the house and the creepiness of the wooden figures that were possibly moving around when no one was watching. One to pick up during the dark nights of autumn I think.

The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey – I would love to experience my first read of this all over again. I remember seeing the synopsis for the first time and being completely intrigued. I couldn’t wait to discover the story and I enjoyed it when I did.

       

The Powder Mage trilogy by Brian McClellan – I was really sad to reach the end of this fantasy trilogy and bid goodbye to some wonderful characters.

       

The Winternight trilogy by Katherine Arden – Perfect for winter evenings of reading.

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie – Not a wish to relive my first read exactly, I saw the movie version before I read the book and had no clue as to how the case would be resolved. I had great fun reading the book but I wonder if I’d have picked up more clues if I’d read rather than watched it first. I doubt it as I don’t think I’ve worked out whodunnit in any of the other Christie novels I’ve read so far.


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Top Ten Tuesday: Super Long Book Titles

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Super Long Book Titles


This week on Top Ten Tuesday… a collection of books with long titles.
The only order here is that i’ve gone from longest title to shortest. I’ve read some of these and have linked to reviews where possible but some of this week’s list are books on my TBR list/pile that I hope to read at some point.

Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman

A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C. A. Fletcher

The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix

The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers

The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter by Theodora Goss

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton and also The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

The Unlikely Escape of Uriah Heep by H. G. Parry


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Top Ten Tuesday: Colours of Autumn

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Book Covers with Fall Colours/Vibes


This week Top Ten Tuesday is another opportunity to look at book covers, so here is a selection of covers in the colours of Autumn. As always I’ve linked each cover to my review in case anything catches your eye…

                                                 


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Top Ten Tuesday: My Fall 2020 TBR List

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Books on my Fall 2020 TBR List


Time to talk TBR lists which is always something I enjoy as there are so many books I want to read. I can’t guarantee I’ll be sticking to ten books this week but let’s see. I’m going to divide the topic into two sections this week because…

Readers Imbibing Peril has been happening through September and runs all through next month too. I set out some potential reads in my intro post, but have decided on a couple of other options since, so, for the rest of the challenge and therefore earning places on my Autumn TBR list are…

Wakenhyrst by Michelle Paver

Endless Night or Halloween Party by Agatha Christie

The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James

We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

Christine or Misery by Stephen King

NOS4A2 by Joe Hill

The Hill and King books are both pretty long so whether I’ll manage to read all of the above I don’t know.

Other books I am hoping to read over autumn include…

Dark Matter or Recursion by Blake Crouch – I enjoyed the Wayward Pines trilogy and so would like to check out other works by this author.

The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal

The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter by Theodora Goss

The Naturalist by Andrew Mayne

The House on the Strand by Daphne du Maurier


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Top Ten Tuesday: Cover Freebie

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Cover Freebie


Time for another Top Ten Tuesday! My first thought when I saw this prompt was to go with autumn-themed colours, but then I saw that’s coming up as a topic in a few weeks time, so this week I’ve decided to go in complete contrast to the vibrant colours of autumn and feature covers that are mainly dark coloured. I’ve linked the covers to my reviews in case anything catches your attention.

           

           

           

           


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.

Top Ten Tuesday: Books that Should be Adapted into Shows/Movies

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.  Click on the link for more info and to find out about future topics.

This week’s theme is:  Books that Should be Adapted into Shows/Movies


There are so many stories I would love to see adapted into shows or movies but I’ve managed to narrow it down to ten for this week’s topic…

The Dark Tower by Stephen King – I know there’s been a movie version, but this series is so long and there’s so much happening in it that it would make a really good long-running show and I’d love more of Mid-World and Roland and his ka-tet, especially in their younger days.

The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell – Would make a wonderfully eerie and atmospheric drama. A grand old house, wooden figures that can apparently move by themselves, plenty of atmosphere, this could be so good as a series.

Stoker’s Wilde by Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi – Bram Stoker and Oscar Wilde reluctantly teaming up to fight vampires would definitely be worth a watch. They could also make the sequel, Stoker’s Wilde West. I haven’t actually read that book yet, but vampire gunslingers and the Wild West? Yes please!

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton – A murder mystery with a twist, a grand old house, a cast of suspects. I really would love to see this as either a movie or a series.

Dracul by Dacre Stoker and J. D. Barker – A Dracula prequel, need I say more?

           

The Winternight trilogy by Katherine Arden – The story of Vasya and Morozko could be really magical and would make a great series.

           

The Winnowing Flame trilogy by Jen Williams – A tv series featuring Vintage, Tor and Noon, not to mention all the war beasts and the cringe-inducing insect-like monsters the Jure’lia.

A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C. A. Fletcher – Griz’s journey through a post-apocalyptic world in search of a man and a stolen dog would make a great movie.

The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock by Imogen Hermes Gower – This would make a marvellous and magical historical drama.

The Diviners by Libba Bray – 1920s New York,  flappers and parties and a young woman with a supernatural power. Oh, and a pretty scary adversary too.


So, what did you write about this week?
See you again next time for another Top Ten Tuesday.