Top Ten Tuesday: Book Hangovers

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:  The Last Ten Books That Gave Me a Book Hangover


The book hangover, for me it’s that feeling of finishing a great book and just not quite being ready to leave the world and the characters behind.
Here are some book hangover-inducing reads I’ve enjoyed…

Stoker’s Wilde by Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi – One of my recent 5 star reads and I still haven’t stopped thinking about it yet. Can’t wait for the sequel!

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern – A book about books and stories, and magic and mystery and so many other things. I was engrossed throughout and kept thinking about The Starless Sea afterwards.

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon – A vivid world, some memorable central characters and a variety of dragons. Great stuff!

The Institute by Stephen King – This one has stayed in my mind even though I’ve read quite a few books since. The situation that Luke and his friends at the Institute found themselves in was awful, but the way they responded and dealt with things made this an exciting read.

A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C. A. Fletcher – A unique tale with a wonderful central character, this one stayed in my mind long after I put the book down.

The Poison Song by Jen Williams – A great conclusion to the Winnowing Flame trilogy. I didn’t want it to end but at the same time I couldn’t put it down.

The Autumn Republic by Brian McClellan – I didn’t want the Powder Mage trilogy to end but in this book it reached a great conclusion, and some of the characters went on to appear in the Gods of Blood and Powder trilogy, of which I’ve read two books so far. Which brings me to…

Wrath of Empire by Brian McClellan – This is the second book in the Gods of Blood and Powder series. I haven’t yet read the concluding book, Blood of Empire, but am really looking forward to it to find out how this trilogy will end.

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie – The eerie atmosphere, the isolated setting, the murder mystery, I loved it all.

The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey – A post-apocalyptic tale that I couldn’t put down. Melanie and Miss Justineau were such great characters and their adventures gave me a great page-turning experience.


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: Love 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:  Love Freebie


I’m looking at covers again for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday ‘Love Freebie.’
Sometimes, I’ll be browsing the bookshop/library shelves and a really striking cover is the very first thing to catch my attention and make me want to find out more about a book.
Here’s a selection of (more than ten!) lovely covers (linked to my reviews in case anything catches your eye) for this love-themed week on Top Ten Tuesday…


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.

Book Review: Stoker’s Wilde by Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi

Name:  Stoker’s Wilde
Author:  
Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi
Number of Pages:
384 (Paperback)
Published:
May 30th 2019 by Flame Tree Press
Genre:  Horror, Fantasy, Historical

Goodreads

Years before either becomes a literary legend, Bram Stoker and Oscar Wilde must overcome their disdain for one another to battle the Black Bishop, a mysterious madman wielding supernatural forces to bend the British Empire to his will. With the help of a European vampire expert, a spirited actress and an American businessman, our heroes fight werewolves, vampires and the chains of Victorian morality. The fight will take them through dark forests in Ireland, the upper-class London theater world and Stonehenge, where Bram and Oscar must stop a vampire cult from opening the gates of Hell.

My Rating:

My Thoughts:

Stoker’s Wilde unites Bram Stoker and Oscar Wilde in a thrilling quest to prevent London falling under the power of the enigmatic Black Bishop, an adversary intent on unleashing dark forces upon the world. Werewolves, vampires, and a rivalry and mutual dislike that could come between our two protagonists – heavy odds indeed. I think our duo will need some help…

The pair join forces with a vampire expert and the wonderful Henry Irving, an actor in residence at the Lyceum Theatre in London, who gives Bram a job as his theatre manager. Ellen Terry, an actress in the company, and Bram’s wife Florence also play their roles, and there’s also ill-fated Lucy. I loved these characters, especially Henry Irving.

The story unfolds by way of letters, journal entries and archive documents which makes for an immersive and varied reading experience – from a one page letter to several journal pages recounting incidents of derring-do. The journals and letters especially give unique voice to each of the main characters as we’re privy to their inner thoughts. The same incident may be recounted over a number of different sources, and watching it come together is intriguing.

I loved the voices of both Stoker and Wilde, who initially seem to have a mutual low opinion of each other, which only intensifies when Bram ends up marrying Florence.
For all the gothic horror, which is wonderful throughout the book, there are moments of genuine humour, usually centred round the way Bram and Oscar view each other despite events continually throwing them together as allies.

The story 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.
The conclusion I’ve drawn is that I’d love to go adventuring with Messrs Stoker and Wilde. Guess I’ll just have to wait for… Stoker’s Wilde West. Seriously. Go check out the premise for the next novel. The Wild West? Vampire gunslingers? And the return of the great duo of Stoker and Wilde. Sounds like one to watch out for.

 

Top Ten Tuesday: 5-Star Reads?

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:  Books On My TBR I Predict Will Be 5-Star Reads


5-star reads, I had two last month, which was a lovely reading surprise, and now it’s time to look ahead at my massive TBR pile and select books I think may also become 5-star reads for me…

The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow – I love the sound of this, and I’ve seen many great reviews. It also has a gorgeous cover, not that you should let that influence you, but it does! You could say I’m looking forward to starting this.

Dracul by Dacre Stoker and J. D. Barker – A Dracula prequel that I’ve been wanting to read for a while now. I hope after all this time it turns out to be worth the wait.

The Poison Song by Jen Williams – The final Winnowing Flame book. I’ll be sad to see it end but I also can’t wait to get back to this world and these characters.

The Other People by C. J. Tudor – A new-to-me author and if I enjoy The Other People I’ll probably check out some of Tudor’s earlier books as well.

The Guest List by Lucy Foley – The Hunting Party was good, and the synopsis for this gives me And Then There Were None vibes, so it could be great. I like a good murder mystery! Speaking of which…

Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie – I’d like to read this before the new film version comes out, and see if I can work it out before Poirot no doubt solves the case. It will be a first if I do, but I never mind being wrong.

Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz – A murder mystery with a bookish theme too. Sounds good!

Circe by Madeline Miller – Another beautiful looking book that’s been waiting on my TBR pile for far too long.

The Dirty South by John Connolly – I’ve only read the two latest Charlie Parker books but I want to read more of the backlist titles and I’ll be looking out for this latest as well.

Blood of Empire by Brian McClellan – Final book in the Gods of Blood and Powder series. I’ve enjoyed the previous in this series, and the Powder Mage trilogy, so I really hope this latest offers a great conclusion.


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.

Booking Ahead: February 2020

Booking Ahead is an opportunity to glance through my never-ending TBR list/pile and select a few potential reads for the coming month. If I’m not reading books I love talking about books I’d like to read, so this post is a perfect excuse to do just that.

Welcome to the first Booking Ahead of 2020.
I’ll be choosing a mix of new book and older titles as I’ve signed up for Beat the Backlist again and want to see how many books I can read from my TBR pile.

New Books

The Other People by C. J. Tudor – I’ve never read anything by this author and I’ve seen some good reviews for this latest so thought I’d check it out and possibly try some of her backlist titles if I enjoy this.

Books from the Backlist

The Poison Song by Jen Williams – This is the final book in the Winnowing Flame trilogy. I’ve enjoyed the adventures of Vintage, Tor and Noon and can’t await to get back into this world again.

The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett – I finally decided I’d discover Discworld from the beginning. I can still always change my mind and go for one of the series within the series later on, can’t I, but for now I’ll see where it all began.

Dracul by Dacre Stoker and J. D. Barker – I’ve mentioned this book before, more than once, but it’s definitely the closest to the top of my TBR that it’s ever been, so hopefully I’ll read it soon!!


What are you hoping to read this month? Have you read of my picks, and if so what did you think?
See you again next month for another Booking Ahead.

Top Ten Tuesday: Cover Version

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:  Book Cover Freebie


For this week I’m keeping it fairly straightforward – here is a rainbow of pretty book covers for your enjoyment! I’ve added links to the ones I’ve reviewed just in case anything catches your attention and you want to find out more.

           

           

           

Time’s Convert by Deborah Harkness

The Outsider by Stephen King

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

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

Someone Like Me by M. R. Carey

Adrift by Rob Boffard

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

The Institute by Stephen King

The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden

Taken at the Flood by Agatha Christie


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.

Book Review: Hercule Poirot’s Christmas (Poirot #20) by Agatha Christie

Name:  Hercule Poirot’s Christmas (Poirot #20)
Author:  
Agatha Christie
Number of Pages:
272 (Kindle)
Published:
Published December 15th 2003 by William Morrow Paperbacks
Genre:  Mystery

Goodreads

In Hercule Poirot’s Christmas, the holidays are anything but merry when a family reunion is marred by murder — and the notoriously fastidious investigator is quickly on the case. The wealthy Simeon Lee has demanded that all four of his sons — one faithful, one prodigal, one impecunious, one sensitive — and their wives return home for Christmas. But a heartwarming family holiday is not exactly what he has in mind. He bedevils each of his sons with barbed insults and finally announces that he is cutting off their allowances and changing his will. Poirot is called in the aftermath of Simeon Lee’s announcement.

My Rating:


My Thoughts:

Time for another mystery with the great detective Hercule Poirot. I’ve read a few of the Poirot novels now, and picked this one up during the holiday season as it seemed the perfect choice.

Simeon Lee has invited his family home for Christmas. Sounds great, and yet the old man has apparently done it only to cause friction amongst his family, and the mention of a will and the prospect of alterations to said will almost guarantee he won’t feature in the tale for long.

Sure enough, he meets a swift end and there are plenty of suspects and truths to uncover. Lucky then that Poirot is on hand to offer assistance in the matter.

Hercule Poirot’s Christmas offers up a locked room murder mystery with a cast of characters harbouring secrets and resentments, and trying to work out whodunit was as usual part of the enjoyment reading this novel. One day I will actually come to the right conclusion, but so far it hasn’t happened. The red herrings and twists really kept me (wrongly) guessing.

I’m still enjoying discovering the Golden Age mysteries of Agatha Christie and am looking forward to choosing my new Poirot novel to read.