Weekly Reading Round-Up
I’m still on my 1920s kick in preparation for the new book, so it’s been a Brideshead Revisited week for me– although I did finally get my hands on Carlos Ruis Zafon’s The Shadow of the Wind, which I’m itching to read.
What have you been reading this week?
Slow reading week for me. I read Deanna Raybourn’s new prequel, Whisper of Jasmine. It has me hooked.
I read Loyal in Death which was very good, but the series needs to be read in order and it’s not everyone’s cup of tea.
I also read Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan, Lynburn Legacy #1. It was really dark but I am reserving judgment until I get around to reading the second one.
I just signed out The Winter Sea, but it’s very long which is making me nervous.
The Winter Sea looks long, but the story is so well written that it reads quickly. I have read all of Susanna Kearsley’s books and this is by far my favorite.
I second that, Alice!
I can’t remember the order in which her books are supposed to be read. Can anyone help me out? Thanks!
Winter Sea should definitely be read before The Firebird. Also helps if you read Shadowy Horses before The Firebird, but not totally necessary. Winter Sea and Shadowy Horses aren’t really related to each other, except that each of them is related to The Firebird (I hope I explained that in a way that made sense).
All other books are standalone.
I read the Scribbling Women anthology of essays by romance writers (including the divine Deanna Raybourn, which was why I bought it) about their own, true love stories. It was really charming. I’m still working on The Beacon at Alexandria, I can’t seem to bring myself to finish it and have it be Over.
Incidentally, I had the same reaction to Brideshead, to the extent that, years later, I still haven’t actually finished that book. Having seen the miniseries, I know how it ends, and leaving just one chapter left unread means that that incredible, incredible book will never be over. (Probably my favorite book of all time ever.)
I’m reading Murder of Crows by Ann Bishop now. Before that I read City of God by Sara Miles and Garden of Marvels by Ruth Kassinger.
I was out of town (cruise!), and think I may be forgetting some, but here goes:
Three time travel books in a row, one by the wonderful Elizabeth Chater the name of which I have forgotten, two YAs byRachel Harris, My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century, and A Tale of Two Centuries, cute.
I am certain there are more
Elizabeth Chater did a time travel? I’ve read about a dozen of her Regency romances and wish you could remember the title of that one.
“The Elsingham Portrait”
Mrs. Chater was my mother-in-law.
I really liked “The Shadow of the Wind!” It was creepy and intriguing.
I’m in the middle of Susanna Kearsley’s “The Splendour Falls” and MJ Rose’s “The Collector of Dying Breaths.” Both are excellent so far, but I’ll admit I’m getting through Susanna’s faster. I think her writing is fantastic.
Oh, I just got my book club to read Brideshead for next month! So excited!
What I’ve been reading, I finished the newest Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences book, such Steampunk fun (out end of March).
Now I’m reading Cress. Which I should have mentioned in the “if you like fairy tales retold” post. The series is my Marissa Meyer and the first Cinder, is a retelling of Cinderella, the second one, Scarlet, is about Little Red Riding Hood (and was a little flat), the newest is Cress, about Rapunzel, and it’s such fun. Futuristic retelling with evil magic people on the moon. The final book, Winter, based on Snow White, comes out early next year.
It was a slow reading week for me because I’m obsessed with Covert Affairs and watched way too many episodes of it this week. I did read The House of Hades, the fourth book in Rick Riordan’s Heroes of Olympus series. I highly recommend it. His books are always entertaining and fast paced. I started Jamaica Inn by Daphne Du Maurier today.
Christina, I love Jamaica Inn and read it several times when I was a teenager. Perhaps it is time to pick it up again? If you enjoy it I also highly recommend the 1980s TV Mini series of it with Jane Seymour and Trevor Eve. It has recently been released on DVD and captures the novel beautifully.
I’m in the process of re-reading Tracy/Teresa Grant’s Rannoch/Frasier series – in chronological order this time. Tracy has just started a book discussion group on Google and it’s fun to disect the books. I’m also going to be brave and start “Wolf Hall” by Hilary Mantell next – it’s very thick!
Does anyone have any views on where the best place to start with the Rannoch/Frasier series is? I’m a bit foxed by the name changes and the fact it seems to go back and forward in time. Should I start with Secrets of a Lady (which seems to be the first one she wrote), or somewhere else?
I read them in order of publication and I liked starting from the end then learning more of the background. Very different experience from most books/series and lots of “AHA so THAT’S why that happened” moments.
Rachel, The chronological order of the Rannock/Fraser novels/novellas is: His Spanish Bride, Vienna Waltz, Imperial Scandal, The Paris Affair, The Paris Plot, Beneath A Silent Moon, The Berkeley Square Affair (to be released in late March), Secrets Of A Lady and The Mask Of Night.
In the last few days Tracy has released an online collection of the Rannock/Fraser letters which is fabulous and really adds to the timelines in between books. The is a link to it in her website.
Thanks for the list -I couldn’t find mine to post the list. By the way, Tracy’s website is evry bit as interesting as Lauren’s.
Thank you both, that’s really helpful. I’ve ordered Secrets of a Lady – very interested to read a series that starts near the end (chronologically).
Thanks, Suzanne. I’m interested in these books, too, from what I hear everyone saying. Very helpful information.
This week I read Delicious by Sherry Thomas. At first, I was a bit disappointed (having loved Private Arrangements and His At NIght) – all the whisking between the present and past made it a bit disjointed. But yet again she managed to get me with the sheer emotional punch of her writing. I also re-read Desperate Duchesses because I was to remind myself how Eloisa James started off the series. I’ve now started Outlander – only twenty years after everyone else. I’m quite enjoying, rather than loving it, so far, but only 100 pages in.
I finished Winter’s Tale and am rereading Adriana Trigiani’s Very Valentine because her final book in this trilogy just came out – read Very Valentine and Brava Valentine in 2009 and 2010. Have been waiting for the new one.
As I am a big fan of audio books (I love to listen while I do boring or tedious stuff … and not having much time to sit still), and I got a chance to acquire the ENTIRE Sherlock Holmes collection by Arthur Conan Doyle, in chronological order as originally published in book form, on mp3, I have been on a major Sherlock Holmes jag. It would have been better with a more skilled reader, but it was pretty good … and over 70 hours long.
Next, will be a special treat (drum roll) Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase, and read by none other that Kate Reading. Those of you who have enjoyed the Pink books in audio will recognize her voice. Audible has recorded it, and the reviews are so far 4.9 out of 5 stars. I can’t wait! It is the first one of her books to be recorded, as far as I know.
BTW, thank you Lauren for introducing me to Loretta Chase. I believe it was a few years back that you recommended one of her books.
I just finished what I though was a stand-alone novel: Distant Dreams by Judith Pella and Tracie Peterson. This is an historical romance that takes place near Washington D.C. and chronicles the growth of rail travel. To say I loved it is an understatement. The unconventional heroine Carolina Adams refuses to marry and settle down with a husband and family because she is obsessed with the dawn of the railway age and the man she loves works developing the fledgling B&O Railroad. Fraught with setbacks and difficulties the story is captivating and gripping. I am now anxiously reading #2 in this trilogy. Stay tuned.