Scotland

Pride of Lions by Marsha Canham

707252Pride of Lions by Marsha Canham
Dell Publishing Company: 1997
Genre: Historical Fiction
Source: Purchased secondhand

Beach vacation
suitcasesuitcasesuitcase

This has been on my to-read list for at least a year, and I finally got around to purchasing it secondhand recently. Unfortunately, it’s old enough that it’s difficult to find at the library.

I expected this to be a historical romance along the lines of Julie Garwood, but was pleasantly surprised to find it more substantial than that.

It still has all the classic romance tropes, so if that’s your thing then you’re sure to like this book. (more…)

Top 10 Books to Read While You Wait for Outlander’s Second Season

I waited with so much excitement and anticipation for the first season of Outlander. When I finally got my copy from the library (yep, still without cable, still not torrenting, still not buying episodes on iTunes), I started watching it immediately. As excited as I was, I still had no idea how much I would love the series. Fellow book adventurers, I finished the whole season in a WEEKEND. I did not do so many things that I was supposed to do this weekend.

The series remains very faithful to the plot of the book, the costumes are perfect, the scenery is gorgeous, and the acting is so good I felt just as immersed in the show as I did in the book. Well, almost. I do remember “knowing” the characters better after I read the series the first time, than I did after watching the TV series.

Knowing how addicted I am, and how much more I am anticipating the second season than I did the first, I’ve decided to put together a list of books I (and you) can come back to whenever I’m (we’re) feeling withdrawal from Outlander.

The list (and more), after the jump…

(more…)

Lady Darby is back in ‘A Grave Matter’

18693717A Grave Matter by Anna Lee Huber (Lady Darby #3)
Berkley, June 1, 2014 (Historical Mystery)

My Rating: I’m going there again! (4/5)

I have been dying for the next Lady Darby book since I finished Mortal Arts – a year ago. This series has had me hooked from the get-go and I have yet to be disappointed. A Grave Matter was another great installment and ahead of me stretches another long wait until book 4. *Sigh*

Grave Matter picks up a couple of months after Mortal Arts. Kiera is now staying with her brother, Trevor, and grieving the loss of her friend Will. While attending a Hogmanay Ball hosted by her aunt and uncle, Kiera is once more drawn into an investigation when the neighbouring lord’s caretaker is murdered and old bones are stolen for ransom.

What’s great about Grave Matter is the fact that Kiera is more of an established investigator now. She is asked to investigate by those outside of her immediate family, and because of her new found renown, Kiera is also asked to bring inquiry agent, Sebastian Gage, into the mix. Readers of the previous two books should be aware of Kiera and Gage’s less than stable relationship, so Kiera is reluctant to contact Gage since she knows that it will change their dynamic considering how things were left in Mortal Arts.

So what makes Grave Matter so great? Let me explain… (more…)

Classics: The Shadowy Horses

shadowyhorses The Shadowy Horses by Susanna Kearsley
Publisher: Jove
Date: March 1st 1999
Genre: Fiction / Paranormal
My rating: Outstanding adventure
This novel went way beyond my expectations, into “truly delightful” territory. I had expected something a little less fiction and a little more fluffy (Kind of like Elizabeth Lowell, who writes stories involving art history, book history, studies of artifacts, etc. – but whose writing is not nearly as good).

This novel has a perfect mix of history, romance, and mystery.

The plot begins immediately, with an archaeologist re-tracing her route on a bus after managing to sleep through her train stop. She’s received a teasing letter from an old flame about an amazing dig in southern Scotland, and is on her way to the Scottish borderlands to find out if she wants to work on it. The man financing and leading the dig has a reputation for being a bit mad, which she doesn’t find out until she meets him. It turns out he’s looking for the fabled Lost Legion, the Legio IX Hispana.

The author throws in a ghost – “The Sentinel” – and a psychic boy, which at first I thought I wouldn’t like. Fortunately, the supernatural stuff does not ruin the story or the characterization, both of which are compelling.

(more…)