It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? December 10, 2018

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Good Morning!

It’s the start of another week. It’s Monday! What are you Reading is hosted by Kathryn from Book Date, this is a weekly event to share what we’ve read in the past week and what we hope to read, plus whatever else comes to mind.

This is my last week at my job so I am not sure how much I will be able to read.  To be honest this week will be very depressing I have been with my company for 12 years and I will miss all the people that I work with day to day.

You are here to see books so onto what I read last week.

Last Weeks Books
I have a list of books that I started but put down for one reason or another but I was able to actually finish 1.

The Miniaturist

The Miniaturist
 by Jessie Burton, Josefina Caball (Translator)

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Set in seventeenth-century Amsterdam–a city ruled by glittering wealth and oppressive religion–a masterful debut steeped in atmosphere and shimmering with mystery, in the tradition of Emma Donoghue, Sarah Waters, and Sarah Dunant.

“There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed . . .”

On a brisk autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman arrives in Amsterdam to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt. But her new home, while splendorous, is not welcoming. Johannes is kind yet distant, always locked in his study or at his warehouse office–leaving Nella alone with his sister, the sharp-tongued and forbidding Marin.

But Nella’s world changes when Johannes presents her with an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of their home. To furnish her gift, Nella engages the services of a miniaturist–an elusive and enigmatic artist whose tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in eerie and unexpected ways . . .

Johannes’ gift helps Nella to pierce the closed world of the Brandt household. But as she uncovers its unusual secrets, she begins to understand–and fear–the escalating dangers that await them all. In this repressively pious society where gold is worshipped second only to God, to be different is a threat to the moral fabric of society, and not even a man as rich as Johannes is safe. Only one person seems to see the fate that awaits them. Is the miniaturist the key to their salvation . . . or the architect of their destruction?

Current Reads:
The Aeronaut's windlass

The Aeronaut’s Windlass by Jim Butcher
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Jim Butcher, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Dresden Files and the Codex Alera novels, conjures up a new series set in a fantastic world of noble families, steam-powered technology, and magic-wielding warriors…

Since time immemorial, the Spires have sheltered humanity, towering for miles over the mist-shrouded surface of the world. Within their halls, aristocratic houses have ruled for generations, developing scientific marvels, fostering trade alliances, and building fleets of airships to keep the peace.

Captain Grimm commands the merchant ship, Predator. Fiercely loyal to Spire Albion, he has taken their side in the cold war with Spire Aurora, disrupting the enemy’s shipping lines by attacking their cargo vessels. But when the Predator is severely damaged in combat, leaving captain and crew grounded, Grimm is offered a proposition from the Spirearch of Albion—to join a team of agents on a vital mission in exchange for fully restoring Predator to its fighting glory.

And even as Grimm undertakes this dangerous task, he will learn that the conflict between the Spires is merely a premonition of things to come. Humanity’s ancient enemy, silent for more than ten thousand years, has begun to stir once more. And death will follow in its wake…

I am also reading this next book.  It was kindly sent to me by the author and I was not as timely as I would have hoped. I am enjoying it.

List of 13
List of 13
 by E.A. Comiskey
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Death sucks, but there’s good beer in Purgatory.

Alice and her adult daughter, Claire, created a “bucket list” of thirteen experiences they would seek out before Alice died from cancer. They never expected to die in a plane crash attempting to cross off number three. Now, mother and daughter are stuck in the underworld, unable to move on to their ultimate destiny until they finish the list, but finding an Irish Pub near the Fields of Asphodel, or swimming naked in the ocean while being pursued by bloodthirsty Aztecs and a smitten Egyptian god is as hard as it sounds. When everything they ever thought they knew is challenged, will faith be enough to carry them through?

A LIST OF 13 moves between the time after Alice’s death and the time before, allowing the reader to explore the way her relationships evolve and intertwine throughout her life and beyond.

What are your reading plans this week?

Let’s chat in the comments below!

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Wrap Up

November 2018 Wrap Up

Good Morning Everyone,

So November came and went and I don’t know how it passed by so quickly.  Somehow I was able to read a total of 7 books.

Jamaica Inn by Daphne du Maurier
4 Stars
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Beauty and the Clockwork Beast by Nancy Campbell Allen
4 Stars
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Chroma Crossing Chronicles: Blood Moon Part 1 by S. Yurvati
3 Stars
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European Travel for the Monstrous Gentlewoman by Theodora Goss
5 Stars
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Manners and Mutiny by Gail Carriger
5 Stars
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A Holiday by Gaslight: A Victorian Christmas Novella by Mimi Matthews
5 Stars
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The Kooky Kids’ Club by Robbie Yates
5 Stars
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How was your reading the month?

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New Releases

Book Tour: The Kooky Kids Club by Robbie Yates

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Maxine is smart, quirky, and a bit of a misfit. One day, she receives a mysterious invitation to a meeting of the “Kooky Kids’ Club.”

 Things are looking bright. It’s nice to finally have a real group of friends. Then Maxine’s teacher disappears.

 Maxine doesn’t know what happened to her beloved teacher, or how she can help. But if anybody has the smarts to help Miss Thompson, it’s Maxine and the Kooky Kids’ Club…

 This quirky chapter book is for the best kind of kids—the ones who are a little bit kooky!

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Excerpt Purple

One morning the following week, Maxine felt a gentle nudge as she came in from recess. She looked up. A girl with blonde hair handed her a small folded note. Her name, “Maxine James,” was printed neatly on the front.

Surprised, Maxine glanced up, but the girl just shrugged. She didn’t seem to know what the note was about either.

Maxine unfolded the note carefully so she wouldn’t tear the paper. She hoped it wasn’t nasty, but something about the handwriting on the front told her that this was something special.

Dear Maxine

Maxine folded the note back up and slipped it into her pocket. She bit her lip. Who were these kids, and what did they want with her?

She was baffled but curious. And when the lunch bell rang, she hurried toward the library, keeping her eyes peeled for a boy in green.

Purple Review

I have not read many children’s books in the last few years now that my daughter is a teenager. So I was not sure what I was going to think about this and I was so surprised to find how much I loved it. I really wish that this book was around when my daughter was younger. The main theme of this book is show kids that it is okay to be different and to embrace it. Maxine our main character grows so much in this story.  She learns that being different is okay and should be celebrated.

To be perfectly honest I would love to see this book in schools. I think this is important for all children to learn and maybe Maxine’s story can help give them confidence.

I recommend this story to anyone that has young children.

5 Stars

Author Bio Purple

Hipster breakfast egg characters with mustache, beard, black bowler hat and glasses. Creative design holiday poster eggs cups. drawn gentleman faces vintage style. gray background.
Robbie Yates is an author from Melbourne, Australia. He likes cocoa, cheeky poetry, and eating all of the red jellybeans before anybody else can get to them.

In his free time, Robbie likes to read ridiculous and wacky kids’ fiction. He also likes practical jokes and terrible puns.


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November 2018 Book Haul

Good Morning Everyone!

Another month another book haul.  I have to say I had a lot more control this past month compared to previous months. But this was also the month of pre-orders.

Books I Bought


Shades of Milk and Honey by Mary Robinette Kowal   |   Add to Goodreads
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Vol. 1 by Alan Moore   |   Add to Goodreads
Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan    |   Add to Goodreads


Empress of All Seasons by Emiko Jean   |   Add to Goodreads
Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri    |   Add to Goodreads

Black Friday Sale (I got all 3 for $16)


Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson    |   Add to Goodreads
Firefight by Brandon Sanderson    |   Add to Goodreads
Calamity by Brandon Sanderson    |   Add to Goodreads



A Holiday by Gaslight by Mimi Matthews   |  Add to Goodreads
The Dark Days Deceit by Alison Goodman   |  Add to Goodreads


The Brilliant Death

The Brilliant Death by Amy Rose Capetta   |  Add to Goodreads

Well, that is a wrap.  What did you get this month?

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New Releases

Book Blitz: April in Atlantis by Alyssa Day

April in Atlantis
Alyssa Day
(Poseidon’s Warriors #4)
Publication date: November 5th, 2018
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

She’s Poseidon’s first and only female warrior…

When April, Poseidon’s first-ever female warrior, meets Pine–“don’t call me a werewolf” — prince of the European wolf shifters, she saves his life and then gives him the finger, because the sound of his sexy Scottish accent when he said “I think I’m in love, lass” gave her shivers in places shivers had no right to be. She’s a warrior, not a werewolf groupie. But now she’s trapped between the werewolf who wants her and the werewolf who wants her dead.

He’s Europe’s werewolf prince…

Pine wanted April the moment he saw her, just before she saved his life. Then he knew he must make her his. But the appearance of his long-lost and presumed-dead twin complicates Pine’s plans, and this time it’s April’s life at stake. Together, April and Pine are so much stronger than they are apart, but the heat between them may be enough to burn down the world.

Can two such unlikely allies find their way past danger to love? Or will mutual seduction be the beginning of the end?

Warning: This book contains magic, Atlantis, Poseidon, warriors, a wolf shifter, an evil twin, archery, wolf cubs, Europe, Scotland, Scottish accents, a king and queen, sibling rivalry, a black sheep, bad boys, paranormal romance, fantasy, matchmaking, laughter, danger, kisses, and a happily ever after. Read at your own risk!

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You can also grab book 1 – January in Atlantis – for FREE!

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Atlantis, the war room adjacent to the throne room, April 1st…

April stalked back and forth past the scarred wooden table that dominated the room, fists clenched at her sides, muttering creative suggestions under her breath in ancient Atlantean as to what the king and Denal could do with their idea. She’d expected to be kicked off the team after she’d been so rude to the man she’d only later found out had been an actual freaking prince. Instead, they’d hit her with this.

King Conlan, tall, dark, and gorgeous in that uniquely Atlantean royalty lineage way, leaned back in his chair and raised an eyebrow. “I’m not sure the throne would fit up my ass, and if Cerberus ripped my arms and legs off, my wife and son might be rather annoyed with you.”

She froze. “You heard that?”

Denal, one of the king’s elite fighters and now the leader of her team of Poseidon’s Warriors—or Denal’s Desperate Dozen, if you hung out in taverns for any time at all—blew out a sigh and shoved his hands into the pocket of his faded jeans. “You see, Conlan? Hopeless. This is a terrible idea. Also, April, I know you haven’t spent much time around royalty–”

“Try none.”

He continued as if she hadn’t spoken. “But a little respect might be nice. Or I’ll take you to the training grounds and kick your ass.”

She scowled. Unfortunately, this was a threat that carried some weight. Denal had been a warrior for longer than she’d been alive, because Atlanteans lived very long lifespans. He was unbelievably hot, in that “look at me and I’ll kill you” feral kind of hot way, but she hadn’t the slightest interest in bedding him. She just wanted to impress him.

To impress the king.

Great start, fool.

She abruptly knelt and inclined her head. “My apologies, your highness, if I have offended you. Well, of course I offended you. Gah. I mean, the throne up your ass thing might have come across worse in translation…”

She smacked her forehead. After muttering dire insults to the king, she was now questioning whether he could understand ancient Atlantean, the language of his royal ancestors.

Maybe she could stab herself in the kidney next and get the pain over with faster.

Conlan laughed.

He laughed?

“April. For Poseidon’s sake, get up. And if you call me ‘your highness’ again, I’ll be the one kicking your ass on the training grounds. My sword play is a little rusty these days, but I can take on a youngling like you.”

She leapt to her feet, a hot rush of denial searing up her throat, ready to boil forth in a mass of words, when her brain kicked in: He’d said a youngling.

Not a female.

She was a youngling, compared to his five hundred or so years, so it would be ridiculous to be offended, and she was getting tired of looking for offense from every corner. She’d made it—she’d been accepted into Poseidon’s Warriors, even if on a misfit kind of team.

“Look.” Denal strode over to her and poked her in the shoulder. Hard. “Try not to be a jerk. I’m telling you, as the head of this insane team of misfits, that you’re going to be an ambassador to the wolves.”

She refrained from poking him back and gave herself a hundred points for her massive amount of restraint. “For how long?”

“A year.” Denal studied her face and then glanced at the king, whose face was impassive. This was Denal’s decision, then.

“Six weeks,” she countered, without much hope, but it was fun to watch that nerve in Denal’s jaw jump.

“Six months, and if you argue with me again, it’s going to go back to a year,” he said, his eyes narrowing.

“I’ll take it.”

“Good call.”

The king stood up and stretched. “I have politics to play, crushing boredom to endure. Or maybe I’ll go chase my son around the garden for a while. April, do a good job. If you put me in the middle of the wolves’ civil war, we’re going to have a problem.”

His eyes darkened, and the genial king façade disappeared, so that April saw the dangerous predator lurking beneath. Conlan had been a fierce warrior for hundreds of years before he took the throne, and she could tell that nothing had changed.

“Yes, your highness,” she stammered, taking a step back.

Conlan’s face lit up with a huge grin. “You did it! I warned you. Now you can meet me on the training grounds in an hour for a bout. You’d better warm up your sword arm, warrior, because I’m not holding back.”

Denal groaned. “Don’t hurt my newest team member, Conlan. Do you know how hard it is to find good fighters?”

April blinked. He thought she was a good fighter?

“It’s not hard at all,” the king said, his calm voice completely at odds with his narrowed eyes. “Or else somebody at the younglings’ training academy needs to lose his or her job.”

Denal raised his hands. “Fine. It’s not hard to find good fighters, but it’s hard to find people with the skills and temperament to be one of Poseidon’s finest, as you well know.”

He thought she had the skills and temperament to be one of Poseidon’s finest?

April swallowed. This meeting hadn’t gone at all like she’d imagined. She’d thought she was going to be booted off the team. Instead, she found out she was one of Poseidon’s finest, who was going to be an ambassador to the European wolves, after she sparred with the king.

She needed a drink.

Conlan pointed at her. “One hour. Be there or I’ll track you down.”

She nodded to them both and then walked out of the room. Maybe she’d have that drink after her sword fight…

With the king.

Of Atlantis.

In one hour.

She started running.


Author Bio:

Alyssa Day is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than forty novels filled with kissing, laughter, mystery and magic. Alyssa’s paranormal series include the Poseidon’s Warriors and Cardinal Witches paranormal romances and the Tiger’s Eye Mysteries paranormal mysteries. In an Alyssa Day book, the good guys (and gals!) always win and happily ever after always prevails!

Alyssa’s many awards include Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA award for outstanding romance fiction, and the RT Reviewer’s Choice Award for Best Paranormal Romance novel of 2012. Her books have been translated into a zillion languages but she’s still holding out for Klingon.

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New Releases

Book Blitz: City of Masks by Ashley Capes

City of Masks
Ashley Capes
(Bone Mask Trilogy #1)
Publication date: August 14th, 2016
Genres: Adult, Fantasy

A noble daughter burdened by power she never sought.

Perched on an unforgiving coast, the city of Anaskar is under threat from enemies within. Its own royal family feuds over possession of sentient bone masks of power, leaving Sofia Falco, daughter to the city’s Lord Protector, to foil a conspiracy designed to strip her father of both his title and powerful Greatmask.

A bitter mercenary accused of murder.

Yet when disaster strikes, Sofia is forced to flee the palace and into the city where she crosses paths with mercenary Notch. But Notch has his own problems – accused of murder, he must fight to clear his name, all the while hunted by the city’s robed assassins, the very people who are now searching for Sofia.

A young Pathfinder seeking vengeance.

Meanwhile, far across the western desert, Pathfinder Ain must overcome his doubts and leave on a hopeless quest. To restore his people to their rightful home, he must unlock the ancient mystery of Anaskar’s Sea Shrine and the gargantuan sea beast that lurks beneath its harbour. Yet all who have gone before him have failed…

Follow three unlikely heroes on an epic fantasy adventure where the struggle over bone masks of power threatens to tear their city – and kingdom – into shreds.

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Learn more about City of Masks!

What were your cultural influences for the world creation for The Bone Mask Trilogy? Why those?

The main influence was probably Italy for setting it was the coast of Amalfi in particular. The historical city was perched on the coast and actually slid from the mountain into the sea in the 14th Century so there’s a bit of that influence on the city of Anaskar itself.

I also found smaller details from the region fun to incorporate into the setting, particularly the fire-lemon which is similar to limoncello, and a lot of the naming conventions are Italian-influenced with some Latin too. For a quick example, one character is named Lupo which would make his name “Wolf” in English. I followed such naming conventions throughout the city with people and placenames ─ all save the city itself Anaskar. (It’s not strictly very Italian-sounding because it’s actually a city that has been named by the previous occupants so I didn’t want it to sound too Italian influenced.)

I think Italy has ended up the biggest influence because back in 2011 (when I first had the idea for a city under threat by a sea monster) my wife and I were in Italy and we were immediately smitten by the country ─ it was one of those once in a lifetime trips and I think I was just keen to soak in everything.

City of Masks weaves together politics, history, culture, and the action in this book. What kinds of research influenced the politics of your world?

Thanks! I drew upon monarchies and tribal systems mostly ─ always looking at where power lies in a group, I guess. Is it shared or is it guarded jealously? If it’s disrupted, who takes what is left? Those sorts of questions are fun to explore as a writer.

I remember reading a lot about various royal families who always featured a brother or son (or uncle) keen to knock off a few family members on their way up to the throne. I think it was the shadowy Richard III that I recall the most.

I think all political structures tend to have an undeniable element of personality; the forceful, confident or clever tend to have the ability to direct others, no matter their title or lack of. With the desert-dwelling Medah people, for instance, despite there being multiple elders in the Cloud clan it’s clear that Raila is holds the most sway; she tends to command the most respect in the group.

Do you have a playlist that you used while writing City of Masks?

Sort of! Nothing like a specific playlist on Spotify etc, but here’s some of the albums that I remember playing quite a lot during the writing (and editing) of the story:

Pink Floyd – Animals

Prince – Sign o the Times

Killswitch Engage – Alive of Just Breathing

Opeth – Ghost Reveries

Black Sabbath – Heaven and Hell

Yo Yo Ma – Silk Road Ensemble

Janko Nilovic – Rythmes Contemporains


Chapter 1

            The chill of prison bars against his temple did little to ease Notch’s headache. Decades of dank didn’t help either, nor snoring from another cell, where someone was impersonating a bear. Or dying. In the poor light it was hard to tell.

Notch squinted. Noon sun barely crept through the small, grated windows on his side of the building. Even cells across the way were shadowed. Sunlight, in addition to a piece of bread and some water, were high points, while the straw ‘bed’ and stale body odour of criminals were typically unpleasant. Worse places than Anaskar City prison existed. At least he hadn’t been beaten yet – a twinge in his shoulder reminded him how much some guards enjoyed their work.

His cellmate raised his voice and Notch turned. The man had probably been speaking for some time; his drawn face was expectant. Years of imprisonment had washed out his Anaskari tan.

Notch leaned against the bars. “What is it, Bren?”

“Did you kill her, truly?”


Bren nodded. “Innocent then.” He knelt in the corner, his fine coat of blue long since gone to grime, his face pressed against the stone wall. “Listen to this one.” He scratched at an armpit with some vigour. “It’s hard to see but I think it says ‘death to the Shields of Anaskar’ and it’s got a signature, but I can’t make it out.”

Notch grunted. Nothing special for a convicted man to write; since waking on a pile of old blankets that morning and meeting his cellmate, he’d heard a dozen similar sentiments. Through Bren’s meandering introduction, Notch had winced, probing his body. Both arms and chest were heavily bruised and his head so fragile he wouldn’t be surprised to learn a wagon rolled over it last night. Possibly twice. He wasn’t drunk, though the smell of ale was on his breath. One damn drink, that was all.

And there was blood.

His leathers and tunic were splattered a dark red. Not his own blood, the City Vigil told him as much when they hauled him off the street, as if he couldn’t figure that much out. But whose? His own memory was unreliable, which made no sense. He hadn’t been drunk, truly drunk, since right after the war. When he bore another name. A name he left on some tavern floor, after making a convincing go of drinking the memories away. A good bath did for the sand on his body, but the blood-soaked sand in his mind? No amount of ale had washed that away.

And now the Vigil were telling him he’d been so intoxicated he had to be dragged to the prison?


“The Shields probably caught him doing something bad, that’s why he wrote this,” Bren continued, tapping on the wall. His too-bright eyes looked up at Notch.

“I’d say so.”

“Like us, Notch. We’ve done bad things, we have.”

“So you keep saying.”

Bren laughed, its shrillness cutting through Notch’s skull. If it hadn’t been unsettling, Notch would have thumped him, but there was something wrong with Bren. Any fool could see that.

“The guards say you’ve got a few days. That they can’t hang you sooner, because there’s too many in the queue. Waiting to hang.”

“Thanks, Bren.”

A moment of quiet fell between them. Distant voices drifted from beyond the prison walls. Notch clenched his jaw. He should have been out there. On his way to another job. The Blue Lady, a fat merchant ship, would have sailed with most of his possessions on board.

His father’s sword.

No chance of seeing it again. He wrapped his hands around cold bars and squeezed.

“The guards say it too, the guards say you killed her,” Bren said, unperturbed.

“I know.”

He crept forward. “So?”

“So I don’t remember.” He frowned. “But I wouldn’t harm a child.”

Chapter 2

            Blood blossomed on Sofia’s finger and she cursed, chisel clattering to the bench beside an unfinished mask. Bone dust stirred and a row of heads popped up in bright lamplight as young women in the Carver’s chamber turned to her.

“What’s wrong?” Pietta spun on her stool. Both her grey carver’s robe and face were smudged with fine white dust.

“It’s nothing.” Sofia wiped her finger on the rough fabric of her own robe. “Just a tiny cut.”

Pietta pointed. “It’s on your mask too.”

Sofia groaned. A pink smear marred the otherwise pristine surface of the mask. She had completed one eye. The groove for the mouth and ridges for nose and cheeks were already carved, but she’d have to start again if she couldn’t clean it. The Mascare would not accept a mask dishonoured by any stain. Not that it really mattered – the masks were just symbols of office, costume for tradition. A way to honour the past and intimidate the populace.

It wasn’t as though she was carving a Greatmask.

She wound a strip of fabric over her cut and reached for a small vial with a clear solution. A few drops and a dry cloth were enough to remove most of the stain. “That’s better.” She kept rubbing.

“Aren’t you annoyed?”

“Of course. But it’s not so bad.” Sofia grinned. “I’m still one mask ahead.”

Pietta glared at her, but her own smile was not far behind. She kept her voice low. “You know, I heard the Mascare might open the order to common folk. To bolster numbers.”

“That’s just a rumour. Father said it’s only being discussed.”

Conversations hushed and chisels slowed. Two figures approached. Lady Alda escorted a Shield across the chamber. He stared directly ahead, as if unaware of the sets of eyes trained upon him. Captain Emilio. Youngest member of the Honour Guard.

Pietta stared up at him but Sofia saw only the grave expression on Lady Alda’s plump face. “Sofia dear, that will be all for today. The Lord Protector has returned. He wishes to speak with you. Captain Emilio will escort you.”

“Has something happened?”

“Not here.” The two ushered Sofia toward the exit. The scrape of chisels resumed. Alda pulled open the large doors, their beaten-steel surface showing a looming mask and chisel. Sofia glanced back. Pietta’s expression was caught between worry and envy, as the doors swung shut.

Author Bio:

Ashley is an Australian novelist, poet & teacher. You might have read his epic fantasy ‘The Bone Mask Trilogy’ or maybe you’re familiar with his other work, the fantasy/adventure series ‘The Book of Never.’ Either way, you can read more about his books and get access to giveaways and free books via his newsletter below 🙂

Ashley occasionally dabbles in film, is addicted to 80s cartoon shows and Studio Ghibli films, and finds himself constantly awed by the simple beauty of haiku. He is also convinced that ‘Magnum PI’ is one of the greatest TV shows ever.

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Memes · TBR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? December 3, 2018

It's Monday What are you reading.png

Good Morning!

It’s the start of another week. It’s Monday! What are you Reading is hosted by Kathryn from Book Date, this is a weekly event to share what we’ve read in the past week and what we hope to read, plus whatever else comes to mind.

This is going to be a crazy busy week.  My daughter has 3 days of performances at the end of the week and the rest of the week she has practices and somehow we have to work in a trip to the Orthodontist. So I am not sure how reading this week is going to go.

Last Weeks Books

Inheritance by Christopher Paolini
4 Stars
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It began with Eragon… It ends with Inheritance.

Not so very long ago, Eragon — Shadeslayer, Dragon Rider — was nothing more than a poor farm boy, and his dragon, Saphira, only a blue stone in the forest. Now the fate of an entire civilization rests on their shoulders.

Long months of training and battle have brought victories and hope, but they have also brought heartbreaking loss. And still, the real battle lies ahead: they must confront Galbatorix. When they do, they will have to be strong enough to defeat him. And if they cannot, no one can. There will be no second chance.

The Rider and his dragon have come further than anyone dared to hope. But can they topple the evil king and restore justice to Alagaësia? And if so, at what cost?

A Holiday by Gaslight
A Holiday by Gaslight: A Victorian Christmas Novella
by Mimi Matthews
5 Stars
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A Courtship of Convenience 

Sophie Appersett is quite willing to marry outside of her class to ensure the survival of her family. But the darkly handsome Mr. Edward Sharpe is no run-of-the-mill London merchant. He’s grim and silent. A man of little emotion–or perhaps no emotion at all. After two months of courtship, she’s ready to put an end to things.

A Last Chance for Love 

But severing ties with her taciturn beau isn’t as straightforward as Sophie envisioned. Her parents are outraged. And then there’s Charles Darwin, Prince Albert, and that dratted gaslight. What’s a girl to do except invite Mr. Sharpe to Appersett House for Christmas and give him one last chance to win her? Only this time there’ll be no false formality. This time they’ll get to know each other for who they really are.

Current Reads:
Carols and Chaos

Carols and Chaos by Cindy Anstey
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A lady’s maid and a valet become entangled in a yuletide counterfeiting scheme in this romantic Christmas YA adventure.

1817. The happy chaos of the Yuletide season has descended upon the country estate of Shackleford Park in full force, but lady’s maid Kate Darby barely has the time to notice. Between her household duties, caring for her ailing mother, and saving up money to someday own a dress shop, her hands are quite full. Matt Harlow is also rather busy. He’s performing double-duty, acting as valet for both of the Steeple brothers, two of the estate’s holiday guests.

Falling in love would be a disaster for either of them. But staving off their feelings for each other becomes the least of their problems when a devious counterfeiting scheme reaches the gates of Shackleford Park, and Kate and Matt are unwittingly swept up in the intrigue. Full of sweetness, charm, and holiday shenanigans, Carols and Chaos is perfect for fans of Jane Austen and Downton Abbey.

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