by Janie Jones

Thank goodness it’s spring break.

I’ve made it through 8 weeks of this semester, and, in general, this semester has been going pretty smoothly.  However, life is got me feeling pretty burned out and it has been pretty hard to stay focused.  Mostly I’ve just wanted to read the stack of books I collected intending to read last summer.  Oh, and the new pile I bought myself from Thriftbooks when they were having a sale.  Big sale.  I paid on average only $3 per book with free shipping.

What I’ve managed to read lately:

  • Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter by Seth Graham.

Surprisingly good.  Much, much better than his Pride, Prejudice and Zombies.  I particularly enjoyed the effort taken to make it seem “realistic” and historical.  Graham did an excellent job giving depth of character to the fictional Lincoln and wove the vampire elements into history with great skill.  It was almost believable.

  • A Constant Heart by Siri Mitchell

Also surprisingly good.  I was expecting a period bodice ripper, but in fact, it didn’t contain a single “sexcapade.”  There’s not much really to this novel, but it is an interesting character study on life and love in the court of Elizabeth I and spins an amusing story if you like love stories.

  • Shameless by Karen Robards

An entertaining story with a decent plot and a few interesting twists.  It had a moderate “sexcapade” factor, but not as bad as I expected with at title like Shameless.  Don’t ask me why I gave it a try when I was expecting it to be smutty.  For some reason it caught my eye from the discount counter at Barnes and Noble and I read the first chapter in the bookstore before later deciding to buy.  I guess what brought me back for more was the female character who beats up her intended fiance when she tries to call off the engagement and in response he attempts to rape her.  It was refreshing, or I guess intriguing, enough to see a female character bludgeon a man to unconsciousness with a fire poker to buy and finish the book.

  • A Civil Contract by Georgette Heyer

Called the “modern” Jane Austen by some, I’ve enjoyed several other Georgette Heyer regency period novels, however, this was not one of her best.  I found it rather boring.

  • Juliet by Anne Fortier

Over all I felt this was an interesting work.  It straddled two worlds, one being present day, the other being medieval Italy.  I enjoyed the way the writer crafted the tale,  and I continued reading for the historical world and characters who made the book worthwhile, although I did not like the modern day main characters whom I found whiny, naive and unbelievable.

  • A Match for Mary Bennet by Eucharista Ward, O.S.F.

I really liked this Pride and Prejudice spin-off.  Ward kept fairly faithful to the Austen style, though perhaps falling short in the level of wit and humor Austen fans have come to love from the original Pride and Prejudice.  She took some liberties with certain characters, but overall told a tale of quiet, gentle and genteel romance.

Still unread from the summer (and my abandoned 101 in 1001 list item #20, the summer task of reading a book a week) Tess of the D’Ubervilles and A Stranger in a Strange Land sit unfinished on the bookshelf.  Two classics I very much want to read, but have so far found intensely boring.  Perhaps they’ll some day get finished.  After all I think it took me almost two years to get through Moll Flanders.

Well, it is spring break, I’m going to go catch up on my life.


One Comment to “TGISB”

  1. My favourite Heyer is Friday’s Child – laugh out loud moments abound.

    A Civil Contract is one of her later books and written when she was middle-aged and more realistic about marriage. If you read many Heyer novels, as I do, you’ll recognise Mr Darcy and Mr Rochester in several of them 🙂

    I’m not saying she was a plagiarist; rather, that she was influenced by her favourite authors. Her research was so meticulous, her novel about the Peninsula War was used to teach at Sandhurst (our army officer training school).

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