Lieutenant and Mrs. Lockwood by Mark Bois

bookshelves: spring-2014, historical-fiction, napoleonic, published-2014, bermuda

Read from May 11 to 19, 2014

 

Description: Here begins the story of Lieutenant James Lockwood, his wife Brigid, and his deadly rivalry – professional and romantic – with Charles Barr. Lockwood and Barr hold each other’s honor hostage, at a time when a man’s honor meant more than his life. But can a man as treacherous as Charles Barr be trusted to keep secret the disgrace that could irrevocably ruin Lockwood and his family?

Against a backdrop of famine and uprising in Ireland, and the war between Napoleon and Wellington, showing the famous Inniskilling Regiment in historically accurate detail, here is a romance for the ages, and for all time.

Opening: Bermuda April 1815: Captain Barr desperately wanted to kill Lieutenant Lockwood. He thought constantly of doing so, though he had long since given up any consideration of a formal duel. Lockwood, after all, was a good shot and a fine swordsman; a knife in the back would do. And then Barr dreamt of going back to Ireland, and of taking Brigid Lockwood for his own. Or perhaps he might kill her as well. He had so many options open to him.

I was in the mood for a light hist fic and this fitted the bill just right: lagom, if you will. Packed with banter and observations that made up for the weakish storyline. If pushed to a higher critique I would say the intrigue was somewhat front-loaded.

Whatever, solid 3* on this whimsical, thunder and lightening Monday.

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The Narrative of Cabeza de Vaca by Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vac

bookshelves: spring-2014, film-only, spain, north-americas, mexico, under-20, adventure, anthropology, autobiography-memoir, cannibalism, casual-violence, christian, desert-regions, dodgy-narrator, doo-lally, epic-proportions, magicians, mental-health, mythology, napoleonic, ouch, recreational-homicide, sussex

Read on May 03, 2014

 

Cabeza de Vaca (1991)

Description: The dramatic narrative tells the story of some of the first Europeans and the first-known Africans to encounter the North American wilderness and its native inhabitants. It is a fascinating tale of survival against the highest odds, and it highlights Native Americans and their interactions with the newcomers in a manner seldom seen in writings of the period.

Expedition des Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca 1528 bis 1536

We open up in the year 1536…

This film is, as far as I can tell and am open to wiser interpretations, based on the short report (80 pages) by de Vaca entitled ‘Naufragios’.

Wiki sourced bio:

Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca was born around 1490 into a hidalgo family, the son of Núñez and Teresa Cabeza de Vaca y de Zurita, in the town of Jerez de la frontera. Despite their status as minor nobility, the family had modest economic resources. In 16th-century documents, his name appeared as “Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca”.

Forbush and the Penguins

bookshelves: one-penny-wonder, antarctica, published-1965, zoology, under-20, sciences, shortstory-shortstories-novellas, debut

Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: Charles
Read from April 16 to 24, 2014

 

Description: ‘Forbush and the Penguins’ is the story of a young man on a solitary mission in Antarctica who finds the challenge of being “the only man in the world” as enriching as it is terrifying.

The main man is hunting down the film whilst I hunt for book bargains. Thanks Charles, this definitely looks right up my alley/down my street.

HUZZAH – found a ‘v. good condition’ one-penny-wonder

Dedication: FOR LYNDSEY

Opening: When the helicopter had gone and its sound was no more than a minute concussion of the air on the eardrums Forbush stood in the centre of the ring of stones to look up at the smoking mountain, Erebus, and ask for a safe conduct through the summer. In return he pledged truthfulness, the will to try.

The pages are sepia coloured but clean and barely opened, so my guess is that this has stood on a shelf since 1965.

Shackleton’s motor car

Mount Erebus

The Adélie Penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) is a species of penguin common along the entire Antarctic coast, which is their only residence.

Hayley Mills with John Hurt, set before the antarctic journey

“Mr Forbush and the Penguins”

The Morepork (Ninox novaeseelandiae), also called the Tasmanian spotted owl, is a small brown owl found throughout New Zealand, Tasmania, across most of mainland Australia and in Timor, southern New Guinea and nearby islands. This bird is the smallest owl in Australia and is the continent’s most widely distributed and common owl.

The bird has almost 20 alternative common names, most of which – including mopoke, morepork, ruru and boobook itself – are onomatopoeic, as they emulate the bird’s distinctive two-pitched call.

MacCormick’s Skua

sea leopard

seal

The Count of Monte Cristo

bookshelves: re-visit-2014, re-read, revenge, epic-proportions, betrayal, published-1844, france, seven-seas, pirates-smugglers-wreckers, treasure, napoleonic, spring-2014

Read from January 01, 1986 to April 23, 2014, read count: 2

 

I promised myself a re-acquaintance with this epic back when I was reading The Black Count, so this re-visit comes via the 2002 film, with Jim Caviezel in the lead rôle. Look at the stats for the book:

4.13* · 409,590 ratings · 10,981 reviews

Chateau d’If

The Count of Monte Cristo – Finding The Treasure

The Count of Monte Cristo – The Ball

Magnificant film with a distorted ending. All I want to do now is re-read the book from top to toe.

Désirée by Annemarie Selinko

bookshelves: hardback, one-penny-wonder, paper-read, published-1953, spring-2014, tbr-busting-2014, sweden, napoleonic, france, revolution, epistolatory-diary-blog

Read from February 22 to March 10, 2014

 

Translated by Arnold Bender and E W Dickes. Bender and Dickes, eh?

My edition was published by the Reprint Society Ltd., by arrangement with William Heinemann Ltd. 1954.

The pages are tissue thin and the print is super small; the dust jacket is in good nick considering it is two years older than I am. Page count of my edition is 510.

TO THE MEMORY OF MY SISTER
LISOLETTE
HER JOYOUS SPIRIT
HER GREATNESS OF HEART

Opening: PART I
THE DAUGHTER OF A SILK MERCHANT OF MARSEILLES

MARSEILLES, at the beginning of Germinal, Year II (the end of March 1794 by Mama’s old-fashioned reckoning.)

I think a woman can get her way better with a man if she has a well-rounded figure. So I’ve decided to stuff four handkerchiefs into the front of my dress tomorrow; then I shall look really grown up. Actually I am grown up already, but nobody knows that, and I don’t altogether look it.

From the frontispiece by Nancy Mitford:

In 1823 Désirée went to Sweden for good and was crowned queen, though always keeping in the background of public life.

It took perserverance to get through the diary of a fourteen year old yet Selinko did a good job of character progression and we wound up with a sensible woman. Needless to say I found the Swedish connection very interesting. Whilst I could not recommend this to anyone, it was good to get it off the TBR Mountain.

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