Mine by Robert McCammon

 

Description: Adrift in the 1980s and slowly losing her mind, a heavily armed former ’60s radical kidnaps a baby with the hope, deluded as it may be, of returning her life to simpler times. The child’s mother, though, isn’t about to take it lying down and, along with a tracker, begins a cross-country chase to get her child back.

Good enough for a flat-line three yet I despised all the drug hallucination scenes, and boy were they lengthy. zzzz

4* Speaks the Nightbird
3* Mine
4* Gone South

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Speaks the Nightbird (Matthew Corbett, #1) by Robert McCammon

 

Description: The Carolinas, 1699: The citizens of Fount Royal believe a witch has cursed their town with inexplicable tragedies – and they demand that beautiful widow Rachel Howarth be tried and executed for witchcraft. Presiding over the trial is traveling magistrate Issac Woodward, aided by his astute young clerk, Matthew Corbett. Believing in Rachel’s innocence, Matthew will soon confront the true evil at work in Fount Royal….
Evil Unveiled
After hearing damning testimony, magistrate Woodward sentences the accused witch to death by burning. Desperate to exonerate the woman he has come to love, Matthew begins his own investigation among the townspeople. Piecing together the truth, he has no choice but to vanquish a force more malevolent than witchcraft in order to save his beloved Rachel – and free Fount Royal from the menace claiming innocent lives.

4* Gone South
CR Speaks the Nightbird (Matthew Corbett, #1)

Somewhere down below there is a comment that this was written by a mid-life crisis guy who wasn’t having his bedroom needs resolved. Probably nearer the truth than said author would care to acknowledge. You can’t get away from the fact that this is written purely from a male POV, and some of it right from the playground and it would fail the Bechdel test in fine style.

However.

This was an eye-scorcher of epic proportions that at times felt rather long-winded and at other points I was breathless with anticipation. Quite the nail-biting period-piece murder-mystery.

Supernatural? No.

Horror? Hell no.

Just a riveting story that could have been a five star if McCammon shown more style, and have dropped a couple of scenes that were graphic and pointless.

Four Spanish coins from the belly of a turtle.

Roger’s Version by John Updike

bookshelves: one-penny-wonder, paper-read, hardback, hackers-and-computers, published-1986, summer-2014, abandoned, next, sciences, too-sexy-for-maiden-aunts, religion, sleazy, room-101, tbr-busting-2014

Read from November 26, 2013 to June 12, 2014

 

withdrawn from Kilmarnock College Library

4 opening quotes and I pick this one: god the wind as windless as the world behind a computer screen – Jane Miller, “High Holy Day”

Description from the inside front cover: As Roger Lambert tells it, he, a divinity school professor, is visited in his office one day by Dale Kohler, a young computer hacker who believes that scientific evidence of God’s existence is irresistibly accumulating.

Opening: I have been happy at the Divinity School. The hours are bearable, the surroundings handsome, my colleagues harmless and witty, habituated as they are to the shadows.

Did you hear this hit the wall? Doesn’t matter where in the world you are, if you didn’t hear the crash you would have felt the vibration. I want my trash reads to be clearly discenable as trash not couched in literary blurb so it is mistaken for a worthwhile encounter.

4* The Witches of Eastwick
AB Roger’s Version

Henry and June: From “A Journal of Love”–The Unexpurgated Diary of Anaïs Nin (1931-1932)

bookshelves: autobiography-memoir, spring-2014, too-sexy-for-maiden-aunts, published-1986, film-only

Read on May 04, 2014


Description: Taken from the original, uncensored journals of Anaïs Nin, Henry and June spans a single year in Nin’s life when she discovers love and torment in one insatiable couple. From late 1931 to the end of 1932, Nin falls in love with Henry Miller’s writing and his wife June’s striking beauty. When June leaves Paris for New York, Henry and Anaïs begin a fiery affair that liberates her sexually and morally, but also undermines her marriage and eventually leads her into psychoanalysis. As she grapples with her own conscience, a single question dominates her thoughts: What will happen when June returns to Paris? An intimate account of one woman’s sexual awakening, Henry and June exposes the pain and pleasure felt by a single person trapped between two loves.

Anais Min

Henry Miller

Nin and Miller

The Tribe by Stephen Poliakoff

bookshelves: play-dramatisation, published-1996, spring-2014, film-only, too-sexy-for-maiden-aunts, under-10-ratings, london, britain-england, cults-societies-brotherhoods, adventure, architecture, contemporary, lifestyles-deathstyles, ouch, casual-violence

Read from April 07 to 08, 2014

 

Description: The Tribe – Stephen Poliakoff (1998)
In this psychological drama, a real estate developer buys an old house in London, only to discover a group of bohemian squatters happen to be living there. While the developer intends to evict them, he soon finds himself intrigued by their lifestyle of free love and drug-fueled philosophical experimentation, and the longer he observes them, the more he longs to become a part of their world. Produced for the BBC, The Tribe stars Joely Richardson, Jeremy Northam, and Anna Friel.

From the interview with The Independent newspaper published today:

Poliakoff, the son of a Russian-Jewish father and Anglo-Jewish mother, grew up in a cultured household and attended Westminster School and Cambridge University. His fascination with the past stems from his parents, who were relatively old when he was born. “Their stories came from the 1920s and 1930s. They were both born just before the First World War, so that made all of the 20th century available.”

Chislehust caves.

Down House, today in the London Borough of Bromley was Darwin’s home.

3* Shooting the Past
2* Soft Targets
4* She’s Been Away
4* Playing with Trains
3* A Real Summer
WL Joe’s Palace
WL Capturing Mary
4* The Tribe

Young Henry of Navarre

bookshelves: published-1935, spring-2014, lifestyles-deathstyles, historical-fiction, biography, france, under-500-ratings, film-only, ipad, casual-violence, earlymodern16c-18c, epic-proportions, classic, families, gorefest, gulp, love, mental-health, military-maneuvers, newtome-author, ouch, poison, protestant, recreational-homicide, religion, revenge, roman-catholic, swashbuckler, too-sexy-for-maiden-aunts, tragedy, true-grime, war

Read from April 08 to 09, 2014


Description: Young Henry of Navarre traces the life of Henry IV from the King’s idyllic childhood in the mountain villages of the Pyrenees to his ascendance to the throne of France. Heinrich Mann’s most acclaimed work is a spectacular epic that recounts the wars, political machinations, rival religious sects, and backstage plots that marked the birth of the French Republic.

French Language, English sub-titles
Stars: Julien Boisselier, Joachim Król, Andreas Schmidt

[

Michel de Nostredame (depending on the source, 14 or 21 December 1503 – 2 July 1566), usually Latinised as Nostradamus.

Henry I, Prince of Joinville, Duke of Guise, Count of Eu (31 December 1550 – 23 December 1588), sometimes called Le Balafré (Scarface). In 1576 he founded the Catholic League to prevent the heir, King Henry of Navarre, head of the Huguenot movement, from succeeding to the French throne. A powerful opponent of the Queen Mother, Catherine de’ Medici, he was assassinated by the bodyguards of her son, King Henry III. (wiki sourced)

St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre began the night of 23-24 August 1572. Painting by François Dubois

Gabrielle d’Estrées et une de ses sœurs by an unknown artist (c.1594). Gabrielle sits up nude in a bath, holding (presumably) Henry’s coronation ring, whilst her sister sits nude beside her and pinches her right nipple. Henry gave Gabrielle the ring as a token of his love shortly before she died.

Assassination of Henry IV by Gaspar Bouttats


Reign 2 August 1589 – 14 May 1610
Coronation 27 February 1594
Predecessor Henry III
Successor Louis XIII
(wiki source) (hide spoiler)]

Terrific film based on H Mann’s biography of Navarre. Epically disturbing, fearsome and ghastly were those fanatical, religious times – so much blood spilt.

Highly recommended but there are some truly gruesome moments.

My Dirty Little Book Of Stolen Time

bookshelves: published-2006, paper-read, under-500-ratings, spring-2014, one-penny-wonder, fantasy, time-slip, love, too-sexy-for-maiden-aunts, denmark, copenhagen, amusing, next

Read from March 08 to 11, 2014

Description: In fin-de-siecle Copenhagen, part-time prostitute Charlotte and her lumpen sidekick, Fru Schleswig, have taken on jobs as cleaning ladies of dubious talent to tide them over the harsh winter of 1897. But the home of their neurotic new employer, the widow Krak, soon reveals itself to be riddled with dark secrets – including the existence of a demonic machine rumoured to swallow people alive. Rudely catapulted into twenty-first-century London, the hapless duo discover a whole new world of glass, labour-saving devices and hectic, impossible romance.

Many blurbs for this book, however this one is on the cover…

‘Unashamedley gleeful: a kind of topsy-turvy Jane Eyre with added time travel… Sit back, suspend your disbelief and enjoy’ Daily Mail

Dedication: For Matti, Raphaël and Laura

Opening: Last night I deamed I went to Østerbro again, flying towards my little quadrant of Copenhagen streets just as a fairy might, or a homing bird.

The beginning opens out in 1897 and our narrator is a street girl totally broke because her two main clients have abandoned her. The one to jail for fraud, and the other a bad oyster rendered him a metre under.

Too slapstick for my taste, although I am amazed at the scope that Liz Jemsen picks to wrie about.

4* The Rapture
4* The Uninvited
TR Ark Baby
2* My Dirty Little Book of Stolen Time
5* The Ninth Life of Louis Drax

Trivia: Liz Jensen is married to author Carsten Jensen:

5* We, The Drowned
3* I Have Seen the World Begin

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