Tag Archive | Jane Austen

Second Impressions: Short Stories Inspired By Jane Austen (Vintage Jane Austen)

I’m reviewing the short story collection Second Impressions today as part of the Vintage Jane Austen Blog Event. (All the VJA books are on a Kindle countdown deal this week, so get ’em while they’re discounted — or pick up lovely paperbacks! Find the links with my mini reviews here.)

So excited to share this sweet collection with y’all! 🙂

Title: Second Impressions: A Collection of Fiction Inspired by Jane Austen

Editor: Hannah Scheele

Authors: Hannah Scheele (Introduction), E. Kaiser Writes, Gail Bryant, Therese Peyton, Mikayla Holman, Jennifer Baxter, Hannah Jones

  • Date read: October 22, 2017
  • Rating: 5 stars
  • Genre: Short stories / Retellings (Jane Austen) / Contemporary / Historical Fiction / Fantasy / Kingdom Adventure / Sci-Fi
  • Age: Anyone
  • Year pub: 2017
  • Pages: 222
  • Series: Vintage Jane Austen (this is a bonus to go with it; it’s not actually in the 1930s like the others)
  • Source: I received a free e-copy of this book for review purposes; these opinions are entirely my own.
  • Links: AmazonGoodreadsAbout the Authors

The moment I read the opening line of the first story in this collection (from “Chocolate Surprise” by E. Kaiser Writes) — “It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single woman, in possession of any income at all, must be in want of some chocolate.” — I knew I was going to have the best time reading these stories. I was right. ^_^

From the lovely introduction right through each of these nine tales to the end of the collection, I was touched and charmed and smiling (or laughing), and overall delighting in finding these sweet gems, retelling or otherwise revisiting Jane Austen’s tales in many different colorful ways.

We have four set in modern times, two in the original time period (like a direct prequel and sequel), one in the 1950s, one non-magical fantasy, one kingdom adventure, and even a sci-fi story! Three involve Emma, two Pride and Prejudice, two Mansfield Park, and one each of Persuasion and Sense and Sensibility. I enjoyed them all!

Below are my mini-thoughts on each entry. Second Impressions (I love the play on titles, harking back to Pride and Prejudice’s early title “First Impressions”!) is a lovely add-on to the Vintage Jane Austen series. One thing is for sure: if you like Jane Austen’s works at all, you’re going to want to give these stories a try! 🙂

Introduction – Hannah Scheele

5 stars

Hannah collected a varied and sweet bunch of stories in the contest for this collection, designed absolutely gorgeous covers for the Vintage Jane Austen series, and wrote a delightful introduction too! This was a lovely introduction, full of heart and honesty and a touch of wit; perfect for the collection. I read it twice, before and after reading the stories. It made me happy. ^_^

Chocolate Surprise – E. Kaiser Writes

5 stars

At the beginning, I wasn’t totally sure which retelling this was, or if I’d like it, but pretty soon everything clicked and I was like “OH!” and the pieces fell together. And I loved the end! I also loved the letter, and Kingston was great. 😀 It’s set in the 1950s, and the color and detail was fabulous and so vivid. I shall allow you to discover the story it retells, yourself, but overall I really enjoyed it! 🙂

Gently Pursued, Finally Persuaded – Gail Bryant

5 stars

Aww, so sweet! 🙂 A Contemporary retelling of Persuasion, set in the 1990s, this was an unconventional love story, with a Christian theme and a thread of humor. It said this was the author’s first short story, but you would never have known it! The writing was well seasoned and full of clever or fun turns of phrases scattered throughout. The story left me with a smile. ^_^ Lovely!

The Secret of Pemberly Estate – Therese Peyton

4 stars

I wasn’t so sure about this one. It’s a direct sort of sequel to Pride and Prejudice, set in 1815. I had just re-read Pride and Prejudice, and some of the characters in this story seemed to act out of character, to me at least, and some of the plot confused me. It was, however, very original/thrilling/theatrical, like a mystery. Not my favorite, but it did have vivid imagery and was an interesting read. 🙂

Emma’s Irritation – Mikayla Holman

5 stars

Eep, I loved this one! It’s a sort of prequel, set a few years before Emma, and features a teenage Emma and her relationship with Mr. Knightley, as well as some scenes fans of Emma will find intriguing and fun. Mr. Knightley felt very Mr. Knightley ish! He was great. And I could imagine Emma herself being something like that as a teen. I loved the bantering dialog and fun! And just… really enjoyed it. 🙂

Mother’s Day – Jennifer Baxter

5 stars

Aww! ^_^ I can’t really explain this one without giving it away, somehow, but it was an extremely unique and touching twist on a Sense and Sensibility story in a modern setting. It’s very short, but every word counts, and just… I don’t know! It was subtle but just lovely. 🙂

The Mansfield – E. Kaiser Writes

5 stars

OH MY GOODNESS. This story! I never would have imagined Jane Austen in space would work as well as this did. The idea of Mansfield Park’s story taking place on a spaceship (instead of in a mansion) was genius and worked astonishingly well. The characters and dialog were great (the worldbuilding too) and the Mansfield Park story translated SO well to this new in-space setting that it was just delightful! 🙂 I don’t even read much sci-fi but this was great. XD

Elaina – Hannah Jones

5 stars

I was trying to categorize this, and I think I came up with Christian Fiction and the newly named Kingdom-Adventure genre. (There wasn’t really adventure? But hey.) This retelling of Emma set in a kingdom of knights. etc., and featuring her as a princess, was so neat! Again, it translated really well, and I thought that was great fun. 🙂 Amazing how well a little kingdom works to replace Emma’s small town!

Peace in the Orchard – E. Kaiser Writes

5 stars

Imagine Pride and Prejudice set in an idyllic, non-magical, fantasy-type kingdom where Mr. Darcy is a dragon-slaying king, and you pretty much have this one in a nutshell. XD There’s a lot of lovely description of this original, fantastic world, and it mainly focuses on the Elizabeth and Jane characters. The orchard scene at the end was my favorite. 🙂

Maid in Houston – Jennifer Baxter

4 stars

This was a Contemporary retelling of Mansfield Park, featuring a Hispanic heroine — who I quite liked — and a modern setting in Houston. It was a little strange to me, but had some lovely parts and overall it was a very good retelling of Mansfield Park, and so fluidly written and original! It’s about every-day people, and I loved that. The part at the end about love was beautiful. ^_^

~ ~ ~

The Vintage Jane Austen Blog Event

Check out the rest of the blog tour, and the giveaway!

November 5

November 6

November 7

November 8

November 9

November 10

November 11

Giveaway

As part of this special blogging event (November 5-11), we are giving away a $25 Amazon gift Card.

Enter to win HERE.

So what do you think? Does Second Impressions sound intriguing? Which story are you most curious about?

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer

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Persuasion Retelling: Perception by Emily Ann Benedict

Title: Perception
Author: Emily Ann Benedict

  • Date read: August 3, 2017
  • Rating: 5 stars
  • Genre: Historical Fiction (1930s) / Christian Fiction / Retelling (Jane Austen’s Persuasion)
  • Age: YA
  • Year pub: 2017
  • Pages: 198 (ebook)
  • Series: Book 4 in the multi-author Vintage Jane Austen series (but stands alone!)
  • Fave character: Freddy
  • Source: The author
  • Notes: I received a free advance reader copy of this book from the author (thank you!); these opinions are entirely my own.
  • Links: GoodreadsAmazonAuthor’s WebsiteSeries Website

Another excellent addition to the Vintage Jane Austen series! I’ve quite enjoyed reading each of these standalone retellings by different authors—all so different, yet similar too, and delightful one and all thus far! 🙂

This one is a sweet retelling of Jane Austen’s Persuasion, except it’s set in 1930s America during the Great Depression.

Perception is a lovely tale, in its own right, and also as a retelling. I so enjoyed all the parallels to Persuasion—which is one of my favorite of Austen’s novels—and also the twists and how it fit into a new era. It was fascinating how well this story translated to the ’30s, featuring Captain Wentworth’s character (Freddy, in this one) as a post-WWI soldier, and Anne Elliot (Abbey, in this) as part of a once-rich family which has to rent out their home due to financial troubles of the Great Depression. It all fit SO. WELL. I loved that. 🙂

I loved the characters! Abbey was a relatable heroine (quite liked her!) and Freddy was fabulous and unexpectedly fun sometimes. XD I quite liked some of the other characters too, like Freddy’s sister and her husband, and Sam. Many fun characters! I was impressed with how well-drawn the characters were, how some of them who in the original version I disliked, Miss Benedict’s writing managed to turn into characters that I either liked, or at least understood more and saw their side of things. Excellent character building!

The settings—both geographical and time-related—were quite well done too! It was interesting visiting Boston and Cape Cod and other places filling in for the old locations in Persuasion, and the 1930s feel felt very real—and I liked the old cars and such as a great touch. 🙂

Mostly, the plot and characters line up very well with the story it is retelling, but there were also a few surprising additions and twists which were super interesting! Like Abbey’s unexpected business venture, and other developments and surprises which were neat, and which I will not spoil. 😉

I also loved the Jane Watson cameo (so fun finding them in each of the books!!), and the few dashes of excitement and a snatch or two of unexpected peril, as well as the humorous bits of dialog from time to time. It was also kind of beautiful at times. ^_^

This author’s writing is lovely! It has a sort of quality to it that I can’t quite pinpoint, but was perfect for this story. I’m looking forward to trying more of her work. 🙂

Overall, this is a quite fun retelling of Persuasion, and a lovely clean romance of almost-lost-love, with a few surprises and even a dash of murder-mystery lurking in the background, all set in a well-drawn ’30s atmosphere, and skillfully penned. I quite enjoyed myself reading this, and definitely recommend! ^_^

Favorite Quotes

“So am I engaged to both of them now?” Freddy asked, smiling.

“I don’t think that’s legal, Freddy,” Bonnie replied drolly.

***

Abbey relaxed, grateful not only that someone had thought to throw a party for her, but that she had been able to escape attending.

***

Abbey could have laughed at Freddy’s appearance. He was clearly not yet sufficiently awake for this sort of conversation.

***

“You’re my guardian angel, Abbey,” she said as she climbed into the car.

“No, not really, Sam. I’m just a messenger.”

“But that’s what angels are. That’s how God says, ‘I’m here, and it’s going to be all right.”

***

“Tired physically, or tired of someone?”

Abbey couldn’t help smiling. “Tired of many someones, to be honest.”

“Do you want to talk about it?”

“I want to eat pasta.”

***

“I can’t settle for merely liking a man when I’ve known what it’s like to love one.”

~ ~ ~

Read my reviews for others in the series so far:

Have you read any retellings of Persuasion, or other Jane Austen books?

(Note to any potential reviewers: For a limited time, Emily Ann Benedict is currently looking for a few people to review this book on Goodreads and Amazon in exchange for a free download of it, so if you’re interested, do let me or her know! Thanks! You can also find the book at the links above.)

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer

10 Thoughts on Mansfield Park by Jane Austen

3.5 stars? (Rounding to 4)

Title: Mansfield Park

Author: Jane Austen

  • Date read: March 10, 2017
  • Rating: 3.5 stars, rounding up to 4-ish?
  • Genre: Classic / Historical Fiction (Regency)
  • Age: Adult
  • Year pub: 1815
  • Pages: (I read it in a collection with tiiiny type, so not sure it counts… Some edition is listed on Goodreads as 560 pages so I’m going with that)
  • Illustrator: Hugh Thomson (does two illustrations count?)
  • Fave character: Fanny, Edmund (sometimes)
  • Source: (Collection) from library sale
  • Notes: In collection Jane Austen: Her Complete Novels

[Mansfield Park on Goodreads — see my review on Goodreads here]

10 Thoughts About Mansfield Park

(in the form of things I liked and disliked)

LIKES

1. Fanny, poor thing, and how she stuck firm to right even though she was a timid introverted soul who was so Cinderella-ed (a word which here means trodden upon by jerkish relatives/acquaintances/“friends”, and basically treated like dirt. [Oh, joy.]) that it was painful to read. She was nice. 🙂

2. Edmund (sometimes; when he was being sweet and not A BLIND FOOL). He was an excellent character at times—so sweet and thoughtful and kind. 🙂 Especially in contrast to every other character in the book… Anyways, at times he was great! (We won’t talk about the other times, which is why they’re in parentheses.)

3. I had enormous fun connecting Cinderella parallels whether they were intended to be there or not. (I needed to make something fun in this…)

4. How everyone pretty much got their due at the end… more or less. It made it almost worth it.

5. On that note, it’s hard to explain exactly, but I did like the outlook on things. Putting value on being moral and standing up for your beliefs and a quiet life in the country, versus a life of vice and doing what everyone else does and city life; and doing all of it through the story and dialog, too. ’Twas well-done. (It does make me think that Jane Austen would hate living in our modern era. Just sayin’.)

Bonus like: a quote that I loved (the speakers are Edmund, then Mary Crawford, then Edmund again)

You are speaking of London, I am speaking of the nation at large.”

“The metropolis, I imagine, is a pretty fair sample of the rest.”

“Not, I should hope, of the proportion of virtue to vice throughout the kingdom. We do not look in great cities for our best morality.”

DISLIKES

1. Every character in the entire book, except Fanny, and her brother William, and occasionally Edmund, are all HORRIBLE HORRIBLE BEINGS. It’s exhausting to read a book about this. (Okay, maybe I’m being sliiightly unfair. There were occasional moments of almost-human decency scattered through the cast. BUT IT WAS RARE.)

2. Mrs. Norris. I LOATHED MRS. NORRIS. The stingy aunt of Fanny, she’s basically a cross between an evil-stepmother and the type of miser that Scrooge was trying to be all his life and never quite made it to, with a dash of thorough mean-spiritedness. SHE WAS HORRIBLE, OKAY. UGH. -_- One of the worst characters in the history of EVER. Excuse me a moment, I need to go scrub my memory with bleach to get rid of my memories of her…

3. Mary Crawford. Can I get another UGH in, please? Because UGH. She’s this frilly little light-hearted soul who blinds Edmund in a really stupid kind of love (I can’t see WHY) and pretends to be BFFs with Fanny, but is actually self-centered and has not a bit of good deep down, really, and is thick as thieves with her awful brother and thinks he’s amusing and the best. Blech. -_- Speaking of…

4. Henry Crawford. He’s awful. I didn’t loathe him as much as Mrs. Norris and Mary through most of the book, but he’s awful. He’s a worse person than they are, definitely. I mean, deciding to purposefully try to make a girl fall in love with him, just to break her heart? SERIOUSLY WHO DOES THAT? *is disgusted*

5. Basically, it was way too long to spend reading a 150,000+ word novel about horrible characters being horrible to a poor put-upon heroine, and all the characters being paired with the wrong characters through almost the entire book until like the last two pages (I’m not even exaggerating), in which all that happens is awful things to the heroine. IT WAS HARD TO HANDLE, OKAY. I don’t usually say books are too long, but I would have been okay with this being a third of the length instead of suffering through that. many. pages. Don’t get me wrong—it was well-written and I did enjoy things about it (see above) but the subject matter was just so unpleasant that I, personally, had a hard time reading it.

Conclusion

Overall, not my favorite, but regardless, Jane Austen’s still a fairly excellent author, and I’m very pleased to have finally read her 6 novels. 🙂

Have you read Mansfield Park, or any Jane Austens? Let me know what you think of them!

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Dream away in those pages…

~ The Page Dreamer

#MarchMagics/Nightstand Books {March 2017}

Time for a look at the books on my nightstand this month and at what I’m up to for #MarchMagics!

(Nightstand Books is a monthly meme created by DJ Edwardson and Jenelle Schmidt.

March Magics [formerly DWJ March] is a celebration of the works of Diana Wynne Jones and Terry Pratchett, hosted by Kristen @ We Be Reading.)

Non-March-Magics-Nightstand

I’m currently working through Mansfield Park by Jane Austen, and King’s Blood by Jill Williamson — both of which are not for the faint of heart! (Or at least not for the faint-of-arm since they are large.)

Mansfield Park is… interesting. It’s the last Austen I haven’t read and in a sense I’m enjoying it (especially comparing it to Cinderella a little) — though in another sense I’m spending a lot of time absolutely loathing Mrs. Norris and the Crawford siblings and… most everyone else besides Fanny and Edmund. XD

King’s Blood is quite enjoyable so far — I missed Trevn and Wilek so much and didn’t realize it until I started reading! I don’t have much to say on it yet because I’m still reading, but I’ll have a full review of it up on my other blog when I finish. So far an excellent book and I can’t wait to finish!

Not pictured are a couple of beta-reads of books for friends, which I need to make some time for… Reading critically with an eye for editing and feedback takes a lot more effort than regular reading! But I’m looking forward to these. 🙂

IF I can (not sure if it will happen) I would love to be able to have time to read Dragonfriend by Marc Secchia which is this month’s bookclub read for the Fellowship of Fantasy… I enjoyed last month’s read (The Firethorn Crown) and this one looks fun, I just don’t know if it will take priority and if I’ll find the time… SO MUCH TO READ. (It’s an e-book, and I tend to have so many other things to do on my computer — beta-reading, writing, internet — that e-books don’t get read very often unless they’re for review. But we shall see!)

March Magics Nightstand

I actually read most of these last week already! I had a cold so I curled up with some DWJ books and a Terry Pratchett while I recovered, in honor of March Magics, and it was delightful. 🙂 (I should have been beta-reading at the time… but that requires editorial thinking and my brain was not up to that kind of level at the time while I was sick.)

Library acquisitions, I read Aunt Maria and Wild Robert by Diana Wynne Jones, both for the first time! Greatly enjoyed those — it’s always SO MUCH FUN getting to read DWJ books I’ve never read before! 🙂

I also read my second-ever Terry Pratchett book, Mort, for the first of the Pratchett read-alongs for March Magics. I enjoyed it muchly! (It was a timely library-sale conquest… which included a whole batch of Discworld books!)

Perhaps I shall do a mini-reviews post for these soon?

I re-read The Pinhoe Egg (final Chrestomanci book), also for the March Magics readalong (rather early because I couldn’t help it!), thereby finishing my re-reading-aloud of the Chrestomanci books. CHRESTOMANCI’S THE BEST! ❤

I also finished reading Howl’s Moving Castle for the 5th time and still found things I’d never noticed before. HOWL IS THE BEST! ❤ (I know I just said that about Chrestomanci. Hush. Both are true in their own ways. ^_^)

I’m still hoping to re-read Year of the Griffin (for the readalong on the DWJ Goodreads group) and if I can make time, I’d also love to read at least Reaper Man and possibly Soul Music for the March Magics continuing Pratchett readalongs, but we shall see!

I always plan for more books than I have time to read, unfortunately, and I’m very busy this month… However, I’ve already had some great March Magics fun so I’m happy with that even if I don’t get to any more. 🙂

So there you have my ambitious load of March books!

What’s on your nightstand this month, fellow readers? Have you read/want to read any of these? And have you added a Diana Wynne Jones book to your to-read-soon stack or list? (Hint: you totally should! ;)) Tell me your bookish adventures of late!

Thanks for reading!

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer

Fantasy Month Plans/Nightstand Books

nightstandfeb2017fantasy

Behold my hoped-for nightstand reads for February is Fantasy Month! (Rolling two different Jenelle-Schmidt-themed things into one since she and DJ Edwardson came up with Nightstand Books? XD)

These are the (visible) fantasy books I hope to try to read this month… mostly fantasy. 😉 Not pictured are a few beta-reads I must read (exciting! But not very photographable! XD). And I’m reading a Jane Austen (Mansfield Park, being the last one I haven’t read) because reasons.

  • King’s Blood — I’m reading this one for review and JUST LOOK AT ITS GORGEOUSNESS. AND ENORMITY. I may be at this one for awhile. XD It’s big enough that I’m trying not to be too ambitious for my other reading this month. o.o
  • The Firethorn CrownThe Fellowship of Fantasy is reading this one this month as a book club read and it’s the perfect excuse for me to finally read the gorgeous copy I won last year and didn’t get around to reading. (#fail) But it’s a retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses so I’m excited. 😀
  • Howl’s Moving Castle — Speaking of book clubs, the Goodreads Diana Wynne Jones Fans group is reading HMC this month for a Valentine-ish read, and I need no excuse to reread one of my top two favorite books. ❤
  • Mixed Magics — I’m re-reading (aloud) my way through the Chrestomanci series, and this one’s next. Going to be fun. 🙂 This series is even MORE amazing on reread!

Posting Plans for February

February-Fantasy-Month-Banner

Sometimes I’m entirely planned out and have aaall my posts either ready or at least planned.

And then there are the other times.

This is one of those other times. 😉

But hey, let’s roll with it! I have no concrete plans for the month, but I hope to share a few fantasy book reviews throughout the month (if I can actually get around to writing them… >.>) and I may do a fantasy-ish tag thingamy. I don’t know! But hopefully some fun, regardless. 🙂

Fantasy Etc. Scavenger Hunt (Jill Williamson)

lostatseamapgraphicsmall-768x721

Also! There’s a fun (and mostly fantasy) scavenger hunt later this month that Jill Williamson and some other authors are holding to celebrate the release of King’s Blood — so you simply must mark your calendars for February 17-19 because it looks like so much fun.

There’s also a super-cool giveaway for a signed copy of King’s Blood on the post about the hunt (this giveaway runs till the 7th I think?) so go enter! 😀

AND THE MAP. Jill made this GORGEOUS map for the scavenger hunt, visiting the worlds of the various books/worlds of the authors on the stops AND IT’S SUCH A BRILLIANT MAP AND I LOVE IT. (I mean, look how the USA and Europe are on there… and the space stations to the sci-fi books appear to be in Florida and Russia(?) like in real life, and Leira (from Orphan’s Song and Songkeeper) is by a desert, and just… it’s brilliant okay and I love it and can’t wait, so I had to mention it. XD

So! There’s a peek at some of my plans for this month! Do you have any?

Thanks for reading!

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

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Title: Northanger Abbey

Author: Jane Austen

review

I’m in a bit of a conundrum, as it’s perhaps a 3-star book, but Henry Tilney is by all means a thoroughly 5-star fellow… So my 4-stars is an (unsatisfactory, no doubt, to all parties…) attempt at consolidating the two thoughts…

I read this for the Northanger Abbey Read-Along held by Amber Stokes @ Seasons of Humility, and I’m so glad I did! (Of course, I had been quite diligently reading a chapter per day, give or take; but quite failed in drawing it out over the last few days and had to finish early. ;))

My general lack of patience with (read: loathing for) Isabella, Mr. Thorpe, and at points General Tilney, coupled with poor Catherine’s being rather trodden upon in “friendship” with the poisonous lacy cupcake known as Isabella, prevented my specifically “enjoying” most of the story. I can’t really read about characters being used in that way, or about nasty people, without my blood boiling and ending up greatly disliking it. It’s just a kind of story I can’t read, personally. Definitely a case of “it’s not you, it’s me.” (Unfortunately, this accounts for most of the book?)

But every instance which involved Mr. Tilney, as well as those parts with him and Catherine and Eleanor Tilney as a trio, were a delight and well worth the reading!

Tilney must rank up there with my favorite of the Austen heroes, methinks, following after Mr. Darcy but for quite different reasons! Henry is a delightful character, I loved his lines of wit and humor, and the part where he was frightening Catherine with his fabricated tales of horror concerning her arrival to the abbey, was hilarious. XD

Henry and Catherine make a sweet pair, and adding in Eleanor, make a very delightful set of companions, whom it would be a joy to hang out with!

The bits that were rather making fun of other books, which was fun, and Tilney (and his sister), make the book worth reading, and I’m quite glad to have (at long last!) read Northanger Abbey. 🙂

Now I need to reread Pride and Prejudice sometime, and I now really hope that Amber Stokes @ Seasons of Humility will hold another readalong for Emma or Mansfield Park someday so I can finally read those too, because I really like this readalong format. 😀

I’m just going to leave you with this fabulous quote from Henry which is further proof of his awesomeness. He and I would get along splendidly. XD

“The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.” — Henry Tilney, Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

(Hey, he said it, not me. ;))

(I quite apologize if all that comes out of this attempted review is that Tilney is awesome; I’m afraid I’m shallow like that. *cough*)

factoids

Genre/Category: Historical Fiction / Romance / Classic

Age Group: YA/Adult?

Published: 1817 (Whew! Nearly 200 years old!)

Pages: 192 pages

Series?: No

When Read: March 1 – 27, 2016

Favorite Character: Henry Tilney, naturally. 😉

Source: Read in a collection of all of Jane Austen’s novels which I found at a library book sale.

Other Notes: Read for the read-along at Seasons of Humility.


Thanks for reading!

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer

 

Reading Roundup #3: March 2016

ReadingRoundup2

Muchly belated, here are the many things I read in March! So much awesome reading. ❤

Here are some mini-reviews for a bunch of them and/or links to my reviews for the ones I reviewed in full… (Covers from Goodreads and all titles link to their pages on Goodreads as wel.) Enjoy! 🙂

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1. Blood Ties – Hazel B. West

Reviewed this on my other blog. Friendships and battles and Faerie and modern/medieval Ireland, huzzah!

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2. A Spy’s Devotion – Melanie Dickerson

Reviewed this. Lovely Regency romance! Melanie’s amazing at this time period, just like I thought she’d be! 🙂

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3. Comet in Moominland – Tove Jansson

Well, strike me pink, that was a rollicking delight of fun and charming oddness! (Especially reading it aloud with British accents, because it did seem to call for it, despite the fact it’s originally Swedish.) I believe it’s quite possible that I’m now thoroughly addicted to the world of the Moomins!

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4. Moominsummer Madness – Tove Jansson

Ack, I love it! *huggles book* Snufkin is my FAVORITE EVER! ❤ He’s so awesome and just the best! And what he did about the signs . . . and his twenty-four little woodies — GAAHH SO CUUUUTE!!! ❤ I about died from the adorableness and awesomeness of this. Also, I love Little My. She’s hilarious. XD All in all, great little book! ❤

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5. The Exploits of Moominpappa – Tove Jansson

Yet another fun one! I loved getting to read Moominpappa’s memoirs — such escapades, such oddness, such fun! 🙂 Moominpappa has quite a “feel” to his storytelling. It’s great. Also the Joxter was fun — nice to know where Snufkin’s slightly lawless ways originated. 😉 So much fun! And I especially loved how the memoirs would pause occasionally as Moominpappa is interrupted in his reading by Moomintroll, Sniff, and Snufkin, as they ask questions about the story and their various daddies’ adventures. Loved that! And the way that it all came together at the end was marvelous. 😀 The Moomin books are just loads of bizarre whimsical fun.

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6. Deep Secret – Diana Wynne Jones

Read this for March Magics. Wow, what a book. o.o It was more adult than any DWJ I’d read before, but still so so good. It takes place almost entirely at a Sci-fi/Fantasy convention which was super fun. XD Also world-hopping and centaurs and just yes. I do mean to write a review, I just haven’t yet…

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7. The Beautiful Pretender – Melanie Dickerson

Reviewed this on my other blog. It was AWESOME! But then, it’s a medieval fairy tale romance story mixing Beauty and the Beast and The Princess and the Pea and it’s by Melanie Dickerson, sooo… of course it’s awesome. 😉 Possibly my favorite from her yet!

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8. Moominland Midwinter – Tove Jansson

A good wintry tale, another fun Moomin story. 🙂 Little My is the best. XD

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9. Northanger Abbey – Jane Austen

I FINALLY read this one! This was for Amber Stoke’s read-along over at Seasons of Humility. Really enjoyed the book on the whole! I could have wished for less of Isabella (UGH I hated her) and more of Henry Tilney, but still. 😉 Maybe I’ll post a more complete review at some point…

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10. Dreams and Wishes: Essays on Writing For Children – Susan Cooper

I don’t read a lot of nonfiction but I was excited to read these nonfiction essays by Susan Cooper about writing. While some of them may be on writing “for” children, this collection wasn’t really… It was a bit of a mixed bag for me. I didn’t like/agree with everything, but she did have a lot of good things to say about fantasy and such, so that was fun! Definitely glad I read it.

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11. Playing with Fire (Skulduggery Pleasant, #2) – Derek Landy

Another scary, action-packed fantasy tale in modern Dublin with Skulduggery Pleasant the skeleton detective! But most importantly, containing numerous witty lines (by Skulduggery himself, naturally) and lots of humorous banter between him and Valkyrie, because THAT’S what I really read these books for! 😉 I don’t think I liked it quite as much as the first one, but it was gripping and I find myself rather glad that it’s a book instead of a movie because with a book, it’s just the words and imagination; whereas if it was actually on a screen, it would probably be far too scary for me. 😉 And just think of all the dialog I’d miss in that case! o.o Skulduggery continues to be hilarious and awesome, the real reason I’m reading these things. I hope to have more awesome Skulduggery lines in the future… HE’S SO QUOTABLE AND FUNNY AND EPIC. Skulduggery’s the best. ❤

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12. Moominvalley in November – Tove Jansson

I was nervous that I wouldn’t like this one at first… but it turned out okay, so I was glad. 🙂 I’m not sure I liked the translator of this one as much? And it starts out rather melancholy and I wasn’t sure if I liked the characters much, but of course they grew on me. I thought it would be sad but it wasn’t. Yay! And of course I love Snufkin! 😉 It was awesome how everyone kept coming to his tent. XD And I really liked Toft too, he’s adorbz. Some of it was a little vague and hard to sort of grasp in your head if you know what I mean? And it definitely feels different than the other ones, probably mostly because the Moomins aren’t there… And kind of more shadowy and melancholy. But I ended up enjoying it more than I thought, and Snufkin in particular (and Toft) make it better of course! 🙂

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13. Rising Shadows – Ashley Townsend

Aaaand reviewed this one. So much enjoyable! Will… ❤ Really fun little book.

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I kind of read a lot in March! It was a good reading month.

Dream away in those pages . . .

~ The Page Dreamer