Light of the Spirit – Lisa Kessler

Welcome back everyone, we’ve reached the tipping point in the series. We’re over halfway!

If you’re familiar with the Greek Muses you’re probably wondering how I’m halfway through the series with four books down and three to go when there are 9 Muses. Well I’m not going to spoil it for you!

The previous three books were pretty action packed, yet this one felt like it had something else to it that I just loved. I’m not sure if it’s the introduction of more mythology and deities or not. Yet it’s becoming increasingly more like the Dark Hunter series.

There’s another character we’ve met previously becoming a central figure. There are unknown immortal beings wreaking havoc. Both sides of the battle are slowly having more and more information revealed to them.

There’s even that crucial input from the bad guys to keep it interesting. Unlike previous books, this one has more input from the bad guys including more people’s points of view rather than just Ted’s.  Between this and me reading the blurbs for future books I’m starting to map out my ideas of who’s who, who’s going to do what and why.

Let the conspiracies fly!

I have no idea how right or wrong I’ll be but I’m loving the drama, the additional input without lacking on the story of the two characters we’re meant to be focusing on. The balance still works even with more input from the bad guys.

Come back in another month to find out how the story develops in the fifth book!

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Altered Carbon – Force of Evil (Season 01 Episode 04)

  • Episode length: 53 minutes
  • Pages read: 32
  • Chapters read: 3

As I continue my comparison of the book to the TV show, I’ve found that they are in line again. But will it continue?

SPOILERS AHEAD – WON’T RUIN THE SHOW BUT WILL TELL YOU SOME THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT WANT TO KNOW BEFORE WATCHING/READING IT

SHOWBOOK
Kovacs wakes up in his own body with no enhancements and some defaultsKovacs wakes up in a female body with no enhancements
Kovacs remembers his training with Falconer to beat the virtual tortureKovacs remembers his friend Jimmy to beat the virtual torture
Kovacs gives the speech after waking up that convinces them to unlock himKovacs gives the speech in virtual that gets him released from the torture
Kovacs kills everyone in the facility after getting free and before leavingKovacs leaves with an escort then kills them while in the flying car
Kovacs leaves with Kadmins headKovacs leaves with a doctor’s head
Kovacs sees Ortega at the hotelKovacs goes back to kill everyone after escaping the car and avoids the cops as they arrive

Although Kovacs was tortured in both the book and the show, the show was much more graphic and detailed. Which explains why the book was short compared to it being so accurate to the show. Given books generally have more time and space to be more graphic I was a little surprised that this was the case.

The overall feel of the episode followed the book; however, I’m starting to see more and more differences. Which is ok!

Adapting a book to a film version does mean changes will happen. Which is great coz we get to see the writer’s interpretation of the book. And I’m excited to see what those changes will include!

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Wrap Up – March

Holy crap this month seems to have been a crazy month where the whole world went a little crazy with coronavirus. Like how does a beer’s stock price fall just coz some virus shares some of it’s name?! How silly can people be?!

In that time I’ve been able to kick start a new series and still posted 11 reviews.

I’ve been working a little more this month so haven’t spent as much time reading and I’ve also been spending time watching Altered Carbon and reading that for the series comparisons. Which means I’ve only read like 5 books this month.

I’m hoping by the time this goes live that it’s 6 books. But I’m not making any promises!

My Fav

This is a last minute change for me. I honestly can’t wait to be able to read the next book in the series and hope it won’t be too long until I can.

Because of this, I had to change from my previous choice, Summer in Provence. You’ll be able to see my full review in April.

My Least Fav

This honestly wasn’t a bad book and I have a review coming for this next week. Yet it had more flaws than the other books I read this month so somehow ended up here.

I also hate doing this coz it’s by an Aussie author and I don’t read many of those and I want to promote them rather than shoot them down.

So please come back next week to see all my thoughts about it!

Bookish Goals Progress

I was able to start my first book to film comparison with Altered Carbon and I’m feeling good about the progress. Especially given the positive feedback I’ve been getting for it. Although I’d still do it even if I didn’t have it since I don’t focus on stats and stuff too much.

I’ve managed to hold strong with Rachel’s tours so I can also get around to the NetGalley and other ARCs I have. Although I have been able to keep up with at least one book read a week which is good.

Once I finish reading Altered Carbon I’ll be 50% of the way through the A-Z Character challenge, while I’ve also been able to read one book for the Aussie Author Bingo challenge.

Personal Goals Progress

So fitness wise I took a slight backwards step from a couple of injuries but I’m getting back into it. I just need to be careful now that it’s starting to get colder so my asthma doesn’t flare up and really take me out of action.

Although with coronavirus going around, and talk of us all needing to self-isolate I’m not sure how all of that’s going to go. Although the gym I go to is giving us workouts we can do at home which is awesome.

Bones is also making some progress with his reactions to other dogs. We’re getting closer and closer to getting him to make his first doggy friend. I’m hoping with a few more buckets of water and some time we’ll get there. Slowly… O so slowly…

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Summer in Provence – Lucy Coleman

Welcome back everyone, after finishing off the second quartet from Emelan we’re back to Earth with a romance that doesn’t seem quite so perfect.

Like many books, this one spans quite some time. Unlike a lot of books, it spans from March 2018 through to December 2020 with a few pit stops along the way. As soon as I saw this structure in the contents, I knew a lot would have to happen and that I’d probably love it. Especially since I’m a fan of the authors previous works.

The journey Lucy follows in this book is one many couples go through. Having been together since they were in school, getting married and buying a house shortly after graduating uni, they never really had a chance to be young and free. They never dated around, never did the gap year traveling thing.

In Fern’s case, she hasn’t slept with anyone other than her husband.

In many ways they grew up and matured together without discovering and forming their own individual identities. I believe this is what “rushing into things” means. In this case it leads to a gap year in their marriage. A year away from each other, their jobs, their home and everything they’ve known so far.

It’s a year to discover who they are separate from each other before coming back together to continue life as they’d previously known it.

Of course, what’s the point of a story if there’s no drama, right? Well, with love interests, discoveries of new talents, family hiding secrets etc this book is filled with slow burn drama that boils over into an amazing ending. There’s one detail I don’t like about how Aiden behaves. But if I tell you what it is it’ll ruin the book for you.

I also loved the ending and the discussions had around marriage, what it means and why people get married. At the time I read this I was chatting to a friend about that very topic and in so many ways Lucy captured the very essence of what we were saying.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, next week I will be reviewing Light of the Spirit by Lisa Kessler. Continue to read further down to find out about the author and any extra giveaways available.

Author Bio

From interior designer to author, Linn B. Halton – who also writes under the pen name of Lucy Coleman – says ‘it’s been a fantastic journey!’

Linn is the bestselling author of more than a dozen novels – including Summer on the Italian Lakes, Snowflakes over Holly Cove, The French Adventure and A Cottage in the Country. She is represented by Sara Keane of the Keane Kataria Literary Agency.

When she’s not writing, or spending time with the family, she’s either upcycling furniture, working in the garden, or practising Tai Chi.

Living in Coed Duon in the Welsh Valleys with her ‘rock’, Lawrence, and gorgeous Bengal cat Ziggy, she is an eternal romantic.

Linn is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and the SoA and writes feel-good, uplifting novels about life, love and relationships.

Giveaway – Win a signed paperback of ‘A Springtime to Remember’ and a Baldwood Tote bag (open internationally)


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Shatterglass – Tamora Pierce

Welcome back everyone, there’s been a lot of contemporary romances lately so it’s good to get back to a fantasy briefly.

The last book in the quartet follows Tris as she makes her mark in a new city. In so many ways this city makes me feel ashamed that I’m human. In a world where slavery is almost gone, this city essentially lives with it as it’s entire eco-system.

Tris’s ability to see past this cities ambivalence and see the people, what they’re going through and how broken the structure is, is amazing. As a teenager reading this for the first time, I was inspired to do better, be better and fight for what’s right.

I can’t say I’m as good as Tris at this. But the inspiration is there, and I’m reminded of it every time I read this book.

Tris goes even further by taking in an orphan, giving a hurt man a new lease on life, fixing a man-made drought, showing people that different is ok and changing a whole cities way of life. How could I ever measure up to that given how much ill will there is in the world? How could I possibly find my way of making a difference like Tris does?

I honestly don’t know any other book that’s touched me in the same way that this book did and continues to touch me. I think this inspiration is something that every young person should read to get, remember and take with them through all their journeys throughout the rest of their lives.

It’s such an important message that everyone needs in their heart to remind them to be better.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, next week I will be reviewing Summer in Provence by Lucy Coleman.

Altered Carbon – In a Lonely Place (Season 01 Episode 03)

Genres: Sci-Fi
  • Episode length: 51 minutes
  • Pages read: 25
  • Chapters read: 2

The episode and the book are so different this time! Like SOOOO different!!

SPOILERS AHEAD – WON’T RUIN THE SHOW BUT WILL TELL YOU SOME THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT WANT TO KNOW BEFORE WATCHING/READING IT

SHOWBOOK
Kovacs is invited and went to dinner party at Bancroft’sNo invite was issued, and no party happened
Elliot takes Kovacs to get weaponsKovacs goes to the armourer Bancroft recommended
The knife bio-weapon goes to the tipThe knife bio-weapon is no where near the edges to ensure the owner doesn’t get poisoned
The hooker, Louise, drugs KovacsKovacs goes with them willingly and is drugged at the facility

Since there was so many differences between the two in this episode, there’s not too many similarities to look at. So let’s have a look at them.

Other than Kovacs getting weapons, seeing Louise and being kidnapped, there’s like no similarities between the book and the show. Which isn’t surprising given that this makes up all of like 10 minutes of the episode and only 25 pages.

Not much time to have anything really happen.

I’m kinda hoping that the dinner party happens later in the book so that I can see some of those bits playing out in more detail.

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Clover Cottage – Christie Barlow

Welcome back everyone, I feel like my schedule is starting to normalise a little and get under control which is awesome. Especially because today we’re returning to Love Heart Lane.

Although the blurb gives a sense that Rory and Allie will get a happily ever after with the phrase “the place that will always bring them back to each other”; for a lot of this book I didn’t think that was going to happen. I got so caught up in the emotions that they were both experiencing in the moment that I forgot this is a romance.

We know romances always end up with a happily ever after. Yet Christie’s writing had me so involved and felt so life like that I totally forgot about it! In real life happily ever after’s don’t always happen. So it made sense that maybe it wasn’t going to happen this time either.

It’s not that common that a writer can get me so involved in a romance story that I forget it’s a book and not someone’s real life. Or am I just comparing that to Married at First Sight? (Yes, I watch it coz my partner loves it and its currently mid-way through the series.)

Either way. The troubles that Rory and Allie go through are so normal. Career changes, the progression of a relationship, living situations, family issues etc. Every couple will have gone through one of more of the issues which makes it so relatable. In a way it made me feel better about the times my partner and I have disagreements (so, like every weekend?) because every couple has those moments.

I loved getting caught up in the moment and being with them as they worked out their next steps while learning more about themselves and growing as people. They each had a valuable lesson to learn and they both learnt it and moved forwards with it. It was so amazing to read.

The only thing I didn’t really like about it was that it felt like there was one thing too many that they had to work through as a couple. When I got to it, I was like “I could see the set up for this, but really? ANOTHER thing for them to figure out?” It just felt like it was a tad too much and made me drop out of the story for a moment.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review; on Friday I’ll be reviewing Shatterglass by Tamora Pierce. Continue to read further down to find out about the author.

Author Bio

Christie Barlow is the international bestselling author of A Year in the Life of a Playground Mother, The Misadventures of a Playground Mother, Kitty’s Countryside Dream, Lizzie’s Christmas Escape, Evie’s Year of Taking Chances, The Cosy Canal Boat Dream, A Home at Honeysuckle Farm, Love Heart Lane and Foxglove Farm. Her writing career came as somewhat a surprise when she decided to write a book to teach her children a valuable life lesson and show them that they are capable of achieving their dreams. The book she wrote to prove a point is now a #1 bestseller in the UK, USA, Canada & Australia.

Christie is an ambassador for @ZuriProject raising money/awareness and engaging with impoverished people in Uganda through organisations to improve their well-being.

Cold Temptation – Zoe Ashwood

Welcome back everyone, I have a bonus review for you, courtesy of Zoe Ashwood!

I’ve been looking forward to reading this since Zoe announced this world was turning into a series. And I want to lead with the fact that I’m already looking forward to the final instalment. Not that I’m sure when that’s coming out… Hopefully later this yr!

I loved the way the Mika and Kol were fighting their attraction yet fighting to be together as well. Like Cold Attraction, we come in after the initial romantic feelings begin, and get the story after that. In this case we begin at the funeral of the previous King of Rendu.

Unlike the previous book, the drama doesn’t come from external forces and the human need to know more. This time it comes purely from Mika and her desire to know more about the animals of Rendu while also proving to be incredibly unlucky.

I mean, who else falls down a glacier, goes walking in a blizzard and gets sick?

Those trails and tribulations put a lot of pressure on them and their relationship. Following both of them as they learn about the other customs, world, dangers, weaknesses, strengths and their place in each other’s lives was so enjoyable.

I know whenever I read one of Zoe’s book’s I’m in for a quick, fun, action packed romance that’s a little different to her previous books. It feels like with every book she writes she does something a little bit different.

The only thing I was really surprised about was the epilogue. The first book had the epilogue months after from Adriana’s point of view. Having this one be from Hanna’s point of view was quite a surprise. Yet it’s what’s driving my excitement about the final book. So I kinda get why Zoe decided to change her pace for the epilogue this time.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review; on Monday I’ll be reviewing Clover Cottage by Christie Barlow.

The Eternal Banquet – Jennifer Macaire

Welcome back everyone, we’re up to the last book in the series and I can’t believe I’m finally done with the series!

Those little things that frustrated me in the last book were all corrected in this book while Ashley, Alexander and Plexis found their way through the rest of their lives.

The focus of this book is on their travels home from the land of the Eaters of the Dead. There were several revelations that, for the first time in this series, made me think about something philosophical. Normally I’ve found this series to be a great relaxation read rather than a reflective and learning kind of book.

The moment that hit me was when they were leaving Carthage for Rome. If you read the book, you’ll know what I mean with that moment. I was left wondering if maybe she was always meant to travel back in time to ensure that history played out exactly as it was meant to. Maybe every time traveller that got stuck back in time had a vital role to play in the history of the world and the Institute of Time let them make changes while also keeping up the reputation of wiping them from the Earth to discourage too much control.

As much as I loved the story, the style of the writing felt a touch off at a few points. Even the last couple of chapters felt a little bit rushed. Yet I can’t see how the ending would have been satisfying any other way.

Given the difference in the whole story compared to history, I can see why we needed the wrap up of what happened to Ashley’s children and where she ended up. I’m not sure if the main reason I didn’t like this was because I didn’t want the story to end, or because there really was something missing.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, next week that last instalment of The Circle Opens quartet will be reviewed. After that, I’ll be starting a new set of series to replace this one.