Tuesday, May 11, 2010

I'm so excited! I don't know where to start!

I know...a laugh...this is from my friend Carol:
Women are angels.....
and when someone breaks our wings, 
we simply continue to fly....... on a broomstick.
We're flexible!

I did it...I bought a Kindle and I got it for my lap top as well (the later is free). There is so much I can do with it (after I read the book of instructions!)! The first thing I did was order 'The Traitor's Wife", a book I have coveted for the longest time!   

What can I tell you! I loved this book! I now want to read anything Susan Higgingtham writes! It's England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales (oh, and France) during the time of English Kings Edward I, II, III and their families. These were not gentle times (lots of lost lives and imprisonments). I read it with 2 windows open for fact checking and definitions of words for clarification.  The story is told through the eyes and ears of Edward I's granddaughter, Elenor, who's life was a roller coaster ride (along with those around her). Thank goodness for the preface of who's who (so many people with the same names). The information at the end was great too (what history says and how she filled in the 'inbetweens'). I think it is a long book (can' tell electronically) but I didn't feel it. If you like political thrillers, get it. If you like family dramas, get it. If you like adventure, get it. If you like history made live, get it. What the heck, if you like a really good read, GET IT!

If you have followed me, you know that one of my favorite new author debuts from last year was 'Circle of Souls' by Preetham Grandhi. He sent me a note that his is now an Award Wining Novelist! "A Circle of Souls" has won the Silver award for visionary fiction at the Nautilus book awards 2010. I am so excited for him! What? you haven't read the book? People, you just don't know what you are missing! READ THE BOOK!  

I have been working on my family tree via Ancestry.com for some time now. What a blast! I've found relatives who got to Texas during the years of the Republic of Texas and a first flag that I did not learn about in the Texas history classes. Two things that were really cool? Finding a) that I may  be related to the Cromwell's after reading 'Wolf Hall' and b) all the Welsh connections after reading 'The Traitor's Wife'. I found a Tory relation who may have been hung by another relative during the Revolutionary War. A husband that killed his wife and was in turn, was done in by his father-in-law.  A relative who changed his name before leaving England for the colonies as the Crown was looking for him, his brother, and father...probably to take their heads. It's nice to know my predecessors where not all goody goodies. 
The first flag of the Republic of Texas.  

The second book I bought for my Kindle (still need to read the manual) is the followup to 'The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker', 'The Darkly Luminous Fight for Persephone Parker' (just released last month) by Leanna Renee Hieber (another favorite debut author of last year). I have been resisting (so hard to do) reading it until i catch up on all my reviews. I love the covers!  If the newest is like the first, it will be gothic, with a bit of legions of London's dark past, myths, Shakespeare, paranormal activities (others may see ghosts, but she can talk to the), and other stuff for your reading enjoyment! Leanna's award: 

Have you visited Delica√© Gourmet?  I gotta tell you, she makes the bestest and tastiest products!  She can make the worst cooks look wonderful with things like the slower cooker dinner  and soup kits...she will even suggest what to add! Dump it into the crock pot, go away, and wala! dinner! You could make stuff like Country French Pork and White beans Country French Pork & White Bean or French Bistro Short Ribs French Bistro Short Ribs or even, Old Fashioned Pot Roast Old Fashioned Pot Roast.  Soups? Caribbean Black Bean  Caribbean Black Bean Soup or Country Harvest Corn Chowder  Country Harvest Corn Chowder or Southern Italian Pasta e Fragioli Southern Italian Pasta e Fagioli just to name a few.  What about some Vanilla Chia Tea Jelly Vanilla Chai Tea Jelly on your toast with your tea at breakfast or in your yogurt. Oh, you are more into coffee? How about some French Vanilla Coffee French Vanilla Coffee Jelly & Dessert Topping or Hazelnut CoffeeHazelnut Coffee Jelly & Dessert Topping or even Kona CoffeeKona Coffee Jelly & Dessert Topping Jelly & Dessert Toppings?  She has chocolate sauces and oils and vinegars and jams and jellies and marmalades and so much more! She gives you lots of suggestions but with your imagination...  I just gave you nothing more than a thumb nail sketch. Go here and read all about it yourself!  This is not a give away, just a report after she let me try some!

Winner, winner, chicken dinner...no, not food! ecostore USA winner from Valerie Mitchell's Sweeps4Bloggers!  This is really a happy win as I have tried their laundry soap and oxygen bleach (DH noticed a difference!) AND it is 'eco friendly'!  So I am excited to decide what to get this time! Go visit both sites for some really good stuff!

Hey, you who have Kindles, what accessories, if any. have you bought and why? 

Publisher's Summary:

Winner of the prestigious Man Booker prize for fiction. In the ruthless arena of King Henry VIII's court, only one man dares to gamble his life to win the king's favor and ascend to the heights of political power England in the 1520s is a heartbeat from disaster. If the king dies without a male heir, the country could be destroyed by civil war. Henry VIII wants to annul his marriage of twenty years, and marry Anne Boleyn. The pope and most of Europe opposes him. The quest for the king's freedom destroys his adviser, the brilliant Cardinal Wolsey, and leaves a power vacuum. Into this impasse steps Thomas Cromwell. Cromwell is a wholly original man, a charmer and a bully, both idealist and opportunist, astute in reading people and a demon of energy: he is also a consummate politician, hardened by his personal losses, implacable in his ambition. But Henry is volatile: one day tender, one day murderous. Cromwell helps him break the opposition, but what will be the price of his triumph? In inimitable style, Hilary Mantel presents a picture of a half-made society on the cusp of change, where individuals fight or embrace their fate with passion and courage.
With a vast array of characters, overflowing with incident, the novel re-creates an era when the personal and political are separated by a hairbreadth, where success brings unlimited power but a single failure means death.

What the Critics Say

  • National Book Critics Circle Award, Fiction, 2009
©2009 Hilary Mantel; (P)2009 Macmillan Audio
I bought this on from Audible.com.  I highly recommend this for people who have read a lot about Henry VIII or you might get lost in all the different characters. If you are familiar with this history, you will find it a good read. If not, do keep your computer on so you can search people out. I found it a kinder book on him than in other things I have read or seen. My only problem with it was it ended too soon as I know he will follow many others come to an untimely end, as did most people of that time.  BUT I found out there is another book in progress.  I am not worried that I have just spoiled the second book for you. If you know the history of the time, you already were aware of his end.  Oh, if you like listen too books, the narrator was quite good.

Have you ever been afraid of reading a book? I  think because I was told the 'banker Vaughan' mentioned was my grandfather and I would hate to see him misrepresented. But it turns out I needed have feared as it was before his time. As for my thoughts about the book? For those few people who are unacquainted with it, the novel is Mr. Haley's story of the origins and tracing of his family history. I found it a good, poignant read. Having gotten it from Audible.com, you know it was an audible version. The narrator, Avery Brooks, has an excellent voice which added much to the listen. No matter how you ingest the story, I am sure you will find it very engrossing. 

I know your eyes must be tired so I will stop for now but will soon get back to you with more reviews! Promise!


Natalie W said...

Wow! Lucky you. A Kindle and great books too. Congrats! I'm sure you'll enjoy it. I have a Sony Reader and love it but would love a Kindle some day.
I'll have to check out Delicae, the pictures look so good!

Alyce said...

Congrats on the Kindle! That is so exciting! I hadn't heard of Circle of Souls (or if I did I'd forgotten about it by now). I'll be giving it a closer look.

I love Ancestry.com! I had a subscription for a month when I was tracking down my mom's birth family. Maybe someday I'll subscribe again to do more plotting of the family tree. As far as I could tell though on either side of the family I could only trace back to around 1800 because the census forms didn't list as many details prior to that. I managed to trace one side of the family to a town that is actually named after my ancestor's surname - that was pretty cool! It sounds like your family has a interesting history. :)

Susan Higginbotham said...

Glad you enjoyed The Traitor's Wife, and thanks for the review!


Susan Higginbotham enjoyed it? i loved it!