Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Can't Wait Wednesday No. 73: A Question of Holmes, by Brittany Cavallaro

Welcome to "Can't Wait Wednesday"!

This is a weekly event hosted by
Tressa @ Wishful Endings!
This is also where we excited book bloggers showcase future releases we're eagerly anticipating! 
For more information, 
please click HERE.

There's also a Linky widget, so participating blogs can link up!

Here's my choice for this week!

 A Question of Holmes
(Charlotte Holmes, Book 4)
Brittany Cavallaro
Hardcover, 320 pages
Katherine Tegen Books
     March 5, 2019
Classics Retellings, Contemporary Fiction, 
Young Adult Fiction 

The fourth book in the New York Times bestselling Charlotte Holmes series! 

Charlotte Holmes and Jamie Watson think they’re finally in the clear. They’ve left Sherringford School—and the Moriartys—behind for a pre-college summer program at Oxford University. A chance to start from scratch and explore dating for the first time, while exploring a new city with all the freedom their program provides. But when they arrive, Charlotte is immediately drawn into a new case: a series of accidents have been befalling the members of the community theater troupe in Oxford, and now, on the eve of their production of Hamlet, they’re starting all over again. What once seemed like a comedy of errors is now a race to prevent the next tragedy—before Charlotte or Jamie is the next victim. 

 Why I can't wait for this one!

Okay, so THIS time, I HAVE read the first book in this bestselling series, and the second, as well, although I didn't finish the second one. I do plan to give it a second chance, though, because I think the whole concept is a TERRIFIC one! I mean, the female descendant of the great detective, and the male descendant of his famous sidekick? LOVE IT!! Of course, this adds the possibility of some romance, which I totally dig. Interestingly, Cavallaro brings in some family dynamics, as well. So on to the third book! (Before I start on it, though, I will be SURE to give the second book that second chance, and then read the third one.)

The previous books in this series! Click on the covers for my reviews of the first two, and for the GR page of the third.

Brittany Cavallaro is a poet, fiction writer, and old school Sherlockian. She is the author of the Charlotte Holmes novels from HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen Books, including A Study in Charlotte and The Last of August. She's also the author of the poetry collection Girl-King (University of Akron) and is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship. She earned her BA in literature from Middlebury College, and her MFA in poetry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Currently, she's a PhD candidate in English literature at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She lives in Wisconsin with her husband, cat, and collection of deerstalker caps.

What do you think of my
choice this week? 
Please leave a comment and
let me know!

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Shelf Candy Saturday No. 257: The Muse, by Jessie Burton

Welcome to Shelf Candy Saturday!

*Late Edition*
This is my weekly feature
showcasing beautiful covers!
It also provides information, 
if available, on their 
very talented creators!

Here's my choice for this week!

The Muse
Jessie Burton
Hardcover, 416  pages
July 26, 2016
Art, Historical Fiction, Mystery

My Thoughts About This Cover

This is a rather whimsical, yet visually stunning cover that instantly caught my eye when I first found it, during a Google search.

I love the symmetrical design, the dark background, the splashes of bright colors, and the way the snakes intertwine with the leafy branches. I also love the main color, which is a very bright blue-green. 

It's interesting how the two pistols at the top of the cover mimic the intertwining action of the snakes at the bottom. Or is is the other way around? 

There's all this movement, so, in spite of the design's symmetry, the viewer never gets bored while staring at this cover! That's because, even within the symmetry, there's movement that counters movement, in opposite directions. For instance, the two pistols are pointing outward, while the snakes, as well as the paint brushes above them, are pointing inward, toward the title. The leafy branches behind the paint brushes, though, point outward, like the pistols. All this creates a LOT of visual interest! 

The title uses a font inspired by the Art Deco style, although a bit more ornamental, and yes, whimsical, too. The author's name is done in a plainer, more understated font, and is gray, while the title font is white.

One small, but VERY important detail is that this cover doesn't have a lot of "cover chatter", which is additional information that is frequently placed on book covers and, more often than not, end up ruining the entire design. On this cover, this "chatter" has been kept to a minimum, and has been placed at the very top of the over, where it's clearly visible, yet does not intrude on the overall design. Kudos to the artist for that, as this is a pet peeve of mine regarding book covers!

This artist's love of typography is more than evident, not only on this cover, but on other covers she's illustrated, such as the ones for Wink Poppy Midnight, by April Genevieve Tucholke, Wicked Like a Wildfire, by Lana Popović, and The Wicked Deep, by Shea Ernshaw. 

At first sight, this looks like a fantasy cover, and that's part of what drew me in, as well. Upon looking closer, the viewer notices the two pistols and the old-fashioned typewriter. Hardly fantasy elements! But again, the whole style of the cover would lead one to believe that this is, indeed a fantasy novel. 

The artist responsible for this GORGEOUS cover is Lisa Perrin, an award-winning illustrator who wears several hats: illustrator, designer, collaborator, entrepreneur, and educator. 

She earned her MFA in Illustration Practice from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2013, and is based in Cleveland, Ohio (USA). Although she's currently working for American Greetings card company, her clients include Macy's, Penguin Random House, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Scholastic, The Saturday Evening Post,, and many others. 

Her work has been recognized by The Society of Illustrators, American Illustration, 3X3 Magazine, and Print Magazine.

Online Links

What do you think of 
this week's cover?
Please leave a comment
and let me know!

Friday, August 10, 2018

Book Blogger Hop No. 138: Happiness is sitting down with a good book!!

Welcome to the Book Blogger Hop,
hosted by Billy @

For more information, and 
to find out the topic of next week's question, click HERE.

This Week's Question

Can you say this about yourself: "Nothing makes me happier than sitting down with a good book"?

(Submitted  by Elizabeth @

My Answer

Here's the short and sweet answer: Absolutely. Positively. Without the shadow of a doubt!

You didn't think I would stop there, did you? Lol. Of course not! Because I love to write about the lovely effect that a good book has on me! Of course, what I consider "a good book" might not be what other bookworms consider a good book. And we also have the two main classifications of books to take into account: fiction and nonfiction. Each one obviously encompasses different criteria for "book goodness".

In the case of both fiction and nonfiction, genres have to be mentioned, as well. In my own case, I tend to prefer novels that contain elements of fantasy in them. So I love to read the following genres: fantasy, science fiction, paranormal romance, and urban fantasy. I also read historical romances, and, occasionally, even romances with an element of suspense. However, I will always prefer to read novels that take me out of the mundane reality that surrounds me every day. I love to be immersed -- by a skillful author, of course -- in books that will transport me to worlds and "realities" that are highly improbable in the here and now. Such books will totally absorb me, to the point that I will emerge into what everyone knows as "the real world", several hours later, wondering where the heck the time went! 

I am not interested in the following fiction genres: horror, thrillers, or crime fiction. As for women's fiction, or what is otherwise known as "chick lit", it depends. I might read such books from time to time, but I will ALWAYS prefer books that have those fantasy elements.

As for nonfiction, I find there's a similar effect, if the subject matter of the book is interesting to me.

Nonfiction books dealing with the following subjects are DEFINITELY my cup of tea: esoteric topics (to a degree), psychology, philosophy, and theology. In regards to these subjects, I have no problem reading practical books (such as self-help psychology books), as well as more academic ones.

I am also interested in art, so a book on acrylic painting techniques will definitely make me lose several hours! So will a book on the life of a famous artist, or a specific period in Art History, such as the Renaissance. As for crafts, I might get absorbed by a book on beadwork, for instance. 

In short, any book, whether fiction or nonfiction, that takes me out of the ordinary, that opens up new horizons, that stimulates me to think about things in a different way, or that will allow me to suspend disbelief while involving me in magical adventures, will count as "a good book". And yes, I feel totally blissful when reading such a book! 

What are your thoughts on
this topic?
If you're participating in this hop,
I'll go comment on your 
own BBH post.
If not, I will then comment on one 
of your blog posts!
Thanks for visiting!!!  

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Can't Wait Wednesday No. 72: Dragon's Code, by Gigi McCAffrey

Welcome to "Can't Wait Wednesday"!

This is a weekly event hosted by
Tressa @ Wishful Endings!
This is also where we excited book bloggers showcase future releases we're eagerly anticipating! 
For more information, 
please click HERE.

There's also a Linky widget, so participating blogs can link up!

Here's my choice for this week!

 Dragon's Code:
Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders
of Pern
Gigi McCAffrey
Hardcover, 272 pages
Del Rey Books
     October 2, 2018        
Fantasy, Science Fiction

A new hero emerges in a divided world as one of sci-fi's most beloved series--Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern--relaunches with this original adventure from Anne's daughter, Gigi McCaffrey.

In honor of the fiftieth anniversary of the Dragonriders of Pern series, Gigi does her mother proud, adding to the family tradition of spinning unputdownable tales that recount the adventures of the brave inhabitants of a distant planet who battle the pitiless adversary known as Thread.

The last time Thread attacked Pern, the world was unprepared for the fight--until the Oldtimers appeared. These courageous dragonriders arrived from the past, traveling four hundred years to help their descendants survive. But the collision of past and present took its toll. While most of the displaced rescuers adapted to their new reality, others could not abide the jarring change and found themselves in soul-crushing exile, where unhappiness and resentment seethed.

Piemur, a journeyman harper, also feels displaced, cast adrift by the loss of his spectacular boyhood voice and uncertain of his future. But when the Masterharper of Pern sees promise in the young man and sends him undercover among the exiled Oldtimers, Piemur senses the looming catastrophe that threatens the balance of power between the Weyrs and Holds of Pern.

When the unthinkable happens, Piemur must rise to the challenge to avert disaster and restore honor to the dragons and dragonriders of Pern. Because now, in a world already beset by Thread, another, more insidious danger looms: For the first time in living memory, dragons may be on the verge of fighting dragons.

 Why I can't wait for this one!

OMG.....Anne McCaffrey's daughter is continuing The Dragonriders of Pern series?! WOWZA!!! Okay, so NOW I DO have to get on the bandwagon and read the first book in McCaffrey Senior's famous series!! Yeah, this is getting to be some sort of habit with me....picking out books in a series I want to read, when I haven't even read the FIRST And this one is by the daughter of the original writer, too! How did THIS happen???? Well, I have the first book in my personal library. In fact, I've owned it for YEARS. I gotta stop for a minute here, and just.....BAWL.  :(

Gigi McCaffrey collaborated with her late mother, Anne McCaffrey, on three short stories collected in the anthologies Great Writers & Kids Write Spooky Stories and Mothers and Daughters. She also contributed an essay to Dragonwriter: A Tribute to Anne McCaffrey and Pern, edited by her brother Todd McCaffrey. She lives in the Devil's Glen, in the garden county of Ireland, with her husband, their son, and the infamous hound, Sidney.

Fantastic Fiction/Goodreads

What do you think of my
choice this week? 
Please leave a comment and
let me know!