March Book Reviews

Slightly late posting these as I was away at the end of the month but here it is, my round-up of everything I’ve read in the lovely month of March!

First up,

A Secret History of Witches by Louisa Morgan

Blurb:

“‘It’s true, ma petite. If they know – if they discover what we are – they will try to kill us’

Brittany, 1821. After Grand-mere Ursule gives her life to save her family, their magic seems to die with her. Even so, the Orchieres fight to keep the old ways alive, practising half-remembered spells and arcane rites in hopes of a revival. And when their youngest daughter comes of age, magic flows anew. The lineage continues, though new generations struggle not only to master their power, but also to keep it hidden.

But when World War II looms on the horizon, magic is needed more urgently than ever – not for simple potions or visions, but to change the entire course of history.

A Secret History of Witches is a moving historical saga that traces five generations of fiercely powerful mothers and daughters – witches whose magical inheritance is both a dangerous threat and an extraordinary gift.”

Loved this book! It’s beautifully written and every character through each generation is so well fleshed out that they each felt real to me. The characters are strong, flawed and at times very frustrating but all unique. I found some of the Orchierre women’s stories more gripping than others and have to admit I found the Queen Elizabeth/ War scenario a little bit far fetched but it’s so lushly written that I can forgive it. A heart-breaking and bitter sweet read.

Four stars ****

Next,

Time’s Convert by Deborah Harkness

Blurb: Continue reading “March Book Reviews”

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February Book Reviews

Been a little bit slower on my reading this month as there’s been quite a lot going on and I’ve really been pushing to finish my latest draft of The Cauldron Born so only two finished reads this month.

First up, Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s Good Omen’s:

I really enjoyed this book, it’s a lot of fun and a really interesting, original concept. I loved the quirky characters and it’s beautifully written. There are some very funny moments and one liners that had me chuckling to myself. The only thing I would say is that it’s a little bit slow in places and I found myself losing interest a bit towards the end but overall, definitely recommend it! Very much looking forward to Prime Video version, the cast looks amazing.

My other read this month was V.E Schwab’s A Gathering of Shadows, the sequel to A Darker Shade of Magic:

This was another very enjoyable read, as evidenced by the fact that I devoured all 500 pages of it in about 3 days. I think I actually liked it even more than the first instalment. V.E Schwab weaves a beautiful, lush and believable world that is very easy to sink into and get immersed in. I loved Lila’s adventures on the pirate…ahem..sorry…privateer ship and found a new favourite character in Alucard Emery. Not ashamed to admit that I kinda shipped him and Lila for a minute there. Lilalucard? He was a fun, interesting character and I found I wanted more of his scenes. I was a little disappointed that he wasn’t actually a vampire. I mean, c’mon, his name is Alucard.
Anyhoo, there were a few niggly annoying things about this book. The main one for me being the use of the “not like other girls” trope with Lila which seemed to be emphasised a lot more heavily in this one than the first. It just seemed like the author should kinda know better, particularly in a book with so many cool and powerful female competitors in the tournament who are barely brushed on. Kisimyr, anyone? But no, all girls like dresses and Lila is one of a kind because she prefers knives. K.
I also found some of the whining from Kel and Rhy a little bit tiresome in places. I totally get why they’re struggling. They’ve been through some major trauma. I just feel like we labour over it too much after it has already been made clear.
Overall though, it is superbly written and I found it very hard to put down.

So that’s my quick round-up of February reads. Up next I’m reading A Secret History of Witches by Louisa Morgan.

Bank Holiday Fun!

I’ve been taking a little time off writing and blogging over the last few days to enjoy a much needed break and spend some time with friends and family. It’s been a glorious bank holiday weekend here in the U.K and the weather has been incredible. I spent Saturday with my boyfriend and a friend playing frisbee and basketball at the park and then had some lunch at our favourite Italian restaurant by the river. It’s called Biondi and it’s our go-to place as soon as the weather gets nice. We went to the garden centre on the way back as I wanted to pick up some flowers for the garden.

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It’s our second year growing our own vegetables and it has been a bit of a challenge so far. We’ve had such a late spring here and we lost a lot of our first round of crops to the cold weather. But as the weather has been picking up so too have our plants. This year we are growing courgettes, tomatoes, beetroot, chillis, peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, strawberries, raspberries and a load of different herbs and salad leaves.

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I spent the afternoon on Saturday planting in the new flowers and re-potting some of the vegetables, as well as having a general garden clean up. Things are finally taking shape out there and the little splash of colour that the flowers bring really makes a difference. I’ve been doing a little more today, re-potting courgettes into their final big pots and potting on some of the beetroots. It’s hard work sometimes but I enjoy any excuse to spend time outdoors and be amongst nature. Plus, gardening can be very therapeutic as it allows your mind time to wander.

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On the Sunday I went to a family BBQ at my aunts and enjoyed some quality time with my mums side of the family. It’s always lovely to catch up with everyone, particularly as the family doesn’t get together as often any more now all us kids are grown up and have flown the nest! It’s important to spend time with the people who know you well and reconnect with your roots.

On Monday we had yet another BBQ, this time with my boyfriends family. It was a much smaller and more low key affair so it enabled me to relax a little more. I’ve still been ill over the past five days and unfortunately I haven’t been resting and taking care of myself as much as I should have since we’ve been so busy. Now that I’m back at work and into a normal routine hopefully I’ll be able to recover properly.

It’s been good to take a break from the writing but I’m looking forward to getting stuck back in and getting the final chapter finished so I can start the editing process. I’m going to try and get at least a bit of writing done before I start work later this afternoon.

Hope everyone has had a wonderful, relaxing bank holiday weekend!

Witchcraft and Mythology Books

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I’ve been slowly building up my collection of books on witchcraft and mythology, namely as research for my book but also out of personal interest. These are just a few that I keep by my desk for inspiration, along with their witchy guardian of course! I’ve been thinking I might start blogging a few reviews of some of these and perhaps a few others. There are so many witchcraft books out there these days so perhaps some may find it useful. Plus I have a wish list as long as my arm of others that I can’t wait to buy and read! Let me know in the comments if you have any favourites / recommendations. 🙂