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Sunday, 20 September 2020

THE CASE OF THE MISSING MARQUESS by Nancy Springer

The Case of the Missing Marquess (Enola Holmes, #1)The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

As soon as I found out about the Enola Holmes movie coming to Netflix, I was interested in checking it out. So, when I found out it's based on a book series I started looking into it.

Imagine my surprise when hubby showed me the cover of the first book and I realised I actually have a copy. I mean, how could I forget this lovely cover? And that it's one of the many books we found during our pre-pandemic thrifting adventures! 👀

I was so excited I read it right away.

Enola Holmes lives with her mother in Ferndell Hall and enjoys a relaxed life of learning, mischief and personal adventure. On her 14th birthday, her mother disappears and she becomes obsessed with finding her.

But when her much older brothers, Mycroft and Sherlock Holmes come to the estate to investigate, they're appalled by what they find and take over. Following their overreactions and threats, Enola heads out on a journey to London to search for her mother. Along the way she gets caught up in a kidnapping and so much more...

OMG. I loved this! It was SO much fun.

I love a good mystery set during any time period, but there's something that always grabs me about a good Victorian mystery. Maybe it's because girls and women weren't valued for their intelligence and these stories focus on that fact so well. 😊

Either way, this story is fast-paced, intriguing and packed full of interesting characters. Enola was such a great heroine! She didn't let her brothers stop her from following her instincts, and didn't care about their contempt for their mother. Actually, it pushes her to start her own investigation and along the way, finds her place in the world.

Enola is an awesome young lady. And no matter how silly or wild her brothers claim she is, it works to her advantage. Which is awesome because Mycroft and Sherlock are super annoying, so it's great to see her outsmart them.

The mystery of the missing Eudoria Holmes was enhanced by Enola's memories of everything her mother taught her. As well as the ciphers she taught her how to solve. I liked the ending because on the surface seems so simple, but made so much sense. And fit so well with the overall message in the narrative.

Now I can't wait to watch the movie and get my hands on the next book... 

Saturday, 19 September 2020

THE SOUTHERN BOOK CLUB'S GUIDE TO SLAYING VAMPIRES by Grady Hendrix

The Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying VampiresThe Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I've been looking forward to reading this book for AGES! I've enjoyed the hell out of every Grady Hendrix book I've read, so I was very excited about this one too.

Patricia is a busy housewife with kids who have no time for her and an arrogant husband who only cares about his job. They don't respect her or anything she does. At least she has her book club. Where she reads a bunch of interesting true-crime books and spends time with a group of fellow housewives.

When a new person moves into their quiet neighbourhood, she's determined to help him fit in. Yet, soon starts suspecting he's not what he seems...

WOW! I had such a blast with this book. It's amazing. LOVED IT!

As soon as I started reading, I was hooked. The deeper I got into the story, the more I struggled to put it down.

Patricia is a great character. She tries so hard to be a good person and helps whenever she can, but everyone treats her like she's a crazy moron. No one cares about what she's going through or how much crap is piled on her. They don't know how strong she is, or how brave. So, before she knows what's going on, she finds her life spiralling out of control. I felt so bad when everyone turns on her because she didn't deserve that kind of treatment.

Now, let's talk about the husbands. They were such weak, pathetic fools and pissed me off so much I wanted to slap some sense into them. I hated the flippant way they treated their wives. And how they refused to listen because they were so consumed by their toxic masculinity they were easily being manipulated and didn't even realise it. 😒

I've mentioned this before about this author and I have to say it again: he really gets the many struggles of girls and women. He writes these characters so well, and treats women like the real people they are, that their plights are often very familiar.

Like all his other books, the combination of humour, nostalgia, tension and gore is outstanding. Grady Hendrix sure knows how to set a creepy scene to tell an intriguing and interesting story. That's also unpredictable. I couldn't wait to find out what other dark surprises were waiting within these very pretty pages and didn't expect any of the twists and turns along the way.

I loved the mounting tension, every page was SO intense. And enjoyed how the story went to some pretty terrifying places and didn't shy away from the disturbing. I seriously couldn't read fast enough.

Also, not only was this a great book to read, the actual physical copy is lovely.

This turned out to be such an original vampire story. Can't wait to see what monster Hendrix tackles next. 

Tuesday, 15 September 2020

Finishing Time!

Hey! It's me again. How are ya? What's new? How's this week going for ya?

You know, every single time I ask that during 2020, I can't help feeling weird. I mean, how great can things be during a global pandemic that won't let up and greedy/selfish people keep pretending it's over? Yeah. I know.

Still, there are things we can do to stay positive. And safe. Like, staying away from other people. LOL.

Personally, hubby and I have spent a lot of this year doing stuff we love to do, like spending time with each other. As well as catching up on shows and movies. I've also been writing a lot, reading even more. Hubby's finally getting the chance to play a bunch of the games he's been meaning to get to for years.

And that leads into this week's writing progress:
  • Monday: 35,184 (added 5060w)
  • Tuesday: 37,681 (added 2497w)

Yep. That's right. I finished the first draft of what turned out to be a novella. I'm very excited about reaching The End of this WIP, and even happier about how this story turned out.

This is actually a story that came to me a few months ago in a dream. I remember waking up with such vivid imagery about a disturbing scene featuring a very wicked house that I had to write everything down right away. The dream was so sharp that I can still see it in my head very clearly.

Funny thing is that this inspirational imagery was actually the ending of the story. This is the second time this year that the ending was the first thing to spark my imagination. 

It might sound strange, but hey, every idea/story is different.

Now that this is done, I'm taking the rest of the week off and probably next week as well. Both to get some distance from it, and because writing this novella was a nine-day writing frenzy. 😬💻

I'm hoping to squeeze in a bit of reading, too. Only problem is figuring out which of the many books I can't wait to read should be next...

Anyway, hope you all have a lovely week.

See ya!


Sunday, 13 September 2020

Writing time!

How are you? Hope you're all well and still surviving this never-ending ordeal known as a global pandemic.

I realise that some people like to pretend it's over and are very vocal about it, but it's not. And those of us who care about others and ourselves, are actually doing our bit to stay safe.

Yeah, after all these months I still sound like a broken record. 😒

Well, I haven't popped in for a few weeks because I took a nice break with hubby. We watched a LOT of movies and I read several long books. It was so much fun!

But this week, it was time to get stuck into the story that's been hounding my brain for quite a while. I just couldn't ignore it any longer.

Here's how my word count went:
  • Monday: 4,732 
  • Tuesday: 10,152 (added 5420w)
  • Wednesday: 13,449 (added 3297w)
  • Thursday: 19,537 (added (6088w)
  • Friday: 23,614 (added 4077w)
  • Saturday: 27,041w (added 3427)w)
  • Sunday: 30,124w (added 3083w)

I'm very excited about making this much progress during the week I decided to really get stuck into it. I guess that's what happens when an idea is this ready to be told.

You know, when I first started writing this story, I thought it might turn out to be a 15k-word novelette. But it's obviously going to end up being longer than that.

We're in novella territory now. But I don't mind. I'll keep writing until I reach the end of this draft.

I'm having a lot of fun with this gothic horror story featuring monsters from mythology. It's dark and creepy, is set in a nightmarish house and has several heartbreaking scenes that are hard to write. And will only get harder because I know how this is going to end, and it's not heading to a happy place.

Unfortunately, the side effects of getting SO caught up in my own story means I didn't read anything new during the week. But that's okay. At the moment, it's all about this story.

Oh, and one last thing: THIS very awesome thing happened! I'm so excited about my shortie making the cut at Crystal Lake Publishing flash fiction challenge.

Well, that's it for this week's update. Just wanted to post a little update. 😊

Have a great day!


Thursday, 10 September 2020

My story has been posted!


My short story, Into the Fire, is a finalist in Crystal Lake Publishing's latest Flash Fiction Contest:


Here's the tagline:

When the world falls apart, everything breaks... especially your heart. 💔😷🔥

Voting will open soon at Crystal Lake Publishing for their patreons. 

You can read my story HERE.

It's very exciting! 😁

 
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