Shadow Gate by Kate Elliott (Book Two of the Crossroads)

Synopsis: The Hundred swirls with intrigue, magic, and war as long-gone Guardians awaken and the eagle-riding reeves join with fierce outlanders to make war against a sorcerous foe, while an avenging demon casts new light on the accepted practice of slavery. Review: Shadow Gate was a good second book. It told an exciting, thrilling story while laying the groundwork for a big conclusion. Not much more to say until I read the finale, up next. Share on Facebook

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The Write Start: A Guide to Nurturing Writing at Every Stage, from Scribbling to Forming Letters and Writing Stories by Jennifer Hallissy

Synopsis: A guide for parents to teach their children how to write, from scribbles to stories. Review: I plan on homeschooling the Superfast girls so I’m always keen to read these kinds of books. I found The Write Start to be engaging, informative, and useful. I have started using some of her techniques, like “boss hand” and “helper hand” with Superfast Preschooler, and she’s responded really well. Hallissy makes teaching writing sound fun and achievable by ordinary parents. Share on Facebook

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This Glittering World by T. Greenwood

Synopsis: After the body of a badly beaten Navajo man is discovered in the snow outside his home, Ben Bailey takes the investigation into his own hands, with devastating consequences for his own disordered life. Review: With every book of hers I read, I become convinced that T. Greenwood is my favorite contemporary author. This Glittering World is one of her best yet, achieving the same level of intensity and feeling as her second novel (and my favorite) Nearer than the Sky. Protagonist Ben Bailey’s…

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Spirit Gate by Kate Elliott (Crossroads, Book 1)

Synopsis: A democracy known for peaceful governance by reeves riding giant eagles falls into chaos and possible civil war when the reeves of the north stop responding and a military captain fleeing his murderous brother lands right in the middle of it; meanwhile, a slave sells an eerie, ghost-like girl into prostitution in order to free his sister, who, as a temple prostitute called a Devouring girl, has a few tricks up her sleeve as well as a personal stake in the larger story. Review:…

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Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King

Synopsis: 4 new stories that probe what ordinary people might do when faced with evil. Review: There were times when I considered putting down Full Dark, No Stars because it went so deep into the blackness. I know that sounds odd, because of who the author is, but for some reason these stories felt compressed in an unpleasant way. When King takes more time to develop his stories and let them breathe, you get some relief from the evil. That’s not the case with these…

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Game of Thrones by George RR Martin (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1)

Synopsis: Political powers battle for control of the Iron Throne, while to the north supernatural powers threaten, and in the south a dispossessed royal begins to raise an army. Review: I wanted to reread Game of Thrones before the HBO series launches in April, and decided I’d give the audiobook a try. I am so glad I did. The narrator, Roy Dotrice, not only has a magnificent voice but sets all of the characters apart from each other. He’s just amazing. As for the story,…

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The House at Riverton by Kate Morton

Synopsis: As she dies, a former lady’s maid reflects on the scandal that ended the family she served and reveals the truth that only she knew. Review: Kate Morton is rapidly becoming my latest favorite author. With her thrilling blend of Gothic melodrama and intricate plotting, she hits all my favorite buttons, much like her self-proclaimed influences Daphne DuMaurier and Barbara Vine. In The House at Riverton, Morton presents Grace, a lady’s maid who spent her youth in service with a titled family haunted by…

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