Tag: fiction

Waiting on Wednesday for The Lake House by Kate Morton

Waiting on Wednesday for The Lake House by Kate MortonThe Lake House by Kate Morton
Published by Atria Books on October 22nd 2015
Genres: Adult, Fiction, Historical
Goodreads

The beguiling new novel from Kate Morton; the number one bestselling author of The House at Riverton and The Secret Keeper. An abandoned house... After a particularly troubling case, Sadie Sparrow is sent on an enforced break from her job with the Metropolitan Police and retreats to her beloved grandfather's cottage in Cornwall. There she finds herself at a loose end, until one day she stumbles upon an abandoned house surrounded by overgrown gardens and dense woods, and learns the story of a baby boy who disappeared without a trace. A missing child... June 1933, and the Edevane family's country house, Loeanneth, is polished and gleaming, ready for the much-anticipated Midsummer Eve party. For Eleanor, the annual party has always been one of her treasured traditions, but her middle daughter, Alice, sixteen years old and with literary ambitions, is especially excited. Not only has Alice worked out the perfect twist for her novel, she's also fallen helplessly in love with someone she shouldn't. But by the time midnight strikes and fireworks light up the night sky, the Edevane family will have suffered a loss so great they leave Loeanneth and never return. An unsolved mystery... Seventy years later, in the attic writing room of her elegant Hampstead home, the formidable Alice Edevane leads a life as neatly plotted as the bestselling detective novels she writes. Until a young police detective starts asking questions about her family's past and seeking to resurrect the complex tangle of secrets Alice has spent her life trying to escape...

Cornwall. A Detective Novelist. An Unsolved Mystery. A Romance.

Need I say more? These are just a few of the elements purported to be in the upcoming Kate Morton novel!! Yes, that’s right–I did say KATE MORTON!

Do I have any The House at Riverton fans?? The Distant Hours? The Secret Keeper?

You can bet that when fellow Kate Morton friends, including Lindsey, Alyssa, Morgan, Laura, and Jess, and I found out about the new Kate Morton and saw its cover, we freaked out just a bit.

group dance

You guys. This is big. Kate Morton has a new book coming out in October!!! And it’s called The Lake House!!

yes am excited

The first time I encountered Kate Morton was through a paperback copy of The House at Riverton I picked up at Target before going on vacation. Wow–was that a lucky pick! I discovered that I adored Kate Morton’s style, and was soon buying all subsequent titles that she wrote. She’s Australian but many of her books are set in England, one of my favorite places in the world!

I get swept up in her books–I love the DRAMA, THE ROMANCE, THE SECRETS, THE MYSTERY, THE ENGLISH LANDSCAPES. I LOVE IT ALL!

And don’t you think Atria designs the most gorgeous covers for Morton’s books?

Just look at them!

the house at riverton distant hours secret keeper

What are you waiting on Wednesday for this week? If you’re not a Kate Morton fan, do you think you might pick up one of her books? Which one?

Did I tell you I was excited about the new Kate Morton book?!?!?

excited 2

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, in which we share those upcoming releases we are most excited about!

What Katie Read

ARC Review & Giveaway: Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke (2015) by Anne Blankman

ARC Review & Giveaway: Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke (2015) by Anne BlankmanConspiracy of Blood and Smoke by Anne Blankman
Published by Harper Collins on April 21st 2015
Genres: Death & Dying, Europe, Historical Fiction, Holocaust, People & Places, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 416
Goodreads
five-stars

Acclaimed author Anne Blankman returns to the shadowy and dangerous world of 1930s Germany in this thrilling sequel to Prisoner of Night and Fog, perfect for fans of Code Name Verity.The girl known as Gretchen Whitestone has a secret: She used to be part of Adolf Hitler's inner circle. More than a year after she made an enemy of her old family friend and fled Munich, she lives in England, posing as an ordinary German immigrant, and is preparing to graduate from high school. Her love, Daniel, is a reporter in town. For the first time in her life, Gretchen is content.But then Daniel gets a telegram that sends him back to Germany, and Gretchen's world turns upside down. When she receives word that Daniel is wanted for murder, she has to face the danger she thought she'd escaped—and return to her homeland. Gretchen must do everything she can to avoid capture, even though saving Daniel will mean consorting with her former friends, the Nazi elite. And as they work to clear Daniel's name, Gretchen and Daniel discover a deadly conspiracy stretching from the slums of Berlin to the Reichstag itself. Can they dig up the explosive truth and get out in time—or will Hitler discover them first?

“Life is so short and so precious, and I don’t want to waste another second of it wondering how you feel about me or what’s going to become of us. I love you. If anything happened to you, the world would stop for me. I would want it to stop because I can’t go on without you.” (259-260)

What I Loved:

The History: Like Prisoner, Blankman researched A LOT for this sequel set in 1933. One thing I love about historical fiction is the history lesson that the reader receives while reading the book. This story was no exception, and though I read a lot of WWII-era books, this story is unique in that it is set in the 30s and is told from the perspective of a German who grew up in Hitler’s inner circle. That alone provides a fascinating dimension to the story, and I knew almost nothing about the real-life murder/conspiracy that Hitler’s thugs were involved with in Munich. The fact that I learned so much more about Hitler and this mysterious fire that actually happened drew me further into the book.

You don’t want to miss Blankman’s imagining of this “conspiracy” from Gretchen and Daniel’s perspectives. I also really enjoyed the inclusion of Winston Churchill in the story. This was a welcome addition to the narrative that solidified the fact that many individuals leading up to the war and during it, chose to take a stand for justice, even in the face of danger and death. Many of these individuals were honored for their roles (and books like this one as well as Code Name Verity have led me to acquire some nonfiction titles about those who played a role in the resistance during the war).

I loved that Blankman included an extensive afterword and shared info about what was real and what wasn’t. Extensive biographies in the back of books are my friends! I get very excited when I see these biographies. In my ARC, the biography begins on page 402 and continues to page 405.

Gretchen’s Bravery: German in the 1930s is a scary place for certain groups of people, especially someone that has defied Hitler and shared information about him that he never wanted revealed. That’s Gretchen Whitestone for you! Does that keep her from returning to German to follow he one she loves? Of course not! Gretchen’s bravery is revealed again and again in the story, and though I loved her as a character in Prisoner, that sentiment was only strengthened in the sequel.

I also appreciated watching Gretchen’s further working through of the tension between what she grew up hearing from Hitler about the Jews and Communists and what she thinks as an older and more experienced young woman.

Gretchen & Daniel: I appreciated the deeper glimpse into Daniel and Gretchen’s relationship—including its complexities and challenges. Things don’t always go well for them, and they have their ups and downs, like any relationship. However, they are brave enough to work through them, and as I mentioned earlier, Gretchen and Daniel will both go to great lengths for each other.

The Suspense: Just like Prisoner, Conspiracy featured several nail biting moments of suspense! This is one aspect of the book that kept me reading—there are definitely some moments in the book when you wonder, are these characters going to make it out of this? Though some readers might think it’s a little too providential that certain characters are saved, etc., the fact is that these kinds of providential situations did occur before, during, and after the war!

Who Should Read This Book:

If you read Prisoner of Night and Fog, you must make sure you’re in line to read the sequel. You won’t want to miss a moment of Gretchen and Daniels’ journey. By the end of Prisoner of Night and Fog, you assume everything will be fine—Gretchen and Daniel are together, and life can go on. But, you quickly realize that not all is as it should be in the beginning of Conspiracy, and once you start reading the book, be warned. You might not put it down until you discover how this new predicament of Gretchen and Daniel will work itself out.

Blankman provides flashbacks to remind readers of the first book, but I strongly recommend you read Prisoner first.

You know that I’m a great fan of historical fiction, especially Middle Grade, YA, and Adult fiction set during WWII. This is one of my new favorite YA series, and you’ll remember in my review of Prisoner of Night and Fog, that I read the first book in one afternoon for Dewey’s 24 Hour Read-a-thon. I remember being so excited about the release of Prisoner, so when I finally had my hands on a copy, I wanted to dive right in. Needless to say, Prisoner of Night and Fog was one of my favorite YA releases last year, and one of my favorite debuts.

When Danielle at Love at First Page offered to loan me her ARC, I was beyond excited and thankful! Later on, I received my own ARC of the book, which I so appreciated as this will be one I hang onto for a long time (Thank you, Heather Doss, of Harper!).

A Spiritual Illumination:

A clear desire for justice burns within Daniel—he makes it clear from the beginning of the book that he is willing to do almost anything to see justice win. Gretchen’s compassion and love for him also drives her to help him with this task of exonerating himself. To me, this was a clear spiritual aspect of the book—the desire for justice that is reflected in both Daniel and Gretchen. But also, there’s this idea of making sacrifices for love, and this is another spiritual aspect that stuck out to me in the book.

I loved the sequel to Prisoner of Night and Fog! What about you? Have you read it or are you planning to read it?

If you don’t have it yet, you can enter my giveaway to win a copy (US Only)!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

five-stars
What Katie Read

Top Ten Books on My Spring TBR

What Ten Books are at the top of your Spring TBR for 2015?

I have to admit, this is a bit of a difficult one because there are a lot of books on my Spring TBR I’m excited about. I’ll TRY to narrow it down to ten, but realize I could list many more than these!

As usual, this weekly meme is hosted by The Broke and Bookish. Be sure to link up each week so we can visit your Top Ten!

An Ember in the Ashes

ember

I’m so excited about this upcoming debut—I just can’t wait until it’s out. It definitely sounds like my kind of book–an epic fantasy set in a Rome-like world!

The Kiss of Deception

kiss of deception

I have had The Kiss of Deception for awhile and I haven’t read it yet! Life and my overflowing TBR had made it difficult to get to all the books, so this one is coming up soon!

The Glass Sentence

the glass sentence

My parents gave me this one for Christmas and I still haven’t gotten to it—it’s sitting in my line of sight even now.

Unearthlyunearthly

I’ll be reading The Last Time We Say Goodbye soon, and I discovered that the same author wrote this series. After I saw Emily from Oh Magic Hour mention that she had devoured this book, I decided to look into it myself.

The Nightingale

the nightingale

This is another book sitting on my coffee table and I meant to read it when I first received it, but it hasn’t happened yet. This is one I’m really excited for.

The Stars of Summer

starsofsummer

Thank you Penguin for the ARC of this greatly anticipated sequel to All Four Stars. I’m beyond excited about this one!

Under a Painted Sky

under a painted sky

I’ve heard fabulous things about this book from Jen at Pop Goes the Reader, and I’m really intrigued by its premise.

The Seduction of Water

the seduction of water

Here’s an author I love and I’ve waited too long to read this! I’ve owned a copy for awhile, and it’s time to dig in.

The Bone Season

The Bone Season

Due to Kim’s recommendation from The Midnight Garden, I’m planning to start this series this spring.

The Sound of Life and Everything

the sound of life and everything

Speculative historical fiction set in the 1950s—and it’s said to be “perfect for fans of When You Reach Me” (which happened to become one of my favorite books!).

What are the titles you absolutely must read first for SPRING?!?

What Katie Read
%d bloggers like this: