Stevie Carroll (stevie_carroll) wrote,
Stevie Carroll
stevie_carroll

Books Read and Listened To

The whole latest batch in one post...

Sense and Sensibility
by Jane Austen, Read by Juliet Stevenson
Published by NAXOS AUDIOBOOKS
Audio book
ISBN 9789626343616

http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Sense-Sensibility%3A-Unabridged-Jane-Austen/9789626343616

Blurb:
When Mrs Dashwood is forced by an avaricious daughter-in-law to leave the family home in Sussex, she takes her three daughters to live in a modest cottage in Devon. For Elinor, the eldest daughter, the move means a painful separation from the man she loves, but her sister Marianne finds in Devon the romance and excitement which she longs for. The contrasting fortunes and temperaments of the two girls as they struggle to cope in their different ways with the cruel events which fate has in store for them are portrayed by Jane Austen with her usual irony, humour and profound sensibility.

Suddenly I have a new favourite Jane Austen novel. The heroines in this one are super and their antagonists are delightfully twisty. Plus Juliet Stevenson is one of my favourite audio book narrators.


Dollface: A Novel of the Roaring Twenties
by Renee Rosen
Published by NAL Trade
eBook
ISBN 9780451419200

http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Dollface-Renee-Rosen/9780451419200

Blurb:
America in the 1920s was a country alive with the wild fun of jazz, speakeasies, and a new kind of woman--the flapper. Vera Abramowitz is determined to leave her gritty childhood behind and live a more exciting life, one that her mother never dreamed of. Bobbing her hair and showing her knees, the lipsticked beauty dazzles, doing the Charleston in nightclubs and earning the nickname "Dollface." As the ultimate flapper, Vera captures the attention of two high rollers, a handsome nightclub owner and a sexy gambler. On their arms, she gains entree into a world filled with bootleg bourbon, wailing jazz, and money to burn. She thinks her biggest problem is choosing between them until the truth comes out. Her two lovers are really mobsters from rival gangs during Chicago's infamous Beer Wars, a battle Al Capone refuses to lose. The heady life she's living is an illusion resting on a bedrock of crime and violence unlike anything the country has ever seen before. When the good times come to an end, Vera becomes entangled in everything from bootlegging to murder. And as men from both gangs fall around her, Vera must put together the pieces of her shattered life, as Chicago hurtles toward one of the most infamous days in its history, the St. Valentine's Day Massacre.

Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/768194142

Reviewed on The Good, The Bad, & The Unread.


Shepherds and Shepherding
by Jonathan Brown
Published by Shire
Print book
ISBN 9780747812265

http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Shepherds-Shepherding-Jonathan-Brown/9780747812265

Blurb:
The old-time shepherd - lamb in one hand, crook in the other - is an emblem of sturdiness, dependability and independence. He was one of the most important men on the farm, responsible for the care and well-being of the flock, with which he might need to spend days and nights out in open pastures. How did he manage his charges and his own life? What skills and equipment did he use? How did sheep farming change in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and what effect did those changes have on the shepherd's work? These are some of the questions considered by this fully illustrated exploration of shepherding life.

Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/766256214

Another excellent little reference book from Shire, with a great selection of old photographs, adverts for all manner of shepherding equipment and modern photos of old tools.


Restoration England: 1660-1699
by Peter Furtado
Published by Shire
Print book
ISBN 9780747807933

http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Restoration-England-Peter-Furtado/9780747807933

Blurb:
In a period marked by a number of great diarists, England after the Civil War was a place of pleasure and drama. Indulgences such as coffee-houses and frost fairs were enjoyed by some, while the fashion for displaying finery lent itself to a new style of shopping. However, a renewed outbreak of plague and the Great Fire of London were twin tragedies that brought instability to the age. "Restoration England" joins other titles in the new "Living Histories Series", providing the book lover with an entertaining read and a vivid insight into the real, daily lives of those living in the period: work that was done, food that was eaten and leisure activities that were pursued.

Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/767031851

A lavishly illustrated book from Shire, but I feel the author stretched the boundaries of the era a little too far into the decades following the reign of Charles II.


His Last Duchess
by Gabrielle Kimm
Published by Sphere
Print book
ISBN 9780751544503

http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/His-Last-Duchess-Gabrielle-Kimm/9780751544503

Blurb: When sixteen-year-old Lucrezia de' Medici marries the fifth Duke of Ferrara, Alfonso d'Este, she imagines life with her handsome husband will be idyllic. But little does she know that he is a very complicated man. The marriage is fraught with difficulties from the start, and, as time passes, Lucrezia becomes increasingly alienated. For Alfonso, the pressure mounts as the Vatican threatens to reclaim his title should the couple remain unable to produce an heir. Only his lover Francesca seems able to tame his increasing fury. But Alfonso's growing resentment towards his duchess soon becomes unbearable, and he begins to plot an unthinkable way to escape his problems. Originally inspired by a Robert Browning poem, His Last Duchess gorgeously brings to life the passions and people of sixteenth-century Tuscany and Ferrara. It is a story you are unlikely to forget for a long time.

Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/762075805

Bought following one of the author's writing workshops, this is a vibrant and well researched tale of the possible story behind Browning's poem. Richly populated with multi-faceted characters, and with a wonderfully complex plot towards the end in which a group of unlikely allies work to ensure that the path of true love isn't blocked by the duke's schemes.


Lady Jenny’s Christmas Portrait
by Grace Burrowes
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca
eBook
ISBN 9781402263842

http://www.sourcebooks.com/store/lady-jennys-christmas-portrait.html

Blurb:
What Lady Jenny wants for Christmas...

For Christmas, soft-spoken Lady Jenny Windham craves the freedom to pursue her artistic ambitions, though it will mean scandalizing her ducal parents and abandoning all hope of a family of her own. She confides her plans to successful artist Elijah Harrison when he's commissioned to paint a portrait of her small nephews, because assisting Elijah will bring Jenny that much closer to her heart's desire—won't it?

...Will break both their hearts.

Elijah Harrison finds in his unlikely assistant not only an inspiring muse and unappreciated talent, but also a lovely and passionate woman. If Elijah supports Jenny's career, his own professional interests will suffer, but more significantly, he will lose Jenny forever. Both Jenny and Elijah must choose between true love and a lifelong dream.

Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/774677369

Reviewed on The Good, The Bad, & The Unread.


The Tempest Graphic Novel adapted by John McDonald
adapted by John McDonald
Published by Classical Comics
Print book
ISBN 9781906332693

http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Tempest-Graphic-Novel%3A-Original-Text-John-McDonald/9781906332693

Blurb:
Cast onto the waters by his power-hungry brother Antonio, Prospero, the Duke of Milan, has been living on a distant island for a dozen years along with his daughter Miranda. In his years of banishment, Prospero has developed strong magical powers — powers that not only allow him to deduce that Antonio is on a nearby ship, but to cause the ship to run aground. At long last, Prospero has a chance to get revenge on those who have wronged him. But, will he also ruin Miranda’s chance for happiness? The Tempest is considered by many critics to be Shakespeare’s crowning glory. This full-color graphic novel presents the sparkling romantic comedy just as Shakespeare intended: in its original and unabridged format, and in its original setting. As with the other titles in this well-received series, it encourages readers to discover classical literature while staying true to Shakespeare’s vision.

Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/768711130

A brightly coloured and historically costumed telling of Shakespeare's great story of love and shipwrecks. The various spirits speaking their lines in coloured text with coloured outlines to their speech bubbles was a nice touch.


Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm: A New English Version
by Philip Pullman
Published by Penguin Classic Deluxe Edition
eBook
ISBN 9780143107293

http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Fairy-Tales-from-Brothers-Grimm-Philip-Pullman/9780143107293

Blurb:
The acclaimed retelling of the world's best-loved fairy tales by the #1 "New York Times"-bestselling author of "The Golden Compass"--now in paperback, and with 3 new tales! Two centuries ago, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm published their first volume of fairy tales. Since then, such stories as "Cinderella," "Snow White," "Rapunzel," and "Hansel and Gretel" have become deeply woven into the Western imagination. Now Philip Pullman, the "New York Times"-bestselling author of the His Dark Materials trilogy, makes us fall in love all over again with the immortal tales of the Brothers Grimm. Here are Pullman's fifty favorites--a wide-ranging selection that includes the most popular stories as well as lesser-known treasures like "The Three Snake Leaves," "Godfather Death," and "The Girl with No Hands"--alongside his personal commentaries on each story's sources, variations, and everlasting appeal.

Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/775217257

Reviewed on The Good, The Bad, & The Unread.
Tags: audio books, ebooks, good-bad-unread, goodreads, print books, reviews
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