01 Oct
“The Haunting of Hill House” by Shirley Jackson

“The Haunting of Hill House” by Shirley Jackson

  No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream.  Hill House, not sane, stood by itself against its hills, holding darkness within; it had stood so for eighty years and might stand for eighty more.  Within, walls continued upright, bricks met neatly, floors were firm, and doors wre sensibly shut; silence lay steadily against the wood and stone of Hill House, and whatever walked there, walked alone. In Shirley Jackson’s classic horror novel The Haunting of Hill House, four individuals meet to discover […]

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29 Sep
“Dreamer’s Pool” by Juliet Marillier

“Dreamer’s Pool” by Juliet Marillier

  Dreamer’s Pool is the first installment in Juliet Marillier’s newest series, Blackthorn & Grim.  The protagonist is a woman who has been imprisoned for speaking out against authority.  Fate has not been kind to her.  She’s about to be executed for standing up for what’s right, and her time in prison has made her angry and bitter.  If she were to have her freedom, she would singlemindedly pursue revenge against Malthuin.  But revenge is not in the cards. A fae named Conmael offers to free her, but like any bargain with the fae, there’s a catch.  In exchange for […]

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26 Sep
Write On Review-a-Thon – September Edition

Write On Review-a-Thon – September Edition

Each month Brianna from The Book Vixen hosts the Write On Review-a-Thon, an event dedicated to catching up on writing reviews.  Since I’ve been super busy the past couple weeks and have fallen behind on writing, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to catch up. Here are the reviews I need to write: The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin Dreamer’s Pool by Juliette Marillier Spellbound by Sylvia Day (DNF Review) The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson Hopefully I’ll get them all finished and scheduled!  I’ll be updating this post as the weekend progresses so I’m not […]

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24 Sep
“Grudgebearer” by J.F. Lewis

“Grudgebearer” by J.F. Lewis

  Before I jump into the synopsis, I’m just gonna take a moment to say how much I love love love love love this book.  Grudgebearer is epic on every level and chock full of squee-worthy goodness. The protagonist, Kholster, is the leader of a race called the Aern.  The Aern are a nearly immortal slave race created by the Elderanni.  One of the traits that was used to control them is that if the Aern break an oath, they lose their psychic connection to the other members of their race and can’t even be near them.  It’s not a […]

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22 Sep
Review and Giveaway: “Lust” by Diana Raab

Review and Giveaway: “Lust” by Diana Raab

  WHERE ELSE where else but in art can you let your fantasies blossom and dreams flower– nowhere. Lust is the fourth book of poetry by Diana Raab.  The book explores the emotional and physical intimacy of love, painting brief pictures of private moments shared between individuals and the complex feelings that they evoke. As in most collections of poems or short stories, some words seemed to leap off the page, while others fell flat.  Part of the beauty of reading a collection of work is that it gives readers a glimpse of some of the different things an author […]

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19 Sep
“Rogue’s Pawn” by Jeffe Kennedy

“Rogue’s Pawn” by Jeffe Kennedy

  Rogue’s Pawn is the first in a trilogy of fantasy erotica novels by Jeffe Kennedy.  The story begins when Jennifer walks out of her life and through a portal to fairyland.  This seems to be a theme in the books I’ve been reading lately (see The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Real Magic for a much tamer alternative).  When Jennifer arrives, she finds that her thoughts and desires are translated into reality.  Because she has no mental control, she ends up putting herself in danger and almost dies.  The fae are impressed by her power, but they also realize that […]

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17 Sep
“Six-Gun Snow White” by Catherynne Valente

“Six-Gun Snow White” by Catherynne Valente

  Six-Gun Snow White combines the mythos of the Wild West with the familiar story of Snow White, crafting a poignant story of what it’s like to be an outsider.  The story begins when Mr. H., a silver baron, coerces a Native American woman named Gun Who Sings to be his wife.  Gun Who Sings doesn’t conform to the white man’s way of life, and dies soon after bearing a child.  The girl has a lonely childhood, running wild in the gilded cage of the estate while learning how to shoot and play cards.  Then one day Mr. H. remarries.  […]

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15 Sep
The Book Blogger’s Guide to Managing ARCs

The Book Blogger’s Guide to Managing ARCs

What is an ARC? ARC is short for Advanced Reader Copy.  Publishers send out ARCs and galley proofs to booksellers, librarians, and reviewers in the months leading up to a book’s publication date in order to generate buzz about the book before its release.  Other publishers will send out finished copies of a book in the weeks leading up to the release date as a way to generate even more publicity. Should I accept ARCs? This is an individual choice that every book blogger has to make.  Some bloggers prefer to stay away from ARCs because they don’t want to […]

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13 Sep
Recipe: Pork Cube Steak with Mushroom Red Wine Sauce

Recipe: Pork Cube Steak with Mushroom Red Wine Sauce

This recipe for pork cube steak with a mushroom red wine sauce is a twist on my grandmother’s Swiss steak recipe. While shopping at Giant a few days ago, I found some ridiculously cheap pork cube steaks.  A package of two cost $1.16, which is pretty much unheard of when buying any kind of meat in the DC area.  I wasn’t quite sure what to do with pork cube steaks, but at that price, I figured that I could afford to experiment.  My grandmother used to make Swiss steak using pounded beef, so I used her recipe as a starting […]

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12 Sep
“The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Real Magic” by Emily Croy Barker

“The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Real Magic” by Emily Croy Barker

  Nora Fischer fails at life.  Her thesis is at a standstill because she can’t apply herself enough to write anything worthwhile.  Her boyfriend visits her, only to reveal that he’s getting married to another woman.  Everything’s falling apart, and Nora isn’t quite sure what to do with herself or how to react. One day, Nora goes wandering into the woods and accidentally stumbles through a portal into another world.  There she meets Ilissa, a fae creature who promises a life filled with glamor and decadence.  Nora quite literally drinks the kool-aid, at which point she falls under Ilisa’s spell.  […]

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