Book Review: Pandora’s Boy


Title: Pandora’s Boy (Flavia Albia Mystery #6)
Author: Lindsey Davis
Rating:


A suspicious death and subsequent murder send Flavia Albia down a twisted path to expose corruption and betrayal in Lindsey Davis’s next historical mystery.

First century Rome is not the quiet, orderly city that it pretends to be and in this environment, a very clever private informer can thrive. Flavia Albia, daughter of Marcus Didius Falco, is a chip off the old block. She’s taken over his father’s old profession, and, like him, she occasionally lets her love of a good puzzle get in the way of her common sense. Such is the case when one such puzzle is brought to her by the very hostile ex-wife of Albia’s new husband.

It seems that over on the Quirinal Hill, a naive young girl, one Clodia Volumnia, has died, and there’s a suggestion that she was poisoned by a love potion. The local witch, Pandora, would have been the one to supply such a potion. Looking into the matter, Albia soon learns that Pandora carries on a trade in herbal beauty products while keeping hidden her much more dangerous connections.

Albia soon discovers the young girl was a handful and her so-called friends were not as friendly as they should have been. The supposedly sweet air of the Quirinal hides the smells of loose morality, casual betrayal, and even gangland conflict. When a friend of her own is murdered, things become serious and Albia is determined to expose as much of this local sickness as she can—beginning with the truth about the death of little Clodia.

My Review

I thought this book was the first in the series. Once again, I need to learn to do my research before reading books. This is actually number six in the series. Though with reading between the lines you get enough of the back story that it did not matter that this was number six and not number one. I had no problems picking it up and reading without knowing what books one through five were about.

The was a very clever story line with a wonderful plot and characters. Though I do admit that I do not know much about Roman history during this time but I feel a woman private informer is a bit of a reach but I could be wrong. I enjoyed the boldness of Flavia Albia and how she did not let anything stop her from solving the mystery. Though I do think her husband is a bit of a loose minded person. Again this is my opinion of this book if I had known more of the back story I may understand why her husband acts the way he acts.

This basically is a story of a teenager’s group out gone bad. Flavia Albia has to sort though the teenager’s stories and their standing up for their friends stories. To which she does solve the case and no I will not tell you the end of the story here. The book is worth the read and I do suggest you read it, but like always with any series, I suggest reading them in order.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.

Book Review: Fortune’s Wheel


Title: Fortune’s Wheel
Author: Carolyn Hughes
Rating:


Plague-widow Alice atte Wode is desperate to find her missing daughter, but her neighbours are rebelling against their masters and their mutiny is hindering the search.

June 1349. In a Hampshire village, the worst plague in England’s history has wiped out half its population, including Alice atte Wode’s husband and eldest son. The plague arrived only days after Alice’s daughter Agnes mysteriously disappeared, and it prevented the search for her.

Now the plague is over, the village is trying to return to normal life, but it’s hard, with so much to do and so few left to do it. Conflict is growing between the manor and its tenants, as the workers realise their very scarceness means they’re more valuable than before: they can demand higher wages, take on spare land, and have a better life. This is the chance they’ve all been waiting for.

Although she understands their demands, Alice is disheartened that the search for Agnes is once more put on hold. When one of the rebels is killed, and then the lord’s son is found murdered, it seems the two deaths may be connected, both to each other and to Agnes’s disappearance.

If you enjoy this book, please come back and leave a review.

My Review

Ever read a book and sit there & try to decide where the story actually starts and where the story actually is? For me this was that type of book. I wanted to enjoy this book, it is set in the right time frame, the author knew what she was writing about, but I could not get into the story. It was bad enough I dropped it mid way through the book and read another two books before remembering that I forgot to finish this one. In all honesty, the story line was quite boring to me and hard to get into. The characters were well developed and the plot lines were there. I just could not get into the story or get it to hold my interest. I finally did read it but it still left me with a disappointed feel.

Don’t get me wrong, the book was good, just very slow paced and you figured everything out well before the author told you what happened. I am pleased with the ending though to be honest with the time era I feel it was more of a fairy-tale ending then one that actually would have taken place.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.

Book Review: The Captured Bride


Title: The Captured Bride (Daughters of the Mayflower – book 3)
Author: Michelle Griep
Rating:


Mercy Lytton, a scout with keen eyesight raised among the Mohawks, and Elias Dubois, a condemned traitor working both sides of the conflict, must join together to get a shipment of gold safely into British hands.
A brand new series for fans of all things related to history, romance, adventure, faith, and family trees.

A War-Torn Countryside Is No Place for a Lady
Mercy Lytton is a lady like none other. Raised amongst the Mohawks, she straddles two cultures, yet each are united in one cause. . .to defeat the French. Born with a rare gift of unusually keen eyesight, she is chosen as a scout to accompany a team of men on a dangerous mission. Yet it is not her life that is threatened. It is her heart. Condemned as a traitor, Elias Dubois faces the gallows. At the last minute, he is offered his freedom if he consents to accompany a stolen shipment of French gold to a nearby fort—but he is the one they stole it from in the first place. It turns out that the real thief is the beguiling woman, Mercy Lytton, for she steals his every waking thought. Can love survive divided loyalties in a backcountry wilderness?

Join the adventure as the Daughters of the Mayflower series continues with The Captured Bride by Michelle Griep.

More in the Daughters of the Mayflower series:
The Mayflower Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse – set 1620 Atlantic Ocean (February 2018)
The Pirate Bride by Kathleen Y’Barbo – set 1725 New Orleans (April 2018)
The Captured Bride by Michelle Griep – set 1760 during the French and Indian War (June 2018)
The Patriot Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse – set 1774 Philadelphia (coming August 2018)?
The Cumberland Bride by Shannon McNear – set 1794 on the Wilderness Road (coming October 2018)
The Liberty Bride by MaryLu Tyndall – set 1814 Baltimore (coming December 2018)

My Review

I read the first two in the series, the first one was ok, but too religious for me. The second one was a lot better and the third one here has me hooked on the series. They keep getting better and better. Though they all have the religious area that I am not horribly fond of, neither the second or the third one had as much as the first one did.

This time you are brought into the wild west. You find the main character, Mercy, a woman before her time. This woman can kick some butt. When most of the time in that period women were expected to be married and in the house, Mercy is in the military kicking butt. Even though she is half white & half Native American she does not seem to get the huge amount of backlash you would expect her to get. Other then from Rufus whom you quickly learn to dislike and distrust.

The story line keeps your reading and I will admit I read well past my normal bedtime reading this cause I could not wait to read what happened next. The best part about this series is that there is no actual order. Each book is written by a different author and other then chronological order no story builds upon the other. They can each be a stand alone book I have found. So if the one of them does not strike your reading style then look at another one in the series. Though to be honest all three so far are well worth reading.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.

Book Review: Queen’s Progress


Title: Queen’s Progress
Author: M.J. Trow
Rating:


As advance guard for the Queen’s Progress, Christopher Marlowe tackles murder and intrigue within some of England’s grandest stately homes.

May, 1591. When Queen Elizabeth decides to embark on a Royal Progress, visiting some of the grandest homes in England, her new spymaster, Sir Robert Cecil, sends Kit Marlowe on ahead, to ensure all goes smoothly. But Marlowe’s reconnaissance mission is dogged by disaster: at Farnham Hall, a body is hurled from the battlements; at Cowdray Castle, a mock tournament ends in near tragedy; at Petworth, a body is discovered in the master bedroom, shot dead.

By the time he reaches Chichester, Marlowe fears the worst. Are the incidents linked? Is there a conspiracy to sabotage the Queen’s Progress? Who is pulling the strings – and why? To uncover the truth, Marlowe must come up with a fiendishly clever plan.

My Review

We all know the turbulent start to Queen Elizabeth’s rule so knowing that you already know the main plot line behind this story. Though it was well written out and had quite a bit of mystery and intrigue in it, I was not impressed with the writing style and the author’s use of modern language. I do not expect complete language of the time but this was written almost in complete modern English slang and all. It just left me wanting more of a language of the age book then a modern language book.

I am not saying that the book was bad, it was quite good actually. The characters were well written, the story line was good. You could tell the author did their research on the time and places the book takes you to. I just was not happy with the modern day English, but that is a personal issue not the book’s fault.

The clever plan was quite interesting and even I did not pick it apart until the whole thing was finished. In the end, it was a very interesting book and kept you engaged and wanting to know more so in that it was a very good book.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.

Book Review: Olympian Challenger


Title: Olympian Challenger
Author: Astrid Arditi
Rating:


A hero’s tournament. A defiant contender. Does one girl have the courage to take on Mount Olympus?

Hope’s world doesn’t have room for heroes. She barely has time for schoolwork, swim team, and taking care of her ailing mother. But when she’s invited to a mysterious tournament, the all-powerful hosts won’t take no for an answer.

Transported to Mount Olympus, Hope comes face to face with her new trainers—the pantheon of Greek gods. While other contenders train hard to gain a fighting edge, Hope searches for a way out. Instead, she finds a gorgeous shadow god who may just convince her to stay…

As each round unfolds, the ultimate prize draws closer—the granting of her heart’s deepest desire. If she survives the final challenge, her mother’s cure would be within reach…but only if Hope can ignore the tournament’s dark purpose.

Olympian Challenger is the first book in a bold YA urban fantasy trilogy. If you like Greek mythology, forbidden romance, and feats of courage, then you’ll love Astrid Arditi’s heroic coming-of-age tale.

My Review

Ok, I chose this book cause I love Greek Mythology so any book that has that will get a second look from me. I was happy I gave this book a read. Let me get you straight on this. This book is a young adult (I mean young, almost pre-teen in my opinion) book. Not that I am complaining one bit about it. The story line was very interesting and the characters were very well developed. The characters were easily either liked or disliked quite quickly and that kept the story moving along. The casting of how the Gods & Goddesses were left me a little sour in the mouth but that is to be expected. Hades was cast as a bit more “evil” then I feel that he actually is in most of the legends. My main issue is that for most of the heroes in the story you had to go outside the book to find their back stories. I felt that the story would have been better if you knew the legends about the heroes that are listed in the book. Why they behave and act the way they do.

The main character, Hope, is very well developed and you quickly like her and cheer & cry along with her as she unwillingly competes in the challenge with her rivals. You feel the deep love she has for her mother and for me the ending was quite a shock. The decision she made, in my opinion, will either break her or make her stronger down the line.

I can not wait for the next two books to come out to see where this story line and plot go. If nothing else to read more about the budding romance between Hope & her shadow god. Even if you are an adult and want a nice easy read that will keep you engaged then you will like this book.

 

I received this book from Net Galley for this review.