Tag: Karen chance

Brave the Tempest by Karen Chance Review

Brave the Tempest (Cassandra Palmer, #9)

Title: Brave the Tempest

Series: Cassie Palmer #9

Author: Karen Chance

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Synopsis: Cassie Palmer has been chief seer of the supernatural world for a little over four months. In that time, she’s battled two gods, fallen in love with two men, and confronted the two sides of her own nature, both god and human. So it’s not surprising that she currently finds herself facing two adversaries, although they have a single purpose: to wipe out the supernatural community’s newest fighting force, leaving it vulnerable to enemies in this world and beyond.

To prevent catastrophe, the vamps, mages, and demons will have to do the one thing they’ve never managed before and come together as allies. Cassie has the difficult task of keeping the uneasy coalition intact, and of persuading her own two opposing forces, a powerful mage with a secret and a master vampire with a growing obsession, to fight at her side. She just hopes they can do it without tearing each other apart.

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Format: ebook

Pages/Hours: 544 pages

Ownership: Own (eARC from NetGalley)

My Rating: ★★★★★

Tags: Overarching Story-line, Fast-Paced, Humorous

Themes: Love Triangle, Slow Burn Romance

Review:  544 pages of pure awesome!!

This book wasn’t exactly a long time coming but there has been a lot building up to it since the beginning and it hit the mark just perfectly! It’s the perfect book for dedicated fans of the series. For those of us who have been rooting for Cassie and dying to see her coming into her power and strength and owning her new position of authority.

And fans of this guy ^^^ are in for a real treat 😍 😍 😍

Brave the Tempest is released tomorrow, July 30th 2019

Get the book: Amazon | Book Depository

Synopsis and book cover from Goodreads. Photos from my Instagram @elainehowlin_

May Wrap Up | Part One

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I had a lot of catching up to do to get back on track for my reading goal so I read a bit more than normal this month. I’m now two books ahead of schedule 🎉

This has been an urban fantasy and paranormal heavy month because of the Vampire Wars reading challenge but those genres are pretty much my bread and butter so it’s been a very good month.

Halfway to the Grave (Night Huntress #1) by Jeaniene Frost ★★★★★

Halfway to the Grave (Night Huntress, #1)

Urban Fantasy, Romance

This was my third time reading this book. The first time I hated it and the second I really enjoyed it. I decided to give the audiobook a go this time round and really enjoyed that too. I have no idea why I hated it so much the first time…

The series follows Cat and Bones, a dhampire and a vampire who hunt vampires.

Reap the Wind (Cassie Palmer #7) by Karen Chance ★★★★☆

Reap the Wind (Cassandra Palmer, #7)

Urban Fantasy

My favourite series 💜 I’ve been rereading this in anticipation of Brave the Tempest coming out this year. The series has an overarching storyline so I can’t tell you about what happens in this one but the series follows Cassie, a time-hopping clairvoyant during a war between supernatural factions. It’s a fast-paced and action packed series.

Ride the Storm (Cassie Palmer #8) by Karen Chance ★★★★★

Ride the Storm (Cassandra Palmer, #8)

Urban Fantasy

I loved this book! I’m so glad I reread it before starting Brave the Tempest because there were some introductions in this book that I had actually forgotten about. This one isn’t as action focused as Reap the Wind but it’s better for it.

One Foot in the Grave by Jeaniene Frost Elaine Howlin Book Blog

One Foot in the Grave (Night Huntress #2) by Jeaniene Frost ★★★★☆

One Foot in the Grave (Night Huntress, #2)

Urban Fantasy, Romance

I decided I might as well listen to the second book in the series after listening to the first. The audiobooks are pretty good for this one though the narrators British accent for Bones grates on me a little bit.

Pleasure of the Dark Prince (Immortals After Dark #9) by Kresley Cole ★★★★★

Pleasure of a Dark Prince (Immortals After Dark, #9)

Paranormal Romance

One of my favourites from this series 💜 I absolutely love their journey on the rubber boom ship in the Amazon. It adds an element of natural magic and mystery to a paranormal story.

Brave the Tempest by Karen Chance Elaine Howlin Book Blog

Brave the Tempest (Cassie Palmer #9) by Karen Chance ★★★★★

Brave the Tempest (Cassandra Palmer, #9)

Urban Fantasy, Romance

I was so excited to get this ARC from NetGalley! I absolutely loved it! It felt like a book written specially for fans of the series, connecting events from much earlier books and just being amazing! Due for release July 30th, 2019.

Romancing the Duke (Castles Ever After #1) by Tessa Dare ★★★★★

Romancing the Duke (Castles Ever After, #1)

Historical Romance

Humorous and sweet. A good one for fans of romances inspired by Beauty and the Beast

A Ghost in the Glamour: A Linx & Bogie Story by Elizabeth Hunter ★★★★☆

A Ghost in the Glamour: A Linx & Bogie story

Paranormal, Mystery

A very short book but very well written. Hunter is great at writing fantasy/paranormal that focuses mainly on a good story instead of romance or action.

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May Reading

I’m taking part in a reading challenge this month that announces tasks each week so I can’t really plan for that but there are a few books I would like to read this month.

I’m also still playing Romanceopoly but I haven’t decided on a book for that yet.

Reap the Wind (Cassie Palmer #7) by Karen Chance

Reap the Wind (Cassandra Palmer, #7)

Being a time traveler is a bitch, just ask Cassie Palmer. As the Pythia, or chief seer for the supernatural world, she’s got responsibilities and powers — including the ability to travel through time — she still doesn’t fully understand. Cassie is on what should have been a quick mission to rescue the near immortal mage John Pritkin, a friend lost in time. But nothing is ever simple where Cassie is concerned.

For one thing, her friend isn’t lost, his soul is, and she must hunt for it through the ages in different versions of himself. For another, Cassis is stuck traveling with Pritkin’s father, the only one who can reverse Pritkin’s curse . . . and an irascible demon who is high on Cassie’s list of least-favorite people. And third, the guardians of the time-line don’t want anyone mucking about with it — even a Pythia like Cassie — and especially not when she’s dragging a powerful demon along!

What’s a poor Pythia to do?

Well, if that Pythia is Cassie Palmer, it’s to carry on anyway. And in between flitting about through time, to also stop the return of an ancient and very vengeful god. And to find out the startling truth about her parents. And to sort out a few things with her charming, evasive and completely maddening vampire lover. And you thought your week was packed!

Iron Crowned (Dark Swan #3) by Richelle Mead

Iron Crowned (Dark Swan, #3)

An embattled mystically entwined with our own,
the Otherworld is at the mercy of one woman…
 

Shaman-for-hire Eugenie Markham is the best at banishing entities trespassing in the mortal realm. But as the Thorn Land’s queen, she’s fast running out of ways to end the brutal war devastating her kingdom. Her only hope: the Iron Crown, a legendary object even the most powerful gentry fear…

Who Eugenie can trust is the hardest part. Fairy king Dorian has his own agenda for aiding her search. And Kiyo, her shape-shifter ex-boyfriend, has every reason to betray her along the way. To control the Crown’s ever-consuming powers, Eugenie will have to confront an unimaginable temptation–one that will put her soul and the fate of two worlds in mortal peril…

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Midnight’s Daughter (Dorina Basarab #1) by Karen Chance

Midnight's Daughter (Dorina Basarab, #1)

Dorina Basarab is a dhampir-half human, half vampire. Subject to uncontrollable rages, most dhampirs live very short, very violent lives. So far Dory has managed to maintain her sanity by unleashing her anger on those demons and vampires who deserve killing.

Now Dory’s vampire father has come back into her life. Her Uncle Dracula (yes, the Dracula), infamous even among vampires for his cruelty and murderous ways, has escaped his prison. And her father wants Dory to work with gorgeous master vampire Louis-Cesare to put him back there.

Vampires and dhampirs are mortal enemies, and Dory prefers to work alone. But Dracula is the only thing on Earth that truly scares her, so when Dory has to go up against him, she’ll take all the help she can get… …

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter #7) by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7)

“Give me Harry Potter,” said Voldemort’s voice, “and none shall be harmed. Give me Harry Potter, and I shall leave the school untouched. Give me Harry Potter, and you will be rewarded.”

As he climbs into the sidecar of Hagrid’s motorbike and takes to the skies, leaving Privet Drive for the last time, Harry Potter knows that Lord Voldemort and the Death Eaters are not far behind. The protective charm that has kept Harry safe until now is broken, but he cannot keep hiding. The Dark Lord is breathing fear into everything Harry loves, and to stop him Harry will have to find and destroy the remaining Horcruxes. The final battle must begin – Harry must stand and face his enemy…

Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture by Roxane Gay

Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture

Edited and with an introduction by Roxane Gay, the New York Times bestselling and deeply beloved author of Bad Feminist and Hunger, this anthology of first-person essays tackles rape, assault, and harassment head-on.

In this valuable and revealing anthology, cultural critic and bestselling author Roxane Gay collects original and previously published pieces that address what it means to live in a world where women have to measure the harassment, violence, and aggression they face, and where they are “routinely second-guessed, blown off, discredited, denigrated, besmirched, belittled, patronized, mocked, shamed, gaslit, insulted, bullied” for speaking out. Contributions include essays from established and up-and-coming writers, performers, and critics, including actors Ally Sheedy and Gabrielle Union and writers Amy Jo Burns, Lyz Lenz, Claire Schwartz, and Bob Shacochis. Covering a wide range of topics and experiences, from an exploration of the rape epidemic embedded in the refugee crisis to first-person accounts of child molestation, this collection is often deeply personal and is always unflinchingly honest. Like Rebecca Solnit’s Men Explain Things to MeNot That Bad will resonate with every reader, saying “something in totality that we cannot say alone.”

Searing and heartbreakingly candid, this provocative collection both reflects the world we live in and offers a call to arms insisting that “not that bad” must no longer be good enough.

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The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur

The Sun and Her Flowers

From Rupi Kaur, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of milk and honey, comes her long-awaited second collection of poetry. A vibrant and transcendent journey about growth and healing. Ancestry and honoring one’s roots. Expatriation and rising up to find a home within yourself.

Divided into five chapters and illustrated by Kaur, the sun and her flowers is a journey of wilting, falling, rooting, rising, and blooming. A celebration of love in all its forms.

this is the recipe of life
said my mother
as she held me in her arms as i wept 
think of those flowers you plant
in the garden each year 
they will teach you
that people too
must wilt
fall
root
rise
in order to bloom

April Book Haul

I recently discovered https://thebookshop.ie/ thanks to Books and Charms so this is where all of my money will probably be going from now on. The Bookshop.ie sells second-hands from as little as 50c (but mostly about €2) and they are based in Ireland so shipping is nice and fast for me AND if you spend €20 shipping is free. So of course I picked up a few books.

A Place of Stones by Deirdre Purcell Elaine Howlin Literary Blog
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A Place of Stones by Deirdre Purcell

An instant bestseller in Ireland and England, here is “an unputdownable story of Irish life and love” (Maeve Binchy). Molly new nothing of her real past. For all she knew, she was a true-blue Irishwoman. When she traveled to America as a rising star of the screen, she fell in love with an irresistible American, not knowing that their love could only lead to a nightmare, and the truth of who Molly really was.

Touch the Dark by Karen Chance

Cassandra Palmer can see the future and communicate with spirits-talents that make her attractive to the dead and the undead. The ghosts of the dead aren’t usually dangerous; they just like to talk…a lot.

The undead are another matter.

Like any sensible girl, Cassie tries to avoid vampires. But when the bloodsucking Mafioso she escaped three years ago finds Cassie again with vengeance on his mind, she’s forced to turn to the vampire Senate for protection.

The undead senators won’t help her for nothing, and Cassie finds herself working with one of their most powerful members, a dangerously seductive master vampire-and the price he demands may be more than Cassie is willing to pay…

Embrace the Night by Karen Chance

Recently named the world’s chief clairvoyant, Cassandra Palmer still has a thorn in her side. As long as Cassie and a certain master vampire – the sizzling-hot Mircea – are magically bound to each other, her life will never be her own …

The spell that binds them can only be broken with an incantation found in the Codex Merlini, an ancient grimoire. The Codex’s location has been lost in the present day, so Cassie will have to seek it out in the only place it can still be found – the past.

But Cassie soon realizes the Codex has been lost for a reason. The book is rumored to contain dangerous spells, and retrieving it may help Cassie to deal with Mircea, but it could also endanger the world…

A Kiss of Shadows by Laurell K. Hamilton

My name is Meredith Gentry, but of course it’s not my real name. I dare not even whisper my true name after dark for fear that one hushed word will travel over the night winds to the soft ear of my aunt, the Queen of Air and Darkness. She wants me dead. I don’t even know why…

I fled the high court of Faerie three years ago and have been in hiding ever since. As Merry Gentry, I am a private investigator for the Grey Detective Agency: Supernatural Problems, Magical Solutions. My magical skills, scorned at the courts of Faerie, are valued in the human world. Even by human standards, my magic isn’t flashy, which is fine by me. Flashy attracts attention and I can’t afford that.

Rumour has it that I am dead. Not quite. I am Princess Meredith NicEssus. To speak that name after dark is to call down a knock upon your door from a hand that can kill you with a touch. I have been careful, but not careful enough. The shadows have found me, and they are going to take me back home, one way or another.

So the running is over. But the fighting has just begun…

Rich, sensual, brimming with dangerous magic, A Kiss of Shadows is a dazzling tour-de-force where folklore, fantasy and erotically charged adventure collide.

No Rest for the Wicked by Kresley Cole Immortals After Dark Elaine Howlin Book Blog 2
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No Rest for the Wicked by Kresley Cole

In this next installment in the Immortals After Dark SeriesUSA Today Bestselling author Kresley Cole delivers a scorching tale about a forbidding vampire who lives in the shadows and the beautiful assassin who hunts him there. 

A vampire soldier weary of life…

Centuries ago, Sebastian Wroth was turned into a vampire—a nightmare in his mind—against his will. Burdened with hatred and alone for ages, he sees little reason to live. Until an exquisite, fey creature comes to kill him, inadvertently saving him instead.

A valkyrie assassin dispatched to destroy him…

When Kaderin the Cold Hearted lost her two beloved sisters to a vampire attack long ago, a benevolent force deadened her sorrow—accidentally extinguishing all of her emotions. Yet whenever she encounters Sebastian, her feelings—particularly lust—emerge multiplied. For the first time, she’s unable to complete a kill.

Competitors in a legendary hunt…

The prize of the month-long contest is powerful enough to change history, and Kaderin will do anything to win it for her sisters. Wanting only to win her, forever, Sebastian competes as well, taking every opportunity—as they travel to ancient tombs and through catacombs, seeking relics around the world—to use her new feelings to seduce her. But when forced to choose between the vampire she’s falling for and reuniting her family, how can Kaderin live without either?

Everybody Matters by Mary Robinson Elaine Howlin Literary Blog
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Everybody Matters: A Memoir by Mary Robinson

One of the most inspiring women of our age, Mary Robinson has spent her life in pursuit of a fairer world, becoming a powerful and influential voice for human rights around the globe. Displaying a gift for storytelling and remembrance, Robinson reveals, in Everybody Matters, what lies behind the vision, strength, and determination that made her path to prominence as compelling as any of her achievements.

Born in 1944 into a deeply Catholic family-the only girl among five childrenshe was poised to become a nun before finding her own true voice.Ever since, she has challenged convention in pursuit of fairness-whether in the Church, in government and politics, or in her own family.

As an activist lawyer, she won landmark cases advancing the causes of women and marginalized people against the prejudices of the day, and in her twenty years in the Irish Senate she promoted progressive legislation, including the legalizing of contraception. She shocked the political system by winning election as Irelands first woman president in l990, redefining the role and putting Ireland firmly on the international stage. Her role as UN high commissioner for human rights, beginning in 1997, was to prove an even bigger challenge; she won acclaim for bringing attention to victims worldwide but was often frustrated both by the bureaucracy and by the willingness to compromise on principle, which reveal the deep and inherent barriers to changing the status quo. Now back in Ireland and heading her Mary Robinson Foundation-Climate Justice, she has found the independence she needs to work effectively on behalf of the millions of poor around the world most affected by climate change.

Told with the same calm conviction and modest pride that has guided her life, Everybody Matters will inspire anyone who reads it with the belief that each of us can, in our own way, help to change the world for the better. 

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Magic is dangerous — but love is more dangerous still 

When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London’s Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Friendless and hunted, Tessa seeks refuge with the Shadowhunters, a band of warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons. Drawn ever deeper into their world, she finds herself fascinated by — and torn between — two best friends and quickly realizes that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare Elaine Howlin Book Blog
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Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare

In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray has at last found safety with the Shadowhunters. But that safety proves fleeting when rogue forces in the Clave plot to see her protector, Charlotte, replaced as head of the Institute. If Charlotte loses her position, Tessa will be out on the street—and easy prey for the mysterious Magister, who wants to use Tessa’s powers for his own dark ends.

With the help of the handsome, self-destructive Will and the fiercely devoted Jem, Tessa discovers that the Magister’s war on the Shadowhunters is deeply personal. He blames them for a long-ago tragedy that shattered his life. To unravel the secrets of the past, the trio journeys from mist-shrouded Yorkshire to a manor house that holds untold horrors, from the slums of London to an enchanted ballroom where Tessa discovers that the truth of her parentage is more sinister than she had imagined. When they encounter a clockwork demon bearing a warning for Will, they realize that the Magister himself knows their every move—and that one of their own has betrayed them.

Tessa finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, but her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will—the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do?

As their dangerous search for the Magister and the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa learns that when love and lies are mixed, they can corrupt even the purest heart.

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

Danger and betrayal, love and loss, secrets and enchantment are woven together in the breathtaking finale to the #1 New York Times bestselling Infernal Devices Trilogy, prequel to the internationally bestselling Mortal Instruments series.

THE INFERNAL DEVICES WILL NEVER STOP COMING

A net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute. Mortmain plans to use his Infernal Devices, an army of pitiless automatons, to destroy the Shadowhunters. He needs only one last item to complete his plan: he needs Tessa Gray.

Charlotte Branwell, head of the London Institute, is desperate to find Mortmain before he strikes. But when Mortmain abducts Tessa, the boys who lay equal claim to her heart, Jem and Will, will do anything to save her. For though Tessa and Jem are now engaged, Will is as much in love with her as ever.

As those who love Tessa rally to rescue her from Mortmain’s clutches, Tessa realizes that the only person who can save her is herself. But can a single girl, even one who can command the power of angels, face down an entire army?

Danger and betrayal, secrets and enchantment, and the tangled threads of love and loss intertwine as the Shadowhunters are pushed to the very brink of destruction in the breathtaking conclusion to the Infernal Devices trilogy.

The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough Elaine Howlin Book Blog
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The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough

The Thorn Birds is a robust, romantic saga of a singular family, the Clearys. It begins in the early part of this century, when Paddy Cleary moves his wife, Fiona, and their seven children to Drogheda, the vast Australian sheep station owned by his autocratic and childless older sister; and it ends more than half a century later, when the only survivor of the third generation, the brilliant actress Justine O’Neill, sets a course of life and love halfway around the world from her roots.

The central figures in this enthralling story are the indomitable Meggie, the only Cleary daughter, and the one man she truly loves, the stunningly handsome and ambitious priest Ralph de Bricassart. Ralph’s course moves him a long way indeed, from a remote Outback parish to the halls of the Vatican; and Meggie’s except for a brief and miserable marriage elsewhere, is fixed to the Drogheda that is part of her bones – but distance does not dim their feelings though it shapes their lives.

Wonderful characters people this book; strong and gentle, Paddy, hiding a private memory; dutiful Fiona, holding back love because it once betrayed her, violent, tormented Frank, and the other hardworking Cleary sons who give the boundless lands of Drogheda the energy and devotion most men save for women; Meggie; Ralph; and Meggie’s children, Justine and Dane. And the land itself; stark, relentless in its demands, brilliant in its flowering, prey to gigantic cycles of drought and flood, rich when nature is bountiful, surreal like no other place on earth.

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Now I have so many books to read I shouldn’t need to buy any more for the next few months… but we all know that won’t happen.

Books Read in September

The Matchmaker's Playbook (Wingmen Inc., #1)The Princess BrideDragon's Claw (Dorina Basarab #4.5)

This is probably the shortest wrap-up I’ve ever written! I spent the first 2 weeks of September getting ready to spend the last 2 weeks of the month visiting Glenmore and Venice. Venice was definitely the more glamorous of the two 😉 So very little reading time but a great month.

The Matchmaker's Playbook (Wingmen Inc., #1)The Matchmaker’s Playbook by Rachel Van Dyken ★★★☆☆

A contemporary romance about a college guy who has started a matchmaking service for women with his friend. Business is very good until he breaks Wingman Inc.’s number one rule and falls for a client.

This was ok. Not an amazing story and I wasn’t too keen on the main male character. He was a bit too much of a fan of himself and the book as a whole was very tropey.

Ticks all the boxes for contemporary romance formula fiction so if you’re into that you will probably enjoy this.

Though it’s certainly not the best romance book I’ve read I did enjoy it enough to read the whole thing and I will most likely read the next book in the series.

Get the book: Amazon | Book Depository | Barnes & Noble

The Princess Bride by Willian Goldman Elaine Howlin Literary Blog
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The Princess BrideThe Princess Bride by William Goldman ★★★☆☆

The story of a man revising a book his father read to him as a child and that actual story. I have to admit I prefer the movie. The version of Goldman depicted in the book isn’t really a nice guy and his popping up during the story of Buttercup and Westley got annoying. I like how it’s done in the movie with the sick boy and his grandfather reading to him. That features in the book but it’s minor.

Actually, it would be better with none of that stuff and just be the adventure story of Buttercup and Westley. That story is great and a lot of fun to read.

Get the book: Amazon | Book Depository | Google | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Dragon's Claw (Dorina Basarab #4.5)Dragon’s Claw by Karen Chance ★★★★★

Another excellent addition to the Dorina Basarab series. Chance just keeps hitting them out of the park! Dragon’s Claw is a novella set after the fourth book in the series Shadow’s Bane with an awesome appearance by Pritkin from the Cassie books!!! I seriously got so excited when he showed up cause we got to see what he’s like after the events of Ride the Storm. We also get to see how Dory is doing with her vampire nature being a lot more dominant and more humorous scenes with Marlowe.

Loved it!!

Get the book: Amazon | Book Depository | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

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DNF

Bellman and Black by Diane Setterfield

I stopped reading this after 107 pages (of 320). I’d expect a book to be getting into the meat of the story by then but nothing seemed to be really happening here so I dropped it out of boredom.

Bellman & BlackSynopsis: Bellman & Black is a heart-thumpingly perfect ghost story, beautifully and irresistibly written, its ratcheting tension exquisitely calibrated line by line. Its hero is William Bellman, who, as a boy of 10, killed a shiny black rook with a catapult, and who grew up to be someone, his neighbours think, who “could go to the good or the bad.” And indeed, although William Bellman’s life at first seems blessed—he has a happy marriage to a beautiful woman, becomes father to a brood of bright, strong children, and thrives in business—one by one, people around him die. And at each funeral, he is startled to see a strange man in black, smiling at him. At first, the dead are distant relatives, but eventually his own children die, and then his wife, leaving behind only one child, his favourite, Dora. Unhinged by grief, William gets drunk and stumbles to his wife’s fresh grave—and who should be there waiting, but the smiling stranger in black. The stranger has a proposition for William—a mysterious business called “Bellman & Black” . . .


Synopsis from Goodreads. Photos from my Instagram @elainehowlin_

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