Archive for July, 2013

I received a free copy of The Companions to review from Netgalley. The premise of the story is that several of the characters from the Forgotten Realms series, Bruenor Battlehammer, Wulfgar and Regis the halfling, choose to be reborn and meet again in twenty years in order to protect Drizzt Do’Urden from an unspecified threat.  It is a tale of love and friendship rather than good vs evil.  

At first, I felt at a distinct disadvantage not being familiar with R.A. Salvatore’s work.  The most noticeable example of that was near the beginning when the character Ruqiah suddenly declared her name was “Catti-brie.”  From the context it was clear that this was supposed to be a shocking revelation, but my reaction was more along the lines of “oh, OK.  Who the heck is Catti-brie, and why should I care about her?”  Fortunately, Salvatore made a point of answering those questions clearly and effectively.  It took me a little longer to get my head around the various races who live in this world, and their relations to each other, but that didn’t impact on my enjoyment of the book.

What I liked

Salvatore’s writing style.  His writing style is noticeably more “epic” than that of many writers I’ve read recently and I particularly enjoyed it.  It made me regret not having read more of his work sooner.  There were some amusing moments of levity too.  I’m thinking of when newly reborn Bruenor is distracted by the physical needs of his newborn body!

Character relationships. As I mentioned, I was not familiar with the characters or their previous histories, but I soon found myself liking them and rooting for them. I also appreciated the fact that the characters were subject to self doubt and at various points became unsure of and regretted the decision they made to go back to protect Drizzt.

Despite not being familiar with the characters, Salvatore did a fantastic job of showing the depths of the relationships that bind the main characters.  Although Drizzt Do’Urden has a fairly minor role in the book, I found myself wanting to read more about him given that he was able to inspire such love and devotion from our main characters.  Indeed, I purchased Homeland in order to learn more about him.

Some interesting themes.  Some of the questions raised in the book were, I thought, very interesting.  For example, the question of if you would sacrifice your own personal idea of heaven/the afterlife in order to protect a friend, and how to remain focussed on a goal which seems irrelevant to your current life.

What I didn’t like

Personally, I found the ending rather rushed.  After all the Companions have struggled for and sacrificed to save Drizzt, the actual saving seemed rather low key.

All in all though, I thoroughly enjoyed The Companions and gave it four stars out of five.

[amazon-element asin=”B00BE24W0W” fields=”med-image,medium-image-link”] Preorder on Amazon or Kobo

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During my reading for the recent BookTubeAThon in which I compared classic works of literature with more modern novels, I realised fairly early on that there is usually a very good reason why “classics” continue to be read year after year and why they have stood the test of time.    It seems to me that what they have in common is a combination of exploration of universal themes, interesting characters, entry into a fantastical new world, understanding of the human condition and/or a witty and engaging writing style. 1984 explores the theme of government control, and Big Brother is a pretty dominant “character” in the book.  Pride & Prejudice has Jane Austen’s wonderfully witty narrative combined with the eternal quest for true love.

Naturally it made me wonder which of today’s novels will become tomorrow’s classics.  Looking at Amazon’s 100 top selling books, there are several I see there that I don’t believe we will still be reading in years to come. I’m sorry E.L. James and Dan Brown, but I really doubt people will even remember Fifty Shades of Grey or Inferno in fifty years’ time.  I simply don’t think they combine enough of the criteria to last.  So what will people be (re)reading in fifty years time?

Naturally, only time will tell, and I’m basing my picks mainly on the young adult/fantasy genre which is the one I know best.  My top pick would be the Harry Potter series.  I believe in this series Rowling has combined most, if not all, of my criteria.  We have the universal themes of good vs evil, sacrifice, love, friendship and family.  I imagine these themes will still be as relevant in 50 years.  As for interesting characters, I defy anyone to truly know Snape’s motivations prior to the revelations of “The Prince’s Tale” in Deathly Hallows.  The world Rowling has created is simply wonderful – like me, I’m sure many readers wished that they could have joined Harry, Ron and Hermione for some sausages, roast potatoes and pumpkin juice at the Hogwarts end of term feast or that they could have played for Gryffindor in Quidditch.  And who could doubt Rowling’s wit and intelligence when Hermione accuses Ron of having “the emotional depth of a teaspoon” or when reading of Arthur Weasley’s fascination with and misunderstandings of all things Muggle, or fail to shed a tear when Harry asks “will it hurt?” during his last walk in the Forbidden Forest?  The Harry Potter series can be downloaded as ebooks or audiobooks from the Pottermore Shop.  Check out my post on buying from Pottermore.

Another series I imagine will become a classic is George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire.  His characters are multi-dimensional and show Martin’s real understanding of human nature.  People generally don’t tend to be wholly good or wholly bad, but a blend of both, and that comes across beautifully in his characterisation.  Martin’s use of multiple points of view characters allows him to really make them live, and it’s this that I believe will secure the series a place in today’s classics.  I wrote about how spoilers enhanced my reading of the latest book, A Dance with Dragons, in this (spoilery) post.

Robert Jordan’s/Brandon Sanderson’s Wheel of Time series is another one I believe will stand the test of time.  While it doesn’t quite have Martin’s depth of character, it makes up for it in the sheer scale and breadth of the world created.  I wrote a blog post on my reaction as I read A Memory of Light.  (Spoilers, enter at own risk).

In Quebec at least, I believe French speakers will be reading Anne Robillard’s Chevaliers d’Eméraude for many, many years to come.  I truly regret that this wonderful series is not available in English.  I’m almost tempted  to write a longer series of posts on this series to introduce it to you.  Robillard creates a fantastic world which she populates with very relatable characters who are dealing with basic human struggles while engaged in a good vs evil battle for their lives.

My final pick may surprise many of you.  I would not be surprised to see Helen Fielding’s Bridget Jones’s Diary on peoples’ reading lists in years to come.  I say that because it combines a witty and entertaining style with a keen eye for character.  More to the point, it captured perfectly life for young twenty somethings of the time.  I know because I have been a Bridget Jones.  So in the way that modern people enjoy reading Jane Austen to get a glimpse of life in Regency England, people in years to come may read Bridget Jones to see get a glimpse of how we live now.

Do you agree with my choices?  What would you pick?  Let me know in the comments!

After the frantic reading of BookTubeAThon 2013 I don’t have many books to discuss for this week’s reading roundup.

The first book I read was Switched at Birth by “Kathryn Kennish”.  The quotes are around the author’s name as this book was written in the universe of ABC Family’s drama Switched at Birth about two families who discover their daughters were involved in a hospital mixup.  This show has been my recent guilty pleasure when not reading.  Other than the character drama the merging of two families causes, I’ve found it a fascinating insight into the world of the deaf – one of the young women concerned is deaf.  Many of the scenes involve, or are wholly in, American Sign Language.  The writing and acting on the show are of excellent quality, so perhaps my expectations of the novelisation were too high.  I found the novel uninteresting and lacking the depth that comes across in the show.  It was written from the point of view of the hearing mother and barely touched on one of the most interesting aspects of the book, her learning about the deaf language and culture.  I would suggest you skip the book and watch the show, but if you insist, you can pick Switched at Birth up on Kindle or Kobo.  Season 1 of the show is available on iTunes.

Another book I read this week was Anne Robillard’s Représailles, the tenth book in her Chevaliers d’Éméraude series.  This is clearly the point in the story where everything turns to custard for the Chevaliers and their allies.  Their enemies are multiplying, their key players are being targeted, the body count is increasing and their king is too wrapped up in his grief and desire for vengeance to think and act rationally.  Characterisation is one of Robillard’s strong points, and in this book I found the characters of Onyx and Hadrian fascinating.  Yes, Onyx is on a real revenge kick, especially after the tragic events of this book.   You can both empathise with him and want to kick him up the backside at the same time.  Hadrian’s real fear and frustration at being unable to control his dearest friend’s emotionally driven actions comes across clearly in this book.  The question is explicitly raised for the first time; would  an emotionally unstable king such as Onyx on the throne be any better for Enkdiev than if the evil lord wins?  Représailles is available on Kindle, Kobo and iTunes

I confess to being torn about reading book 11, La Justice Céleste, the penultimate volume.  On the one hand, I really want to see how the story ends.  On the other, I hear that Robillard pulls a George R R Martin on a favourite character in this book, and I fear it will be very painful to read.  Robillard’s characters are so well written, and I’ve spent 10 books with him so I’m dreading saying goodbye.  Ironically, I wrote a blog post in which I compared Robillard to Martin.  I just wish she didn’t share his tendency to kill off beloved characters!  Although I know the character dies, I’m not sure of the circumstances.  As this is Robillard and not Martin, I’m at least hopeful that he will get a heroic sendoff and not just fall off his horse and break his neck. Additionally, the final book, Irianeth, isn’t yet available on Kobo so I won’t be able to finish the series.

In a recent blog update I mentioned that I found Mark Lawrence’s Prince of Thorns a little too grimdark for my personal taste.  I came across an interesting review of the later books in the series which convinced me it might be worth bearing with the series.  It sounds as if there is some excellent character development for which I’m a sucker.  I will of course keep you posted on my thoughts.

Added to my library this week:

King of Thorns – both Kindle and Audible formats Whispersync
Switched at Birth: The True Story of a Mother’s Journey – Kindle
Midnight in Austenland – Kindle and Audlble formatsWhispersync
Requiem (Delirium) – Kindle and Audible formatsWhispersync
Pandemonium Enhanced Ebook (Delirium) – Kindle and Audible formatsWhispersync
The Kinshield Legacy (The Kinshield Saga) – Kindle format
The Romanov Conspiracy: A Thriller – Kindle format

I have now had my Kobo Arc for several days now and this is my update to my initial impressions.  My other tablets are a Kindle Fire an iPad 3 and a Nexus 7. I find the smaller form factors of the Nexus and the Kindle Fire very comfortable to use.

As with my review of the Kindle Fire, I will discuss how the tasks I usually undertake on my iPad and now the Kindle Fire translate to the Kobo Arc. Generally I don’t use my tablets for work/production related activities.  There are many apps I use on my iPhone to check a few quick things.

Checking email

I was able to import most of my personal accounts – two Yahoo emails, Gmail and a non standard account for my evelynne@scottishbookworminquebec.com email – with minimal hassle.  I did have a problem with one of my Yahoo accounts, but I believe that to be a Yahoo problem rather than an Arc problem.I have not been able to access my work Exchange email, but i generally check that on my iPhone rather than my tablet anyway.

Surfing the web

I find surfing the web on the Kobo Arc noticeably faster than on the Kindle Fire and about par for what I have on the iPad.  I don’t have my iCloud favourites, but I was able to install 1Password for my password management with no problem.

Checking social networking sites

I am active in Twitter, Facebook and GoodReads.  All of these have apps available on iOS and Android and are great to use and look at in both environments.

Reading magazines

Although I prefer reading novels on my Kindle Paperwhite or Kobo Glo, magazines are a delight to read on tablets.  I use Zinio for my magazine subscriptions and have a subscription to Entertainment Weekly but was not able to find that as a standalone app for Android.  Zinio magazines are great on the Kobo Arc. Despite the smaller screen size, the high  resolution of the Kobo Arc’s screen means that the text is still easily legible.

Watching videos

This is one area in which the iPad has superiority with its larger screen.  On my iPad I watch iTunes movies and Netflix as well as use the remote app to control my Apple TV.  The Kobo Arc has access to the Google Playstore which means any movies you purchase or rent on there will be available on the Kobo Arc.  Netflix is also available for the Arc as is any movie you have on your UV account.

The TV stations such as Global TV, ABC, BBC, CTV have not yet released apps available on Android, and as the default browser doesn’t support Flash I’ve not found a way to watch streaming video from them.

Most of my non book content is in iTunes, which I have not yet managed to access on my Android devices.

Checking on the news

I usually get my news from the BBC News app.  Again, the app is available for both iPad and Android and is gorgeous to browse.  La Presse is also available for Android on the Google Play Store.  The Google Play Store for Canada is more mature than the Amazon Canada app store, so there are likely to be more Canadian apps there.

Shopping

It has to be said, shopping for books on Kobo is rather a painful experience if you’re looking for a specific book.  It seems hit or miss if the search function will actually find it.  I prefer to go through the Chapters/Indigo website and from there through to Kobo.

On the other hand, with the Google Play Store, you have far more access to other media than on the Kindle Fire.

Summary

Like the Kindle Fire, the Kobo Arc is a very nice budget tablet, with a focus on connecting you to content.  As well as the Kobo content, it has full access to the Google Play Store which gives you access to millions of books, songs, movies and content.

You can’t really go wrong with this tablet, especially at the current reduced price.

Kobo Aura

I have now had my Kobo Arc for several days now and this is my update to my initial impressions.  My other tablets are a Kindle Fire an iPad 3 and a Nexus 7. I find the smaller form factors of the Nexus and the Kindle Fire very comfortable to use.

As with my review of the Kindle Fire, I will discuss how the tasks I usually undertake on my iPad and now the Kindle Fire translate to the Kobo Arc. Generally I don’t use my tablets for work/production related activities.  There are many apps I use on my iPhone to check a few quick things.

Checking email

I was able to import most of my personal accounts – two Yahoo emails, Gmail and a non standard account for my evelynne@scottishbookworminquebec.com email – with minimal hassle.  I did have a problem with one of my Yahoo accounts, but I believe that to be a Yahoo problem rather than an Arc problem.I have not been able to access my work Exchange email, but i generally check that on my iPhone rather than my tablet anyway.

Surfing the web

I find surfing the web on the Kobo Arc noticeably faster than on the Kindle Fire and about par for what I have on the iPad.  I don’t have my iCloud favourites, but I was able to install 1Password for my password management with no problem.

Checking social networking sites

I am active in Twitter, Facebook and GoodReads.  All of these have apps available on iOS and Android and are great to use and look at in both environments.

Reading magazines

Although I prefer reading novels on my Kindle Paperwhite or Kobo Glo, magazines are a delight to read on tablets.  I use Zinio for my magazine subscriptions and have a subscription to Entertainment Weekly but was not able to find that as a standalone app for Android.  Zinio magazines are great on the Kobo Arc. Despite the smaller screen size, the high  resolution of the Kobo Arc’s screen means that the text is still easily legible.

Watching videos

This is one area in which the iPad has superiority with its larger screen.  On my iPad I watch iTunes movies and Netflix as well as use the remote app to control my Apple TV.  The Kobo Arc has access to the Google Playstore which means any movies you purchase or rent on there will be available on the Kobo Arc.  Netflix is also available for the Arc as is any movie you have on your UV account.

The TV stations such as Global TV, ABC, BBC, CTV have not yet released apps available on Android, and as the default browser doesn’t support Flash I’ve not found a way to watch streaming video from them.

Most of my non book content is in iTunes, which I have not yet managed to access on my Android devices.

Checking on the news

I usually get my news from the BBC News app.  Again, the app is available for both iPad and Android and is gorgeous to browse.  La Presse is also available for Android on the Google Play Store.  The Google Play Store for Canada is more mature than the Amazon Canada app store, so there are likely to be more Canadian apps there.

Shopping

It has to be said, shopping for books on Kobo is rather a painful experience if you’re looking for a specific book.  It seems hit or miss if the search function will actually find it.  I prefer to go through the Chapters/Indigo website and from there through to Kobo.

On the other hand, with the Google Play Store, you have far more access to other media than on the Kindle Fire.

Summary

Like the Kindle Fire, the Kobo Arc is a very nice budget tablet, with a focus on connecting you to content.  As well as the Kobo content, it has full access to the Google Play Store which gives you access to millions of books, songs, movies and content.

You can’t really go wrong with this tablet, especially at the current reduced price.

Kobo Aura

The final pair of books I chose to read for BookTubeAthon 2013 were Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice and Shannon Hale’s Austenland.  I should disclose upfront that in preparing this blog post I rewatched the Mr-Darcy-wet-shirt scene multiple times – only in the interests of research, you understand.

Both novels are romantic comedies and both explore the theme of overcoming character flaws in order to be open to love.  In Elizabeth Bennet’s case that of prejudice and in Jane Haye’s a tendency to ignore the real for fantasy. P&P is of course also a wonderful character study and exploration of Regency mores.  Austenland doesn’t attempt to live up to Austen’s standard here, choosing instead to explore the blurred line between romantic fantasy and reality.

Elizabeth Bennet is a stronger heroine than Jane Hayes but the latter wins the reader’s sympathies precisely because of her vulnerabilities.  She knows she has a weakness and is taking action to work on it.  Other than their love of Mr Darcy, the heroines of both P&P and Austenland share a witty sense of humour. I was pleasantly surprised how well Austenland stood up to P&P in this case.  Of course Hale can’t match Austen’s subtle wit and repartee, but I spent several enjoyable hours reading Austenland.

On the side of the romantic interest, Darcy, especially as played by Colin Firth (see above wet shirt scene) is held up to be the ultimate love interest.  I suspect that Austen only intended him to be the perfect love interest for Elizabeth Bennet, but thanks to the BBC and Colin Firth he is now the ideal for many.  Other than roleplaying a Darcyesque character Austenland’s “Mr Nobley” is not the brooding, strong silent hero type.  In some ways his vulnerability makes him almost an anti-Darcy – but then again discarding fantasy for reality is the whole theme of this novel.

BookTubeAThon Roundup

Between them the two books allowed me to complete challenge 5 (read a book that’s been on your shelf for ages; Austenland), challenge 6 (listen to an audiobook P&P) and challenge 7 (read a classic; also P&P).  Additionally, reading them takes me to 2,398 pages for the week, completing challenge 1 (read an average of 300 pages per day).  I have now completed all seven challenges.

Thanks again to Raeleen and Ariel for organising this.  I hope all other participants had as much fun as I did.

  buy from Amazon, Kobo, iTunes, AudibleWhispersync

 buy from Amazon, Kobo, iTunes, AudibleWhispersync

   

This pair of books is probably the most difficult to compare and contrast since they are so similar.  They are written by the same author and set in the same world.

When I first read The Quickening series some while ago I very much enjoyed it.   I found the concept of Myrren’s Gift fresh and new and found the characters engaging and interesting.  During my recent reread my enjoyment remained the same.  I found myself reading “just one more chapter” to find out what was happening next for Wyl, Valentyna, Finch et all.  (handy for a reading marathon!)  It was fun to guess where Myrren’s Gift would take Wyl next and how he would achieve his goals.

I found it surprising then that I struggled so much with The Scrivener’s Tale.  I found that the plot device remained basically the same, and the characters were carbon copies of those from The Quickening.  There was Fynch Mark II, Valentyna Mark II and Wyl was found in three other characters.  This actually made it harder to care for them – having just finished The Quickening, I felt that these characters’ tales had come to a natural end and I wasn’t really interested in hearing more of them.  

The twist in this tale was supposed to be the introduction of someone from our modern world into the world of Morgravia.  This could and should have brought a fresh new dimension to the story, but Gabe has no trouble at all adapting.  This is actually a plot point, but rather defeats the purpose of the character and so much more could have been done with him.

Rather than being squeezed into a standalone novel, this might have been better as a more developed trilogy.  We could have had more time to get to know and care for the characters as being distinct from their Quickening counterparts, Gabe’s introduction to Morgravia could have been developed further and perhaps some new additions to the magic system could have been better thought out.

In all fairness, many of my gripes with The Scrivener’s Tale are due to The Quickening’s being so fresh in my mind.  With some distance perhaps the characters and plot would have seemed fresher.  I would not recommend re-reading The Quickening right before The Scrivener’s Tale.

  

For my first pair of books I chose to read two dystopian novels, the classic 1984 by George Orwell and the modern YA book by Lauren Oliver Delirium.  1984 was a reread for me to complete the “reread a book” challenge of BookTubeAThon.  I have been hearing good things about Delirium so I thought now was a good time to add it to my TBR.

Scene Setting

I had forgotten just how effectively Orwell sets his scene in 1984.   From the moment the clock strikes 13 in the first paragraph to the final sentence (this is the only time I ever reread a book’s final words multiple times in the hope that they would change – they didn’t) 1984 is full of danger, menace and despair. This is only broken up by a few interludes of happiness.  

Delirium, on the other hand, is the opposite.  Much of the book feels like a light, easygoing teen romance with only a few episodes of real danger and tension.  In 1984 the threat of being captured by the government feels very real and in the protagonist’s eyes inevitable.  In Delirium, the protagonist forgets about her society for whole long stretches.

The Premise

For me the premise in 1984 of a totalitarian State controlling everything is far more terrifying than a “cure” for love, mainly because I see it as more possible.  In both 1984 and Delirium, the totalitarian governments view romantic or familial love as a threat to society.  Other than enforcing the “cure” and persecuting those who have refused it, the government of Delirium remains far more in the background. 

The Characters

Winston and Lena are both very interesting characters, but opposite in every way.  Winston is a middle aged man, who is resigned to the situation in which he finds himself – he refers to himself often as a “dead man.”  While he would like to fight against Big Brother, he feels powerless.  Lena is a young woman with all the passion and naiveté of her age.  She is only beginning to become aware that perhaps her society isn’t as perfect as it seems.  While both lose themselves in the present during their respective love affairs, Winston is far more aware that it cannot last.  

Love and sexuality

This is a theme in both novels, which is why I chose to read them together as a pair.  In both societies, love (both romantic love and familial love) are actively put down; in 1984 because it draws loyalty away from Big Brother and in Delirium because of the “side effects” and societal “chaos” it causes.

In 1984 though, love – while a crime – is less serious than “thoughtcrime” (active disloyalty to Big Brother).  Winston does not believe Big Brother can be defeated by any action of his, so his affair with Julia is as much an act of defiance as a desire for a human connection.  Interestingly though, despite this it’s his betrayal of Julia in Room 101 that causes his capitulation.  His relationship with Julia is contrasted with his Big Brother sanctioned marriage and its breakdown.  It broke down because his wife viewed sex as a duty to Big Brother in order to procreate new Party members.

Love in Delirium is the ultimate crime.  Lena however doesn’t view it as an act of resistance against the Government, rather she is simply following her own desires and feelings.  

Resistance

Thoughts of rising up against the State are mentioned in both 1984 and Delirium.  In 1984 it’s a major plot point with Winston at one point believing he’s made contact with them.  However he doesn’t seem to believe that they have any chance at all of being effective – he places his hopes in the proletariat.  Certainly he himself does not believe he can make a difference.

In Delirium references are made to a resistance group and to those living outside the system.  Lena herself doesn’t appear to wish to be involved with them at this point, although this is only the first in the trilogy. I imagine she may become more active in subsequent books.

In Summary

While both 1984 and Delirium share many themes, 1984 is a far more tightly written, well crafted novel.  Orwell keeps the tension far more adroitly than Oliver.  In all fairness Delirium is a fun read, and I suspect I would have appreciated it more if I had not read it in conjunction with a classic.  I will certainly read the followups Pandemonium and Requiem.

This is an automated message.  Please note that due to BookTubeAThon 2013 normal posting schedule has been interrupted.  New entries will be posted when Evelynne has removed her nose from her BookTubeAThon book list.  In case of emergency, please email evelynne@scottishbookworminquebec.com

Thank you for your understanding.

To start, good luck to everyone taking part in the BookTubeAThon 2012, and thanks to Raeleen and Ariel for organising this.  I hope you’ll forgive my posting as normal text posts and not as YouTube video book reviews.

Further to my last post, I’ve made a few changes to my book lineup.  One of my favourite courses at university was my second year German literature course in which books of classic German literature were paired with more modern works.  For example, we paired Kleist’s Penthesilea with Christa Wolf’s No Place on Earth which describes a meeting between Kleist and another author.  I found this to be a particularly interesting way of generating thoughtful discussion.  I would like to do the same for this year’s BookTubeAThon.

   

For my first pairing I will be looking at Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (416 pages) and comparing it to Austenland (206 pages) by Shannon Hale.  I will be listening to Pride and Prejudice in Audible format to complete the audiobook challenge as well a the classic challenge.  Pride and Prejudice is a wonderfully witty take on the mores of Regency England and I look forward to seeing how Austenland compares.  Can it match up to Austen’s wit?  Although I bought the Audible version of Austenland last week, the ebook has been in my library since the 5th November 2011, allowing it to fulfil the challenge of reading a book that’s been on your shelf for a while.

  

Next up I will be comparing George Orwell’s 1984 (336 pages) with Lauren Oliver’s Delirium (401 pages).  I have read 1984 before, so it will meet the re-read challenge.  1984 is a classic dystopian novel and, if I remember correctly, one of the themes is suppressing romantic interest for the good of the State.  It also has the most depressing first and last lines of any book I have ever read.  The suppression of romantic love is of course the main theme of Delirium and I look forward to comparing how the two writers handle it.  I also just really want to read Delirium!  I see several of my BookTubeAThoners are reading it or one of its sequels for their reads.

   

My final pairing is perhaps stretching things a bit.  I plan on comparing Fiona McIntosh’s Bridge of Souls (512 pages) with her Scrivener’s Tale.  Bridge of Souls will complete the 500 page plus challenge as well as the one to complete a series.  The link is a little tenuous; Scrivener’s Tale (527 pages) is about a Parisian psychologist who ends up in the world of the Bridge of Souls.  Bridge of Souls is one of McIntosh’s earlier works, and Scrivener’s tale one of her later ones, and is nominated for a David Gemmell Legend award.  It will be interesting to see how her writing has developed over the intervening years.

So, if I manage to complete all this I will have made the challenges as follows:

  1. average 300 pages a day (my total will be 2,398 pages, meeting the challenge of 2,100 pages over the week)
  2. read a book of over 500 pages (The Scrivener’s Tale)
  3. reread a book (1985)
  4. finish a series (Bridge of Souls to complete The Quickening Trilogy)
  5. read a book that’s been on your shelf for ages (Austenland)
  6. listen to one audiobook (Pride & Prejudice)
  7. read a classic (Pride & Prejudice)

Good luck everyone and enjoy BookTubeAThon