Saturday, 24 February 2018

Book Review ~ Anne Boleyn by Alison Weir

“It is the spring of 1527. Henry VIII has come to Hever Castle in Kent to pay court to Anne Boleyn. He is desperate to have her. For this mirror of female perfection he will set aside his Queen and all Cardinal Wolsey’s plans for a dynastic French marriage.
Anne Boleyn is not so sure. She loathes Wolsey for breaking her betrothal to the Earl of Northumberland’s son, Harry Percy, whom she had loved. She does not welcome the King’s advances; she knows that she can never give him her heart.
But hers is an opportunist family. And whether Anne is willing or not, they will risk it all to see their daughter on the throne…”

Another great book by Alison Weir, not surprisingly.

This one is going to be tough giving my feelings without spoiling anything.
Well, you all should know who Anne Boleyn is, it’s common knowledge she is the second wife of Henry VIII, who, after not producing a son that was “promised”, had her head chopped off. So, knowing all that I read the book at a very slow speed. I even did that with the second season on the Tudors. No one wants to see their favourite character die, especially like that.
I’m just going to put my opinions out there from the start; I believe Anne Boleyn is innocent, and the only reason these outlandish accusations happened was because Henry lost interest (as per usual), and desperately wanted that son as soon as possible.
I’ve had people come up to me and say Anne is a hussy…. I’m not making any of that up.
Like Alison Weir has stated in her book, Anne didn’t even want to get with Henry at the beginning, I just believe she was hungry for power and she believed she could make the world a better place. She did, she had the bible translated so everyone can read it.
This book was brilliant, you got to see an intelligent side to Anne, and where she got her ideas and independence from. I’ve always believed Anne wasn’t an idiot, that’s why I never believed the accusations.
I don’t know how I’m going to feel about reading the next book in the series, Jane Seymour. I have strong opinions about her, and none of them are good. Saying that, I am looking forward in reading about her, mainly because of Alison Weir.
My star review:

Monday, 19 February 2018

Book Review ~ The Runaway Princess by Hester Browne

Amy Wilde is tired of the idiots her glamorous flatmate Jo tries to set her up with – she’d much rather be landscaping a garden with her dog Badger at her side than trying to find the man of her dreams. That is, until she meets Leo Wolfsburg. Handsome, polite, funny, intriguing – Leo is everything Amy could want in a man. Best of all, the attraction seems mutual.

But Leo’s lifestyle is a world away from her own. Private planes, charity balls, exclusive members’ clubs – Amy begins to realise that her simple existence has been turned upside down. And just where is Leo’s home country of Nirona, anyway? Is this all too good to be true?

I was really loving this book and the characters until I was over half-way through. I'm not going to spoil it for anyone, but something major happens and all of a sudden, the main male character (Leo) changes, and not in the good way. 
All of a sudden you don't see him as much, and when you do, he is basically annoying. What happened to the caring nice guy I met at the beginning. Power and money, changes people.

I didn't mind Amy, even if she was at times an idiot. I liked how she was a normal person, passionate about gardening. I can understand how your life can be turned on it's head when you start dating a royal. I just didn't like how it changed her.

I also found it odd that it dragged a lot. We were getting so much detail from Amy's life, but when the big romance scene happened, Hester Browne just totally skipped over it. You don't need to write a sex scene, but I would've loved to read about the car ride over to his house, when they got to his house, even the morning after I would've been happy with. But we got, they kissed then it was a few months later. It just didn't make sense with the rest of the book.

It was an okay book, I just wished it stayed on the same track.

My star rating is:

Sunday, 11 February 2018

Dear Sunday ~ Week 6

I deserve a pat on the back, another week of posting on all the allocated days. 
It did start off a bit touch and go, trying to decide what to post can be a pain in the backside, but I did it in the en.

I've also started to become healthier this week, walking for school drop off, yoga. I'm hoping it will continue, because I'm feeling more energised for it.

This week has also been busy, or I should clarify, it has been consumed by history. I've also decided to only post on this blog Tuesday, Friday and Sunday. But not all the time, only when I have something to post on that day.

Tea Tuesday is all about me getting healthy.

Thank you Tera for bringing to my attention this amazing documentary; The Life and Death of Jane Grey.

Over on the history blog, I wrote all about Alfred the Great.
What makes this man so "great"?

I dropped everything to read Year One by Nora Roberts, and I wasn't disappointed. Check out my review.

Friday, 9 February 2018

Book Review ~ Year One by Nora Roberts

It began on New Year’s Eve.

The sickness came on suddenly, and spread quickly. The fear spread even faster. Within weeks, everything people counted on began to fail them. The electrical grid sputtered; law and government collapsed—and more than half of the world’s population was decimated.

Where there had been order, there was now chaos. And as the power of science and technology receded, magic rose up in its place. Some of it is good, like the witchcraft worked by Lana Bingham, practicing in the loft apartment she shares with her lover, Max. Some of it is unimaginably evil, and it can lurk anywhere, around a corner, in fetid tunnels beneath the river—or in the ones you know and love the most.

As word spreads that neither the immune nor the gifted are safe from the authorities who patrol the ravaged streets, and with nothing left to count on but each other, Lana and Max make their way out of a wrecked New York City. At the same time, other travelers are heading west too, into a new frontier. Chuck, a tech genius trying to hack his way through a world gone offline. Arlys, a journalist who has lost her audience but uses pen and paper to record the truth. Fred, her young colleague, possessed of burgeoning abilities and an optimism that seems out of place in this bleak landscape. And Rachel and Jonah, a resourceful doctor and a paramedic who fend off despair with their determination to keep a young mother and three infants in their care alive.

In a world of survivors where every stranger encountered could be either a savage or a savior, none of them knows exactly where they are heading, or why. But a purpose awaits them that will shape their lives and the lives of all those who remain.

The end has come. The beginning comes next.

All I need to say is; WOW!
It was nail biting, edge of your seat reading. I loved every second of it, even if I cried more than once, or twice.

I’ve read a lot of Nora Roberts so far, she is just one of those authors that I know I’m going to love, no matter what book of hers I pick up. And trust me, she has published a lot of books. So, when I saw her new book was released, I dropped everything to read it.
I was told from the start that it isn’t like her other work, and I have to agree 110%. Even though the writing is the same, and I can recognise it without seeing who the author is, it was not the same story she has told countless times before. For one, there was a lot of death.

I think the story is a good one, even if it has been told before. What if a “disease” or “virus” went around killing people, no cure to help them? The ones not affected, how would life go on, law and order, everyday life?
You also see people for who they really are, either evil or kind. And in this case, dark or light.
There were a few times that I hated the human race, but majority of the time, we can be amazing.

There were a few characters that I fell in love with, mainly Eddie and his dog Joe. I don’t want to say too much of these characters because it will give away a lot of the story.

I would recommend this book to anyone, even though I get really nervous recommending books to people. What if they don’t like it? Ugh, the pressure… first world problems, I know.

Now hurry up December, I need book two ASAP!
Which means a re-read. Which isn’t all that bad.

My star rating is (of course):

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

England's Forgotten Queen: The Life and Death of Jane Grey Documentary ~ Helen Castor

Thank you Tera (adventuresbetweenpages) for letting me know about this documentary.
I have heard of Helen Castor before, I have watched a bit of her other documentary on “She-Wolves”, on England’s early Queens. So, when Tera told me about this one, I had to find out how I can watch it.

I found all three episodes (about an hour long each), on YouTube. I cannot describe how happy I was when I, not only found where I could watch it, but also for free.
Even though it was only three episodes, I didn’t think I will be able to watch them all in one day… Well, I did. I needed to watch the next episode as soon as possible.

Helen Castor is an English historian and author, after watching this documentary, I’ll definitely be getting her books.

I don’t want to go into too much detail on the documentary, because I think if you are interested in Jane Grey, or royals in general, I think you should watch it for yourself.
But, overall, Helen goes into sooooo much detail (which is great). Not only the nine days of Jane Grey being Queen of England, but a bit of her childhood, after Mary I, of England takes the crown, and everyone else in this time period.
She also travels everywhere, not just staying in one place. That might seem like a small thing, but it does make it interesting to see different places Jane visited.

Not only does she go into a lot of detail, but she also talks to other historians, which I was so happy to see. Getting other people’s opinion, from a Tudor historian, to someone who knows military history, it made it more interesting and a more of an understanding on what it was like for that time period.

I was jealous of Helen when she got to see and touch documents and books from Jane Grey and Edward VI. For someone who is obsessed with history, to be able to see something like this, makes me very, very jealous. It also makes me want to be a historian.

I would definitely recommend this documentary to everyone. You can easily watch it on YouTube!
Watch it and we can definitely talk about it.

Tuesday, 6 February 2018

Getting Healthy

Even though it’s a typical “New Years Resolution”, I think there is a reason why, when the New Year comes around, people want to either lose weight, or just become healthier.

That’s me, and yes, I know it’s February, but I have decided to start being healthier. Exercise and eating right, not so much to lose weight, but more toning and for my health.

In the mornings, instead of driving for school drop off, I’ve started to walk. Exercise and saving on petrol; two birds with one stone.
I also want to start Yoga.

I want to become one of those people obsessed with fitness.

If you have any tips or app’s, please let me know.

Sunday, 4 February 2018

Dear Sunday ~ Week 5

I did it!! I posted on all the days I said I would. That, not only deserves a pat on the back, but a new book…
Okay, I say that, because I did buy a new book this week, but it’s Nora Roberts, and I’m in love with her.

It has been a really good week, not because I posted on all the days, but my son went back to school on Wednesday after a very, very, long summer holiday.
I still can’t believe he's in year one. I know I say it a lot, but where did all that time go. I remember when he was born, thinking school was ages away.
I’m getting old.

I've also come to the conclusion that this year (hopefully), I'm going to be more organised, healthier, and most importantly, spend more time on myself. New years resolution can start in February, can't they?

If you missed any of my posts this week, here they all are. Just click the links below.

Tea Tuesday I did a book tag; You're Not Good Enough. Surprisingly, some of the questions were pretty hard to answer.

Watching Wednesday is all about my son's favourite show; Teen Titans Go! ... Okay, it's also my favourite as well.

Over on the history blog, I wrote all about Marlene Dietrich. I was so happy I got to know more of this fascinating woman.

I finally got to review all the Manga books I read over the Christmas holidays. I did it all in one blog post.