Nothing much to report this week, except to say that I had a lovely time in the Peak District last weekend, despite the rain and fog. It all seems like a distant memory now though as the busyness of the week catches up with me!
One thing I have noticed is that I'm becoming increasingly down about the restrictiveness of my reading. I'm getting to read fewer and fewer books for pleasure and I now mostly read books because I've promised a review. It's getting to the stage where blogging and reviewing seems less like a hobby I enjoy and more like yet another thing that's dragging on my time and energy. I may have to take a break here and at Wave's after Christmas for a couple of weeks to get my mojo back. We'll see...
My Reading Week
A Private Gentleman by Heidi Cullinan
Another book I've been meaning to read for an age. I fancied a historical so pulled this out the pile, even though I knew I ought to be reading a review book. Wes is the second son of Lord Daventry whose stutter and fear of crowds makes him the subject of pity, gossip and even rumours of madness. He's a amateur botonist who love orchids and so braves a ball in order to sneak a look at a rare orchid. Whilst there he meet Michael, a myopic whore who mistakes him for someone else. Their meeting unearths a buried trauma from Michael's past and only Wes can help him. However, Wes needs help too as the pills he takes for his anxiety are fuelling a dependence on opium.
I loved, loved, loved this story which managed to deal with a number of serious themes such as drug addiction, child abuse and the difficulties of coping with a crippling stammer and yet was not depressing or too heavy handed. Wes and Michael are a delightful couple whose flaws are explored during the story but who nevertheless remain sympathetic throughout. I also loved the detail in the botany theme, the secondary character of Roger, Michael's friend and protector, and other details such as the effect of the opium on Wes and the effect of his stammer on his self-esteem. It was all rather cleverly done. I was charmed from page one and found it difficult to put the book down. If you like historicals then this should be a must-read. Grade: Excellent.
I also reviewed the good Beauty in the Breakdown by EL Esch and the very good Second Time Lucky by Dakota Flint. On Tuesday I had a visit from Heidi Belleau and Violetta Vane, talking about their love of all things Roman. It's not too late to win a prize if you leave a comment on their post HERE.
On Monday I have a guest post by Em Woods who is coming to talk about her m/m version of A Christmas Carol. Then I shall have reviews of By Chance by Cat Grant, Bittersweet by Dallas Coleman and possibly Velvet by Xavier Axleman.
Until then, have a great weekend everyone!