Why I love To Read
It hasn’t been the best week for Jessica McClain.
Her mate has been kidnapped by a Goddess hell-bent on revenge — but Jessica is playing for keeps.
Because she’s the only female werewolf in town…it comes with its own set of rules…and powers.
Aided by two vamps, two loyal Pack members, and one very reluctant human, Jessica must rescue her man while coming to terms with what being a wolf really means.
All in a day’s work for a girl.
The second novel in the Jessica McClain series is a full on action adventure featuring one angry Goddess and plenty of monsters, demons, and a few newly risen beasties…
Cecylee is the apple of her mother’s eye. The seventh daughter, she is the only one left unmarried by 1424, the year she turns nine. In her father’s eyes, however, she is merely a valuable pawn in the game of marriage. The Earl of Westmorland plans to marry his youngest daughter to 13-year-old Richard, Duke of York, who is close to the throne. He wants this splendid match to take place so badly, he locks his daughter up.
The event that fuels the narrative is Cecylee’s encounter with Blaybourne, a handsome archer, when she is twenty-six years old. This love affair produces a child (the “One Seed” of Book II), who becomes King Edward IV. But how does a public figure like Cecylee, whose position depends upon the goodwill of her husband, carry off such an affair? The duke could have locked her up, or disposed of this illegitimate son.
But Richard does neither, keeping her firmly by his side as he tries to make his voice heard in the tumultuous years that encompass the end of the Hundred Years War – during which England loses all of her possessions in France – and the opening phase of the Wars of the Roses. He inherits the political mantle of his mentor Duke Humphrey of Gloucester, and become’s the people’s champion. The rambunctious Londoners are unhappy that their country has become mired in misrule due to the ineptitude of a King prone to fits of madness. Nor are they better pleased by the attempts of the King’s French wife to maneuver herself into power, especially as she was responsible for England’s losses in France. But can Richard and Cecylee prevail? Everywhere, their enemies lurk in the shadows.
The Thwarted Queen is a powerful and intriguing piece of historical fiction. In the past, I’ve read many novels about Edward IV and his queen, Elizabeth. However, I’ve never read anything from the perspective of his mother, Lady Cecylee. I found Lady Cecylee to be a very strong lady and someone I wanted to read more about.
Ms. Haggard wrote this book from the first person perspective of Lady Cecylee. In fact, Lady Cecylee calls it her memoirs. The first person perspective worked really well with the telling of this story. You are able to really see inside all her schemes and emotions. You know her insecurities, how proud she could be and how, at times, unforgiving she could be.
This book, also, reminds readers how awful women were treated. It didn’t matter if you were noble-born or peasant-born. Each woman felt her own kind of helplessness. Young, noble girls were basically sold to the highest bidder inexchange for wealth and power. Sometimes a young lady would be married as young as four years old. The child would be taken from her mother’s care and live with her new husband’s family. There was much abuse during those times. Lady Cecylee fought against marrying her daughters off at such a tender age. She didn’t always succeed. Ms. Haggard gave us an idea how brutal life could be for a woman in 1400s.
It’s nice to see another strong woman during that time. I loved all the references to Eleanor of Aquitaine who happens to be my favorite historical figure. I liked that Lady Cecylee fashioned herself after Eleanor. However, Lady Cecylee was far from perfect. She was supposedly responsible for some truly horrific things. But she seemed, in the end, to be sorry. I don’t think she would have changed a thing if she had to do it all over again.
The Thwarted Queen is a wonderful book. I highly recommend it for any historical fiction fan. It is an interesting take of the reigns of Edward IV and Richard III.
Cynthia’s biggest influence was her grandmother, Stephanie Treffry, who had a natural story-telling ability. As a widow in 1970s Britain, Grandma Stephanie didn’t drive a car, so would spend time waiting for buses. Her stories were about various encounters she had at those bus-stops. Nothing extraordinary, except that she made them so funny, everyone was in fits of laughter. A born entertainer, Cynthia tries to emulate her when she writes her novels.
In case you were wondering, she is related to H. Rider Haggard, the author of SHE and KING SOLOMONS’S MINES. (H. Rider Haggard was a younger brother of her great-grandfather.) Cynthia Sally Haggard is a member of the Historical Novel Society. You can visit her website atwww.spunstories.com.
Monday, February 11
VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR SCHEDULE
Review at Griperang’s Bookmarks
Review & Giveaway at Luxury Reading
Tuesday, February 12
Review at The Book Garden
Wednesday, February 13
Review & Giveaway at Peeking Between the Pages
Thursday, February 14
Review at Flashlight Commentary
Friday, February 15
Review at Ageless Pages Reviews
Guest Post at Flashlight Commentary
Monday, February 18
Review at The Lit Bitch
Review & Giveaway at Confessions of an Avid Reader
Tuesday, February 19
Interview & Giveaway at The Lit Bitch
Wednesday, February 20
Review at A Book Geek
Thursday, February 21Review at Psychotic State Book Reviews
Feature & Giveaway at The Maiden’s Court
Friday, February 22
Review & Giveaway at A Bookish Affair
Monday, February 25
Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Tuesday, February 26
Review at Kinx’s Book Nook
Interview & Giveaway at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Wednesday, February 27
Review at A Chick Who Reads
Thursday, February 28
Author Guest Post at A Chick Who Reads
Friday, March 1
Review at Sharon’s Garden of Book Reviews
Monday, February 11
After living under the radar for the last twenty-six years, Jessica is thrust unexpectedly into her first change, a full ten years late. She wakes up and finds she’s in the middle of a storm. Now that she’s become the only female full-blooded werewolf in town, the supernatural world is already clamoring to take a bite out of her and her new Pack must rise up and protect her. But not everyone is on board. The werewolf Rights of Laws is missing text and the superstitious werewolves think that Jessica means an end to their race. It doesn’t help when Jessica begins to realize she’s more. She can change partway and hold her form, and speak directly to her wolf. But the biggest complication by far is that her alpha father can’t control her like he can the rest of his wolves. When a mercenary who’s been hired by the vampires shows up to extract information about the newly turned werewolf only days after her change, they find themselves smack in the middle of a war and there’s no choice but to run together. When it’s up to Jessica to negotiate her release against her father’s direct orders, she chooses to take an offer for help instead. In exchange, Jessica must now swear an oath she may end up repaying with her life.
After living under the radar for the last twenty-six years, Jessica is thrust unexpectedly into her first change, a full ten years late. She wakes up and finds she’s in the middle of a storm. Now that she’s become the only female full-blooded werewolf in town, the supernatural world is already clamoring to take a bite out of her and her new Pack must rise up and protect her.
But not everyone is on board. The werewolf Rights of Laws is missing text and the superstitious werewolves think that Jessica means an end to their race. It doesn’t help when Jessica begins to realize she’s more. She can change partway and hold her form, and speak directly to her wolf. But the biggest complication by far is that her alpha father can’t control her like he can the rest of his wolves.
When a mercenary who’s been hired by the vampires shows up to extract information about the newly turned werewolf only days after her change, they find themselves smack in the middle of a war and there’s no choice but to run together. When it’s up to Jessica to negotiate her release against her father’s direct orders, she chooses to take an offer for help instead. In exchange, Jessica must now swear an oath she may end up repaying with her life.
Q: Which do you prefer most: printed book or eReader?
A: How about both? I love my Kindle because it allows me to read anyplace, anywhere. Plus, and I don’t know why, I seem to be able to read a lot more books on my Kindle. It’s weird. But, at the same time, nothing beats turning the pages of a printed book. The smell, texture and words give a printed book so much more richness. I recently wrote a blog post about this very topic. Please check it out here.
When the concierge of The Alexander, a historic Atlanta apartment building, invites his fellow residents to join him for weekly screenings ofDownton Abbey, four very different people find themselves connecting with the addictive drama, and—even more unexpectedly—with each other…
Samantha Davis married young and for the wrong reason: the security of old Atlanta money—for herself and for her orphaned brother and sister. She never expected her marriage to be complicated by love and compromised by a shattering family betrayal.
Claire Walker is now an empty nester and struggling author who left her home in the suburbs for the old world charm of The Alexander, and for a new and productive life. But she soon wonders if clinging to old dreams can be more destructive than having no dreams at all.
And then there’s Brooke MacKenzie, a woman in constant battle with her faithless ex-husband. She’s just starting to realize that it’s time to take a deep breath and come to terms with the fact that her life is not the fairy tale she thought it would be.
For Samantha, Claire, Brooke—and Edward, who arranges the weekly gatherings—it will be a season of surprises as they forge a bond that will sustain them through some of life’s hardest moments—all of it reflected in the unfolding drama, comedy, and convergent lives of Downton Abbey.
Would you like to have Jane Austen at your fingertips? How about an App just for everything Jane Austen? Doesn’t that sound marvelous?! Well, I certainly do and I showed my support. Go to Austen Admirers and make a donation that will go towards a free app for everything Austen.
I made a donation and now I’m a Countess! Now it’s your turn!
Why I love to Read
Kindle vs. Print
Kindle vs. print books seems to be an ongoing debate in the book world. There is always the question of which format you prefer. The e-readers love their devices because they can take it and read anywhere. The print supporters love the feel of an actual book in their hands. E-readers support technology and want instant access. Print supporters love the bookstore where they can browse and smell every book. My question: which is better?
How about both?! I love to read and I have a Kindle. However, I, also, have a HUGE stack of print books in my mountain of a TBR pile. I love both formats. I love that I can read anytime with a Kindle. I can even be sneaky about it and read when I’m not supposed it. Please don’t tell! I think e-readers have created another group of readers. They don’t have time to sit down and curl up with a print book. The reader has a bright screen and pick whatever font he/she wants. I like to think that this group would never pick up a print book but since they have instant access to a fun device, they are now reading. Which is a great thing!! For me, my Kindle has given me more opportunity to read, anytime and anyplace. I, also, found that I can read more books on my Kindle. I don’t understand why; maybe because I have instant access. I’m not sure but I’m not complaining.