Game of Thrones Versus History: Written in Blood, edited by Brian Pavlac

Game of Thrones Versus History; Written in Blood is a fairly self explanatory book for anyone who’s slightly a history buff. A collection of essays divided into sections draw parallels between families in game of thrones and real life history, … Continue reading

No Mud No Lotus: The art of transforming suffering | Thich Nhat Hanh

Thich Nhat Hanh is a Vietnamese Buddhist monk who lives in France. He’s a spiritual leader, activist, and writer of many books, including No Mud, No Lotus: The art of transforming suffering. I loved this book; it was beautifully written … Continue reading

Reading List ~ February and March 2018

  ** I am still reading the Right to be Cold and Beyond Words (half done). The links to those blog posts will become active as soon as those are done and posted, so if you’re reading this in early … Continue reading

Dragon Springs Road – Janie Chang

29938354.jpgSet in 1908 to about 1925, Dragon Springs Road by Janie Chang is about a young girl, Jailing, whose mother unexpectedly abandoned her on the estate of the family she worked for. She was taken in by that family and eventually educated in a mission school. She has a friend, or spirit guide of sorts, Fox, who is a fox spirit. Because Jailing is mixed race, she is considered an outsider by both the Chinese and Europeans, to the point that it makes it hard for her to find work despite her intelligence. She accidentally finds herself swept up in a political issue while she tries to find her mom and understand why she was abandoned.

I really enjoyed Dragon Springs Road. I was looking for a book that was written by an Asian author set in Asia and encompassing Asian culture. Check, check, and check. The fantastic elements found within the part of the story involving Fox were mixed nicely with the parts that thought about the tumultuous time in China as the country transition from being ruled by an emperor to a military government to something else (it’s communist now so…). The perception of Jailing being mixed race added another element worth some thought, especially since this novel is set at the end of the imperial time for England and other colonial forces, so the relationship between China + Chinese and British folks seemed plausible; the Brits seemed to be given a certain level of prestige that I don’t think would be granted today (not that it was deserved at the time).

Honestly, I don’t have a lot to say about Dragon Springs Road. It is one of those books that I really enjoyed and it fit a certain interest that I was looking to read about. I loved the fantasy with Fox, I loved the struggles that Jailing went through due to being mixed race and how she felt like she had to manipulate a man in order to get by only to later be accepted and fall in love honestly and earnestly with another man (she lives happily ever after), I loved the exposure to some of China’s political turmoil during the transition from empire to another government, and I liked the range of characters in the book.

I would definitely recommend the book, regardless of my wish to have some long winded thoughts not come through.

 

The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimalineo

The Marrow Thieves is set in a post apocalyptic future where indigenous people are being hunted for their brown marrow. Set sometime after 2050, indigenous people in Canada are on the run. It sounds like things were good for a … Continue reading

Books about Canada’s national parks and wildlife by George Mercer

George Mercer was a park warden for 3 decades and he has another book on the way, probably to be published this year some time (2018). He worked in a bunch of national parks across Canada; judging by the contents … Continue reading

The Red Queen by Philippa Gregory

The Red Queen by Philippa Gregory is one of the few novel she’s written that I haven’t read yet. The novel features Margaret Beaufort as the protagonist. Margaret Beaufort is the mother of King Henry VII (Tudor, father of the … Continue reading

Jasper Wild by George Mercer

Jasper Wild if the third book in George Mercer’s Dyed in the Green. Our main protagonist, Ben Matthew’s, and his girlfriend, Kate, who are both park wardens, have transferred from Wood Buffalo to Jasper National Park. In Jasper there are … Continue reading

The Last Tudor – Philippa Gregory

The Last Tudor is Philippa Gregory’s latest book published in 2017. Many of you will know who Jane Grey is; she was the granddaughter of Mary Tudor, one of Henry Tudor’s (King Henry VIII) sisters. Mary Tudor was queen of … Continue reading

The Hamilton Affair ~ Elizabeth Cobbs

The Hamilton Affair is a historical fiction novel written by Elizabeth Cobbs (P.S. she’s a historian). I managed to snag it while it was on sale and it was a rather pleasant read. My American history is kind of shoddy; … Continue reading

Gut by Guilia Enders

You are what you eat. Or at least your insides… and your outsides… are influenced. You should probably read Gut and find out for yourself. Our overall gut health really is super underrated from everything I learned in the course … Continue reading

Feminism and popular culture by Andi Zeisler 

I totally forget how I learned about Feminism and Pop Culture by Andi Zeisler; I listen to a lot of podcasts and ingest other forms are media that are feminist inclined. In any case, Feminism and Pop Culture was a … Continue reading

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

When Dimple Met Rishi is a book I learned about from the Harry Potter Alliance. The HPA hosts a book club and this was one of their recent books. The books is about the titular characters, Rishi and Dimple, who’s … Continue reading

Girl in the Woods: Aspen Matis 

On her second day of college, Aspen Matis was raped. Traumatized and unable to realize justice because the college let the guy get away with it, she struggled her way through her first year of college, depressed, isolated, ashamed. She … Continue reading

Dyed in the Green by George Mercer

Dyed in the Green is a mystery novel written by Canadian author and (former) park ranger, George Mercer, who turned to writing mysteries set in Canada’s national parks. The book was published in 2014 or so and George Mercer has … Continue reading

The White Queen by Philippa Gregory

The White Queen by Philipa Gregory follows Elizabeth Woodville who married King Edward Let me just say right off the bat that this book is situated during the last chunk of the War of the Roses. You practically need a … Continue reading

Lord of Shadows, The Dark Artifices 2 by Cassandra Clare 

Lord of Shadows is the second book in The Dark Artifices series by Cassandra Clare. Can I skip the summary? Yes, I suppose, since it’s my blog. Here is a summary if you want to know what the book is … Continue reading

Empress of a Thousand Skies by Shoda Belleza

Empress of a Thousand Skies is Shoda Belleza’s first young adult novel told from the POV of Aly and Rhee. Around 10 years before, Rhee’s family was killed. It was a spacecraft “accident” that someone arranged to get her family out … Continue reading

Turtles All the Way Down – John Green

“Every loss is unprecedented. You can’t ever know someone else’s hurt, not really — just like touching someone else’s body isn’t the same as having someone else’s body.” ~ somewhere in the book (yeah, I Googled the quote and THEY … Continue reading

Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher 

 Carrie Fisher, who famously portrayed Princess Leia in the Star Wars movies, is also an addict, lived with mental illness, a novelist, a mother, a daughter, and a performer (that’s a way of saying public speaker or comic if it’s … Continue reading

Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, book 3: THE SHIP OF THE DEAD by Rick Riordan

The Ship of the Dead is the third book in the Rick Riordan’s Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard series. It was just released on October 3, 2017, so it is brand new.  What happened? Loki escaped from his … Continue reading

“Prostitutes, Virgins and Mothers: Questioning teaching about Biblical women” by Dr. Paula Trimble-Familetti

Prostitutes, Virgins and Mothers: Questioning teachings about Biblical women by Dr. Paula Trimble Familetti was a very interesting read in my opinion. I got the title from Our Shared Bookshelf,  which is Emma Watson’s book club (Our Shared Bookshelf) — … Continue reading

The Birth House by Ami McKay

The Birth House by Ami McKay was recommended to me at a local bookstore. I can’t remember what the conversation was, but I think the extent of it was “historical fiction” “female protagonist” “thanks”. It was an amazing read and … Continue reading

It Ended Badly: 13 historical relationships 

To say your last relationship ended badly could easily be the biggest truth of life, I mean, I don’t know you so… But let’s talk about a book with some historically awful breakups. Some of these historical relationships ended so terribly … Continue reading

I AM MALALA: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai

I Am Malala is a book I read a while ago that I decided I would like to revisit. For those of you who do not know, Malala Yousafzai is possibly one of the most amazing girls around. Malala’s father … Continue reading

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

The Hate U Give is one of the best books I have read in a while. It is so significant and relevant to current issues that are being faced in the United States and around the world right now. In The Hate … Continue reading

The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller 

The Song of Achilles was such an amazing novel. I went in knowing very little – only that it was the story of Patroclus and Achilles told from Patroclus’ point of view. The book begins with Patroclus witnessing the Greek kings signing … Continue reading

The Trials of Apollo: Dark Prophecy (book 2) by Rick Riordan

The Trials of Apollo: The Dark Prophecy is the second book in one of Rick Riordan’s newest series, in which the god, Apollo, is cast down to earth as a mortal teenager as punishment for his indiscretions. Naturally, he experiences … Continue reading

The Chilbury Ladies Choir by Jennifer Ryan

The Chilbury Ladies Choir is a historical fiction novel by Jennifer Ryan. Set toward the beginning of the war, the women in the community of Chilbury are devastated that their choir is being shut down due to all the men … Continue reading

“Hunting Girls: Sexual violence from The Hunger Games to campus rape” by Kelly Oliver

Hunting Girls; Sexual violence from The Hunger Games to campus rape by Kelly Oliver is a book that discusses the relationship between the sexual between of campus rapes and popular culture phenomenons such as The Hunger Games, Divergent and Twilight. … Continue reading

Being Jazz by Jazz Jenning

Being Jazz was an amazing follow up read after The Harry Potter Alliance did Protego in the summer of 2016. Protego our campaign to promote trans rights and equality (you can Google it!). I think I might have heard about … Continue reading

Waiting for First Light: My ongoing battle with PTSD by Romeo Dallaire 

For those of you who don’t know, Roméo Dallaire is a Canadian who served in the army for a long time and was the commander of the UN peacekeeping mission in Rwanda during the genocide in 1994. He also served … Continue reading

Sorry Not Sorry; Dreams, Mistakes, and Growing Up by Naya Rivera

Naya Rivera is one of the actresses from Glee – she was Santana Lopez in the show. And now she’s written Sorry Not Sorry: Dreams, mistakes, and growing up, a memoir of moments in her life up to this point.  … Continue reading

The Lady of the Rivers by Philippa Gregory

The Lady of the Rivers by Phillipa Gregory  is about a woman named Jacquetta. She’s somone I’ve never heard of before I read the book. Jaquetta is a predecessor to most of the women centred around the Tudor era that … Continue reading

The Trial of Apollo: The Hidden Oracle (book 1) by Rick Riordan

The Trials of Apollo: The Hidden Oracle is the first book in Rick Riordan’s series where Apollo is the main character. After the last war in The Heroes of Olympus series, Apollo, the Greek god of the sun, music, poetry, … Continue reading

Beneath a Meth Moon by Jacqueline Woodson 

Beneath a Meth Moon is a relatively short and beautifully written novel about the horrors of meth addiction. I coincidentally decided to read the book at the same time that I was watching Breaking Bad. It’s 2 really different perspectives … Continue reading

Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Hammer of Thor (book 2) by Rick Riordan

Happy Valentine’s Day! On this day, whether you’re celebrating or not, I am bringing to you some of my thoughts from the book 2 of the Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard. Published on October 4, 2016, The Hammer … Continue reading

Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer (book 1) by Rick Riordan

Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer is the first book in Rick Riordan’s series about Norse mythology. I powered through the book over the last few days; it’s super good. Magnus Chase is the cousin … Continue reading