Book Review: The Far Pavilions

Hello Everyone,

Not the best cover but not the worst!

Book Title: The Far Pavilions

Author: MM Kaye

Series: Book One of Two

Genre: Adult Fiction, Historical, Adventure, Romance

Publisher: St. Martins Press

Page Count: 1000

Goodreads Summary:

A magnificent romantic/historical/adventure novel set in India at the time of mutiny. The Far Pavilions is a story of 19th Century India, when the thin patina of English rule held down dangerously turbulent undercurrents. It is a story about and English man – Ashton Pelham-Martyn – brought up as a Hindu and his passionate, but dangerous love for an Indian princess. It’s a story of divided loyalties, of tender camaraderie, of greedy imperialism and of the clash between east and west. To the burning plains and snow-capped mountains of this great, humming continent, M.M. Kaye brings her quite exceptional gift of immediacy and meticulous historical accuracy, plus her insight into the human heart.

My Thoughts:

This book took me a solid week to read! Long winded, lots going on, a bit sexist here and there but those were the times, and I felt as though I would never finish reading this book. I learned there’s a part two. I’m not sure I’m going to read that, lol.

My Review:

This book was a struggle for me right from the start. While I was liking the adventure and the characters, it felt as though it went on and on and on. A 1000 pages of epic adventure, romance, and historical fiction at its best. While people adored Gone With The Wind this was the epic I wanted! The writing was lush, beautiful, and detailed.

I know a lot of newer book reviewers might not be enthusiastic about reading this 1000+ page time, but I’m insisting that it’s worth it! The ending is bittersweet, and the characters and setting will sweep you away. From India to England there’s something new to devour from each page.

The story starts with a premature baby being born in winter and the mother dying due to her not used to the fiercely cold winds. The story expands. It touches to n war. Cholera takes the baby-main character-father and uncle’s lives. More are lost. Travels are had.

This book does have it’s horribly sexist moments. While it’s a relic of the time it’s set in, there are certain things that are hugely sexist in the book. There’s dry spells here and there when it feels like nothing happened. And the ending was a slow burn that felt bittersweet; exactly as those on Google and Goodreads both have stated.

I feel as though this, while a hefty tome, is well worth the effort in reading. Especially if you’re a fan of Gone With The Wind and Outlander. This is equally as huge and well written as the pair.

My Rating:

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

Start of a Series Book Review: Into the Wilderness

Book One

Into the Wilderness by Sara Donatti. This is described as a ambitious sequel to one of my favorite classics The Last of the Mohiacns, though you don’t need to read that to read this. Written back in 1998, after Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, this is one of my top five historical fiction romance books. Unlike Outlander, this doesn’t feature a time travel element, however it is directly linked to the series, as within the halfway point of book one, Clair Fraiser is outright mentioned for at least six pages as ‘the White Witch’. Its a nod to one of the biggest romance series of all time, that’s so well known it became a hit series on Hulu a few years back.

The story begins with Elizabeth, a spinster wishing to teach school in Paradise. But there’s problems. For one thing, her family is cash poor thanks to her brother’s gambling debts. For another, her father-the Judge-wishes her to marry Dr. Richard Todd. But she’s firm in remaining a spinster…until she meets Nathanial Bonner, direct descendant of Daniel (Dan’l) Boone. She is wary around him, unsure of what to expect of him-or this new land so rife with both bounty and troubles. Slavery is still legal. No one’s at first eager for a schoolmarm, worried more about cost and that what she teaches will not be useful to the students, apart from math or geography, reading or writing. She fights for her school, as well as her freedom in not to marry.

There’s lots of other problems scattered throughout the book. Someone attempting to run Nathanial and his people off of Lake in the Clouds, as they don’t want Indians on their territory. Rougher weather than usual settling in. A dangerous threat looming. And the potential for marriage in Elizabeth’s future, despite her wishes being made clear to her father. She struggles to grow used to her new home in Paradise, while the people struggle with the fact she’s not the spoiled princess they thought she’d be.

The story spans eight hundred plus pages, and evolves for at least six more books. I’d read book one at least ten times throughout the last fifteen years, and I’m still drawn in to the whole of it. Its one of my most favorite historical romances that I’d read in my life, and I am sincerely hoping it gets its own television series being linked with Outlander so. I cannot rate this highly enough, if you want fiction with depth, history, and romance as well as adventure, then I recommend picking up this book. You won’t regret doing so.

Final Rating: 6/5 stars

Book Review: Hitting Black Ice

Hitting Black Ice

Title: Hitting Black Ice
Author: Heloise West
Series: Book 1
Genre: Adult Fiction, Romance, LGBT
Page Count: 200
Publisher: NineStar Press
Type of Book: Arc, Kindle Ebook
Received: Netgalley, Publisher
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: High action, lots of romance, and plenty of thrills.

This is one of those rare Netgalley arcs that I requested because it sounded like exactly what I wanted to read, got it within two hours, and then finished it three hours later. It left the book hanging wide open for a sequel, but I fell hard for Shawn and Hunter. Both young men were involved in a high stakes hostage situation, an mysterious FBI guy chasing after Shawn, guns, shootings, and more dangerous scenarios taking place in the snowy mountains during blizzard like conditions. Exactly what I wanted to read.

The only reason it’s four stars was because it left it hanging on a cliffhanger. Sigh. I very much need book two, and I am now invested in this series. The author immediately soared to my top ten favorite LGBT authors.

This made me think very strongly of the survival stories of Stargate Atlantis fanfiction that I used to read in a way, with lots of plot, romance, and characters. I very much enjoyed this and eagerly look forward to book two. Overall, I’m giving this 4/5 stars, and I’m hopeful book two will be out as quickly as possible. I especially liked the dogs that were thrown into the plot for good measure and the heroic rescue at the end. Highly recommended for those who enjoy fast paced action with lots of twists and turns!

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book

ARC Book Review: A Scandal in Battersea

A Scandal in Battersea

Title: A Scandal in Battlesea
Author: Mercedes Lackey
Series: The Elemental Masters, Book 12
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: DAW
Page Count: 300
Type of Book: ARC, Paperback
Review Word Count: 500
Rated: 4/5 stars
Notes: I haven’t read any of the rest of the elemental master series, but that doesn’t matter, because it’s reminiscent of Sherlock Holmes, so of course I had to read it. I *have* however, almost all of Mercedes Lackey’s books sitting on my shelves, so am a tremendous fan of hers. The Elemental Masters series is one my younger sister reads, and this is completely new to me but I plan on reading the others of this series soon.
I found this book to be most intriguing, mainly due to the Sherlock Holmes characters. I definitely enjoyed it, due to the more magical elements, and I liked reading Alexandre’s parts best, though I enjoyed all the characters overall. I did find the ending to be a bit rushed, and I was unsatisfied with how the author handled Alexandre’s last scenes, but aside from that I really liked it. It wasn’t as good as her Bardic Voices series, or perhaps her Joust series, but it was a fine a way to pass the time for a few hours regardless.

I’ve read Mercedes Lackey ever since I was about thirteen, when I first began diving into the fantasy genre after having read Lord of the Rings and the Wheel of Time. This was refreshing, with its promotion of LGBT characters, fascinating world-building schemes, and magical elements, I was hooked by this author for years to come. Granted, I hadn’t read much of her books lately, aside from the new arcs that I have received: The Hills Have Spies, along with another book too that I forget the name of…

But I digress.

This gave several nods to the BBC series of Sherlock, or so I thought. Including the ‘cabbie’, who picked up victims, Mycroft Holmes appearing just at the end of the book, and various other little nods that I rather enjoyed. I found that the author did a good job in paying homage to Sherlock, and loved the scene where he was infuriated about having magic countered against him, thinking it wasn’t fair, and considered it cheating.

My only real complaints were how she’d handled Alexandre’s untimely end, and how the ending itself felt rather rushed, which is why the book is getting 4/5 stars. Otherwise, I’m sure fans of Mercedes Lackey will definitely enjoy this new release of hers.

Until next time,
-Pass Me That Book.

Book Spotlight: The King’s Daughter Trilogy

BookSpotlight

Welcome to another Book Spotlight! This one comes with art from a trilogy that I was provided by the author! I plan on reading these very soon, once I thin down some of my other arcs, as I’ve gotten quite a few with release dates that I desperately need to read! Alas, schedules can be quite challenging, as I’m beginning to find out!

This is not the first trilogy done by the author. She’s also written the Golden City trilogy, which I adored, and the Overseer series which is also waiting to be read. She’s written numerous short stories, as well as regular novels. Who is ‘she’ you might ask? Well, she is Jeanette Kathleen Cheney, and she is a talented writer as well as one of my favorite fantasy authors!

For those who have never read this author, I highly recommend it. Not only does she write strong relatable characters, but her fantasy worlds are definitely unique and entertaining!

You can find her series here:

Goodreads: The King’s Daughter Trilogy

Facebook: Jeanette Kathleen Cheney

Amazon: The Amiestrin Gambit

{Hint: it’s only 4.99 currently on Amazon for book one! Also, if the links don’t work, please let me know, as I’m rather new to linking things. Thank you!}

This is on my top ten list to get to in the near future and I greatly look forward to it! I hope to have perked your interest as well!

That’s all for now, however, and I’m off to go read some of those ARCs that I just mentioned!

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book.

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