“Dreams are for mortals.” “Why?” “Because they must die.”// Review of “Gods of Jade and Shadow” by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Title: Gods of Jade and Shadow
Author: Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Genre: Historical fantasy
Intended audience: Adult
Date Read: 22/08/19 – 16/09/19
Rating: ★★★★★

Review:

This is one of those books that I completely loved in spite of having a few quibbles with it. It has a beautiful, poetic style that deserves to be absorbed all in one sitting, rather than the dribs and drabs I read it in. I loved it anyway, but I did read it at the wrong time.

Moreno-Garcia really captures the atmosphere of 1920s Mexico. I felt like I was there. The haircuts and the architecture and the dances they did, it was all there.

I really loved both Casiopea and Hun-Kamé and I enjoyed watching their relationship develop. I wasn’t really sure which direction it was going to take at the end – a happy ending seemed unlikely but I was maybe secretly hoping a bit. In the end, I think their story ends the only way it can, and I can assure you, I definitely smiled as I read the final pages.

did feel sometimes that the battles were won quite easily. The main characters got the upper-hand and immediately their foes just handed over the prizes… but in a way, I felt that added to the mythological feel, and the way the prose is written to make you feel like you’re listening to a story being told to you by someone who had it told to them… So after it’s been passed down a few times it’s just “look, this thing happened, don’t question it. that’s the way the story goes.”

I have no idea if I’m making any sense…

Anyway, read this book for atmospheric, slow-burn romantic, poetic historical fantasy. It won’t disappoint.


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WWW Wednesday – 18 September 2019

It’s time for WWW Wednesday! This blog hop is hosted by Sam over at A World Of Words. Link up with us by commenting on Sam’s post for this week, and just answer the three questions.

I’m trying to get back into blogging this week! We came back from overseas and immediately had to organise moving house, which was an event. We now everything in the new place, though we’re yet to unpack most of it. Everything is in piles in the living room!

All this is to say is that I feel like I haven’t had a lot of time for reading and even when I’ve had time, I’ve felt too tired. But when I sat down to write this post, I realised I’ve finished four books so ffar this month, and that’s pretty much on par with my usual reading pace.  And I feel that this week I have pulled out of my reading slump, so hopefully I’ll be speeding through some great books from here on out.

What have you recently finished reading?

The first thing I finished since my last post was The Women in Black by Madeleine St. John, a book that is considered something of an Australian classic. I really enjoyed this slice-of-life, peering into the lives of several different women in late 1950s Sydney. Here’s my review.

After that I listened to Jeff Wayne’s The War of the Worlds: The Musical Drama, which… isn’t really an audio book, more of a musical full cast dramatisation, but it has a listing on GoodReads, so I’ll take it. I’m a fan of Jeff Wayne’s original 100 minute War of the Worlds album from the 70s, so at first I wasn’t sure about this, but I ended up loving it, even without the songs.

Next up, I’ve read Evangeline and the Alchemist and Evangeline and the Bunyip, the first two novellas in the Antics of Evangeline series by Madeleine D’Este. These are entertaining, though I wish there was some more fleshing out of Evangeline’s back story. No reviews yet because I’m going to review the series as a whole when I’ve finished it.

And then there was my favourite book so far this month, Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia. It’s a hard book to describe, but it is a book that deserves to be read all in one sitting, rather than the dribs and drabs over a month that I read it in. It’s folklore-y and fairytale-y and that’s the only way I know how to describe it.

Other reviews I’ve posted since my last WWW:

What are you currently reading?

I started Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers: Monstrosity, Patriarchy, and the Fear of Female Power by Sady Doyle, which examines depictions of women in such things as horror movies and true crime fandom. At first, I wasn’t sure I would make it through the first chapter, since apparently even descriptions of The Exorcist  are enough to creep me out and have me walking around my own house with my back to the wall. But I’m a few chapters in now and I think I can cope with most of the horror content.

left Dead Blondes… at work yesterday and needed something to read at home last night so I started my other library book, Suicide Club by Rachel Heng. I guess you’d call this a dystopia, but it’s set in a recognisable not-too-distant future America where bodily enhancements mean immortality is within humanity’s reach… but at what cost?

Last but not least, I am listening to Scratchman by Tom Baker and James Goss. It’s also narrated by Tom Baker, which is perfect. I haven’t read any DW books in a while, and most of the ones I have read recently have been 10th or 11th Doctor-era. So this has been fun.

What do you think you will read next?

I will probably return to Madeleine D’Este’s books and read Evangeline and the Spiritualist next.

What are you reading this week? 🙂

 

 

 

WWW Wednesday – 21 August 2019

It’s time for WWW Wednesday! This blog hop is hosted by Sam over at A World Of Words. Link up with us by commenting on Sam’s post for this week, and just answer the three questions.

Due to illness, other commitments and then a three-week overseas holiday, it’s been over a month since I last did a WWW post. July wasn’t much of a reading month but I’ve been making up for that in August so here is everything I’ve read since mid-July.

What have you recently finished reading?

Cupid’s Match by Lauren Palphreyman, which did take some rather large liberties with Greek and Roman mythology (what has Pandora got to do with the Seven Deadly Sins, a Christian construct, for example?) but it was kind of fun regardless.I gave it three stars and reviewed it here.

Mother Tongue by Julie Mayhew took me a while to get through. It’s written in a very disconnected style and it didn’t really go anywhere? Here’s my review.

I stood in a second-hand shop in New York City and read The Book With No Pictures by B. J. Novak. My partner had told me about it before so I was interested to finally see it. It was quite funny. I can imagine kids loving it.

Small Spaces by Katherine Arden was next. It took me a while to get through. It’s a MG and I guess I wasn’t the target audience really. I was hoping I would find it creepier than I did. I did find the narrator’s voice a bit grating, which didn’t help.

I finished Cleaning House by Jeanne G’fellers the following day. I loved the basis in Appalachian folklore but I found the narrative itself a little too repetitive. But if you like quiet, character-driven folklore-y/witchy stories, then this is definitely for you. Here’s my review.

Next I read Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman and… wasn’t that impressed? I mean, I gave it three stars. But the way everyone talks about it, I was expecting to give it five. And I honestly thought at the start that I would, because the start is great. But then it got to dragging. Anyway, I have a full review scheduled, so keep an eye out for that.

For something completely different, I followed that with Women of Wasps and War by Madeleine D’Este, which was un-put-down-able gritty feminist fantasy and my favourite book so far this month.

Finally, I finished A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle, which was okay, but I was definitely skimming by the end. I know a lot of people love it but I think a lot of those same people read this as children, which I think would make the difference.

I also posted reviews of Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray and The Nowhere Emporium by Ross McKenzie since my last post.

What are you currently reading?

I only just finished A Wrinkle In Time this evening, so I haven’t started a new book yet.

What do you think you will read next?

I have The Horse and His Boy by C. S. Lewis audio book  to put on my phone. And I really want to start Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Morena-Garcia. I’m getting behind on my Australian Women Writers Challenge, though, so that also needs to be a priority.

What are you reading this week? 🙂