We got a lovely message from Amy Harmon, author of Running Barefoot, Slow Dance In Purgatory and Prom Nights in Purgatory yesterday. She wants everyone to know that one of her fantastic books, Slow Dance In Purgatory (previously reviewed right here thank you very much) is currently available for FREE as an e-book at Amazon.com. Click here to get it! Bubby and Sissy love, love, love this book – go get it!
This story is set at the Wright family’s small homestead Missalonghi, in the town of Byron in Australia’s Blue Mountains. Missy Wright is the stereotypical spinster daughter in this tale from the author of the Thorn Birds. Plain and shy, she cowers in the shadows of her pretty cousin Alicia and her domineering mother Drusilla. But it’s the 20th century and time for brave new thoughts and actions. Missy Wright is done with her wallflower days and is ready to change things for the better, no matter what anyone else might think. With the help of the beautiful, mysterious new librarian she sets her sights on an unsuspecting newcomer who just might be her prince charming.
Sissy: This is one of my favorite books of all time. I’m not sure why but it could be because I always love witty, bantering women. It could be because I love a fairy tale ending. It could be because I cheer when good women triumph over evil men (or just plain good triumphing over evil, period.) Maybe it’s the bit of magic or the touch of paranormal that is necessary in every good fairy tale. Whatever it is, I read it for the first time a million years ago and have read it many times since.
Bubby: So let me tell you about when Sissy introduced me to this book. At the time, we were attending a women’s book club together. We were each asked to bring our favorite book to one of the meetings. Sissy scandalized all these poor church ladies with her choice of The Ladies of Missalonghi. Just remembering it makes me laugh so hard I just snorted my Diet Coke out my nose and all over my shirt!
Sissy: What a bunch of prissy bottoms! (Sissy is wiping Coke spit off of her shoe as she speaks.) The book is as tame as rice pudding by today’s standards. Bubby, do you care to explain yourself?
Bubby: Yes, MOST of the book is perfectly appropriate. It’s just that one little bit – you remember, the part where she, well, you know, and she’s in the river and then what’s-his-name is there and she’s not quite deep enough and she’s showing some, well, bits and he tells her that if she stays much longer she won’t be a, um, “maiden” anymore? (Bubby is now blushing furiously.)
Sissy: Yes. Missy, who does not know any better, has this glorious moment when her heretofore unacclaimed flat chest becomes an object of interest. Yes, she should have married him before showing off her “nuptials” but there it is. Get over it, Bubby.
Bubby: You, madame, are just shameful. Shameful. That’s all there is to it. Actually it’s not that big of a deal. I just find it funny the way the incident is described, causing Sissy to become the outcast of the book club. I think they still refer to her as “that painted hussy.” I do appreciate this book, though. It is well written with a great storyline and plenty of surprises. My favorite moment is when Missy throws off the drab, outdated clothing that is all she’s ever been allowed to wear and steps out in a crimson red silk dress full of ruffles and embellishments. I’m gonna get me one of those red dresses some day.
Sissy: I have one. I wore it on Tuesday. With my tiara.
Bubby: (Looking at Sissy with a slightly alarmed expression) Oh, good. Did you take pictures so I can post them on Facebook?
Sissy: No. It was a private wearing.
Bubby: And there goes the rest of my Diet Coke. *Snort!*
Sissy: My favorite part of the book is the end. And what happens at the end, you ask? Let’s just say that the evil “suits” get what’s coming to them and the women reclaim their rightful place at the top of the food chain. I give it 5 bubbles just for nostalgia’s sake.
Bubby: Sometimes I think Sissy’s tiara is on too tight. Just saying. Or maybe she read this book during her “She-Woman Man-Haters” period. Not sure. Not sure I want to know. At any rate, it’s definitely worth reading. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry (o.k., probably not), you’ll cheer for the women! But it’s not my all time favorite. 3 1/2 bubbles. Be sure to check back next Friday for MY pick on Friday Favorites!
Click HERE to buy The Ladies of Missalonghi by Colleen McCullough at Amazon.com
Click HERE to buy The Ladies of Missalonghi by Colleen McCullough at BookDepository.com
© Bubble Bath Books 2012
We, the eminently knowledgeable and sophisticated staff here at Bubble Bath Books . . . O.K. There is no staff. No staph either. (That last gem was from Sissy, NOT Bubby. Just saying.) Where was I? Oh, yes. We, Bubby and Sissy, have decided that while we like to focus on newer releases in our reviews, that leaves out some of our old favorites. You know, the ones you go back to year after year because they are just THAT good. (We may have to translate some of Sissy’s picks from the original Egyptian scroll they were written on. She’s THAT old, you know). From now on, each Friday we will feature an oldie but goodie in a segment called “Friday Favorites.” (Sissy will make sure that Bubby isn’t allowed to choose the board books she still chews on!) Bubby and Sissy don’t always agree on what Friday favorites should be so Sissy threw a fit and decided she should get to choose first. We will alternate choosing a Favorite each week, starting, of course, with Sissy’s pick. Hope you enjoy!
You’ve grown up thinking that Robin Hood was a dashing, handsome young man in green. But what if he was really a she? Robin of Locksley is a headstrong young woman who is struggling to find her place in a male-dominated society when her father announces that she is to be married to the Sheriff of Nottingham. Unable to accept this fate, Robin rebels and tries to flee to the safety of London to seek aid from the King. Along the way she encounters deadly adventures and familiar characters and begins to make a life for herself among the trees of Sherwood Forest. Robin chooses to disguise herself as a boy and keeps isolated from the world until she rescues a young boy being beaten by the Sheriff’s soldiers. This incident marks the beginning of her role as leader of outlaws – soon to be known as “Robin’s Merry Men”. Robin’s endeavors to provide an honorable life for her people while, of course, stealing from the rich and giving to the poor make her beloved of the people, but enrage the Sheriff of Nottingham. She and her band are continually hunted by the Sheriff and his men, especially when she steals yet another prize from his grasp.Full of adventure and danger, bowmanship and daring robberies, companionship and romance, Robin: Lady of Legend is the exhilarating tale of the girl who became Robin Hood.
Stephen Leeds, AKA ‘Legion,’ is a man who has a unique mental condition. He is able to generate multiple personalities that he can see and interact with just as if they were real people in the room. Each of these personalities has a highly specialized skill set which Stephen uses to solve the many dilemmas he encounters. As the story begins, Stephen Leeds and his personalities are hired to search for Balubal Razon, a missing inventor of a camera that can actually take pictures of the past. Starting in America, the book takes you all the way to Jerusalem. Along the way, Legion discusses complex questions such as the mysterious abilities of the human mind, how time works and the nature of faith.
Bubby: This is a novella from renowned Sci Fi/Fantasy author Brandon Sanderson. It’s very short, only 88 pages, but well worth the $2.99 to get it as an e-book. I am constantly amazed at the diversity of Sanderson’s writing abilities. It’s amazing to think that this book came from the same mind that wrote the Mistborn series, finished Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series and also wrote the young adult series Alcatraz and the Evil Librarians.
Sissy: Clever Brandon Sanderson came up with a new twist on multiple personalities in fiction. If I had hallucinations I would certainly want them to be helpful and brilliant, as these are, and not entities that tell me to kill people or blow up public buildings and such. At present I would like to have a computer genius for my imaginary friend.
Bubby: I love how the book managed to be both amusing and thought-provoking. One of the main questions was how would hard knowledge affect one’s faith? It’s interesting to think about. I have many things that I believe that cannot be proven or disproven scientifically. How would my belief, for example, in Santa Claus, change if I could photographically prove that he exists?
Sissy: Oh how Bubby doth wax philosophic today! Methinks she needs to read a comedy next. As for Santa Claus, he is real, end of story.
Bubby: But didn’t it make you have deep thoughts, Sissy? Or am I assuming too much to believe that you still CAN have deep thoughts? I love the way that Stephen relates to his alter-egos. They have to have their own seats on the airplane, their own room at his mansion and each is so completely different from the other.
Sissy: There is also an interesting sub-plot going on in this book about Stephen’s long-lost love, Sandra, which leads me to hope this will turn into a full-length novel or series of novellas. I could go for a series of Nutellas right now, and yes, I am ignoring Bubby’s hurtful insinuations about my cognitive abilities (or lack thereof). Anyway, our author has linked the two plots with a delightful clue, and I can’t wait for further mysteries for Stephen to solve and more searches for the beloved Sandra.
Bubby: It would be wonderful if this was turned into a full length novel. I would pre-order that right now! I have hope that Brandon Sanderson is leaning that way because of the tantalizing little hints about the previous romance with Sandra. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see! I highly recommend all of Brandon Sanderson’s books – I own them all and they are all great. Legion gets 4 1/2 bubbles.
Sissy: Never read Sanderson before, but now I shall read more. It will not be a chore. (Bubby is grumbling in the background that this is not a Dr. Seuss blog and that I should not rhyme heretofore). I give Legion 4 solid bubbles (is that even possible?).