Saturday, 26 December 2020

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Review: Christmas: A Short History From Solstice to Santa by Andy Thomas

Christmas: A Short History From Solstice to Santa by Andy Thomas

Christmas: A Short History From Solstice to Santa by Andy Thomas


Published: 1st October 2019 | Publisher: Quarto Knows | Source: Gift
Goodreads

Have you ever wondered where Christmas comes from? Or why and how it has been celebrated throughout the centuries? This book takes you on an intriguing and entertaining journey through its social history.

Learn about the:
  • astrological associations
  • symbolism of the Nativity
  • excesses of the Roman festival of Saturnalia
  • Puritan ban of Christmas
  • Victorian-era revival
  • introduction and rise of gift-giving
  • origins and developments of Father Christmas
  • food and traditions from around the world
  • history of its stories, songs and symbols

Beautifully illustrated, this book tells the fuller story behind the sparkle and the merriment, and shows why Christmas has survived and still has meaning for us today.
From Quarto Knows.
Continue reading Review: Christmas: A Short History From Solstice to Santa by Andy Thomas

Thursday, 24 December 2020

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Review: Paris By Starlight by Robert Dinsdale

Paris By Starlight By Robert Dinsdale

Paris By Starlight by Robert Dinsdale


Published: 5th November 2020 | Publisher: Del Rey | Source: NetGalley
Robert Dinsdale's Website

Every city has its own magic...

Every night on their long journey to Paris from their troubled homeland, Levon’s grandmother has read to them from a very special book. Called The Nocturne, it is a book full of fairy stories and the heroic adventures of their people who generations before chose to live by starlight.

And with every story that Levon’s grandmother tells them in their new home, the desire to live as their ancestors did grows. And that is when the magic begins...

Nobody can explain why nocturnal water dogs start appearing at the heels of every citizen of Paris-by-Starlight like the loyal retainers they once were. There are suddenly night finches in the skies and the city is transforming: the Eiffel Tower lit up by strange ethereal flowers that drink in the light of the moon.

But not everyone in Paris is won over by the spectacle of Paris-by-Starlight. There are always those that fear the other, the unexplained, the strangers in our midst. How long can the magic of night rub up against the ordinariness of day? How long can two worlds occupy the same streets and squares before there is an outright war?
From Goodreads.

I received this eProof for free from Del Rey via NetGalley for the purposes of providing an honest review.
Continue reading Review: Paris By Starlight by Robert Dinsdale

Friday, 18 December 2020

Change is Ahead

 


What a year 2020 has been, huh? It's definitely been a bit of a wash out for Once Upon a Bookcase for various reasons - partly due to a lot of re-reading, and partly because I just couldn't face it. As the year draws to a close, I've started to reflect on what I want in the New Year generally, and I thought I would share what I'm thinking for the blog.

Continue reading Change is Ahead

Monday, 12 October 2020

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Review: The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow

The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow

This post contains Ad: Affiliate Links - marked with an asterisk (*) - which means if you make a purchase through them, I'll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow

Published: 13th Octover 2020 | Publisher: Orbit | Cover Designer: Lisa Marie Pompilio | Source: Publisher
Alix E. Harrow's Website

In 1893, there's no such thing as witches. There used to be, in the wild, dark days before the burnings began, but now witching is nothing but tidy charms and nursery rhymes. If the modern woman wants any measure of power, she must find it at the ballot box.

But when the Eastwood sisters--James Juniper, Agnes Amaranth, and Beatrice Belladonna--join the suffragists of New Salem, they begin to pursue the forgotten words and ways that might turn the women's movement into the witch's movement. Stalked by shadows and sickness, hunted by forces who will not suffer a witch to vote-and perhaps not even to live-the sisters will need to delve into the oldest magics, draw new alliances, and heal the bond between them if they want to survive.

There's no such thing as witches. But there will be.
From Goodreads.

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Goodreads

I received this eProof for free from Orbit via NetGalley for the purposes of providing an honest review.

Rep: Disabled protagonist; lesbian protagonist; Black, lesbian main character, trans woman secondary character, Native American secondary characters.

Continue reading Review: The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow

Monday, 5 October 2020

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Blog Tour: Deirdre Sullivan Introduces Savage Her Reply + Mini Interview

Savage Her Reply by Deirdre Sullivan on a black background with white and grey polka dots in circle patterns.

Deirdre Sullivan Introduces Savage Her Reply + Mini Interview


Titles marked with a (^) are ad: affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase through them, I'll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Titles marked with an asterisk (*) were gifted to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Savage Her Reply* by Deirdre Sullivan. It's a feminist retelling of the Irish legend The Children of Lir, from the persepctive of AĆ­fe, the story's villain. For us bloggers, this blog tour was arranged a little differently, and we got something super special. We were invited to an exclusive private Zoom meeting with Deirdre and publicist Nina, where Deirdre told us about Savage Her Reply, and we also got to ask her a few questions each, for our own exclusive element of our posts. Unfortunately, I was on holiday when the meeting took place, but it was recorded and Nina was kind enough to ask Deirdre my questions on my behalf.
Continue reading Blog Tour: Deirdre Sullivan Introduces Savage Her Reply + Mini Interview

Friday, 2 October 2020

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Review: Savage Her Reply by Deirdre Sullivan

Savage Her Reply by Deirdre Sullivan on a black background with white and grey polka dots in circle patterns.

This post contains Ad: Affiliate Link - marked with an asterisk (*) - which means if you make a purchase through them, I'll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Savage Her Reply by Deirdre Sullivan


Published: 1st October 2020 | Publisher: Little Island Books | Cover Designer and Illustrator: Karen Vaughan | Source: Review Copy
Deirdre Sullivan on Twitter

A dark, feminist retelling of the favourite Irish fairytale The Children of Lir told in Sullivan's hypnotic prose. Aife marries Lir, a king with four children by his previous wife. Jealous of his affection for his children, the witch Aife turns them into swans for 900 years. Retold through the voice of Aife, Savage Her Reply is unsettling and dark, feminist and fierce, yet nuanced in its exploration of the guilt of a complex character. Voiced in Sullivan's trademark rich, lyrical prose as developed in Tangleweed and Brine - the multiple award-winner which established Sullivan as the queen of witchy YA. Another dark & witchy feminist fairytale from the author of Tangleweed and Brine From Goodreads.

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Goodreads

I was sent this review copy for free by Little Island Books / Nina Douglas PR for the purposes of providing an honest review.

Continue reading Review: Savage Her Reply by Deirdre Sullivan

Monday, 28 September 2020

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Review: Witch by Finbar Hawkins

Witch by Finbar Hawkins

This post contains Ad: Affiliate Links - marked with an asterisk (*) - which means if you make a purchase through them, I'll receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Witch by Finbar Hawkins

Published: 1st October 2020 | Publisher: Head of Zeus | Cover Designer: Edward Bettison | Source: Publisher
Finbar Hawkins' on Twitter

Set in the 17th century, a breathtaking debut, and a potential prize-winner, about the power of women, witchcraft, fury, revenge and the ties that bind us.

After witnessing the brutal murder of her mother by witch-hunters, Evey vows to avenge her and track down the killers. Fury burns in her bright and strong. But she has promised her mother that she will keep Dill, her little sister, safe.

As the lust for blood and retribution rises to fever pitch, will Evey keep true to the bonds of sisterhood and to the magick that is her destiny?
From Goodreads.

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Goodreads

I was sent this proof for free by Head of Zeus for the purposes of providing an honest review.

Continue reading Review: Witch by Finbar Hawkins