Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Could Re-Read Forever

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These past two weeks have been crazy! I am in rehearsal for Guys and Dolls at The Fulton Theatre, so I haven’t had much reading or blogging time.  I didn’t have a chance to get a review out on Saturday, but hopefully I’ll be able to get back on track with this week’s Top Ten Tuesday from That Artsy Reader Girl: Books I Could Re-Read Forever!  I am not a big re-reader, but there are a select few books that I could read a million times.

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All of the Harry Potter books.  They’re really the only books I re-read, and I usually read them every year.  This year will be the 8th time I’ve read the series, and I never plan on stopping.


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Immediately after finishing this book, I knew that I would want to re-read it.  I’m sad that I read it as a library book and don’t own it.


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I love Shel Silverstein and his poems just make my heart happy.


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My favorite book of all time (Harry Potter not included).  I gave it to my boyfriend for Christmas last year, and I secretly would steal it to re-read some chapters.  I definitely need to give this one a full re-read soon.


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The Sookie Stackhouse series.  I have one book left, and I am not ready for it to be over… but I can tell you that I will definitely re-read this series.


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This book made me like classic literature, and I am definitely due for a re-read.  One of my favorites.


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These books just fill my soul up.  I love the characters so much.


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I just fell in love with this book.  It gave me a book hangover, and the feeling of love and hope it gave me, lets me know that I could re-read it over and over and it would still give me the same feelings.


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When Meg Cabot released Royal Wedding in 2015, I freaked out.  I was so excited to get back to Mia’s life.  This series makes me feel so warm and fuzzy, and I will never get tired of it.


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The theatre business kicks your butt, and this book always helps me to get back on track.


 

What are your favorite re-reads?  Let me know in the comments 🙂 Happy Top Ten Tuesday everybody!

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Broadway Book Chat

Broadway Book Chat: Synthia Link from Frozen on Broadway

Broadway Book Chat

As an actor, every job you do, you make a new family. There is something special about theatre and it’s ability to bring people together in a way that is unlike any other. I have made so many amazing friends throughout my career, and many of them share my love of books and literature. Since theatre brings stories to life, I thought I would feature some of my favorite performers (my fabulous friends and castmates) and see what their bookshelves look like! Welcome to my Broadway Book Chat!

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Synthia Link

Currently in Disney’s Frozen on Broadway
www.cookiestokale.com

instagram: @SynthiaLink

What are you currently reading?

I’m currently reading What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty. I really love her writing and the way she formats her novels. I can’t put it down!

What is your favorite book series?

Hands down Harry Potter. I’ve re-read them so many times and each time I’m totally absorbed in the story. I remember reading the first book and wishing that Hogwarts was real (but seriously, who doesn’t)

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Who is your favorite author?

I’ve got so many, but right now I’m loving Jeannette Walls.

What book inspires you and why?

I feel like we take a little bit of each book we read with us. My husband and I like to read Walt Whitman’s poetry from Leaves of Grass. We use his words to help us create music and spark our artistic sides. His poetry really inspires thoughtful and analytical conversation. I like to think each book leaves me with a new outlook.

If you could be friends with any of the characters you have played, who would it be and why?

I would definitely want to be friends with Inga from Young Frankenstein. She’shilarious and sweet and just genuinely loving.

What book would you like to see made into a movie/musical/play?

I think The Orphan Train by Steve Brigman would be an incredible play or film!
Also, Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides would make a really compelling film.

What is your favorite show you have been a part of so far and why?

This is a tough one. I would have to say Bullets Over Broadway. It was my third Broadway show and second original company. I remember going on as Ellen and being so overwhelmed with the audience response after her song “Found a New Baby”. There is NOTHING better than belting for your life, center stage, on Broadway.

What is the next book on your reading list?

Silver Star (Told you I loved Jeannette Walls).

What show are you working on now?

Currently I’m in Frozen!!! I’m in the ensemble. I can’t wait to share this gorgeous show with the world!!!!

Check out Synthia and the cast of Disney’s Frozen the Broadway Musical beginning previews TODAY at The St. James Theatre in NYC!

www.frozenthemusical.com

I will feature a new performer every month! I would love some suggestions for questions you would like to ask, or things you want to know!  Leave them in the comments and I will add them to future interviews! A million thanks to Synthia for sharing with us while preparing to open a new Broadway show! Best of luck to the whole cast and crew and congrats! ❤

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Am No Longer Interested in Reading

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Happy Top Ten Tuesday everyone! This week’s theme from That Artsy Reader Girl is “Books I Have Decided I Am No Longer Interested in Reading.”  This one was difficult for me, because I find it hard to let the idea of reading some books go, even though they don’t really interest me anymore.  I kept looking in my TBR for books to get rid of, and I would read the description and want to read it again.  BUT, I did it.  Here are 10 books that I am letting go from my TBR:

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I got about 200 pages into this one, and kinda fell out of it, and I honestly don’t have any intention of going back… still hard to admit that.


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I want to like F. Scott Fitzgerald.  I really do, but every time I have tried it is a struggle for me.  I got about half way and I just couldn’t do it any more.  I always planned to go back because I wanted to love it, but alas.


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I loved Kite Runner, but for some reason I just really don’t have any desire to read this one.


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There was a point in my life where I wanted to read all of the Nicholas Sparks books (didn’t we all), and after reading a couple, I realized that they’re not my favorite.  So this ones off the list.


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I think my friend recommended this one to me, but after reading its description again on good reads, it does not sound like something I’d like.


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I love the movie.  I love the musical.  That’s all I need.


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I’ve seen the movie and now that I know the twists, I don’t see the point.


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I hated Wicked a lot.  This sequel has been sitting in my closet for YEARS, and I’m never going to read it.


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I was so excited about this book when I found it, but after hearing my roommate complain the ENTIRE time he was reading it about how boring and hard it was to get through, I don’t want to read it anymore.  He now claims it was amazing…


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Same as Girl on the Train, I was forced to watch the movie with friends before I had read it, and while I’m sure the book is better, I know the twist so its pointless.

What books are you letting go of?  Did I make any mistakes in letting go some of your favorites? Let’s chat! 🙂

Book Reviews

Nature of the Witch by Helen T. Norwood Blog Tour

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Nature Of The Witch AMAZON LARGESummary: Many years ago, magic prevailed in Britain. It was a time when chosen women followed a path forged by Mother Nature herself; a time of witchcraft, of the brotherhood of the Gwithiaz and of the terrifying Creatures.

This has all passed from memory a long time ago. But now, magic has returned. Kiera is the first witch the world has seen in centuries, while Jack must learn the ways of the Gwithiaz. They must not only master their crafts, but also overcome their differences and work together if they are to survive the dark enemy that lurks in the shadows.

In the rugged Cornish landscape where it first began, the two face the dreaded Kasadow: an ancient evil that has awakened and is ready to destroy them, and their magic, once and for all.

*I received a copy of this book in turn for an honest review*

My Thoughts: I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  It starts off with a strong prologue, which does exactly what a prologue is supposed to do.  It gave us necessary information we needed to set up the story without oversharing for no reason, which I greatly appreciated.  The structure of the whole story is fast-paced, organized, and well thought out, but everything was a bit surface level.  However; I didn’t really mind.  We were always given enough information for everything to feel developed, I just wanted more.  I was fascinated by the concept of the witches and their Gwithiaz, and would have loved to really get into it, and their magic, with more detail.  The relationships didn’t feel super deep, but with the magic connection they were supposed to have, and the passing of time in the book, I bought it.  The plot was super engaging, and the ending killed me.  I thought I knew what was going to happen, but I was blind-sided like I haven’t been in a long time.  There came a point towards the end where I could not stop reading, and ended with my jaw on the floor.  I was torn on what star rating to give this one, but because the ending was so good I’m bumping it up to 4 stars.  I would definitely read on in this series, and am excited to see where it goes!

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Purchase Nature of the Witch

Win a signed copy of Nature of the Witch! (UK ONLY)

About the Author: Helen T. Norwood

Nature of the Witch - Author Pic (1)Helen lives in the UK with her husband, two children and one diva-like cat called Tiger. Helen, like many others, was captivated in her childhood by books from the likes of Roald Dahl and Enid Blyton and any books which took her to new worlds and showed her places of magic and mystery. She has enjoyed writing and creating her own magical worlds from a young age. She is currently writing the second book in the ‘Nature of the Witch’ trilogy which will be out soon.

Twitter: @ThinkFitFoodFam    Goodreads: Helen T. Norwood

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Thanks to Rachel’s Random Resources and Helen T. Norwood for including me in this Blog Tour! I had a blast, and can’t wait to see what is next for Kiera and Jack! Make sure you check out the rest of the tour and see what these other amazing bloggers have to share!

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Superlatives Book Tag

I have always loved Superlatives.  My senior year in high school, I was so excited to for vote for them for the year book.  I even won Most Likely to be Famous, which was really exciting 🙂 When I saw this Tag on Passionately Perusing, I knew I wanted to do it, and when I saw that she had tagged me, I was pumped! She has some really great answers too, so make sure you check out her blog!

Most likely to be in the movies: The book that would make the best movie:

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This book is already so cinematic, and I would LOVE to see it on screen.  I feel like it’s only a matter of time…

Biggest Drama King/Queen: The most overly dramatic book or character:

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Scarlett O’Hara.  I live for her.

Best Dressed: Book with the best cover:

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I just love how simply beautiful and effective this cover is.  It also does a really good job of representing the story.

Most Creative: The book with the most unique plot, characters, and structure:

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This book is just insanely brilliant.  I have never read anything like it.

Most Popular: The book with the most ratings on my Goodreads:

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This actually surprised me.  I expected a classic, or Harry Potter.

Most likely to Succeed: The book that is going to be appreciated for many years to come:

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It’s just the best.

Class Clown: The book that made you laugh out loud:

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The language in this book is just hilarious.  I loved the characters and the plot so much.

Most Improved: The book that started off slow, but really picked up:

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This book is one of my faves, but if my mom hadn’t told me to push through the first 100 pages, I probably would have given up… that beginning is SLOW.

The Cutest Couple: The cutest couple in a book:

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Franny and Haylin from Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman are my favorite couple at the moment.

Biggest Heart Breaker: The book that broke your heart:

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Sobbing, disgusting mess.

I tag anyone who loves Superlatives like me 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Literary Couples I Love to Love

 

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I love love.  I am a hopeless romantic, and love stories are my favorite.  This week’s theme from That Artsy Reader Girl is a love freebie to celebrate Valentine’s Day.  I decided to share 10 of the literary couples that I love to love

1. Feyre and Rhys from A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

2. Remus and Tonks from Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling

3. Jack and Aliena from The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

4. Jane and Mr. Rochester from Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

5. Baz and Simon from Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

6. Franny and Haylin from The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman

7. Mia and Michael from The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot

8. Jacob and Marlena from Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

9. Ayla and Jondalar from The Earth’s Children Series by Jean M. Auel

10. Jamie and Claire from Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

 

Who are your favorite literary couples? Let me know in the comments! Happy day of love everyone! ❤

 

 

Book Reviews

The Lonely Hearts Hotel by Heather O’Neill Review

30201327Goodreads Summary: With echoes of The Night Circus, a spellbinding story about two gifted orphans in love with each other since they can remember whose childhood talents allow them to rewrite their future.

The Lonely Hearts Hotel is a love story with the power of legend. An unparalleled tale of charismatic pianos, invisible dance partners, radicalized chorus girls, drug-addicted musicians, brooding clowns, and an underworld whose economy hinges on the price of a kiss. In a landscape like this, it takes great creative gifts to thwart one’s origins. It might also take true love.

Two babies are abandoned in a Montreal orphanage in the winter of 1910. Before long, their talents emerge: Pierrot is a piano prodigy; Rose lights up even the dreariest room with her dancing and comedy. As they travel around the city performing clown routines, the children fall in love with each other and dream up a plan for the most extraordinary and seductive circus show the world has ever seen.

Separated as teenagers, sent off to work as servants during the Great Depression, both descend into the city’s underworld, dabbling in sex, drugs and theft in order to survive. But when Rose and Pierrot finally reunite beneath the snowflakes after years of searching and desperate poverty the possibilities of their childhood dreams are renewed, and they’ll go to extreme lengths to make them come true. Soon, Rose, Pierrot and their troupe of clowns and chorus girls have hit New York, commanding the stage as well as the alleys, and neither the theater nor the underworld will ever look the same.

With her musical language and extravagantly realized world, Heather O’Neill enchants us with a novel so magical there is no escaping its spell.

My Thoughts:  This book was so different than I expected, and I still don’t really understand how I feel about it.  Right away, I loved the prose.  It was stunningly beautiful and poetic, but also very blunt, which I thought was such an interesting mixture.  I definitely understand the comparison to Night Circus.  They were completely different in content, but the vibe was similar.  Speaking of content… I was warned that this book was sexually explicit and usually that never bothers me at all, but I was not prepared for the large quantity of explicitness.  It almost felt like the entire story was sexual, or put into sexual terms, and a lot of the time I felt like it was in there for shock value.  I understand why it was included, and the importance of it to the character’s development, but I didn’t feel like it was necessary all the time.  I started to get annoyed with the frequency of it and it kind of turned me off to reading the book.  I felt like it overshadowed the rest of the story, which was very heart wrenching and beautiful.  The characters were extremely flawed, which I absolutely loved.  Rose in particular was a great character.  I loved her strength and resourcefulness, and also how unapologetically weird she was.  I didn’t like Pierrot as much, and often just pitied him, but it worked in context of their relationship.  The whole story is really tragic, but it’s also hopeful, even in its darkest moments, and that is what still haunts me.  While reading this book, I wasn’t even sure if I was enjoying it, but when it was over my heart hurt so much that I knew it had affected me more than I thought. I was torn between 3 and 4 stars for this one, but after the way I felt when it was over, I bumped it up to 4.

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Dreams Do Come True- Meeting My Favorite Author

On Tuesday night, I had the pleasure of attending one of my favorite author’s book signings and I almost peed my pants.  I have been a fan of Kristin Hannah since I was a freshman in high school, and discovered Firefly Lane with my best friend, Kaley.  After that book tore me to pieces, I devoured every Kristin Hannah book I could find, and she has consistently been one of the first authors I recommend to people in search of a good book.  The way she writes her characters is unparalleled for me, and I get more emotionally invested in her books than in any others.

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Hearing her talk about her process, and how she got started writing was super inspiring, and I could have listened to her talk about it forever.  When I was waiting in line for her to sign my book, I was so nervous to actually meet her, but she was so welcoming and open, and asked which book was my favorite.  I told her that I loved True Colors, and she was surprised and said that no one ever says that book!  I was trying not to geek out, but I was fangirling hard core, and my cheeks hurt from smiling so big the whole time.

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I can’t wait to read The Great Alone, especially after hearing what inspired it, and how it came to be.  I have yet to be disappointed by one of her books, so I have no doubt that I’ll love this one as well.

 

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Have Been on my TBR the Longest and I Still Haven’t Read

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Like all bookworms,  I have a disgustingly long To Be Read List.  Some of those books go back YEARS.  This week’s theme from That Artsy Reader Girl lets me share the books that have been on my TBR the longest and I still haven’t read.

The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo

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This is always the first book I think of when I think of overdue reads. This is the year I’m finally going to read it.


Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

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This book has been on my list since 2010, when my AP English teacher told me I would love it.  It has always intimidated me slightly, so I’ve put it off.


The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

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Of Mice and Men and East of Eden are two of my favorite books, and I’ve always meant to read Grapes of Wrath too, and for some reason it always gets lost in the shuffle.


Adored by Tilly Bagshawe

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I had a friend tell me I HAD to read this book ages ago! I was so excited about it, and somehow never got around to reading it… but I always remember that it’s still on my TBR.


Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

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My mom read this a long time ago, and I remember thinking “I need to read that book someday.” Well, it’s someday, and it’s still on my TBR…


The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling

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The first book my queen wrote after Harry Potter. I know. I still can’t believe I haven’t read this yet either… I was kind of turned off of it from hearing some mixed reviews, and I was afraid it would ruin the magic.


The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith

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Another book by the queen that I haven’t read.  This one I have heard amazing things about, and if my dad hadn’t lost my copy on vacation, I probably would have read this by now haha


Maneater by Gigi Levangie Grazer

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I have had this book on my shelf for over 10 years.


Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

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I have heard such amazing things about this book, and have been meaning to read this for so long.  There’s no excuse, except that it never seems to fit my mood reading tendencies.


The 13 1/2 Lives of Captain Bluebear by Walter Moers

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I have literally had this on my shelf since I turned 13… This might take the cake for the book on my TBR the longest.


What books have you had on your TBR’s forever? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

Book Reviews

The Oathing Stone by J.Z.N. McCauley ARC Review

31351222Goodreads Summary: Book Two of The Rituals Trilogy—Fire magic wraps around her bones and strengthens them, but if the fire touches another, it does more than burn.

After a year blissfully hidden together in a small village on Ireland’s lush green, Catherine and Bowen are ready to tie the knot. The joining of an ancient druid doctor and a woman blessed with druid magic from the sacred oak tree calls for nothing less than a traditional Celtic ceremony. For this, to connect them to their ancestors and the sacred place where they marry, a key item must be chosen for the ritual, the oathing stone.

Their need for discretion allows for only a gathering of Catherine’s closest friends and family. But after the couple’s first night together, strange and sudden events unfold. Blood mingles with fire, and Catherine’s magic becomes unstable.

Meanwhile, the mysterious Faerie Kings send a Fae spy to witness Catherine’s magic which disrupts not only her life but her best friend Bella’s when she becomes his sudden obsession. Just after Bella goes missing, it is up to Catherine to get her back, but it is only the beginning of their problems as she finds they’re embroiled in the middle of a Faerie civil war

*I was sent an ARC of this book from Book Review 22 in return for an honest review*

My Thoughts: This series looked so promising.  I’m a huge fantasy nut, so anything with magic, fairies, and Ireland sounds fantastic to me, and I couldn’t wait to read to read the first book, Oak and Mistletoe. It kills me to say that I was very disappointed, and had I not been asked to review book 2 in the trilogy, I probably would have DNF’d it.  Luckily, it was very fast paced and I was able to power through.  The plot was convoluted, I felt no connection to the characters whatsoever, and everything just felt underdeveloped.  Needless to say, I was not looking forward to reading The Oathing Stone.  While I still wasn’t the biggest fan, I was pleasantly surprised that the second book was a lot better than the first.  The plot actually made sense, and was able to hold my attention.  Things moved and escalated very quickly with a lot of ups and downs.  Being mostly set in the Fae realm, I felt like the author used their magic so that “anything goes,” without actually setting any rules to establish the system of magic.  I liked that we got to read from a few different perspectives, and I thought that they were handled well in advancing the plot.  The ending was a little strange, but exciting, and ends on a cliff hanger.  My biggest problem with this book, and the series in general so far, is that I feel nothing for the characters.  The situations they are put in are interesting, but the characters and relationships are very one dimensional and underdeveloped.  Catherine and Bowen are supposed to have such a great love, but there was no basis for it.  I really wanted to like this trilogy, but I just can’t get on board.

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