Monthly Archives: October 2021

A Breath is all you need, sometimes

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Have you ever felt not quite right in your own skin? What about in your family or community? I struggle with those kinds of feelings all the time. I have not reconciled myself with how I look (fat) or how I feel (fat and slow) or how I think other people see me. It is not a comfortable situation, ever. Basically, I have zero self-confidence about my looks. I love the way that I am…my personality and how I interact with people. I’m kind (most of the time, just don’t piss me off online…), I’m funny, I’m smart (unless you give me a math problem then, I’ll freak out), I care about other people. I wish that I could have the confidence of some of the fictional characters I’ve met over the years. When the negative thought bombard me, sometimes, I close my eyes, breathe in and out slowly and count the good things about myself. Just breathe… The main character in my latest awesome read is one such person.

Juliet is from a predominantly Puerto Rican neighborhood in the Bronx. She’s short and thick and sassy and…gay. She’s been in a relationship with her college roommate her family thinks is just her bff. She is an amazing writer and an avid reader. Her latest obsession is the Pussy book by famed author Harlowe Brisbane, the guru for all things female and gay. In response to the book, she wrote a long, passionate letter to the author in hopes of becoming her research assistant for the summer. It worked, she was on her way to Portland…a think, brown-skinned girl from the Bronx! It’s all hippies, weed, crystals, and a whole, unfamiliar vocabulary describing gayness that makes her feel out of place. Still, Harlowe is amazing…right up until she isn’t. The fallout from her betrayal leads Juliet to question everything about herself, her family, her girlfriend, and what it means to be a gay woman.

Whether you are a gay woman or not, we can all learn much about who we are and what we stand for from Juliet! Kudos to author Gabby Rivera for writing such a powerful, funny, beautiful character! We need more like her.

Endings…

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If you have followed me for a while, you know that Juliet Marillier is one of my favorite authors. Her characters are complex, intense, and magical. I’ve read every book she’s written and have loved all of them. A while ago, after finishing her Blackthorn and Grim trilogy, I emailed her asking if she was going to come out with any more in that series. Miraculously, she answered my email and…sadly, the answer was no. However, she did tell me that she was working on a series that involved those to beloved characters and that it would complete their story. That series is The Warrior Bards and it was spectacular and she was right, it did tie up all the loose ends quite nicely. That said, I have now read all three books and am bereft at that fact. I REALLY tried to read slowly and to only read while I ate lunch but the book was just too good so, SIGH, I finished it far too quickly. Anyway, If you’re looking for a fabulous series to take you away to fantastical places but with a firm foot in reality, look no further than The Warrior Bards.

Harp of Kings

A Dance With Fate – Liobhan is adrift. Her brother, Brocc, has joined the Otherworld, a place neither can pass into or out of easily. She returns to Swan Island to resume her training. Fate, it seems, is not done with her yet and tosses another tragedy her way. During a training bout with Dau, he sustains a devastating injury which leaves him blind. Dau is despondent at the possibility of having to return home, a place of horror for him. As a result of her part in his injury, Dau’s family asks that Liobhan accompany Dau to his estate for a full year.

There are dark secrets at the heart of Oakhill and Dau is caught in the middle of them. Together, they unearth the evil that has infested the place and make themselves a target for it. Liobhan must find a way to help Dau see through his disability or they might not survive.

Song of Flight – The Prince of Dalraida has gone missing in a violent kidnapping where his guard and most trusted friend, Galen, was badly injured by both human and Crow Folk assailants. News comes to Swan Island quickly and a team is sent out but without Liobhan. In the Otherworld, Brocc has run afoul of his wife because of his work with the Crow Folk and now, he and his daughter, not yet two, are cast out into the world where he falls into the hands of Due to unforeseen circumstances, Liobhan is now called out on a mission to save him. As they travel, stories reach them that indicate that the two missions are related. Both missions are perilous and the lives of so many hang in the balance.