Posted in book reviews

Beautiful Revolutionary by Laura Elizabeth Woollett

Beautiful Revolutionary by Laura Elizabeth WoollettBeautiful Revolutionary by Laura Elizabeth Woollett
Published by Scribe on July 30, 2018
ISBN: 1947534637
Genres: Historical Fiction
Pages: 416
Source: LibraryThing Early Reviewers Program
Goodreads
four-stars
Synopsis

The thrilling new novel inspired by Jim Jones’s Peoples Temple from the author of The Love of a Bad Man.

Following her conscientious-objector husband Lenny to the rural Eden of Evergreen Valley, California, Evelyn wants to be happy with their new life. Yet as the world is rocked by warfare and political assassinations, by racial discrimination and social upheaval, she finds herself disillusioned with Lenny’s passive ways — and anxious for a saviour.

Enter the Reverend Jim Jones, the dynamic leader of a revolutionary church called Peoples Temple. As Evelyn grows closer to Jones, her marriage is just the first casualty of his rise to power.

Meticulously researched, elegantly written, and utterly engrossing, Beautiful Revolutionary explores the allure of the real-life charismatic leader who would destroy so many. In masterful prose, Woollett painstakingly examines what happens when Evelyn is pulled into Jones' orbit — an orbit it would prove impossible for her to leave.

I received this book for free from LibraryThing Early Reviewers Program. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

I just finished reading “Beautiful Revolutionary” by Laura Elizabeth Woollett and it’s put me in a very weird mood. I don’t even know what to say about this book right now.

Before reading this fictionalized story about the events surrounding the Lyndens, Joneses, Peoples Temple and Jonestown, the only thing I really knew was that a bunch of people drank some poisoned generic Kool-Aid and died because their leader, Jim Jones, told them to.

After reading “Beautiful Revolutionary,” I feel oddly compelled to learn everything I can about these disturbing events and how so many people were led so far astray.

The book opens with the Lynden’s on their way to start a new chapter in their life. Newly out of college, newly married, and their dreams of a happy life fully possible. But Evelyn Lynden quickly grows tired of her housewife duties and her husband. Their lives take a dark turn when Evelyn, a minister’s daughter, takes them to Sunday service at Peoples Temple. It’s here where they, and so many others, meet and fall under the spell of Jim Jones.

Even knowing where the characters in this story would ultimately end up, I still found myself dumbfounded when I got to the end. I recommend “Beautiful Revolutionary” for anyone who has a fascination with cults, Jonestown, or who is just looking for a fascinating historical fiction novel.

Have you read “Beautiful Revolutionary” or have any thoughts about Jonestown or book recommendations based on this review? Leave me a comment below and thanks for visiting!

four-stars
Posted in book reviews, Tackle TBR Read-a-thon

2019 Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon Wrap Up

When I started this thing, I said I’d be okay with only getting one book finished… Unfortunately, I came up a few pages shy of even doing that!

So here are my final stats for the 2019 Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon hosted by Wishful Endings:

Pages read on days I havent already posted about:

Day 3: 41; Day 4: 69; Day 5: 50; Day 6: 50; Day 7: 24

Total Pages Read: 343

Total Books Finished: 0 😢

Oh well. I guess there’s always next year…

Posted in book reviews

Day #2 Update – 2019 Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon

I managed to read a little bit more yesterday than in Day 1 of the 2019 Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon hosted by Tess at Wishful Endings. Here are my stats at the end of Day 2:

Books Read:

Beautiful Revolutionary by Laura Elizabeth Woollett

This was the only book I read yesterday (other than some very short children’s books). I don’t actually know much about Jim Jones and his cult, but so far this story is amazing in a creepy sorta way.

Read-a-thon Totals as of Day 2:

Books Read Day #2: 1

Pages Read: 67

Total Books Read: 2

Total Pages Read: 109

Finished Books: 0

Posted in book reviews

Day #1 Update – 2019 Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon

So I’m trying really hard not to compare my first day of the Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon to last year, but I’m not succeeding! I currently have 4 kids under the age of 4 here so it’s silly to think I’ll be reading entire books every day… Yet my competitive nature still produces an inner voice that says I must constantly be improving and doing better than before. So I’m really struggling to just be happy with what I can do right now.

Because the idea that I should be anywhere near the page count I was at last year is a ridiculous lie.

The truth is, every page I get to read is a victory! So without further ado, the following is my Day 1 Update:

Books Read:

Beautiful Revolutionary by Laura Elizabeth Woollett

Pages Read: 28

The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

I hadn’t actually planned on reading The Wizard of Oz during the read-a-thon, but the kids found the copy My husband got me from The Folio Society for my birthday and they were obsessed with the pictures so I decided might as well read it to them! We got through 14 pages together.

Day 1 Totals:

Books Read: 2

Pages Read: 42

Total Books Read: 2

Total Pages Read: 42

Finished Books: 0

Posted in book reviews

And so it begins… The 2019 Tackle Your TBR Readathon

I’m so excited to announce I’ll be participating once again in the Tackle Your TBR Readathon hosted by Tess at Wishful Endings! Today is the first day and I’ve been reading Laura Elizabeth Woolett’s “Beautiful Revolutionary“. It’s a very interesting story inspired by the events at Jonestown in the 70s.

I REALLY need this right now! I’ll be posting more after the readathon is over about how much has been going on in my life in the past months, but it’s obvious from my blog that I haven’t had the opportunity to read or post as often as is usual for me. So I’m super excited to be using the readathon as a way to try to catch up a little – even if it turns out the “catching up” means I only finish one book!

I’ll be posting my progress from each day the morning after…so Day  one’s progress will be in a post tomorrow morning, Day Two’s on the 3rd day, etc…

Wish me luck and I pray for lots of extra reading time for all the other participants!

Posted in book reviews

Ultimate Blog Tour – Chasing Graves by Ben Galley

Hello, everyone!!! It’s my birthday AND Day 2 of the second ever Ultimate Blog Tour hosted by The Write Reads. This time around, the tour is even bigger and it’s spotlighting author Ben Galley. I chose to review the first book in his Chasing Graves Trilogy and I’m so excited to share this review as my birthday post with all of you!!!

Ultimate Blog Tour – Chasing Graves by Ben GalleyChasing Graves (The Chasing Graves Trilogy, #1) by Ben Galley
Published by BenGalley.com on December 7, 2018
Pages: 300
Source: The Write Reads
Goodreads
four-half-stars
Synopsis

Welcome to Araxes, where getting murdered is just the start of your problems.

"To say that the concept of Chasing Graves is grimdark would be an understatement... The world building is fantastic and reminiscent of Michael Moorcock’s Elric series.”– Grimdark Magazine

“Chasing Graves might well be one of the best releases not only for December but for the entirety of 2018.”– BookNest

“Galley has created a fascinating world that feels rife with stories… its history is rich with detail and there’s so many avenues to be explored.”– Adam Weller, Fantasy Book Review

“Dark, tense and surprisingly hilarious.”– Laura M. Hughes, Author of Danse Macabre

"With detailed characters, a twisting plot, and a heavy dose of gory darkness, Ben Galley has once again produced a fantasy you can sink your teeth into.”– The Grimmedian

“There’s serious grounds here for building something spectacular.”— Emma Davis, Fantasy Book Review

“A great first book to a series I sincerely can’t wait to complete.”– Novel Notions

————

Meet Caltro Basalt. He’s a master locksmith, a selfish bastard, and as of his first night in Araxes, stone cold dead.

They call it the City of Countless Souls, the colossal jewel of the Arctian Empire, and all it takes to be its ruler is to own more ghosts than any other. For in Araxes, the dead do not rest in peace in the afterlife, but live on as slaves for the rich.

While Caltro struggles to survive, those around him strive for the emperor’s throne in Araxes’ cutthroat game of power. The dead gods whisper from corpses, a soulstealer seeks to make a name for himself with the help of an ancient cult, a princess plots to purge the emperor from his armoured Sanctuary, and a murderer drags a body across the desert, intent on reaching Araxes no matter the cost.

Only one thing is certain in Araxes: death is just the beginning.

————

From award-winning author Ben Galley comes a new dark fantasy trilogy. Inspired by Egyptian mythology and packed with dark humour, action, and intrigue, the Chasing Graves Trilogy is perfect for fans of Michael Moorcock, Brandon Sanderson, Scott Lynch and Joe Abercrombie.

————

“Chasing Graves is a dark, compelling entry into a trilogy.”– RockStarlit Book Asylum

“I enjoyed this book immensely, there rarely ever being a moment when I felt ready to put it down before I finished it.”— Diogo Capelo, Goodreads Reviewer

"Chasing Graves, with its well paced and tight plot is complex, intricate and rewarding. I can’t wait to put my hands on the sequel.”– Lukasz P, Goodreads Reviewer

“The characters are fantastic, colourful and well-rounded.”– Al Burke

I received this book for free from The Write Reads. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

I’m used to stories where being among the undead is a good thing…like centuries old vampires. And I’m not really into zombie tales, but that chick in iZombie seemed to be alright.

But in chasing graves, the undead are basically slaves to the living in a city where the only way to get ahead is to kill or be killed so your murderer can claim not just your property, but your soul!

Basically, this is a totally different kind of undead story…

Your thrust into this world where a wife is crossing the desert with her dead husband’s ghost in order to bind him to her and claim his property. The woman’s name is Nilith and I absolutely loved her! (Actually, there weren’t many characters I didn’t love) I spent almost the entire book thinking what does this woman and her dead husband have to do with the rest of this story and when I got to the part where it told me I literally screamed out loud! I shouldn’t have questioned it though, because literally everything is tied together somehow in this book!

After the intro where you meet Nilith, you’re introduced to a thief who’s been lured to Araxes (the City of Countless Souls) with the promise of silver only to be murdered shortly after arriving. Caltro manages to get himself into all kinds of not so great situations with the living, the dead, and even some dead gods…

The world building in Chasing Graves is probably some of the best I’ve read in fantasy lately. There are even short snippets of history thrown in at the beginning of every chapter and I felt as though as I was reading about a real place.

There is SO much I want to talk about this book, but I have no idea how to say anything else without spoilers, so I’m just going to say I definitely recommend picking it up and giving it a read!

four-half-stars