Teaser Tuesdays – September 9, 2014

NewOrleansTTTeaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading.

Anyone can participate.

If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at MizB’s Should Be Reading or on my Teaser Tuesdays Page.


A Free Man of Color
by Barbara Hambly


Gaslights were a new thing–when January had left in 1817 everything had been candlelit–and in the uneasy brilliance couples moved through the lower lobby and up the curving double flight of the main stair to the ballroom on the floor above. As a child January had been fascinated by this festival of masks, and years had not eroded its eerie charm; he felt as if he had stepped through into a dream of Shelley or Coleridge where everything was more vivid, more beautiful, soaked in a crystalline radiance, as if the walls of space and time, fact and fiction, had been softened, to admit those who never existed, or who were no more.


A Free Man of Color is the first book in Barbara Hambly‘s Benjamin January series. I’ve intended to try this series for a long time since I’ve enjoyed several books by Hambly, including her novelization of the original Beauty and the Beast television series. What always put me off is that I’m not fond of historical works in general. New Orleans has such a fascinating cultural history though that this finally decided me to give it a try. Hambly’s writing is so very rich and descriptive that it is easy to imagine myself there in the past.


Do you enjoy books set in the past or do you prefer to remain in the present? What are you reading now? Do you have a TT to share with us?

Please leave a comment with your link on MizB’s Teaser Tuesday post or below. If you don’t have a blog, you can share your Teaser here in the comment section instead.

41 comments on “Teaser Tuesdays – September 9, 2014

  1. w0rdtrix says:

    Excellent teaser, sounds like one to check out. I do like a good historical or classic on occasion, and have a classic myself this week: Emma


  2. Suzie Quint says:

    I love Barbara Hambly. She’s my all-time favorite author.

    My teaser is at http://suziequint.blogspot.com/2014/09/tuesday-teaserfirst-paragraph-governess.html

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I mostly enjoy books from the present, or the future. But I like the language of this teaser, very cool pick!
    My Teaser.


  4. FictionFan says:

    I’ve never read any of her books but I love that teaser. I look forward to your review…


  5. The premise of the story seems to have a lot of depth. It’s been a while since I’ve read a book with a lot of depth to it; actually, I think I may be reading one right now! Thanks for sharing


  6. Fred Runk says:

    Madame Vauquer,

    It’s hard to say. I thoroughly enjoy 19th century works, but I generally avoid historical novels or those written in the present but set in the past. The exception would be mysteries set in the past, for those I do enjoy.

    At present I’m reading a collection of short stories by Lu Hsun or Lu Xun, who, according to the information I found, is considered to be the most important Chinese writer of the 20th century and the founder of modern Chinese literature.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s just like me, Fred. As you know, I’m always reading something from the 19th Century–sometimes two at once, lol. I think one thing that puts me off about historical novels is the subject matter. I don’t care to read about royalty or war very often. I enjoy the “common” people. Mysteries in the past–I loved Ellis Peters’ Brother Cadfael series.


      • Fred Runk says:

        Madame Vauquer,

        The Brother Cadfael series is what got me interested in historical mysteries. Some of my favorites are

        Steven Saylor’s Gordianus the Finder (Rome, approximately 87? BC and the latest takes place while Julius Caesar rules Rome.) The next one may deal with his assassination. He’s a PI.

        Michael Gregorio’s Hanno Steffeniis (Prussia, early 19th century, during the Napoleonic Wars), he’s an investigating magistrate

        Bernard Knight’s Crowner John (England about 100 years after Brother Cadfael–Richard the Lion-Hearted is king now), first appearance of the coroner

        C. J Sansom’s Matthew Shardlake (set during the reign of Henry VIII) a lawyer


      • Thanks for the tips, Fred! Saylor’s name seems very familiar, but looking at the list, I don’t think I’ve read any of them. Someone else just mentioned Sansom’s Shardlake series too. I used to read Margaret Frazer’s Sister Frevisse series, the earlier ones. Then I sort of fell away from them, not sure why.


  7. Great teaser. I like historical books now and then, but mostly I like YA present. Here is my TT http://cynthiastacey.com/2014/09/09/teaser-tuesday-sept-9/


  8. I do like historical books and particularly those set in the 19 century onwards, like the mention of gaslights in the teaser here. Thanks for visiting my TT http://cleopatralovesbooks.wordpress.com/2014/09/09/tuesday-teaser-september-9/

    Liked by 1 person

    • I had a hard time decided whether to go with this teaser or an action one where January wonders who the woman is and how she knew his name. Hambly is so great with descriptions that I went with that. Glad you liked it. Thanks for leaving your link.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. missdarcy87 says:

    This book sounds intriguing. I’ve never heard of her before. Here is my Teaser: http://darcysbookblog.wordpress.com/2014/09/09/teaser-tuesday-sept-9/


  10. pd workman says:

    Lots of mood.

    My excerpt today from a soon-to-be-published young adult novel:



  11. alexiscollins says:

    Love your teaser! I love the writing style and vibe.
    Thanks for visiting my Teaser Tuesday 🙂


  12. I love a mix of both but Historical Fiction is my fav – as it brings the past to life!
    Thanks for stopping by my teaser today too!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. fuonlyknew says:

    I don’t normally read books set this far back in the past. I do love New Orleans though and like the characters name. This I’d read. Good tease. And thanks so much for stopping by my blog.

    Liked by 1 person

    • New Orleans was a hook for me too. I’ve enjoyed other books set there. I have fond memories of visits when I was a child and had some relatives living there at the time. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.


  14. I’ve been curious about this book, and your Teaser makes me want to read it right now. I enjoy books set in the past, present, and future, depending on the story.
    Here’s the link to my Tuesday post: Retirement Can Be Murder.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Leslie says:

    Oh, now that’s an interesting teaser! I have never read anything by this author. Might have to add it to the TBR list! Thanks for stopping by my TT! 🙂


  16. yvonne473 says:

    This sounds interesting.


  17. writenote1 says:

    I think it sounds interesting as well. I do like historical fiction, but I need to balance it with a good amount of contemp fiction.


  18. pagesandtea says:

    What a great teaser! I love the atmosphere created in those few lines. Hope you enjoy the book.


  19. Deasy says:

    I hope you will enjoy this book like another of Ms. Hambly’s works.
    Thanks for stopping by and have a great week! 🙂


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