Graveyard Dust by Barbara Hambly

Graveyard Dust
(Benjamin January #3)
by Barbara Hambly

GraveyardDust

*

FirstChapFirstPara

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

African drums in darkness sullen as tar.

Rossini’s “Di tanti palpit” unspooling like golden ribbon from the ballroom’s open windows.

Church bells and thunder.

Benjamin January flexed his aching sholders and thought, Rain coming. Leaning on the corner of Colonel Pritchard’s ostentatious house, he could smell the sharp scent in the hot weight of the night, hear the shift in the feverish tempo of the crickets and the frogs. The dim orange glow of an oil lamp fell through the servants’ door beside him, tipping the weeds beyond the edge of the yard with fire.

*

TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

Given the trouble his curiosity had caused him in the past, January reflected that he should know better. In any case, he had a good idea of what he would find in the darkness where the trees got thick.

*

Barbara Hambly definitely has a way with words. She also seems to write in multiple genres. This series, historical mysteries, is set in 1830s New Orleans. The first book I remember reading by her is Ishmael, a Star Trek novel featuring Spock (my favorite!). I read it in the 1980s, so I have been reading Hambly’s books for three decades. The award-winning author has also written in the science fiction, fantasy and supernatural genres.

*

Do you enjoy reading series? What are some of your favorites?

Friday Finds – July 31, 2015

SnoopySpyGlassFF

Friday Finds is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm to showcase books you recently found and added to your TBR list. It doesn’t matter whether you found them free online, borrowed them from a library or purchased them. Anything and everything works.

My Finds for the month of July include a modern classic, a non-fiction and four series mysteries. A nice haul!

*  *  *  *  *

Justine
(Book One of the Alexandria Quartet)
by Laurence Durrell

Justine

I’ve known about and considered reading the Alexandra Quartet for a number of years. When I saw it on Fred’s Desert Island list earlier this month, I knew the time had come. Thanks, Fred!

*  *  *  *  *

Places
The Journey of My Days, My Lives
by Thaao Penghlis

ThaaoPlaces

Having enjoyed watching Thaao Penghlis on General Hospital and Days of Our Lives, I’ve been looking forward to the paperback publication of Places. Thaao Penghlis has also been in a number of movies, including portraying a fascinating character in one of my favorite movies, Altered States.

*  *  *  *  *

Now for the series mysteries:

FourMysterySeries

The Blood of an Englishman (Agatha Raisin #25) by M C Beaton – a tried and true series for me which I have been following for years.

The Twelve Clues of Christmas (Royal Spyness #6) and Heirs and Graces (Royal Spyness #7) by Rhys Bowen – a new series I put off reading, finally tried thanks to Selah at A Bibliophile’s Style and now love.

Dead Water (Benjamin January #8) by Barbara Hambly – I first heard of Barbara Hambly through her Star Trek novels and am now hooked on her historical mystery series set in New Orleans.

*  *  *  *  *

Share your Finds with us! We’d love to know if you found anything exciting this week.

Teaser Tuesdays – June 30, 2015

LatinQuarterTT

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by MizB of A Daily Rhythm.

Anyone can participate.

If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at MizB’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Teaser Tuesdays Page.

A series mystery for me this week.

Fever Season
(Benjamin January #2)
by Barbara Hambly

FeverSeason

Men don’t need to be evil, Mademoiselle.
They just have to be bad enough to say,
There’s nothing I can do.

This book is blowing me away! Hambly’s portrayal of New Orleans in the 1830s is breath-taking. It’s like I am there. I can feel the oppressive summer heat. I can also feel the fear of contracting yellow fever which is raging through the town.

*   *   *   *   *   *

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.

Friday Finds – December 26, 2014

SnoopyHappy

Friday Finds is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading to showcase books you recently found and added to your TBR (to be read) list. It doesn’t matter whether you found them free online, borrowed them from a library or purchased them. Anything and everything works.

Eleven books made it into my home this month. The one I am most excited about is non-fiction (an unusual occurrence for me).

The River of Doubt
Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey
by Candice Millard

RiverOfDoubt

Cover blurb:

The River of Doubt–it is a black, uncharted tributary of the Amazon that snakes through one of the most treacherous jungles in the world.

. . . . . Theodore Roosevelt set his sights on the most punishing physical challenge he could find, the first descent of an unmapped, rapids-choked tributary of the Amazon. Together with his son Kermit and Brazil’s most famous explorer, Candido Mariano da Silva Rondon, Roosevelt accomplished a feat so great that many at the time refused to believe it. In the process, he changed the map of the Western Hemisphere forever. Along the way, Roosevelt and his men faced an unbelievable series of hardships, losing their canoes and supplies to punishing whitewater rapids, and enduring starvation, Indian attack, disease, drowning, and a murder within their own ranks.

Theodore Roosevelt’s own account of this journey in Through the Brazilian Wilderness is available free from Project Gutenberg.

* * * * * * * *

The other ten books are all series mysteries:

Sold Down the River by Barbara Hambly (Benjamin January #4)
Die Upon a Kiss by Barbara Hambly (Benjamin January #5)
Wet Grave by Barbara Hambly (Benjamin January #6)

The Ever-Running Man by Marcia Muller (Sharon McCone #24)
Locked In by Marcia Muller (Sharon McCone #26)
Coming Back by Marcia Muller (Sharon McCone #27)

Breakdown by Sara Paretsky (V.I. Warshawski #15)
Critical Mass by Sara Paretsky (V.I. Warshawski #16)

Tomb of the Golden Bird by Elizabeth Peters (Amelia Peabody #18)
A River in the Sky by Elizabeth Peters (Amelia Peabody #19)

* * * * * * * *

Tempt us with your Friday Finds! Miz B is on a holiday break, but you can  leave a comment with the link to your own Friday Finds post below. If you don’t have a blog, you may share your finds in a comment here anyway. We’d love to know what you found this week.

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

FreeMan

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.