Author Archives: Barbara Howe

Rose in Bloom

The flurry of news articles about the latest movie adaptation of Luisa May Alcott’s Little Women prompted me to pull one of her less well-known novels off my bookshelf. I’ve read Little Women and its sequels, Little Men and Jo’s … Continue reading

Posted in Chick Lit, Children's Fiction | 2 Comments

The End of a Long Journey is in Sight

The end of my nearly ten-year trek through Frankland—the setting of the Reforging series—is finally in sight. I wrote the first scene in the first book, The Locksmith, in October 2010. The first scenes of the fifth and final book … Continue reading

Posted in A Writer's Life | 2 Comments

2019 Recap

The Icelandic custom of exchanging books on Christmas Eve, and spending the rest of the evening reading and eating chocolate, sounds to me like a great tradition. My family knows they’ll be getting books from me—I generally do at least … Continue reading

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Cloud Atlas

The most notable feature of David Mitchell’s award-winning—and challenging—novel Cloud Atlas is the book’s structure. Made up of six loosely-connected novellas, each in a radically different style and time period, this novel nests the six stories like Russian dolls. The … Continue reading

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The Lord of Stariel

Twenty-something Hetta (Henrietta) Valstar, master illusionist, returns to the Stariel estate after six years of self-imposed exile. But it’s too late for this prodigal daughter to reconcile with her tradition-bound, disapproving father, the Lord of Stariel. She’s come home for … Continue reading

Posted in Fairy Tales, Fantasy, Kiwi author, Noblebright Fantasy | Leave a comment

Imperial Radch: Ancillary Justice

The Imperial Radch trilogy by Ann Leckie, consisting of the books Ancillary Justice, Ancillary Sword, and Ancillary Mercy, is one of the most astounding and engrossing works I’ve had the pleasure of reading in a long time. Given the number … Continue reading

Posted in Science Fiction, Space Opera | Leave a comment

The Case of the Missing Kitchen

Suzie Emmett is having a bad week. It starts when she puts her hand through a window and needs stitches. It gets worse when her detective boyfriend takes her to a place she refuses to name, but that starts with … Continue reading

Posted in Kiwi author, Mysteries | Leave a comment

Volcano City: Earthcore Book Two

In Volcano City, book two in Grace Bridges’s YA Earthcore series, the crazed and villainous Mr B is back, and out for revenge on Anira and the superpower-endowed Earthcore team. Only now, instead of paving over and hiding natural wonders, … Continue reading

Posted in Kiwi author, New Zealand, Urban Fantasy | Leave a comment

Maus

For this year’s Banned Book Week, I re-read Art Spiegelman’s Holocaust memoir Maus. I discovered this Pulitzer-prize-winning graphic novel some thirty years ago when it was first published in book form*. It was deeply moving and disturbing then, and it … Continue reading

Posted in History (non-fiction) | Leave a comment

Banned Books Week

This coming week, 22 – 28 September 2019, is this year’s American Library Association’s Banned Book Week. I’m familiar with several entries in their list of 2018’s most challenged books, and have already blogged about both Alex Gino’s George—number one … Continue reading

Posted in On Reading | 2 Comments