Author Archives: Barbara Howe

In Memoriam

Two weeks ago, the world lost a wonderful teacher. In her ninety years, Sarah Lucinda Davison Howe touched many lives. As a professional, early in her career she taught in the public schools and later gave music lessons out of … Continue reading

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We were down on the South Island this past week, taking a short family vacation before delivering our daughter to the University of Canterbury for the start of the school year. For me, the highlight of the trip was the … Continue reading

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Year of Wonders

Category: Historical fiction Age: Adult. Some violence, non-graphic sex, graphic descriptions of the effects of the disease. The year is 1665. Bubonic plague is sweeping through London. Further to the north, in Derbyshire, the plague comes to the mining village … Continue reading

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The Five Hundred Kingdoms

Category: Fantasy Age: Varies. Minimal violence, but a few sex scenes. I’ve mentioned before that I’m a sucker for fairy tales. It shouldn’t be surprising then that Mercedes Lackey’s Five Hundred Kingdoms series appeals to me. In this fantasy world, … Continue reading

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Children of the Black Sun

Category: Fantasy Age: Adult. Violence, gore, sexual abuse, physical and psychological torture. Lots of it. What choices can you make when there are no acceptable choices left? That seems to be the question raised in Australian author Jo Spurrier’s Children … Continue reading

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Happy Holidays

It’s warm summer weather here in Wellington, with the pōhutukawa trees (also known as Kiwi Christmas trees) in full bloom. I don’t expect to be posting as regularly for the next couple of months—I’ve been working too hard, and want … Continue reading

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Turning over a new Leaf

I’ve turned over a new Leaf, and will no longer be burning fossil fuels on my daily trek to work. To be accurate, my all-electric Nissan Leaf is not new; it’s a 2014 model with 40,000 km on the odometer, … Continue reading

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Gaudy Night

Category: Mysteries Age: Teen and up. No sex, minimal violence. I’ve already written about Dorothy L Sayers’ Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries, but Gaudy Night, the penultimate book in the series, deserves a post of its own. Gaudy Night does not … Continue reading

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Reality intrusions

This has been a spectacular week. First my car broke down. The muffler fell off on Evans Bay Parade on my way to work, the battery died and needed a jump start, and the mechanic said it wasn’t worth replacing … Continue reading

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Dorothy L Sayers

Category: Mysteries Age: Teens and up Dorothy L Sayers is the writer most responsible for my ongoing love affair with British mystery novels. Her primary protagonist, Lord Peter Wimsey, may not be my favourite fictional detective—Brother Cadfael wins that honour—but … Continue reading

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