Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Missing Scarab

I saw a post on Twitter  by Rachel’s Random Resources a while ago inviting bloggers to take part in a blog blitz.  Being fairly new to the blogging world I wasn’t entirely sure what a Blog Blitz was so I decided to inquire further.  It sounded like a very interesting way to promote a book and when I looked at the information of the book that this blitz was in aid of it piqued my interest!  Read below to find out why

What is Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Missing Scarab?

Barnabas Tew, a detective in Victorian London, is having a hard time making a name for himself, probably because most of his clients end up dead before he can solve their cases. His luck is about to change, though, for better or worse: Anubis, the Egyptian god of the dead, notices him and calls him to the Egyptian underworld. A terrible kidnapping has occurred; one that promises to put an end to the status quo and could perhaps even put an end to the entire world. It is up to Barnabas (along with his trusty assistant, Wilfred) to discover the culprit and set things to right. Can he turn his luck around and solve the most important case of his life?

Purchase Link – mybook.to/Barnabas

Victorian Detective you say? Egyptian Underworld is it?

Then let me blitz away.

Now if you have read any of my blog posts before you will know that I don’t do reviews, what I like to do is more of a discussion piece (maybe even a mini essay type thing sometimes) on a book.  There is one theme in this book that stood out to me that I would like to discuss, and that is strong female characters.

Barnabas Tew - Cover

If you have ever been slightly obsessed with period crime mysteries like myself, such as Poirot, Miss Marple or Sherlock Holmes you may have noticed that very often the only time you will see a female character who is strong and capable is usually when she is also evil and a murderess so it was quite refreshing to see a few female characters in this book, which was in the style of a period crime novel, who drove the narrative in a positive way.  Indeed it is my opinion that Barnabas and Wilfred probably would have struggled to get anything done at all without the female characters in this book.

The woman leapt down from her perch with feline grace.  As she walked across the room toward them, they saw that she pranced forward standing entirely on her tip-toes like a cat.

My favourite of these strong female characters in this novel is Bastet, the warrior cat Goddess who just loves to put people in their place.  She is unbeatable in battle and shows no fear in the face of her enemies.  Although I really enjoyed meeting all of the Egyptian gods in the book and reading about their individual personality traits that came through in their behaviours and actions, Bastet really stood out to me as a very well written character, her movements were described as wholly cat like and her personality went from lazing around to ready for business in the blink of an eye, just like my own Egyptian Mau cat, and I imagine that if she were to develop human characteristics she would be very much like Noonan’s version of Bastet!

Who is Columbkill Noonan?

Barnabas Tew - ColumbkillNoonanPhoto

Columbkill Noonan lives in Baltimore, Maryland, USA, where she teaches yoga and Anatomy and Physiology.  Her work has appeared in numerous anthologies and magazines. Her first novel, “Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Missing Scarab” by Crooked Cat Books, was released in 2017, and her latest work, “Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Nine Worlds”, is set to be released in September 2018.

In her spare time, Columbkill enjoys hiking, paddle boarding, aerial yoga, and riding her rescue horse, Mittens. To learn more about Columbkill please feel free to visit her website (www.columbkill.weebly.com), on Facebook (www.facebook.com/ColumbkillNoonan) or on Twitter (@ColumbkillNoon1).

Thank you for reading!  Please feel free to comment for any further discussions about this book, or any others, and I am always looking for recommendations.  Please remember to follow if you are interested in reading further discussions on other books I have enjoyed.  

Amy

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3 Days, 3 Quotes Challenge – Day 3

Many thanks to Anna The Fangirl for the nominating me for this challenge! Check out her lovely blog full of cool content about movies, TV shows, music etc, it is worth a visit!

Rules:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you.
  2. Post a quote for three consecutive days (a quote for each day).
  3. Nominate three bloggers each day.

Day 3 Quote:

‘Every day, once a day, give yourself a present. Don’t plan it, don’t wait for it, just let it happen. It could be a new shirt at the men’s store, a catnap in your office chair or two cups of good hot black coffee’ Agent Dale Cooper, Twin Peaks

My third choice for the quote challenge is a bit of a detour from the theme, as this is not from a book.  This is from the TV series Twin Peaks of which I happen to be a massive fan, like all the best people are!

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Everything about Twin Peaks is awesome, from the opening credits to the soundtrack, the acting and the script.  It is hilarious and terrifying and weird and comforting and so many other things all at once.

Dale Cooper’s words of wisdom here are something that I like to remember, when I am having a bad day or some stress at work is starting to get to me.  That is when I think, it is maybe time for me to give myself that present now, a hot black cup of coffee, coming right up!

My final three bloggers to nominate are;

jennifertarheelreader

bookishbrunette

What’s in my Wonderland?

Thank you!

Amy

 

 

3 Days, 3 Quotes Challenge – Day 2

Many thanks to Anna The Fangirl for the nominating me for this fun and interesting challenge! She’s got a lovely blog full of cool content about movies, TV shows, music etc, go have a look!

Rules:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you.
  2. Post a quote for three consecutive days (a quote for each day).
  3. Nominate three bloggers each day.

Day 2 Quote:

‘He’s more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.’ Catherine Earnshaw, Wuthering Heights

For day two I felt that I had to chose a quote from a book that is full of the most descriptive and emotive language that I’ve ever read.

I remember my first time reading through Wuthering Heights, there were numerous times when I had to physically put down the book because I had read something so beautiful that I needed a moment to process it properly, and then a few more moments to read it over again to make sure I was fully appreciating the genius on the page in front of me.

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Emily Bronte, photo in the public domain.

I love all work by the Brontë’s, obviously, as do most people who have an appreciation for literature, but Wuthering Heights is on another level for me.  There is nothing I have ever read before or since where such raw emotion can come through so vividly through words on a page.

Wouldn’t it have been lovely if Emily could have lived longer and given us more of her beautiful words!

Three more bloggers to nominate today and they are;

Reader Voracious

Audio Killed the Bookmark

The Travelling Inkwell

These are three blogs that I love reading so I can’t wait to see what quotes they come up with!

Final quote coming tomorrow.

Thank you for reading!

Amy

3 Days, 3 Quotes Challenge – Day 1

Many thanks to Anna The Fangirl for the nominating me for what I think is going to be a very interesting challenge! She’s got a lovely blog full of cool content about movies, TV shows, music etc, go have a look!

Rules:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you.
  2. Post a quote for three consecutive days (a quote for each day).
  3. Nominate three bloggers each day.

Day 1 Quote:

‘And though she be but little, she is fierce’ Helena, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

I bet it is no surprise that I chose a Shakespeare quote for my first day of this challenge!

The reason I picked this quote in particular is because I am also quite little and can be very fierce when needed, both in the way it was intended in this quote but also in the Tyra Banks sense of the word.

AMERICA'S NEXT TOP MODEL
Photo from https://www.imdb.com by Jonathan Mannion – © © 2009 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved

Smize!

The quote above actually infuriates Hermia when it is directed at her by Helena, she does not like being called little, oh how times have changed for us women!

 That is day 1 done, and the three bloggers I would like to tag are;

Jenniely

readingwithjessica

The Mystique Reader

Looking forward to seeing what you three amazing bloggers chose for your quotes!  Of course if you have already done this challenge then I’m sorry for replicating, feel free to ignore!

I will be back tomorrow with my next quote.

Thank you for reading!

Amy

 

Books for the Pups

A while ago I wrote about buying my Niece and my Nephew books for their Easter presents.  They have since had plenty of time to digest the books and get my poor sister to read them over and over and over again.

A tradition that started a few years ago when I really didn’t want to add to the piles of chocolate that these two little monsters get every year, an annual visit to Waterstones seemed a much better option!

Here is a quick look at the books the Pups chose this year and a few comments direct from the cuties themselves.

Nibbles the Dinosaur Guide

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From what I can gather Nibbles seems to be a series of books about a little monster that eats books.  I don’t know, however it has lift up flaps and bits to peek through and is about dinosaurs so it gets my support.

‘What do you call a dinosaur who sleeps all day?  A Dinosnore!’

Ivy chose Nibbles the Dinosaur Guide because she has read other Nibbles stories that she has liked.  She loved the jokes in this book, they perfect for her age group and she has taken enjoyment in repeating some of the jokes at every opportunity.

She has said that she really enjoyed the book and that her favourite part was the bit where the triceratops gets stuck, whatever that means!

Ten Little Superheroes

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Pip has quite a few of the books in the Ten Little series so when he saw Ten Little Superheroes it was a done deal that this would be the one he chose.  He loves this series of books and the repetition in them mean he can go through and quite easily recall what each page is about enabling him to kind of read them himself even though he cannot read the words as yet.

‘coo-ee’

Pip did say when he had finished this book that he likes the Ten Little Pirates better because the mermaid says ‘coo-ee’ but he did seem to enjoy this one also.  His favourite part was superman.

Thank you for reading! It is lovely to see these little pups getting some enjoyment out of the books I bought them. I hope that this has been good to read as well and maybe given some ideas for books for the younger ones in your family or friendship circle.  Please remember to follow to see future posts!

Amy

Indulging in Choc-Lit

Even though I am currently watching what I eat I decided to go along to the Choc Lit -Readers Evening at The Word, South Shields, last night.  However instead of feasting on chocolatey treats, I instead feasted on literary delights and had my interest piqued in a genre that has always previously eluded me!

A Delicious Selection of Fiction!

Choc Lit are an independent British publisher of women’s fiction and romance and although “chic lit” has never been my first choice of reading material I was intrigued by the idea of a women’s publisher and I was also hoping to attend a few of the events that were being held as part of the WRITE Festival so I thought I would tag along.  I am glad I did, it was a sweet and satisfying way to spend an evening!

Juliet Archer – Author

First we heard from author, Juliet Archer and how she has always been of the opinion that good literature should be just like chocolate, irresistible!  Any character, she mused, can be compared to a type of chocolate, there may be a nutty one, or soft centered, perhaps even a bitter one.

Juliet has always had a fondness for the works of Jane Austen, which being a fan of the classics I can totally relate to.  I was very interested to hear how some of her published works with Choc-Lit are retellings of Jane Austen’s classics with a modern view point.

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Photo from http://www.choc-lit.com/

One of the books I came home from the event with was The Importance of Being Emma winner of  the 2011 Big Red Reads Fiction AwardThis was Juliet’s first in her series Darcy and Friends and is described as staying “true to the original” although giving the reader “fresh insights into the mind of its thoroughly updated and irresistible hero.”  

Kirsty Ferry – Author

Next up on the panel was Kirsty Ferry who started off writing for competitions and also OU courses (lovely to see a fellow OU alumni by the way!)

After winning her first competition having only spent two hours writing her submission Kirsty, quite rightly, thought maybe this was something she was good at and decided to keep at it.  She then had a go at self publishing before finding Choc Lit who published her mysterious sounding title Some Veil Did Fall which went on to become the first in her The Rossetti Mysteries series.

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Photo from http://www.choc-lit.com/

Well a book with a cover like that is just begging to be bought isn’t it?  So I obliged.  Knowing that Kirsty is a fan of Wuthering Heights assures me that this will be a book that is full of atmosphere and I can’t wait to get stuck into it!

Jane Lovering – Author

The final speaker was the very entertaining Jane Lovering who writes “quirky” romantic comedies.  Having heard her speak I can bet they are laugh out loud worthy stories because she had the whole room chuckling with her anecdotes.

Jane, who began writing by taking her beloved childhood stories about ponies and rewriting them by placing herself in the story, took a long break while raising her family.  As soon as she could she picked her pen back up, this time creating stories from her own imagination.  She studied a part time Creative Writing degree and evidently became very good at it!

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Photo from http://www.choc-lit.com/

Please Don’t Stop the Music won the 2012 Romantic Novel of the Year, although it almost didn’t get published!  Choc Lit received the book however it didn’t meet their USP of having a “male point of view” in the story.  Jane accepted this and decided there was no way she could re-write her story with a male view point as she said it was one of the fundamental aspects of the book that it was not known exactly what the male protagonist was thinking.  However sometime after while out walking her dogs it came to her mind that maybe she could include diary entries from the male character, how clever!  She incorporated this idea into the book and sent it back to Choc Lit and this time they accepted and published the novel.

And so a third book was added to my pile to take home!   I am lucky that indulging in this kind of Choc Lit will not expand my waistline.

Choc Lit

After such an enjoyable evening I will definitely be on the lookout for similar events in the future and have to extend a special thanks to Choc Lit for expanding my bookshelf horizons to include a bit more variety.  I have also signed up for their newsletter as I am sure it will be full of more interesting reads!

Thank you for taking the time to read through my post!  I have a couple more events to attend as part of the WRITE Festival and if I find them as enjoyable as I found this one I will be sure to post about them too.  Please follow my blog if you would like to hear more about the festival or about the books above once I have finished reading them (as well as all the other books on my growing tbr pile).  Please feel free to leave comments and suggestions!

Amy

Sunshine Blogger Award

Recently I was nominated to write this post by an amazing blogger that I have been lucky to connect with on Twitter and WordPress, Kaleena at Reader Voracious, sorry that it has taken me a while to get round to doing this Kaleena! Connect with Kaleena, especially if you want to see posts from someone with a true love of books as this shines through in all her work!

I was so flattered to see I had been nominated for this award as it is for “bloggers who are positive, inspiring and bring some sunshine into people’s lives.”  I can honestly say that nearly every blogger I have connected with since I started this falls under that category, what a wonderful community I am becoming a part of!

So let’s get to it…

The Rules

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you by linking their blog
  2. Answer the questions
  3. Nominate 11 blogs with 11 questions
  4. List the rules as well as display the Sunshine Award Logo on your post

The Answers

  1. What was your inspiration to start a book blog?

After completing a degree in English Literature which took me 6 years to study in my spare time, alongside working full time and trying to maintain an active social life, I become quite despondent due to missing the sense of accomplishment I felt whenever I completed an essay on a book I had read.  I couldn’t find anything to fill up the void I felt until I finally thought to myself, well just keep writing essays.  I thought that a blog would be a good platform to do this, I didn’t for a minute expect that other people might actually like reading it but I am thrilled that some do!

2. How long have you been blogging?

Only since the beginning of April and I hope that it continues for a long while!

3. What is your favorite book, and why?

Oh that is too hard!  I think the first time I was really in awe of a book was when I read The Handmaids Tale.  It wasn’t the first time I had written an essay on a book but it was the first time I wrote one on a book I had really connected with and it was probably the book that made me want to study more about literature.

4. Who is your hero?

I have loads of hero’s, everyone I know is a hero for different things.

5. What is your proudest accomplishment?

That has got to be completing my degree as a mature student through the Open University.

6. Which blog post are you most excited about?

This one!

7. What would you sing on a karaoke night?

I’d probably go for some classic Madonna.

8. If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Chinese takeaways, burgers or cake.  That would be a very hard choice and all things that I am currently being deprived of as I am trying really hard to be good at the moment!

9. What is the last movie you saw, and what did you think of it?

I watched the Ghostbusters on Friday night and I loved it as it is one of my favourite classic movies.  I even enjoyed the new one that was released last year.  The last movie I saw that I haven’t watched before was the new avengers film which I saw at the cinema last weekend and I did not like that, I got myself a bit upset in the cinema.

10. Is your glass half full or half empty?

Well I have always said if my glass is half empty then that means I can get myself a refill so I will go with that.

11. What has been your biggest blogging challenge that you have overcome?

Time is a big challenge, finding the time to prepare and write posts.  Also a future challenge that I a trying not to think about too much right now will be making it actually look nice and more organised, with separate pages and things like that.  I will worry about that later!

The Questions

  1. What are your hobbies?
  2. Do you have any pets?
  3. What is your favourite thing about blogging?
  4. And your least favourite…?
  5. Do you have a favourite book genre and what is it?  Why is it your favourite?
  6. What do you do when you are struggling for motivation?
  7. Do you ever reward yourself for completing a task on your to do list?
  8. How do you wind down after a busy or stressful day?
  9. Would you say you are more of an early bird or a night owl?
  10. What kinds of things inspire you in life?
  11. Do you currently have a main goal that you are working towards?

The Nominees

The Little Booknerds in the Corner

Chrikaru Reads

Books and Dachshunds

Short Book and Scribes

Reading Under the Blankie

Merline Reads

Bookish Brunette

Back to Fiction

Sarah’s Vignettes

Amorette’s Reviews

Why Words Work

Thank you for the nomination and thank you anyone for reading!  If you want to read more from me then please remember to follow and I will try to keep things interesting and varied for you!  Please feel free to make suggestions for future posts or share ideas about my existing posts.

Amy