New (to-me) Find

33867423It’s been a while since I’ve stayed up way past my bedtime to read just one more chapter, but that was pretty much what I was doing all of last week.

Estara recommended W.R. Gingell’s fantasy books some time back, and I finally got around to reading SHARDS OF A BROKEN SWORD, which is a compilation of three of her interlinked shorter novels (novellas?).  Needless to say, I loved it.

Her writing hit all the right buttons for me – she had clever and strong-minded heroines with a keen sense of the absurd, male counterparts who were worthy foils for them, and plots centred around twisty, mysterious puzzles.  I adored the first two stories, though the third felt a bit rushed towards the end.  All in all though, a most refreshingly enjoyable fantasy.

29481285I immediately dived into the second of her books that I own – MASQUE, a Beauty and the Beast retelling, and which, for some reason, has been sitting on my Kindle for a while (I suspect I picked it up when it was for free or discounted).  If you’re like me and don’t care for fairy-tale retellings, don’t worry as I was halfway through the book when I realised the parallels to Beauty (yes, I can be slow).  Again, this was pretty much my catnip – a whodunnit in a fantasy regency-like setting.  While the villain was a bit too obvious, it didn’t affect my enjoyment of the story one bit.  I thoroughly loved spending time with Isabella, Lord Pecus, and the rest of Bella’s merry band.

I’m currently reading SPINDLE, which you get for free when you sign up to her newsletter.  If you’ve guessed it’s a Sleeping Beauty (with some added Rapunzel) retelling, you’re right.  I have to say that I’m not loving this as much as the previous two, possibly because Poly has just awoken up from an enchanted sleep and is still trying to find her feet.  She’s different to the very self-assured heroines of the previous books, and I’m missing that self-confidence in her interactions – but things are picking up!  I noticed WR Gingell references Diana Wynne Jones in the dedication of this book, and this story definitely has a DWJ flavour to it.

And once I’m finished with this, well, Gingell’s written a couple more books, and there’s a new release in April.


I feel like this entire post has been a book rec, but here’s another one: Sherwood Smith’s LHIND THE THIEF.  I’ve a soft spot for YA fantasy – my Goodreads review here.

6 thoughts on “New (to-me) Find

  1. Interesting to read that you liked Masques so much. I massively got annoyed with the ease that the heroine overlooked a lot of horrid crimes, some comitted against old friends of hers and that she had some tstl moments when she was being protected by ‘the beast’.
    Everything else I liked a lot though, and Spindle will show her to better effect as a side character at the end.
    I enjoy that the heroine of Spindle slowly gets agency she has been lacking her whole life, too :D.

    • Oh, this is so much YMMV!

      I love murder mystery plots in fantasy, and so I happily overlooked the things that bothered you. Her reaction to the original murder (and the reveal implications) did feel a bit understated.

      I’m heading into the second half of SPINDLE and enjoying it, good to know Bella will make an appearance!

    • Hurrah – so glad you enjoyed LINESMAN! I whizzed through the entire trilogy, and am really looking forward to their next book.

      Gingell self-pubs, so her books are not too expensive. I’d recommend starting with SHARDS perhaps – it’s also cheaper than buying the three separate novels separately. Or sign up for her mailing list and get SPINDLE for free. I admit to preferring SHARDS to SPINDLE, but I think Estara liked the latter very much…

      • I’m all about the instant gratification myself, I whizzed through the Linesman trilogy in a week.

        I hope you enjoy Shards! I’m really looking forward to her new release next month.

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