It’s a good thing I’ve been procrastinating about putting in my spring garden, because winter isn’t going out gracefully—we are actually supposed to have frost tonight. And after reading my friend Claudia Gray’s new book Stargazer, I will never look at frost in quite the same way.
Stargazer is the sequel to Claudia’s kickass debut novel, Evernight. It continues the tale of Bianca Olivier, a sixteen-year-old not-quite-vampire (which is a story in itself—Claudia’s vampire mythology is unusual, detailed, and perversely logical), now a sophomore at the exclusive, darkly gargoyled private academy Evernight. I won’t spoil the story, but I will say Bianca now faces vengeful icy wraiths, vampires-gone-bad (What? You thought all vampires were bad? Welcome to Evernight), haunted humans and the fanatical guerrilla cult of vampire killers, the Black Cross (imagine Sarah Connor and crew chasing vampires instead of Terminators). And you thought when you were in high school you didn’t fit in.
Poor Bianca. On the other hand, she does get to be one point of an intense love triangle—with the other two points being her true love Lucas Ross and the delectable 300-years-young vampire Balthazar More.
The ice wraiths are scary critters. Imagine frost forming as you watch, faster and faster, creating feathers and curls on the windows, thickening and crackling and overrunning an entire room until the air itself freezes, the floor paves itself over with ice and glittering stalactites fall from the ceiling like huge silver spikes. Brrr! Thanks a lot, Claudia. Heh.
Fortunately we’re just going to have a little frost. I think.
This is a book I could just sit and read for hours on a rainy afternoon:
Try some of the quizzes. Larrup! Maypop! Mulligrubs! Noshery! Being from Texas, I actually know what Juneteenth is.
Speaking of words, my revisions are moving forward in fits and starts. The new book is clamoring for attention and I’m having to pet it and chuck it under the chin and reassure it that yes, I will take it out for a nice long walk and maybe even a ride in the car next month when its older sister is finished.
Being a logophile as well as a lover of historical oddities, I find this site delightful:
So many to choose from! It’s rather like opening a huge assortment of luscious Godiva chocolates.
Have I mentioned that I love history? I’m particularly partial to the sixteenth century, of course, because that’s the setting of my book (books, actually, because I’m beginning to work on another)—but I love bits and pieces of history from any time and any place.
For example, the Associated Press has this to say about Robin Hood:
Julian Luxford, an art history lecturer at Scotland’s University of St. Andrews, says a 23-word inscription in the margins of a history book, written in Latin by a medieval monk around 1460, casts the outlaw as a persistent thief.
“Around this time, according to popular opinion, a certain outlaw named Robin Hood, with his accomplices, infested Sherwood and other law-abiding areas of England with continuous robberies,” the note read when translated into English, Luxford said.
Luxford said he found the reference while searching through the library of England’s prestigious Eton College, which was founded in 1440 by King Henry VI.
And the Times Online reports that a very cold case has been solved:
Archeologists and forensic experts believe they have identified the skeleton of Cleopatra’s younger sister, murdered more than 2,000 years ago on the orders of the Egyptian queen.
The remains of Princess Arsinöe, put to death in 41BC on the orders of Cleopatra and her Roman lover Mark Antony to eliminate her as a rival, are the first relics of the Ptolemaic dynasty to be identified.
Cleopatra’s DNA! There has to be a story there.
From Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, Act I, Scene ii:
What say’st thou to me now? Speak once again.
Beware the ides of March.
He is a dreamer; let us leave him. Pass.
Fortunately there were no soothsayers around on the Ides of March some years ago, and my mother made it safely to the hospital to bring me into the world. Is the Ides of March a cool birthday or what?
My mother had a way with birthdays. My sister’s is April Fool’s Day. Really. And my brother’s is more or less on Thanksgiving (depending on the year). At least they’re all easy to remember!