Zemfirka Blogs

Book lover, reviewer, blogger... <3

Visit me @ Zemfirka Blogs or Nocturnal Book Reviews



I read a variety of genres but tend to favor romantic fiction, whether paranormal, steampunk, or historical. Some dystopian, UF, and even an occasional mystery might make their way onto my reading list. Otherwise, anything that sounds quirky and fun goes! :)


Midnight in Austenland

Midnight in Austenland - Shannon Hale Another trip down to Austenland takes a curious turn from an expected romance world to a murder mystery à la Agatha Christie, which is of course an expected outcome since we, the reader, are informed from the beginning that our heroine is a fan of the beloved crime writer as well as Ms. Austen.

This time around Mrs. Cordial (Charlotte Kinder) – our heroine – seeks an escapist world of Austenland as a means to cure her broken heart from a divorce. At first, I must say, I was quite sympathetic with Charlotte. I’ve raised my hopes high, anticipating that an experienced woman, an entrepreneur, a mother of two, and though sadly a “first” wife – will be a breath of fresh air and will turn out to be a strong, independent, self-sufficient woman at the end (“The First Wives Club” anyone?). Alas, as the novel progressed I found myself irritated with the lack of growth this character made and the convenient conclusion.

Charlotte was chaotic, stupid, irresponsible, and simply acted like a teenager herself (while being a mother of a teenager). I wanted to take her by the shoulders and shake her hard out of her stupor over being in love with Edie – the woman practically had a meltdown, when she realized she had kids who awaited her home and thus could not spend more time to continue this farce.

I found it perhaps charming the first time around the way Ms. Hale moved the plot of Austenland #1 along – the conclusion was welcomed and appropriate. Jane, even though ended up with a happy ending – had managed to rid herself of her unhealthy Mr. Darcy fascination; but one has to wonder whether the editor was half asleep while reading Austenland #2 – it felt “draft-y”. After it was revealed who the murderer was – I half expected the novel to end, but strange enough – my Kindle showed another 20-something percent remained. “What else can possibly extend the plot of this novel further?” – I wondered.Well, dear reader, apparently one can have added a few more repetitive scenes to keep this going; that is if you didn’t get what was going on before. It felt like being hit with the same brick over and over again. I wanted to scream: “I get it – our murderer is crazy. Let’s move on already!”

We finally reached the conclusion and a mandatory happy ending conveniently worked itself out. Our heroine lost her head completely and readily moved her kids, work, life to a different continent to live the happily-ever-after with her “pseudo” prince charming (or is it Mr. Darcy?) – a now-sober alcoholic, who plays dress-up for a living. We all shall be so lucky. Naturally, the fairy tale took place after the oh-so-witty conversation with one’s Inner Thoughts (that were a plenty throughout the novel as well), and decided to “responsibly” run away without saying good bye to the man she loves. But, of course, - no judging.

So there, Mrs. Cordial got her fairy tale. Austenland out.

Currently reading

My Paris Kitchen: Recipes and Stories
David Lebovitz
An Echo in the Bone
Diana Gabaldon
Tangled (Tangled, #1)
Emma Chase
The Bronze Blade: An Elemental World Novella
Elizabeth Hunter