Waiting on WWW Wednesday
The good thing about living in Australia is that we are ahead of the rest of the world by a big margin (apart from New Zealanders who are ahead of us by a couple of hours)! So this means we get to celebrate Christmas and New Year first each year but it also means that when I post day specific stuff, such as today’s Wednesday post – it is MY Wednesday – but some of you haven’t even gone to bed on your Tuesday yet so think I am mad!!! Well on second thoughts, I am probably mad – but that is not what this post is about!
This post is a combination of two memes, which are WWW Wednesdays which is hosted by Taking on a World of Words and Waiting on Wednesdays which is hosted by Breaking the Spine, so the name has been changed to waiting on WWW Wednesday to reflect this combination.
The Three Ws of WWW Wednesdays are: What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’ll read next?
While “Waiting On Wednesday” is a weekly event, which spotlights upcoming releases that people are eagerly anticipating.
What am I currently reading?
I am currently reading Skin by Ilka Tampke, who is an Australian writer and this is her debut novel. Set in Iron Age Britain around AD 43. Britain is poised on the brink of Roman invasion and in the village of Caer Cad the locals look to their ancient rituals in order to guide them through the expected invasion. Ailia a fourteen-year-old girl who is on the brink of womanhood. Abandoned at birth, parents unknown, Ailia has no skin, or totem, as she had no known mother to pass one down to her. She is lucky though, taken in by the Cookmother who found the baby on her freezing doorstep, so now Ailia is working in the kitchens of the Tribequeen. I am only a little way into the story, but Ailia is now fourteen and she is preparing to join her first Beltane festival. Her lack of skin dictates she can’t be part of the rituals, and she is not allowed to learn – but for some reason she can join the Beltane ritual, and she is being taught about healing herbs by Cookmother. I am reading on to find out why.
What did I recently finish?
I have just finished The Accidental Empress by Allison Pataki. It is the story of Elizabeth – mostly known as Sisi – Empress of Austria and Queen of Hungary in the late 1800s. I am going to be visiting her palaces in Vienna and Budapest very soon so was very curious as to her history. Sisi was the daughter of a Bavarian duke, who allowed his daughters to roam around outside, ride horses, and partake in other "un-lady" like activities. The story opens as her older sister, Helene, is summoned by their Aunt Sophia to the Hapsburg Court in Vienna to marry her son the Emperor Franz Joseph. But Helene is not interested in becoming an Empress. She is shy, a bookworm, and wants to be a nun. Against her will Helene is taken to Vienna along with Sisi and their mother. The girls soon find out that Aunt Sophie is the power behind the throne and is overbearing, opinionated and controlling. Uncharacteristically Franz temporarily emerges from his mother’s control and falls in love with the vivacious, unconventional and charismatic Sisi, and insists on making her his bride, much to his mother’s dismay.
Once the wedding takes place though, Sisi is gradually suffocated by the rigid unyielding protocols of the imperial Hapsburg court. She realizes that the rebellion of marrying her is the only rebellion Franz is going to be allowed to get away with. He is firmly controlled by his mother. Her children are taken away from her at birth by Sophia, and Sisi is thwarted at every step to access them on a permanent basis. Franz takes on mistresses and one of them passes on a disease to Sisi and she almost dies, once she recovers she is never the same health wise and becomes obsessed with being thin. Gradually Sisi takes control of her own life – but it is one away from the court. Strangely once she takes this step of independence Franz learns to appreciate, and listen to, her political strategies and the story ends as he gives her permission to remain in Hungary while he returns to Vienna. There is a second book about Sisi and the second half of her life. But for now I am content with what I have read and will visit these palaces with interest seeing where she lived, and suffered.
What will I read next?
I have a few lined up to read, all needed for various reading challenges I am on:
The Copper Gauntlet by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare – the second in the Magisterium series
Sweet Inspiration by Penny Watson – It has elves in it – I need elves!!!
Winter in Full Bloom by Anita Higman
What am I waiting on?
I have a few books on pre-order at the moment that I am on the edge of my seat waiting to come out, all by authors who… well let’s just say that I’d buy their shopping list if it was published:
2 Australian Authors:
Outback Sisters by Rachael Johns – release date 01/03/16
Dastardly Deeds by Ilsa Evans – release date 10/03/16
2 non-Australian Authors:
Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs – release date 08/03/16
Britt-Marie was Here by Fredrik Backman – release date 05/05/16
(also posted over at Book Charmers)