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Down with Downton: Part V, Season Three Recap

It’s the Spring of 1920, and Mary and Matthew are busy with wedding preparations. Everyone is excited about the wedding except Sybil and Branson, who can’t attend because they can’t afford the trip from Ireland. And except for Mr. Bates, who is still rotting in prison, accused of murdering his late wife. Oh, and except … Continue reading

Down with Downton: Part IV

When last we left Downton Abbey, Mary and Matthew were on the outs, Edith was a conniving spinster, Mr. Bates refused to be with Anna because he’s technically married, and the whole world was about to enter a Great War with Germany. So much unresolved angst! Let’s get right back into it. 1916: The war … Continue reading

Down with Downton: Part III

Alright, you’ve done the homework and memorized the org chart, now it’s time to reap the rewards! Sit back in your swivel chair, and get lost in the soapy splendor that is Downton Abbey. April, 1912: The Titanic has sunk, and the heir to the Crawley fortune went with it. Mary was also engaged to him, but she … Continue reading

Down with Downton: Part II

And we’re  back! Now that we’re all acquainted with the Crawley family, let’s meet the people who actually do the work around here. DOWNSTAIRS Mr. Carson: The old butler, oversees pretty much everything, with special authority over the footmen. He is compulsive about maintaining propriety and the reputation of Downton Abbey, and has a special … Continue reading

Down with Downton: Part I

It has recently come to my attention that, despite the immense popularity of Downton Abbey, a certain segment of the population has NOT been keeping up with the Crawleys. For shame! In order to remedy that, I am willing to recap seasons 1 and 2 (you’re welcome), so that late-comers can jump on the season 3 … Continue reading

“Happy Birthday” by Danielle Steel

This was my very first Danielle Steel novel, and I am a little embarrassed to admit that I had high expectations. I really should know better by now, but really, it’s DANIELLE STEEL! It’s like the gold standard of pulpy romance novels! Or so I thought. The book opens on November 1st, the birthday of … Continue reading

“Baby Bonanza” by Maureen Child

Buckle up y’all, it’s a Baby Bonanza! Babies! Flying! Everywhere! …Okay fine, it’s actually only two babies, and they’re relatively tame. Which is pretty disappointing after a title like Baby BONANZA. I would have expected at least 5 babies, of various parentages. But, I digress. Jenna Baker is on the worst cruise ever, stuck in … Continue reading

“Breaking Dawn” by Stephenie Meyer

It’s the epic conclusion to the book series that’s kept us all on tenterhooks for thousands of pages! Question will be answered! Lives will be lost! Sex will be had! But first, Bella and Edward have to get married. And so it starts… In her typically ungrateful fashion, Bella has agreed to marry Edward and … Continue reading

“Eclipse” by Stephenie Meyer

The time has come again, my friends, to speak of mythical things. Like vampire lovers, werewolf frenemies, and human failings in all things reasonable. We open on a letter from Jacob to Bella, which is full of strike-throughs. Which I find implausible (wouldn’t he just start over on a new piece of paper?) but page … Continue reading

“New Moon” by Stephenie Meyer

You know when your friends start a conversation with “So I had a crazy dream last night” and you immediately groan because other people’s dreams are NEVER INTERESTING? Well this whole book is like that. We open on another Bella nightmare, and obviously it’s a dark harbinger of things to come. She’s searching for Edward, … Continue reading