After a lot of thought, I've decided to take a break from blogging for the foreseeable future. With my little C creeping its way back into my life and possible long term treatment now, I need to take a couple of things off my plate for the time being, and the blog is going to be one of those things. As it is, it felt like it was becoming more of a chore than anything else. I need my reading time to be more enjoyable right now, more of the escape that I really need, and what I don't need is the little voice in the back of my head telling me how many reviews I'm behind and trying to come up with what I need to say about the book.

I simply want to read.

I'll more than likely occasionally post on here what I've been reading, and if there is something that really blows my mind, I'll probably have more to say about it and may write up a proper post, but for right now, things are going to be very quiet around here.

As always, happy reading!
2017 edit
I will continue to blog according to my health and ability, and connecting my posts thru Goodreads, so please be patient if things get quiet around here again this year.

2017 edit #2
I am happy to report that my bone marrow transplant was a success and that I'm feeling more like myself everyday. That said, I'm going to try to start blogging a little more frequently, but please bare with me as I still continue to recover.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Book Tour: The Book of Unholy Mischief by Elle Newmark

I am participating in Elle Newmark's blog tour to promote her book, The Book of Unholy Mischief. I will point out, up front, hanging my head in shame, that I have not read The Book of Unholy Mischief. I see it there, on the shelf of every book store that I visit. I pick it up and look at it, every time. But then I think of the stack of books next to my bed that need to be read, and I reluctantly put it back. Well, I can honestly say that I think that is about to change. Elle Newmark was gracious enough to take time out of her busy schedule to tell us, in her own words, a little about The Book of Unholy Mischief:

A couple of reviewers have compared my novel, The Book of Unholy Mischief, to The DaVinci Code, and I would just like to say… Are you kidding?

The DaVinci Code is a modern thriller based on a questionable thesis. The Book of Unholy Mischief is a historical picaresque about the power of knowledge.

Yes, they are both set in Italy, but so is Under The Tuscan Sun. Yes, they both have an element of mystery, but so does Miss Marple. Perhaps the thing that makes reviewers antennae hum to the same vibration is the stuff about the Catholic Church. However, Dan Brown weaves a massive and debatable conspiracy theory, while I simply point out a few inconvenient historical facts. I'm hardly the first to do that (ask any Lutheran) and it’s not the main point of the book.

The Book of Unholy Mischief is about a street urchin in Renaissance Venice who is caught stealing a pomegranate by the doge's chef and becomes an apprentice in the palace kitchen.

The kid, Luciano, gets involved in all sorts of intrigues surrounding a mysterious book, and the church is a player (it's the Renaissance after all) and it looks like his boss and benefactor, the chef, is involved. So there's a story question and it happens in Italy and therefore… it must be Dan Brownish?


The thing that most readers mention about The Book of Unholy Mischief is the glut of food metaphors. All the chef's recipes mean something, and sometimes they mean trouble. I don't remember anyone having so much as a burger in The DaVinci Code while Unholy Mischief is a friggin' feast.

So I say again: Puleeese. Can we stop comparing books to The DaVinci Code? Can we get past this cookie-cutter mentality and read a novel on it's own merits? The Book of Unholy Mischief has something to say about the value of knowledge, and it says it with food. Dan Brown has zip to do with it. So if you read it, please keep that in mind, and buon appetito.

Visit me at

So there you have it, from the author herself. Needless to say, I think I'm going to have to be going on a search this weekend for The Book of Unholy Mischief and partake of this feast myself.

I'd like to thank Elle Newmark for taking the time to tell us about her book!

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