Showing posts from February, 2015

Currently Running Play: The Countess by Gregory Murphy

Just a quick post for anyone in the United States, specifically North Carolina, interested in The Pre-Raphaelites and Effie Gray this might interest you! “The Countess,” written by Gregory Murphy, explores the nature of art, beauty and truth. Based on actual events, the play follows the story of Effie Ruskin and her husband, famed British art critic John Ruskin, as well as famed Pre-Raphaelite artist John Millais, on an 1853 holiday in Scotland. As the stormy Highland weather forces the company inside a cramped cabin, hidden tensions and hypocrisies are exposed, leaving Effie with a difficult choice to make. A quote from John Ruskin serves as inspiration for the production: “The greatest thing a human soul ever does in this world is to see.” University News Appalachian State University Ticket prices start at just $9 for Appalachian students and $16 for adults. For more information visit , or call the box office at 828-262-4046, or the toll

The Taxidermist's Daughter by Kate Mosse Reviewed!

Sussex, 1912.  In a churchyard, villagers gather on the night when the ghosts of those who will die in the coming year are thought to walk. Here, where the estuary leads out to the sea, superstitions still hold sway.  Standing alone is the taxidermist's daughter. At twenty-two, Constantia Gifford lives with her father in a decaying house: it contains all that is left of Gifford's once world-famous museum of taxidermy. The stuffed birds that used to grace every parlour are out of fashion, leaving Gifford a disgraced and bitter man. The string of events that led to the museum's closure are never spoken of and an accident has robbed Connie of any memory of those days. The bell begins to toll and all eyes are fixed on the church. No one sees the gloved hands holding a garotte. As the last notes fade into the dark, a woman lies dead. While the village braces itself against rising waters and the highest tide of the season, Connie struggles to discover who is responsible

Happy Valentine's Day (I'll Meet You on the Turret Stairs)

‘The Meeting on the Turret Stairs’ is one of the better-known works of Frederic William Burton. The theme comes from a medieval Danish ballad which describes how Hellelil fell in love with Hildebrand, Prince of Engelland, one of her twelve personal guards. Her father orders his seven sons to kill him.   They stood at the door with spear and shield:  ‘Up Lord Hildebrand! out and yield!’  He kissed me then mine eyes above:-  ‘Say never my name, thou darling love’  Out of the door Lord Hildebrand sprang;  Around his head the sword he swang.   Hildebrand kills her father and six brothers before Hellelil intercedes to save the youngest. Hildebrand dies of his wounds and Hellelil herself dies shortly afterwards.  Burton did not choose a violent episode and instead freely interpreted the story, placing their farewell on the turret stairs and leaving the reason for it to the imagination. His invention of the kiss on the woman's outstretched arm and the lack of eye cont

An Interview with Kris Lundberg discussing her play Muse and Remembering Elizabeth Siddal

On this day in 1862, Mrs. Dante Gabriel Rossetti passed away. Her name was Elizabeth Eleanor Siddal (25 July 1829 – 11 February 1862) an artist's muse who dreamed of becoming an artist herself and she was well on her way until well we all know how it ended. So,  I wanted to do something different to honor such an enigmatic woman. Besides, the blog biography article with Pre-Raphaelite centered Rossetti Siddal 'Muse' association; I thought of my friend Kris Lundberg and the idea of interviewing her! What better day to post an interview than today? Well, I must explain that I came home from work last night, dog tired when I remembered today's anniversary and thought what could I do differently...So, my wholehearted, complete gratitude to Kris Lundberg for answering my interview questions not only in less than my short not so 24 hour request but her answers are straight from the heart with love and dedication to Lizzie and of course her Gabriel... Here we go...get ready

My soon to be published Upcoming Reads and Reviews...

Here is just a quick post to give you an idea of what I will be reading and reviewing in the next few months. Nothing too heavy in subject matter just fun reads. I hope you will check them out for yourself and look for upcoming reviews as well.   The UK release of, ' The Girl in the Photograph ' by Kate Riordan is already published. If any of my UK followers and friends have already read it, please comment below and let me know your thoughts. It will soon be published in the U.S. under a different title, ' Fiercombe Manor ' on March 17th, 2015.  The cover is equally as pretty.  The Girl in the Photograph is a haunting and atmospheric novel that tells the tales of women in two different eras – the 1890’s and 1930’s – and how their lives seem to be entwined by fate. Kate Riordan’s novel is a beautifully dark and beguiling tale which will sweep you away. It will appeal to fans of Kate Morton and Daphne Du Maurier's Rebecca. In the summer of 1933, Alice Eve