On a Saturday – I know. But it has been a rather crazy week. Very short COVID-update. My friend has tested positive and therefore I am currently in quarantine, dreading the moment I might start developing symptoms. I just had my appointment for the test, and will have to stay in quarantine until Monday regardless of the test result – providing I remain symptom free.
Favorite Friday is a bookish meme which was started a couple of weeks ago over at The Midnight Book blog. Since the prompts posed interesting questions I’ve decided to join. Today’s question is about a favorite book from my childhood.
I have a confession to make. I didn’t read that much as a child! I read much more nowadays. This is quite funny, because almost everyone I know claims they read much more as a child than they do now. Nevertheless, I of course read some books, and have warm feelings towards some of them.
I already discussed last week how I really enjoyed reading Thea Beckman and how it got me interested in history but also dystopian books. Another genre that I like to read is Time Travel, so I started wondering where that all started. And I think it was with this series, which strictly speaking is not real time travel, but close enough.
When I was in the final year of primary school (so around 12 years old) I had a friend who was so enthusiast about these books and said they would also be perfect for me. Like I said, I didn’t read that much around that time, but I was immediately taken in with the series. The first three books I thoroughly loved. Another trilogy was written later and I don’t know how I felt about that one. Maybe I had outgrown the series, maybe they weren’t so good. I mainly enjoyed spending time with my favorite characters there, but felt it was leaning too heavily on these nostalgic feelings.
(Although now that I looked the book up again – I realize just how ugly that cover is 😅. Those eyes!)
City of Masks (Stravaganza #1) – Mary Hoffman
Lucien is seriously ill but his life is transformed when an old Italian notebook gives him the power to become a stravagante, a time traveller with access to 16th century Italy. He wakes up in Bellezza (Venice) during carnival time and meets Arianna, a girl his own age who is disguised as a boy in the hope of being selected as one of the Duchessa’s mandoliers. Arianna gives Lucien her boy’s clothing and he is selected as a mandolier himself, becoming a friend of fellow-stravagante Rodolfo, the Duchessa’s lover, and saving the Duchessa’s life when she is threatened by an assassin hired by the powerful di Chimici family. For state occasions the Duchessa uses her maid Giuliana as a body-double but Guiliana commits the fatal mistake of revealing the secret to her fiance Enrico and a sequence of devastating consequences unravels. Meanwhile Lucien has met the original stravagante, the Elizabethan alchemist William Dethridge, and he begins to understand that he may be called to follow in his footsteps.
What are your childhood favorites? – Please let me know in the comments!