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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Tuesday - First Chapter - First Paragraph - Touch Not The Cat



Each Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile By the Sea shares the first part of a book that she is reading or thinking about reading.  This week, I'm reading an old favorite, Touch Not The Cat by Mary Stewart.  Here's a few paragraphs to set the scene at the beginning of a well-loved (by me) story:



     My lover came to me on the last night in April, with a message and a warning that sent me home to him.
     Put like that, it sounds strange, though it is exactly what happened.  When I try to explain it will no doubt sound stranger still....
     Bryony?
     Yes, I'm awake.  What is it?  But the trouble was there already, in the room.  It settled over me in a formless way, like fog; no colour, neither dark nor light, no smell, no sound; just a clenching tension of pain and the fear of death.  The sweat sprang hot on my skin, and the sheet scraped under my nails.  I sat up.
     I've got it, I think.  It's Daddy.....He must have been taken ill again.
     Yes.  There's something wrong.  I can't tell more than that, but you ought to go.
     I didn't stop to wonder how he knew...it had got to him.  It had reached him, and now it had reached me.
     Can you read me, Bryony?  You're a long way off.
     Yes, I can read you.  I'll go...I'll go straight away, tomorrow--today?  There was a flight at eight; they would surely take me...Then urgently, projecting it with everything I had:  Love?
     It was fading.  Yes?
     Will you be there?
     Again, denial printed on the dark; denial, regret, fading...
     Oh God, I said soundlessly.  When?
     Something else came through then, strongly through the fading death cloud, shouldering it aside; comfort and love, as old fashioned as potpourri and as sweet and sane and haunting.  It was as if the rose shadows on the ceiling were showering their scent down into the empty room.  Then there was nothing left but the shadows.  I was alone.
     I threw the sheet off and knotted a robe round me, and ran for the telephone.
     As I put a hand on it, it began to ring.



And here's a publisher's summary of the book:

After the tragic death of her father, Bryony Ashley returns from abroad to find that his estate is to become the responsibility of her cousin Emory.  Ashley Court with its load of debt is no longer her worry.  But there is something odd about her father's sudden death ...Bryony has inherited the Ashley 'Sight' and so has one of the Ashleys.  Since childhood the two have communicated through thought patterns, though Bryony has no idea of his identity.  Now she is determined to find him.  But danger as well as romance wait for her in the old moated house, with its tragic memories ...


So, what do you think?  Would you keep reading or is this a little too "far out" for you?

38 comments:

  1. I'm definitely intrigued by the blurb. Can't wait to hear your thoughts on it.

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    1. I think I will write a review of this book, even though I've read it more than once. I've never done a review.

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  2. I love Mary Stewart. I read all her books years ago. She's probably the main reason I like first person narratives so much.

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    1. Oh, Mary Stewart has been a favorite of mine for years and years. Since I was a teen. Her settings were always so interesting.

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  3. Omg I had never heard of this one but it sounds exactly like the kind of book I want to read! I think I may have to pick this one up soon and I love the old cover! Thanks for sharing :) I hope you have a great week!
    My Tuesday post
    Juli @ Universe in Words

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    1. Juli, you are probably a little young to know about this author. Romantic suspense at it's vintage best.

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  4. I like the intro and this would definitely be a nice change of pace.

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    1. And a change of pace is nice now and then.

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  5. I'd need to read a bit more to be sure, but I liked the opener.

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    1. It's an oldie but a goodie in my house. LOL

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  6. I do like this opener and this is an author I'd love to revisit. Thanks for sharing :-) Here is my Tuesday post https://cleopatralovesbooks.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/first-chapter-first-paragraph-april-21/

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    1. I love Mary Stewart and have for so long. Vivid settings.

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  7. It resonates with me. Hope you enjoy it.

    My Tuesday post: http://www.bookclublibrarian.com/2015/04/first-chapter-first-paragraph-103.html

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  8. I like the opening paragraph so I'd definitely keep reading. It sounds like a book is enjoy.

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    1. I think you probably would like this one, Darlene, even though it is an older book - like from 20+ years ago. LOL

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  9. Yum.... It's now on my list of hope-to-read's.

    Enjoying "A Cold White Sun" at the moment.

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    1. Tessa, you'd like this one I bet. Glad you are enjoying A Cold White Sun.

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  10. Years ago I read most of Mary Stewart's books, but this one doesn't ring a bell. I love the idea that Bryony can communicate via her thoughts. Great plot idea.

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    1. Margot, this is one of the later books. Not sure when exactly, but well after some of her more famous ones.

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  11. I don't think this one is for me, but glad you are enjoying an old favorite.

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  12. You've caught my interest! I love the opening you shared and from the blurb, I'm even more curious. I have never read anything by Mary Stewart before.

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    1. Mary Stewart was a writer I loved as a teen and into my early 20's. She wrote lovely romantic suspense, usually set in such beautiful locations. One of my all time favorites.

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  13. I don't usually re-read very many books, but there's always something really fun and nostalgiac about going back and re-reading a really old favourite. I do that at least once a year with We Have Always Lived In The Castle, and The Collector.

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    1. Yes, it just very comforting, isn't it?

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  14. I have not read Mary Stewart in decades, but I think it would be fun to have a MS marathon. I don't even remember which ones I read--could have even read this one; at least, the titles rings a bell. :)

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    1. A Mary Stewart marathon. That's an idea. I may take some time this summer to do a month of rereads or something like that. I'm thinking about it.

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  15. Sounds like a good gothic tale. Enjoy! Thanks for coming by!

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  16. I read lots and lots of Mary Stewart when I was young. Mary Stewart was one of my mom's favorite writers. I've always wanted to reread one of my mom's favorite gothics, The Moon-Spinners. Maybe for the upcoming Readathon?

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    1. Oh, yes, The Moon Spinners. They made that movie adaptation that starred Hailey Mills. Did you ever see that?

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  17. This one sounds a little too strange for me. I hope you enjoy it though. Girl Who Reads

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  18. Wow, it's been a long time since I read anything by Mary Stewart. I would keep reading this.

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    1. Mary Stewart is definitely a vintage author, but I still love her books.

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Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy to hear your thoughts and will respond as soon as I can. Happy Reading!