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Friday, September 30, 2011

Upcoming Reviews

I've had a rush of review requests lately!  It's all very exciting, and I am extremely grateful!

Love Potions - Michelle McCleod

Fire Season - VH Folland

Afterlife - Naomi Clark

Talon of the Unnamed Goddess - JR Tomlin, CR Daems

Modern Women - Ruth Harris

The Kult - Shaun Jeffrey

Whirl - Emma Raveling

Twi Harder - Lacy Maran, Kevin Michael

Gastien (Part 1) - Caddy Rowland

I also have a couple library books and several galleys to read.  This is a very exciting time for me, since my blog is not even a month old.  Thank you to all the authors so far for entrusting me with your work, and to my readers for giving me a chance :)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Playing With Fire - Katie MacAlister


Title: Playing With Fire (Silver Dragons #1)
Author: Katie MacAlister

Published: 2008

Format: Print copy, borrowed from library.

From Goodreads:
Gabriel Tauhou, wyvern of the silver dragons, has found the one woman who can withstand his fire. Too bad May Northcott is already bound to a demon lord. But when the demon orders May to steal one of Gabriel’s treasures:An immensely important relic of all dragonkin— Gabriel has to decide which to protect: his love or his dragons.


First Chapter Impression?
First off, this book sounds interesting.  Twins, and one is a naiad.  I had to look this up: its basically an elemental being, a water nymph according to one dictionary I looked at.  This is described later, but I just didn't know in the beginning. In this case, her name is Cyrene.  The other twin, May, is a cat burglar - and not a naiad.  She seems very street smart.  Cyrene - not so much.  Cyrene seems like a bubbly valley girl.  Interesting to see they are immortal. 


More thoughts?  At first, Magoth seems kind of sexy.  I wonder if he is actually an evil demonlord, or just downright misunderstood?


Moving on...


Gabriel, he is the wyvern (another term I had to look up - two legged dragon with wings) of the Silver Dragons Sept.  He is described as having a goatee and dreadlocks, and very sexy with a silky voice.  However, I can't help but picture him as Bruno Campos for some reason.  I think this is cause of the vampire in Twilight with the dreads.  I don't know, its my own wierd association.  But the author's description is wonderful, you instantly get the impression that he looks like the human version of a dragon.


Ok, so that's all in the beginning of the book, my first impressions.  Wrongo!!!!!!  Some stuff I was dead on with, like Cyrene being kind of bubbly and not so much street smart.  As it turns out, May is a doppelganger created from the image of Cyrene.  Cyrene gave up a personality trait to create her - common sense.  This is clearly evident right off the bat!


As I've stated time and again, I don't like to give up spoilers.  Even if you try not to read them, inevitably you do.  Some people like the surprise.  


May gets herself into a bit of trouble, and while trying to get out of it, she and her twin meet a group of dragons (enter Aisling Grey).  I haven't read the Aisling Grey series (YET!!!) so this was my first introduction to Katie MacAlister's dragons, guardians, demons and mages...


I had just finished reading book #1 of the Dark Ones series from the same author, and I thought this may follow the same formula. This is definitely not the case! This book makes me say "Screw vampires, I want a dragon!!!"  And this is coming from a girl who has spent nearly $500 in the past to put together the perfect vampire costume. My only wish is that I had realized that it would be tied in with Aisling Grey, and I could have read that series first.  Minor thing to deal with.


Later on, after its discovered that May is in fact supposed to be Gabriel's mate, and he explains the importance of mating after May tells him she is bound to the demonlord, Magoth... well ladies, he is an alpha among alphas.  An absolutely wonderful quote to show his immediate devotion, "His eyes promised so much. 'I will move the heavens and earth if you so desire.'"  How freaking wonderful is that?!?!  It's pretty wonderful!   And then when this doppelganger and this Silver Dragon commence with the nakedness.... let's just say they are definitely going to need to invest in fire extinguishers!  The lovin' scenes were very hot without being overly graphic.  If you are after a novel that overuses all the sexual words, this isn't it.  But you definitely feel like you are right there in the moment.  But more important than the sex, you really feel Gabriel's devotion, and you are just waiting for them to profess their undieing forever and ever love for each other. 


Then we come to the trouble in the book, the issue we have to overcome for our heroes to be together.  I really don't know what to say without giving away too much... Watch who you trust, trust those you don't know if you can, keep an eye on your group at all times, and believe in....everything :)


All in all, I really enjoyed this book.  I read through it like it was on fire, no pun intended! And I am so glad it is not 2008 (when it was published) so I don't have to wait for #2.  I just have to find it!  There is a cliffhanger, as with all books in a series and as soon as I publish this review I am going to look up where I can get #2, Up In Smoke


Oh, and on a side note, I'm also on a hunt now to look up fan art on the Silver Dragon's emblem.  Definitely a fan of fan art here :)


Oh, and one last thing.  A great song for this book? Evanescence, Bring Me to Life

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

No Dark Sarcasm In The Classroom....

Ok, so the title of this post happened cause I had a Pink Floyd fest in the car on the way home from work today.  And my three year old daughter told me to turn it louder :0)  I couldn't be more proud!

And then it made me think of the Black Dagger Brotherhood.  All through that series I hear Pink Floyd going as a soundtrack in my head.  When Lash is being a ...ahem, d.b. and has Xhex kidnapped, I hear him playing Pink Floyd "Dirty Woman" in the background.  Or when Zsadist (my one true love, btw) is going through some of his emotional stuff, I hear "Empty Spaces".  I could go on and on how Pink Floyd is just perfect for the BDB.

Then I started noticing I do this with a lot of books.  In the Chase Brothers series from Lauren Dane I got on a total country kick, and every time they when to the bar or the Tonk I could hear Dierks Bently "Am I the only one (who wants to have fun tonight)".  And that whole series just set me off on a country kick, listening nonstop. It was a perfect sound track for me.

But its more than that.  I also cast the characters for my wishful thinking movie version of the books.  Like Wrath in the Black Dagger Brotherhood is totally Peter Steele.

And Rhage is Jason Lewis (from Sex and the City fame)
And Tohrment could totally be played by Liev Shriber 
And well, a young Sebastian Bach for Phury, And Xhex would totally be Pink, when she had black hair!

I could go on and on, I do this for most every book I read.  I don't mean to, it just happens.  

So please, I'm dieing to know.... who would you pick for what role, or what music would you pick for a soundtrack, and why?  

Sunday, September 25, 2011

A Girl's Guide to Vampires - by Katie MacAlister


Title: A Girl's Guide to Vampires
Author: Katie MacAlister

Published: 2003
Format:  Print copy borrowed from library

From Fictfact.com:
Joy Randall's Top 5 Tips for Vampire Hunters: Location, location, location. Vampires won't be caught dead (ha!) in places like discos, ten-minute lube shops, or Switzerland. Remember, if you wouldn't be there, neither would a bloodsucker. Trust your eyes. You know the handsome, annoyingly arrogant, self-assured man in the shadows with long hair and a cleft in his chin? He's your vampire. No matter how tempting it might be, do not "accidentally" acquire a paper cut on your finger and suggest your vampire kiss it to make it better. Play it cool. Don't offer to accompany your prince of the night on the talk-show circuit, and whatever you do, don't offer him your heart! Most of all, remember: being a vampire is nothing to laugh about.


Ok, so I finished this book in the weeeee hours of the night, half asleep, but I just had to get to the end.

At first I was kind of iffy, I wasn't sure this was the book for me.  Sure, the main character, Joy, had a lot of snarky one liners that I just love.  But there seemed to be a lot of confusion.  One moment Joy suspects person A is a Dark One (vampire, if you will) the next moment she suspects someone else, and so on and so forth.  There were a few times I suspected several different and multiple people.  One of my first instincts was right. But being inside her mind... well, it just kind of felt like it was all over the place.

But why did I like this book?  Raphael St John.  Yummy.  He made me wish this book had pictures, for oh so many reasons.  Ladies, I'm sure you understand :)  But even aside from that, he's an alpha male.  Gotta love that!! A tattooed European alpha male.  He's cool, calm, collected.  He's strong and he's got a secret.

I'm going to read the second book, I'll even go so far to reserve it at the library. I just checked, and as it turns out it is about... oh, you almost got me there.  I can't tell you!!  That may (or may not?!?) spoil this book?

Friday, September 23, 2011

Sweetwater Springs - by Alex Taylor Wolfe

Author: Alex Taylor Wolfe

Published: 2011

Format: PDF provided by author for review.  Also available on Amazon. 
  
From Amazon:

In the spring of 1900, Katie O’Hare returns to Sweetwater Springs ten years after being orphaned by a murderous act that left her with nothing but an old pocket watch and scattered memories. Reluctantly she begins to fall for Tyler Reynolds, a rugged young cowboy with a troubled past. As their romance deepens, they find themselves tragically connected to a secret that puts their love and their lives in danger.

This was the first historical romance I've read in quite some time.  I found it to be a wonderful re-introduction to the genre.  Here we have the story of Katie, returning to where her life was forever changed.  

Immediately I liked Katie.  She seemed mature beyond her actual teen years.  We meet her as she is on a stage coach, coming around the bend into her old hometown.  She is filled with about every emotion you can imagine, returning after a decade of being away.  The author did a wonderful job of painting the scenery for us, I could almost feel myself craning my head to see around the corner in anticipation!

We get to see Katie reintegrate herself into some semblance of a reality.  And then she meets Tyler Reynolds.  Welcome, rugged, handsome, sexy cowboy! 

Katie and Tyler definitely have their share of ups and downs, miscommunications and misunderstandings.  And boy oh boy, that "getting to know you" stage really takes on a whole new meaning when it comes to these two new lovebirds.  There are several points where you think "awww heck, just throw in the towel you two, the odds are stacked against you!" while you are secretly hoping they can get through and over everything before them.

I found this story to have a large heart within it.  There was action, romance, drama, fear, love, hate... there was even some guns involved!  If you are into a clean romance, historical fiction, or historical romance, then this will be a nice read for you.  I enjoyed it very much!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Mosquito Song - M.L. Kennedy

Title: The Mosquito Song
Author: M.L. Kennedy

Published: 2011

Format: PDF provided by publisher for review.

From Tiny Toe Press:
Hunted by amateur assassins, confounded by a mysterious notebook, and vexed by modern technology, a derelict vampire travels to Chicago for answers. And maybe a little blood.




This is definitely a non-traditional story for a vampire.  The format its presented to the audience is a bit different, present tense first person.  He doesn't really describe himself as tall, dark, handsome, rich, exotic, worldly...none of the things we normally associate with the modern vampire.  This guy could be anyone.  He could be your neighbor from down the street.  I felt this lent a relatability to the story that made it a little more realistic.  I can easily feel the vampire's voice narrating this whole story, as he's driving down the I-90 on his roadtrip.  He's snarky and sarcastic, and he's a little bored, in my opinion.  I really enjoyed his wit and dry sense of humor.  Then someone finds him and tries to kill him.  The hunt is on.  


The cast of characters in this novella are all quite unique and interesting.  I had a couple favorites, and lets just say I will never look at a Rocket Pop popsicle in quite the same manner.  


The thing about a novella is that there are always a couple unanswered questions, that really would benefit from being explored further in a full length book.  But all in all, I felt this was a really good story.  I would recommend it, definitely.  At times it did feel like it wasn't exactly a vampire story, but just a story about a guy who is on the search for some answers.  And he's a little tougher than your average guy.  A little smarter.  And a bit more creative.  But heck, who says a vampire has to be a sparkly guy with a European flair, and enough money to make Bill Gates envious?  It was nice to read something different. 



WWW Wednesday 9-21-11


This is a weekly meme hosted by Should Be Reading
To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…
• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?
Add your comments below with your answers, and if you have a blog, give me a link to your WWW :)



What am I reading now?
The Mosquito Song, by ML Kennedy.  An interesting novella about a vampire.










What did I just finished reading?
The Calling, by Ashley Lynn Willis.  I loved that book, can’t wait for it to be published next month!









What will I read next?
That’s a tough question… I will probably finish A Girl’sGuide to Vampires, by Katie MacAlister.

Free Book Etiquette?

I am curious how everyone deals with free books?  I don't mean from giveaways or review purposes, but more like books from Pixel of Ink or NetGalley.  Do you grab as many as you can?  Pick and choose?  Let me know!  There's no prize or anything haha.

Personally, if its Pixel Of Ink, if its anywhere near a genre I may enjoy I grab it.  I have found many new authors that I adore this way.  But I am new to NetGalley, and I'm not really sure how to approach it.  There are so many books on there I'd love to read (and review!), but I am not sure what etiquette dictates in this sort of a situation?

And I suppose while I am on the subject, lets talk giveaways. Do you enter as many as possible, or pick and choose?

Monday, September 19, 2011

Spooktacular Giveaway Hop


I just registered to be a part of the "Spooktacular Giveaway Hop" hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and The Diary of a Bookworm !

This giveaway will run October 24-31.

Happy Halloween and Good luck!

The Calling - Ashley Lynn Willis



Published: To be published October 2011
Format: eArc, provided by author.

Synopsis:
Mandy Hardy lost more than a breast to cancer; she lost her fiancĂ© when he dumped her a week before her mastectomy. Her ego bruised and her self-esteem battered, Mandy’s sure she’ll never fall in love again. 

Justin Seward is a headstrong Coast Guard Rescue Swimmer with a heart of gold and the supernatural ability to command the seas. He had to hide his feelings while Mandy was engaged to his best friend. Now that she’s free, he’s vowed to make her his.

Together, they may hold the key to each other’s salvation. But when Justin’s past catches up with him, and Mandy’s ex-fiancĂ© wants vengeance, they realize they might not live long enough for happily ever after

Right away I was excited to read this book.  I’ve read a lot of PNR, and this sounded like a premise that was totally new to me.  I was completely right!  I loved it!  Seriously, I started it Saturday morning and finished it Sunday morning – I couldn’t put it down!  And just a moment here to acknowledge the cover – it’s sweet and beautiful and I love the concept that the man is made of water.  I would love to see some fan art someday depicting his tattoo!

First thing, first chapter we learn just what type of strong, stand up man Justin is.  And we get a hint of what’s to come.  The author really made me feel like I was right there doing a Coast Guard rescue with him.  I could feel the fear of the people being rescued, feel the splashing cold of the water, and the courage of our hero.

Then Mandy and Justin reunite.  I like that this wasn’t a situation where they meet on day one and are forever soul mates on day two.  A good fire doesn’t start with an explosion, it starts with a spark.  This book definitely delivers on its promises.

There was a steady build up to the climax.  No pun intended, because those steamy scenes were certainly steamy! A single event caused a whirlwind of events and it left my daughter begging me to come play hide and seek in her room that went something like this: “mommy, come play hide and seek” and I replied “OK, I will – go hide and wait for me” and I didn’t go seek!  I just had to find out what was going to happen next!  (Yes, I did eventually play the game with her for those that may be worried ;) )

And then this story ended with a very well written epilogue, which made me so happy.  So many books just forego the epilogue altogether.  I am definitely not one of those people who likes to make my own ending up. 

All in all, I just want to say again that I loved this book.  So click on the link, or in my sidebar and show the author some love. 

This is a story that I’d love to see built into a series!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Can't make up my mind which to start!

  So I have a ton of books ready to read.... and I keep getting more.  There are 3 more in my mailbox at home from the bookswap!

So here are my choices on what to read:


Envy, JR Ward

Ok, I love love love JR Ward.  I buy her books, full price paper editions, brand new....and loan them to my friends with serious threats of violence if they are not returned quickly and in great condition.  I know this book is going to be great.






A Girl's Guide to Vampires, Katie MacAlister

I basically know nothing about this series.  I got this from the library last night.  Some of the others in the series looked damned interesting, but you have to start at the beginning.  I did check goodreads from my Blackberry, so I know this has good reviews.  I'm sure it will be a fun read.




Playing with Fire, Katie MacAlister

This is another one from the library.  I don't know anything about this author.  But again, this has good reviews and the series looks interesting.







Thanks for the Books Blog Hop


I just signed up for the "Thanks for the Books Blog Hop" hosted by Livre De Amour (Books of Love). You can too!  Click on the links, and stay tuned!!  

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Amazon subscription service could rewrite book industry - Yahoo! News

Amazon subscription service could rewrite book industry - Yahoo! News:

'via Blog this'

Interesting, but I was just looking at some other sites today that already do this- so its not even new in the realm of books. However, who has a book presence like Amazon (and surely B&N to follow)

Fated Encounter - JA Belfield

Title: Fated Encounter
Author JA Belfield

Format: ebook, from Goodreads group: [Paranormal Romance & Urban Fantasy Fanatics!] Read to Review


From Goodreads:
One glimpse. That scent. There. Right there. Could it be … her?

The female within Sean Holloway’s dreams is real, and he intends to see her face even if it means hiding behind a women’s lingerie rack to do it.

With curiosity burning too hot for him to ignore, Sean turns an ordinary family errand into the chance of a lifetime only to be interrupted time and again.

In this companion piece to Darkness & Light, see Jem the way Sean saw her for the very first time.

Just how close is Sean willing to get before he’ll take fate into his own hands?

Enough to make the impossible come true … maybe. 


Deadly Gift - Heather Graham

Title: Deadly Gift
Author: Heather Graham

Pages:400
Format read: borrowed print copy from library

From Goodreads:
Caer is spending this Christmas among strangers. Brought to Newport, Rhode Island, from her native Ireland to nurse ailing millionaire Sean O'Riley, she's living a life few can imagine. But money can't hide the tension between O'Riley's trophy wife, his paranoid daughter, the eccentric aunt in the attic and the staff members who run the house.
When O'Riley's business partner goes missing, family friend Zach Flynn arrives. Determined to help him solve the case, Caer becomes enmeshed in a mystery that weaves together the sins of the past with one family's destiny…and a spirit that watches the mansion, possessing a deadly gift.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

9-11 Anniversary

We all probably remember where we were that day.  I know I do. I was at work, I even remember what I was wearing.  I was able to watch it live on tv while I was there.  Panicked and shaking, worried about a friend who worked in the area.  The moment I was able to reach him and know he was ok was a gigantic relief.   But following that was such sorrow, such a sense of loss.  I can't even imagine how hard it would be to live there, to see it all first hand.  My heart definitely goes out to all that were there, to all that helped, and to everyone we lost that day.  
World Trade Center Towers, Pentagon, Flight 93
You are not forgotten. 

Girl On A Laptop

Title: Girl On A Laptop
Author: Russ Cooper
Format: Kindle

From Amazon:
A girl hiding under a brass bed with a laptop sends a desperate message to a stranger on New Year's Eve.

But is her plea for help real, or a drunken computer prank--and can young Phoebe afford to take the chance that there might be a madman on the loose?






Thursday, September 8, 2011

Dirty Little Secret




Dirty Little Secret is a weekly meme hosted by Under the Covers. Every Thursday we get to know other bloggers and our readers more intimately by asking them a question hoping to reveal their dirty little secrets.


This weeks question:

Complete the following sentences with fictional character names:

I would have a one night stand with...
I would marry....
I would like to be sandwiched between....
I would turn bi for...

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Jigsaw - Ted Brogden


Jigsaw by Ted Brogden
340 Pages, Published January 2011
Format read:  Kindle, purchased by myself

From Goodreads:

Even in a drunken stupor it is hard for airline captain, Cape Thomas to ignore his recurring vision of a beautiful woman and the swaddled baby she holds. On a rare, sober day he begins a casual search through college yearbooks and yellowed courthouse records in hopes of finding the one who got away. Instead, an unrecorded codicil suggests their one union was fruitful and reveals a possible heir to an old-moneyed family used to scams and scammers making claims against the estate. After run-ins with a cabal of bankers, lawyers, in-laws, outlaws, and even the F.A.A. Cape begins to put the pieces of the puzzle together...

Waiting On Wednesday 9-7-11



"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:



WWW Wednesday 9-7-11


This WWW is hosted by Should Be Reading. To play, just answer the questions and link back to Should Be Reading (click picture to go to their page!)

To play along just answer the following three (3)
questions…

• What are you currently
reading?


• What did you recently finish reading?

• What do you think you’ll read next?







What am I currently reading? Right now I am reading the third installment
of the Flynn Brothers Trilogy, Deadly Gift by Heather Graham. This is the
story of Zach Flynn, the youngest of the brothers. I am having a tad bit
harder time getting into it, but I think that is only because I am anxious
for the action to start. Heather Graham is a new author to me, and I am
really digging this series!


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Deadly Night - Heather Graham


Title: Deadly Night
Author: Heather Graham


Format read: Print copy, borrowed from library


From Goodreads:
The Flynn brothers have inherited more than a New Orleans plantation. They've inherited a ghostly presence… and a long-kept secret.
Aidan Flynn, a private investigator and eldest of the Flynn brothers, scoffs at the haunted-house rumors—especially since Kendall Montgomery, a tarot card reader who has been living in the mansion, is the one to tell him the tale of a woman in white. But when he finds a human bone on the grounds and another by the river, Aidan delves into the dark history of the Flynn plantation.
Forced together to uncover the truth, Aidan and Kendall realize that a serial killer whose victims seem to vanish into thin air has long been at work…and that their own fates are about to be sealed forever unless they believe in the unbelievable.


I really liked this book. It was a great introduction to Heather Graham's work, and I will definitely read more books from her aside from this trilogy. I was expecting something totally different – I checked it out of the library in the Romance section. I wouldn’t classify this as a romancein my opinion, I would say Mystery or Ghost/Paranormal. Either way, it was a really good book, and the first book in the Flynn brothers trilogy. There were lots of twists and turns to make you think the “villain” was this person or that person, I never figured out who it was until it said who it was. Very clever! And it wasn’t who I thought it would be, so I really liked that (and I’m glad it wasn’t who I thought it was, cause I liked them!). On the “cons” side, I would have liked to see more romance or steamy stuff, but that’s just a personal preference. I don’t think the lack of it detracted from the story at all, in fact, if there were more it would have totally changed the book. I am looking forward to reading the next book in the trilogy!

This is the story of Aidan Flynn, the eldest of the Flynn brothers, and his brush with the paranormal as he and his brothers have just inherited an estate from a deceased relative.



Monday, September 5, 2011

Deadly Harvest - Heather Graham


Format read: Print copy, borrowed from library

From Goodreads: 
When a young woman is found dead in a field, dressed up as a scarecrow with a slashed grin and a broken neck, the residents of Salem, Massachusetts, begin to fear that the infamous Harvest Man is more than just a rumor. But out-of-town cop Jeremy Flynn doesn't have time for ghost stories. He's in town on another investigation, looking for a friend's wife, who mysteriously vanished in a cemetery.
Complicating his efforts is local occult expert Rowenna Cavanaugh, who launches her own investigation, convinced that a horror from the past has crept into the present and is seducing women to their deaths. Jeremy uses logic and solid police work. Rowenna depends on intuition. But they both have the same goal: to stop the abductions and locate the missing women before Rowenna herself falls prey to the Harvest Man's dark seduction.
I liked this book more than the first book, Deadly Night. I felt the action was pumped up, the drama was pumped up. I liked the characters more.

Jeremy Flynn, the middle Flynn brother, has come up to MA to help his friend and ex-partner find his missing wife. While there he and the woman he swore to himself that he should stay away from, Rowenna, become involved in an investigation on a larger scale than they had initially expected.