Saturday, December 27, 2008

2009 TBR challenge

I did not finish this challenge last year. I was only three books short of finishing the 2008 TBR Challenge. Let us try again this year.

The rules developed by MizB

* the challenge is to read 12 TBR books in 12 months -- you can read those all in one month if you want, or one a month, or however you wanna do it.
* you need to have a list posted somewhere for others to see (even if it's in a comment here)
* you CANNOT change your list after January 1st, 2009!!!
* you can create an Alternates list of MAXIMUM 12 books, if you want, in order to have options to choose from (you can read these in place of books on your original list).
* audiobooks and e-books ARE allowed
* re-reads are NOT allowed, as they aren't TRUE "TBRs"
* you CAN overlap with other challenges

If this is something that you would like to participate in you can sign up at 2009 TBR Sign up.

Here is my TBR List for 2009:

1.This Heart of Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips **
2. Rebel by Benard Cornwell **
3. Queen Bees & Wanna Bes byRosalind WiseMan**
4. Flowers In The Rain by Rosamunde Pilcher ***
5. Hide and Seek by James Patterson ***
6. East and West by Gerald Green ***
7. Savage Sunrise by Cassie Edwards ***
8. The Last Chance Cafe by Linda Lael Miller ***
9. The Seventh Stone by Nancy Freedman ***
10. Air Force Wives by Ruth Walker ***
11. To Touch The Earth by Fran Kendall ***
12. In Broad Daylight by Harry N. Maclean ***

My Alternatives:
1. Comeback by Dick Francis ***
2. The Daughter of the Pangaran by David Divine ***
3. Midwives by Chris Behjalian
4. Life Of Pi by Yann Martel
5. Galileo's Daughter by Dava Sobel
6. Circle of Friends by Meve Binchy
7. A Purrfect Romance by Robin Lee Hatcher, Susan Wiggs
8. Potter Springs by Britta Coleman
9. The Gambling Man by Catherine Cookson
10. Cat-A-Lyst by Alan Dean Foster
11. The Baker's Apprentice by Judith Ryan Hendricks
12. Pigs in Heaven by Barbara Kingsolver

** Books from last year's TBR list
*** Books from last year's alternative list

Wish me luck and come back every so often to see if I can complete this challenge this year.

Happy Reading.

The Harlequin/Silhouette Romance Reading Challenge 2009

OK, One more challenge for me to do but I think that this will be a esay one for me to complete.

Guidelines according to Yvonne:

All of the books have to be from either the Harlequin or Silhouette imprint. It doesn't matter which one.
The challenge is...
1) Read 1 book with a holiday theme.
2) Read 1 book by an author you never read before.
3) Read 1 book with one of these words in the title - wedding, marriage, husband or wife
4) Read 1 book set in a place you've never been before.
5) Read 1 book with a body of water in the title (i.e. water, lake, river, island, etc.)

That's a total of 5 books for the year.

A few additional things...

1) You can change books in the middle of the year, nothing is written in stone!
2) Books used in this challenge may be used in other challenges.
3) Books can be in any format - paper, audio, ebook.
4) Please sign up by commenting at The Harlequin/Silhouette Romance Reading Challenge blog

Here is my tentative list:

1. First-Time Valentine By Mary J. Forbes/Silhouette Special Edition(If you could not guess this is my Holiday theme)

2.Single-Dad Sheriff by Amy Frazer/Harlequin Super Romance (Author I have not read yet.)

3. Husband in Training by Christine Rimmer (book with one of these words in the title - wedding, marriage, husband or wife)

4.His Mysterious Ways by Amanda Stevens/Harlequin Intrigue (Place I never been before. A Central American Jungle and Long Island, New York. OK, I have been to the state of New York. But never to Long Island.)

5. ??????(A book with a body of water in the title (i.e. water, lake, river, island, etc.)

Happy Reading

2009 Suspense & Thriller Reading Challenge

OK, I have decided to do this reading challenge as well. Between my books at home and the library I should be able to find enough books to complete this challenge.

Guidelines according to J. Kaye:

* Read TWELVE (12) different sub-genres of thrillers in 2009.
* You do NOT need to select your books ahead of time. Also, you may change as you go.
* Your books can crossover into other challenges

For the complete guidelines and list of all the different sub-genres please visit J. Kaye's Book Blog at 2009 Suspense & Thriller Reading Challenge

My Tentative List:

  1. True Crime Thrillers: In Broad Daylight by Harry N. Maclean

  2. Serial Killer: Nothing Personal by Eileen Dreyer

  3. Religious Thrillers: Map Of Bones by James Rollins

  4. Medical Thrillers: Harvest by Tess Gerritsen

  5. Forensic Mystery: Craved in Bone by Jefferson Bass

  6. Legal Thrillers: The Chamber by John Grisham

  7. Romantic Thriller: Killing Kelly by Heather Graham

  8. Historical Thriller: The Samurai's Wife by Laura Joh Rowland

  9. Amateur Detective Mystery: Mew is for Murder by Clea Simon

  10. Action Thrillers: The Ripple Effect by Paul Garrison

  11. Stalking Thrillers:

  12. Cozy Mystery:

This list can change at anytime.

If you think this challenge is for you; go to J.Kaye's Blog to sign up.

Happy Reading

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Happy Holidays

December Celebrations
by Helen H. Moore
Every year at just this time,
In cold and dark December,
Families around the world
All gather to remember,
With presents and with parties,
With feasting and with fun,
Customs and traditions
for people old and young.
So every year,
around the world
In all lands and nations,
People of all ages love
December celebrations!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Blog Advent Tour

This is a nice way for the book blog community to celebrate the Holidays.

Each day anyone who wants to participate could take turns sharing a little treat with our friends here in blogland. For example it could be something about a holiday tradition, or a recipe, or a picture of a hot guy dressed as Santa, or a favourite Christmas memory, movie, book, song...anything you like. Even if you don't celebrate Christmas we would like to hear about what your family does during the holiday season, whether it be celebrating Hanukkah or Kwanzaa or anything.

If you want to participate today is the last day to sign up.

I plan on participating by reading what everyone writes and commenting on their posts. For the list of who is participating visit Reading Adventure at Blog Advent Tour.
Isn't the button great. Alex from Le Canape created it for Marg at Reading adventure.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

My Home State Authors

OK I have to admit that I did not realize that my home state of Missouri had so many authors living in it. Of course I was aware of Missouri most famous author Mark Twain. I also knew of a few others Suzann Ledbetter, Eileen Dreyer, Emilio Corsetti III and Janet Daley. But I was surprised to find out that Laurell K Hamilton lives in St. Louis County.

I made this wonderful discover because I was thinking about joining J.Kaye's Suspense and Thriller Challenge and I was researching some books under inverted mystery and I came up with the author Rett MacPherson. As I was reading the synopsis of her book Died in the Wool, I found out that the setting was in the town of New Kassel, Mo. So I looked into Macpherson bio and found out that she lives in Arnold, Mo. and that her writing group has Laurell K. Hamilton in it. So I did some more research and found Missouri Romance Writers of America and found some more and one I read The Accidental Demon Hunter by Angie Fox. So I googled Missouri authors and I came up with Missouri Center of Books which state that there are nearly 500 authors currently living and writing in Missouri and the number may be higher because Angie Fox was not listed.

I don't know why I am surprised that so many authors live in Missouri and some of them famous even. I mean it's Missouri. ( I can say this because I born and raised in Missouri. I lived 30 miles outside of St. Louis and have relatives in Southwest Missouri close to Springfield.) I guess I knew there were authors in Missouri, but not so many and main stream authors at that. I don't know why I am so amazed. Who knew?
I guess we never give our home state the respect it deserves.

I guess now I have to see about Illinois Authors. I predict there will be more because of Chicago.

Maybe I should do an Authors In Your Home State challenge?
How many authors are in your home state?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

(Lizelia Augusta Jenkins Moorer)
Let us give thanks to God above,
Thanks for expressions of His love,
Seen in the book of nature, grand
Taught by His love on every hand.
Let us be thankful in our hearts,
Thankful for all the truth imparts,
For the religion of our Lord
All that is taught us in His word.
Let us be thankful for a land,
That will for such religion stand;
One that protects it by the law,
One that before it stands in awe.
Thankful for all things let us be,
Though there be woes and misery;
Lessons they bring us for our good-
Later 'twill all be understood.
Thankful for peace o'er land and sea,
Thankful for signs of liberty,
Thankful for homes, for life and health,
Pleasure and plenty, fame and wealth.
Thankful for friends and loved ones, too,
Thankful for all things, good and true,
Thankful for harvest in the fall,
Thankful to Him who gave it all.
Happy Thanksgiving

Sunday, November 23, 2008

The House on Tradd Street

Welcome to Karen White's Pump Up Your Books Virtual Book Tour.

About the Book:

Practical-minded Charleston realtor Melanie Middleton hates to admit that she can see ghosts—even to herself. But now she’s going to have to accept it. Because an old man she met only days ago has died, leaving Melanie his historic Tradd Street home, complete with housekeeper, dog—and a family of ghosts anxious to tell her something…

Enter Jack Trenholm, a gorgeous writer obsessed with unsolved mysteries. He has reason to believe that some diamonds that went missing from the Confederate Treasury a century ago are hidden in Melanie’s new home. So he decides to turn the charm on with the new tenant, only to discover that he’s suddenly the smitten one.

But it turns out that Jack’s search has caught the attention of a possibly malevolent ghostly presence. Now, Jack and Melanie must unravel a mystery of passion, heartbreak, and even murder. And they must hurry, for an evil force—either dead or alive—lies in wait…

My Review:

4 stars: The interactions between Jack and Melanie were great. Melanie does not want to admit her attraction to Jack because he does not live up to what her ideal man should be. She keeps comparing him to Marc Longo, who is suave and sophisticated and Jack is just the ordinary guy.

This is considered a paranormal romance, but it is also a mystery. One of the ghosts that appear in the house is trying to show Jack and Melanie the answers they need and the other is trying to keep the answers hidden.

This author puts in a nice amount of humorous interactions between Melanie and Jack as well as with the rest of the characters. This keeps the book fun and lively.

I like how Karen White incorporates the city of Charleston and the restoration of The House into the story. I was able to understand the Charleston way of thinking and the importance of history and antiques are to the characters.

Another thing that stood out to me with this book was that there was no sex scenes. The one part were there was love making; it was alluded to. This was a nice change of pace. Everything implied.

Overall, I found this book to be an entertaining read. I am looking forward to reading the second book in this new series The Girl On Legare Street which will be out in November 2009.

About The Author:

Italian and French by ancestry, a southerner and a story teller by birth, Karen White has moved around quite a bit in her life. Born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, she has also lived in Texas, New Jersey, Louisiana, Georgia, Venezuela and England, where she attended the American School in London. She returned to the states for college and graduated from New Orleans’ Tulane University. Hailing from a family with roots firmly set in Mississippi (the Delta and Biloxi), White notes that “searching for home brings me to the south again and again.” She and her family now live near Atlanta.

It was love at first sight when White first visited Charleston and South Carolina’s lowcountry in 1995. She says it was “inevitable” that she would set several novels in the area, as she did with 2005’s The Color of Light, which Booklist praises as “an accomplished novel about loss and renewal.” Three years later, she returned to the there with The Memory Of Water and, now, to Charleston with The House On Tradd Street. Her love of the southern coast shows no sign of abating. Her next novel, The Lost Hours (May 09) is set in and around Savannah.
Happy Reading

Monday, November 17, 2008

Mailbox Monday

I have received the books form eHarlequin awhile ago. I finally have time to post about them.

Here is the list.

Debbie Macomber
1. Promise, Texas
2. The Manning Brides
3. The Manning Sisters

Susan Mallery
1. Sweet Spot
2. Sweet Trouble
3. Sweet Talk

Linda Lael Miller
1. The Man from Stone Creek
2. A Wanted Man

Janet Tronstad
1. Snowbound in Dry Creek
2. A Dry Creek Courtship
3. A Rich Man for Dry Creek/A Hero for Dry Creek two books in one

I told you I went crazy. I could not resist the 3.00 dollar sell. These are books that I have been thinking about buying for sometime but did not because of the cost. So that is way I could not resist.

I also received Mary Burton's Dead Ringer. I received it on the day that I was suppose to review it. Mary Burton's publicist sent me an anthology of Christmas stories one of which Mary Burton wrote called "Christmas Past" The anthology is called Silver Bells.
I think tomorrow, I will blog about the books that I got at my local library book sell this weekend.
Happy Reading.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

2009 Read Your Own Books Challenge

Here is one more challenge that has caught my eye and I think it will be easy for me to do.

Here are the rules for Read Your Own Book Challenge.
* set a goal for how many of your OWN books you’d like to read in 2009
* read from your own collection between January 1st and December 31st, 2009
* you do not have to make a list.
* you can read any book that comes into your possession and you plan to keep it during the year.
*you can overlap with other challenges.
*eBooks and Audiobooks count as long as they are from your own collection.
This is a very easy and simple challenge. If this challenge catches your eye go to Miz B Challenges You for further information and to sign up. Thanks Miz B for creating and hosting this challenge.

Happy Reading
I realized that I forgot to commit to how many books I will read off of my shelf. I will read 50 books off of my shelf. My goal is to read 100 books total for the year, I have already committed to 25 in the library challenge so that would be 75 books and that leaves me 25 books to play with. Just in case Pump Up Your Book Promotions ask me to review any books. Will that is the plan. Let us see if it works.

Romance Reading Challenge 2009

I have found another challenge. It is the Romance Reading Challenge. This one should be easy for me because most of the books I read are romance.

Read on for the rules: (from the bookworm blog)

1. Now, "Romance" isn't limited to steamy Harlequin novels. There is a huge selection of books in this category such as contemporary romance, historical romance, romantic suspense and paranormal romance to name a few. As long as the story has romantic love between the two main characters your selection will fit this challenge. The novels do not need to have a happy ending either, there can also be unrequited love.

2. Choose at least 5 novels read them between Jan 1st though Dec 31st 2009. You can change your choices at any time. Crossovers between other challenges are fine

3. Read them at your own pace in 2009 then go to The Bookworm and post the link to your review(s) there.

That is all there is to it. If this is challenge that you might think you would enjoy go over to The Bookworm and check it out.
Happy Reading

The 2009 Support Your Local Library Challenge

Here is another challenge that I am going to try to do. It is Support Your Local Library challenge. I think that I will try to read 25 books from my library.

Here is some information about the challenge below.

There are three sizes of challenges.

The first is to read 12 books from your local library in 2009.
The second is to read 25 books from your local library in 2009.
The third is to read 50 books from your local library in 2009.

You choose which of these challenges is the right one for you.

Here are the rules.

1) You can join anytime as long as you don’t start reading your books 2009.
2) This challenge is for 2009 only. The last day to have all your books read is December 31, 2009.
3) You can join anytime between now and December 31, 2009.
4) When you sign up under Mr. Linky, list the direct link to your post where your library books will be listed. If you list just your blog’s URL, it will be removed. If you don’t have a blog, leave the URL blank. (This time I remember to sign up using the correct link.)
6) The goal is to read 12, 25, or 50 books checkout from your local library in 2009. Please decide which when you sign up and don’t change it.
7)You do not have to decide on your books ahead of time. You can add or subtract from your list during the year.
8) These can be audios, downloads, children’s, and YA.

This information came off of J. Kaye's blog. If this challenge seems like it is one you would like to do or for more information go to The 2009 Support Your Local Library Challenge and sign up.

Happy Reading

Book List:
  1. How to Marry a Millioaire Vampire by Kerrelyn Sparks
  2. Too Big Too Miss by Sue Ann Jaffari
  3. Revenge of the Middle-Aged Woman by Elizabeth Buchan
  4. Kitty and The Manidnight Hour by Carie Vaughan
  5. The Tsarina's Daughter by Carolly Erickson
  6. Vamps and the City by Kerryelyn Sparks
  7. What Angels Fear by C.S. Harris
  8. The Curse of the Holy Pail by Sue Ann Jaffarian
  9. Evil Without a Face by Jordan Dane
  10. No One Lives Forever by Jordaon Dane
  11. Private Arrangements by Sherry Thomas
  12. Second Sight by Amanda Quick
  13. The Dragon Earl by Jade Lee
  14. Uneasy Lies The Head by Jean Plaidy

2009 Read and Review Challenge

Here is another challenge tha seems easy for me to do. It is called the 2009 Read and Review Challenge. It is sponsered by Miz B.

Here are the rules to this challenge.

*Review each book you read between January 1st and December 31st, 2009

*PLEASE keep your reviews clean & respectful ~ these books we read are the hard work of an author, and we don’t need to be mean. Even if you didn’t like the book, please try to find something you can say that would be encouraging to the author.

*Reviews can be as short, or long, as you wish

*You MAY overlap with other challenges

*eBooks and Audiobooks ARE allowed

*If there will be spoilers in your review, please note this in the subject line of your post so that those who don’t want to read them can skip that review.

If this challenge seems to interest you go over to and sign up.
Happy Reading

2009 100+ reading Challenge

Before my children wake up and demand my attention. I have a little time to do some blogging.

Once again I have signed up for 100+ Challenge.

Here are the rules or as J. Kaye calls them guidelines:

1) You can join anytime as long as you don’t start reading your books prior to 2009.

2) This challenge is for 2009 only. The last day to have all your books read is December 31, 2009.

3) You can join anytime between now and December 31, 2009. 4) If you don’t have a blog, please join our Yahoo Groups.

5) When you sign up under Mr. Linky, list the direct link to your post where your 100+ books will be listed. If you list just your blog’s URL, it will be removed. ( I was not aware of this guideline. I know I wanted to do this challenge so I signed up without having a direct post to my 100+ list. Wait it gets better. I did it again. I went back to make sure I signed up again and I did not see my name so I signed up again without a direct link. When I scrolled down to comments I saw my comment. How stupid can one person be. I will blame too much stress at work. and that I have to share my computer with a 12 year old. Yuck!)

6) All books count: children’s, YA, adults, fiction, non-fiction, how-tos, etc. (I won't count children's book as I have to read books to children as part of my job.)

If this challenge seems interesting to you, you can go to J.Kayes blog and sign up. Just remember to sign up with the direct link to your 100+ book list. (He He He )

I guess I will post my books here. God I hope I got this straight.

I can't wait for January.
1. Rebel in Blue Jeans by Beverly Stowe McClure
2. Messiah Interviews: Belonging to God by Jerry J. Pollock, PH.D.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Just Some Random Thoughts

I have been working on my conferences for my preschool class. They went pretty well. I have been working on them off and on for a couple of weeks. I still have to put in some emails and update photos on our online assessment so that the parents can access information when they want. So now that life has settled down a bit I can focus on my books, my blogs, and challenges at least for a little bit. I will become busy again in December when I will be doing things with my daughter's brownie troop.

I am hoping I can finish the 100+ challenge. If I push it and read a lot of romances and cozy mysteries I just might make it. I have four days off for Thanksgiving and have nothing planned, because my husband has to work, but to read. So maybe I can do it.

I have found some challenges for 2009 that I think I can complete. I at least want to read some of the books from the challenges not like Decades 08. I did not read a one. So I have learned to stay away from literature challenges. But the funny thing is this was the challenge that got me excited about challenges and into blogging. But I did not even try to read any.

I have been blogging for about a year now. My books have grown in numbers and I have read some great books. I have enjoyed working with Pump Up Your Book Promotions. I also have come across wonderful blogs and I have enjoyed reading what everyone has written.

After reading everyone's great reviews, I began to doubt my abilities of writing. Everyone's reviews seemed so much better than mine. So a lot of self doubt popped into my head. I even thought that I should stop reviewing. But I am enjoying the world of blogging. So I will keep plugging away in the hopes that I will get better.

What else is going on. My daughter is once again participating in Battle of the Books in Chicago. We are hoping that this year her school will get in the final three or to the stage. Each year they have gotten closer. Keep your fingers cross. If they do make it to the stage, I am not sure if I could handle it. I think I would be pee my pants in excitement and get an ulcer from the tension. But it would be worth it. I will post the book list at a later date.

Well, I believe that is it for now.

Happy Reading.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Dead Ringer: Book Spotlight

I need a mail demon slayer. (I have been reading demon slayer books lately.) The Chicago Post Office demons are at it again. I was suppose to review Mary Burton's new suspense thriller Dead Ringer, but the Chicago Post Office demons decided that they wanted to read the book first. I agreed to review the book in early October, but I never received it. But when I opened my mailbox today, the resent copy was there. So as soon as I have read it. I will post a review. You gotta love the Chicago Post Office demons. At least they like to read.

So instead of a review, it is a book spotlight. Just a little tease to get you excited about this new book which is in stores now or at Amazon .com.

About The Book:

Beside each body, he leaves a simple charm bearing a woman's name. Ruth. Martha. Judith. The victims were strangers to each other, but they have been chosen with the utmost care. Each bears a striking resemblance to Kendall Shaw, a local anchorwoman … each brutally strangled by a madman whose obsession will never end...

In front of the cameras, Kendall is the picture of stylish confidence. But at night she's haunted by nightmares in which she is young, alone, and filled with fear. Are these memories-or omens? Despite warnings from Richmond Detective Jacob Warwick, Kendall can't stop investigating the recent string of murders. She knows she holds the key to catching an obsessed psychopath-if he doesn't get to her first.

The deeper Kendall and Jacob dig into the victims' backgrounds, the more terrifying the discoveries. For from the shadows of the past, a legacy of evil has resurfaced. Every murder, every moment has been leading to Kendall. And this time, nothing will stop the killer making her his final victim.

If you want to read an excerpt of Dead Ringer check out Mary Burton's website.

After reading the excerpt, It seems like it will be an intense read. I want to learn more about the relationship between Detective Jacob Warwick and news reporter Kendall Shaw. I hope that this will be a I can't put this book down read.

About The Author:

Mary Burton confesses to a baking addiction and a fascination with the people who hunt serial killers. The former is genetic. The latter began during the twenty years that the Southside Strangler, D.C. Sniper and the Hampton Roads killers stalked her home state of Virginia. These killers terrorized residents and claimed twenty-six victims before their capture

Why did they kill? What demons drove them? How did they choose their victims? Burton’s questions led to inspiration and the USA Today best selling author began developing the characters whose horrific assaults would drive the plots of her romantic suspense novels I’M WATCHING YOU and DEAD RINGER.

Her commitment to realism in her writing has led to eye-opening interviews with local law enforcement, forensic seminars and the firing range. She is a graduate from the Henrico County Citizens Police Academy and attended Sisters in Crime’s three day Forensic University program.

Born and raised in Richmond, Mary Burton is an avid cook as well as baker, and even volunteered as a kitchen assistant at a local culinary school to hone her skills. When not writing and researching she can be found hiking, doing yoga and playing with her miniature dachshund puppies, Buddy and Bella. Currently, she is working on her next novel.

You can visit Pump Up Your Book Promotions to find reviews of this book, interviews with Mary Burton and guest blogging done by Mary Burton. You can also visit Mary Burton's Website for further information about this book.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Goddess of Spring by P.C. Cast

Carolina Francesca Santoro, known as Lina, owns Pani Del Goddess bakery. A trendy bakery in Tulsa, OK. After meeting with her accountant, she finds that she owes the IRS a large amount of money.

Lina has an idea on how to save her bakery. Going through cookbooks to develop the idea, she comes across an Italian Goddess cookbook. It seems to have the perfect recipe for idea to save the bakery.

As Lina follows the recipe, she conjures up the goddess Demeter. She has a plan of her own. She proposes that Lina exchange souls with her daughter Persephone, the Goddess of Spring. During the 6 months that they will be in each other bodies,Persephone will pay off the IRS dept threefold and Lina will give the Underworld some order and soothe the souls who are asking for a goddess of their own.

Lina meets Hades, the handsome, sexy, brooding Lord of the Underworld. Hades causes sparks to be ignited in Lina's Heart. But can the God of the Underworld love a mere mortal woman.
3 Stars: I liked it.
I like the fact that Lina is a woman in her forties. It is not her body that causes everyone in the Underworld to love her but her soul. What a nice message in a society that is obsessed with looks.

The reason I did not give it 4 Stars was the ending. I don't want to give to anything away, but I felt that P.C. Cast left too much to the imagination, instead of telling us what happens in the intervening years with Persephone, Lina, Hades and the bakery. I am afraid to say too much. I don't want to spoil the ending if anyone wants to read it.

I will read more in the Goddess Summoning series. I enjoyed this take on romance. I also want to read the Partholon series which is also by P. C. Cast.
Which cover is your favorite? Hades or Persephone?
Happy Reading

Saturday, November 1, 2008

A New Rating System

Some one a while ago posted that I needed to have a rating system. I have been thinking about some type of system since. Something I like and also can convey what I mean. Waking up too early and unable to go back to sleep it came to me. I think that it will work for everyone.

5 Stars Awesome: Life was put on hold to finish it. Stayed up to late to finish it.
4 Stars I loved it
3 Stars I liked it
2 Stars Finished it, but it took forever to read.
1 Stars Unable to finish it

It is very rare for me to not finish a book. So if you see one star, you know that it was a bad book for me. I have found that a book I do not like; it takes forever for me to finish it. Even if I do not like a book, I have to see how it ends. There have been times when I have read the ending without reading the middle. Maybe I well give a book one and half stars if I do that again.

I hope this help everyone.

Happy Reading

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

I hope everyone has a Happy Halloween.
Don't steal all the good candy from your children.
And may your nightmares not be too scarey.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Sam' Quest: The Royal Trident

Welcome to Ben Furman's Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.
Samantha "Sam" Costas and Prince Buznor "Buzz" are back in another adventure. Sam goes back to the world world under Mile High Mountain; when the Crimson Crystal begins to glow. It indicates that Buzz is in trouble. When she finds Buzz, they have to go save King Kaylan. He is being held by the Pax, a new kind of enemy. The friends find the Originators, the keeper of the Crimson Crystal and the savior of the Awokian people. They end up helping the Originators in their defense against the Pax.

Sam's Quest: The Royal Trident is the second book in the Sam's Quest series by Ben Furman. I found to be just as enjoyable as the first book Sam's Quest for the Crimson Crystal if not more enjoyable.

I did have one problem with this book. I did not like that Sam's parents die. I feel that this is similar to other Young Adult fantasy I have read. Furman should have taken a risk and kept the parents alive. The parents could have moved to the farm so that Sam could for to the innerworld when needed.

Overall, I found The Royal Trident to be a good, fun and exciting adventure. I liked the new creatures that Furman incorporated into the story. Some of the creatures are the lenkas who are transparent water creatures and the Paxs which are the villainous big insects with a two-headed leader.

Sam is one tough cookie even if she does not see herself that way. She is able to handle herself very well in the final battle of the book. I can't wait for my daughter to read this series, because I believe that Sam is a good role model for her. I look forward to more of her adventures in the innerworld.

About The Author:

Ben R. Furman, former FBI counterterrorism chief, has drawn on this experience to write about high-tech terrorism, chemical, biological, and nuclear threats, and transnational criminal cartels. During his career he investigated kidnappings, extortions, bank robberies, led SWAT teams and was the FBI counterterrorism chief assigned to address threats against the United States by terrorists of all stripes. He also writes fantasy adventure novels with positive messages for the young adult, juvenile market and is the Rexus CEO, a corporation that conducts international corporate investigations involving industrial espionage, internal theft, business due diligence and background screening. You can visit his website at

Saturday, October 25, 2008

The Haunting of Hill House

This book is considered one of the best literary ghost stories written in the 20th century. According to wikipedia, Stephen King's The Shining was inspired by it. The Haunting of Hill House was originally published in 1959 by Shirley Jackson. This book also inspired two Movies The Haunting a 1963 version and a 1999 version, which departs from Jackson's story.

Dr. John Montague is a Doctor of philosophy. He also has a degree in anthropology. But he feels his true vocation is to analyze supernatural manifestations. He begins to look for a "true" haunted house. He then hears about Hill House and decides this is the house for him. He wants to bring a group of people together to live in Hill House and help investigate and document any supernatural manifestations. He writes to a group of people and only two show up. He also has to take into his party a representative of the family who owns the house.

The party encounters inexplicable noises and doors that close by themselves. One of the guests walks into her room and found blood splattered all over the walls and her clothes. Another guest thinks she is holding her roommates hand in terror and wakes up from sleep realizing she was holding another hand.

The House chooses one of the guest and slowly begins to posses the guest. She believe that she is becoming part of the House and the House wants her to stay.

Over all I did not find the book very scary. It was more of a psychological ghost story. It focused more on what the people were thinking and doing then what was scaring them. It was more of the reactions to the events and the what the house did to one person in particular. It took a while for me to complete this book. I was able to walk away and come back. I did not find it as scary or intense as I think a scary ghost story should be.

I have not read The Shining so I cannot compare it to The House of Hill Street. I have read scarier books; for example Dean Knootz's books and Amityville Horror.

Happy Reading

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

American Quest

Welcome to Sienna Skyy Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.
American Quest is a rousing contemporary novel filled with unforgettable characters, passionate relationships, dazzling magic and epic drama. It is the premiere of a quartet of novels that will capture your imagination and your heart.

Two supernatural forces - the benign Auxilium and the malevolent Pravus - are attempting to affect the balance of life on Earth. The mission of the Auxilium is to aid humanity in its quest to make the most of itself. Its "angels," a consortium of entities that work for a common purpose, offer various forms of assistance and protection, but cannot fight our battles for us.

The mission of the Pravus, however, is to destroy all that is good in humanity. Its "demons," led by an oligarchy of supreme despots known as Macul, regularly interfere in the affairs of man, actively seeking to undermine humanity's nobility and pursuit of enlightenment and evolution. For each of our noblest qualities, a Macul leads a team of lesser Pravus to destroy it.

For the most part, the opposing forces balance each other out. Occasionally, though, the stakes rise to a new level when a person imbued with extreme potential unites with another person of extreme potential. When a match of this sort occurs, humanity gains the opportunity to make major leaps - unless a Macul can subvert it. If the Macul succeeds, it will gain so much power that the entire world - humans, Auxilium, and all other Pravus alike - will become its plaything.

American Quest is the story of two lovers, Bruce and Gloria, whose intense passion for life and for each other has made them unwitting pawns in this cosmic battle. Enervata, the Macul who opposes romantic love, captures Gloria. To save her, Bruce must embark on a quest across America, armed with only the scantest of clues, to collect the Four Pillars of Humanity before he can battle the enormously powerful demon.

Several people join him on his quest, including his best friend, a rocker, a stand-up comedienne, a little old Italian lady, an old-beyond-her-years child, and a strangely visionary fortuneteller. The questers face challenges from Enervata's minions at every turn and struggle mightily in their quest to uncover the Pillars...all the while unsure of Gloria's fate.

At once a spirit-stirring fantasy, a moving love story, and an endearing tale of friendship and sacrifice, American Quest introduces a wonderful new storyteller to the public and presents us with a thrilling new vision of our world.

I had a hard time getting into this book, but I kept reading and it became better. I found the interactions between Gloria and the evil dark spirit Enervata unbelievable to me. They did not connect with me. I did not feel a bond with these two characters.

That said I will say that I found the quest that Bruce had to gone to find the four pillars of humanity to be thrilling. I was drawn in the search and battle for the pillars. I was intrigued about how Bruce was going to find the pillars and save Gloria. Of course this leads up to the final battle; where Bruce has to save Gloria and thus the world. I did like the intensity of the final battle.

American Quest is the first of four books in a series by Sienna Skyy. The next book in the series is Otherworld Quest.

New Publishing House:The Story Plant:
American Quest is the first novel published by the new publishing house The Story Plant. This new publishing house was greeted with excitement within the publishing and writing communities. Seen as a fresh approach to discovering new talent at a time when many houses area reducing the number of titles they publish, it's also the start of a unique partnership focused on nurturing authors from the grouping up. The Story Plan is founded by Peter Miller and Lou Aronica.

About the Author:
Sienna Skyy comes from a long line of storytellers, and from the moment she learned to speak she began telling tales of her own, many of which were reflections of the beautiful city where she lived. She got her start by exploring lyricism in the form of song, and was inspired the combination of literary fantasy and rock music that was prevalent in her early years. (Nowadays they call it classic rock.) She believes that art and music and literature are different forms of the same wonderful thing. She also believes that knights exist today though they’ve stopped wearing shining armor, and that magic is waiting just beyond the surface of the things we see. Sienna Skyy lives in Gotham City, and is surrounded by animals, of both the human and non-human variety. She is currently working on the next novel, Otherworld Quest.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Mailbox Monday

I received one book this week. I am to read it for Pump Up Your Book Promotions. It is called The House On Tradd Street. This is a short description. Melanie Middleton can see ghost. She has just inherited a house with a family of ghost. They have something to tell her. It sounds good.

I still have another book that I am to review for PUYBP that I am waiting to receive and I order a whole bunch of books form eHarlequin. I went a little crazy because the books were 3 dollars each. I will tell you more when I receive them.

Visit The Printed Page to see what others received in the mail.

Happy Reading

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Cold Rock River

Welcome to J.L. Miles Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.

Adie Jenkins begins to go into labor with her daughter. Willa Mae Satterfield is waiting at Adie's cabin and helps with the birth. As the labor progress it becomes more difficult. Adie asks about the notebook that Willa Mae carries. Willa Mae lends it to her to read. As Adie reads she discover a diary of a seventeen-year -old slave girl, Tempe Jordon. When life becomes overwhelming, she turns to the diary and reads about the life of Tempe.

Tempe writes about how her children were sold to the speculator man. She becomes determine to find her lost children. After "the freedom" comes Tempe searches for her children. She meets and marry another freed slave, Tom Barber. They have one daughter, Heart. But the diary raises more questions for Adie.

Willa Mae and Adie become close after Adie's daughter birth. Adie confides to Willa Mae about how her baby sister, Annie, survived choking on a jelly bean only to drown in Cold Rock River a few months later. Willa Mae tells her that her two children, Georgia and Calvin drowned in the same river. But she will not explain how or why it happened.

I loved this story about Adie Jenkins. I found Adie to be a wonderful character. She is a strong woman. Her life does not go as plan, but she perseveres. She becomes pregnant and marries her boyfriend, Buck. Nether she or Buck are ready to face the responsibility of marriage and parenthood. Buck gets a job at the local store and begins a "friendship" with the daughter of the store owner. Adie has to focus and try to keep her little family together.

J.L. Miles writing style is relaxed, which makes for easy reading. I found her characters easy to relate to. Miles was able to pull me in from the very beginning. She uses a foreshadowing technique that kept me reading. For example statements like "Basically, that's a good description of how events that led to my sorrow got started." I am thinking what! So I could not stop there; I had to keep reading to see what happens next. I did not put the book down until I finished it.

The references to canning and pies made me think of my grandma and all the canning and cooking she did. All I can say is country folk do know how to cook. There are recipes at the end of the book for those inclined to try them.

When you read Cold Rock River by J.L. Miles you will read Adie's story and Tempe's story. As you read the book these two stories merge to become one story.

I like this book so much that I will try to find J.L. Miles first book, Roseflower Creek.

About the Author:

Jackie Lee Miles, a resident of Georgia since 1975, hails from Wisconsin via South Dakota. She considers herself “a northern girl with a southern heart”. Her paternal grandfather was christened Grant Lee by her great-grandmother in honor of the many fallen soldiers on both sides of the Mason-Dixon line. Ms. Miles is a former D.I.A.L. Systems Engineer for Baker/Audio Telecom, one of the premier forerunners of voice mail. In addition to systems application, she provided voice tracks for several major companies, including Delta Airlines and Frito-Lay Corporation.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Darker Side

Welcome to Cody McFadyen's Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.

The Darker Side by Cody Mcfadyen is the third book in the Smoky Barrett series.

About the Book:
A lie, a long-ago affair, a dark desire- everyone has secrets they take to the grave. No one knew that better than FBI Special Agent Smoky Barrett. But what secret was a very private young woman keeping that led her to her very public murder? And what kind of killer was so driven and so brazenly daring that he'd take her life on a commercial airliner thirty thousand feed in middair, a killer so accomplished that he'd leave only a small souvenir behind?

These are the questions that bring Smoky and her handpicked team of experienced manhunters from L.A. to the autumn chill of Washington, D.C., by order of the FBI director himself - and at the special request of a high-powered grieving D.C. mother.

As a mother, Smoky knows the pain of losing a child - it nearly killed her once before. As a cop with her own twisted past, she takes every murder personally, which is both her greatest strength and her only weakness. Brilliant, merciless, righteous, the killer Smoky is hunting this time is on his own personal mission, whose cost in innocent human lives he's only begun to collect. For in his eyes no one is innocent; everyone harbors a secret sin, including Smoky Barrett.

Soon Smoky will have to confront a flawless killer who knows her flaws with murderous intimacy.

OK, it is almost 11:00 at night and I have to start this review all over. Somehow as I was getting ready to post, I lost my Internet connection and all that I had written was lost. So as I have to get up early and finish my lesson plan for work I will keep this review short.

Secrets are central theme to this book. We learn about Smoky's secret, which she has to come to terms with so that her relationship with the man she is seeing, Tommy, can move on to the next level.

The Serial Killer wants to be hunted. He leads Smoky and her team on a cat and mouse chase. They need to solve the clues before there is a next victim.

Cody McFadyen is a visual and detailed writer. He has done his research well. He makes everything believable.

I found The Darker Side to be a suspenseful read. I was one the edge of my seat as I read the book. I can't wait until book 4 comes out so that I can continue to read about Smoky and her team adventures.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Mailbox Monday

I did not think that I was going to write about getting any books in the mail this week. Then on Saturday, I found a box at my front door. I forgot that I order some books from Harlequin. I bought two and got one free.

Unmasked by Nicola Cornick: about a lady Robin Hood

The Queen's Lady by Shannon Drake: about a lady in waiting to Mary, Queen of Scots

Scandalizing the Ton by Diane Gaston: about Lady Wexin a widow who is with child. The Question is who is the father.

They are all historical.

I also received a work related book in the mail. From Lullabies to Literature : Stories in the lives of Infants an Toddlers by Jennifer Birckmayer, Anne Kennedy, and Anne Stonehouse. I normal don't include work related books; but I found out today that the bosses want us teachers to read this book. They must have received it in the mail as well. So I have to put off my other reads until I finish this book.

Visit The Printed Page to see what others received in the mail.

Happy Reading

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Shadow Man

After reading The Faces of Death by Cody McFadyen, I wanted to read the first book in the Smoky Barrett series. I went to the Library and checked out Shadow Man.

We met Smoky after she has been knifed and scarred, raped and her family is killed by a serial killer that her FBI team and her have been tracking. She is trying to decide if she should live or die; when she learns that her best friend from high school has been killed and that the killer tied her friend's daughter to the body and left the girl there for three days. Smoky receives a message from the killer taunting her. Something awakens in Smoky that she thought was died and she goes in search of the killer who calls himself Jack the Ripper 2.

After reading The Faces of Death, I had high expectations for Shadow Man. It did not live up to my expectations. The book started out slow. I had a hard time getting into the book but around page 200 things got better. The chase was on to find out who the killer was and stop him from killing again. Things became more intense and fast. I understand that this was Cory McFadyen's first book and he was still refining his writing style. I wish it had the same intensity as The Faces on Death.

I figured out who the killer was early and then I made the most cardinal sin a reader can do. I read ahead to see if I was right and I was. Reading ahead can be a good thing or a bad thing in this case it was a bad thing. It made a slow book slower.

If you want to read a book in the Smoky Barrett series, either read the series in order or start with The Faces of Death and not read the Shadow Man. Wow I did not realize how much I did not like this book until I wrote the review. Sorry Cody.

But I did love The Faces of Death. You can check out my review at I just began to read the third book in the Smoky Series, The Darker Side. So far it is good. A murder on an airplane and no body saw anything. How does that sound, chilling?

Happy Reading

Monday, September 29, 2008

Mailbox Monday

I received only one book by mail this week. It is the book I have been waiting for by The Darker Side by Cody McFadyen . Also my mom came up this weekend and delivered some books that she thought I would enjoy. Here is the list.

  1. 1. So Dark the Night by Margaret Daley
  2. 2. Suzanne's Diary For Nicholas by James Patterson
  3. 3. Bearing Gifts by Aimee Thurlo
  4. 4. City of Bones by Michael Connelly
  5. 5. Dangerous Minds by LouAnne Johnson
  6. 6. Gallagher's Lady by Carol Jerina
  7. 7. Compromised Security by Cassie Miles
  8. The Hart Brothers:Rey & Leo by Diana Palmer
  9. Desperado by Diana Palmer
  10. Rhett Butler's People by Donald McCaig

I went to the Salvation Army and bought some books. I know that this is for books received in the mail, but I am including them anyway. I love going to the Salvation Army and looking for books. You never know what you will find. You can find some out of print books that you have been looking for or newer books. And in some cases you will fine nothing. And the price is nice; 50 cents for paperback and 1.00 dollar for hardcover. Here is the list.

  1. The Last Precinct by Patricia Cornwell
  2. Black Notice by Patricia Cornwell
  3. Two for the Dough by Janet Evanovich
  4. Innocent As Sin by Elizabet Lowell
  5. The Carriage House by Carla Neggers
  6. Devices and Desires by P.D. James
  7. Cold Sassy Tree by Olive Ann Burns
  8. Harvest by Tess Gerritsen

I also bought H.P. and the Sorcerer's Stone. I have the paperback already, but I wanted the hardcover. It only cost 1.00 so why not.

While I was at Target I found this book that I thought would be fun. It is called The Abstinence Teacher by Tom Perrotta. It is about Ruth Ramsey who is the sex ed teacher and her openness is not appreciated by all of her students and their parents. Tim Mason who is a born again Christian. But when these two people begin talking to each other instead of disagreeing a surprising friendship begins.

I hope you all don't mind that I included every book I got this week not just the one I received in the mail.

Visit The Printed Page to see what others have received in the mail.

Happy Reading

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Lost Diary Of Don Juan

Welcome to Douglas Carlton Abrams' Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.

This is a story about how Don Juan, the world's greatest lover learns about true love. The Lost Diary of Don Juan by Douglas Carlton Abrams is a historical fiction set in Seville, Spain during the Inquisition.

Don Juan is given a diary by his mentor Don Pedro the Marquis de la Mota. Don Juan begins to reflect on his past and how he became a libertine. Don Juan writes about how he was a orphan and raised by nuns until he got caught with his first lover. He then went to live in a monastery, but after a severe beating he left. He runs to Seville were he learns to be a burglar. He then meets the Marquis. The Marquis trains him to be a spy and then a libertine. He finally encounters his most challenge adventure; learning that he can love just one woman.

There are sex scenes, but they were not what I expected. Considering this is about the world's greatest lover the sex scenes were very tame. I have read worse in romance novels.

Don Juan is a very charming and likable character. He has learned not to talk about the women he sleeps with. For a libertine he does have his ethics. He keeps their secret. He also has learned to appreciated beauty in all women.

Abrams writing style is easy to read. When he writes about the Inquisition and the torture we experience it. The final fight scene is very intense and visual. Abrams has some surprises that are not reveled until the end and I did not see them coming. I like that, unpredictable.

I discovered this book last year. After reading about it on the website I wanted to read it. Thanks to Pump Up Your Book Promotions, I got the opportunity. I am glad to say that The Lost Diary of Don Juan lived up to my expectations.

Overall, I found The Lost Diary of Don Juan to be entertaining. If you are looking for a fun quick read this is the book for you.

About the Author:

Douglas Carlton Abrams is a former editor and the coauthor of a number of books on love, sexuality and spirituality. This novel, his first, has been published in twenty-eight languages. He lives in Santa Cruz, CA, with his wife and three children.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Mailbox Monday

I am very excited that I have received some books in the mail that I can blog for this meme.

Last week I received Cold Rock River by Jackie Lee Miles. This is one of the October books that I will review for Pump Up Your Book Promotions.

I was pleasantly surprised last week when I opened up a package. I thought it was going to be one of the books for Pump Up Your Book Promotions. Instead it was a ARC for Any Given Doomsday by Lori Handeland. I did not request it. It just showed up. OK, maybe I won it from one of Handeland's contest one her website.

Today, I came home from work I had not one but two packages waiting for me. One was American Quest by Sienna Skyy. This is another book I am reviewing for Pump Up Your Book Promotions. I am still waiting for the third book the new Cody McFadyen The Darker Side.

The other package of books came form Harlequin. The Deadliest Strain by Jan Coffey, The Playboy's Plain Jane by Cara Colter, Dark of The Moon by Susan Krinard, The Guilty by Jason Pinter and last but not least The Devil's Foot Prints by Amanda Stevens

For more information visit The Printed Page. Thanks Marcia.

Now, back to Dancing With The Stars. Go Lance.

Happy Reading.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Forbidden Daughter

Welcome to Shobhan Bantwal's Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.

The Forbidden Daughter by Shobhan Bantwal is about how the suggestion of selective abortion sets off a series of events that changes the life of Isha Tilal. It is set in a small town in India.


This is the story of one young mother, Isha Tilak. When a sonogram reveals that their second child is another girl, Isha and her husband Nikhil's lives are forever altered. Their doctor suggests an abortion and her in-laws insist on it. Refusing to comply with their wishes leads to a bizarre chain of events -- Isha's husband becomes the victim of a mysterious murder plot, leaving her alone with one daughter and another on the way. Her only option is to sever her ties to her in-laws and raise her girls as a single mother.

But more danger threatens to rip apart her new life. The stakes become impossibly high -- even for a woman as brave as Isha.

Even though selective abortion is the main theme that runs through out the book. It is more then that. It is about a woman who has to be strong and start over despite the difficulties and
the cultural influences. She does what she has to do to protect her daughters.

Bantwal did a nice a job of writing about an unfamiliar culture. She made it easy to understand what cultural factors influence the thinking of the characters. We may be shocked or not agree with these factors but we understand why.

I found The Forbidden Daughter to be an interesting read. I enjoyed reading it very much. I have added Bantwal's first book The Dowry Bride to my ever growing TBR list. If it is anything like her second book it will be a great read.

About the Author:

I was born and raised in a large, conservative Hindu family in a small town called Belgaum in Southwestern India. I was the black sheep of the family, the only tomboy and hellion in a family of five girls. My four sisters were angels—good little Brahmin girls with the perfect mix of academic achievement, modesty and deportment. Needless to say, I single-handedly gave my parents every gray hair they possessed, but they were wonderful parents and to a large degree I owe everything I am today to them. The most valuable things they gave me were an outstanding education and the love of reading.

An arranged marriage to a man who happened to live in the U.S. brought me to New Jersey several years ago. After giving birth to a daughter and acquiring a second master’s degree in Public Administration from Rider University, I started working for a government agency, where I continue to work.

I’m a late bloomer as far as writing is concerned. Never did I imagine I would even want to be a writer until I turned half a century old. They say a mid-life crisis can go either way—downwards or upwards. Fortunately for me, along with the annoying hot flashes and a few other woes, the creative half of my brain shot into overdrive—definitely an uplifting experience. Overnight I decided I wanted to do two things: be on stage and become a writer.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Left To Die

Welcome to Lisa Jackson's Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.

This is a rescheduled review of Left to Die by Lisa Jackson.

A Serial Killer was loose in Grizzly Falls, Montana. Detectives Selena Alvarez and Regan Pescoli wanted a career making case, but not this case. After four murders, they have nothing to go on; but the killer's mysterious notes. That he leaves with the bodies.

The Serial Killer has a mission. To be successful woman must die. He believes that he is smarter than the police. They can not see his vision, but in time they will.

Jillian Rivers is trapped in her wrecked car. Then a stranger pulls her free. He says his name is Zane MacGregor a trail guide. Is he friend or foe?

There are three story lines in this book. There is the Serial Killer's, the police detective's who are trying to solve this case and their personal lives, and Jullian's story.

Regan Pescoli personal life is very complicated. She has two children and an ex-husband who has remarried. Her daughter thinks that he is the cooler parent and her step mom is great. Her son wanted nothing to do with him, because he is not his father. But when he gets into trouble and his mom gets tough. He runs to his step-dad. She has to deal with all of this and still find out who the serial killer is. I am glad that we get to know more about her in the sequel to Left To Day, Chosen To Die. Chosen To Die will be released in August 2009

I liked that we get to peak into the Serial Killer's mind. It was chilling that we get to hear his thoughts and what he thinks of his destiny.

Jillian's story is interesting as well. She left Seattle to find if her first husband was still alive. As she is driving down a snow covered road. Her tires are shot out and she goes off the road, down a ridge. Has she been saved only to die later?

The ending is unexpected.
It took a while for me to get into the book, but once I did I liked it. I must be weird, but for me the best part was when we were in the Serial Killer's mind.

This book is a suspenseful thriller with some romance thrown in. Give this book a chance. Once you get past the first part of the book, you should become intrigued to see what happens in the end.

Happy Reading

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Sam's Quest for the Crimson Crystal

Welcome to Ben Furman's Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.

Synopsis from the back cover:

Not every hero looks the part....

"Sam" Mae Costas is nobody's idea of a hero. She is constantly teased about her thick glasses, her small size, and her asthma attacks are embarrassing and difficult to control. When Sam is forced to spend the summer on her grandpa's farm she thinks things can't get much worse.

Deep in the caverns below the farm, Prince Buznor is a young Awok on a life-and-death mission to save his world. He has to find Sam and prove to her that only she can find and control the Crimson Crystal.... the one weapon that can defeat the evil threatening his people.

To reach the Crimson Crystal Sam must journey through the hostile Land of Geffen, facing horde of catacomb dwarfs, vicious vampire bats, and deadly monsters. Can Sam overcome her fears, her doubts, and find the Crimson Crystal in time to save the Awokian world?

Sam's Quest for the Crimson Crystal by Ben Furman is a young adult fantasy. It is the first book in the Sam's Quest trilogy.

The book started off slow but once the quest began it moves along very quickly. Along the way Sam encounters many new characters. Some of these characters are friendly, like Kryton the crusty old dragonfly and others are not, like the evil Zogs and their leader Drogon.
I think that this book will appeal to girls, because the main character is a girl. Sam has flaws and insecurities just like every other girl, but she see herself in a different light after her quest.

Sam's Quest is written so that it will encourage the slow reader to keep going and finish the book because they will want to see what happens to Sam and her friends. The child who likes to read will want to read it because of the different challenges that Sam and her friends come across; as well as the different characters and the world that Furman has created.

My daughter has Sam 's Quest for the Crimson Crystal on her TBR list. She thinks it is cool that a girl is the main character. Maybe after she reads it I will put up her review on the blog.

Overall, I did like this book. I am looking forward to reading book two in the trilogy. The title of the book is Sam's Quest The Royal Trident. I will have a review up sometime in October.

About the Author:

During Mr. Furman's FBI career he worked counterterrorism, organized crime, bank robbery, extortion, and kidnapping. His is not a school marm's background that one might associate with writing young adult stories, but than , neither are Sam's fantastic journeys the stuff of coloring books. When Mr. Furman isn't writing, he fills his time painting, woodworking, and managing the Rexus Corporation, his private investigation company.
Happy Reading

Sunday, September 7, 2008

The Strand Prophecy Book 1

Welcome to J.B.B.Winner's Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.

The Strand Prophecy Book 1 by J.B.B. Winner is a young adult science fiction.

It is the story about Steve Cutter, who is a scientist. He makes a startling discover about how evolution is accelerating. He wants to protect the innocents so he uses his alter ego, The Strand, to inform the United States President. When that fails, he uses cell phones and the Internet to inform the world.

I found this book to be very exciting and thrilling. Liked I predicted in The Strand Prophecy/rescheduled review, I was unable to put it down. This was another book that made me stay up to late.

I found that Steve Cutter to be a complex character. Steve has a lot of emotional baggage that he carries with him. Because of these issues, he feels the need to help and protect the innocent especially his niece Anna. Hopefully we will see Steve come to terms with his past and as will with his future in the rest of the books in the series.

The authors created a great alternative universe. Everything they created seems to fit in their world. They have imagined some very terrifying creatures. It seems that every living thing that has evolved into something terrifying with the exception of a couple of living things. Hopefully we will see some more friendly and helpful creatures in future books. Everything can't evolve into something terrifying. Right?

This book has some strong female characters. As a mother of two girls, I like when books have females in a strong role. I enjoyed Anna and the twins Trib and Rose. They are all one tough cookie.

I can't wait for the next book Extinction Embrace Book II of The Strand Prophecy to come out . It is suppose to be release sometime in 2008.

Happy Reading

Thursday, September 4, 2008

The Sitting Swing

Welcome to Irene Watson's Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.

Synopsis of The Sitting Swing by Irene Watson:

Irene Watson's pretentious life could go no further until she faced her past. Her moving and inspiring memoir begins at the end, in a recovery center, where she has gone to understand a childhood fraught with abuse a, guild, and uncertainty.

Two distinct parts of the book look at abusive child rearing and the process of recovery years later. This story shows change, growth, and forgiveness are possible. It gives hope and freedom to those accepting the past and re-writing life scripts that have been passed down for generations. It's never too late to change your life, never too late to heal.

Irene Watson goes into rehab with a chip on her shoulder. She cannot see how this will help her. She states that she went to Avalon, the fictionalized name of the clinic, because all her friends were using terms and ideas that came form Avalon and she wanted to understand what they meant. But as time goes on and the counselors see through her bs and they help her deal with her past and how it influences her present.

Watson writes about how her family raised her especially her mom. Her mom was very overprotected. Irene was never out of her mom's sight and her mom made her feel incompetent when she attempted to do things to please her mom.

This was a story of one woman's journey in understanding who she was and how she got there. As well as the changes that she goes through to accept what happened to her and to find her happiness. As well as finding the strength to listen to herself as to what is important to her and doing it.

This was a thought provoking read. As I was reading about Irene Watson's life; I began to think about my life and the influences good and bad that shaped me into the person I am today.

I enjoyed reading about Watson's story of self-discovery. Parts of this book was sad and parts of it was funny. I feel that any one reading this book will get something out of it. I know I did.

About The Author:

Irene Watson holds a Master Degree in Psychology, with honors, from Regis University in Denver, CO. Her emphasis was spirituality and psychosynthesis. Irene's life has taken her on many paths, with breakthrough results and exemplar growth, to find her authentic and true self. She has designed and facilitated workshops and retreats in the United States and Canada. At present she is the managing Editor of her book review and author publicity company, Reader Views. She lives with her husband on the banks of Barton Creek in Austin, Texas along with their Pomeranian, Tafton, a rescued cat, Patches, and a rescued cockatiel, Clement.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Face of Death

Welcome to Cody McFadyen's Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tour.

The Face of Death by Cody McFadyen is intense psychological thriller with a chilling serial killer.


A sixteen-year-old girl holds a gun to her head at the scene of a grisly triple homicide. She claims "The Stranger" killed her adoptive family, that he's been following her all her life, killing everyone she ever loved, and that no one believes her. But Special Agent Smoky Barret does. Her team has been handpicked from among the nation's elite law enforcement specialists and they are as obsessed and relentless as the psychos they hunt; they'll have to be to deal with this case.

For another vicious double homicide reveals a killer embarked on a dark crusade of trauma and death : an "artist" who's molding Sarah into the perfect victim-and the ultimate weapon. To catch him, Smoky is going to have to put her own fragile, once-shattered life on the line. For The Stranger is all too real, all too close, and all too determined. And when he finally shows his face, Smoky had better be ready to face her worst fear.
from back cover

When I finished reading The Face of Death, I was liked oh my gosh how am I going to review this book. All I can say is that I LOVED IT.

Smoky Barrett is an intense FBI Agent who has both physical and emotional scars that she has acquired from past cases. She heads the Violent Crimes Unit in Los Angeles. She has a decision to make to stay with her team in L.A. or become a teacher of new FBI recruits in Quantico. I love Smoky. She is a tough lady who is able to overcome her past. She cares about her adopted daughter and her friends. They have become her family.

Not that I am an expert in serial killers, but I feel that The Stranger is a little bit different then the typical serial killers that we read about. The Stranger has planned all of this years ago and over time his plans have come to fruition. That is what I find chilling about this book.

For a couple of night after I read the book, I had a hard time sleeping. I was afraid that someone would come into my house. That is how intense this book was. I don't even know when the last time a book made me react that way.

A word of caution there is graphic violence. It was shocking to read what The Stranger did to his victims but I feel that it was necessary to put it into the book so that we and Smoky can see into The Stranger's mind.

This is the second book in the Smoky Barrett series. You do not need to read the first book to understand the second. McFadyen explains the past so you can understand what happened to Smoky. The first book in the series is Shadow Man. The third book The Darker Side will be available in October. I will be looking for these two books so that I can read more about Smoky.

About the Author:

Cody McFadyen was born in Texas in 1968. He now resides in California. He designed websites before selling his first novel. He lives with his two black labs, often referred to as ‘The Black Forces of Destruction.’ His first novel Shadow Man and his second book were both international best sellers.