Tuesday, June 28, 2011

When You Dare by Lori Foster (thoughts)

From Goodreads:

"Professional mercenary Dare Macintosh lives by one hard and fast rule: business should never be personal. If a cause appeals to him and the price is right, he'll take the mission he's offered. But then the lovely Molly Alexander asks him to help her track down the men who'd had her kidnapped—and for the first time, Dare's tempted to combine work with pleasure.

Fiercely independent, Molly vows to trust no one until she's uncovered the truth. Could the enemy be her powerful, estranged father? The ex-fiancé who still holds a grudge? Or the not-so-shy fan of her bestselling novels? As the danger heats up around them, the only anchor Molly has is Dare himself. But what she feels for him just might be the most frightening thing of all…"

My Thoughts:

What a fun read this was! A mystery and suspense mixed in with a hot romance was the perfect combination for me and I couldn't get enough of this book. The book starts off with a bang as Dare rescues Molly and gets caught up in all of her troubles. The beginning of the book was action packed and kept me on my toes while I was reading it. I just didn't want to put it down. I loved the chemistry that was building between Dare and Molly from the very beginning. I liked that they each tried to resist the feelings they had for one another but with little success. The romance that grew between them was HOT and I was constantly rooting for them. The mystery portion of the book was interesting and kept me constantly guessing while I tried to figure out who might have had Molly kidnapped. While I really enjoyed the book, I did find it a bit slow at times in the middle of the book. I'm not sure if I was expecting more action or what but that would be my only complaint with this novel. Although the end sure made up for it and once again had me turning pages as fast as I could. All in all, I found it to be a fun, fast-paced read that left me wanting more. I can't to read more by Lori Foster and I've heard that the 2nd book in this series is Trace's story. Recommended to fans of romance and romantic suspense!

Disclosure: This book was sent to me for review the publisher for review. And of course this is my honest opinion. Thanks!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Graveminder by Melissa Marr (thoughts)

Graveminder is a dark, deliciously creepy tale that begins with a death in the small town of Claysville. As soon as Rebekkah hears of her grandmother Maylene's death, she realizes that she will need to return to the town where Maylene lived and died. But Claysville isn't your typical town and has many of its' own secrets; just like Maylene wasn't your typical grandmother and had secrets of her own. Before Rebekkah knows it she is caught up within the secrets of both the town and her grandmother and what results is something that she never could have imagined.

So let's just start off with saying that I loved this book! Seriously, I couldn't put this book down and stayed up way too late reading it. In fact, there was a huge storm going on one night while I was reading it (with possible tornado activity) and what do you think I was doing?? Reading...I could have cared less about the weather except it fit in with the atmosphere of the book so perfectly! With Graveminder, Marr has created a world where the dead walk and nothing is as it seems. I loved the creepy atmosphere that was present throughout this book. In the book, Rebekkah has to learn to tend the dead as she begins to fill in for her late grandmother. The world that Rebekkah begins to learn about and explore is more eerie than she can imagine and fits in perfectly with the atmosphere. This was just one of those books that I couldn't get enough of. Rebekkah was an interesting main character with lots of family and relationship issues that come into play throughout the story. One of those main relationship issues is with her ex-love interest Byron. Byron and Rebekkah find themselves intertwined with the secrets of the town and each other. And there lies my only complaint with this book...Byron and Rebekkah's relationship could be a bit much at times. But it honestly didn't affect my enjoyment of this book and this was a book that I couldn't get enough of!

All in all, I absolutely adored this book and can't recommend it enough! The author did an amazing job of creating a world where the dead live and secrets abound. The book was dark, creepy, intense, and suspenseful....a perfect mix that made this novel really stand out for me. Highly recommended!

Disclosure: I checked this one out from my local library....I'm going to need my own copy at some point though :)

Monday, June 20, 2011

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (June 20, 2011)

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey where we share what we read this past week, what we hope to read this week…. and anything in between! This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from!

Whew! This month is just flying by and I'm struggling to keep up with everything around the house and with life in general. Summer is here though and I'm loving this beautiful weather! Anyways, on to the bookishness :)

I'm currently reading Chime by Franny Billingsley which I just began reading. I've been looking forward to reading this one for awhile now after seeing some good reviews for it. I have high hopes and can't wait to find some quality reading time for it today. Last week I was only able to finish When You Dare by Lori Foster. This was my first book by Foster but it will definitely not be my last. It had a few slow points but for the most part was a really good read.

I'm not sure what is up next but I have a bunch of good choices waiting for me! I have a ton of reviews that I need to write (how did I get behind by 5 reviews??) and tons of books to read. I'm thinking about taking a week and just focusing on relaxing and reading. No worrying if I don't get the chance to comment like I like to, no Twitter which is a black hole for me, no Goodreads....just reading. I think that I'm going to enjoy it! Hope all of you have a wonderful Monday and rest of the week! And of course happy reading!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Heart of the Highland Wolf by Terry Spear (thoughts)

From back of the book:

"It's a matter of pride....Modern day werewolf laird Ian MacNeill reluctantly allows a film production company to use his castle, but he knows his secretive clan has a big problem when a beautiful red werewolf female who insists she's working on the film keeps showing up in the wrong places...

And a matter of pleasure...Julia Wildthorn is not who she says she is-she's sneaking into Argent Castle to steal an ancient relic for her grandfather and to do research for her next werewolf romance novel. When she catches a glimpse of Ian, she realizes he's the perfect hero..."

My Thoughts:

A hunky highland werewolf, an old haunted castle filled with secret tunnels, and a romance writer with secrets of her own....this story had a great setup to it. Ian is the oldest of quadruplets and the leader of his werewolf pack. He has reluctantly allowed a movie production company to film at his castle in hopes to alleviate some of his money troubles. Enter Julia, a romance writer who writes about werewolves, and is a wolf herself. Julia has come to the castle pretending to part of the film crew but trouble follows her wherever she goes. She instantly catches the attention of Ian and the attraction between them instantly ignites. One of my favorite things about this book was the descriptions of Argent Castle. It had everything you would expect an old castle to have including trapdoors, hidden tunnels and passageways, and a ghost. It helped to create the perfect setting for this paranormal romance. I also liked the mystery aspect of the story as Julia is getting mysterious phone calls from someone that seems to know all of about her secret reasons for wanting to get in the castle. There were times that I couldn't put the book down as the author was great at creating a tense, suspenseful environment.

That being said though, I really struggled with the romance between the two characters. Or more accurately, I needed Julia to have more of a backbone to her. There were times when her strength of character showed through but unfortunately it was far and few between. I also struggled a bit with the switching of viewpoints between characters at times. There were a couple of times where I was thrown off balance and had to go back and reread a bit. Overall though while I didn't love this book, I did like it and I plan on reading more by this author. I'm sure that there will be romance lovers who can't get enough of this one so I would recommend it but with a few hesitations.

Disclosure: I was lucky enough to be sent a copy of this book for review from the lovely Danielle at Sourcebooks. My thanks!

And here is a link to my thoughts on Destiny of the Wolf by this author which I really enjoyed.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

What I Spent My Weekend Doing...

I spent my weekend playing on the beach...

Watching the kiddos swim....they are nuts as it was ice cold water :)

And spent quality time with the family. Couldn't ask for a better weekend and I'll be back with a review or two on Thursday.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Library Loot- Latest Craziness

Library Loot is a great way to share all of the new books that you picked up at the library and is hosted by Marg and Clare.

"Latest Craziness" is right as I've been requesting books left and right lately. There are just SO many good books out there that I want to read. And with summertime upon us, I'm hoping to get the chance to sit outside and read once in awhile while the kiddos play. So I've been stocking up on books (that's my excuse anyways). Here is what I've recently picked up:

1. Rogue by Rachel Vincent
2. Aftertime by Sophie Littlefield
3. Hounded by Kevin Hearne
4. Dragon Bound by Thea Harrison
5. Ruined: A Novel by Paula Morris
6. Blood Magic by Tessa Gratton

Look at all of those pretty covers! I just want to eat them all up...LOL! Seriously though, I keep staring at them trying to figure out which book that I should read first. It's quite the struggle as I would hate to see any of these go unread back to the library. But then I look at this book and I can't help but grin:

Deadline by Mira Grant came in for me at the library this week and I seriously almost screamed I was so excited. I loved, loved, loved Feed and cannot wait to see what happens next with this trilogy. Happy days for me :)

Monday, June 6, 2011

The Making of a Duchess by Shana Galen (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"Twelve years after fleeing their burning chateau, Julien Harcourt, Duc de Valère, searches for his lost twin brothers. His frequent travels between England and France at a time when the exiled Napoleon is reported to be marshalling his troops raises the suspicions of English authorities who set secret operative Sarah Smith on his trail. A risky game of cat and mouse leads the two from the ballrooms of London to the prisons of Paris and into a fragile love that neither dares to hope for."

My Thoughts:

The Making of a Duchess was a great way to spend a few days as it was filled with romance, intrigue, and passion. The story begins with the main character Sarah, a governess, being coerced into becoming a spy and pretending to be a long lost duchess from France. As Sarah meets Julien, her "future husband to be", passion instantly begins to ignite between the two of them. What I liked about this book is the hidden secrets between the two main characters. Neither of them are being honest with each other at the beginning of the book which is a recipe for disaster. Especially as they are almost instantly attracted to one another....the passion in this book was HOT! The romance between these two built slowly and came across realistically. I really enjoyed it and wanted to see them get their happy ever after. I liked the way that the author shared Julien's past from when he was a child and how it tied into the rest of the book. It was the set-up for a really great storyline in my opinion and I can't wait to read more. The book was a really fast read and I couldn't set it down.

All in all, I found this book to be an enjoyable read and a solid romance. I'm looking forward to reading more with these characters as this is the beginning of a trilogy. And I've found myself a new romance author to watch. Recommended to romance lovers!

Disclosure: Checked out from my local library :)

Friday, June 3, 2011

Random Friday - May in Review

I'm off for a mini-vacation with the familia this weekend. Waterpark, games, hotel rooms, craziness, I have it all coming and then some :) I'm looking forward to the getaway although I always seem to need a vacation from my vacation. LOL! And the kids are so excited that they are about to burst. May was a great reading month for me as I was able to finish seven books. Last month I finished:
  1. Green-Eyed Demon by Jaye Wells: A great addition to this series as Sabina battles her Grandmother and searches for her sister.
  2. The White Devil by Justin Evans: Quite a creepy ghost story set in a boarding school. How can you ask for more?
  3. Dark Descendant by Jenna Black: Fast-paced urban fantasy and great beginning to a new series!
  4. The Making of a Duchess by Shana Galen: A romance filled with intrigue...a fun read.
  5. The Tender Mercy of Roses by Anna Michaels: A quiet mystery that focuses on hidden secrets.
  6. Graveminder by Melissa Marr: Creepy novel that kept me turning the pages late into the night.
  7. Tracking the Tempest by Nicole Peeler: A fun visit back into Jane's world as she is sucked into a new mystery.
Wow! May was quite the reading month for me as I ended up enjoying all of the books that I read. Let's hope I can keep this kind of reading mojo up for June :) Favorite book of the month is a tie between Graveminder and Green-Eyed Demon but The White Devil sure came close. Links to the reviews for some of these books can be found under my 2011 reads list. I've fallen a bit behind in reviews. I still need to review the following books:

But that is all for a later date....I'll see you guys next week!

P.S.- The top picture is of my youngest...I love his hair in this one. It never stays down for me :)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Spotlight Review: Tempest Rising by Nicole Peeler (thoughts)

Spotlight Reviews are my way of playing catch up. I read and didn't review a ton of of books from last year that I always wanted to share my thoughts on. These reviews will be short and sweet with just my basic thoughts and are my way of "catching up".

From Goodreads:

"Living in small town Rockabill, Maine, Jane True always knew she didn't quite fit in with so-called normal society. During her nightly, clandestine swim in the freezing winter ocean, a grisly find leads Jane to startling revelations about her heritage: she is only half-human.

Now, Jane must enter a world filled with supernatural creatures alternatively terrifying, beautiful, and deadly- all of which perfectly describe her new "friend," Ryu, a gorgeous and powerful vampire.

It is a world where nothing can be taken for granted: a dog can heal with a lick; spirits bag your groceries; and whatever you do, never-ever rub the genie's lamp."

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed this beginning to a new urban fantasy series. Jane is such a great main character and she really made this book that much better in my opinion. She is a little unsure of herself and inexperienced but always up for a challenge. And what a challenge it is as she is drawn into the middle of a deadly mystery where her heritage (she is considered to be a halfing meaning half human and half supernatural) plays a huge role in those that are dying. This book was a fun read filled with humerous moments. My only problem with the book was the instant dislike to Jane's new boyfriend Ryu that I developed. I just don't care for him and had problems figuring out why Jane is so enamored with him. The mystery aspect of the story was really good and I was constantly turning the pages to see what would happen next. Overall, I thought that this book was a wonderful beginning to a new series and I was instantly ready to rejoin Jane's world in the next book. Recommended!

Disclosure: I read this book last year but I'm 98% positive that I checked that out from the library. It was a good choice!