Thursday, November 29, 2012

Blue Dahlia by Nora Roberts (thoughts)

Blue Dahlia is the story of Stella Rothchild, a recently widowed mother of two, as she begins her new life at Harper House.  The newly hired manager at In the Garden Nursery, Stella is ready to start over and begin anew.  Roz, her new boss, asks Stella and her boys to move into Harper house with her as she adjust to her new job and new life. But rumor has it that Harper house is haunted and Stella is about to find out how true that rumor may be. 

I should start off by saying that I went into reading this book with moderately high expectations.  I've read plenty of books by Nora Roberts and never have been disappointed.  I especially enjoy her trilogies which is why I decided to give this one a shot.  Whatever my expectations on this book, I just never connected with the characters in this story which led to a mediocre reading experience for me.  I went into this book thinking that I was going to love it but instead found myself detached from it.  Everything about the storyline kept my interest but only to a certain extent.  I don't know how to explain it any other way other than to say I found myself disinterested at times.  I found the history and mystery of Harper house interesting but I wanted more.  I'm hoping that the next two books have more details in regards to this but I'm not sure if I'll end up taking the time to read them or not.  I did also enjoy the romance that developed between Logan and Stella.  It came across in a way that was not only realistic but hopeful.  I really liked that aspect of the book especially as there was an instant attraction between the two of them.  While I didn't love everything about the book, I ended up finding it to be an overall okay read.  Everything except the ending which felt too rushed for me.  I'm guessing that this is because it is a trilogy and the beginning of one at that.

Overall, an okay read but one that didn't live up to my expectations at all.  Does that even make sense?  I didn't hate it and felt mainly "meh" about it although it had some good parts.  Not really sure if I'll pick up the second book or not.  Part of me wants to just to see what happens next and because I want more history in regards to Harper house.  And part of me thinks that there are just too many other books out there that I really want to read.  So I'm undecided.  I'm only going to recommend this book if you are a HUGE Nora Roberts fan or fan of contemporary romance with slight paranormal aspects.  I'm sure that there are a lot of other readers that will enjoy this book way more than I did.  But there you have each their own :)

Bottom Line:  An okay read that left me with mixed feelings.

Disclosure:  Checked out from my local library!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Filling My Kindle

Seeing as I will be posting this on Black Friday, I thought it would be fun to share some of the books that I have bought recently for my kindle.  I will not be shopping like some of you crazy folks out there...instead I will be at work enjoying the double time.  Yep, it may be no fun to work the day after the holiday but my paycheck will sure be liking it.  Especially since I can't seem to stop buying books for my kindle.  It is an addiction and entirely JUST TOO easy to buy books for it.  Because who can say no to books for $.99 or $1.99???  I sure can't!  Here are just a few of the books that I have purchased for my kindle:

I can't wait to read each and every one of these books!  Never mind that No Mark Upon Her by Crombie is the 14th book in a series that I haven't even started yet.  When I saw that it was on sale I snatched it up anyway.  Let's face it....I just have no self control when it comes to books.  Now I just need to find the time to read all of these.  What books have you purchased lately??? 

And to all of those folks brave enough to go shopping today, I hope you have lots of fun and find a few books to purchase as well :)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Untraceable by Laura Griffin (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"Private investigator Alexandra Lovell uses computer skills and cunning to help clients drop off the radar and begin new lives in safety. Melanie Bess, desperate to escape her abusive cop husband, was one of those clients. But when Melanie vanishes for real, Alex fears the worst, and sets out to discover what happened. Using every resource she can get her hands on -- including an elite team of forensic scientists known as the Tracers, and a jaded, sexy Austin PD detective -- Alex embarks on a mission to uncover the truth."

My Thoughts:

I love a good romantic suspense and this book was exactly what I was looking for at the time.  It was a fast paced, easy read that kept me caught up in the mystery the entire time.  There were twists and turns that kept me guessing and a nice chemistry between the two main characters. As soon as I began this book I found myself intrigued.  Alex is one those main characters with a hint of mystery surrounding her.  She helps these women find new lives which is a constant source of danger for her and the reader can't help but wonder why and how she has gotten in to a profession like this.  Plus, there is a history between her and Nathan Deveraux that gives hints as to why there is such an intense chemistry between them but never is fully explained.  These kinds of things added together created an underlying layer of suspense that really added to the book for me.  I NEED to read the next book in the series just to see if more is explained.  Or to see what happens next with this series.  I'm not even sure which of those things I want.  I just know that this book was good enough that I will be reading more.  

All in all, this was a solid read for me.  It had me on the edge of my seat quite a few times and I was definitely reading as fast as I could.  I liked the chemistry that developed between Alex and Nathan and am hoping to see more of them in future books.  I think that I'm just eager to read more by this author in general.  Recommended especially to fans of romantic suspense or if you are looking for a fast-paced read!

Bottom Line:  A suspenseful read that left me needing more!

Disclosure:  Checked out from my lovely local library!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Weekend Randomness

Happy Friday everyone!  What a long week!  I have been ready for the weekend since Monday even though I have to work on Saturday which stinks royally.  Yuck :/  But looking at these three smiling faces always makes it worth it.  This picture was taken a couple of Sundays ago before the Bears game.  I wish you guys knew how hard it is to get them all three sitting still long enough for a good picture.  It's ones like these that make me laugh though :)  Priceless!  So I just keep snapping these shots because you never know what you are going to get.  (And I have no clue what my youngest was looking at if you are wondering).

I'm thinking about unplugging at some point in the next few days.  Ideally it would be starting today, but as the idea has just come to me it isn't going to happen that way.  I'm thinking that I could find the time to write up a few reviews and schedule them for next week, and then just back away from the computer and internet for a bit.  I find myself browsing the internet and talking on Twitter for WAY too many hours in the day.  I have guests coming for Thanksgiving (including my sister...yay!) and I really, really need my house to at least be presentable.  Maybe even clean.  I have high hopes...but I also have three children who don't seem to know what the word clean means.  And maybe this will allow for some extra reading time which I can always use :)  Less computer time and more books sounds like a good plan of action to me!  So there is my goal for the next two days:  write up a few reviews, maybe an e-book post, and then step away from the computer for awhile which will allow for me to come back feeling refreshed.

In other reading news, I'm also planning on participating in Thankfully Reading Weekend next week which will be my only exception to the computer ban.  Obviously I'm going to want to jump on Twitter a few times during the weekend and share what I'm reading.  I think that is the whole point, isn't it??  It should be lots of fun.  I'm not planning out what I want to read or how much...instead I'll be playing it by ear and just reading as much as I can.  Besides I'm going to want to spend lots of time with my family because I don't get to see them enough as it is.  It is going to be so nice to have everyone together!  That's enough out of me for today.  I think I'll go work on those reviews I want to write.  May I wish you all a very early Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Dead Scared by S.J. Bolton (thoughts)

Wow!  Just wow.  Even now I find myself struggling to put into words just how much I enjoyed this book.  From the very first page and until the end I found myself utterly captivated by this book.  Dead Scared brings back DC Lacey Flint as she goes undercover at the notorious Cambridge college to investigate a recent string of suicides on campus.  Lacey is posing as a student in hopes of learning more about why these young students are choosing to end their lives in such unconventional and violent ways.  But Lacey soon realizes that she is in way over her head as her investigation spirals out of control.

I found this book to be so intense and creepy that I just couldn't put it down!  As soon as Lacey goes undercover the tone and atmosphere of the book goes dark and ominous which led to a deliciously good amount of tension.  I was turning the pages on my reader as fast as I could!  The author chose to switch viewpoints from character to character which worked well for me.  It kept me on my toes and definitely kept me reading for longer periods of time than I normally would.  I just can't emphasize how strong of a hold this book had on me.  This book was dark, it was thrilling, it was fast was everything that a good thriller should be.  It would have been perfect and an easy 5 star read for me if not for the ending.  The ending was a bit of a let down as it left too many things open.  When I finished I went back and reread and still felt the same way which was a bit disappointing.  I checked and there will be a 3rd book though which gives me some hope that we will get a bit more closure in the next book.  Overall although I found the ending mildly disappointing, the book itself was sooo good that it overrode any qualms that I had for it.  I need more Lacey Flint in my life!

Reading this book (and loving it so much) has catapulted this author and all of her books on to my must read list!  Seriously, I have plans to read anything and everything that she has written including all future books!  If thrillers with dark and creepy atmospheres are your thing, then you must give this author a try.  I strongly recommend that you begin with Now You See Me which is just as amazing of a book!  I honestly wouldn't be surprised if both of these books make it on my top ten reads of 2012 list.  And I'm gushing at this point so I'll end it with a very, very highly recommended!  Read it!

Bottom Line:  An AMAZING thriller!  That's all you need to know :)

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley.  My many thanks because this book was such a good read!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Wordless Wednesday (Halloween Fun)

Halloween.  Lots of sugar.  Enough said.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

On My Nightstand: November Edition

(Sorry for the poor quality picture but I was being a bit lazy today)

Whew!  October has come and gone and now I find myself 4 days into November already.  I just can't keep up with this time of year.  Happily enough for me though, my reading has been coming along quite nicely.  Which is a major change since I feel like I went through a year long reading slump at times in 2012.  Now it just comes down to what books that I feel like I MUST read before the end of the year.  I can't even really make a list because there are just TOO many.  So instead of putting a bunch of pressure on myself to boost up my reading numbers (I'm at 47 if you are curious) and get some of those many books that I had planned on reading read, I'm just going to once again list a few books that I would like to read in November.  Here is what's on my nightstand for November:
  • Bitter Night by Diana Pharaoh Francis-  I'm currently reading this and it is OH SO GOOD!  I'm seriously wishing I had started this series sooner but at least I have the next two books to read as well for it!
  • House of Many Shadows by Barbara Michaels-  Because I can't finish out the year without reading at least one more book by Michaels and Jenny warned me off of one of the other ones sitting on my shelves.
  • Naked In Death by J.D. Robb-  Reread and my 1st audiobook.  Haven't quite figured out how to get it on my MP3 player but when I do I'll be starting it.  LOL!
  • On my Kindle I'm currently reading the same two books that I mentioned in the previous Monday reading post (Tarnished by Karina Cooper and When Blood Calls by J.K. Beck).  Because I totally bypassed my Kindle this week and read Too Wicked to Wed by Cara Elliott (which I adored).  
  • Into The Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes-  I've heard really good things about this thriller so I'm hoping to finally take the time to read it in November.
  • The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton-  I just loved The House at Riverton by this author so it is beyond time that I read more by her.  Plus, the colder days just beg for a big chunky read like this so I'm looking forward to it.
Other than that I would really, really like to get back to IT this month which I had to send unfinished back to the library.  I hate when that happens :/   And I would love to knock out a few more books on my Kindle since I can't seem to stop buying them.  I already need to do another e-book post.  You know that saying of too many books and just not enough time, right?  Yikes!  What are your reading plans for November???