Friday, December 28, 2007

Romance Challenge

Okay, just one more challenge but luckily this one will incorporate books from some of my other challenges. With no further ado, here is my list:

  • Blood Brothers by Nora Roberts

  • Vengeance in Death by J.D. Robb

  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

  • Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
  • 204 Rosewood Lane by Debbie Macomber


  • Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell
  • Breakfast At Stephanie's by Sue Margolis
  • Dark Lover by J.R. Ward

Forever Odd by Dean Koontz

This is the second book that I have read by Dean Koontz and the second in the Odd Thomas series. I enjoyed reading this book just as much as I enjoyed reading the first novel. Odd Thomas has the ability to see the dead plus he has a strong conscience that causes him to try and right wrongs. In this story, he comes across a purely evil woman who he knows will try and kill him. The ending of this book caught me by surprise and left me contemplating...but you're going to have to read the book and let me know what you think. I am most definitely going to read the next book that follows this one. I've also decided to give some of Dean Koontz's other books a try. I really did like this book and would recommend this series!
Challenge: Casual Reading Challenge
My Rating: 4 out of 5

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Christmas Loot and Reviews

To begin with, I hope everyone had a good holiday. I got a few books for Christmas including Blood Brothers(Nora Roberts), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows(Rowling), and another book but the title isn't coming to me right now. (I'm rocking the baby so getting up and looking isn't an option :P) I've gotta say that I'm glad the holidays are finishing up because of all of the food that I have been consuming! Aack! I recently finished a couple of books so here are two short reviews.
First I read A Christmas Thief by Mary and Carol Higgins Clark. This was a cute little suspense story that kept me interested and involved. I like the character of Regan Reilly and am thinking of trying out reading some of Carol Higgins Clark's books. A good Christmas read!
I also read Last Look by Mariah Stewart. This was a good and suspenseful mystery but I found it a bit lacking. I personally feel like it could have used a few more thrills...or something. Anyways, it's about a case that is being re-investigated after a girl that was previously thought murdered years ago is found dead..for real this time. The catch is that a young man has already been executed for her "murder" years ago. I liked this book but it wasn't my favorite of hers. It did have a good storyline though! Two nice and easy reads before the end of the year!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Salem Falls by Jodi Picoult

I could not put this book down. Literally!! I was drawn into this book from the beginning and then just sucked down into the story. As always, Picoult tackles a difficult subject in her novels and this time it was rape and the difficulty of proving the innocence or guilt involved. Picoult just has the ability to pull the reader into the story and make you relate to the characters and feel for them.

I love her books and plan on reading all of her books. In my opinion, My Sister's Keeper is the best book that I've read by her so far. But to finish this off, this was another great read and I most definitely recommend giving it a try.

Challenge: Whitcoulls Challenge
My Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay

Wow! This was an interesting book for me. The main character is a blood splatter analyst who is also a serial killer. This book was different from any other "mystery/suspense" book that I have ever read. It took me a little bit to get into the book but I'm glad that I gave it a chance. It turned out to be a good read! I think that for me it took awhile to warm up to the main character...but he's a serial killer so I'm not sure what I expected. LOL! I'm going to continue on with this series because I'm curious as to what is going to happen to Dexter! Good story overall.

Challenge: Casual Reading Challenge

My Rating: 4 out of 5

Monday, December 17, 2007

Deck The Halls by Mary and Carol Higgins Clark

I'm daughter got her two month old shots today. I've gotta say that I dread this more than she ever could. I've resorted to babying her as much as possible every since we got home from the doctor's fact, I don't think I've put her down yet. She's been a trooper and seems to be sleeping it off. They have some new thing that is a vaccine that she swallows (they didn't have that when my son was little) but she refused to swallow. It was quite amusing to watch her spit it out...I felt for the nurse. She just kept refusing to swallow ...apparently swallowable vaccines are NOT all that great of an idea. She maybe swallowed half of it and the other half went down her chin and neck...anyways I thought I would share my morning.

I liked Deck The Halls. I'm not sure why I've never read the books that these two women have written together. I've read all of Mary Higgins Clark's other books but not these. This was a good holiday thriller(I guess that would be the word for it) that kept me entertained. Likable characters with a nice ending...I'm going to have to read the other books that this mother-daughter team have written.

My rating: 4 outof 5

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Postmortem by Patricia Cornwell

Postmortem is the first book in the Kay Scarpetta series. I've gotta say that it rocked. This book had a good storyline, likable characters, and kept me guessing...which is very important in my opinion. There was a lot of description so I read this slower than I usually do with mystery novels. I liked the way that this story ended and now I'm anxious to continue on with this series.
I can see why it is so popular with so many people! Since it just keeps on snowing where I live I've decided to forgo challenge books and start reading another Christmas-themed mystery. After baking all day yesterday..and the snow...the only thing I need to complete the mood is to watch A Christmas Story nonstop. :) I love that movie!!! Now if I could only finish my shopping....

Nineteenth Century Women Writers Challenge

Well, I just can't seem to stop signing up for's official..I've become a challenge addict. This latest challenge will help me to read books that are out of my comfort zone as well as knocking off some TBR books that have been on my list for years. Nevermind the fact that I'm already involved in too many challenges...I just couldn't resist this one! Plus, I love making lists for these challenges. So here it goes..for this challenge I'm going to read:

  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (this overlaps with the Whitcoulls challenge)
  • Wuthering Heights (an alternate for TBR challenge)
  • Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
  • Middlemarch by George Elliot


  • The Awakening by Kate Chopin

Friday, December 14, 2007

TBR Challenge 2008

This is the last challenge that I'm going to sign up for...I promise :) maybe not but who cares. It's fun! And I really do want to read all of these books so what can it hurt. Here's my fun:

  • Prozac Nation: Young and Depressed in America by Elizabeth Wurtzel
  • Set This House In Order by Matt Ruff
  • Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See
  • I Know This Much Is True by Wally Lamb
  • Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond
  • Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathon Safron Foer
  • The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
  • Wild Swans by Jung Chang
  • Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen
  • Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
  • The Girls by Lori Lansens
  • Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis


  • The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
  • Lucky by Alice Sebold
  • Season of the Witch by Natasha Mosert
  • True Believer by Nicholas Sparks
  • The Killing Floor by Lee Child
  • The Fuck-up by Arthur Nersesian
  • Midnight In Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt
  • Dating Big Bird by Laura Zigman
  • Case Histories by Kate Atkinson
  • Brick Lane by Monica Ali
  • Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
  • The Rock Orchard by Paula Wall

Visions of Sugar Plums by Janet Evanovich

Okay, I love the Stephanie Plum number series..they crack me up! I decided to read this in-between-the-numbers novel purely because it's Christmas time. This was just okay for me. It was cute without having alot of depth to it...and not overly funny. Personally, I like seeing more of Lula and Stephanie's grandma. It was a cute and easy read meant for the holidays.

My rating: 3 out of 5

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

I've been wanting to read this book for a long was definitely worth the wait!!! I love books that have bits of history tied into them and this fit the bill. I liked how the wedding traditions were included in the story, and I found that I learned a little bit about Afghanistan's culture. This book had characters that drew you down into the story and their lives. It had all of the workings of a great book....which it was. This is a book that I would recommend to everyone to give it a try and is definitely worth it!!!

My Rating: 5 out of 5
Challenge: Whitcoulls challenge

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Notable Books 2008

I'm keeping my list for this challenge short and sweet. That way I'll be able to complete ALL of my challenges for 2008. Plus I'll be able to add a few more as the year goes on :) This is my list:
  • Let The Northern Lights Erase Your Name by Vendela Veda
  • Then We Came To The End by Joshua Ferris
  • Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah
  • The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court by Jeffrey Toobin


  • Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

See No Evil by Allison Brennan

This was the first book that I have read by this author. It was a thriller with some romance intertwined. This book drew me in right away and kept its hold on me. I liked this book but it wasn't great. I think I will try another book by this author before deciding if I really like her or not. It was a fast read even though it was a little over 400 pages long. It helped that I'm cooped up in the house because of the huge icestorm that has hit the makes for good reading. Here's to keeping my fingers crossed that the power stays on!

Challenge: Casual Reading Challenge
Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Monday, December 10, 2007

Bridget Jone's Diary by Helen Fielding

Aha! I think I've figured out how to put images into my posts...I'm crossing my fingers that it shows up. ;) I just finished my first book for the Whitcoulls challenge. I really enjoyed reading Bridget Jone's Diary. I kept picturing Renee Zellwegger while I was reading this. Every woman can relate to this book in some way in my opinion. It was a fun read for me. My only complaint was that she was continually trying to lose weight when she was only around 128 lbs (although I laughed at her different theories as to why her weight kept fluctuating). Good read and now I'll put her other book on my TBR list.

My rating: 4 out of 5

Sunday, December 9, 2007

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie

I just finished my second book for the Casual Reading challenge. I've been wanting to start reading Agatha Christie mysteries and this gave me the chance. What a great 1st book to choose! I loved this book. I was kept guessing until the very end and there were so many twists and turns that by the end of the book I was shocked and very surprised.
Now I'm anxious to read another of her books! All in all, I give this book a 4.5 out of 5 and definitely recommend it!!!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Library Visit

So I should say up front that I am a library addict. Going to the library does for me what buying new books does for others. My philosophy on buying books is I will only buy the ones that I HAVE to all-time favorites...books that I will read again and again. This means that I get very excited when I get to go to the library (I'm pathetic :)) I could spend hours browsing the shelves and finding new authors to try. Anyways, I thought I would share the books that I got from my latest trip:
And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie (Casual Reading challenge)
Riptide by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
The Rainmaker by John Grisham (Casual Reading challenge)
The Kite Runner by Khaled Housseini (Whitcoulls challenge)
The Rock Orchard by Paula Wall (been on my TBR list for forever)
Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay (Casual Reading challenge)
The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Neiffenegger (Whitcoulls challenge)
Visions of Sugar Plums by Janet Evanovich
Postmortem by Patricia Cornwell (Casual Reading challenge)
Bridget Jone's Diary by Helen Fielding (Whitcoulls challenge)
The Hours by Michael Cunningham (TBR list)

I'm so excited to get started but my only prolem lies with the fact that there were a ton of other books that I wanted to pick up...but they are for challenges that don't start till January. I can't wait! What I picked out should keep me busy for the rest of this month...and then the real fun starts!!!!!!!

Friday, December 7, 2007

What's In A Name Reading Challenge

I couldn't resist picking out books for this challenge. Aack! Now I'm joining another challenge...I can't seem to help myself. Oh could be worse, right? Plus a couple of the books I chose go along with other challenges as well. Here is my list.

1. Book with a color in the title: The Color Purple by Alice Walker (also for the themed reading challenge)
2. Book with an animal in the title: Crocodile On The Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters
3. Book with a name in the title: Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt (also for Whitcoulls challenge)
4. Book with a place in the title: Gods In Alabama by Joshilyn Jackson
5. Book with a weather event in the title: Be Buried In The Rain by Barbara Michaels
6. Book with a plant in the title: I Never Promised You A Rose Garden by Joanne Greenberg

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

The Laughing Corpse by Laurell K. Hamilton

Well folks, I did it...I finished my first book for my first challenge ever! Woohoo!! I read this book for the casual reading challenge. This is the second book in the Anita Blake vampire series. I have to admit that I liked the first one much better. This one was just okay for me and makes me a little hesitant on continuing with the series. I didn't care for the ending of this story...but of course that is just my opinion. I did like the first one enough that I will end up trying at least one more from this series. I really like that the author has such a strong female for the main character. It's fun to see how she will get herself out of dangerous situations. I'm off to read a book for a different challenge.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

In Their Shoes Challenge

I finally decided on a list for this challenge. It took me forever because I have so many of these types of books on my TBR list. I just couldn't decide. :) I picked out eight books so I wouldn't overwhelm myself...with a couple of extras of course. Here is what I decided on:
  • Fat Girl: A True Story by Judith Moore
  • Expecting Adam: A True Story of... by Martha Beck
  • I Have Lived A Thousand Years by Livia Bitton-Jackson (crossover with numbers challenge)
  • Dreams From My Father: A Story by Barack Obama
  • Don't Let's Go To The Dogs Tonight by Alexandra Fuller
  • Mukiwa: A White Boy in Africa by Peter Godwin
  • Devil In The White City by Erik Larson
  • Wild Swans by Jung Chang


  • Brainiac by Ken Jennings
  • The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Man Booker Challenge

This is going to be a good challenge for me to join. It'll help me knock off some of those books on my TBR list that I have been putting off. Fun stuff :) Here's my list with a couple of extras (if I get ambitious) or alternates (if I don't like what I picked out)...I'm hoping for ambitious myself.
  • Hotel du Lac by Anita Brookner
  • The Life of Pi by Yann Martel
  • The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood (I've been wanting to read another of her books since reading The Handmaid's Tale)
  • The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
  • Atonement by Ian McEwan
  • Jonathon Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke


  • True History of Kelly Gang by Peter Carey
  • Brick Lane by Monica Ali

Friday, November 30, 2007

Casual Reading Challenge

This is a casual challenge (ha ha). Anyways, basically you make a list of books and read from it. The list can change and you don't have to finish all of the books on the list. Easy, right? I thought so. The books that I chose go along with the casual reading theme. Nothing too heavy. I chose twenty books so we will see how much I accomplish with the goal being the entire list. Let's get started!

My list includes:
  • Last Known Victim by Erica Spindler
  • See No Evil by Allison Brennan
  • Creation In Death by J.D. Robb
  • Fool Moon by Jim Butcher
  • The Laughing Corpse by Laurell K. Hamilton
  • Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison
  • Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
  • Postmortem by Patricia Cornwell
  • And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
  • Montmorency: Thief, Liar, Gentleman? by Eleanor Updale
  • Something Wicked Comes This Way by Ray Bradbury
  • Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay
  • Lullaby by Chuck Palahniuk
  • Rebecca by Daphne duMaurier
  • Forever Odd by Dean Koontz
  • Two For The Dough by Janet Evanovich
  • The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman
  • Why Moms Are Weird by Pamela Ribon
  • The Rainmaker by John Grisham
  • Waiting To Exhale by Terry McMillan

Whitcoulls Challenge

I found this challenge and couldn't resist. The best part is that I can get started on it since all of my other challenges don't begin until January. I'm getting impatient if you can't tell. I've got tons of great books to read so it's hard to wait. There are twelve books to read for this challenge so here is my list with a couple of extras/alternates.
  • The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis (also for young adult challenge)
  • Bridget Jone's Diary by Helen Fielding
  • Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt
  • The Firm by John Grisham
  • Chocolat by Joanne Harris
  • I Know This Much Is True by Wally Lamb
  • Salem Falls by Jodi Piccoult
  • Holes by Louis Sachar
  • The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
  • The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  • The Tenth Circle by Jodi Piccoult


  • The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Grerory
  • The Lord of the Rings by J.R. Tolkien

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Themed Reading Challenge

This challenge is the perfect way to knock some books off my TBR list. Hooray! The challenge requires a minimum of four books...I can do this. My theme is books with a color in the title. Challenge number four, here I come.

My picks for this challenge are:
  • The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  • The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
  • Girl in Hyacinth Blue by Susan Vreeland
  • The Red Tent by Anita Diamant


  • Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  • The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Numbers Challenge

I joined my third challenge which is the numbers challenge. It's pretty easy and just requires me to read five books with a number in the title. I picked five books that are on my TBR list so that helps knock a few off. Yay! Of course, after reading reviews of what the other participants read for this challenge I'll probably end up adding ten more books to my list.. ;)

Here is my list:
  • Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Piccoult
  • Three by Ted Dekker
  • Thirteen Reasons Why (also young adult challenge)
  • I Have Lived A Thousand Years by Livia Bitton-Jackson
  • The Hundred Secret Senses by Amy Tan


  • Two For The Dough by Janet Evanovich
  • Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Young Adult Challenge

Here is the second challenge I've decided to join for 2008. It lasts all year long and consists of reading twelve books. I don't usually read young adult books so this will be fun and interesting for me.

Here is what I decided on:
  • I Am The Messenger by Marcus Zusak
  • Crank by Ellen Hopkins
  • 13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher
  • Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brasheres
  • Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly
  • The Third Eye by Lois Duncan
  • Inkheart by Cornelia Funke
  • The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
  • Twilight by Stephanie Meyer
  • Uglies by Scott Westerfield (also 1st in series challenge)
  • The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides
  • Harry Potter and the Sorceror's Stone by J.K. Rowling (1st in a series challenge)

First in a Series Challenge

I've joined my 1st official challenge. Yikes! I thought I would post my list here and then try adding it to the side later. These are all books that I'm excited to try and maybe I'll continue on with the series..we'll have to see. It lasts a whole year so I will have plenty of time to finish this one.

Here is my list:

  • Booked To Die by John Dunning
  • No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith
  • The Dark Tower I: The Gunslinger by Stephen King
  • Latte Trouble: A Coffeehouse Mystery by Cleo Coyle
  • Death By Darjeeling by Laura Childs
  • Them Bones by Caroly Haines
  • Morrigan's Cross by Nora Roberts
  • Harry Potter and the Sorceror's Stone by J.K. Rowling
  • Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris
  • The Eyre Affair by Jasper Forde
  • Uglies by Scott Westerfield
  • Deal Breaker by Harlan Coben

UPDATE: I'm going to add Deja Dead by Kathy Reichs and put it in place of Deal Breaker by Harlan Coben...if I have extra time I will read the Coben book also.

Challenge and Reading Blog

I've decided to take the plunge and create a blog for the books I read and challenges. I'm blog-illiterate so we'll see how it goes. Patience is key... :) I have decided to try and join a few challenges as well but none of them will start until January and I haven't joined any officially yet. Another thing for me to figure out. If you haven't already figured it out, I love to read. I've got a TBR list that is pages long. And I keep adding more! I love any type of book but mysteries always have a special place. Hoping to keep track of my reading through challenges while reading all types of books. Now I'm off to get started.