Monday, October 29, 2012

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? Oct. 29th

"Welcome to It’s Monday!  What Are You Reading!  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!" 

I can't remember the last time that I did one of these posts but since I'm actually reading (and quite a lot for me actually) I thought I would share with you all some of the books that I am reading.  Because I may or may not have realized that there are only two months left in 2012 (*cough* thanks Lisa) and SO MANY books that I still want to read.  Yikes!  Last week I finished up:

The Trouble with Magic by Madelyn Alt was a fun cozy mystery and a great beginning to this series.  I believe Wendy's review on it made me want to read it and I'm so glad that I did.

Dead Scared by S.J. Bolton was ABSOLUTELY AMAZING.  Until the end which wasn't as great but it didn't matter because the book was just SO GOOD!  I NEED the 3rd book!  NEED! 

This week I'm going to be working on a couple of ebooks that I keep putting aside (for no good reason other than I'm a moody reader):

I've barely started either of these but I started them both a month or so ago and set them aside during my reading slump.  Now that I seem to have snapped out of it, I'm ready to go back and revisit these worlds.  But I'll admit that I'm seriously considering reading this first:

After reading and loving My Scandalous Viscount by Galen Foley a couple weeks back I've been craving another good romance.  And this one has been on my shelves for way too long.  Hope you are all reading some good books!  And do you have any suggestions for books that I MUST read before the end of the year???  Inquiring minds want to know :)

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Audiobooks......and Me?

I should start this post off by telling you how much I hate cleaning.  Except I really don't hate it since I love the results but obviously find it no fun.  But that's a sidenote and not really the point of this story.  The point is that I've been ignoring all of you.  Yes, I admit it.  Whenever I go through my Google reader I see multiple posts in regards to audiobooks that other readers have listened to and enjoyed.  Or posts where they talk about how much they just enjoy audiobooks in general.  And I can't count the number of times that it has been suggested that I try an audiobook for myself.  That listening to books is fun.  I have ignored it all.  Because if I am anything, it is stubborn and often late to the game :) 

I've decided that's all going to change.  Scrubbing my kitchen today got me thinking....and thinking some more about how maybe I should just break down and give audiobooks a go.  My house could definitely use a little extra TLC and I might not dread cleaning so much if I had a way to occupy my mind.  So I'm going to take the plunge and try my 1st audiobook.  Because I'm an audiobook newbie, I've decided the best way to go about this is check an audiobook out from the library.  One, because I'm cheap.  And two, because I have no idea how this is all going to work out for me.  I might not like it...I'm sure there is a reason that I've been hesitating for so long.  Or not.  Then I started playing around with ideas on audiobooks that I might want to try.  I've decided that for me the best way to begin is with some rereads.  That way if I can't completely concentrate (hello my lovely children) it won't matter as much since I've already read the book.  Here are a few of the books that I'm considering trying:

 I've purposely kept this list short because I just don't know yet what to try.  That's where you all come in.  Audiobook suggestions, please????  What are some AMAZING books that I should try in audio format?  And do you have any tips for a newbie like me?  I'm hoping that it won't be that hard to put books on my MP3 player but if you have any tips for that share as well.  I'm all ears.....quite literally!

Let's all hope that my house becomes sparkling clean from all of this :)  Because a girl can dream, right?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

A Perfect Evil by Alex Kava (thoughts)

When I read the last page of A Perfect Evil, I wanted more.  No...scratch that....I needed more.  And I found myself frustrated that I didn't have the second book sitting right there ready to be read.  Because obviously I didn't know that I was going to NEED to read the second book instantly especially when the beginning of this book didn't really blow me away.  But by the end....oh the end just left me wanting to continue on and keep reading.  But I'm getting ahead of myself so let me tell you what this book is about.

A Perfect Evil is a thriller that begins when a young boy is found murdered after he had gone missing a few days earlier.  The murder is eerily similar to a couple of previous killings with the problem being that the convicted murderer for those crimes has been recently executed.  The question remains if the police have a copycat killer on their hands.  And then another boy goes missing....

I'm going to admit that at first I didn't think that I was going to like this book.  As a parent it is never easy for me to read books where the crimes being perpetrated are against children.  Plus, the author isn't afraid to share all of the gory details that went along with the killings and I started to pull away a bit as a reader.  The saving grace of the book for me was Maggie O'Dell and Sheriff Nick Morrelli.  Both main characters came across so realistically to me and both were flawed.  I loved that!  I found it all too easy to connect with both of the main characters which is always a positive in my opinion.  I found that for me these two made the book.  I loved the chemistry that developed between them, I appreciated the obstacles that they were up against, and I cannot wait to see what future books have in store for them.  Because nothing in this book was easy to figure out including the mystery itself.  And just when I thought that it was done and everything was figured out, I realized that there was more.  And maybe even a little more after that.  Let me tell you that these twists and turns really had me turning the pages.  I've already mentioned the ending but it bears repeating that the ending left me wanting.  I'm so eager to continue on that I'm already planning on grabbing the 2nd book when I visit the used bookstore next time.  Or if I decide I can't wait until then a library trip will be in order. 

Overall, this was a very solid thriller that was made better because of the main characters.  I liked that the author didn't give us all of the answers, and I found that it just made me more curious about future books.  My only warning before recommending this book is the violence against children issue.  If you are squeamish at all (and I was at times) when it comes to this, then you might not enjoy this book as much as I did.  I was able to get past it though mainly because of my curiosity and connection to the characters.  Otherwise, highly recommended!

Bottom Line:  A thriller that made me wish I had book 2 instantly!

Disclosure:  I bought my copy of this book from the used bookstore.  I just passed it on to my Mom because I thought it was that good :)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

E-Book Hoarder???

Please tell me that I'm not the only one that scours the internet for good deals on e-books.  Like once a day.  Seriously.  And I will also freely admit that I can NEVER not look at a blog post that advertises cheap reads for my reader.  Free books?  Even better!  I love, love, love finding good deals on books for my Kindle but the other day I came to realize that I'm turning into an e-book hoarder.  Maybe that's a little extreme....or maybe it isn't.  I will say that I seem to have quite the number of books loaded onto my e-reader ready for me to open up.  Yet I always seem to still want more.  I can't be the only one like this, can I????

I'm guessing I'm not the only reader out there that it finds it all too easy to click buy when the price of the book is right.  I thought it would be fun to share some of the books that I've picked up for my Kindle lately in the hopes that I will at least read a few of them sooner rather than later :)  Because I probably wouldn't feel so bad about acquiring all of these books if I was actually reading them.  LOL!  Here are the books that I've bought recently for my e-reader (a few were probably free):


What good e-book deals have you found lately????

In other news, WTF happened to being able to manipulate multiple pictures with blogger???  Do you see what my book covers look like on this post???  I don't even know how I managed to get them like this but I can tell you lots of R-rated words left my mouth.  And I hate it because I can't seem to align them the way I want to.  Why, why, why can I not figure out an easy way to put pictures side by side?  I HATE the new blogger because stuff like this should be easier and not harder.  Tell me someone has figured this out and can share tips with me.  I may end up stroking out otherwise :P

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Happy Birthday Nay Nay!

Happy Birthday to most precious 5 year old who has Pickle Baby to thank for the nickname Nay Nay!  (How appropriate that you nicknamed each other)  It seems like just yesterday that I was holding you in my arms for the first time.  I love you more than words can say....even when you change your outfit 5 times a day :)  You will always be my baby girl!  Happy Birthday!

Monday, October 15, 2012

My Scandalous Viscount by Gaelen Foley (thoughts)

I honestly don't think that I could have read this book at a better time because My Scandalous Viscount fit my mood perfectly!  An entertaining romance that kept me immersed in its' pages, this book was a joy to read and exactly what I was looking for.  Carissa isn't your typical proper lady but instead is a bit of a nosy busybody that finds herself entangled with the infamous Viscount Beauchamp.  After Sebastian and Carissa find themselves caught up in a precarious situation, they end up being pushed into marriage.  But Carissa's nose for ferreting out secrets instantly lands her in trouble when she learns more about her new husband than she was intended to.  Will her knack for finding out "information" end up being helpful or will it end up destroying their marriage before it even begins?

I love a romance that sweeps me into its' pages and carries me away!  I love when the hero and heroine have instant chemistry even while fighting their attraction to one another.  And I love when an author does the unexpected and keeps me guessing throughout the book.  My Scandalous Viscount fit the bill for me with all three of these things which made it a surefire hit for me!  The heat between Carissa and Sebastian started from page one and didn't let up until the very end.  I was rooting for them to find their happy ever after (yes I know this is a romance but still) from the beginning of the book.  I really liked Carissa's character and found her to be quite spunky at times.  I love a good heroine with a backbone so for me she made the book that much better!  This is my first book by Gaelen Foley and I had no clue that it was part of a series.  Other than not knowing some of the back story that the author alluded to, it didn't detract from my enjoyment of the book at all.  In fact, it made me want to go back to the beginning and grab book one so that I could experience all of the other romances for myself.  My favorite thing about this book though was that I never knew what to expect next in regards to the storyline.  Every time that I thought that I knew what was going to happen, then the author took the story in a more unexpected route.  I loved that!  Yes, maybe it made it all slightly less believable but I honestly didn't care.  Because like I said before, I was immersed in the book and just along for the ride.  This was the perfect way to break up some of the darker books that I have been reading lately (IT, I'm looking at you!).

Altogether a delightful read and an author that I will read more of.  If the other books in this series have the chemistry in them that this one did, I will be set!  This is a book that I would highly recommend to fellow romance readers especially those who love historical romance!  And since reading this book out of order didn't take away from my enjoyment, I say start here or read from the beginning of the series.  It sure didn't matter to me.

Bottom Line:  The perfect read for a rainy day when you need a good romance to suck you in!

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book thanks to TLC Book Tours.  The thoughts are my own but I do think that you should check out the other stops on the tour to see other readers' opinions :) 

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Deadly Descendant by Jenna Black (thoughts)

Second books in a planned series are quite a tricky maneuver in my opinion as the world building has already been started in the first book and the series isn't ending.  Happily enough Deadly Descendant blew the first book out of the water in my opinion and left me wanting more!  In this installment, Nikki is up against a mysterious man who seems to be causing random fatal "wild dog attacks".  Interestingly enough, these aren't actual wild dogs but instead are deadly jackals which have the ability to harm even an immortal like Nikki herself.  Nikki will have to figure out who is controlling the jackals while also keeping herself out of harms way.  But who better than an immortal descendant like herself??

As soon as I cracked this book open, I knew that I was going to be well and truly hooked.  The story started off with a bang and just kept going throughout.  I love a book that keeps me turning pages without taking the time to check and see how far along I am or how many pages I might have left.  This was one of those books.  I just HAD to see what was going to happen next and I was finished before I knew it.  I loved that while Nikki is still learning about her new abilities and skills, her character grew stronger and more self confident in this book.  She was more kick-ass which is never a bad thing in my opinion :)  I also enjoyed the fact that the author took strands from the first story and really tied them into this storyline.  I'm curious to see what will happen in the next book especially in regards to Anderson and his wife.  Hmmm...the plot thickens.  And Jamaal.  Yum!  I seriously hope that we get to see more of his character in the 3rd book and learn more of his history.  I'm so intrigued!

Overall, this was an amazingly strong follow-up to Dark Descendant!  I. Need. More!  I love the way the author was able to continue on the storyline from book one without telling it all over again.  I'm anxious to see the way the ending of this book will play out in regards to the next book.  I want more of Nikki and Jamaal!  I just plain want more of this series!  The series is fresh and different from a lot of what is out there in urban fantasy which makes me like it all the more.  And I really enjoyed the fact that this book was darker and grittier than the first.  Because you should all know by now that I love a dark urban fantasy series.  My favorite!  Highly recommended!

Bottom Line:  A surprisingly good follow-up to Dark Descendant and actually WAY better than Dark Descendant if I'm being honest!

Disclosure:  Checked out from my local library.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

On My Wishlist (Radar) #14

On My Wishlist is my way of sharing all of the books that I cannot wait to get my hands upon and read. These are a mixture of books that are about to be released along with some older titles that I really want to read as well. (All summaries are from Goodreads).

I haven't done one of these posts for awhile now but that sure doesn't mean that I'm not adding to my TBR on a daily basis.  In the spirit of R.I.P. VII, I thought that I would share some horror reads that have been added to my wishlist lately (along with a few others of course).  Here are some of the books that I'm just dying (LOL!) to get my hands on:

The Uninvited by Liz Jensen
"A seven-year-old girl puts a nail gun to her grandmother's neck and fires. An isolated incident, say the experts. The experts are wrong. Across the world, children are killing their families. Is violence contagious? As chilling murders by children grip the country, anthropologist Hesketh Lock has his own mystery to solve: a bizarre scandal in the Taiwan timber industry." 

I cut the summary on this one short because just reading this was enough to creep my out!  And look at that freaky cover...I MUST read this one!  I was lucky enough to get an advance copy for my Kindle and I'm chomping at the bit to begin it.  As soon as I finish some of the other books that I've already started I will be diving in to this one!

Your House Is on Fire, Your Children All Gone by Stefan Kiesbye

"The village of Hemmersmoor is a place untouched by time and shrouded in superstition: There is the grand manor house whose occupants despise the villagers, the small pub whose regulars talk of revenants, the old mill no one dares to mention. This is where four young friends come of age—in an atmosphere thick with fear and suspicion. Their innocent games soon bring them face-toface with the village's darkest secrets in this eerily dispassionate, astonishingly assured novel, evocative of Stephen King's classic short story "Children of the Corn" and infused with the spirit of the Brothers Grimm."

Another freaky cover!  Look at that little girl's eyes!  I'll be hiding this one in my drawer at night when I read it but read it I must!  I have no idea why I enjoy horror novels so much by the way...they all freak me out.  Yet I can't stop wanting to read them :)

The Haunting of Maddy Clare by Simone St. James

"Sarah Piper's lonely, threadbare existence changes when her temporary agency sends her to assist a ghost hunter. Alistair Gellis-rich, handsome, scarred by World War I, and obsessed with ghosts- has been summoned to investigate the spirit of nineteen-year-old maid Maddy Clare, who is haunting the barn where she committed suicide. Since Maddy hated men in life, it is Sarah's task to confront her in death. Soon Sarah is caught up in a desperate struggle. For Maddy's ghost is real, she's angry, and she has powers that defy all reason. Can Sarah and Alistair's assistant, the rough, unsettling Matthew Ryder, discover who Maddy was, where she came from, and what is driving her desire for vengeance-before she destroys them all?"

I love the sound of this one!  And the cover is pretty awesome as well.  I have this one checked out from the library already but I think I'm going to have to send it back unread since it is due.  I'll definitely be checking it out again though as it sounds like my kind of book!

The House at Midnight by Lucie Whitehouse

"On an icy winter weekend, seven friends celebrate New Year’s Eve at Stoneborough, a grand manor in the English countryside. They’ve been brought together by Lucas Heathfield, a young man who recently inherited the property after the tragic death of his uncle Patrick. Though still raw from the loss of his last family member, Lucas welcomes this tight-knit group of friends to the estate he hopes will become their home away from home–an escape from London where they can all relax and rekindle the revelry of their college days."

I'm cutting the summary for this one short too but I'll admit that I skimmed the rest and it left me intrigued.  This is an older book but one that I cannot wait to get my hands on either.  I just need to grab a copy from the library the next time that I am there!  (And I'm pretty sure that I was sold after the phrase "icy winter weekend".  Sounds like a perfect fit for R.I.P. VII!  Too bad my library isn't open on Sundays.)

A Dangerous Liaison with Detective Lewis by Jillian Stone

"Special Inspector Rafael Lewis hasn’t seen the woman he jilted on the night of their engagement ball in five years. Fanny Greyville-Nugent has spent five years working side-by-side with her recently deceased father, a captain of industry in the steam revolution. When Detective Lewis and the Scotland Yard suspect that the late Mr. Greyville-Nugent was targeted for murder by an anarchist group determined to stop the proliferation of machines in the workforce, Lewis must guard his former fiancĂ©e with his life—much to her chagrin.

As Rafe and Fanny set out across the countryside from Edinburgh to London, danger lurks around every corner, but the biggest danger might turn out to be the embers of their previously smothered attraction smoldering to life."

Yay, yay, yay!  My current read has me in the mood for some more good romances and I loved the first book in this series!  Loved it!  I had no idea that this one was out already but I NEED it.  Seriously, I'm off to see if my library website has this one right now!  (And what gorgeous covers this series has!)

I think that this is enough out of me for today.  What books have you added to your wishlist recently?  Please tell!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

On My Nightstand (October Edition)

October is already here and I have lots of good reading ahead of me.  That is if I actually find the time to get some reading done.  Yikes!  Here are just a few of the books that I'm hoping to read in October. 
  • My Scandalous Viscount by Gaelen Foley- This is a review book for a TLC book tour that I will be hosting on the 15th of October.  You'll have to check back then to hear my thoughts on it.
  • Promises in Death by J.D. Robb-  I'm flying through this one which is kinda nice since my reading has been pretty pathetic lately.
  • It by Stephen King-  Still chugging along with this one although I'm way behind when it comes to the read-a-long.  I'm loving the creepy feel of it too.  Perfect fall weather reading!
  • On my Kindle I'm reading Tarnished by Karina Cooper.  Good so far but I have a tendency to read my actual physical books rather than ebooks.  Hmmm...
  • The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters-  So I totally missed the read-a-long with this one but I'm still planning on reading it for Carl's R.I.P. event.  I've cracked this one open but haven't gotten very far yet.
What else am I planning on reading in October???  The list could go on and on but it just might be the 3 other TBR choice books from my Goodreads groups.  I didn't end up reading any of my September choices but I also had a pretty bad month of reading.  I'm hoping to chance that in October but I'm shaking my head right now just thinking about it.  There are just WAY too many books that I want to read.  Thank goodness there is a read-a-thon coming up soon!  I'm gonna need it!  What's on your nightstand for October??

Monday, October 1, 2012

So Pretty It Hurts by Kate White (thoughts)

So Pretty It Hurts had all of the ingredients of a good mystery in the making but unfortunately I found it to be lacking.  Part of this may be my fault as I'm jumping in to the middle of a series (which I absolutely hate) but I didn't realize when I picked it up that it was part of a series.  The story begins when Bailey Weggins goes on a weekend away with a close friend of hers to a house in the country.  Bailey finds herself closed in with a bunch of strangers including a famous model named Devin Barr while a snowstorm brews outside.  When Devin is found dead the real mystery begins...

Like I said previously, this book had all of the ingredients for a really good thriller or mystery.  An isolated house in the country, a snowstorm that cuts off contact with the rest of the world, a dead body....what more could you ask for?  For whatever reasons though, this book just didn't quite work for me.  One of my main problems that I had was that I never connected with Bailey.  I'm not sure that if I had read the previous books in this series if it would be an issue but I just never quite figured Bailey out.  Her actions and need to "figure out" the mystery just rang a bit false.  And I just didn't connect which took away from my enjoyment of the book.  On a more positive note, I really enjoyed the creepy setting that the author created with this book.  I loved the tense atmosphere during the time of the snowstorm and after Devin's body had been found.  The author has a knack for creating really great settings as I felt similarly when I read The Sixes by her.  I just wish that I had been more interested in the mystery and characters in this book.

Overall, I found that this just wasn't the book that I had been expecting.  I didn't hate it by any means but found it to only be an okay read.  If you are thinking about trying this author, I would recommend The Sixes instead which I found to be a much better read.  As for me, I think that I'll go back and start with book one in this series at some point.  Because I'm hoping that it will help with my lack of connection to Bailey and because the author has such a knack for great settings.  Recommended with reservations (unless you are already a fan of this series...then I'm sure that you will enjoy it more than I did).

Bottom Line:  A mystery that could have been so much more...

Disclosure:  I was sent a copy of this book from the publisher.  The thoughts are my own.

I thought I should share a link to my thoughts on The Sixes since I enjoyed this book so much more.