Thursday, June 27, 2013

F is For Fugitive by Sue Grafton (thoughts)

This is one of my absolute favorite mystery series!  It is also a series that constantly makes me wonder why I don't read more books like this when I enjoy them so much.  I don't quite have the answer to that but it is probably something that I should explore.  In other words, I need to find more mysteries just like this! 

In this book, Kinsey is hired to investigate a seventeen year old murder.  With the odds stacked against her from almost the very beginning, Kinsey begins to ask questions trying to figure out the details of what happened that night.  The convicted murderer is still proclaiming his innocence and things aren't all as clean cut as they seem.  But with all of the questions that Kinsey is asking, it isn't long before she finds herself in danger.  Can she really unearth evidence to find the truth behind a murder that happened so long ago?  And will she be able to make it out alive if she does?

I'm positive that in every review that I've written about books in this series I've talked about my love of Kinsey's character.  I can't not mention it because it plays such an important role in my enjoyment of these books.  Kinsey is so easy to relate to but the author has really taken the time to flesh her out into something so much more.  I like her plain and simple.  She doesn't hesitate to tell a little white lie (for the good of her investigation of course), she likes simple things, isn't high maintenance, and is the most persistent type of character I've ever come across in a book.  She never gives up or stops asking questions even when it feels like her investigation is going nowhere or just running in circles.  I like that about her!  I really appreciate how easy it is for me to find myself lost in these books trying to find the answer to the mystery along with Kinsey.  I never seem to be able to figure it out but the fun is in the trying!

This is one of those series that I will never hesitate to recommend.  I've got my Mom reading them and I'm constantly handing off my copies to my sister with the hope that she will enjoy them as much as I have.  Kinsey is a throwback to a time before computers and electronics played such an important role in our every day life.  It is fun to see her solve mysteries without using high tech gadgets and laboratory findings; instead she figures everything out just using her inquisitiveness and some good old common sense.  This book was another great addition to this series and exactly what I have come to expect from this author!

Overall, another amazing book in this series.  Yes some are better than others, but I have yet to find a book by Grafton that I haven't enjoyed.  Now I just need to get my hands on a copy of G is for Gumshoe!  I've been buying my copies of these books from my local used bookstore, and I LOVE the old covers that I've found.  But the last two times that I was there I couldn't find a copy to take home with me so I'm probably going to have to hit the library until I come across one.  Because eventually this is a series that I would like to own in its' entirety.  The books are just that good!

Bottom Line:  A series that is a must-read in my opinion!  But you most definitely should start with the first book!

Disclosure:  I purchased a copy of this book from my local used bookstore.  It was worth every penny!

Monday, June 24, 2013

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (June 24th)

It's Monday! is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey and states:

"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!"

Woohoo for summer reading!!  I've been contemplating coming up with a post of ALL the books that I would like to read this summer.  It wouldn't be realistic because I always have a tendency to go overboard but it might be fun.  What do you all think??  I'm also planning on going to the library tomorrow with the kiddos so hopefully a library loot post will pop up this week.  I've been browsing my Goodreads' TBR list and my library catalog trying to figure which books I want to grab.  Am I the only one that goes to the library with a mental list of books in mind???  I have a tendency to just browse the shelves too but it can be hard with three kiddos serving as a distraction :)  Anyways, here is what I've been reading since I last shared with all of you:

Feed by Mira Grant left me an emotional mess after I finished my reread of it.  I cried (again) and basically decided that I wasn't quite ready to continue on with Deadline.  So then came the question of what book could possibly follow up to the AMAZINGNESS of Feed.

Bronze Gods by A.A. Aguirre is a book that I had on my TBR list as soon as I heard about it.  I couldn't resist reading it since I found a copy at the library.  And while I had a few issues with it at times, overall it was the perfect read for me as it was completely different than Grant's zombiefied world.  I'm super excited to read the next book in this series even though I will once again have to wait patiently for it.

I'm currently rereading:

Yep, I'm back and immersed in with the zombies once again!  I'm so looking forward to reading Blackout and seeing how this all ends (even if I'm half dreading the ending as well).  After I finish this I will probably pick up a book for in between before I read the series' ending book. 

In other bookish news, I've added a few new books to my e-reader for review that I'm really looking forward to reading.  It sounds like Staci is going to be doing a Kindle clean up challenge again soon and boy do I need it!  Here is what I added:

OH MY GOODNESS! Chevy Stevens!  I'm SO EXCITED about this one!!!!  Still Missing was AMAZING and a book that I STILL think about!  I haven't read her second book yet but I have this one ready for my enjoyment.  Yayayayaya!  Close My Eyes is another thriller that sounds super good.  I can't wait to try it! 

Here is to lots of good reading!  Happy Monday!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Wicked As She Wants by Delilah S. Dawson (thoughts)

Wicked As She Wants was a delight to read and such a strong follow-up to the first book that it managed to cement my love for this series!  It was up against a tall order too because although I enjoyed Wicked As They Come it was only a good read for me, and I wasn't completely positive that I would continue on with the series.  Wicked As She Wants blew the first book out of the water though and I most definitely will be reading more in this series!!

In this book we get to know Ahnastasia, a blud Princess from the land of Muscovy, that Casper finds nearly dead locked up in a suitcase.  Ahna has no idea how she got in there nor does she have any idea who has killed her parents or why.  But she does know that it is her duty to return to her homeland and take her rightful place as the Queen.  Ahna manages to convince Casper to help her on this whirlwind adventure filled with blud pirates, danger, and even a little bit of desire.  But it will take everything that both Casper and Ahna have to overthrow the "new" Queen of Muscovy that has taken over while Ahna has been gone.  Can the spoiled princess become a real Queen?

This book had everything that you can ask for: passion, adventure, mystery, and even a dash of humor.  I loved it so much and found myself easily caught within the pages from the very beginning.  The chemistry between Ahna and Casper is almost instantaneous and I loved watching their relationship develop.  It was also nice to get to know Casper's character more as he plays a semi-important role in the first book.  I wish I could tell you exactly what worked better for me with this book compared to the first but it isn't one certain thing.  I think that I just really connected with the characters more in this book!  The adventure that Ahna and Casper found themselves on was such a whirlwind and it kept me turning the pages as fast as I could!  I especially loved the scene when Ahna is boarding the airship...I couldn't help but laugh even though I'm terrified of heights myself.  I wasn't sure how the book was going to end but the author did an amazing job with it!  I sincerely hope that we get to see a bit more of Ahna and Casper in future books because this one book just wasn't enough!  And before I forget it was also a nice touch in my opinion the way the author managed to fit Tish and Criminy in without making it an issue if you haven't read the first book.  I just can't wait to read more of this series!

All in all, this book was everything that I hoped it would be and so much more!  It has me super excited to see where this author takes this series next.  From the teaser I read at the back of the book, it looks like I will be in for a treat.  Now I'm just going to have to be patient and wait for that next book to come out.  I sure hate the waiting part!  I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this one but especially for fans of both paranormal romance and steampunk!

Bottom Line:  Such a good read!  I can't wait for more!

Disclosure:  I was sent a copy of this book for review from the publisher.  Actually two by accident.  One came from NetGalley and one was a surprise I found in my mailbox.  I love those!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Monday Madness (or Family Fun)

I seem to be only posting on Mondays lately.  Such is the end of baseball season where they seem to cram all of the games in at once.  Busy, busy doesn't even really begin to cover it but the end is in sight and soon my evenings during the week will be my own again.  I AM excited!  In other good news, I passed my certification period!!!  Woohoo!  I'm super excited and am ready to develop my own rhythm/routine for at work.  The best part was that we got to spend this past weekend up on the houseboat relaxing and having fun.  The kids had a blast (they always do) and they were even brave enough to go swimming in the ice cold water.  It was fun and I snapped up a bunch of pictures to share with you all.  Here are a few of my favorites:

Haha! I could barely get him to stop smiling so that he wouldn't get water in his mouth.  Wouldn't you know I would snap the picture with his eyes closed?

 I think this is the best picture that I took with all three of them even though I snapped a zillion others.

 My daughter wore this hat off and on all weekend.  Too funny!

This picture isn't from this weekend but it is of my son pitching for the very 1st time ever.  He did an AMAZING job and I was so proud!

The big boys went fishing for Father's day so my Mom and I took the "littles" to the park.  Lots of fun and a great way to keep them entertained!

More park fun!  It never fails to amaze me how big she is getting so fast :)

It was a great weekend and one of my favorite ways to spend the summer!  Now I just need to get all of these pictures I keep taking off of my camera and printed off.  Happy Monday!

Monday, June 10, 2013

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (June 10th)

It's Monday! is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey and states:

"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'm feeling like my reading mojo is coming back all thanks to my reread of Feed.  I'm already sucked into the world that Grant has created and it is so INTENSE!  I've read more in the last week then I have in two...that feels good!  There is a week long read-a-thon going on this week that I'm signing up for that will hopefully allow for me to finish up Feed (and hopefully a few other books).  I've already told you that I've got big reading plans for June so now I just need to follow thru with my actual plans.  LOL!  :)  Last week I finished:

The Truth of All Things by Kiernan Shields was a really good historical mystery that kept me engrossed the entire time.  I'm excited to read more by this author and I'm looking forward to writing up my review soon.  But this is definitely a book that I would recommend!

I'm currently reading:

Which may be one of my favorite books EVER!  Seriously.  I'm loving re-experiencing this book again and it is just as good as I remembered!  This makes me all so excited to read Blackout and see how this trilogy ends.  Staci you MUST read these!

Speaking of must read books, thanks to Lisa I couldn't resist adding a few books to my kindle.  I bought the following two books for my ereader:

I feel like these are MUST reads after reading Lisa's thoughts on this series and I can't wait to start these!  I'm hoping to slip A Night to Surrender in after I finish up Feed.  So these are my reading plans for the week and the Wicked Wildfire Read-a-thon.  Happy Monday and happy reading!!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Wicked Becomes You by Meredith Duran (thoughts)

Summary from Goodreads:

"Gwen Maudsley is pretty enough to be popular, and plenty wealthy, too. But what she’s best known and loved for is being so very, very nice. When a cad jilts her at the altar—again—the scandal has her outraged friends calling for blood. Only Gwen has a different plan. If nice no longer works for her, then it’s time to learn to be naughty. Happily, she knows the perfect tutor—Alexander Ramsey, her late brother’s best friend and a notorious rogue."

My Thoughts:

This is one of those books that I waited entirely too long to read.  I don't even want to mention the number of times that I checked this book out from the library and then let it go back unread.  I should really stop doing that!  On the positive side, I found a new author to follow and a new backlist of books to check out.  

I feel like 2013 has been the year for me to really dip my toes into the historical romance genre.  I'm loving every minute of it!  From almost the very beginning of this book I found myself caught up in the relationship between Gwen and Alex.  They were just perfect for each other in my opinion even if they hadn't figured it out for themselves.  And that's half of the fun for me...watching the romance develop and grow between a couple with a few stumbles along the way.  Alex and Gwen had more than there share of struggles though, and by the end of the book I was more than ready for them to find their happy ever after!  Seriously, I almost threw the book at one point when towards the end it seemed like everything was falling apart.  LOL!  I was that into this book!  There were also a few really cute parts in the beginning of this book that had me cracking up.  I love when that happens!  I thought the author did a very nice job with the ending though and I was left feeling more than satisfied.  All romance books should be this good!  

Let's sum it all up:  I enjoyed it lots and can't wait to read more from this author!  It's exciting for me especially because this is a new to me author so I have lots more of her books to look forward to (I hope...I honestly don't know how many she has written.)  But I know she has written more and I can't wait to read them!  I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this book to fans of historical romance.  And if you aren't reading historical romances yet....then why the heck aren't you?  You're definitely missing out especially if you are a fan of romance at all!  I'm kicking myself for not really trying this genre sooner.  Recommended!

Bottom Line:  A book that has helped to cement my new found love for historical romance!  

Disclosure:  Checked out from my lovely local library a number of times before I actually read it.  But definitely worth the wait!

Have you read Duran before?  Which of her books should I read next?  And the biggest question of all:  what other historical romance authors should I be reading????  These are the things that a girl needs to know!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

On My Nightstand: June Edition

Plans....I usually have lots of them even if I don't end up following through with all of them :)  This month I've got big reading plans as usual even if I'm reading little to none.  I hate that because it is my favorite way to relax but life gets crazy sometimes.  It sure doesn't mean that I'm going to not plan on reading bunches!  Because there is a week long read-a-thon coming up and a few quiet weekends hopefully in my near future.  Here are some of the books that I'm hoping to read in the month of June:

Yep, I'm going all out and submersing myself in Grant's Newsflesh trilogy!!!  I'm SUPER EXCITED to reread the first two books since reading them rocketed Grant onto my favorite author list!  I LOVED FEED AND DEADLINE SO MUCH THAT JUST TALKING ABOUT THEM MAKES ME EXCITED TO REREAD THEM ALL OVER AGAIN!  And then I'm going to do it.  I'm finally going to read Blackout and see how it all ends.  I'm nervous/excited/scared and all at the same time.  It's going to be great!!!!!!!  I'm also hoping to read a few other books like the following:

These are the latest books that I picked up from the library excluding The Chief which is a review copy.  I'm chomping at the bit (ha chomping) to read them all but first I'm diving back into Feed.  I'm pretty sure that June may end up being my best reading month ever with all of these books!!!  What are you planning on reading this month??