Monday, May 29

The Weekend

Is it possible to get a 4 year old to sleep past 5:30 in the morning? We've tried room darkening shades, putting him to bed later, lots of physical activity and still we're up every morning with the birds.

I don't normally get much time on-line on the weekend, but this morning, the hubby went back to sleep and Junior's playing in his room. I've promised to make French Toast for breakfast, but I'll wait for Chris to wake up again.

We took the little train fiend to the Trolley Museum in Kingston. For $4 they take you on a ride on a trolley converted from electric to diesel. Junior had a great time. The trolley took us past the Rondout Lighthouse. The ride was very nice once we got passed the metal scrap and junk yard. The ride brings you all the way out into the Hudson River at the Point. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries this was the point where steam ships would bring tourists heading to the Catskills, they could pick up a train that would then take them all through the mountains. We also visited the Hudson River Maritime Museum. Junior wasn't all that impressed, nothing to ride on, though I do think during the summer they may offer tourist rides out to the lighthouse. He did scare the hell out of himself when he clanked a huge bell.

Today, our little village has it's annual Memorial Day Parade, we'll walk into town and watch and honor all our veterans.

My dad is veteran of the Korean War. He doesn't talk much about it, but then he did spend much of his time there recovering from a very bad Jeep accident that crushed his right leg. While he was in the hospital, the Red Cross had to track him down for my grandparent, it seems Dad was a horrible letter writer. But, he really was a good son, he would send home almost his entire allotment check, leaving himself with very little. Of course, he would write when he needed money to cover his poker losses. I guess, he didn't play cards while in the hospital. When my Grandmother passed away all of Dad's old letters were given to my Mom, we all have a huge laugh at them, every letter followed the same basic format...Dear Folks, Hope this letter finds all well, give love to the girls [his younger sisters], I'm fine, please send money... then followed some sort of explanation why. Dad still isn't much of a communicator, if he answers the phone, it's sounds something like this... Yeah... How's my grandson... Here talk to your Mother... It took us years to get him not to curse when an answer machine picked up. Dad's a little gruff, but we love him.

Well, sorry for the ramble, I'm not sure if it's made me hungry or the hunger is making me vague--LOL. Off to make breakfast. If the hubby isn't up in time, he'll have to have his FT reheated.

One more thing, I've broken away from Linda Howard, finished Emma Holly's Menage and am now reading Her Scandalous Marriage, by Leslie LaFoy. The EH was okay, maybe I'll blog about it, but the LLF is wonderful.

Have a great day and happy reading.

Friday, May 26

Midnight Rainbow aka Book 100 in 2006

Read Midnight Rainbow... check

Still love Grant and Jane... check

A Pleasant Surprise

This morning I was too lazy to run back upstairs to grab Linda Howard's Midnight Rainbow. On my way out the door I picked up a book off my downstairs bookshelf, Alison Kent's Goes Down Easy. I've had this book for months, but I don't read much category, I know I need to change this, but for some reason it really is the last type of romance I reach for. I grabbed it simply because I figured I'd be able to finish it while Junior was in school.

Well, wasn't I surprised when it turned out to be a spin-off of Four Men & A Lady. I liked 4M&AL, but I thoroughly enjoyed GDE. It's going on my keeper shelf. I've read a few other Alison Kent's in the past, and liked them. But, this one's made me a fan, she's going on my autobuy list.

May TBR Challenge

This month's Challenge:

Military/Police themed book in honor of Memorial Day OR an ebook/book in print that was first an ebook.

I decided to go with the Military/Police themed book, one of each, but my Military one isn't a traditional one and my Police themed one is a reread.

Title: Ride The Fire

Author: Pamela Clare

Year published: 2005

Why did you get this book? Can't remember if I bought it or traded for it.

Do you like the cover? Okay

Did you enjoy the book? Keeper

Was the author new to you and would you read something by this author again? No and Yes

Are you keeping it or passing it on? Keeper

Anything else? I loved this book, set in 1760's it's not what one might think of as a traditional military story, but it does take place the French/Indian War. If you love Last of the Mohicans, you'll love this book. This is not a "Wallpaper" historical. Pamela Clare sucks you into the historical aspects of the story, to the point you feel like you need to catch your breath as they're on the run. Yesterday, I picked up her March 2006 release Surrender, simply on the strength of this book.

The Police themed book:

Title: Dream Man

Author: Linda Howard

Year published: 1994

Why did you get this book? I've had to buy this book a couple of times because I've worn out old copies or loaned them and never got them back

Do you like the cover? Okay

Did you enjoy the book? Keeper

Was the author new to you and would you read something by this author again? No and Yes

Are you keeping it or passing it on? Keeper

Anything else? Gee, have I mentioned I love Linda Howard's books? I blogged a little about this one the other day... here.

Sorry, I know I should write full reviews for both, but I'm being lazy. I thought I'd have a print book that was originally an ebook to write about, but realized I read them last month not this month. I've still got time, maybe I'll find something else to use for the challenge.

Thursday, May 25

a couple of thoughts...

Perhaps I'm showing my age, but was anyone else sad to see Arnette Lambs' covers snarked at over on Smart Bitches?

Way back when, she was one of my favorite authors. I'd wait on pins and needles for her new books to come out, and was so sad when she passed away. Rather than laughing at her old covers, they made me rather nostalgic for her books, I've not reread one in years, I wonder if it's even possible to find her oldies but goodies. They may not hold up well through time, but they really were favorites back then.

I'm done being melancholy.

On to something else...

I loved Lydia Joyces description of "wallpaper" historicals, and thought LLG was being rather dense through the whole thing.

Then I saw a little post by Maili, that got me thinking...

Well, for me - for what it's worth - GUILTY PLEASURES is a wallpaper historical and TO DREAM AGAIN is not.

Doesn't perspective also determine whether or not a historical is "wallpaper" or not?

Guilty Pleasures is set in England. If I'm not mistaken To Dream Again is set in America, ***edited--I'm wrong, it's set in Victorian England, thanks, Wendy*** it's been years since I've read this book and to be honest, I have no memory of what it's about, so there is no way I can say whether or not it's historically strong or accurate, I'll take Maili's word for it. But, I did reread Guilty Pleasures last month, and I didn't think it was a wallpaper historical and I wonder if it's because of where it was set and the use of a Roman archeological site as a backdrop. Clearly I'm clueless when it comes to British history, but I found the "dig" rather interesting, of course, I have no idea how accurate it was or wasn't.

During the recent plagarism scandal many people found fault with the inaccuracies of the writer's Indian heritage. If I had read this book, I'd have no idea whether or not it was correct and would assume it was.

Am I, as an American, more likely to take for granted the history in a book set in America? Probably not. Am I going to nit pick the historical inaccuracy? Probably, so I do think perspective matters.

The Bad Boy Thing

I'm going to preface everything by saying I liked this book. Each story was fun and each read very quickly and smoothly. Here's a link to Romantic Times' synopsis. Alyssa has a really good review over on The Romance Reader.

I don't have a problem with any of the stories, I've already said I liked all of them. I've got a teeny, tiny problem with the title When Good Things Happen to Bad Boys. Maybe I read too much Anne Stuart, but I wouldn't consider any of these "Bad Boys" bad.

This left me wondering, what exactly constitutes a Bad Boy?

Is it a misspent youth?

Or, are they somehow manipulative?

Do they keep dark secrets?

Do they do bad deeds?

Or, are they really good time boys grown up to decent good men?

Okay, I grasp the difference, but I'm wondering what other readers think about the term "Bad Boys".

Tuesday, May 23

Still reading LH and the June book order

Finished Duncan's Bride and started Heart of Fire, which I haven't read in years and years, my copy is so yellowed it's distracting, but I'm loving the cranky hero.

I decided to order all my new books through my local UBS/indie bookseller. I've felt guilty shopping at WalMart and B&N when I know she could use the business. My only defense is I have to wait a little longer for the books from her as she doesn't get them until after the publisher release date, not much of a defense.

For years I ordered from them as it was convenient when I worked. I'd read RT and make a list, I learned long ago not to trust the actual star count, but the synopses are usually very good. So, yesterday while Junior was in school, I made my list...

  • Love is in the Heir -- Kathryn Caskie, I haven't loved this series, but I've really liked it, I think this may be the last, hopefully it's worth getting new.
  • She's No Princess -- Laura Lee Guhrke, one of my biggest reading fears is she is slowly being homogenized by Avon.
  • The Hazard's of Hunting a Duke -- Julia London, no idea why this one seems interesting, I've disliked just about everything she's written in the last few years, but I really hope this one moves back towards her early books.
  • Sinful Pleasures -- Mary Reed McCall, enjoyed the first book in this series, Beyond Temptation, and good medievals are few and far between.
  • In Enemy Hands -- Michelle Perry, this got a nice review over on Paperback Reader, I thought I'd give it a try.
  • Vanquised -- Hope Tarr, Wendy mentioned this back in March, and when I saw the ad (technically, I don't think it's out until July) I decided to order it.
  • Squeeze Play -- Kate Angell, what can I say, I'm a sucker for a baseball book.
  • The Turning -- Jennifer Armintrout, I really liked the synopsis, hopefully it's a good one.
  • Dark Need -- Lynn Viehl, you either love this series or hate it, technically, I wouldn't really call it romance, but an interesting romance/horror hybrid. Good vs. Evil and yet, you never know who is good and who is evil, you kind of think you know and then, well, it's interesting. And for die hard romance readers the HEAs sometimes seem somewhat vague.
  • Cover of Night -- Linda Howard, well duh, considering I'm on a LH binge.

When Good Things Happen to Bad Boys was on the list, but she already had it in stock, so I picked it up yesterday when I dropped off the order list. I've read two of the three stories, you can probably guess which one I haven't read yet, hehehe. I'm actually going to finish all three stories and write something about the whole thing later this week.

Have a good one, and happy reading.

Sunday, May 21

I finally broke down and did it...

Sybil should be proud, I finally broke down and bought a Bad Boy Book. from the blurb...



I've heard absolutely nothing about this book, but I liked the back blurb, so I bought it.

I also ordered this one. Now most know LF isn't a favorite of mine, but Erin McCarthy is and I love HelenKay's blog and Paperback Reader review site.

I finished Linda Howard's Open Season and started Duncan's Bride.

I pulled some of her oldies off my bookshelves, some I haven't read in years. We'll see how they've held up...
  • Heart of Fire
  • Touch of Fire
  • Almost Forever
  • Midnight Rainbow
  • Diamond Bay

I've also pulled out a couple I'm pretty sure haven't held up well...

  • Come Lie With Me
  • Tears of the Renegade

And if I haven't ODed on Linda Howard, I'll pull out...

  • Son of the Morning
  • The MacKenzies
  • Lady of the West
  • Angel Creek

Have a good one and happy reading.

Friday, May 19

Linda Howard Glom

I finished Linda Howard's Shades of Twilight today. It's not my favorite Howard, but I don't hate it either. Roanna is rather like a numb doormat with occasional flashes of backbone. Webb is yet another of LH's alphas.

Tonight it's Open Season, tomorrow will be another LH. I doubt I'll be reading anything but Linda Howard for the next week or two.

I'm officially on a Linda Howard Rereading Binge. And when I'm done, I'll probably buy her new one Cover of Night.

I've decided for at least the weekend I'm avoiding all the debating, though I think things have quieted down somewhat.

I may not be posting anything new until Monday, but I'll be popping in and doing some blog hopping. Saturday we're going to an airshow and Sunday is our 23rd wedding anniversary.

Have a great weekend and happy reading.

Thursday, May 18

This thing we do...

I've said it before and I'll say it again... We're all crazy.

Things must have been too quiet in romanceland so some of us are feeling the need to stir things up a little, okay maybe a lot.

Writers sniping at readers, readers snarking at writers--gee whiz, can't we try to get along *eyes rolling, can you see the eyes rolling*. Go to your respective corners and come out swinging. Debating for the sake of debating, not really getting anywhere.

To quote Maili:

So, basically: a reader shouldn’t come between an author and her book, and the author shouldn’t come between the book and its reader? Is this what everyone’s agreeing on?

There it is, it works for me. Somehow this got lost in the middle of the night over on Smart Bitches.

The writing process, whether art, craft or work is for the author. The reading process, whether for pleasure, escape or personal growth is for the reader.

When the author masters her art, craft or job, hopefully readers find whatever the heck it is we're looking for.

Somehow we meet in the middle and make nice, maybe.

Wednesday, May 17

After the Night by Linda Howard

I love this book. If I've read it once, I've read it or parts of it 50 times in the last 10 years, no exaggeration.

Most of us know the plot--poor girl, rich boy, he throws her family off his property and out of town when it's assumed her slutty mom has left town with his tom catting dad.

Ah, but there is more to it than that. It's twelve years later, and after years in foster care, Faith has become a success on her own, and she's back in the little town of Prescott, Louisiana. She knows her mom left town on her own and not with Gray's dad and no one's heard from him in all this time. Something's not right and she wants answers.

Faith is a classy, elegant version of her mom. Gray's tall, dark and, of course, handsome, with long black hair and a diamond stud earring and hot for Faith, only being hot for Faith isn't good for his Ice Queen mother and Off-Balance sister, once again he needs her out of town for good to keep the peace at home. Only he wants her close enough to scratch his itch and she's not interested if she's got to leave town to have him.

There are so many reasons why this book shouldn't work. Gray is a Howard Neanderthal and a bully to boot. Yet, I love him, Linda Howard does such a great job developing his character, you completely understand his motivation and behavior. Faith is smart enough to walk away and never come back, she doesn't need him or that podunk town, but she's back and you completely understand her motivation and behavior too.

After the sex scene in the woods, you wonder what the heck were both of them thinking, why was she there in the first place and if you could kick him in the ass, you would. And, of course, the sex scene in the court house bathroom is what legends are made of, ranks right up with the scene on the stairs in Son of the Morning.

And, when Gray realizes it's more than just lust, he tells the Ice Queen mom, deal with or get out, my kind of man.

I love this book and I bet I still love it after the next 50 reads too.

Have a good one and happy reading.

Tuesday, May 16

Back to books... and a question...

You know there's a problem when it takes 2 weeks to finish a book. I had the hardest time getting into Elizabeth Thornton's The Bachelor Trap. This is going to sound weird, but there is a vagueness about the opening of this book that just left me completely uninterested. I had to reread the first 25 pages 3 times before it made sense, maybe I was preoccupied, but still, it didn't catch my attention at all. It took at least 150 pages for me to warm up to the h/h and to get remotely interested in the mystery, and I knew the "villian" as soon as the character was introduced. To be honest, I assumed it was an Avon book as it seemed rather interchangeable with most of their Regency period books. There's a pretty good review over on RT, the book wasn't horrible, just boring.

Extreme Exposure has an interesting backdrop--a newspaper. The heroine is a reporter and the hero is a Colorado State Senator. Very Erin Brockovitch (did I spell that right?) in style. I enjoyed the mystery and story, but I had issues with the heroines risk taking considering she's a single mom, with no support from the childs father. I loved the inner workings of a news room. My brother is an editor, it's a thankless job, long, long hours.

Dream Man still works for me. It's been a few years since I've read it cover to cover, though I did skip the scenes detailing why Marlie lost her abilities, I can't handle reading about a child being abused and murdered. Dane is a neanderthal and I still love him. The villian is evil. I wonder if I can use this one for Angies TBR challenge??

Pulled this from AAR's At The Back Fence message board in reference to why erotic romance and "Blaze" authors don't get respect:

It's not about the sex in the books, it's about the sex being the books, and in the eyes of said peers the sex replacing the romance. In erotic romance, the romantic conflict is solved through a sexual relationship, and many romance authors still cannot accept that the genre has come to that.

True or False?

Gone for a couple of days, and all hell continues...

It just took me two hours to work through my sidebar's "Blog Hopping" section. While sitting in the car yesterday, waiting to pick Junior up from school, I wrote an entire blog post that I planned to type in yesterday afternoon. Never got to it. So, I decided I really needed to see what was going on in romance blog land.

Holy Crap, it seems like things went from bad to down right ugly--LOL.

Forget what I was going to write, I'm just passing on news from different sites...

MJD decided to enter the PC Cast fray over on Smart Bitches. A day late and a dollar short, she should have left well enough alone.

There are links and comments in several different places regarding the DOS "Scandal" over on AAR,you'll have to find the actual message board yourself. If you've been under a rock like I have for the past few days it grew into a huge mess, with Miss Ashworth refusing to come back to the boards. I actually don't blame her.

I've come to the conclusion that if you're reading any book with a highlighter or red correction pen, you're not reading for pleasure. Perhaps real reviewers do this, but since I'm not really a reviewer, just a commenter on what I read, I don't do this. That was grammatically incorrect, sorry. My grammar sucks, it comes from writing from a conversational view point, not a reading one. I'm not likely to pick apart someone else's grammar, but I can find some glaring errors, misspellings and typos. Maybe I'm wrong, but once an author has submitted a book, isn't it the editorial staffs responsibility to 1. Make sure it reads cohesively, 2. Correct spelling and typo mistakes. I'm more likely to blame the publisher than the author for these mistakes.

When it comes to cheesy dialogue, bad character developement and poor plotting, now, that I will blame on the author.

Bad books happen to good authors, they need to remember a bad review is about the book not the author. But, I do think that the thread over on AAR went way to far.

Cranky does an excellent job, commentating on some of this, as does Dear Author and Kristie and several others.

JMC left me laughing with her reference to "The Shrub".

Keishon's looking for secret favorites.

Maili's got company coming and is looking for favorite love songs.

Mary Stella made me cry with the poem she wrote for "Mom", it's very sweet.

Karen is visiting "At The Back Fence".

Fiona's defending Johanna Lindsey.

Thanks to all for keeping me very entertained while I should have been cleaning. I needed the pick me up--the SILFH is pregnant again and the last pregnancy drove her and the rest of the family over the edge. This isn't going to be pretty, maybe it will swing her back towards normal instead of completely insane. A new baby in the family is good news, even if the mother's a little crazy.

Have a great day and happy reading.

Saturday, May 13

Drive By Blogging and Happy Mother's Day

Once again it's the weekend and we're busy doing the family thing. Which is probably a good thing because to quote my son, "I got NOTHIN!!" After all that ARC stuff, my brain has seized and I'm left kind of empty headed.

Just in case I don't get on tomorrow morning, I want to wish all the Mom's out there...

Happy Mother's Day!!!!!

Hopefully everyone has exciting plans. We're going to dinner with my side of the family tonight, it's also a birthday dinner for my sister. Tomorrow my husband gets to barbeque at his parents for his side. He does the cooking to avoid riots between my MIL and FIL, for some reason they make each other crazy when it comes to cooking outside.

I did finish 2 books in the last few days. Elizabeth Thorton's The Bachelor Trap which was okay, and Extreme Exposure by Pamela Clare which was good, but not great.

Got to go, Junior's in the shower and the last thing I need is a flooded bathroom.

Have a great weekend and happy reading.


Thursday, May 11

In Defense of Rabid Fangirls...

Can anyone believe I not only thought those words but also then typed them?

I've been following the bruhaha discussion over on SB about the selling of ARCs.

I'll start by saying I don't think ARCs should be sold on Ebay, since I'm not a lawyer I can't say whether or not it's even legal. But, if we go with the concept that it's not illegal but it's not very nice, then we need to look at who is actually buying them. It's not me, it's not the average reader or even the average fangirl, as I am a fangirl of many authors. The average fangirl wishes an ARC would some how fall into her lap, the Rabid Fangirl actively searches them out.

One of the comments closed with this line:

Only a great fool or a great fan would buy an ARC.

Personally, I can't imagine being so fanatical that I would pay large sums of money for a book that will:
  1. be availabe at the normal cover price within a few months.
  2. be available at UBS for half the cover price in a month after that.

I've been under the impression that authors love their fangirls. Perhaps only a "great" fan would be willing to pay extra for immediate satisfaction. These readers are so rabid they can't even wait for the release date. These are the very same readers that will recommend the book to every friend and fellow reader they come across and will defend your books with every ounce of their being.

And then some authors get all pissy with them for "lurving" them too much.

Maybe we need to start a new self help group RFGA... Rabid FanGirl Annonymous to help all these fans realize that they have stolen a handful of dollars from the very authors they adore and love.

Okay, I'm done being sarcastic, please note I'm pointing this out as sometimes those of us without sense of humors don't fully grasp this--yes, this is also sarcastic.

Now, I really am done, but I will go on to tell a tale that shows a little goodwill goes a long way.

I've mentioned before that I have a friend who owns a UBS, she also sells a nice selection of new books each month, most of which are romance and she will special order any book you're looking for and give you a discount similar to the big chain booksellers.

Several years ago she went to her first RT Convention, I think it was the one in Toronto, and she met one of her FAVORITE authors, who ripped into her for selling used books. Didn't she realize she was stealing from hard working authors, blah, blah, blah on she went. My friend was devestated.

Well, guess what this bookseller refuses to stock said author's new books. She stocks her used books and when asked if she'd recommend the author all she now says is "I don't read her, but many people do."

This author never realized my friend would have hand sold her new or used books to anyone who was even remotely interested.

It seems to me authors need to remember that a little goodwill goes a long way and it's sometimes better to bite your tongue than it is to alienate a reader.

Readers = customers and haven't we heard over and over that "The customer is always right." Even when they're wrong, they're right because ultimately they decide whether or not to buy your product.

Just my two cents, this was a little long, so maybe it's worth more than two cents, or maybe it's worth nothing at all--LOL

Have a good one and happy reading.

Wednesday, May 10

Out of sorts...

I was going to post that The Bachelor Trap has thrown me back into my reading rut, I've been trying to read it for a week now and have been picking up other things in between. But, I'm realizing I'm out of sorts in general and the fact that TBT is rather boring has nothing really to do with it.

My allergies are making me very cranky. No gardening can get done until I can be outside without having an attack. My house needs cleaning, but it seems like I'm constantly running errands.

May is a horrible month for us, in addition to Mother's Day, we have 5 birthday and 5 anniversary, every one needs cards and at least a small gift. My son's school has parties for all the "summer babies" in May, and of course, Junior's birthday is in August so I have to add a school birthday party into the mix. And, we have a Chuck E. Cheese party to go to next week, lord, I hate that mouse.

And, in the middle of all this I decide I need to go back to work part-time. I've an interview tomorrow to do data entry for a local supermarket. I've already told them I'm only willing to work at night, during the week and wont work weekends, and they still want me to come in. We start paying next year's school tuition in July and that will leave the finances kind of stretched to the limit. This doesn't really bother me, but it completely stresses out my hubby. And, we all know, if the hubby's stressed, we're stressed. At this point, all I want is a job, not a career. After Junior starts school full time I have an idea for a small business that I can run from home and work around his schedule.

The allergies have settled down enough that I think I can go out and do some gardening.

Have a good one, and happy reading.

Tara (aka cranky and out of sorts, with nothing to read)

Tuesday, May 9

Last months DNFs are just about finished...

I've gone back and finished just about everything I started, but didn't finish last month.

My DNF from last month:

  1. Moon's Web--Adam & Camp--Not Worth My Time
  2. Let It Be Love--Victoria Alexander--Okay
  3. The Outrageous Debutante--Anne O'Brien--Okay
  4. Puritan Bride--Anne O'Brien--Okay
  5. Deep Freeze--Lisa Jackson--Saving for this months TBR Challenge
  6. Lola Carlyle Reveals All--Rachel Gibson--Okay
  7. The Burning--Susan Squire--Good
  8. Playing For Keeps--Karen Templton--Okay
  9. Lord of Sin--Madeline Hunter--Okay
  10. His Wicked Kiss--Gaelen Foley--Good

Quick little reviews of each:

  1. Moon's Web--Adam & Camp--I'm picky when it comes to paranormals, and this book didn't work for me, I found myself skimming most of it.
  2. Let It Be Love--Victoria Alexander--very interchangeable with much of the Regency period romances out there, didn't stand out.
  3. The Outrageous Debutante--Anne O'Brien--I like a nice mix of dialogue to description, we spent way to much time hearing what was in the character's heads rather than what came out of their mouths.
  4. Puritan Bride--Anne O'Brien--See The Outrageous Debutante
  5. Deep Freeze--Lisa Jackson--still reading
  6. Lola Carlyle Reveals All--Rachel Gibson--I expect better from Gibson books, which is probably unfair, but this just wasn't as good as most.
  7. The Burning--Susan Squire--This for me was two different books, that's probably why, I thought it was good, the first half was probably a C-/D+, way too many flashbacks of the hero, being sexually trained to control his power, only the sexual training seemed more like sexual torture. The second part of the was closer to a B+, faster moving and more interesting. The heroine comes into her own and becomes stronger as the second half of the book progresses. If I had finished when I started it, instead of waiting a month to read the second half, I probably wouldn't have liked it as much as memories of the first part would have overshadowed the rest of the book.
  8. Playing For Keeps--Karen Templton--I normally like sports hero books, but this was just okay, the hero is angry about his childhood, through most of the book, his mother turns out to be a reformed alcoholic who abandoned him and went on to recover and have another family never including him--an ugly situation not really resolved.
  9. Lord of Sin--Madeline Hunter--doesn't compare to Lady of Sin or her medievals.
  10. His Wicked Kiss--Gaelen Foley--click on review

That's it for now, I'll be updating my sidebar with all this and making a few other changes to the template.

Have a great day, and happy reading.


Monday, May 8

Crazy Day

Not a lot of time this morning. We've got a busy day... School, Mother's Day shopping, hair appointment, food shopping...

Before I go, I lifted this from Sam

You Are 72% Open Minded

You are a very open minded person, but you're also well grounded.
Tolerant and flexible, you appreciate most lifestyles and viewpoints.
But you also know where you stand firm, and you can draw that line.
You're open to considering every possibility - but in the end, you stand true to yourself.

I'm somewhat relieved my brains aren't falling out like Sam :P But, to be honest, I hope this is rather accurate.

Have a good one, and happy reading.


Saturday, May 6

Just a quick post to say Susan Squires' The Burning turned out to be a much better book than I had expected.

Originally I had read about half the book, and was really put off by the so many flashbacks, so when I picked it back up this morning I didn't expect much. Ah, of course, I put it down right before it got really very good. If I have time to write a review in the next couple of days I will.

Have a great weekend, and happy reading.


Friday, May 5

His Wicked Kiss by Gaelen Foley

Over the next few days I'm going to try and finish some of the books I started last month, but didn't finish. The first book I picked up was Gaelen Foley's His Wicked Kiss.

This book should have been a keeper. It starts in the tropical forrest of Venezuela, great setting, Eden is dreaming of a London season and confronts her Doctor/scientist/adventurer father about returning to London as he's promised. Dad's hiding them away from the evils of society and has no plans to return and wants her to marry his assistant Connor, a painfully shy Australian, who turns out to be a complete psycho. Jack's "shipping" and other interests have brought him to Venezuela.

When her father refuses to return to England, Eden decides to stow away on Jack's ship, figuring her father would follow, which of course he does There starts an interesting and romantic trip back to England. Basically, they fall in love and marry aboard ship.

The book starts to fall apart when they reach Jack's estate in Ireland. He's decided to leave Eden there, rather than take her London. He's somewhat like her father, successful, but running away from his past and hates Society. They fight, he capitulates and she doesn't trust or forgive him. This little disagreement goes on from page 285-398, one hundred pages + of wasted space. Jack goes from strong hero to a neurotic, Eden becomes a superficial TSTL heroine. The only good part of this section--Jack reconciles with his family.

All ends well, without those pages it probably would have been a keeper.

Have a good one, and happy reading.


Thursday, May 4

All over the place

My allergies are leaving me rather fuzzy headed, so don't be shocked if this post goes in several directions.

Yesterday, I ran into the UBS looking for Elizabeth Thornton's The Marriage Trap, it the first in the series and I figured I probably should start with that, but as soon I walked in the door, what I wanted went out of my head and I picked up:
  1. The new Romantic Times with Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dark Side of the Moon on the cover. I don't read Kenyon, hopefully I'll find something good.
  2. Stobie Piel's Prince of Ice, I have no idea why I bought this book, I was thinking about picking up something used by her, since I've never read her, but they only had westerns and I wasn't in the mood for a western.
  3. Emma Holly's The Top of Her Game, I've been looking at this one for the last several visits and decided it was time to get it.
  4. A beautiful birthday card for my SILFH, I'm tempted to save it for my sister, her birthday is later this month, and get something else for the darling SIL.

I was about to close this post because I couldn't remember what else I wanted to say, but I sat for a minute and it's come back to me.

Dear Author has become one of my favorite review sites, even if I don't post, I read all their very clever reviews. I've noticed that authors are commenting about their reviews and I'm curious how readers/reviewers feel about this? Especially when the review is less than favorable.

I'm picking this one up from Amanda, who picked it up from Lindy on one of the RT message boards:

"I don't write romances, where there is nothing more than the man and woman getting together and then being torn apart and the rest of the book is about their getting back together. My books are too complex for romance readers.."

At first I was insulted, then I thought it was funny and then I thought it was rather sad. Amanda has a link to her website, and it doesn't seem like she's had anything published in 6 or 7 years. I have no idea if the quote is accurate, but if it is, are romance reader really perceived as this stupid?

That's all I can think about right now. I've got 10 loads of clean folded laundry to put away and they're calling to me.

Have a good one and happy reading.


Tuesday, May 2

Rude People

For some reason rude people leave me speechless, but nothing leaves me speechless for long...

Mary Stella left an interesting comment on today's RTB post:

I had a person walk up to my table at a booksigning and ask about my books. I told her they were romances. She sneered, threw the book on the table and said, “I don’t read trash.” I smiled and answered, “Good. I don’t write trash.” It was so much fun to watch her stunned expression while she processed the response and what she should do next.

I'm taking "obnoxious and toad" off my recent list of nicknames, this woman really is an obnoxious toad. Mary's comeback was perfect, of course, if that had been me, I probably wouldn't have thought of it until the woman had moved on.

Recently, I was in visiting the local UBS/Indie bookseller. She always has a nice selection of new romances and will special order anything, and she even offers a discount. While I'm wander through the used book shelves this woman comes in gushing about the new book she bought at Wal*Mart. I'm cringing in the A-D aisle, all I could think was how clueless this woman was being. Don't get me wrong, I don't have a problem with buying books in Wal*Mart or any other store, heck I buy books where ever and whenever the urge strikes, but don't boast about it to a bookseller with the very same book for sale.

When I owned my own shop, I had a man stand in the middle of the customer jammed store and complain about the price of my one of a kind, hand-made bird houses, they ranged from $15 - $25 each, outrageously expensive ***can you see me rolling my eyes?*** He was so loud and rude he was making the other customers uncomfortable, going on and on about how they couldn't cost $5 to make. Finally, I'd had enough, I told him if he could make them for $5 each, I'd buy them for him. He gave me a dirty look and told his wife he'd wait outside.

I should have simply ignored him, but it felt good not to.

Snarky, Smug, Sarcastic, Obnoxious, Toad

I've come up with more nicknames for myself.

In a way, I live in my own little world. And, to be honest, I like it that way. I don't hide the covers of my books--I read romance, you don't like that? That's your problem, it shows your narrowmindedness (if this isn't a word, it should be) not mine.

Why do we crave validation? Not only in the reading of romance but what authors we read or choose not to read? I understand why we do it with books and authors we love, it makes us feel good when other people read what we've loved and it give us something in common, a bond that we can talk about enthusiastically. Rabid fangirls have a tendency to take this to the extreme, and as long as it doesn't effect me and what I read, I shouldn't care.

I realized this morning I take perverse pleasure in seeing someone agree with me when it comes to authors I don't like, especially authors with rabid fangirl followings. I guess this is the snarky, smug, sarcastic, obnoxious toad in me. It's a bit of a relief that I'm admitting this, kind of like going to confession. I've become rabid anti-fangirl, who likes to poke fun at these readers and authors. This is not nice behavior and I need to work on this in the future, well, maybe I'll think about working on it--LOL, no really I need to work on this.

Authors and readers want more respect and yet don't we validate who they are, what they write and what we read by the sheer volume of sales out there? I've seen the RWA numbers they're darned good. I'm sure if you ask horror, mystery, fantasy... authors and readers about respect, they're not happy either. None of this matters. Those that look down their superior noses at us are the clueless ones, not us.

Read what you like, even if it's trashy romance novels. I for one love a good trashy romance. Because if I really thought it was trash, I wouldn't be reading it.

Have a good one, and happy reading.


I Hate Spring

I was going to call this post "Hi, my name is cranky." But, since I named myself an idiot yesterday, I thought that might get confusing.

Do you see these trees?? These trees and every other friggin' tree that is emitting pollen into the air, are killing me.

Before I got pregnant and during my pregnancy I went for allergy shots, and this helped tremendously, but this year the pollen is just ruining my life. Am I being dramatic enough--LOL. My eyes are constantly burning and itchy, my nose is now running constantly and my sinuses feel like they're going to explode. Nothing I've taken helps, prescription or over the counter.

Okay, I'm done whining about that, on to something else.

I woke up to a voice mail this morning:

"Tara, it's "M", bring "Junior" to the park today, It's "K's" birthday. I've sent you guys an invitations for his Chucky Cheese Party, but that's not for a few weeks. I'm getting Pizza, "J" & "C" are coming..." and on it went.

  1. The park is going to kill me (see above)
  2. K is a little monster and a bully with absolutely no discipline
  3. Chucky Cheese birthday parties are a nightmare

The park is also infested with wood ticks. After finding a tick in his hair over the weekend, I took Junior for a buzz cut yesterday, he looks like a little Marine. Of course, my husband complained it was too short, that was until I told him he could comb through his hair every night looking for ticks. And, since my husband had Lyme Disease a few years ago, you'd think the man would be a little more concerned about ticks.

All right, I'm done whining and complaining for today.

Have a good one and happy reading.


Monday, May 1

Kristie's right

- - - - - > = KEEPER


Repeat after me "Tara is an idiot."

Today was "Show and Tell" at school today, and of course, we forgot to bring something. So I run out to the car and the only thing I've got is a broken air rocket. Well, I run it into school, tell them it's broken, but he can "tell" them how it works rather than "show".

Well, it seems there was a little excitement during class, apparently it wasn't broken, my son is "showing" how it works, pumps it up and pushes the button--WHAM it hits the light on the ceiling then comes back down and hits his best friend in the head. Nobody was hurt--thank God.

I'm blaming my husband, he swore darned thing was broken. In fact, I'd emailed the company to complain about the thing and they sent us another one that we've never used.

Tara, the idiot