Dec 30, 2010

Pizza Here I Come



I am not quite sure why it is so tiring to pay bills but it sure is.  Perhaps it is because I can just see the money hemorrhaging away.  So it is only appropriate to ensure just a little more bleeding with Pizza Hut.

I sure hope that everyone has a great day and a safe New Year's Eve!
Dec 28, 2010

MIA




I hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday! 

Ours was pretty quiet even though we had the kiddling with us.  I didn't get around to doing all the decorating that  I was originally planning.  I just decided that I would rather have the money to spend while he was here instead of spending it on decorations that will probably only be used this one time.

I have been really impressed with Logan.  I was expecting a self absorbed brat which is what his mother described.  Instead I found a quiet kid that tries to be helpful.  He fixed dinner last night (under my supervision) and he was so proud of himself.   I really think that a lot of the problem at his home is the fact that his mother has always spoiled him rotten and is now demanding respect when she doesn't even respect herself.

My hubby has decided that I am becoming a guy.  He introduced me to a game called DragonAge and I admit I am hooked.  What a great way to relax.  My only problem is that I let other things go like updating my blog and answering emails. 

Well anyways, I am not dead just in another realm 

Dec 20, 2010

Review: Desperate Choices

When psychic Theresa Crawford's former beau walks into her New Orleans New Age shop, she senses trouble. Big trouble. Max Lamoreaux hasn't come to discuss their relationship-the private investigator is on a case, and he needs Theresa's help.

Max's godson is missing. The police have declared Tommy a runaway, but Max's gut tells him otherwise. While he's highly skeptical of Theresa's abilities, her visions provide the only clue as to who's taken Tommy. The longer Max works with Theresa, the harder it is to resist his desire for the sexy woman.


But Theresa harbors her own dark secrets from her past. Secrets that broke them up before-and could drive them apart again, unless Theresa can learn to trust Max with everything... 


DESPERATE CHOICES by Kathy Ivan hits on all the right cylinders.  The characters of Max, and Theresa just hit all the right notes.  And Ms. Ivan has definitely done her research on pyschics.  And Remy, Max's brother and Theresa's best friend, is just mouthwatering.  I am really hoping that he gets his own book.


I very much enjoyed the book but I feel obliged to point out it is really light on suspense.  So if you are looking for a book that has you sitting on the edge of your seat, I would pass on this one.  However if you are looking for a book that has a really hot romance with multidimensional characters I would check it out.


I rate this book a 3.4.

  I did receive this book from NetGallery in exchange for the review.  No money exchanged hands and all opinions are my own.
Dec 18, 2010

One World One Heart 2011

 

I have been telling myself for the last couple years that I have to become involved in the One World One Heart blog crawl and the one in 2011 will be the last one.  So I am going to jump in.  For more info about it, click on the picture and be sure to spread the word
Dec 16, 2010

Book Review: The Spurned Viscountess

 

Cursed with the sight and rumors of witchcraft, Rosalind's only chance at an ordinary life is marriage to Lucien, Viscount Hastings. She doesn't expect love, only security and children of her own. Determined to go through with the wedding, she allows nothing she encounters at the gloomy Castle St. Clare to dissuade her. 

Recently returned from the Continent, Lucien has no time for the English mouse his family has arranged for him to marry-not when he's plotting to avenge the murder of his beloved Francesca. He has no intention of bedding Rosalind, not even to sire an heir. 

Though spurned by her bridegroom, Rosalind turns to him for protection when she is plagued by a series of mysterious accidents and haunted by terrifying visions. Forced to keep Rosalind close-and tempted into passionate kisses-Lucien soon finds himself in grave danger of falling in love with his own wife... 

I love the romantic suspense genre and there are sometimes when I find myself craving a historical romance.  And when I find one that blends both in such a delightful fashion as Ms. Munro's The Spurned Viscountess, it is a definite bonus. 

I really enjoyed Rosalind's character.  Physically tiny, she more then makes up for it in heart. And when she makes up her mind, there is no changing it.  Lucien comes across as harsh but he is protecting myself from more pain.   If I had gone thru the same things as he had, I would be harsh and standoffish too.

I definitely recommend this book to anyone that enjoys romantic suspense.  The  identity of the villain comes as a total surprise. 

I rate this book a 3.8/5.
Dec 15, 2010

Playing Santa


We don't usually do a lot for the holidays around here.  This year of course will be different with a teenage jock in place.  Should be interesting though.

One thing that I do tend to do is play Secret Santa with one of my online groups.  This one in particular is for MiniPin owners.  We have an Insane Elf that matches us up and we send goodies to either the dog or the owner.  We then have a chat where we all open up our gifts.  Lots of fun!

This year I am also participating in a Christmas Bead Swap.  This is the first time that I have done this one and I have all the beads picked out that I am sending out.  I just need to get them wrapped and on their way.  I am going to be busy this next Wednesday at the Post Office.

Do you join in on any of the Christmas/Yule fun with your online buddies?
Dec 13, 2010

Important Things

It's times like last night that really makes one consider what is important.  I was happily sitting in my recliner last night playing at my computer.  I had put a homemade steak pot pie in the oven to cook and Saje was working one of his rare mid-shifts and scheduled to be off at 8:30.  I was just relaxed, waiting for the beeper to tell me dinner was done and looking forward to spending some time with the husband before I went to bed.

Then about 8 I started getting chest pains on the right side that were also hitting in the back at the same location.  My pulse also went way up and I had shortness of breath.  I have to admit to being an internet junkie as the first time I did was to search out the symptoms of a heart attack in women.  Having concluded that it might very well be one, I then got up and got dressed in street clothes clothes, and let my roommate know that dinner was ready.  Dave immediately knew something was wrong and asked what was up.  I told him and he wanted to take me to the hospital.

Now this is where the important things come in.  I refused as Saje would be home soon and I wanted him to go with me.  I was also worried about letting the dogs out as they won't go out for Dave.  So I loaded up my purse, took care of the dogs and waited for Saje.

So I concluded that the important things were Saje and my furkids.  I have enough life insurance so that they would be taken care off.  Saje would be able to just purchase the house outright to provide a place for him and the kids.  And he would be able to write.

Everything did work out in the end.  They concluded that I had non-cardiac chest pains and sent me home with pain pills.

It just shouldn't take something this dramatic to be able to narrow down what really is important to a person.  So please everyone kiss your kids, pet your pets and let the special someones in your lives know that you love them.

Brightest Blessings!



Dec 11, 2010

Book Review: Manifest

Krystal Bentley is an outsider at her new high school, having just moved to a small Connecticut town. Lately she's been hearing the voice of a teenage boy in her head, and he has become her friend and confidant. The only problem is, he's dead...
 
Ricky Watson was killed a year ago in the alley behind Krystal's new school. The rumor mill is filled with stories of Ricky and his untimely death. Unfortunately, as a ghost, Ricky is unable to investigate his own murder, so Ricky needs Krystal to find the truth and she needs someone to listen. When Krystal befriends Sasha and Jake, both outcasts at her high school, the threesome soon discover that they have more in common than their outsider status. Each has a unique paranormal ability and an unusual birthmark in the shape of an "M." Jake announces that the M must stand for misfits, and so the three form an unusual clique. They soon realize that solving Ricky's murder can help them understand the mystery behind their powers and may reveal whether there are others like them.

 I tend to enjoy a lot of the young adult books.  They sure have a come a long way from when I was that age.  In fact when I was that age, there wasn't even a genre such as young adult.  Kids these days don't know how good they really have it.  At least as far as book selection goes.

MANIFEST however wasn't one of  ones that I enjoyed.  It was readable, in fact it did keep drawing me back into the story.  However I found the pacing to be rather slow in fact so slow that I can easily see a young reader getting bored and never finishing the story.  And the issues with her mother, well I have seen that exact same plot device in too many other stories. 

I did enjoy the ending though.  It made persevering all worthwhile.  And I will admit to being curious about Krystal's friend's stories though I am not sure if I will pick up the sequels.

I rate this book a 2.5
.
I did receive this book from NetGallery in exchange for the review.  No money exchanged hands and all opinions are my own.

Dec 10, 2010

Warm up for Christmas

I just wanted to give everyone a heads up that I reviewed very nice paranormal romance over at Shaiha's Spicer Side.

Winter Wishes
Dec 9, 2010

Shaking things up

I have decided to change things about on my other blog.  You can read all about it here,

http://shaihasbooks.blogspot.com/2010/12/whats-new.html

Now if only I could find some way to have my blog posts announced on FB and twitter like I do with this blog.  Hootsuite might say that it will support 2 RSS feeds but it lies.  It keeps trying to get me to upgrade. 

Why is it...

that teenage jocks seem to have no respect for the opposite sex?

that the holidays are during the worst time of the year as far as traveling goes?

that we lump the holidays together just when the disposable income goes down due to the cost of the utilities going up?

that we work our retirement years the other way around?  Older worker are more dependable and well a lot of fun vacations require a younger body.

that the body's warranty gives out at 49?

that it is so hard to get the medical and pharmaceutical communities to pay as much attention to women's issues as they do to men's?  After all we are the ones that will go to the doctor.

that I can't seem to type this morning?
Dec 6, 2010

Review: His Christmas Pleasure

When her father threatens to marry Abigail Montross to a man twice her age (and with 13 children!), she elopes instead with the irresistibly handsome Baron de Vasconia.  She knows he's London's most notorious, seductive playboy, but he vows to protect her...so, guarding her heart at all costs, she allows herself to be tempted into his bed. 

Andres believes he's merely entering a marriage of convenience with the charming and wealthy Abigail.  But the days -- and nights -- they spend together soon reform this rogue. He'll do anything to gain her love -- until old heartbreaks resurface when each lover discovers the other's dark secrets. 

The holidays tend to be hectic so a good book that will take me away is a necessity.  A well written historical romance is one that it guaranteed to do so.   And HIS CHRISTMAS PLEASURE certainly falls within that category.

Ms. Maxwell does a great job with taking the reader back to an earlier time without bogging the reader down without all the unimportant little details.  I tend to not really care who is wearing what and silly little things like that.  What she does immerse her reader in is a wonderful tale of two people who thought that they were just marrying to help each other out of various situations and instead discover that they are two parts of a whole. 

The characters are multidimensional (even the shallow Freddie) with fears, hopes and dreams.  The situations that they find themselves in are all to believable.  The pacing of the story is such that you just have to read just one more page and then just one more.  The writing itself is delicious. 

I would say that if you are going to only read one Christmas story this year, then pick up HIS CHRISTMAS PLEASURE.  It will make you believe in the happy ever afters.

I rate this book a 4.4.

So this is why they call it Monday....

I swear is something could go wrong than it did today.  No I can't say that.  The morning was going along great.  In fact I was even impressed by my sales as I usually have horrible Mondays but I was chugging right along.  And then it happened..

We had an internet outage in my area.  Usually not that big of an issue as I can always find other things to do.  But now that I am working from home I need the internet to be able to connect with the network, to get calls, well to do all sorts of things.  So I ended up rushing to go in and work at the office.

I guess that it wasn't that bad however half the stuff I needed was at home.  It was just one of days that you roll with the punches.  I am just glad that it over.
Dec 4, 2010

Book Review: Gambit

Captain Chae Beyon is a hustler, a mercenary pilot, a wounded woman who prefers her men to be easily thrown aside. 

Daned Traern is a first-caste Ladaian bound by tradition and DNA to protect his race. He's willing to align himself with the hot space captain if she'll transport him home in time to ensure the right candidate is crowned-and thus prevent a bloody war. 

Disguised as Chae's sex toy, Daned is erotically bound to her through living gold, alien tech designed to increase pleasure. When he frees himself, their passion only increases...but succumbing to temptation will bind them together-permanently. 

But there's more at stake than their needs. As Chae is dragged into a world of insane princes and sentient stones, hired killers hound them across the quadrant. 

And then, as only her lousy luck would have it, Chae must choose between the good of the galaxy and her own heart..

I am really starting to look forward to reading book by Carina Press.  They all tend to be top quality with very few problems with the editing.  GAMBIT is no exception.

I will admit that I didn't particularly care for Chae in the beginning of the book, or Daned either for that matter, but they very quickly grew on me.  I found myself cheering Chae along when things with right or holding my breath when her lousy luck made itself known.  Daned can be a real charmer when he lets himself be.  I also appreciated the fact that in GAMBIT, the choice to be tied to another person permanently is not made by an outside force or directive but instead is one that the parties involved have to weigh for themselves.

Of course choosing to be permanent does make for some really hot sex.  Ah a girl can only dream that it would work that way outside of fiction.  I really enjoyed the book and would love to see a sequel so that I can go back and visit with them both.  

I rate this book a 3.5 out of a 5.
Dec 2, 2010

Christmas Changes



Since we don't normally have kids here during the holiday, my husband and I just don't celebrate Christmas.  We have a tradition of going out to the movies that that is it.  Well this year everything is going to be slightly off-kilter as we will have my 13 year old stepson with us.  So I need to find a little tree.  He is going to Costa Rica next year with school so we got him some binoculars for his present. 

Another change this year is that we will is that we will be getting a christmas present for each other.  It is time to get a flat screen television for the house.  Hubby has been investigating which TV to get while I have been checking out flat screen TV stands.  I mean seriously if we are going to spend that much on a television I want a nice stand to put it on.

I am happy to say that there are some really nice ones out there especially the ones thru CSN Stores.  And I have to admit that I really love their search features.  It makes it so easy to find just what you are looking for.  So any suggestions on what to pick?  I do know that it want it to be wood and preferably a cherry tone.

Brightest Blessings!
Dec 1, 2010

Review: Spy Glass by Maria V. Snyder

An undercover mission leads to danger, adventure and an impossible choice.

After siphoning her own blood magic in the showdown at Hubal, Opal Cowan has lost her powers. She can no longer create glass magic. More, she's immune to the effects of magic. Opal is now an outsider looking in, spying through the glass on those with the powers she once had, powers that make a difference in the world. Until spying through the glass becomes her new power. Suddenly, the beautiful pieces she makes flash in the presence of magic. And then she discovers that someone has stolen some of her blood - and that finding it might let her regain her powers. Or know it could be they are lost forever. 


To me a mark of a great book is one where I totally lose time while I read it.  One where I am able to completely suspend disbelief and just enjoy.  Ms. Snyder's SPY GLASS is just such a book.  It is actually the third book in her Glass series but it stands very well on its own.  There are mentions of things that happen in the prior books but they are so well explained that I didn't feel as though I was missing out on anything.  That being said, I have already put her back list in my TBR file because I just plain enjoyed the book that much.  


I think that Ms. Snyder's true strength lies with her characters.  Opal was very easy to like even though there were times when I want to slap her across the back of her head.  All of her characters, even the secondary ones, are written very strongly.

If I had any issue with the book itself, it was the fact that there were several editing issues throughout the book.  Hopefully this issue is resolved in the print copy.

I rate this book a 4.3. 

There is just something wrong

When I end up being more exhausted on a day off then one where I work 10 hours.  Of course, I am just now finally sitting down at my computer today.  With a cup of excellent oolong, 2010 Dong Ding from American Tea Room, that was sent to me by a friend and fellow tea reviewer.  So the day is starting to look brighter even though the sun has gone down.

I finally got trained to work at home yesterday at work.  And let me tell you that packing up to bring everything home was an adventure.  I ended up with 4 large boxes.  I am not quite sure how I managed to fit it all in one small cubicle at work.  So this morning, I got up bright and early to set up the computer system.  It was a good thing that I did since I forgot a power cord at work.  So another thing on my list was to stop by work and pick that up.

Next, I got cleaned up and went to get my massage.  Yes time that I got to relax and kinda enjoy.  Last weeks snow caused my massage to get canceled and I was all knotted up.  Especially in my right calve.   Dorothy wasn't able to get it all worked out but it is much better.  Now if only I could do something about my right elbow.   I am still not able to work with wire and I have promised someone a pair of earrings.  Hopefully when I get a new doc in 2011 I can get something done about it.

I did pick up the power cord from work and then stopped by Lowes to get a few things from my new office.  It is shaping up.  Not perfect yet but good enough to work in tomorrow.

Wow looking over this post it looks like I am just whining but I not really.  I am so looking forward to working from home and typing up a review for a book that I really loved.  I just hope that everyone else's hump day went better then mine.

Brightest Blessings!