Thursday, August 31, 2006

I got my mojo back

So how's everyone doing? as you've probably noticed, it's going well on my reading :) I've bought more books and I've been reading them :) So here are 2 reviews.

Caroline's Journal by Katherine Stone: 4/5

What can I say about this one? It was a nice story. What I liked the most was the change of pace from the other books. The story was nice and touching and it was slow, which for this one was good.

I'm putting up the book synopsis, because surprisingly, it's pretty close to the story:
Caroline, a successful architect, is finally and joyfully pregnant. She keeps a journal throughout her pregnancy, conveying her feelings and plans, and is also reestablishing her relationship with her much younger sister, Meg. Meanwhile, her husband is prosecuting a murder case involving a pregnant woman, and as a father-to-be he finds the case particularly distressing. When Caroline has feelings of foreboding, she chalks it up to her usual worrying. But at the start of her third trimester she is diagnosed with preeclampsia, and Caroline discovers that it will be a struggle to keep both her and her baby safe.
So it's pretty much Caroline's last possible pregnancy as she is 36 years old and she already miscarried 3 or 4 times. Jeffrey, her husband, has caught a case in which the father-to-be has killed his pregnant fiancée and he finds it difficult, not only because the victim was pregnant, but also because the murder occured almost at the same time as Caroline's miscarriage. Meanwhile, Caroline and Meg's relationship has suffered a lot after their parents' marriage. Meg has turned to drinking and Caroline thinks she did a poor job at providing a motherly figure to Meg; but both are trying hard to mend their relationship.

I really liked the story but somewhat, I felt cheated: the book wasn't long enough and I thought there was not enough detail. It was a nice change that the main characters were in love with each other, but I'd had like for Caroline to recount how she met Jeffrey and fell in love with him. I'd had like a bit more storyline too, like a bit more things happening. Aside from that, it's a classic Katherine Stone - you have relationships that need mending, conflicts, love and a medical condition. The characters were all nice, no TSTL heroine, no annoying characters. It is probably a bit weak compared to Pearl Moon, but it is a very nice relax read, a true Katherine Stone classic and it was much better than the Cinderella Hour which restore my confidence in Katherine Stone's books to come.

Foot Loose by Leanne Banks : 3.5/5

This book came very close to a 4, but there's just a tiny something missing.

Amelia just got dump by what was supposed to be the love of her life, William... She's been with him since elementary school, has made so much sacrifices for him, has live the way he liked and now, he has dumped her. Apparently, he outgrew her. How dare him? So, following advice from the shrink, Amelia has to discover herself, learn who she really is. In order to do so, she writes up list of things to do and try to do them.

For the past few years, Amelia has been working as a temp at Bellagio, designer shoes manufacturer and is loved by everyone. She's the temp that the cie will assign in every difficult situation and now, she's been assigned to LillianBellagio, one of the founder's widow, in Keys. There, she meets Jack O'Connell. Jack is a venture capitalist and the bastard son of Dario Bellagio, i.e. Lillian Bellagio's stepson. However, Lillian has long paid off Jack's mother and so, Jack never really had the opportunity to meet his father. Nonetheless, he'd like to be part of Bellagio, but on his terms and due to his abilities. That day has almost come as Bellagio needs money and Jack is happy to provide, only if he can becomes a board member. Anyway, Jack and Amelia meet in Keys where Jack helps Amelia to discover herself, gets some on Bellagio from her and become lovers. Of course, when she realized that Jack used her, she's not very happy and is reluctant to forgive him...

Anyway, this was a good book and I really enjoyed it. I liked Jack a lot and Amelia was a nice heroine too. The story went smoothly and was good. However, I wished we've seen a showdown between Amelia, Jack and Will... I mean, the author did reunite them, but nothing really happened. Also, I thought that the jail scene was unnecessary.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Review: Morrigan's Cross by Nora Roberts

Hello everyone, as you can see, I've been reading books and enjoying them :) My focus problem has gone away! *happy dance* So yesterday, since there was no tennis to watch, I read Morrigan's Cross by Nora Roberts which is one of my many, many new purchases ^^;

Morrigan's Cross by Nora Roberts: N/A

I wasn't sure how to grade this book and in the end, I decided to wait till the trilogy is completely out or at least, till the next volume is out to grade the book.

One thing that's always a constant with Nora Roberts is that her books are well-written and this one is no exception. However, I'm not too sure what my feelings are - there are parts I like and parts I don't.

Okay, so the story is something like: Hoyt MacCionaoith is a sorcerer in the 12th century and his twin brother, Cian, has been turned into a vampire. So Hoyt confronts Cian's sire, gorgeous Lilith, and managed to wound her and unfortunately for Hoyt, he killed Cian, or so he thinks. Anyhow, the goddess Morrigan appears to Hoyt and tells him that Lilith wants to take over the world - all worlds (past, present, future, alternative, parallel) and that only an army of 6, which comprises Hoyt, will be able to defeat her. The army of 6 consists of Hoyt, Cian, a warrior, a scholar, a witch and one of many forms. So Hoyt is sent to our time in New York City to recruit the members... first one being Cian.

Now Cian, also known as Cain, is almost 1000 years old, incredibly rich and lonely. Perhaps not lonely, but detached... because if he cares, he'll hurt. Anyway, Hoyt recruits Cian, Cian's friend King, and the witch and hop, they are on their way to Ireland... back to Hoyt's family house few century's ago and there, they'll find the others. So basically, there's some magic happening, some training (hand-to-hand and weapon) and some attacks and killing vampires.

Hmmm... It's not a bad first installment. However, I think that one of my complaint is how predictable it is... I mean, the pairings of characters is very easy to deduct (esp. with all the family ties going) and eventually, you know that they'll win and love will prevail :P I do complain that it is predictable; however, I will admit that Nora Roberts did put in some twists and those weren't bad... but you do know immediately when you read the book who's going to be important and who's not.

SPOILERS - highlight to read

Like King. King is Cian's friend and has been saved by Cian so that's why he's so loyal. At first, he is mistaken to be the warrior... however, while reading the book, all I could think is "I hope King is not the warrior because if he's really the warrior, I don't want to read his book" Sad, but yeah... that's life. Also, a major give-away that another character was going to be introduced was the fact that the numbers didn't add up: 4 males + 2 females doesn't = 3 romances ^^;


What else? Two more bads... 1) too much of Morrigan. I know it's fantasy so yeah, goddess is accepted... but Morrigan makes it too easy. She basically arranged everything... who, when and where. You already know where the final battle will take place... urgh. 2) The time traveling... it was a nice touch, but too much in my opinion. Basically, my problem is that this trilogy sounds a bit too much like the Key trilogy. You have the goddess and the old language and different world. Why couldn't she write contemporary paranormal, instead of always adding divinity?!? It's just starting to be a tad redundant.

So, what's the good? Characters... well not all of them. Moira-the scholar- annoys the hell out of me. Larkin - one of many forms- passes out as juvenile to me until Blair mentions how handsome he is. Hoyt is the leader, but he's a bit boring and gives too much orders... or perhaps is that it's seems he ignores the problem. However, Glenna - the witch - is quite entertaining. Cian- the vampire- is really cool... and Blair -the warrior- kicks butts. Another good? The inner conflicts and the relationships are well built.

Verdict: it's a good start for a trilogy... however, Nora Roberts will have to come up big with the next two books to amaze me, cos so far, it's a tad too typical. Also, there's not much world building, it's pretty much our times + vampires and some mystical entities, thus it doesn't sound like a "vampire" books... if the vampires were switches by demons, you'd get the same results. So for ppl who don't like vampires books but enjoy Nora Roberts, just go ahead...

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

August TBR challenge - I'm quite desperate

August TBR challenge was a non-romance.

why the heck did a sign up for this, since I'm an almost-romance-only reader?!?!

Okay... end of the month is in what? 2 more days? Yep... so here is my TBR challenge and I was quite desperate :P (do re-read counts? cos if not, i'm doomed as this one is a re-read...) So, I haven't really read any books that are not romance this month ^^; Angie did recommend to read fantasy or sci-fi and I thought, ah well I'll do that. But I didn't have time too... however, I did read a manga :D So instead of a novel, my TBR challenge is a manga - hope it counts/work

Title: Slam Dunk
Author: Takehiko Inoue
Year published: from 1993 - 1997 in Japan in the Weekly Jump. The original edition is 31 volumes long while the re-edition is 24 volumes long.

Why did you get this book? A friend lent me the series and I fell in love with it.

Do you like the cover? They are 31 covers, some are nicer than others, but I like them all. As the story progresses, the art also improves and so the covers are nicer-looking. The good thing tho is that all the covers have something to do with the story since it's the author who draws them. You don't go, huh? :P I'll post later some of my fav. covers.

Did you enjoy the book? Oh, immensely. It ranks as one of my fav. manga :) The story was good and most important in this case, believable. The art is attractive, the characters are well defined and they stay in characters :) You can't help but like it. The games are entertaining and you really want to know what happens next. It's really a good manga with a good storyline.

Was the author new to you and would you read something by this author again? The author was new to me... and I'd read if he did a sequel. He did draw some other mangas since Slam Dunk, but I didn't get the chance to read them yet. But I'll read this author again.

Are you keeping it or passing it on? I'm willing to buy 31 volumes... You bet I keep :)

Anything else? Well, there's been a rumor that the author might write a sequel once he's done with his current work. I really really really hope so :) Anyone who is a sport manga fan, you must read Slam Dunk if you hadn't yet.

French edition by Mangakana and English edition by ... I'm not sure, sorreh. (but scanslations are available)

Monday, August 28, 2006

Good day :D

Evening everyone :D

guess what?

If you've guessed that Nath just came back from the book store, congrats, you've guessed right :D All right, so I had a good day... I'm back at the lab and motivated enough to work, that's always good. It's US Open time, so I have tennis to watch and Justine Henin-Hardenne, my fav., won today. My lab tech gave me a 25$ gift certificate for HMV... and I gased at 99.4 cents/liter instead of over a dollar. However, best of all is that Chapters/Indigo are giving out gift cards of unknown amount (could be 5, 10, 25, 50, 100 or 1000$), so I got one today and I plan to get another one tomorrow :P

Onto another subject... I was reading Mailyn's blog not long ago and she said that she has a fetish for big, fat books :P So I was wondering what was everyone's fetish or habit when buying books, good or bad. Me, I have a syndrome. The "I want my books. NOW" syndrome. When books are concerned, I'm too impatient and I just can't wait. The moment I know the books are available in the book store, I'll do whatever possible to go buy it, even if it means detour or whatever. I could even buy 2 copies of the books if it meant I had it in my hands faster :P So, what about you guys?

By the way, if anyone's wondering, I got my hands on Morrigan Cross by Nora Roberts and Caroline's Journal by Katherine Stone. Oh, and I need some suggestions for my buy tomorrow. I thought Dreaming of You by Lisa Kleypas and... hmmm... can't remember, oups :P but if you have any suggestion, they're welcomed.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Top 100 and Top 25

So, I've been seeing the AAR's top 100 romances list a bit everywhere on blog land lately and I've been too lazy to do it, but since I'm done re-stacking my books (I've given up on the list, it was starting to be long and tedious :P)

TBR list
  1. Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase
  2. Flowers From the Storm by Laura Kinsale
  3. Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Crusie
  4. As You Desire by Connie Brockway
  5. Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie
  6. Dreaming of You by Lisa Kleypas
  7. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
  8. Over the Edge by Suzanne Brockmann
  9. All Through the Night by Connie Brockway
  10. Sea Swept by Nora Roberts
  11. It Had to be You by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
  12. A Summer to Remember by Mary Balogh
  13. Morning Glory by LaVyrle Spencer
  14. The Proposition by Judith Ivory
  15. A Kingdom of Dreams by Judith McNaught
  16. Ravished by Amanda Quick
  17. Frederica by Georgette Heyer
  18. Mrs. Drew Plays Her Hand by Carla Kelly
  19. MacKenzie's Mountain by Linda Howard
  20. Mr. Perfect by Linda Howard
  21. The Grand Sophy by Georgette Heyer
  22. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  23. The Bride by Julie Garwood
  24. Devil's Bride by Stephanie Laurens
  25. To Have and to Hold by Patricia Gaffney
  26. Born in Fire by Nora Roberts
  27. Winter Garden by Adele Ashworth
  28. Gone Too Far by Suzanne Brockmann
  29. The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn
  30. Saving Grace by Julie Garwood
  31. My Dearest Enemy by Connie Brockway
  32. In the Midnight Rain by Barbara Samuel
  33. The Windflower by Laura London
  34. Naked in Death by J.D. Robb
  35. Whitney, My Love by Judith McNaught
  36. Nobody's Baby but Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
  37. A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux
  38. Paradise by Judith McNaught
  39. The Shadow and the Star by Laura Kinsale
  40. Dream Man by Linda Howard
  41. Out of Control by Suzanne Brockmann
  42. Silk and Shadows by Mary Jo Putney
  43. See Jane Score by Rachel Gibson
  44. Shattered Rainbows by Mary Jo Putney
  45. Thunder and Roses by Mary Jo Putney
  46. The Duke and I by Julia Quinn
  47. Heart Throb by Suzanne Brockmann
  48. For My Lady's Heart by Laura Kinsale
  49. Honor's Splendor by Julie Garwood
  50. Lord Carew's Bride by Mary Balogh
  51. Untie my Heart by Judith Ivory
  52. Dream a Little Dream by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
  53. The Secret by Julie Garwood
  54. This is All I Ask by Lynn Kurland
  55. Slightly Dangerous by Mary Balogh
  56. One Perfect Rose by Mary Jo Putney
  57. To Love and to Cherish by Patricia Gaffney
  58. Kiss an Angel by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
  59. Heaven, Texas by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
  60. Venetia by Georgette Heyer
  61. Daughter of the Game by Tracy Grant
  62. The Prize by Julie Garwood
  63. Reforming Lord Ragsdale by Carla Kelly
  64. Prince Joe by Suzanne Brockmann
  65. The Notorious Rake by Mary Balogh
  66. Heartless by Mary Balogh
  67. Son of the Morning by Linda Howard
  68. Sleeping Beauty by Judith Ivory
  69. Where Dreams Begin by Lisa Kleypas
  70. The Devil's Cub by Georgette Heyer
  71. The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons
  72. The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegar
  73. With This Ring by Carla Kelly
  74. The Lion's Lady by Julie Garwood
  75. The Rake by Mary Jo Putney
  76. Fallen from Grace by Laura Leone
  77. Always to Remember by Lorraine Heath
  78. Castles by Julie Garwood
  79. One Good Turn by Carla Kelly
  80. Chesapeake Blue by Nora Roberts
  81. By Arrangement by Madeline Hunter
  82. Perfect by Judith McNaught
  83. My Darling Caroline by Adele Ashworth
  84. The Defiant Hero by Suzanne Brockmann
  85. The Unsung Hero by Suzanne Brockmann
  86. Guilty Pleasures by Laura Lee Guhrke
  87. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
  88. Kill and Tell by Linda Howard
  89. After the Night by Linda Howard
  90. More than a Mistress by Mary Balogh
  91. Born in Ice by Nora Roberts
  92. Miss Wonderful by Loretta Chase
  93. The Charm School by Susan Wiggs
  94. Scoundrel by Elizabeth Elliott
  95. How to Marry a Marquis by Julia Quinn
  96. Angel Rogue by Mary Jo Putney
  97. Trust Me by Jayne Ann Krentz
  98. Dancing on the Wind by Mary Jo Putney
  99. Once and Always by Judith McNaught
  100. This Heart of Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
So I read around 25% of the list... I guess not bad for a contemporary romance junkie :D Oh, and there's one more SEP I read in this list, but I have no idea which one, can't remember the title. Actually, scratch that, I just remembered... This Heart of Mine, thanks to the gals from Sanctuary's Finest :) Kevin Tucker being the male of the week :P However, I think that whoever compiled that list is a bit biaised.

So, now onto this

TOP 25 fav. of nath (in no order)

Pearl Moon by Katherine Stone
The Perfect Lie by Dinah McCall/Sharon Sala
Summer by the Sea by Susan Wiggs
Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Crusie
Getting Rid of Bradley by Jennifer Crusie
Through a Crimson Veil by Patti O'Shea
Industrical Magic by Kelley Armstrong
Stealing Shadows by Kay Hooper
Out of the Shadows by Kay Hooper
Touching Evil by Kay Hooper
Hunting Fear by Kay Hooper
Belonging to Taylor by Kay Hooper
Loving Jack by Nora Roberts
Honest Illusions by Nora Roberts
Sea Swept by Nora Roberts
Chesapeake Blue by Nora Roberts
Three Wishes by Barbara Delinski
Kiss of the Night by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Night Play by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Dragonlance trilogy by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman
Something Wonderful by Judith McNaught
Night Whispers by Judith McNaught
Now You See Her by Linda Howard
Shades of Twilight by Linda Howard
After the Night by Linda Howard

Yeah, I guess I'm biaised too :D As for the 13 books I hate which Mailyn started... i don't think I can do it... because of course, I don't keep those books... so I don't really remember them :P So I'll probably be back with another post tonight (I feel better, does it show :P)

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Katherine Stone and a recent read

I don't wanna go to work!!! someone, save me!

As if... :P anyway, the above is my feeling... I've been watching House M.D. Season 2 the whole week-end and I must say, it's really entertaining. I just enjoy House so much and I can't wait for the première and see what happens.

All right, onto what I wanted to say tonight... Katherine Stone.

Who here has read her books and what do you think? My first novel by Katherine Stone was Pearl Moon and I just loved it. LOVED IT. I think that it still ranks as one of my fav. book... and it'd be in my top 25. (Top 25 fav. is coming soon as well as what I've read and not read in the top 100) Her stories usually focus on relationships, some internal battle, and most of the time, they'll be a medical condition, so it kind of follow a recipe, but I can't help it and find it really touching :) Actually, most of the time I end up shedding some tears and my heart aches, but it's good. So I've just discovered that Caroline's Journal is out, her newest book. I usually don't keep tag on her coming book, because she writes one a year and her website isn't really interesting... It's strange tho, cos I'd swear her last book came out during winter... Anyway, I'm happy and can't wait to read this one. It sounds really, really interesting... here's the blurb:

Caroline, a successful architect, is finally and joyfully pregnant. She keeps a journal throughout her pregnancy, conveying her feelings and plans, and is also reestablishing her relationship with her much younger sister, Meg. Meanwhile, her husband is prosecuting a murder case involving a pregnant woman, and as a father-to-be he finds the case particularly distressing. When Caroline has feelings of foreboding, she chalks it up to her usual worrying. But at the start of her third trimester she is diagnosed with preeclampsia, and Caroline discovers that it will be a struggle to keep both her and her baby safe. Katherine Stone once again brings her readers a deeply emotional and very relevant story.

So, what do you think?

Queen by Sharon Sala: 3.75/5

Queen is the first book of a trilogy: Queen, Diamond and Lucky. So Queen, Diamond and Lucky Houston are the daughters of the town gambler who just died. Diamond has been recruited by a singer and gone with him to Nashville while Queen and Lucky sell the house and split the money. Both sisters leave their little town where nobody cares about them to realize their dreams and start a new life: Lucky heads for Las Vegas while Queen wants to go to California.

On her way to California, the bus breaks down and Queen embarks onto another bus, this one heading to Denver (or Detroit). At the bus station, Queen stumbles onto 3 boys: Donny (13), Will (10) and J.J. (7). The boys' father hasn't come home for the night, so Donny brought his brothers into town to talk to the Sheriff... the sheriff is concerned and calls Social services. Donny is sure that his father wouldn't abandon them overnight and something must have happened to him... however, Social services woman doesn't want to hear about it and tell them to follow her. Queen, for some unknown reasons, comes to the rescue of the kids and passes out as their aunt. She stays with the boys until their father, Cody Bonner, comes back. Although this was not the new life Queen wanted, Queen ended up staying as the Bonner's housekeeper to help Cody keeps custody of the boys and because she fell in love with the boys... and of course, their father.

Well I liked the book :) but I'm not sure about the 2 others... So the good: you had some building of relationship and some changes in the characters. Cody and Queen didn't jump into each other's arms right away, it actually took time before they admitted having feelings for each other and falling in bed together. I liked the kids, they were nice and protective and stuff. The story flowed quite smoothly and at the end, Cody's father-in-law stood up to his wife. So, what's the bad? Well, not much really... the only few things that bothered me: never knew if Cody really loved his wife and if yes,why? Then, it seems that Cody's best friend, Dennis, altho he knows there's no hope, is in luv with Queen. Last, why is the woman on the cover have brown hair when Queen is a red-headed? Even more funneh, why does the women on the next two covers have orange hair when they're supposed to be brunette and blond? Did someone read the stories before designing the covers?!?

Thursday, August 24, 2006


Hey girls (because I assume most of us are girls. Guys, sorreh)

So to answer to Ames most recent comment that I was supposed to post some recent reads... Sorreh. Haven't been feeling very well lately (tired, getting headaches, so un-motivated, backaches, etc.), that's why I haven't been updating. Also, there's the fact that for some reasons, I can't really focus on what I'm reading so I've been skimming through the books, which sucks. I guess my brain is too tired :( Hopefully, it'll go away soon. I'm trying to read The Comeback Kiss at the moment.

On the other hand, I've been hanging out with my books. I'm kind of resorting them and I'm making a list (yeah, a list... might take me a couple of days :P) I also wanted to cruise the net and see which books are coming in the next few months so I know what I want to get. I already have my lists of coming mangas :P

What about you girls? (sorreh guys again, if any.) What have you been up to?

ps - Ames, I'm doing science lab work. Right now, working with parasites and in two weeks, starting a job (screening compounds)

Monday, August 21, 2006

Boston and books

Hello ppl,

I went to Boston this week-end, to visit some family and I had a blast :D Best of all (well, not best best, because best best is seeing relatives that I haven't seen in 3 years, but pretty high in the list) is that I was able to go to Barnes and Nobles... a first :D So here are my new additions:

Ravyn's Flight by Patti O'Shea (youppi!!! now I have to cancel my amazon order.)
The Comeback Kiss by Lani Diane Rich
Queen, Diamond and Lucky by Sharon Sala (i.e. 3 different books)
Baby, Don't go by Susan Andersen
The Kept Woman by Susan Donovan
The Care and Feeding of Unmarried Men by Christie Ridgway
The Black Jewels trilogy by Anne Bishop

I have to say that I was quite impressed by the bookstore, because they had lots of books from the backlist of authors. I mean, at Indigo and Chapters, at least in Montreal, they usually have most recent books or those that they know are very good sellers. So the books such as Sharon Sala, The Comeback Kiss and others are not in store and I would have to order them. I've also seen Cherish by Catherine Anderson, which again, can't find in Montreal, and many more books. Once I finish cruising through the romance section, I think that my pile was of 18 books. I had to cut down from fear of my mother's pestering afterwards :P

So I'll be adding some recent reads sometime today :D


Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Skintight by Susan Andersen: some thoughts...

hello everyone,

yes, still at the lab... but at least, now I have a full stomach :D another 30min and I should be on my way home... yay: home. nay: 45min of driving. argh. I'm exhausted.

anyway, as I'm waiting again (yes, in science, you do 10 minutes of work and you have 30-45min of waiting), I thought I would post my first thoughts about Skintight:

- I actually like Treena and Jax. I mean, it's almost all the same characters as Just for Kicks and they are all quite likeable.

- the fact that they dance topless (they = Treena and Carly) doesn't bother me. it's work right? (and i've always been bad as picturing what i'm reading)

- Mack and Ellen's love story: hmmm... this one was meh. Actually, Mack seems a bit different from this book than in Just for Kicks. I guess it's because in this one, he lusts for Ellen as in the other, he has her. (again, I'm glad I can't picture what I'm reading... 60 y.o. woman's cleavage? no offense, but not something I find totally attractive)

- Jax + Treena: okay, I have to say yay, Treena never had sex with her husband who was Jax' father. and yes, Jax and Treena do have sex. So yes, I understand that probably, the author thinks that Treena having sex with the father and later, the son would be icky (EWWWW), and so Susan Anderson writes the story in such a way that Treena and Big Jim (why Big?) never consumated their marriage, but please. Why is it that they always do that? yes, I know... the ewww factor, but let's be realistic? what's the probability that a woman marries an older man and never have sex with him before and father the wedding? not at least once? so that, I found a bit unbelievable.

- Other than that, I need to re-read the book again to really enjoy it.

ps - thanx mailyn for the words of encouragement. Yes, it will and it must work.

Comfort reading...

hello everyone,

i've been busy in the lab and at the moment, I'm very close to crying because the experiments do not work T_T I'm going to give it a shot tomorrow as well.... but man, I don't feel like it. that'd be like 2 to 3 weeks of work wasted and I only have 2-3 weeks left. arghhh.

anyway, i haven't had time reading much. I did start and finish Skintight by Susan Andersen, but I really need to re-read it again in order to give a fair review. Since I'm at the lab and have to wait for at least 80 minutes and it's presently 6:43pm and that there's not way I'm going bother with the calculations of something that at this stage, I'm not sure it's going to work... I'm going to review Through a Crimson Veil by Patti O'Shea... which is presently, my re-read and comfort reading.

Through a Crimson Veil by Patti O'Shea: 4.5/5

What can i say? I just love, love, love this book! Through a Crimson Veil is part of the Crimson city series which is 5 or 6 books, each written by different author with the exception of Liz Maverick who wrote two. The series is about different paranormal beings (vampires, werewolves, demons, witches, druids, etc.) and explores their different "lifestyles" in Los Angeles, now known was Crimson City. L.A. has become Crimson City due to the amount of blood shed and it's actually going to become worse as humans and vampires, along with many other paranormal beings, are at war.

What I actually like about Through A crimson Veil is although a lot is happening in Crimson City, the book is mainly focused on the main characters: Mika Noguchi and Conor McCabe. I kind of like it, because instead of bring back characters from previous who are not her characters, the author doesn't risk writing something that wouldn't be them. So anyway, Mika is a half-demon (demon mother, human Japanese father) from a lower race, the Maisei: so she doesn't have much power, she can control the air and that's about it. A particularity of Maisei is that they are very spontaneous and they don't take things too seriously which was very interesting :D I actually, really liked Mika's personality. So demons have been banished from Crimson City for a long time and they live in another realm, separated by the "veil." However, they can appear in our realm if humans call them forth with spells and such, but as a half-demon, Mika has been able to cross the veil back and forth without the need of any help. Which is why she's been appointed by the council for a mission: to retrieve a spell from Conor McCabe. Mika accepts the mission, but she has an ulterior motive: Conor McCabe. Conor McCabe is also a half-demon, a Kiverian; however, he is much more powerful than Mika. In addition, unlike Mika, Conor has grown up in the human realm and in fact, he's a demon slayer (due to the fact that his mother was raped by a demon, he kind of hates them). So Mika accepts the mission because of Conor, since he's her mate and she wasn't sure she had one. Apparently, the mate bond between demons is very strong.

Anyway, as I said, a very good story. it really focuses on Conor and Mika and I like their personality. I've always found endearing when hero becomes protective and possessive (of course, there's a boundary) and this is exactly what happens to Conor. He doesn't want to fall in love with Mika, but he's interested and attracted. The development of the relationship is nice too :D and I luv Mika... perhaps some will find her annoying, but I don't. I like her personality and I think that she complements Conor well. Both balance themselves... In addition to a nice love story, you get some good actions and some suspens. The romance is the main focus, but the author didn't forget about the plot (the spell, the other demons, etc). The whole story was well plotted :D

So I really can't wait the short story of Kimiko Noguchi and Nic, respectively Mika's cousin and half-brother (but Kimiko and Nic are not blood-related), which will come out in January 2007 as part of Crimson City anthology.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

The books of this week-end...

So, once again, I spent almost all my week-end reading :P I really should be doing so lab work, but I'm a born procastinator. So I read :D

Day of Fire by Kathleen Nancy: 2.5/5

Day of Fire is the second book of the 2176 series, which consists of books written by different authors. My favorite so far is Power of Two by Patti O'Shea - it was really good :D So let me try to summarize the series...
The UCE: In the 21st and 22nd centuries, the United States changed and grew. Now the United Colonies of Earth dominate the globe. But a mysterious voice is broadcasting treason, inciting revolution and referring to the "Ideals of 1776"—and to an enigmatic figure named Banzai Maguire.
Banzai Maguire and her co-pilot are from the year, actually, I'm not sure, but they are from before 2000... they crashed during a routine exercise somewhere around North Korea. Scientists found their bodies and geo-crystallized them.... almost 200 years later when the world has changed, Banzai Maguire's body was revived... Founding herself in a different era, she starts hearing a voice, the Voice of Freedom, which tells them that they have to revolt in order to free themselves from the dictatorship of the UCE... and so, the series is 5 books about 5 different women during those perilous times.

Day of Fire is Day Daniels' story. Day is a Canadian Mountie whose mottos are Be it All, Do it All. In the year 2176, Canada has been cut off of the world, because bioterrorists have unleashed smallpox, ebola and other viruses during the year 2070. Abandonned by the world, Canada has to survive on their own... even today, in 2176, Canada is still in quarantine until they can prove that they are virus-free. Anyway, this quarantine period has given rise to the plague hunters, doctors - doctors in charge of eradicating and treating any epidemics. They are not well-loved as their presence usually indicate the presence of virus and it usually creates panic among the population. Anyway, Day Daniels is investigating the death of her partner, Luc Robicheaux, and has to partner with Julian Firebird, a plague hunter. Day Daniels is unhappy, because she is by the books while plague hunters are known to do whatever they want, whenever they want... however, she doesn't have a choice if she wants to find out Luc Robicheaux' murderer, because on Luc's Mountie hat, they found DNA of a new strain of smallpox. So basically, days before the announcement of the virus-free Canada, some ppl plan to release a new virus. Both investigate hard to try to stop this from happening, but it becomes more complicated when the all clues lead to the Shinook, a native tribe... whose leader is no one else than Julian Firebird.

Okay, first embarrassing admission... I might be Canadian, but I have no knowledge of the Mounties... in fact, you don't have many of them here. Anyway, that Day is a Mountie or regular cop, I don't really care. The original idea was a clever one, I have to admit... however, the book is completely ruined by Day in my opinion. At one point, I really wanted to tell her that the world doesn't revolve around her... sheeh. As the main character, she wasn't really likable... She kept jumping to conclusions even though she was told not to, she kept doubting Julian and both things were annoying as hell. And although she wasn't supposed to be, I thought she was conceited. Whenever they learn something, she had to thing how it affected her first. As for Julian, he was okay, but somewhat forgettable character. I also had difficulty to assimilate how Banzai and the whole Voice of Freedom thing and revolution was linked in this story... sure, it was mentioned... but why would Canada, who has just regained its status in the world would involve itself in the revolution? no idea.

Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas: 3.5/5

This novel is part of the Wallflower series... I haven't read any of them beside Devil in Winter and I wasn't planning to, but this book received so much praise that I was curious, so when I came across it at the used book store, I got it. I also got It Happened One Automn, but I kept reading how Lillian was not likeable in the Spring book, so it didn't make me want to read it... sigh.

Anyway, most of you already know the plot, but if you don't... it goes along the line of: Evangeline Jenner is a shy red-head who stammers. Her mother was the youngest of the Maybrick who as her rebellion, eloped with Ivo Jenner, a boxer from a lesser class who later found a club. Unfortunately for Evie, her mother died in childbirth and she was sent back to the Maybrick, as a club was nowhere to raise a young lady. The Maybricks are basically ashame of Evie lineage, so they've treated her badly (beat and starve her)... She also couldn't find a good match; however, Ivo Jenner is about to die and Evie is now an heiress, so the Maybricks plan to marry her to her cousin in order to profit from her inheritance. Evie knows that if this happens, she will probably die and so she runs to the rake, Viscount Sebastien St-Vincent who she knows need an heiress and makes him a proposition: he marries her so she can escape from her family, he gets lots of $$... they make love once, so the marriage is consumated and can't be annuled and after that no more. He will put a large amount of money aside for her and allow her to take care of her father for his last few days. Sebastien is in dire need of money and so he has no choice and accepts. So they get married, Ivo dies, the Maybricks try to get Evie back, Sebastien takes the rein of the club and Evie and Sebastien fall in love with each other.

All right... well, Devil in Winter was a good book, but I think I miss something somewhere because I don't understand the buzz it received. Evie is a great heroine tho... she's not stupid, she knows what she wants which is a great improvement from helpless heroines. She is gutsy and stubborn, so yeah, basically great. Sebastien on the other hand was okay... I didn't care much about his arrogance, his opinions and ways of thinking... and I got all confused by the way he was depicted. I mean, he is depicted one way, but then all his actions contradict his personality - I'm talking mainly about him managing the club. Okay, his friend Westcliff did say that his action was unlike him but why? because he loves Evie, is that why he's managing the club? or because he needs money? I believe it's more the latter... and then, the half-sibling plotline was SOOO obvious... Maybe I didn't want to like this book and it affect my opinion on the book or maybe it's because I prefer contemporaries... but still... it was an okay read, nothing really spectacular.

By the way, historicals lovers - don't you think the: "I can't believe he is kissing me down there" is a bit tiring... I know that they don't know... but not every author needs to have this generic scene in their books.

I see you by Holly Lisle: 4/5

So at least, one good book :D This was in my TBR pile after reading Tara Marie's blog :D It was her July TBR challenge... I thought it sound good, so I got it :D Yeah, I'm like that... few good words for a book and I want to own it ^^;

Dia Courvant is a paramedic and almost lives for her job. She's saved alot of lives, but has also seen a lot of deaths in her life ; however, the death that affected her most must have been her husband... Mac was also a paramedic, but one night, his ambulance was in an accident because the driver tried to avoid a kid and her team was dispatched for the rescue, but there was nothing she could do for him. Four years later, there are a series of bad car accidents and the worst is that someone is causing them. Detective Brig Hafferty is assigned to the case. He and his partner go to the EMT and there, he sees Dia whom he already met during the crash... both are drawn to each other: they're both each other type, although neither is looking and neither want a relationship. However, when Dia is being stalked and start receiving death threats, she calls in Brig for help and their attraction leads to combustion. So who's stalking Dia? Who wants her dead?

I thought the author handled the suspens part well and the book was indeed a bit freaky... all those messages appearing on the mirror, the dreams and the bits of paranormal elements. The only thing tho, it was kind of evident that it was one of Dia's friend ^^; Also, I was going to say that the car explosion was a bit far-fetched, but then I thought of the Plum books... and I though, no... actually, it could have happened :P Brig and Dia's relationship went fast... the first time they had sex, well I thought - wow, that was really really fast. I knew they were attracted, but it had be good if they waited a bit. Other than that, everything was pretty good. The spooky events, the murder, how everything was connected. However, I disagree with Tara Marie... This book did contain a fair amount of romance as we got to see a lot about their relationship and how it evolved.

That's it for today :D

ps - I see on Amazon that there is only 5 copies left of Ravyn's flight... what to do? should I order it or not? i'm actually going to Boston next week-end, maybe I could get it there... And how come Chapters and Indigo didn't get more copies?

Friday, August 11, 2006

My book shelves :D

If you've read my earlier posts, you probably know that I'm tired and my brain is mushy. That means I probably won't start a new book tonight... so instead of writing a review or a "recent reads" I'll post some pics... of my books :D I just transferred them from my camera to my computer.

It's kind of crazy the amount of books I have and I'm sure it's pretty much the same for all of us, bookworms :P When you look at the shelves, it's deceptive. Anyway, I used to only have one bookshelve, but I needed another one... so my sister gave me hers (sometimes, she can be really sweet :)

So this is the sorting of the books:

And this is once it's all in order and nicely shelved:

So, basically, I have a shelf for my hardcovers, an unit for my paperbacks and smaller unit for my manga. Now, this was back in January... ^^; Oh, by the way, in the pics, my paperbacks' unit... that's double-stacked (i.e. that there's a layer of books behind what you see) and now, I'm at triple-stacking my books. By a quick count, I can say that I've acquired 7 new hardcovers, close to a 100 (yes, a 100... I can't believe it either) paperbacks and I can't keep track of the mangas... Amazing. Frightening.

I kind of understand why my mom thinks that I buy too much books... Anyway, I should start looking for a new shelving unit... and place to put it in my room. My dad told me to put some of my books in the basement... but at the thought of my books in the basement, where it's cold, humid and dark... my poor books!

So that's it for today :D

Review: Eternal Nights by Patti O'Shea

Okay, so just to let some of you know, I successfully reserved Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase at the library (lucky me that they had a copy!) and it'll probably be returned by the end of the month. :D

Now onto the review - you guys will have to excuse me, it might be 8 a.m., but I'm exhausted. I've been staying late at the lab and staying up late to finish the book, so my mind is a bit sluggish, my body aches and I should already be on my way to the lab ^^;

All right, the review. Did any of you find an author with a style of stories you just loved no matter what? I mean, yeah, I'm a fan of Kay Hooper and Kelley Armstrong, but that's mostly because they write very well. As for Patti O'Shea, I'm not telling that she doesn't write good books, far from it... it's just that I LOVE her books (okay, there's not a ton... only 3 and I've read 2 - not counting this one) unconditionally. I discovered her through Through a Crimson Veil. It got mild reviews while I thought it was fantastic, so maybe it's just be... something in her books just appeal to me.

Eternal Nights by Patti O'Shea: 4.25/5

Wyatt Montgomery and Kendall Thomas are lovers... soulmates... from a previous life. However, only Wyatt remembers their previous life as Berkant and Zoalianna. Wyatt and Kendall are both captains in the army and are presently stationned in the Old City of J Nine, a planet lights away from Earth. Wyatt immediately recognizes Kendall as Zoalianna, but she is a completely different person, but this doesn't stop him from falling in love. Meanwhile, Kendall is afraid of love relationships and treats Wyatt as her best friends, cos friendship lasts forever while love...

Wyatt knows that something's been bugging Kendall, but the girl is closed-mouth. So he asks a friend/soldier, Catfish, to keep an eye on Kendall while he is out on the field. Why is Kendall so nervous? Because she's stumbled over a smuggling ring. See, most people on J Nine are there as archeologists to investigate on the vestiges of the Old City + the army to protect the civillians. Kendall is somewhat attracted to the Old City and particularly its temple (that pyramid on the cover). So she's been gathering evidences of the smuggling ring and when she went to colonel Alex Sullivan to inform him, he blows her up because he's been called to the murder scene of... Catfish. Meanwhile, Kendall is being pursued by the thieves and take refuge in the temple where Wyatt will join her. Both get stuck in the temple - lost with pratically no food and no water - and they have to find a way out of there, avoiding if possible the smugglers and once outside, tell colonel Sullivan so he can stop the smugglers from escaping free.

Okay, as I said, my recap of the story is not that good - blame it on the mush brain. However, I can tell you I like the book a lot! There are basically 3 storylines :

1) Wyatt and Kendall : I really liked the fact that it was Wyatt that really went after Kendall. He knows that Kendall's childhood has made her wary of love and that if he tells her he loves her, she'll bolt. So he takes it slowly, as much as he can, he's very patient and considerate. Another thing I like was that he fell in love with her... no in lust. And he might have recognized Kendall as Zoalianna; however, she's a completely different person - physically and personality wise. As he said, Berkant loved Zoalianna and Wyatt Montgomery loves Kendall Thomas. Really sweet. Oh and I liked how he was the one having memories of their past lives and she had none and that they didn't recognize at sight.

2) Berkant and Zoalianna: basically, their love was forbidden. I don't want to talk too much about their relationship because it would spoil a lot about the book. Basically, you get pieces from Wyatt and the bulk from Kendall's dream. Ever since she met Wyatt, Kendall has had these bloody dreams which makes her worried that she's endangering Wyatt. Then, as they enter the temple, she starts to remember the past as dreams.

3) Alex Sullivan and Stacey Johnson: Alex is the colonel and he's pretty much the single-minded man that most army soldiers are depicted as. He's been in a relationship with Stacey for 3 years, but not even once did he tell her he loves her. After 3 years of doing all the work in the relationship and finding out that she's pregnant, Stacey has had enough. He doesn't love her enough and he won't be a good father... so she decides to break up and return to Earth. Meanwhile, Alex has issues of his own, but he's going to win Stacey back for sure.

So I like the book: the love relationships, the action and everything :D (Maybe I'm biaised)... However, there are still some flaws and that's why the grade is only 4.25.


1) The book has the same settings as Ravyn's Flight which is the only book I didn't read... However, this book is supposed to be a standalone. In that case, I found that the author didn't put enough background in the settings for readers who have not read Ravyn's Flight to completely understand.

2) oh yeah, (I blanked during a moment trying to remember)... J Nine is another planet right? Berkant and Zoalianna were inhabitant of J Nine 3000 years ago. So what, their past lives were as alien? That just bugged me a little, because well, you know... alien.

3) Wyatt and Kendall have only known each other for 4 months in this life. When I read 4 months, even factoring the previous life and all, I thought: that's a bit too short. Make it half a year or a year and it would have been more believable.

4) her nickname... Wyatt calls her Bug. Where does that come from?

So that's it :D a really good read if you guys like a bit of fantasy/paranormal. If you like her other books, don't miss this one. I'm so looking forward to her next story - a continuation of Through a Crimson Veil with Kimiko Noguchi and Nic as main characters, basically Mika's cousin and half-brother. The only bummer is that it's going to be in an anthology of the Crimson City series (Shards of Crimson) so that means it won't be full length :( On the other good news is that she seems to have a contract for 2 more books coming out in 2007 and 2008 (yeah for me)!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Review: Summer at the Willow Lake by Susan Wiggs

Summer at Willow Lake by Susan Wiggs: 3/5

What to say about this book? Well I thought that the way the story was told was very similar to Susan Wiggs' other book Summer by the Sea; however, the story wasn't as compelling. When I started reading the book and saw how similar it was to Summer by the Sea, I thought I would really like it, but it didn't happen.

After her third failed engagement, Olivia Bellamy - expert house fluffer - decides to take on her grandmother's offer: to renovate the bungalow colony/summer camp in Catskills that her family owns so her grandparents can celebrate their 50th marriage anniversary. Although she went to Camp Kioga every summer when she was younger, the place doesn't hold Olivia's fondest memories... instead, to Olivia, it reminds her painfully of the time when her parents divorced and she was overweight and an outcast, if it hadn't been for her cousins, Camp Kioga would have been horrible. In addition, Camp Kioga is also the place where she met Connor Davis - her first everything: first love, first kiss, first broken heart. So when she goes back to Catskills, she meets Connor again as he is the only contractor available. So Summer at Willow Lake is the story of how Olivia and Connor fall in love again with a series of flashbacks of their camp summers and a multitude of secondary characters.

I don't know what's up with me lately and I'm starting to wonder if the books I'm reading are only okay because I'm being too harsh with them... sigh... Anyway, the problem with Summer At Willow Lake is that nothing happened and too much happened at the same time. I'm not making sense, am I? I think it all has to do with the pace of the book... In one chapter, Connor just accepted the contract and in the next, a few weeks have already passed and so much progress was done... then, the next thing you know, summer is over and the grandparents are renewing her vows. So time went too fast, but it seems Olivia and Connor relationship didn't progress at all.

My second complaint: way too many secondary characters and subplots ^^; you had Olivia's best friend, Freddy, and all her family (father, uncle, cousins, grandparents, long-lost sister) and then, as if it wasn't enough, the author brings in Julian, Connor's brother half-way in the book... and all of them have some a little storyline. I like my book to focus on the main couple or at least, the main characters, so I found the secondary characters disrupting. And because the focus wasn't on the main characters, I thought that Olivia and Connor came accross a bit bleh. Olivia is very insecure, so not a really fun character to read about and Connor, well I thought he lacked a tiny bit of depth.

Aside from that, the book was okay... relaxing. You didn't have to think much, wonder much... There was no major investigation or murder, it solely focused on relationship. The openining scene was funneh too (she's hanging on the top of the flag pole ^^;)

So, not Susan Wiggs at her best, but I'm going to keep the book and see how the next ones in the Chronicles are before making up my mind a 100%.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Review: Hot and Bothered by Susan Andersen

Hot and Bothered by Susan Andersen: 3/5

Quick, quick review before I go to work. So I finished Just for Kicks and since it was so good, I decided to try Hot and Bothered right away.

Hot and Bothered is the story of Victoria Hamilton and John Rocket M. (too long, difficult italian name for me to remember right now). Victoria and John were lovers for a week 6 years ago. The deal: one week of pure pleasure, no string attached, no last name... However, Victoria fell in love with John and so before the week was up, she slipped away. Result of that week: Esme, cute little girl. Once she was pregnant, her rich, neglecting, magnate father was scandalized and gave her two choices: either get an abortion or marry a banker of his choice. In the end, fed up, Victoria moved to London to put some distance between her father and her. Unfortunately, she had to leave her little half-brother - Jared-, whom she promised to protect, behind.

So 6 years later, Victoria's father is murdered... Jared has ran away and has become the prime suspect. Moving all her things from London back to the States, Victoria hires a P.I. to find her runaway brother... P.I. turns out to be John Rocket M. John's life was changed by Victoria - his whole attitude twds sex and all. After their week, he gave up the marines and became a P.I. and so he was very happy to see Victoria once again... until he saw Esme. So basically, the story is about John and Victoria still being attracted to each other, finding Jared, John learning to be a father and finding the murder.

The book was okay, but nothing wow. No really funneh situation, except maybe when John and Esme played Barbies and John transformed them into a platoon. Esme was cute, but that's it. In short, the book didn't really catch my attention and then, you skipped jumping back and forth in their relationship. I find it really annoying when two people are obviously attracted and are not sure whether or not they should get together... and then, they are from different social class, so that's another obstacle...

Monday, August 07, 2006

Review: Just for Kicks by Susan Andersen

Ah, finally a good book :D I haven't read a book that I truly enjoyed for the past couple weeks, so this book comes as a relief :D

Just for Kicks by Susan Andersen: 4.25/5 (B+)

So I was looking for good books and came across the title while visiting Zeek's blog when she asked for suggestions. Zeek said she had to go buy this one and so when I saw it at Waltmart yesterday, I picked it up (25% off :P) The funny thing is that there's not really a plot. I mean, yes, there's a storyline, but no intrigue, no murder, no investigation... so I guess this was the change from the other books I've been reading recently. And from what I gathered, this is the sequel to Skintight, which I'll try to find this week.

Carly Jacobson is a Vegas showgirl living in some condo unit. She's been having a tough time lately, because her latest baby (animals that she finds and bring back home), Rufus, has been toying with her nerves. Rufus is a pup that simply doesn't listen to orders and that could mean troubles if her new neighbor, Wolfgang Jones, decide to complain to the condo manager as each tenant can only have on pet... and Carly has 4. Carly and Wolfgang work at the same establishment (I think it's some sort of casino) and to say they don't get along well is putting it mildly. In short, both don't think highly of each other: in Carly's opinion, Wolfgang is too stuck up and unsociable while Wolfgang believes that Carly is an irresponsible chit.

Actually, Carly's opinion of Wolfgang is not far from the truth... as Wolfgang is very serious, a bit inflexible and doesn't like to socialize much. Because of his father's work, Wolfgang had had to move a lot, both within USA and abroad, and he has lived in many embassies; however, not as the rich socialite, but as the son of middle class. So after having been snobbed by the higher social class in his teens, Wolfgang has come up with THE plan: basically, he's working in security at a casino in Vegas to gain experience in order to become head director of a security branch in some big company. Once he'll get his dream job, he'll find a nice woman to marry... someone nice, gentle and responsible... the complete opposite of Carly.

However, Wolfgang and Carly get to know each other better when Niklaus, Wolfgang's nephew, move in with him. Niklaus is 17 y.o. and is the son of Wolfgang's daughter. Pretty much like Wolfgang, the teenager has had to move a lot in his life due to his flimsy mother. Worried about his association with some not so nice kids, the grandparents decide that it's perhaps better to have Niklaus move with Wolfgang for some stability... however, the question is how long will this stability last as Wolfgang will soon move to another state for his job.

My synopsis of the book is not that good ^^; but it's kind of hard to write one up, because as I say, there's no major event or showdown in the book. Basically, what I liked about this book is that Wolfgang and Carly didn't tiptoe around sex... as in, there wasn't a zillion scenes of foreplay. So Carly and Wolfgang had a bad start as they don't think much of each other, but they can't deny that they are attracted to each other. Once they get together, they get to learn from each other... Actually, it is Wolfgang who gets to know Carly better and his opinion of her changes for the better. At the same time, Wolfgang starts to change as well; he's becoming more friendly for his job, for Carly and for Niklaus. Something else I liked was the neighborhood: Carly's best friend, Treena, and fiance, Jax, as well as the older couple, Mack and Elyse. Their relationships are fun and relax, when reading the book I'm thinking: how I'd like to have neighbors like them. Niklaus storyline was nice as well and it was fun for once not to read about a bullied or outcast teenager. Finally, Wolfgang giving up his nice plan for his love for Carly and Niklaus.

so this book is definitively a keeper :D

Sunday, August 06, 2006

My August TBR pile

So quite frankly, I never used to have a TBR pile and I didn't know ppl had one before looking for reviews on the net ^^; However, I've been accumulating lately and since there's not enough space in the side bar, I'd like to share it with you:

The Turning by Jennifer Armintrout
Touch the Dark by Karen Chance
The Crazy series (all of them) by Tara Janzen
Much Ado in the Moonlight by Lynn Kurland
Into the Night by Suzanne Brockmann
The Protector/The Hunter/ Facing Fear by Gennita Low
Angel with Attitude by Michelle Rowen
Split by Tara Moss
Hot and Bothered/Just for Kicks by Susan Anderson
To Catch a Wolf by Susan Krinard
I see You by Holly Isle
Black Ice by Anne Stuart
Goodness Had Nothing to do with It by Lucy Monroe
Day of Fire by Kathleen Nance
It happened One Autumn/Devil in the Winter by Lisa Kleypas
War of the Spider Queen series by various authors

and in addition, some of the books from the library... but I'm not sure I'll be reading them :P So if any of you have read some of these books, let me know if it was good :D

Recent reads - take 4

Hello everyone,

I haven't post much comments lately, not because I'm not reading, but because I'm exhausted. My supervisor at the lab is gone, but thanx god, he's coming back on Tuesday. My experiment is not working and I'm hoping it's not because contamination.

So onto my recent reads:

Never a Lady by Jacquie D'Alessandro: 2/5

Hmmm. There were a mini-discussion about slutty cover at Romancelover blog and this cover totally qualifies as slutty cover. The inside flap is even worst, cos you have the man in addition ^^; So why did I buy the book? I was curious and bored. By the end of the book, I was no longer curious, but still bored.

This is my first book by Jacquie D'Alessandro and well, it didn't impress me. It couldn't catch my attention at all which means that I pretty much skimmed through the book.

Alexandra is a card reader and is presently the "hot" stuff of the ton. She pretends to be married and is hired at different soirées. At one of the soirée, she sees Colin Oliver, Viscount Sutton, and panics... she doesn't know the man, but recognizes him. Indeed, Alexandra grew up in the less favorable parts of London and was a pickpocket. One night, she met Colin in an alley and tried to steal his watch, but got caught. She successfully ran away, but her cards have predicted that she would meet the man again. Meanwhile, Colin is returning to London to search for a wife after a long retreat at his estate. Then at the soirée, he sees Alexandra and recognizes her. He is relieved, because he never forgot her and often wondered if she was still alive or not. While trying to avoid Colin, Alex runs into a room and overhears two persons planning a murder. She leaves a note to the victim, but he still dies. Then, she becomes a target and Colin decides that it is his duty to protect her.

So, as the grade shows, I didn't really enjoy the book. The whole thing between Alexandra and Colin seems forced. Her fears that he would recognize her as the pickpocket and would tell the ton, ruining her was blown out of proportion and I don't really understand Colin's obsession with Alexandra either. I mean, he admits that he's been worried about her and have gone back to the alley many times to look of her, but to no avail. You also Alexandra's charity cause: every night, at her house, she welcomes little children that have no where to stay, but I think it was mentioned once and then, we never read about it anymore because she didn't stay at home anymore for the duration of the book. What was disappointing is that the author had all the settings ready and she didn't use them effectively: Alexandra's generosity, her being a card reader, the murder, etc. and then, the author focus solely on the romance. It is a romance, true, but instead of playing out all her cards, she goes down the stereotypic road with the jealousy and all. Then, it just took forever for Colin to realize that he was in love with Alexandra. His brother and sister-in-law were dropping hints such as he has found his lady, he should stop looking for a wife, but the guy still doesn't get it... Even when she broke up their affaire, he was still clueless. All he can think about is Alexandra, but he doesn't put one and one together.

So yeah, my advice... skip this one. If you really want to read it, borrow it.

The Sexy series by Linda Francis Lee

I've been looking for good contemporaries lately and had had some difficulties coming up with good books. I stumbled over Jazz's review of  Suddenly Sexy at the Sanctuary and so I decided to give it a go. So I put some books aside and started to read Suddenly Sexy and  Sinfully Sexy.

Suddenly Sexy: 3.5/5

Again, hmmm. To get the summary, you should go to Jazz's review. Basically Katie was in love with Jesse Chapman, her childhood friend 4 years her senior. However, he left mostly because he didn't think he was worthy for her. Now he comes back to town, looking for tranquility, because he's losing his game. See, Jesse is a pro golfer who's a favorite to win a PGA tournament, but he lost his game after he saved a woman who was hit by a golf club. So he thinks that going home will help him regain his game; however, once home, old tension between him and his brother resurfaces, his lust for Katie also returns and he finds out he fathered a son 13 years ago. Not really helping.

Meanwhile, Katie was a news anchor, but is now giving her own talk-show. This is because the tv station where she and her two best friends, Julia and Chloe, are working need to increase their ratings and after a survey, viewers think that Katie is stiff, boring, unwielding and yadayadayada. So the talk-show is an attempt for her to get a new image...

The book wasn't so bad, but the whole "Getting Real with Kate" talk-show was boring and her attempts of trying to be someone else too. That's probably what got on my nerve and the book would probably have been a 4 instead of a 3.5. What also disappoints me a bit is that Jesse and Katie's relationship wasn't sweet enough :P Oh, last thing. I usually love kids in books and Travis is no exception... when he took the strawberry ice cream box, that was so cute. However, I think that there were enough family stuff to deal with - Jesse's father and brother, Katie's mother and sister (by the way, Jesse's brother and Katie's sister are married) , that bringing in a kid, no matter how mature and cute, was unnecessary. By the way, Katie had such a hard time and she became the adult and all, what was her sister doing during that time?

Sinfully Sexy: 2.5/5

So Sinfully Sexy is the second book and Chloe's story. The sad thing about that book is that Katie almost completely disappeared. It seems to me that the author thought: Katie's story is over, don't need to talk about her anymore... so that was a bit of a disappointment. Anyway, let's talk about Chloe.

Chloe took a quizz in a magazine to see how "sexy" she was... and instead of choosing any choices given, she always added her own answer to the multiple choices... so of course, she failed ^^; So one night, when she has to replace Julia at a soirée, she decided to test if she really could be sexy. The result: yes. She ended up in the woman's bathroom of the hotel lobby almost making love with Sterling Prescott, handsome CEO of Prescott Media. However, at the last minute, some ppl are banging at the door and Chloe chickens out so she slips out. Next morning, she has a meeting with some rating analysist from Prescott Media along with Julia and who turns up? Sterling Prescott and his younger brother, Ben (Ben's a cop by the way). So what does Chloe do? She pretends she doesn't know him. Anyway, at the same time, Julia and Chloe mistake Sterling for his employee, Trey Tanner, whom Sterling just fired because of his sudden softness. Sterling wants to clear up the misundertanding, but oups, Chloe doesn't really have a high opinion of "Sterling Prescott" and so, Sterling takes up a challenge to prove her wrong.

Okay, so maybe I'm harsh with the grading of this book, but I didn't like it much. First, Sterling Prescott should be yummy, but he isn't... at least to me. The man is rich and wealthy and privileged I guess, but you're going to tell me he never made coffee or normal stuff? I find that hard to believe given he started his major in microbiology. Just didn't make sense to me... Actually, my biggest difficulty with this character is that he seemed to have multi-personalities... He had so many different traits that put together gave contrary person. I mean, Roarke from the In Death series is a yummy rich, charismatic CEO... Sterling, well, he's confused and not that confident in the end. So hero wasn't quite attractive. Then, there's the whole reality TV show: The catch and his dozen Texan Roses. Urgh. Think the Bachelor. I really dislike watching those shows in real life, but to read about it? No. In addition, the night before production begins, The Catch and one of the rose elope, so who replace them? If your answer was Sterling and Chloe, well bravo. I mean, that was completely stupid... since Sterling and Chloe were already attracted to each other + they were still producers of the show at the same time. So the whole reality tv show was a bummer... and both Chloe and Sterling's family situations weren't interesting read.

So now, there's the last book of the series... Simply Sexy which is Julia's story and her love interest is Ben, Sterling's younger brother, whose facing bad times as one of his undercover work went wrong. So I'll be completely honest and seriously, I don't feel like reading this one... From what I got from the two previous book, I don't really like Julia... so perhaps I'll wait for Jazz's review before reading it.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Review: Date Me, Baby, One More Time by Stephanie Rowe

Yes, I got my hands on Date me, Baby, One more Time :D Finally. So here's my review:

Date Me, Baby, One More Time by Stephanie Rowe: 4/5

There's been quite a lot of reviews about this book, so I'm going to try to keep the story/synopsis short. Basically, Dereck Lavalle believes that all the men of his family are cursed and that they are to die on the day they turn 31 y.o. and from his ancestor journal, the only way he finds to end the curse is to behead the Guardian of Desdemona's temptation goblet and drink from the goblet. Although no one believes him, it doesn't matter since he doesn't have time to argue: he and his fraternal twin turn 31 y.o. in one week.

Meanwhile, Justine Bennett is the Guardian and the goblet is presently an expresso machine. For the past 200 years, she's been on probation for her job which comes with a thick book of rules - complete devotion to Mona (the goblet), no sex, no distraction, etc. She lives in NY with her roomate and successor, Theresa Nichols. The ick is that Theresa is actually an eleven foot dragon.

Basically, Dereck finds Justine and they fall in love/lust so they are trying to find loopholes so they don't have to kill each other... or loopholes that would explain why they let the other lives so long. The story is complicated by Satan who wants Iris, Justine's mother, to become Queen of Hell, position that she doesn't want to occupied, so Justine is pressure to do her job.

Okay, so the book was a great read as the grading indicates: light and hilarious, since it's so unrealistic, you don't care if it doesn't make sense anymore. What I actually like is that you get some paranormal, but no vampires, werewolves or witches... so the book is quite refreshing. Of course, they were a few things that bug me and by the end, I thought that Iris and her relationship to Satan was annoying. Does the woman loves him or not? and if yes, why doesn't she accept staying with him? however, it's still highly entertaining. My only regret is I believe I would have enjoyed the book better if I could have read it in one sitting, which I did not, because of lab work, watching House M.D. and the thunderstorm yesterday night. Try reading when the power goes out every 10 minutes for about 5 min. Really annoying. So I'll probably re-read the book in a few months.