Monday, May 9, 2011

Review: Cutting Loose

Cutting Loose
Susan Andersen
379 pages
My Rating: 4/5


Jane thinks nothing can make her lose her coolBut the princess of propriety blows a gasket the night she meets the contractor restoring the Wolcott mansion. Devlin Kavanagh's rugged sex appeal may buckle her knees, but the man is out of control! Jane had to deal with theatrics growing up—she won't tolerate them in someone hired to work on the house she and her two best friends have just inherited.
Dev could renovate the mansion in his sleep. But ever since the prissy owner spotted him jet-lagged, exhausted and hit hard by a couple of welcome-home drinks, she's been on his case. Yet there's something about her. Jane hides behind conservative clothes and a frosty manner, but her seductive blue eyes and leopard-print heels hint at a woman just dying to cut loose!

My Thoughts:
As many of you well know, I have been reading romance/fluff books of late.  Though I think my romance kick may be coming to an end, I still have numerous books to review so gear up for some romantic book days.

I branched out a little bit with this book.  It was the first time I had read Susan Andersen, and I am pleased to say that I was impressed with her work.  She wrote a fun, romantic, not-too-sexual novel that I thoroughly enjoyed. 

Cutting Loose is the first in the Sisterhood Diaries series.  It encompasses three best friends who inherit a grand estate from an eccentric elderly lady they befriended when they were children.  Each book focuses on one of the women and how they find love (typical considering it's a romance).   But what I was impressed with was the was Andersen wrote each character.  She reminded me of Nora Roberts and her Bride Quartet series in which she created a "family" and each book followed the family deeper as major changes occurred.  Andersen did the same here (and I expect her to continue on in the next two books in the trilogy).   She creates a home-like/family setting with each member being the friends.  The novel included more than just boy-meets-girl, they-fall-in-love story.  It encompassed a background and setting in which you got to know the characters and were rooting for them in the end.  Having read many romance novels in a row, I've found that not all authors capture the story beyond the meet-cute and the loving.  Andersen did a wonderful job, and she has earned a place on my romance author shelf. 

As to the story of Cutting Loose, I truly enjoyed getting to know Jane.  She reminded me of myself in some ways, always seeking to have control.  She was completely relateable, and I found myself thinking that we could have been friends were she present in real life.  I enjoyed watching her begin to recognize her coping mechanisms and learn from her mistakes. 

Dev was definitely a great match for Jane, and I loved the family that Andersen placed him in.  Big families always fascinate me, and any character that is well-places in one keeps my attention.  I would have enjoyed getting to know Dev a little more, as his protests for living in another country away from his family didn't completely fit with his loyalty.   I just felt that that particular plot could have been expanded a little more with a positive influence on the character. 

All in all, I truly enjoyed this novel.  I read it in an afternoon and I was not constantly looking at the percentage on the bottom of my kindle to see where I was.  I escaped into the novel and enjoyed the time I was there.  I gave the novel a 4/5 because its not a book that gave lasting impressions but it was fun, and I can definitely see myself reading it again when I'm looking for a pleasant afternoon distraction.   

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Review: See Jane Score

See Jane Score
Rachel Gibson
384 pages
My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

This is Jane
A little subdued. A little stubborn. A little tired of going out on blind dates with men who drive vans with sofas in the back, Jane Alcott is living the Single Girl existence in the big city. She is also leading a double life. By day, she's a reporter covering the raucous Seattle Chinooks hockey team -- especially their notorious goalie Luc Martineau. By night, she's a writer, secretly creating the scandalous adventures of "Honey Pie" ... the magazine series that has all the men talking.
See Jane Spar
Luc has made his feelings about parasite reporters -- and Jane -- perfectly clear. But if he thinks he's going to make her life miserable, he'd better think again.
See Jane Attract
For as long as he can remember, Luc has been single-minded about his career. The last thing he needs is a smart-mouthed, pain-in-the-backside reporter digging into his past and getting in his way. But once the little reporter sheds her black and gray clothes in favor of a sexy red dress, Luc sees that there is more to Jane than originally meets the eye.
Maybe it's time to take a risk. Maybe it's time to live out fantasies. Maybe it's time to ... see Jane score.

My Review:
First of all, let me say that I could not really find a cover that I really liked to post with this review.  So I went with the best I could find.  Just don't judge this book by it's cover.

Perhaps it takes reading some bad romance to truly appreciate a talented romance author, but I can definitely say that I have lots of appreciation for Ms. Gibson and her ability to write a fun romance.  I definitely enjoyed this novel.  It was fun, with enough depth to add a realistic touch to it.  
 
This book is the second in the Chinooks Hockey Team series.  I like the way that Ms. Gibson constructed the series so far, in that she did not write about each player on the team in a certain year.  She spaced out the novels so that though the former characters were seen, each novel was different enough that it could stand alone.

So far, this book is my favorite of Ms. Gibson's work.  Perhaps it is that I related most to the main character, Jane, but I truly enjoyed reading about both main characters.  I liked that Jane was not the perfect heroine.  I related to her perfectly, being a fellow short female that is intimidated by tall people in general.  But I also liked that she was not the cookie cutter idea of the perfect woman.  And Ms. Gibson perfectly highlighted her insecurities.  It made me related well to her, and I cheered her on as the not-so-perfect-looking woman found love.

Luc.  Ok, definitely super swoon worthy.  Though he was the perfect, beautiful sounding hero, I loved that Gibson added depth to his character.  She includes parts of his personal life that made him more than something to drool at.  She did an excellent job creating a lovable, sigh-able, and cheer-worthy character.

I think the thing I enjoy most about Rachel Gibson's books is her incredible ability to make me laugh.  She takes a typical romance plot and adds some depth and many laughs to make it very enjoyable.  I laughed out loud several times, and I can't even count the number of times I smiled to myself.  It made for the perfect combination for a Sunday afternoon read.

As most of you can probably tell, my reading tendencies have leaned toward fluff reading lately.  But I can say that Ms. Gibson definitely delivers on the fun romance front.  I read her entire novel in an afternoon, and I enjoyed every minute of it.  For someone who has been battling migraines of late, her book took me out of my room into a world full of fun and romance.  And I forgot that I had a headache for a couple of hours.  It was exactly what I needed, and I would recommend this novel to any fan of chick lit.  It's wonderful in that it delivers on laughs and romance, but it does not simply focus on the boy-meets-girl plot in a way that would make it boring.  Ms. Gibson takes an age-old concept of romance and made it completely worth reading.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Birthday Giveaway Winners!

And I realized that I have been remiss in announcing my winners.  So here it goes.

The Winner of Birthday Giveaway Week 2 is .............

Kjovus


The Winner of Birthday Giveaway Week 3 is...............

Justine H.

Congrats to both of you.  I've emailed both of the winners.  Don't forget that I will have two more giveaways this month (one of which is up now).  

Review: Simply Irresistible

Simply Irresistible
Rachel Gibson
384 pages
My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Georgeanne Howard can't marry the wealthy older man who's waiting for her at the altar. But her only route to freedom is with John Kawalsky, one of the bad-boy hockey players from the team her wealthy fiance owns. The two spend one night together, but John is at the height of his career and isn't looking to settle down. When their paths collide again years later, John discovers there is a reminder of the time they spent together: a daughter!






My Thoughts:
If you have been following my Twitter (which everyone should do :) ), you will know that I have been in a bit of serious reading funk.  It also explains my lack of posting.  I realized yesterday that I have become one of those bloggers who only posts giveaways and memes.  However, I am determined to have that only be a phase.  My reading funk mostly derives from the fact that work has been super stressful, and I've brought home worries.  So, I have spent my time reading some serious fluff.  Though there have been those who have looked down on chick lit, I have to say that I disagree with those who say that it is worthless nonsense.   There are times when we need fun, romance, and comedy.  I have needed nothing more than to laugh and escape for a while.  My chick lit has provided that.  I simply cannot handle any more stress right now.  So the reason I am saying this is that the next couple of reviews I will write are all about the romance, fun, and romantic comedy books.  And since this is my outlet to share and discuss what I am reading, I'm doing to do that.  And sharing my chick lit with you.  
That being said, Rachel Gibson is a new author that I have found in my search for fun books.  I have been impressed with her ability to write sweet romance and funny one-liners.  She writes characters that I could connect with and picture perfectly in my mind.  I really enjoyed this novel.

Simply Irresistible is the first book in the Chinooks Hockey Team series.  For those of you who are not into hockey, the Chinooks are from Seattle.   It's a professional hockey team, but this novel does not include a whole lot of hockey references.  It's more of a background to the story instead of the major setting.

The novel follows the story of Georgeanne and John.  At first, I thought I would not like Georgeanne because she seemed (from the description of the novel) to be an airhead gold-digger.  However, Ms. Gibson takes what was Georgeanne's former life to show how much she grows.  She's not a gold-digger, so don't be put off by that impression.  And watching Georgeanne struggle and grow into something she wants to be proud of truly helped me connect with the character.  Ms. Gibson did not write a perfect character.  She wrote one with flaws, like all of us.  And it made Georgeanne more loveable.

The main story of this novel is that after a one-night stand, Georgeanne and John have a daughter - Lexie.  Can I just say that I loved the six-year-old characterization?  Lexie was hilarious.  She just jumped out of the novel at me.  She reminded me a lot of the little girl in the movie No Reservations played by Abigail Breslin.  Abigail Breslin is exactly who I pictured as Lexie.  But the little six-year-old provides most of the comic relief.  She just cracked me up.  I love kids, and Lexie definitely made this book.

I rate chick lit a little differently, more harshly you could say.  Because chick lit, by it's nature, is made to have you escape and stop thinking.  And part of my rating system is books that make an impression, make you think days after you've read it.  So, just realize that a 3 or 3.5 star rating is not bad.  It means that I thoroughly enjoyed it, even though I'll probably forget the plot by next year.  Which means I can enjoy it again next year.  

I gave this book a 3.5 rating because I really enjoyed it.  I laughed a lot, and I had fun getting to know the characters.  Each character was complete, and I could see who each one was.  It's a great, fun book.  I would definitely recommend it to any lover of chick lit.  And anyone who needs a good laugh.  It was a perfect escape for an afternoon.

Birthday Giveaway Week 4

This is the fourth week of April, thus the fourth giveaway in celebration of me and my birthday!   I've had a lot of fun putting these giveaways together for you guys.  This week I've put together a package of one of the best series in young adult fiction as well as my personal introduction to the genre of dystopia:  The Hunger Games.  Though I have not read all of them, I am giveaway the entire trilogy, because I can't stand things not being completed (which goes against me not finishing the trilogy yet, but that's another story - in that I don't want the story to end).  As before, the giveaway is open internationally to all countries that The Book Depository ships to.  One entry per person.  The giveaway will run from today to next Sunday (May 1st at midnight, EST).  Good luck everybody.

The package:
The Hunger Games
Catching Fire
Mockingjay

Friday, April 15, 2011

Birthday Giveaway Week 3


It's time for week 3 of my birthday month celebration.  This week, I chose to giveaway two of my favorite adult novels.  These two are definitely on the top of my list of favorite adult books of all time, and I am excited to share them with you.  Like the previous birthday giveaways, this contest is open internationally, as long as The Book Depository ships to you.  There is one entry per person, and the winner will be chosen by random.org.  Fill out the form below to enter.  Good luck everyone.

Now for the goods......  (links are to my reviews)
The Host by Stephanie Meyer
An awesome science fiction novel

and....

Delirious by Daniel Palmer
The best psychological thriller I've read

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Birthday Giveaway Week 1 Winner!



I am happy to announce that I've picked my Birthday Giveaway Week 1 winner.  The number was chosen through random.org.

And the winner is (drum roll....)


Lexie@BookBug


She won a copy of Prom and Prejudice, Pride and Prejudice, and The Body Finder.  Congrats Lexie!  

Thanks for the entries everyone.  Make sure to check out the other giveaways this month regarding my Birthday Celebration! 

Thursday Update

So when I said in the last post that I would be back in a bit, I'm pretty sure I did not mean five days later.  :)  Things got a little crazy, so my blog suffered.  But I thought I would give a general update on the readathon and such, and then work on some reviews.  Since I did not get to do an IMM, I figured this would sort of suffice.

Firstly, Dewey's 24 hour readathon was fantastic.  I believe I read a total of 14 hours.  Sleep did end up beating me, but I still had fun the hours I was awake.  I also got to meet some awesome people and make some new blogger and book friends!  I'm definitely pro-twitter after that event.  I was also able to read several books, none of which I planned to read actually.  I have had some rough days at work, so I have been in a fluff reading stage.  Not always the most intellectual reading, but I do believe everyone needs a place for some fluff, fun, and romance.  So here's what I read during the readathon:
  • Something About You - Julie James
  • A Lot Like Love - Julie James
  • Just the Sexiest Man Alive - Julie James
  • Borrowed Stilettos - Rebecca Clark
Secondly, I have no forgotten about my month-long bday celebration.  Thanks to everyone who has wished me a happy birthday.  It was a wonderful birthday, and I'm happy to say that I still smile occasionally just from the idea that April is my month. 

That being said, my birthday giveaway week 2 is still going on.  Since I posted it late, I extended the time to Friday, April 15th (tomorrow) at 11:50 pm.  I will be posting the winner of the Week 1 giveaway soon.  Also, Birthday Giveaway Week 3 will be posted tomorrow morning and will run the following week until Thursday.  Hopefully, that made some sense.

In case it didn't, here's a summery:
  • Dewey's Readathon was awesome!
  • Thank you everyone for the birthday wishes!
  • Birthday Giveaway Week 2 ends tomorrow night (April 15th) at 11:59 pm EST
  • Birthday Giveaway Week 1 winner will be posted shortly.
  • Birthday Giveaway Week 3 will be up tomorrow morning

Hope everyone is having a great week and enjoying lots of reading.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Dewey's 24 hour Readathon


Good morning everyone!  It is that time.  Time for the 24 hour READATHON!  I am excited to begin.  20 minutes in, and I am still doing some housekeeping.  I will attempt to post throughout the day as I am reading.  I am also setting aside some time to work on some blog posts for next week.  Follow my progress here as well as on Twitter (@hannahmatkins).  You can find more info at the official site.  But, here is my Introductory Meme!

1)Where are you reading from today?
I am reading from the wonderful southern state of Tennessee.

2)Three random facts about me…
I am a nurse who works nights.  So a bit sluggish this morning.  :)
I absolutely love TV shows such as Bones and Criminal Minds.  A bit obsessive - I've seen all the episodes! 
I love to cook, especially baking bread!

3)How many books do you have in your TBR pile for the next 24 hours?
As I have been whining to my sister, I slept all through yesterday (after three nights of work).  So I missed my planning day!  So I don't have a plan as of right now.  Working on some housekeeping stuff, then my plan, then reading.  :)  Don't you love it.  I'm planning on planning.  :)

4)Do you have any goals for the read-a-thon (i.e. number of books, number of pages, number of hours, or number of comments on blogs)?
I don't have any goals yet except to have fun.  A bit stressed right now, so I am focusing on the fun part before I goal it up.

5)If you’re a veteran read-a-thoner, any advice for people doing this for the first time?
Breaks!  Have fun!  Take naps if needed!  Have fun!  Join me on Twitter.  It's an excellent medium for cheerleading and encouragement.   and have fun!

Anyone else doing the Readathon?  I will be back in a bit! 

Birthday Giveaway Week 2

And now it's week 2 in my celebration of my birthday!  My first giveaway is now closed.  And I am getting geared up for this next giveaway.  This week, I went with some awesome books that have topped my favorites for this year.  Everybody ready?

Drum roll.........

The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting (because it's so good that I have to give it away twice!)

Desires of the Dead
The Liar Society by Lisa and Laura Roecker
These are some awesome books, and I am so excited to give away a copy to someone.  Like last week, this giveaway is open international (as long as The Book Depository ships to you), and there is one entry per person.  The contest is open now until Friday, April 15th at midnight EST.  Good luck everyone!



Monday, April 4, 2011

What are you reading Monday? (10)

This week has been a bit of a crazy, exciting week.  I turned 23 (yah for birthdays!).  I also bought myself a HUGE birthday present in the form of my bedroom furniture.  I can't wait, but I'll show you pictures when it arrives.  I also went on a book buying spree, bought some awesome books.  Had a huge discussion with myself regarding whether or not I should be buying books-to-keep in hardback, paperback, or kindle. (Does anyone else feel like they don't actually "own" the book if they buy it on Kindle?  I just feel like I need a nice hard copy.)  I also hit sort of a reading funk where nothing sounded good, so I read a lot of fluff that looked cute.  Not the most memorable way of spending my reading hours, but it was fun nevertheless.  But because of my funk, I have no idea what I will be reading this week.  I know, I should be sticking to my schedule.  But I have so many options and nothing is standing out to me.  But anyway, here's the week's summery.   "It's Monday, What are you reading?" is hosted by One Person's Journey through a World of Books.  "In My Mailbox" is created by Kristi at The Story Siren.  I like to use a mix of the two.  (All links provided are to the book's Goodreads page.)

Books Finished This Week:

New Books:  (all bought at my local Barnes and Noble or Amazon on my Kindle)


Coming Up This Week:
Well, I can't really decide what to read next.  Here's some of my options, so tell me if there's anything wonderful I should pick up right now:
Any thoughts?  Anyone?  Ugh, what to read next is always my least favorite decision.  I get so excited about all these books when I buy them, then it's like I get home and can't decide.  I am grateful though to have so many good books to chose from.  How is everyone else's week looking?  I've visited some IMM since yesterday, and it looks like a great reading week coming up!

Don't forget to visit my Birthday Celebration Giveaway.  It ends on Thursday!  Oh and look at my awesome cake below.  My mom is incredible and tracked down a Baskin Robbins for my favorite kind of cake: ice cream cake!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Review: The Liar Society

The Liar Society
Lisa and Laura Roecker
361 pages
My rating:  5 out of 5 stars

Kate Lowry didn't think dead best friends could send e-mails. But when she gets an e-mail from Grace, she’s not so sure.

To: KateLowry@pemberlybrown.edu
Sent: Sun 9/14 11:59 PM
From: GraceLee@pemberlybrown.edu
Subject: (no subject)

Kate,
I'm here…
sort of.
Find Cameron.
He knows.
I shouldn't be writing.
Don't tell.
They'll hurt you.

Now Kate has no choice but to prove once and for all that Grace’s death was more than just a tragic accident. But secrets haunt the halls of her elite private school. Secrets people will do anything to protect. Even if it means getting rid of the girl trying to solve a murder...

My Thoughts: 
Can I just say that Lisa and Laura Roecker are my new favorite people?  No seriously.  I stumbled upon them from The Story Siren and the Roecker's Blog Tour of Awesome.  From there I became a serious stalker and visited almost every stop on the tour.  They have an incredibly hilarious blog, and I had their book on the top of my list of books to buy when I went on a spree.  (I think their book was the reason I went on a spree.)  Basically, they are awesome and cool and hilarious, and I want to be just like them when I grow up!


And believe me when I say that their awesomeness is simply overflowing in their novel as well.  This is the debut novel for Lisa and Laura Roecker.  It's a young adult mystery that incorporates secrets, preppy high schools, Latin sayings, and emails from dead people.  It was intriguing, mysterious, and I couldn't put it down after the first page.


The main character is Kate (no spoiler there, read the summery above).  I loved Kate.  She was snarky and smart, but she had just enough confusion and "lostness" to make her loveable and relateable.  She is recovering from the death of her best friend, and she is struggling so much more because she does not understand what is going on at her school.  And the person she would always turn to in the past was gone.  What do you do when those who help guide you aren't there?  How do you travel without your compass?  Those were all questions that Kate struggled with, and I was right there with her in the novel.  The Roecker sisters wrote this character exceptionally well, and I certainly imagined myself saying those exact things in high school when I was figuring out who I was.


Probably the only thing I found wrong with the book:  the stupid parents.  Now, I know that the parents had a purpose in the plot of the novel, and I know that they had to be there and be just as stupid.  But I wanted to kick some serious adult parental butt.  (warning: rant forthcoming)  But seriously!  At one point Kate's dad is like: "We want our old Kate back.  You have to make this better.  Fix this."  Ok, really?  Her BEST FRIEND DIED.  Things will never go back to the way they were.  And how insensitive is it put all the work on a teenager who can't deal with everything that has happened?!  And they go on and on about how she's obsessed with Grace's death.  I mean, really??  Of course she's obsessed.  Again, I repeat her best friend died!  You don't just get over that.  That's a major life changer that even in several years will be a hard topic.  Let's face it: her situation sucks.  How painful to have your best friend die, and you can't even go through all the details to process what happened.  Stupid parents did not make it better.  In fact, they only made it worse as they were NO help whatsoever.  (ok, rant over now)


And even though the parents were seriously annoying and totally pissed me off, I thought they were wonderfully well written and added a great element to the book.  I love the way that the Roecker sisters write about them from Kate's point of view.  They do this funny thing where they have Kate's actual response and then her thought response.  It made it super humorous, and I laughed out loud many times.  I stayed up all night reading this book, and believe me, my dog was not happy to be woken up by my giggling.


Overall, I loved this book!  It was incredible.  Very well written, the mystery was mysterious and full of twists that I didn't see, and the characters were loveable, hateable, and jumped out from the pages.  Lisa and Laura Roecker took a hard topic (the death of a friend) and wrote an excellent commentary on dealing.  They added mystery, intrigue, humor, snark, and pink hair to it to push it beyond good to incredibly awesome.  Their debut novel blew me away, and I can't wait for them to hurry up and write some more.  I would recommend it this most definitely to all young adult fiction fans.  Head to Barnes and Noble, Borders, (or Amazon for a loser town like mine that does not stock it) and buy a copy because this will be one you will want to keep.  I know I will be rereading it at least once in anticipation of the next installment. 

Book Happenings: Cornicopia of Dystopia



Hey everyone.  As I was woke up obsenely early by my dog (who thinks he's my 0630 am alarm clock, every morning), I spent some time browsing through some great blog posts.  I wanted to remind you guys about this awesome event and share some of my favorite posts so far.

The Cornicopia of Dystopia is hosted by A Tapestry of Words and The Bookish Type and features several upcoming dystopias that are being released.  The event runs from March 21st to April 18th.  There are like 17 blogs participating, and everything I've read so far looks incredible!  They have author interviews, giveaways, reviews, etc.  I have greatly been enjoying getting to know these authors as they share about their upcoming books.

Some of my favorite posts so far:
Author interview Megan McCafferty (Bumped) - Books are a Girl's Best Friend
Author interview: Kate Kacvinsky (Awaken) - Musings of a YA Reader

The entire schedule can be viewed here.  And now that I've shared with you, I'm going to get lost in the world of dystopia again.  Enjoy!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Monthly Summery: March 2011


March was a bit of a crazy month for me.  It snowed and reached 75 degrees.  I had my first non-spring break, as I'm now out of school.  I worked lots of overtime.  And I got re-excited about reading.  It was a good month.

Books Read:
  • Then Comes Seduction (Huxtable Quintet, 2) - Mary Balogh
  • Wish - Alexandra Bullen
  • Dreaming Anastasia (Dreaming Anastasia, 1) - Joy Preble
  • Prom and Prejudice - Elizabeth Eulberg
  • How to Marry a Millionaire Vampire (Love at Stake, 1) - Kerrelyn Sparks
  • Wicked Lovely (Wicked Lovely, 1) - Melissa Marr
  • The Body Finder (Body Finder, 1) - Kimberly Derting
  • Baltimore Blues (Tess Monaghan, 1) - Laura Lippman
  • The Liar Society (Liar Society, 1) - Laura and Lisa Roecker
  • Little Women - Louisa May Alcott
  • Delirious - Daniel Palmer
  • Anna and the French Kiss - Stephanie Perkins
  • Simply Irresistible (Chinooks Hockey Team, 1) - Rachel Gibson
March Books:13

Total Books Read in 2011:26
100+ Book Reading Challenge: 26/100
Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge: 26/62
Support Your Local Library Challenge: 7/50
Ebook Reading Challenge: 13/20
2011 Debut Author Challenge: 1/12
Three Rs Challenge: 7/13
(Personal) 1001 Books Reading Challenge: 2/17

How was everyone else's March?  Looking forward to April?  I'm planning on an awesome month.  
probably chewing on something he's not supposed to.  But isn't he cute?  :)

Friday, April 1, 2011

Happy Birthday to Me!

Well, everyone.  It's my big day!  My birthday!  And, as a celebration of my wonderful day, I am hosting a couple of giveaways, one of which is starting today.  I am giving away, drum roll please......

Prom and Prejudice by Elizabeth Eulberg
One of the best books I've read in a long time!
 Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Because everybody needs a copy of this classic, my all time favorite novel

The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting
My favorite read of this year!
So as my present to you, three of my favorite books.  Simply fill out the form below to enter.  It is open internationally (to all countries shipped to by The Book Depository).  One entry per person.  The winner will have three days to reply by email with his/her address so I can send the books out.  The contest will run from today (Friday, April 1st) to Thursday, April 7th at midnight.  Good luck everyone!



Thursday, March 31, 2011

News


So as I hinted earlier, I have some news to announce.  I thought I'd give you a sneak peek, since I'm so excited and can't wait until tomorrow to announce it.    See April is a wonderful month.  Spring is unfolding, school is beginning to finish, and......  it's a month to celebrate ME.  April is my birthday month, and I am so happy to have it here.  I'm big on holidays, and so my birthday is something special to me.  I can't help it.  Every time I get something in the mail (even if it's a coupon from a store saying Happy Birthday), I get really excited.  It makes me feel special.  And, I want to share that excitement with YOU.  Think of it as my way to share my birthday cake virtually with you (and in the best form of presents - books).  This April, I will be hosting a different giveaway with presents for you each week.  I'm going to be featuring some of my favorite books.  The giveaways will run Friday to Friday, and I'll try to announce winners within a couple of days of the closing date.  The first one will start tomorrow, which is my birthday.  (No it's not a joke.  No I don't celebrate April Fool's Day.  Yes, I was born on April 1st.  I only celebrate my birthday.  Moving on....)  So come back tomorrow to enter for the first one!

So.. a sneak peek:
13 (at least, I may add a couple more) books
from 9 authors
open internationally
divided into five different giveaways
including both young adult and adult fiction
all hand-picked from my favorite books
celebrating my birthday!

See, aren't you excited?  I know I am.  Since there will be several in a row, I am only going to do one entry per person.  Being a follower won't be required, but is always appreciated.  So, whose in?  Come back tomorrow to enter the first giveaway!

P.S. I wanted to change the blog into birthday mode, but I'm not exactly sure that this is what I want.  What do you guys think?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Review: Little Women

Little Women
Louisa May Alcott
449 pages
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Little Women is the heartwarming story of the March family that has thrilled generations of readers. It is the story of four sisters--Jo, Meg, Amy and Beth-- and of the courage, humor and ingenuity they display to survive poverty and the absence of their father during the Civil War.








My Thoughts:
So I couldn't find a summery that I was happy with, so I ended up with the short one.  But in the spirit of being realistic, I'm not sure there is anyone who does not know the basic story of Little Women.  That being said, it's incredibly hard to sit down and write a review of a classic such as Little Women.   I mean, what am I going to say: eh, I didn't think it was that good of a story.  It's a classic.  No matter what I say, it will still be a classic.  So instead of writing a review of sorts, I decided to simply comment on my thoughts as sort of a discussion.  If you have never read Little Women, seen the movie, and have no idea what the story consists of, I would probably advise you not to continue reading, as this will probably have "spoilers."  Those who know the story, I am not going to talk about anything that you don't already know.

When I was a child, I read the book Eight Cousins by Louisa May Alcott.  I think it's funny that I read the "sequels" and not the original Little Women.  But from what I remember, the writing was basically the same.  Alcott writes in a writer-to-reader way, as though you are sitting in the same room listening to her tell a story.  It's more informal than I'm used to, but it still made for a good story.

As far as the novel goes, I love the story of Little Women.  It's a heartwarming story of four sisters and how they grow up.  There's Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy.  Each one distinctly different.    I love how each one develops in their differences and yet still remain friends.   I enjoyed reading about Meg, as she gets married and raises her family in "poverty" and yet finds happiness.  Jo, who is loosely based on Alcott herself, tries to find her authorship.  Beth, who is a homebody, aids the poor.  And Amy, always striving for to be one of society, ends up exactly where she wanted and yet in a place she never imagined.

The qualms that most people come up with regarding Little Women generally fall into three categories:  A) Beth dying, B) Jo getting married, and C) Amy ending up with Laurie.  I can't say much about Beth.  Honestly, there was such foreshadowing about her death - i.e. she never did anything but be sick and take care of the house.  I don't know, I just expected it.

Secondly, Jo getting married.  I've read several reviews about how Jo gave up her dream to be a slave to her husband, etc.  It just did not seem that way to me.  First of all, she gave up writing long before she fell in love with Fredrick.  I mean, she moved back home (doing what, I don't know.  Sorry, sometimes they just don't seem to do anything.  It's weird for me, since I've worked since I was 16.) and only wrote for her family.  But secondly, Jo never really wrote solely for writing sake.  She always was doing something else and writing in her spare time.  It just seemed to me that she was continuing on in her same path: living her life and writing as a "hobby." 

Finally, I never thought Jo should end up with Laurie.  They were too similar.  They seemed more like brother and sister.  Plus, I think that the book did way more justice to the Laurie/Amy relationship that the movie did.  I just remember the movie being like... Jo says no to Laurie.  Laurie goes to Europe.  Oh, hi Amy!  Then they get married.  It just seemed so random.  But in the book, I feel like there was so much more development that I missed in the movie.  And the development made the Laurie/Amy relationship make so much more sense.  (P.S. I think Alcott could have done without some of the Amy's the second choice insider comments.  But minus that, I enjoyed the Laurie/Amy thing way more in the book.)  Amy was Laurie's way of getting over Jo.  She was one of the only ones who understood, and yet she wouldn't let him get by with just being a sad person all the time.  She kicked him into shape.  She was the friend he needed, and he realized that she was his person.  The one he needed.  I thought it was cute.  And perhaps, my opinion is unpopular, but I stand by it.  I like Amy and Laurie together.


So there are my few thoughts on Little Women.  Honestly, I think everybody should read it, because it is a classic.  It's like Wuthering Heights, Great Expectations, and The Scarlet Letter.  It should just be read.  It reminds me of the all-American tale.  I've never read Great Expectations (it's on my list, I promise).  But I can say that Little Women, though a little slower than some books I'm used to, isn't that hard of a read.  So if you are feeling educational one day, you might think about picking it up.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Review: Delirious

Delirious
Daniel Palmer
371 pages
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

One day, Charlie Giles is an up-and-coming electronics superstar. The next, he's a prime homicide suspect as his former employers are picked off one by one. Charlie watches his life unravel as his company and inventions are wrenched from his control, and his family is decimated. With nowhere else to turn, he enlists his schizophrenic brother to uncover the dark family secrets that lie at the heart of the unfolding terror. "Delirious" is a mind-bending story where the line between what is real and what is imagined twists and turns...an addictive literary puzzle that every reader will want to solve.



My Thoughts:
I received this novel from a Twitter contest that I won.  The author sent it to me, signed and everything!  Technically, it’s my first ARC.  I was really excited to read it.

This novel is Daniel Palmer’s fictional debut.  There’s a blurb on the back of my ARC that speaks of a former life of e-commerce and a musician.  It was so fun to have known that because it made the book even more interesting, as I knew that the author had experience in the character’s background - adding authenticity.  I’ve never really read a book as a “debut novel” expecting less or something.  So I don’t know if others do, but every if you do, this novel surpassed my greatest expectations.  It was an incredible mystery and thriller, and it definitely did not show any flaws from a newbie.

It took me a bit to get into the novel, simply because it is different from some of my latest reads.  But once I got past, oh page 15 or 20, I could not stop reading.  It’s an adult thriller/mystery type.  Different than my recent Kathy Reichs novels, the mystery revolves around the main character.  And even the reader has no clue as to what is going on.  Though the story is not told in first person, it revolves mostly around the main character, Charlie, and it does not go outside of what he knows.  (As opposed to those novels that go from different viewpoints, both the “good side” and the “bad side;” and the reader knows stuff the characters don’t.)  I certainly did not figure it out.

Basically, this novel is about Charlie.  Mental illness runs in his family, and as several different (very odd) things happen in his life, he begins to question his sanity - wondering if what he experienced was real or simply a part of an unraveling mind.  The plot has many twists and turns.  I was definitely intrigued throughout the whole novel.

Both the characters Charlie and Joe (his brother) are well written.  You truly get a feel for the person of Charlie, as well as Joe.  But the technical talk of Charlie’s business, internet/computer stuff, was not overwhelming.  I was greatly impressed (and relieved) to find that I wasn’t confused and did not have to have things explained when it came to the computer speech.  But I did not feel like it was written for a kindergartener either.  It was very appropriate and well written.

My favorite character happened to be Dr. Rachel Evans.  She is Charlie’s brother’s psychologist.  She reminded me a bit of myself, and she was the character that I most related to.  But I loved the medical involvement in the story (she talks a lot about psychology, mental illnesses, and you see some of how the mental health “industry” works).  Since I’m a nurse, I’ve been the treat-er (having completed some clinicals at a psychiatric hospital), and I had never thought about how things seemed to patients.  Since Charlie’s brother Joe has schizophrenia, Rachel is the “expert opinion” to give light to the psychological possibilities.  It adds another intriguing element to the book.

Ultimately, I loved this novel.  It was an excellent read, and I cannot wait to see what else Daniel Palmer will write.  It took me a bit of time to read it, only because my time was limited due to overtime and such.  But even at work, I was pondering the novel and could not get it out of my head.  I honestly cannot think of any negative factors to fuss about - except that I did not want it to end.  I thought it was totally awesome.  I definitely would recommend it to any mystery lovers.  Well, unless you abhor mysteries, but I would recommend it to everyone.  I think of very few people who would not enjoy this incredible novel.  I know I will definitely be passing it on to all of my family members.
 

Monday, March 28, 2011

What are you reading Monday? (9)

This week was a bit of an odd week.  I read all week, but as my internet was super slow, I ended up working on my blog on Pages instead of actually on the blog.  I'm hoping the internet shapes up this week, so I can post all of those reviews I've written.  I only received a couple of books this week, but still super exciting, as they were books I wanted!  "It's Monday, What are you reading?" is hosted by One Person's Journey through a World of Books.  "In My Mailbox" is created by Kristi at The Story Siren.  I like to use a mix of the two.  (All links provided are to the book's Goodreads page.)

Books Finished This Week:
  • Delirious - Daniel Palmer
  • Anna and the French Kiss - Stephanie Perkins
New Books:





From the wonderful April at Good Books and Good Wine sent me the ARCs of Wither by Lauren DeStefano and The Dark and Hollow Places by Carrie Ryan.  I've heard wonderful things about both books, so I can't wait to get to reading them.

Coming Up This Week:

  • Powerless: The Synthesis - Jason Letts
  • Solid - Shelley Workinger
  • The Dark Divine - Bree Despain
  • The Color Purple - Alice Walker
I guess I technically had a slow week of reading, as I only read two books.  But they were awesome books.  I worked overtime this week, so the week felt jam-packed to me.  I have a bit of a slow week coming up with an awesome weekend happening.  Stay tuned for some exciting news! 

How did everyone's week go?  Any good books I should know about?  Can't wait to see what you guys got into this week.

Review: Baltimore Blues

Baltimore Blues
Laura Lippman
336 pages
My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

In a city where someone is murdered almost every day, attorney Michael Abramowitz's death should be just another statistic. But the slain lawyer's notoriety—and his taste for illicit midday trysts—makes the case front-page news in every local paper except the Star, which crashed and burned before Abramowitz did.
A former Star reporter who knows every inch of this town—from historic Fort McHenry to the crumbling projects of Cherry Hill—now-unemployed journalist Tess Monaghan also knows the primary suspect: cuckolded fiancĂ© Darryl "Rock" Paxton. The time is ripe for a career move, so when rowing buddy Rock wants to hire her to do some unorthodox snooping to help clear his name, Tess agrees. But there are lethal secrets hiding in the Charm City shadows. And Tess's own name could end up on the ever-expanding list of Baltimore dead.

My Thoughts:
I received this recommendation from a friend Twitter recently.  Because it was $0.99 on Amazon, I simply could not resist buying it.  I had read Laura Lippman once before, and I loved her I'd Know You Anywhere.  When I found out that she wrote a long series, I had to check it out!

This novel is the first in the Tess Monaghan series.  It is set in Baltimore (duh), which I actually have never visited.  I read some reviews that mentioned that Lippman has lived in Baltimore, which I think is cool.  Perhaps if I had been to Baltimore, I would have gotten more of the culture references.  I got a little weary of the Baltimore landmark inserts, mainly because I just felt a little lost.  It reminded me of reading The Lord of the Rings when I had to keep going back to the front of the book to see the map.  Maybe a personal pet peeve, but I was a little annoyed.

I have to say that my overall feeling for this novel was “eh.”  Maybe I had my hopes too high because I had read her awesome new release.  But I simply was not impressed with the mystery.  I kept reading because I wanted to know the answers, but I did not get excited until the very end. 
I remember thinking after everything was set up “that’s all?  That’s what the whole book is about?”  And there were more details to come and everything, but I felt that more effort was made to set up the background of the series than the mystery of this first novel.  I just thought that the potential for the mystery was there, but it was not explored to full capacity.  I wasn't sure how everything fit together, and parts of the mystery still do not make complete sense to me.  There was not a part that explained everything and how it fit together. 

Tess was simply not a character I could like in this novel.  Perhaps Lippman is setting up the background for the next novels, but I sorta disliked her.  She was lazy and annoying.  And I’m not sure how smoking pot and continually letting an ex use her makes her lovable.  I just did not get it.  I can see how her character has room for improvement, so hopefully in the next books she will improve.

But I have to say that my favorite characters were all of the supporting characters.  I loved how quirky everyone was.  It reminded me of Stephanie Plum and her pack.  I loved the community Lippman created.  Everyone had a distinct personality, and the surrounding characters provided several of the laughs I enjoyed.

Overall, I liked the novel, but it had too many pet peeves of mine to make it a favorite.  I am looking forward to reading the next book in the series, as I think it has lots of potential for improve.  If you aren’t like me, and don’t tend to find pet peeves in novels, you may like it.  I’d recommend it really for Lippman fans right now.  Perhaps once I read the second book, I’ll have more to say.  I'm hoping it's one of the those books that I will like more in retrospect.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Spring Reading Thing 2011

Good evening, peeps.  (well, it's evening when I'm working on this post.)  One of the things I love about the book blog community is how we will take whatever excuse available to have a challenge and encourage each other in reading.  That being said, Fall Into Reading (the vall version of this event) was my favorite challenge of last year.  So when Callapidder Days decided to host Spring Reading Thing again this year, I was all "HECK YES!"

Basically Spring Reading Thing is an event that runs the length of spring and in which we challenge ourselves to push a little more.  Doesn't matter what the challenge is, just something personal for us to attempt to achieve.  Last fall, I challenged myself to read 50 books.  I fell far short, but I learned a lot about my reading habits. So as my overall goal for this year is to read at least 100 books, I thought that I should make my goals in the Spring Reading Thing to help me accomplish my goals.  I so far have read 22 books, a little behind, but completely accomplishable.  I have decided to challenge myself to get a little ahead and read 35 books during the Spring Reading Thing.  Either way, it’s getting to be beautiful outside, so wonderful porch reading weather.  I’ve have complied a list of some books I want to get read in the next couple of weeks.  Figured I get these read and then have several “slots” for fun, spontaneous reading.
  1.  Suite Francaise - Irene Nemirovsky
  2.  Under the SKin - Michel Faber
  3.  Mansfield Park - Jane Austen
  4.  The Color Purple - Alice Walker
  5.  Matched - Ally Condie
  6.  Anna and the French Kiss - Stephanie Perkins
  7.  Firelight - Sophie Jordan
  8.  The Synthesis - Jason Letts
  9.  The Dark Divine - Bree Despain
  10.  Portal - Imogen Rose
  11.  Mockingjay - Suzanne Collins
  12.  Delirious - Daniel Palmer
  13.  The Saphire Talsimen -Brenda Pandos
  14.  Solid - Shelley Workinger
  15.  The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo - Stieg Larsson
Anybody else participating in Spring Reading Thing?  What are your reading goals for this spring?  I'm so glad that spring is finally here, and I believe I have some awesome books set up to read this spring.  What about you?

Review: The Body Finder

The Body Finder
Kimberly Derting
366 pages
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Violet Ambrose is grappling with two major issues: Jay Heaton and her morbid secret ability. While the sixteen-year-old is confused by her new feelings for her best friend since childhood, she is more disturbed by her "power" to sense dead bodies—or at least those that have been murdered. Since she was a little girl, she has felt the echoes the dead leave behind in the world . . . and the imprints that attach to their killers.
Violet has never considered her strange talent to be a gift; it mostly just led her to find dead birds her cat left for her. But now that a serial killer is terrorizing her small town, and the echoes of the local girls he's claimed haunt her daily, Violet realizes she might be the only person who can stop him.
Despite his fierce protectiveness over her, Jay reluctantly agrees to help Violet find the murderer—and Violet is unnerved by her hope that Jay's intentions are much more than friendly. But even as she's falling intensely in love, Violet is getting closer and closer to discovering a killer . . . and becoming his prey herself.

My Thoughts:
The first thing that drew me to this book was it’s beautiful cover.  The summery only made it sound more interesting.  The wonderful Lori at Pure Imagination insisted that I push this book to the top of my to-read list, and I have to say that I was sooo appreciative.  It’s one of the best young adult novels that I’ve read in a long while, if not forever.  Ms. Derting has written an incredible story with superb writing and insight into teenage world.

I think the thing I love the most about The Body Finder is how Derting adds mystery to a “normal” teenage life.  Derting writes the mystery within a wonderful fun romance and “real life” type story of Violet and Jay.  At first, I was a little frustrated at how little investigating and pieces to the mystery there were.  But the more I thought about it, the story is written from the point of view of Violet.  Who, as a teenager, would not have been a main part in the investigation.  Derting writes it realistically - Violet only knew as much as her uncle, chief of police, would tell her.  She didn’t give me all the pieces to the puzzle, but it made for more intrigue because I only knew as much as Violet, and therefore didn’t solve the mystery (though I did have a thought of who it might be - felt so smart at the end).  It made for an awesome young adult mystery.

Ok, so as a girl, I’m totally allowed to love romance stories.  So, I’m just going to take ahold of my gender and gush for a bit.  I LOVE the Jay and Violet story.  It was definitely squeal and sigh worthy.  So the basic idea is that Jay and Violet have been best buds since they could walk, but now that they are both teenagers, things are starting to change as they get to know each other as young adults.  I love Violet and her wonderful reactions.  She gets all nervous and blushes and thinks about Jay at the most awkward times.  I love it!  And their mutual friends just make it so much more wonderfully funny.  It reminded me of the fun moments of high school.  I don’t want to say more, but just know that you should go read it, even if it is only for the awesome cute romance that is Jay and Violet.

So here’s a bit of a small tangent.  I was browsing twitter while writing this review, as I have a short attention span.  I definitely found a review of The Body Finder that starts out with: “Move over Edward, here comes Jay Heaton!”  I love it!  So true.  Though I never really crushed on Edward like some people, I’m definitely crushing on Jay.

Anyway, The Body Finder is awesome.  One of the best books I’ve read probably forever.  It was a mystery.  But filled with sweet cute fall-in-love story with a sweet guy who is honest and protective (incredibly swoon-worthy).  Derting wrote an awesome novel that I read in like day and a half - even while working.  So instead of getting sleep, I read and only got four hours of sleep in preparation for my 12 hour shift.  (I giggled in EKG class because of it, and it wasn’t because I was learning about premature ventricular contractions.) It was that good.  I gave it a 5 out of 5 stars, because though it may never become a classic, it was amazing.  And I already reread the ending and parts I liked.   I can’t wait to read Desires of the Dead!  I know that I will continue to read anything that Kimberly Derting writes.  Her ideas are awesome, and her writing thoroughly enforces a great idea and makes it a wonderful novel.  She’s definitely quickly becoming a favorite writer of mine.


More of The Body Finder and Kimberly Derting:
Goodreads: The Body Finder
Goodreads: Kimberly Derting
Review: Pure Imagination
Review: The Book Vixen
Novel Novice: Book of the Month page

What are you reading Monday? (8)

I don't know about you guys, but I had an awesome week of books!  I was on a roll last week with reading, and due to my excitement about new books, it's continued!  I devoured several books this week, and my TBR-I have pile is still growing.  I can't wait to read them and share them with you.   I don't normally get books I didn't buy or get at the library, so excuse my over-the-top excitement.  It was a boring week at work....   "It's Monday, What are you reading?" is hosted by One Person's Journey through a World of Books.  "In My Mailbox" is created by Kristi at The Story Siren.  I like to use a mix of the two.  (All links provided are to the book's Goodreads page.)

Books Finished this Week:
  • The Body Finder (Body Finder, 1) - Kimberly Derting
  • Baltimore Blues (Tess Monaghan, 1) - Laura Lippman
  • The Liar Society (Liar Society, 1) - Lisa and Laura Roeker
  • Little Women - Louisa May Alcott
New Books:
I got an ARC from Shelley Workinger.  I was super excited because I've heard great things about this book.  AND... It was signed!  Even had a note to me.... :)

I was really excited.  It's the first ARC that I've gotten that I haven't won in a contest.  I know, small things right.  It's been a super boring week at work.....

Book Soulmates  is hosting an awesome event each month called "Random Acts of Kindness" or R.A.K.  This week was my first time to receive a R.A.K.
No, I didn't get a kindle, but that would be a very awesome R.A.K.  Instead, I got three new ebooks:
  • Matched (Ally Condie)
  • Firelight (Sophie Jordan)
  • Anna and the French Kiss (Stephanie Perkins)
This R.A.K. was from the wonderful Ivy at Ivy Reads.  I was soooo excited to get these books, as they have been on the top of my TBR list for a long time.  I can't wait to get into them!  She totally made my day, and I can't thank her enough.  Thank you, Ivy!!! 

The neat thing about R.A.K. is that you can still sign up.  March sign ups run throughout March, so you can still participate and do something nice for another blogger.  Sign Ups can be found here.

Coming Up This Week:
  • Delirious - Danie Palmer
  • Powerless: Synthesis - Jason Letts
  • Anna and the French Kiss - Stephanie Perkins
So this week was a week of firsts for me.  It was quite exciting, but I do have a super busy at work coming up, so I tried to not set my goals too high.  Who knows, maybe I'll surprise myself.  What did you guys get this week?  What will you be diving into for the next couple of days?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Review: Deadly Decisions

Deadly Decisions  
Kathy Reichs
395 pages
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Kathy Reichs' forensic anthropologist Tempe Brennan is arguably the best of the current crop of thriller pathologists; her third outing, Deadly Decisions, pits her reconstructive skills against a bunch of Hell's Angels with a taste for ultra-violence. Hardly has she pieced together the jigsaw fragments of identical twins, before she finds herself engaged in identifying the teenage girl whose skull and long bones turned up near the grave of some earlier victims of inter-gang strife. Her sweetheart Ryan is under investigation for corruption; her nephew is sleeping on the sofa and showing an unholy fascination with bikes and bikers; and Tempe is having a series of really bad hair days. In addition to the usual fascinating material about the identification of human bones, Reichs tells us all about the way in which biker gangs have become a serious part of the criminal underworld, a subculture with a taste for mayhem and with rules it is death to break. Tempe is on her usual brittle good form--a woman torn between her cold clinical intelligence and a crusading desire to avenge the helpless that regularly brings her into conflict with more quietly committed colleagues. This is an excellent thriller that combines real intelligence with a radical social anger. --Roz Kaveney 


My Thoughts:
It's been a couple of weeks since I read this book, as I went right into the fourth book in the series before writing reviews.  I was watching Bones on my day off, and it reminded me how much I enjoyed Kathy Reichs' novels.  Deadly Decisions was no different.


I enjoyed this novel quite a bit as it combined mystery, science, and a unique approach to Tempe Brennan.  Different than the other two novels, the story was interesting and unique in it's concept of biker-related crime.  As Tempe's  main go-to guy Ryan was under investigation, she was forced to go through different channels for investigation, making the plot less predictable.


As I have read from other reviewers, the mystery is a bit far-fetched in some of the connections.  But, as I have said before, I always think mysteries are full of random connections.  This novel was a bit different in that though a family member was involved, the outcome of that involvement was not the same as the beginning two.  I'm sure this is making no sense, but without spoilers, just take me on my word that this one is different.


I think the major part of enjoyment for me in this novel is the science that is applied to solving a mystery.  Though others may disagree with me, it's why I love Bones as well.  I find the different approaches to studying the bones interesting, especially as Tempe looks into a twins and systematically searching for bones underground.  Though Ms. Reichs did not add the normal, fun romance intrigue into this novel (as Ryan is busy being under investigation), the novel did not suffer.  I still found it to be fast-paced, generally unpredictable, and scientifically interesting.


I rated this novel a 4 out of 5 because I read the entire thing in one day and I greatly enjoyed it.  After having read several of Reichs' novels, I can happily say that in a couple of years I will want to read them again (having forgotten all of the little details).  I loved Deadly Decisions, and I would rate Kathy Reichs as one of my favorite mystery novelists.  Though it had flaws (hence no 5), I would recommend it to any mystery lover and fan of crime TV shows.  It's like having your own script and backstage pass to any mystery show for you to enjoy at your leisure.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Enquiring Minds Want to Know (16)

Each week Dollycas's Thoughts hosts the meme "Enquiring Minds Want to Know." She posts questions for us to answer each week in order for us bloggers and readers to get to know each other beyond our books.  Check out her's and others answers here.

1. What is your family background regarding nationality?
Though I know a little bit about my family's nationality, it's never been really important in my life.  My dad's heritage is English, and my mom's side of the family came from Norway.  Though, the neat thing about my mom's family is that my grandfather lived in North Dakota, the youngest of 8 (I believe).  He tells stories of digging tunnels to the bar in 7 feet of snow.

2. Have you ever eaten corned beef and cabbage, the traditionally meal of St. Patrick's Day or drank green colored beer?
That would be a negative on both accounts.  I've never actually celebrated St. Patty's Day.  And I'm only celebrating tonight with popcorn and basketball, as I have to work early tomorrow (really early as I don't normally work during the day).

3. St. Patrick's Day is celebrated in many cities in the U.S. and around the world, are there any celebrations happening near you?
You know, honestly I have no idea.  Sorry, I'm a bit too practical tonight with no celebrating.  I'm not even wearing green.  (Totally rocking red and blue in spirit of my Bruins - Belmont Bruins!)
 
Anybody enjoying St. Patty's Day more than me?  Hope you guys have (safe) fun!  Have one for me.  :)