Saturday, July 31, 2010

On My Wishlist #6

On My Wishlist is a fun weekly event hosted by Book Chick City and runs every Saturday. It's where I list all the books I desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming. 

Mitchell James Kaplan - By Fire, By Water
Book Blurb: Kaplan, a screenwriter, sets his debut novel in 15-century Spain, amid the Inquisition, the attempt to unify the kingdoms of Spain under Christian rule, and the voyage of Christopher Columbus to what the seaman expects will be the Indies. The action centers on the historical figure of Luis de Santángel, chancellor to the king of Aragon and a converso, a Jewish convert to Christianity at a time when the Inquisition sought to repress judaizing. Santángel is friend and financier of Columbus, surviving parent of young Gabriel, and more curious than is prudent about his Jewish heritage. While he learns about Judaism in clandestine meetings, a parallel story unfolds, centering on Judith Migdal, a beautiful Jewish woman who learns to become a silversmith in Granada, located in the last part of Spain under Muslim rule. Santángel's attraction to Judith grows, even as the Inquisition closes in and the prospect of another world to the West tantalizes. Kaplan has done remarkable homework on the period and crafted a convincing and complex figure in Santángel in what is a naturally cinematic narrative and a fine debut.

Nerys Jones - Godiva
Book Blurb: The setting is Britain, 1045. The Normans are circling, waiting their turn to pounce on the English throne and wrest it away from the Anglo-Saxon barons who grudgingly support King Edward the Confessor, the childless, half-Norman "Virgin King." The royal court is a hotbed of rumor and political intrigue, and everything hinges on the succession. Godiva, wife of Lovric, Earl of Mercia, one of the most powerful barons—and a major landowner in her own right—is drawn into the court machinations. When Edward manipulates their son into a treasonable act and makes him a pawn in his power play, Godiva's ferocious maternal instincts rise to the fore. As the courtly scheming undermines Godiva's hitherto solid marriage and drives her to despair and confusion, the stage is set for a story so powerful its impact has survived for a thousand years. This tale of an independent, resourceful, and intelligent noblewoman tested to the limits of her endurance illuminates one of the great myths of British history.

Julie Carobini - Chocolate Beach
Book Blurb Brianna Stone has an idyllic life. She lives in a comfortable beach home in Ventura, Calif., with her handsome, loving husband, Douglas, and improbably mature 13-year-old son, Nathan. She loves her part-time job leading coastal bus tours and has a lifelong best friend with whom she can talk about everything while eating brownies on the beach. Unfortunately, first-time author Carobini never quite manages to give Brianna any real problems, and, as such, this novel's plot is wispy. Perplexingly, despite her happiness and groundedness, Brianna decides one day, based purely on the comments of an unpleasant acquaintance, that her life might need a makeover. She fears, for reasons that never actually compel the reader, that her husband is bored and wants a more stylish home and wife. While Carobini's descriptions of events and characters are often witty and engaging, the series of misunderstandings that she substitutes for actual problems give the novel a contrived feel. Interestingly, Brianna does have some underlying issues, including a difficult childhood and infertility, but these go largely unexplored. Brianna and most of the people in her life are Christians, and at the end, Brianna realizes many of her problems stem from having neglected God. While this superficiality may disappoint some readers, those looking for a light, occasionally witty beach read may find that it hits the spot.

Have You Ever?

Have you ever been reading a book and then you find yourself having a dream about a place you read about? Well that happened to me last night. I'm reading an older Silhouette Desire called Bound By The Baby and it starts out in Atlantic City, NJ. I actually bought it for that reason. I love Atlantic City. I love the pretty lights from the casinos and the boardwalk and the shops at the Pier @ Caesars. I haven't been there in several years and I miss it terribly.

Atlantic City Boardwalk By Mistress Of The Dark
Last night I was dreaming about going to one of the casinos to a Mexican restaurant. This is the second time I've had a dream like this and to the best of my knowledge there are no Mexican restaurants in any of the casinos. I was also dreaming about my grandma, and that makes me sad too, because she's been gone now for two years.

Thoughts of Atlantic City have been with me all day, which is kind of depressing me, because even though I have a reliable car now, I have a car payment and other bills that are going to keep me from going anywhere other than a day trip. So the only way I can visit Atlantic City is in a book.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Book Review: Thirty Day Affair

Author: Maureen Child
Title: Thirty Day Affair
Publisher: Silhouette Desire
Publish Date: March 2007
Rating: 5 Stars
Book Blurb: Hotel Empire Dominant Personality Trait: Always gets what he wants.
When grumpy, rich and gorgeous Nathan Barrister arrives at the Lake Tahoe lodge, all he can think about is how soon he can leave. His one-month commitment feels like solitary confinement— until a snowstorm traps him with lovely Keira Sanders. Suddenly a thirty-day affair sounds like just the thing to pass the time—if Keira agrees to his no-ties arrangement.

Review: There's a reason why I never hesitate to pick up a book by Maureen Child, her books always have strong characters. This one was no exception. Nathan was the typical alpha male but he wasn't a match for Keira.

Nathan is nothing short of a curmudgeon, but Keira manages to chip away at his defenses, by annoying the hell out of him and throwing his well ordered life into chaos.

Sure the characters are in an unbelievable situation, but you really can't help but loving them, especially Nathan, who is so scheduled in his life that he probably visits the bathroom at designated times.

On the opposite end is Keira, her parents died and she raised her sister, sacrificing her life to make sure her sister had advantages. The good thing is that though you feel a slight woo is me for Keira, she doesn't inspire pity, especially as she's the mayor of Hunter's Landing.

The stuck in a snowstorm scenario may be old, but it works so beautifully here. After all, who would mind being stuck in a snow storm with a hunky millionaire? I know I sure wouldn't mind.

I think Keira is probably one of the best heroines I've seen in the Desire line. I love how she really keeps Nathan in his place, even when he's being his rudest. She doesn't take no for an answer, except when Nathan uses his head instead of his heart, but you'll have to read the book to understand that part.

Maureen Child has definitely created another wonderful story. Desires are all modern day fairy tales and this is one you can really lose yourself in.

Book Blogger Hop and Follow Me Friday

Book Blogger Hop

The Hop is Hosted By Jennifer @ Crazy For Books.

Each week she poses a get to know each other better question. This week's question is: Who is your favorite new-to-you author so far this year? For me it would be Jen Lancaster. I've wanted to read her books for awhile, but I didn't get around to buying one until this spring and once I started reading, I was hooked. Her memoirs are so funny.

Hosted by Parajunkee

Now onto some of the stuff I've been doing this week, for anyone new who is stopping by via these two features

Sandra Dark - Old Flames
Linda Randall Wisdom - In Memory's Shadow
Gareth Roberts - I Am A Dalek
Allie Sager - Forgive Yourself
V.C. Andrews - Heavenstone Secrets
Magali - Vanishing Bride
Amber Riley - Flash Of A Firefly

Memes Played
It's Monday! What Are You Reading
Waiting On Wednesday
Friday Finds

Author Interviews
Amber Riley

Friday Finds

Another fun book meme care of Should Be Reading.

What great books did you hear about / discover this past week?

So many books! So little time!

Julie Garwood - Ransom

Julie Garwood has returned to her original calling in the romance genre with her phenomenal new novel, Ransom, her best yet. Garwood is at the top of her form with this twisting tale of passion and deceit. When their father was murdered by Baron Alford, sisters Christen and Gillian were small children — but as the years pass, and the young girls grow to adulthood, love and vengeance will grow with them. A strong return to the medieval historical romance for which Julie Garwood is so beloved, Ransom is worth any price!

Fiona Mountain - Lady Of The Butterflies

They say I'm mad and perhaps it's true.
It is well known that lust brings madness and desperation and ruin. But upon my oath, I never meant any harm. All I wanted was to be happy, to love and to be loved in return, and for my life to count for something.
That is not madness, is it?

So begins the story of Eleanor Glanville, the beautiful daughter of a seventeenth-century Puritan nobleman whose unconventional passions scandalized society. When butterflies were believed to be the souls of the dead, Eleanor's scientific study of them made her little better than a witch. But her life-set against a backdrop of war, betrayal, and sexual obsession-was that of a woman far ahead of her time

Ellen Schreiber - Vampire Kisses: The Beginning

A new guy in town.

Rumors of vampires.

Dangerous first love.

This is where it all begins. . . .

The mansion on top of Benson Hill has stood empty for years. But one day it seems to be occupied, and its mysterious, handsome inhabitant Alexander Sterling becomes the source of much talk around town. Raven, a vampire-obsessed Goth-girl who has always considered herself an outsider in "Dullsville," is determined to uncover the truth surrounding the secretive Alexander. As she gets to know him, and their spark intensifies, Raven finds herself in some unanticipated situations. Can Alexander make her lifelong dream come true? But love always has its complications—especially when it can only be awakened at nightfall.

The first three books in Ellen Schreiber's bestselling Vampire Kisses series capture the thrill of a most unusual romance.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Book Review: Old Flames

Author: Sandra Dark
Title: Old Flames
Publisher: Silhouette Shadows
Publish Date: March 1996
Rating: 3 Stars
Book Blurb: Have we met before?
Anthropologist Amber Sheridan had come to the centuries-old mansion to unearth a mysterious discovery--not to fall under the spell of the home's handsome owner. But she soon found blue-eyed millionaire James Shockley impossible to resist.
There was a haunting quality to his caresses, an almost desperate yearning in his kisses. It was as if she had searched for him her entire life.
And though Amber knew she could easily succumb to James' passionate pleas, she was determined to uncover the reason why his soul called to hers, and, if she gave in to her desire, where that surrender would lead.

Review: This Shadows had so much potential but it didn't quite do it for me. The book started out much too slow and didn't really get going until about mid-way.

Once it got started it really pulled you in, however if a less dedicated reader would likely cast the book aside in favor of something a little more fast paced.

The problem with the story wasn't in the plot so much as it was in the discovery of what the paranormal thing the characters were dealing was. In this case a curse on the Cavendish family by 7 slaves.  The first part of the book spent too much time with Amber and James getting to know each other and the excavation of the basement of James' mansion, where the bones were discovered.

Once it became known that the seven women where like priestesses, the story picked up and things started to become clearer to the reader. It also made it easier to like James, whereas before you felt weary of him. If you are a patient reader, this book delivers, but if you want something that grabs you from the very start, this might not be your thing.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Book Review: In Memory's Shadow

Author:Linda Randall Wisdom
Title: In Memory's Shadow
Publisher:  Silhouette Intimate Moments
Publish Date: April 1997
Rating: 4 Stars
Book Blurb: Sam Barkley had promised to protect her. But Keely Harper was beginning to think she would never be safe again. Since she'd returned to Echo Ridge, the town of her birth, she'd been plagued by nightmares - not to mention that her new neighbors all looked at her strangely.

Keely had been orphaned at five, and left with no memory of her early life. She'd come to Echo Ridge hoping to fill in some of the gaps, yet all she'd found were more questions. Her handsome lover seemed to know something he wasn't telling her. Could she trust the safety she felt in Sam's warm embrace? Or would her fragile serenity be destroyed by the devastating secret of her past?

Review: This was really a great suspenseful read. You learn early on that Keely was a witness to her parents' murders, but shortly after the trial that put the murderer away, she became ill and lost the memory of that night.

Flash forward 20+ years and Keely and her daughter are returning to Echo Ridge. But she's getting clues via nightmares as to what happened, only she's not the only one that knows she's regaining her memory. Someone connected with the crime knows.

Linda created some great characters with this story. I loved that Keely was in her thirties with a teenage daughter, as is Sam. The banter between the kids and the parents is spot on and funny. When the kids start playing matchmaker it is even funnier. It really lightens the story up, which is needed because as things start to happen and Keely starts to remember things get really intense! Oh and you'll never guess who did it.

Book Review: I Am A Dalek

Author:Gareth Roberts
Title: I Am A Dalek
Publisher:  Random House UK
Publish Date: August 2006
Rating: 5 Stars
Book Blurb: Equipped with space suits, golf clubs and a flag, the Doctor and Rose are planning to live it up, Apollo mission-style, on the Moon. But the TARDIS has other plans, landing them instead in a village on the south coast of England; a picture-postcard sort of place where nothing much happens. Until now... An archaeological dig has turned up a Roman mosaic, circa 70 A.D., depicting mythical scenes, grapes - and a Dalek. A few days later a young woman, rushing for work, is knocked over and killed by a bus, then comes back to life. It's not long before all hell breaks loose, and the Doctor and Rose must use all their courage and cunning against an alien enemy - and a not-quite-alien accomplice - who are intent on destroying humanity.
Review: This was a Doctor Who Quick Book with only 104 pages but it really packs a punch in those pages. The more Who books I read, the more I wish they had been made into episodes, as I found a lot of the episodes in 10's era to be pretty lame, even though Tennant was a fantastic doctor.

This story features one Dalek and how it tries to return to life after being sent to earth during the Time War. There's also a little issue of The Dalek Factor which has corrupted some human, DNA turning one call center employee into a wannabe exterminator!

I really liked Rose in this story, and Rose is one of my least favorite of the companions. Her interactions with Kate the human Dalek were really amusing, especially when Kate went from being a ginger to a blonde. Kate commented that she was naturally blonde. I LOL'd at that.

This was a really a fun read, but how could it not be, it is the Doctor!!

Waiting On Wednesday

Waiting On Wednesday is brought to you by Breaking The Spine. This meme spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

Kate Morton - The Distant Hours

To be released November 9, 2010

Here's some info from Kate's blog: "I can't tell you too much about the story just yet, except to say that it's my favourite so far, it takes place in the present and the past, in particular, England during World War Two, and it's full of secrets (of course!). There was a lot of research to do for this story, the sort done with books at my desk in my little office, and also much more exciting research in Other Places: a climb up the SISSINGHURST tower, guided tours of Blitz-torn London, descent into an abandoned Underground station... I shiver just thinking about it!"

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

This Is Torture

Growing up, my family and I made yearly trips to Amish Country. (Lancaster, PA area for those of you not familiar) Its about a 4 hour drive from our home south of Pittsburgh, PA. I still try to get out there when time and money permit, which isn't even once a year now, but I get emails from some of the wonderful businesses in the area.

Today I got a really painful one.

The 30th Annual Bookworm Frolic is coming up in August.

I want to frolic with the bookworms!!

This is cruel, because if I could go, I could eat at my favorite restaurant in the whole world, Good N' Plenty. If you love comfort food, Amish cooking is about as good as it gets!


Now I want some apple butter, fried chicken, shoo fly pie and a couple of books!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Book Review: Forgive Yourself

Author: Allie Sager
Title:  Forgive Yourself
Publisher:  Booksurge LLC
Publish Date: June 2008
Rating: 3 Stars
Book Blurb: Evocative and filled with a rare compassion, Forgive Yourself by new author Allie Sager blends supernatural dreamscapes with affairs of the heart and unforgivable betrayal. Smart and telling, the author enlists a stunning and heartfelt prose to weave one woman’s reluctant love story. On the surface to the outside world, Sammy Logan might appear to be a woman who has it all, but the fact is she is married to a man who has never truly forgiven her for a past she had no control over. Haunted each day by the vivid secret, she turns to Conner Simpson, a man she has always loved—the man without question who makes her feel complete. Caught on the brink, confused, but certainly not alone, Sammy must first forgive herself, make peace with the dark demons of her past and her mystic ancestral visions before she can truly be free.

Review: This book was billed as a romance, but it was anything but romantic. Most of the subject matter was very dark, especially Sammy's relationship with Connor and Connor's relationship with, well, everybody. Love doesn't really play a part in it, at least not real love.

To be honest I found it hard to understand how someone as put together as Sammy could fall for Connor repeatedly when she had so much to lose at home.

Connor and his wife were both detestable characters that used and abused those around them. They definitely got what was coming to them in the end.

But this story was more then just a tale about the relationships of the two couples affected by the affair, there's a spiritual element that adds a twist of weird to it. The ghost of Sammy's grandma Mamie spoke to her, guiding her on the path to forgiveness, and in doing so, helped her discover a love she wasn't sure she had and family she hadn't hoped to ever come in contact with.

I liked how all the characters ended up at one spot together, showing that good will triumph over evil, but more importantly that redemption is always possible.

This was a very quick read, but a good one, for those can can handle the darker nature of the story. There is a lot of abuse and rape, but thankfully the author isn't overly graphic in her writing. Allie Sager definitely is an author to watch.

* This book was provided to me by the author and Bostick Communications for review

There's A Sale @ Eharlequin!

I buy an insane amount of books from the eharlequin website. In fact, I just got my latest batch of books in the mail today.

Well I just found out that there's a sale going on because they revamped the site. That gets a big Squee from me, especially since they have lots of sales going on and you get free shipping on your first order or when you've spent $25.00, oh and I can use my 10% discount too, for taking part in their reading challenge.

It doesn't get better than that! So if you need some books, click my linky and save some money!!! Now if you don't mind, I've got some more books to buy. Damn Harlequin Blaze and Harlequin Teen for having such awesome authors! Makeover Sale - Save 25% on all new releases! Print and eBook. Click here and use coupon code MAKEOVER 7/26-8/2 only.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading

From Sheila @ Book Journey.

This is the meme where we discuss what we've read in the past week and what we plan to read in the coming week.

What I read last week
V.C. Andrews - Heavenstone Secrets
Magali - Vanishing Bride
Amber Riley - Flash Of A Firefly
Amanda Stevens - Matters Of Seduction
Karen Foley - Hold On To The Nights
Barbara McMahon - Accidentally The Sheikh's Wife

What I plan to read this week
I plan to finish Allie Sager's Forgive Yourself. I'm still working at tackling a huge pile of ancient Harlequins as well as some Nora Roberts books given to me by a friend. That was how I got roped into reading the V.C. Andrews book. I also need to get to Shadow Cay which was on my list last week.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Book Review: Heavenstone Secrets

Author: V.C. Andrews (Ghost Writer)
Title: Heavenstone Secrets
Publisher:  Pocket Star
Publish Date: December 2009
Rating: 1 Stars

The Heavenstone sisters live with their mother and father in a grand old mansion in bluegrass Kentucky. Semantha, the younger and prettier one, is afraid of so many things— darkness, strange noises, mysterious whispers in the night. But nothing frightens her more than her sister, Cassie. She is older and wiser, and always telling Semantha what to do, what to wear, and how to behave around those wicked boys at school. Semantha has her eye on one special guy—but Cassie has other plans for her. In the Heavenstone house, big sister knows best.


When tragedy strikes like a lightning bolt from heaven, Semantha’s life becomes a living hell. Under Cassie’s constant, watchful eye, she feels like a prisoner—a helpless pawn in her sister’s cruel game. When Cassie begins wearing their mother’s clothes and vying for their father’s affections, Semantha realizes she must bring their twisted sibling rivalry to an end . . . before a new generation is born.

Review: Sometimes you read a book even though it is bad because something about it interests you. With Heavenstone's Secrets this isn't the case. I read the whole thing because it was like a train wreck that I couldn't stop looking at.

V.C. Andrews books weren't the best stories, but once you started them you couldn't seem to put them down. You wanted to know what was next. The ghost writer who has been V.C. Andrews since she passed away in 1986, is getting sloppy. This story was weird, but there was nothing to explain away the weirdness.

Cassie wanted to be her mother and she slowly does things to make that happen, except for sleeping with her father. In a real V.C. Andrews novel, that probably would have happened. Instead she takes control of her little sister, Semantha's (what kind of name is that anyway) life and makes it miserable. But nowhere in the story does the writer explain why she wants to be Mama Heavenstone.

Then there is Semantha. Oye, the character was so wimpy, she made me want to scream. Cassie was only 2 years older than she was. I can't see any girl that was in her teens taking the orders Cassie was giving without a rip roaring fight, respectable family or not.

The other thing that bugged me were the parents. They even let Cassie boss them around. Hell, the dad's followed his daughter so blindly that his wife ended up DEAD! (Not saying just have to read the book and share in my pain) .

I will probably read Secret Whispers only to get some closure from this book. (And I'm a a masochist) If you are thinking of picking up this book, I seriously advise you to put it DOWN!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

This Is So Scary I Have To Wishlist It!

I'm reading a V.C. Andrews novel right now. Please don't tell anyone. I'm really ashamed of myself for picking it up, but it was given to me!!

It also got me looking at the books that were ghostwritten after Ms. Andrews passed away in 1986!! Yes, she died more than 20 years ago and this dufus is still putting out bad novels in her name.


Most of the novels that carry her name were ghostwritten. She only wrote 8.

Oye vey.

But this book is due out in Oct and it just looks so bad that I have to read it.

Book Blurb: When I was a little girl, Daddy told me never to fear the dark. “We exist because of the darkness,” he told me. “All of you are daughters of darkness.”Beloved bestselling author V.C. Andrews’s passion for vampires comes to spellbinding life in a long-awaited novel of dark desires as all-consuming—and forbidden—as in Flowers in the Attic. One night, with the sound of a young man’s scream, high school senior Lorelei discovers that her stern but loving father, who adopted Lorelei and her sisters as infants, is no ordinary man. He has raised his beautiful girls for one purpose: to lure young men into their world of shadows. Like her sisters, Lorelei has been trained in the art of seduction and warned never to fall in love. But when she meets a handsome and charming classmate, she boldly defies her family and follows her heart—even if love is a poison

Unbelievable! The ghostwriter is going all vampire on us! How very interesting, and horrifying.

I feel really sorry for V.C. Andrews, that her own legacy of weird novels is being tainted by stuff like this.

Book Review: Vanishing Bride

Author: Magali
Title: Vanishing Bride
Publisher: Mystique Books
Publish Date: August 1977
Rating: 5 Stars
Book Blurb: "Your husband will never find you..."
In the desolate mountain fortress, Marion Maresco tried to piece together the shattered remnants of her life. But her precious calm was soon swallowed up in a maelstrom of intrigue and trickery, which swarmed through the ancient walls of Castel Terralba.

Not the least of her problems was the fiercely handsome Marquis, Don Carlo de Terralba, who did not suspect the real reason for Marioun's sudden appearance in remote Sardinia.

Fearing detection, Marion attempted to escape another situation that had become unbearable to her. But no one escaped the Marquis!

Review: For a book that is well over 30 years old, the story holds up really nicely.

Marion starts out a bit wishy washy, but when she returns home after a near death trip, she over hears her husband talking about her and how he plans on swindling her company out of everything, to his sister. (A sister Marion didn't know existed)

She takes things into her own hands and ends up in Italy as a governess while a PI and her attorney sort out her soon to be ex-husband. But she isn't in Italy without duties. She's supposed to find out how the family is treating a little girl, Lucy, who had been kidnapped 3 years prior from her cabaret singing mother.

Marion gets close to the family of the little girl and her conscience kicks in. She also finds herself more than a little bit attracted to the Marquis. I really liked that the writer didn't have her act on her feelings especially as she didn't know how the dissolution of her marriage was coming along.

She also proves her strength when Lucy was again kidnapped and she hunts down the PI and singer who were trying to spirit her out of the country, even though most of the family felt that she might have been helping them take the girl away.

This was an excellent book for the time period it was written in. Well worth reading.

Review Policy

To Authors and Publishers

I will gladly review a book if it fits the following criteria:

What I will review: I am open to reviewing books that are romance, literary fiction, historical fiction,  young adult, paranormal, chick lit, fantasy, supernatural, suspense and humor. This book will primarily focus on romance and YA, but if you have a book you think I might enjoy, feel free to email me @

What I will NOT review: Anything that is political as well as most non-fiction, as that is really not my thing

eBooks: I will gladly review your book in eBook form as long as is in either mobi or epub format.

My Reviews: My reviews include a picture of the book cover and other publishing information including author, publisher, date and date of publication. I will also include the book blurb from a major book seller or Goodreads.

I will read the book(s) as soon as I possibly can. Please allow 14 days for a review to be posted.

Rating System: My rating system can be found on the sidebar. I use a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the best.

Author Interview: Amber Riley

I was lucky enough to be able to do a little Q & A with the author of The Flash of a Firefly this week. Here's what she had to say!

Vampire fiction is always popular, why do you think that is?
Vampires have that certain air of mystery about them. I think it fascinates people and makes them want more.

Do you have a favorite author of paranormal fiction?
Yes. I'm rather partial to Charlaine Harris.

What in particular do you like about vampires and werewolves?
I like that they can pass for human. You would never know if they're around you. They're the perfect predators.

What was your inspiration for The Flash Of A Firefly?
Kaden. I didn't have a plot when I began writing, but when I really looked at the main character everything clicked.

You stuck pretty closely to the original vampire myth. Tell us why you chose to do this, as opposed to creating a new one?
I'm a sucker for tradition. While I enjoy some of the updated versions, to me, the original myths make a "real" vampire.

Kaden was really a well adjusted vampire. Can you fill us in on some of his secrets?
He always does what he thinks is right, even if it turns out to be wrong. He knows the importance of having friends to rely on during hard times. He also doesn't underestimate the power of trust.

The end of The Flash of a Firefly really left us hanging. Do you have book two in the works yet?
Yes. It coming along nicely. I hope to have it out by next summer.

You can buy The Flash of a Firefly: Kindred Blood: Book One @ Amazon

Friday, July 23, 2010

Book Review: The Flash Of A Firefly

Author:  Amber Riley
Title: Flash of A Firefly
Publisher: iUniverse
Publish Date: July 2010
Rating: 5 Stars
Book Blurb: Trying to put his past behind him, Kaden moves to New York City where he creates a new life for himself. And that isn't easy, considering the fact that he's a six-hundred-year-old vampire who hasn't fed on a human in more than a century. Unfortunately, the past isn't something you can always escape from. When old enemies resurface, they come with a message. His master wants him back and refusing isn't an option. Confronted with losing both his freedom, as well as the human that has captivated him, Kaden struggles to hold onto his humanity while controlling his darker side. He knows the showdown is inevitable. He must find a way to stand his ground.

Review: Amber Riley's debut novel is a fun and fast paced story of vampires, werewolves and one or two mortals. I was so pleased to learn as I read that this wasn't going to be another vampire romance.

Kaden does find himself drawn to a young mortal, but things don't go quite the way of hearts and flowers, because his creator, Phoenix is trying to get him to return to Spain.

There's a lot of action in this book, as Kaden discovers that his creator has sent someone to bring him back. It really keeps you turning the pages to get to a big ole cliffhanger ending that will have you wishing for book 2 in the saga for several reasons.

1. What will happen between Kaden and Phoenix?
2. Will he let Lyn go, or will their relationship progress?

Yes, there are some questions left unanswered, but I think that it is appropriate, so that readers will want the second book, especially as the characters are so well developed and likable. If the vampires wouldn't have you for dinner because you're mortal, you'd really want to hang out with them, especially Flo who is just a little bit crazy. (Fun crazy)

The material is suitable for teens on up, though the characters are mostly in their 20s or were brought across in their twenties.

It is a quick read at 149 pages and my only gripe with it is that it was too short.

*this book was reviewed by the request of the author

Book Blogger Hop & Follow My Blog Friday

Book Blogger Hop

The Hop is Hosted By Jennifer @ Crazy For Books.

Each week she poses a get to know each other better question. This week's question is: Tell us about the book you are currently reading.

I'm curretnly reading Amber Riley's The Flash Of A Firefly. It is a vampire book and thankfully it doesn't seem to be much of a vampire romance. I'm about halfway in and I'm enjoying the characters, both vampire, human and werewolf, because they are all strong, with distinctive personalities. The story is fast moving and really great so far!

Hosted by Parajunkee

Now onto some of the stuff I've been doing this week, for anyone new who is stopping by via these two features

Amanda Stevens - Matters Of Seduction
Karen Foley - Hold On To The Nights
Barbara MacMahon - Accidentally The Sheikh's Wife

Friday Finds
Waiting On Wednesday
Top Ten Tuesday
It's Monday! What Are You Reading
In My Mailbox
On My Wishlist

If You Like

Friday Finds

Another fun book meme care of Should Be Reading.

What great books did you hear about / discover this past week?

I didn't even know this book was coming out until I saw it for pre-order at BOMC2

Philippa Gregory - The Red Queen

The second book in Philippa's stunning new trilogy, The Cousins War, brings to life the story of Margaret Beaufort, a shadowy and mysterious character in the first book of the series - The White Queen - but who now takes centre stage in the bitter struggle of The War of the Roses. The Red Queen tells the story of the child-bride of Edmund Tudor, who, although widowed in her early teens, uses her determination of character and wily plotting to infiltrate the house of York under the guise of loyal friend and servant, undermine the support for Richard III and ultimately ensure that her only son, Henry Tudor, triumphs as King of England. Through collaboration with the dowager Queen Elizabeth Woodville, Margaret agrees a betrothal between Henry and Elizabeth's daughter, thereby uniting the families and resolving the Cousins War once and for all by founding of the Tudor dynasty.

Scott Westerfeld - The Leviathan

Prince Aleksander, would-be heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, is on the run. His own people have turned on him. His title is worthless. All he has is a battletorn war machine and a loyal crew of men.

Deryn Sharp is a commoner, disguised as a boy in the British Air Service. She's a brilliant airman. But her secret is in constant danger of being discovered.

With World War I brewing, Alek and Deryn's paths cross in the most unexpected way…taking them on a fantastical, around-the-world adventure that will change both their lives forever.

Stacey Kade - The Ghost and the Goth

After a close encounter with the front end of a school bus, Alona Dare goes from Homecoming Queen to Queen of the Dead. Now she’s stuck here in spirit form with no sign of the big, bright light coming to take her away. To make matters worse, the only person who might be able to help her is Will Killian, a total loser/outcast type who hates the social elite. He alone can see and hear her, but he wants nothing to do with the former mean girl of Groundsboro High.

Can they get over their mutual distrust—and this weird attraction between them—to work together before Alona vanishes for good and Will is locked up for seeing things that don’t exist?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

If You Like

Do you love an author? Do you want to find other authors that have a similar writing style? Well, I'm here to help you!

This week my much loved author is Amanda Quick who is also Jayne Ann Krentz. She writes some of the best historical romances. She was one of the first big name writers I fell in love with once I started drifting away from series regencies in high school.

I bring you not one but two suggestions of authors you might want to try if you like books by Amanda Quick

My two suggestions are Brenda Joyce and Nicola Cornick

Both authors write really well for the historical genre, and Brenda even does well with paranormal romance. Nicola is definitely a great one for longer regency style historicals. Both authors are well worth reading.

Book Review: Matters of Seduction

Author: Amanda Stevens
Title: Matters Of Seduction
Publisher: Harlequin Intrigue
Publish Date: May 2005
Rating: 4 Stars
Book Blurb: Special Agent Prudence Dunlop was anxious to leave her desk job and get out in the field, but her all-too-handsome boss, John Cahill, denied each request she made. So when the opportunity to catch a cunning serial killer arose, Pru would do anything to prove herself. She'd even strip off her plain Jane persona and pose as a seductive temptress in the hopes of luring out the murderer. Instead, she unleashed an even more dangerous scenario between her and her boss. Though taking on the elusive killer threatened her life, would falling in love with John be the greatest risk of all?

Coincidences... Chance encounters...
It's what one Houston, Texas, firm specializes in. Who knows what lies around the next corner?

Review: This book was hands down the best intrigue I've read in a very long time. I don't usually read from this line because all the plots are the same. PI or cop is trying to save girl (and usually baby) from some evil guy trying to kill her or kidnap her child. They never used to be that way, but lately the stories have been bland. This one from 2005 was anything but.

The romance was really toned down so there was more to the actual mystery, which involved someone the FBI thought was a "surrogate" serial killer. John and Pru work for a special ops type of group that deals with serial killers.

The thing that bugged me the most was how inaccurate the book blurb was. Yes, Pru posed as a the exact type of woman the killer was looking for, but it wasn't until the last 20 pages and there was so much more to this story than that. It really read like a good episode of Criminal Minds or NCIS only with a newbie on the team that has a crush on the boss.

I only wish the relationship aspect wasn't in this one. Not because I didn't want Pru and John to be together, but because it felt so secondary to the story that it was almost a distraction.

The best thing about this book? You won't guess who did it which is really amazing considering it is a Harlequin Intrigue.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Waiting On Wednesday

Waiting On Wednesday is brought to you by Breaking The Spine. This meme spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

I think I'm with most of the world in anticipating this first book. The cover pic looks a little Johnny Depp-ish.

Cassandra Clare - Clockwork Angel

Magic is dangerous—but love is more dangerous still.

When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos.

Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What’s more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own.

Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by—and torn between—two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length . . . everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world. . . . and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

OMG..I don't think I finished this series, but now I'm going to have to. I remember reading Clan Of The Cave Bear in high school!!

Jean M. Auel - The Land Of The Painted Caves

The highly anticipated sixth book of Jean Auel's Earth's Children® series, THE LAND OF PAINTED CAVES, is the culmination fans have been waiting for. Continuing the story of Ayla and Jondalar, Auel combines her brilliant narrative skills and appealing characters with a remarkable re-creation of the way life was lived more than 25,000 years ago. THE LAND OF PAINTED CAVES is an exquisite achievement by one of the world's most beloved authors.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Book Review: Hold On To The Nights

Author: Karen Foley
Title: Hold On To The Nights
Publisher: Harlequin Blaze
Publish Date: November 2009
Rating: 3 Stars
Book Blurb: Graeme Hamilton: Hollywood's hottest bachelor. Lara Whitfield: his biggest fan. To the world, they're strangers. But Lara has a juicy secret... their five-year-old annulled marriage is still legal!

How should Lara break the news? Jump Graeme at a fan convention, of costume! Her reward: the earthshaking sex she's been missing.

But Graeme instantly recognizes Lara's tantalizing touch. And he's got a secret, too. First, though, he's going to make his wife pay for their years apart... one shattering orgasm at a time....

Review: This book really was all about sex. Somewhere in the grand scheme of things that plot got lost and Greame and Lara just started to...go at it like bunnies. That's good if you like to read 210 pages of hot steamy sex. I don't usually feel that way. I kind of like a little more story to go along with the passion and there just wasn't enough for me.

The other thing that bugged me, was how Lara really didn't seem to care about Christopher's feelings. She just flitted off with divorce papers in hand to find her husband, who is a famous tv star, at a convention in Vegas.


She wants to end the marriage that she didn't know was still valid so she can hook up with Christopher who is safe. She also writes erotic fanfiction about the character her husband plays in a Sci-fi show.

And why does she want a divorce?

I'm not sure.

Within minutes of their meeting they are naked and doing the horizontal mambo. (Though Lara is wearing a mask) But when that comes off there isn't really a big enough explosion from either party to make the whole thing seem believable.

The characters were very likable though and that's what made reading this fun, even though it wasn't the best Blaze book I've read. It was pleasant enough to pass a few boring hours though.

Top Ten Tuesday

This is an meme from The Broke and the Bookish.

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list complete with one of our bloggers answers.

Top Ten Most Intimidating Books!

1. Victor Hugo - Les Miserables: I have read two of the abridged versions but still have not had the guts to try to read the full 1000 + page original.

2. William Makepeace Thackery - Vanity Fair: This book is on my Classics challenge this year. I will read it, if it kills me! (It just might)

3. Stephan King - The Stand: Horror novels intimidate me, long horror novels terrify me.

4. Stephanie Meyer - Eclipse: OK, the whole Twilight Saga has been intimidating to me, but I'm tackling it. I'm usually a fast reader but these books usually take me forever to get through. I'm not looking forward the the last two gi-normous books.

5. Herman Melville - Moby Dick: I never made it through this book in high school. Apologies to Mrs. Paglia, but this book was intimidating and boring, and I still think it was just about a FREAKING WHALE! I'd rather read a book about Shamu!

6. J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: I need to re-read the whole series when I finally find a copy of the last book, so I have a clue. I'm a little bit intimidated by all 7 books even though I have read most of them.

7. Charles Dickens - A Tale Of Two Cities: I have no problem reading the classics but some of the writing is so dry and Dickens is one author who I've never been able to get into aside from A Christmas Carol.

8. Walter Issacson - Einstein: His Life and Works: OMG this is one I've actually made it through, but it is huge and I expected it to be boring, and the science parts were, but Einstein's life was really interesting and he was quite the ladies man, believe it or not!

9. Leo Tolstoy - Anna Karenina: Another huge tome that has been sitting on my shelf for ages.

10. Mary Shelly - Frankenstein: Not a long one but one I've been fearful of reading.
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