Monday, May 31, 2010

500 Page Challenge/ Dragonfly In Amber

We're going into June and I wanted to wrap up May's reading with a review and then what my June challenge choice will be : )

Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander, Book 2)
Dragonfly in Amber
Diana Gabaldon
Pgs. 752
Randopm House

First off, I love Jamie Fraser and Claire Beauchamp Randall Fraser.  Their characters are wonderful and full of life.  Jamie is such a spitfire with such wit, I just love the things he says to Claire, "yer ken yer killin me sassenach.",you can just hear his Scottish accent!  I like Claire too.  She is smart and quick on her feet.  Sometimes I wish her toughness would have come out in certain parts where I felt it was needed, and not so much in others.  She does hold her ground though, and I admire that.

Dragonfly In Amber is not as quick paced as Outlander.  It took me a bit more to get through this one.  It was mired in a lot of war detail as far as Bonnie Prince Charlie, King James, King Louis, and so on.  Their time living in France while Jamie ran his cousins shipping import business and uprising and all the minutia of war really made it lag a bit for me at times.  There are big chunks in the book where you just aren't at the edge of your seat so that can be rough.  Though, you do have funny history tidbits like when Mother Hildegarde, a nun at the hospital Claire volunteers at, speaks of Bach and the musical piece he sent her.  Obviously there is no clue to the fame he will acquire.

I adore how much Jamie loves Claire.  Some of the things he tells here just tug at my heart. You forget he's only 24 years old!  Here are just a few of the things he says that get me -

"Oh Claire, ye do break my heart wi lovin you."
"Claire, ye do kill me, knife or no."  he whispered face buried in my hair.
He touched my face briefly with a rueful smile. "Aye, mo duinne, but you're my sassenach."

Jamie's love for Claire is so pure and rich it just touches the soul.  Of course my heart broke in this book as well.  It can't be helped it is a timeless love and you want to follow it all the way through so I will read on to the next and the next. 

There was one scene where the Red Coats are outside an abandoned church with a thatch roof and Claire, Jamie, Dougal and all the men are trapped in the church.  The English threaten to light it up if they don't come out and Claire yells "No! Bloody bastards!  This is a church!  Have you never heard of sanctuary?"  They're shocked to hear her English accent and think the Scott's are holding her so Dougal says lets use her as a bargaining chip, and she says yes it's the only way.  Jamie agrees begrudgingly and he carries her out so it looks like she has swooned.  He holds her so tight to his body she can feel his heart pounding beneath her ear and feel the trembling of his arms as he holds her, and he lets one word out- God, under his breath as he carries his heart to the enemy.

You learn a bit about her daughter, not much about Frank in this one.  I'd like to know just what happened when she came back and what his reaction was, I guess that'll be broached in later stories.  Do read these books it is truly a wonderful tale that you can smile and cry at.

Now for June's 500 page challenge : )

Covet (Fallen Angels, Book 1)

Covet JR Ward
 Pgs. 496

I know I know, it's 4 pgs shy of 500, but I've had it on my bookshelf since October and I need to read it already!  Maybe I'll tackle 2 400 pagers and we'll call it even ; )

So, what are you all going to read for the challenge?  Come back share and link us to it so we can all follow!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Whacha Reading? (May 30th)

I know I know, it's not Friday!  Well, I was in VEGAS!!  Yeah baby, and I wanted to get this up before the weekend expired completely : )

Well guess what?  I finally finished Dragonfly In Amber!  Can you believe it?  It never takes me this long to read a book unless it's a real drag, and this one isn't.  Granted, it's not edge of your seat action, and gets a little bogged down in the history telling, but it's just taking me forever.  This is 2 weeks I'm reading it now.

It is picked up, though it took almost 3/4 through!  I wish the whole book would have had more action like this.  I knew I was gonna be sad, it seems to be inevitable with the 2 of em.

Again a real slow month reading wise for me, I'm way off my usual 6, but I'll read while I'm at the pool ; ) I've been wanting to get to those Night Hunters again, I'm up to #3.

What about you, is it decent, a sleeping pill, or a nail biting heart stopper?

Have a great Memorial Day weekend and get some good reading in!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Waiting On Wednesday

This is a weekly post hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine.  Check it out and jump on board ;)

Eternal Kiss of Darkness (Night Huntress World, Book 2)Eternal Kiss Of Darkness
Jeanienne Frost
Paperback 384 Pgs
August 1st

Now first off, I just LOVE the cover, much better than Spade's book-First Drop Of Crimson's cover.  To be honest I never really liked Mencheres in the Night Huntress series.  Well that may be a little harsh, I didn't feel anything for him one way or the other, but reading the blurb, and suddenly I find myself interested.  Then I went to Miss. Frost's site and read snippets, and omg, I am just chomping for the book now.  Here are the snippets -

snippet 1
snippet 2
snippet 3
snippet 4

Ok, can you say HOT!  *sprays self with water mister* Should we expect anything less after reading about Bones and Cat in the Night Huntress?  I have to say I didn't like Spade's book as much as I'd hoped for.  FDOC didn't pack the same punch as Night Huntress, where as these snippets of Mencheres seems to really be loaded.  Now what I would just love is a book about Ian and then maybe Vlad, but she has Bones and Cat # 5 coming too.  I can't wait, not sure when that'll be yet, but I just love Bones.  She has created some character in him.

click on the picture to pre-order yours!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Tuesday Teaser (May 25th)

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Miz B over at Should Be Reading.  Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

Grab your current read
Open to a random page
Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander, Book 2)
   My Teaser-
   There was no way for him(Jamie)
   to find me.  No one in the Stuart

   camp knew where I was; I was
   entirely alone.

I don't know the page, again it's my kindle the location is 13492-95

Well, I am at 85% done, and I am wondering how this is going to wrap up!  I'm anxious to see how Gabaldon pulls it together since the end is just about here.

I will do a complete review once I've finished the book, hopefully in the next couple of days.  This month was a very slow reading month for me and I don't know why.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Whacha Reading?(May 21st)

I'm going to make Fridays officially Whacha Reading day.  I'll post this each week just to do a quick end of the work/school week update of what's been/being read : )

I'm still reading Dragonfly In Amber.  It is starting to really pick up now, with some pretty good action going on.  Claire and young Mary Hawkins have been attacked and poor Mary was raped.  Someone they thought was dead is very much alive and has both Jamie and Claire very distressed.  I like how the book mixes a bit of true history in it's story.  Learning about King James and Louis, Bonnie Prince Charlie is a very neat way to get some lessons in there ; )

I have spoken once before about feeling connections with book characters and how Cody McFadyen failed to do that for both me and my hubs with Smoky Barret.  This is not the case with Claire and Jamie.  Diana Gabaldon has succeeded fabulously in weaving such brilliant characters that you really become attached to.  I love this couple and I want to learn what happens with all the characters she has brought to life.  That is the sign of a fantastic author.

When your emotions are so tied into what's happening to the character that you can weep along with them or feel the dread or heartwrenching hurt, or you can actually "hear" the accent of the character when he speaks, that author has truly done a wonderful job of pulling you right into that book with them.  Not too many have that capacity, Charlaine Harris, Patricia Cornwell, Stephen King, and Jeaniene Frost are masters of it imho(my humble opinion).  I love being so lost in a book that I can't even hear what's happening around me.  I don't think my family likes it too much, but sometimes you can't help it, you just get sucked in.

So what is on your nightstand or coffee table waiting for you to hurry back and finish up?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Waiting On Wednesday

Wow is a weekly post hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine.

Blameless (The Parasol Protectorate) 

Blameles (The Parasol Protectorate)
Gail Carriger
Paperpack - 384 pgs

from Amazon-

Quitting her husband's house and moving back in with her horrible family, Lady Maccon becomes the scandal of the London season.

Queen Victoria dismisses her from the Shadow Council, and the only person who can explain anything, Lord Akeldama, unexpectedly leaves town. To top it all off, Alexia is attacked by homicidal mechanical ladybugs, indicating, as only ladybugs can, the fact that all of London's vampires are now very much interested in seeing Alexia quite thoroughly dead.

While Lord Maccon elects to get progressively more inebriated and Professor Lyall desperately tries to hold the Woolsey werewolf pack together, Alexia flees England for Italy in search of the mysterious Templars. Only they know enough about the preternatural to explain her increasingly inconvenient condition, but they may be worse than the vampires -- and they're armed with pesto.  

I have fallen behind in reading this series having only read #1. It was a very good book. Miss Tarabotti was a great character. I need to get on the ball here! My fave of them all though, was vamp Lord Akeldama. He was sassy and witty, what a hoot!  

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Teaser Tuesday (May 18th)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

Grab your current read
Open to a random page
Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
I first saw this on Beverly's blog, The Wormhole, and I thought this is a really neat idea!!  A great way to peak inside a book and decide if you want to read it or not.  I would just add one thing, if you're enjoying the book or not : )  I'm reading Dragonfly In Amber, and I'm enjoying it.  I really like Jamie and Claire.

Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander, Book 2)

Teaser -
Three months since Jamie had encountered Jack Randall in Madame Elise's establishment, and seen something that made all promises null and void, that had formed in him the determination to kill Jack Randall.  Three months since he had left-never to return.

I can't include the pg # since I'm reading it on my kindle, which goes by very large #'s and % of how much you've read.  I punched in 6000 and something and this is the page that came up ; )

OOOOO!!!  I'm not up to this yet, but even I'm excited and filled with some trepidation!  Eeek, it's gonna get even better : )

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Dead In The Family

Dead in the Family (Sookie Stackhouse, Book 10)
Dead In The Family
Charlaine Harris
Hardcover 320 pgs

And the verdict is...well, I have to be honest.  It was good not great.  Still a must read, but not the same thrill that I've had with the others.  It just seemed to be lacking the punch, zing, pow. That happens sometimes with a series, there will be one or two that don't do it for ya - alla JR Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood books for Butch and Phury.  They really left a lot to be desired, but I would still say to read em.

You get your ?'s answered as far as the what and why of where Eric was when Sookie was in trouble with the last book, poor Bill is sick as a dog, not that I'm on team Bill now, but he is pitiful.  Some new characters come into the picture, we meet Eric's maker, and his baby "brother", oh boy!  FBI agent Tom Lattesta is just hot to nail Sookie to the wall, the man hates her!!!

I like how Jason has developed, they seem to have a much better relationship as brother and sister.  Her cousin Claude is featured more and you do get to know him a tad better.  The old stand-by's still need her help alla Alcide and his pack crap.  Pam is her usual self, I just love her.  Learing a bit more about Bills maker and his past with Lorena was nice, kind of gives you a bit of perspective on Lorena's personality.

The fact that the government now is pushing for shifters to register is a big chunk of junk stuck in the two natured's craw.  If you can believe it, they don't go into Sookie's relationship with her man as much as you would hope and want.  What man you ask?  Read, read, read people ; )

I do love the series, Miss Charlaine is a wonderful writer, and of course I will excitedly wait for #11.  My poor brain just doesn't work as well as it used to.  Having 6 kids really has sucked the brain cells right outta my head.  Daughter Desirae and I were all stoked to go to Charlaine Harris' book signing at the Grove Barnes and Noble in Los Angeles, and I FORGOT!!!  Yes it's true, it flew right outta my dumb head!  On Tuesday I was relaxing on the couch reading DITF and I yelled upstairs to Des "Guess what we forgot?" she said "no it's the 12th!"  "Nope I'm pretty sure it was the 10th."  Sure enough it was, boy was I mad at myself.  I have 2 signed books, none were gotten by me in person, one was ordered, and one I won.  I'll post about them at another time.  Oh well I guess there are worse things in the world and I've begun paying attention to authors book signing soooo....

In the meantime, get the book read it and see what you think.

Waiting On Wednesday

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly post hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine.  Stop by and check it out : )

Taken by Midnight: A Midnight Breed Novel

Taken By Midnight
Lara Adrian
Paperback 448 pgs.
Release Date September 28th 2010

From Lara Adrian's site itself-
Story Summary:

At the crossroads of death and desire, a woman tastes a pleasure no mortal is meant to survive . . .

In the frozen Alaskan wilderness, former state trooper Jenna Darrow survives an unspeakable breach of body and soul. But with her narrow escape comes an even greater challenge. For strange changes are taking place within her, as she struggles to understand--and control--a new hunger. To do so, she will seek shelter in the Boston compound of the Order, an ancient race of vampire warriors whose very existence is shrouded in mystery. Perhaps the most mysterious of them all is Brock, a brooding, dark-eyed alpha male whose hands hold the power to comfort, heal . . . and arouse.

As she recovers under Brock's care, Jenna finds herself drawn to the Order's mission: to stop a ruthless enemy and its army of assassins from subjecting Earth to a reign of terror. Yet in spite of their resolve, a purely physical relationship without strings soon binds Brock and Jenna together with a desire fiercer than life and stronger than death itself--until a secret from Brock's past and Jenna's own mortality challenges their forbidden love to the ultimate trial by fire.

This book seems to be a little different in that the gal lead is not one of the Breedmates that the vamps are usually with.  I'm wondering how that'll go, but I liked the last, and Jenna was featured in it, Shades Of Midnight so I'm interested to see how Lara handles this new twist.  I really don't know Brock that well, she is taking the lesser secondary Breed warriors now, I wish she would have done Sterling Chase, aka Harvard's book, I like his character.  Ever since he realized Elise, Tegan's mate wasn't interested in him, he kinda went off the deep end a bit and I want to see her develop him so more.

I have read all the breed so far.  I liked all of them except Ashes of Midnight.  Just kinda blah for me.  My faves are Tegan and Rio's books, Midnight Awakening and Midnight Rising.  Those dark sulky brooders make the books enjoyable.

Her site also has these little teaser trailers here.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Mother's Day Gift Idea And A Challenge

For those of you who already know this, I'm sorry, but I must say it again -

I love my Kindle!!! My husband got it for me last Mother's Day, and it ranks up there as one of the best presents ever!!! For those who are on the fence about it, let me knock you off. It is just fantastic. Lightweight, perfect for travel, or a day at the beach or park. It fits right in my purse, and I take it everywhere with me. Don't get me wrong, I will never give up traditional books, but this is just such an awesome way to read. I can't brag enough about it!

Husbands, if you stumble on this, well worth it if your wive's love to read as much as I do, girls, ask for it if you've been thinking about it, you won't be sorry : )

This is the upgraded model with the larger screen, personally, I don't think it's necessary, but hey, if that's what you like, go for it. You can purchase some really great skins for the smaller kindle on ebay, and a light as well, it makes it look great.

Now for the challenge. I hope to have a lot more followers eventually so that these challenges will become fun, but for now I will be reading a book with more than 500 pgs in May. Dragonfly in Amber is book 2 in the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon. Book 1 touched me so very much, that I am looking foward to the next. I didn't get to it in April, I know I won't be able to get through it by the 30th, so I am making it my May Challenge. If you stumble onto this and would like to join just link back to this post so others can join too, pick a book that's 500 pgs or more and tell me what you're reading. Feel free to copy the image to post on your blog if you'd like as well ; )

I've gotten through quite a few books in April. I've been discovering some great authors, and some great reads. I start out with listing what I'd like to read for the month, then as the month progresses, that list grows, gets tweaked a bit, and I find that I've read some books I didn't plan on and didn't get to ones that I did. When you have a to be read (TBR) pile that is alarmingly large, it helps to list what you'd like to read for the month. There are so many books out there, I sometimes forget which ones I really wanted to get too, so a list is helpful.

Reading really is one of my passions and always has been. Jump on board for some great escape!

OutlanderDragonfly in Amber (Outlander, Book 2)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Waiting On Wednesday

A weekly post hosted by Jill over at Breaking The Spine highlighting new releases you're waiting for

Magic Bleeds (Kate Daniels, Book 4)
Magic Bleeds
Ilona Andrews
Paperback - 384
Publisher - Ace

This weeks wow is a series I just started in March. The Magic Series by Ilona Andrews. I love this series and am waiting for # 4 Magic Bleeds to come out May 25th. I love Kate Daniels, I love Curran. All the characters are rich and vibrant. Kate is one tough cookie and I am dying to see what happens with her and Curran.
The description says the newest foe that Kate must take on may be too much for her and Curran the King of The Beasts to even handle. This time she has to deal with family. There's a bit of intrigue involving Kate and who her family is, so this one will probably clear a lot of that up.

On a side note, last weeks wow, Dead In The Family came in the mail yesterday!!! Yay! I pre-ordered it from Amazon and started it last night. I had started Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon and as much as I love Claire and Jamie, I have to read Sookie ; )

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Thriller And Suspense Reading Challenge Part Deux

I've read a few suspense novels since this challenge started in January and I just wanted to touch on them briefly for May's review post.  The challenge is to read 12 all toll for the year.
By Robert Crais
Paperback 237 pgs
Publisher - Crimeline

This was a great book.  The protagonist is Elvis Cole.  A Disney character loving Private Eye.  He has this smart ass attitude that comes out at very odd times.  Like when some guys are in his office ready to kick his ass.  Monkey's Raincoat is the first in the series, and Elvis takes on the case of a murdered man and his kidnapped son at the pleading of the victims wife, Ellen Lang and her friend.  He is quite hesitant in the begining about it, not knowing if she can even pay him.  Ellen has lived a sheltered life with her husband Mort, and she can't even write a check!  Mort is a talent agent in Hollywood and hasn't been doing very well.  Elvis has to go digging into some real garbage to get to the bottom of the murder and get Ellen's son back.

You also meet Elvis' partner in the agency, Joe Pike.  He is a very quiet, brooding, deadly man.  A Vietnam Vet, to say he has issues is an understatement, yet you can't help but like him.  Together Elvis and Joe work to solve this case, plenty of action, lots of suspense, well worth the read, and I will definitely continue with the series.

Victor Gischler
Paperback 352 pgs
Publisher - Touchstone

This book took a bit before it picked up for me.  At about halfway through I really started to enjoy it.  A murder/suspence mystery with a nice dose of humor in it, I laughed a few times as I read.  Allen Cabot is a College student who is going to spend some time in Prague doing research for pain in the neck Professor Evergreen.  Not too enthused about the mission, he begrudgingly goes and finds himself smack dab in the middle of a battle between a Society of Witches, Jesuit Priest commandos and Professor Evergreen's very mysterious very beautiful wife.  The ghost of alchemist Edward Kelly narrates the story and he pulls us back and forth through time with humor explaining the mystery of just what all these people really are doing in Prague.

Murder, power hungry people, a smidge of romance, serves up some suspense with a great close.  I liked this book, even though it took a bit to get going.

The Face of Death
Cody McFadyen
Paperback 624 pgs.
Publisher - Bantam

This is book 2 in Smoky Barret's series that McFadyen has weaved.  I have to say, as a man writing a woman's viewpoint, he sometimes does things that I don't think a woman would do.  He also has Bonnie, the 10 year old daughter of her friend from book 1, do and "say" things that I don't think 10 yr olds realistically would say or do, so I think I understand what my hubs was saying about the fluff in the book.  That said, it kicks off with a real bang right out of the gate.  Smoky has her vacation interupted by a call telling her a 16 yr old is requesting her specifically to speak to.  The girl, named Sarah, is holding a gun to her own head and her family has been slaughtered.  This killer or "The Stranger" as the girl calls him, killed her parents and has been doing bad things to her for 10 years now.  He is cutting a killing swath and Smoky and her team are on the case.  It was a good book.  Some of the parts are a little unrealistic.  Like Sarah at 9 being spoken too about grief like she's an adult.  As the mother of a 9 yr old, there is no way I would speak to her like that, even my 11 yr old who is an old soul in a kids body wouldn't merit being spoken to in that way.  Over their heads big time I don't care how "mature" or what the child went through. 

All in all, Smoky is a decent character, I don't have strong feelings for her one way or another like Kay Scarpetta, I don't know if I will or not, and the other characters are still not yet fleshed out enough for me to feel much for them yet.  Alan's wife Elaina just doesn't do it for me as the mother of everyone, and thank goodness Callie's honey-love was almost nonexistent, though if pushed to really choose, I think I like her the best so far.

You can find my other review of book 1 Shadow Man by clicking right on this word here : )  All together I've read 7 in the Thriller and Suspense Reading Challenge.  I'm enjoying it, it has always been one of my most favorite genres!

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