Friday, July 22, 2011

Hippity Hop Friday

Interested in an online book-club?  We  have *Authors By The Alphabet*, each month an author is chosen by the letter of the alphabet we read, and then discuss, each month a different member chooses and then hosts the q-n-a.  We've read some eclectic books and are up to the letter H with Charlaine Harris' Grave Sight for this month.  Click on the club title to join. 

This Hop is hosted by Jennifer from Crazy-For-Books, and it runs through the weekend, so if you can't today, hop on tomorrow!  Just remember, go to her site, follow the rules, visit some of the blogs and get to know em, if you start to follow tell em you met them through the hop!

This weeks ? -

What’s the ONE GENRE that you wish you could get into, but just can’t?

There isn't one.  If I don't read it it's because I can't stand it :p  One that comes to mind that I really would never even attempt is Sci Fi, have no desire can't stand it and don't ever wish I could try it.

Happy Hopping

Thursday, July 21, 2011

True Blood and Game Of Thrones

Warning - I will be divulging spoilers here, so if you don't want to know don't read on!

These are two programs on HBO that are based on books.  They are both absolutely fantastic shows.  There is one very great difference.  One has followed the book almost verbatim the other has been playing fast and loose.

When I started watching True Blood in 2008 I had no idea they were based on books.  For Christmas our older daughter requested them and that is what she got.  Well, we both read through them in about one month flat and fell in love hook line and sinker.  Since then we have read the entire series and it is one of the best I've ever read.  We were both VERY disappointed in season two with Alan Ball's horrific MaryAnn storyline. Season three redeemed itself quite a bit, but this season has me a bit in knots.  This season is based on book four.  This is a very pivotal book, Eric has amnesia due to a spell cast by evil witches, Jason is held prisoner, and the three supe groups come together to fight the witches regardless of the fact they they hate each other.  That is pretty important to note in my book.  What has me concerned?  Well, Jason's story is an amazing one and A.B. doesn't seem to be going in that direction.  What takes place with him and Crystal is very shocking and a great plot twist.  Jason being a baby maker for Hot Shot was not in the equation at all, nor was he held by the town, just the one crazy dude.

He has eliminated an entire storyline by killing Queen Sophie.  Same with Claudine, who I'm still ticked at for not being Megan Fox gorgeous, let alone looking like some troll when not glamoured.  When an author goes to great trouble to describe the breathtaking beauty of her characters, you had better find actors to fit that bill.  Not that it matters since Eric ate her up ;)  I know we're only 4 shows in, but the vibe I'm getting is that Marnie the witch is not evil, just possessed by one.  How can you have the ultimate showdown with all the supes working together to fight if she really isn't all that bad.  And what Sam turns into to do that was just majestic and fantastic.  I'm itching to see how A.B. handles Debbie Pelt, I hope Eric comes through here like the book.  I love Eric's personality with his amnesia, he is quite funny, so far so good on that.

Now for Game Of Thrones.  This series is amazing!!  The detail and the scenes are phenomenal.  The look of the whole show puts you right there.  When John Snow is on the wall, you feel the freezing cold.  When Calisi is in the tent with all the candles the ambiance just flows.  The cast is fantastic and we all are enjoying this and can't wait for season two.  My nephew has read all the books and my hubby had to get them too.  Our son is up to three and he said that so far book one is right on the mark.  Having not read the books I am loving the show, and will read them, the fact that it is staying close to the story itself doesn't bother me at all.

I have heard some say "Who wants to see a show just like the books?"  ME!!!  It doesn't have to be exact, but when you read something you expect to see similar otherwise just come up with your own screenplay so there's no disappointment.  There are characters who I love and am glad they weren't killed (Lafayette), some who were invented like Jessica who is awesome, Tommy who isn't.  Some who were changed like Tara, who I can't stand, and others who were dumped before their time.  The whole Arlene story might work out to be a good one, but in the book it was very good.  We'll have to see how that plays out. I know I know the element of surprise yada yada yada, well when you see it on the screen even if you know what's coming it still moves you in a different way.

Well there's my rant, I know everyone has a different opinion on this, but I had to express mine here.  I can't wait to see how this season turns out.

Monday, July 18, 2011

An Ice Cold Grave

An Ice Cold Grave (Harper Connelly Mysteries, No. 3)

An Ice Cold Grave
Charlaine Harris
280 pgs
Berkely Prime Crime

Amazon Blurb -

Bestseller Harris's exciting third Harper Connelly mystery (after 2006's Grave Surprise) finds the psychic sleuth faced with her most challenging and heartbreaking job to date: locating the bodies of runaway boys who the people of Doraville, N.C., suspect have become victims of a serial killer. After Harper locates eight long-dead bodies, much to the surprise of skeptical Sheriff Sandra Rockwell, a mysterious figure attacks Harper. Though all Harper wants is to go home and recover from her injuries, the local authorities and State Bureau of Investigation agents demand that she stay in town to help with their investigation. The cold case heats up fast, attracting media attention as well as Harper's friends, ailing psychic Xylda Bernardo and her doting grandson, Manfred, who make another gruesome discovery. Harper's changing relationship with her stepbrother, manager and confidant, Tolliver Lang, lends personal interest. Harris dependably delivers fear with charming down-home finesse. 

Harper and Tolliver are in North Carolina searching for several boys who have gone missing in the past few years.  The most recent one just 3 months ago.  This is a first for Harper, she has never dealt with a serial killer before.  Sheriff Rockwell isn't as skeptical nor nasty to Harper as she has dealt with in the past.  One of the missing boys grandmother has taken up a collection to pay her with, and Harper sets out to see what she can do.

Locating 8 bodies for them, Harper is horrified at how they died and just wants to get the heck out of there.  Unfortunately that won't be the case.  She's attacked, ends up in the hospital, and the State Bureau of Investigations wants her to stay and help them some more.  It becomes a media circus, friend and psychic Xylda Bernardo and her grandson Manfred come to town to lend a hand.

Manfred is sweet on Harper and this just drives Tolliver crazy.  Harper loves Tolliver, who is NOT her brother, but keeps it to herself for fear that he'll up and leave her.  As the story progresses, how she feels comes out and what Tolliver thinks does as well.

Filled with suspense, great storyline, and great characters, Harris has scored again with Harper Connelly.  You can breeze through this book and not feel bogged down, yet be fully engrossed by the action.  I look forward to the next book.

4 cannolis

Monday, July 11, 2011

Flowers For Elvis

Flowers For Elvis
Flowers For Elvis
Julia Schuster
248 pgs.
Bell Bridge Books

Amazon Blurb -

Flowers For Elvis is quirky Southern fiction with a literary edge, surprising humor and an uplifting spirit. In 1956, Olivia and her twin sister are born to a nun an old auto parts store turned convent in rural Mississippi. Little Olivia doesn't survive the day, but her spunky spirit hangs around and takes on the role of ethereal watchdog over her twin. When the Reverend Mother-and holy guilt-convince the nun's sister (a young pregnant newlywed) to secretly raise the baby as the twin of her own soon-to-be-born child, Olivia realizes the urgency of her presence and support. Not only is her aunt a fanatical Elvis fan, she's a renegade Southern belle, bent on self-indulgence and desperate to safeguard her multitude of sins. Without revealing which girl is her twin until the end, Olivia takes the reader on a flower strewn tour of misguided love and maternal betrayal which culminates at Elvis' funeral, where they finally discover the truth of their parentage and unravel the generations of secrets that shadowed their lives. 

During a rainy night in rural Mississippi, in the cold, a nun has given birth to twins.  One is still born the other lives.  Mother Superior takes the babies, has the nuns bury the other baby girl in the yard of the convent which was once an auto parts shop.  The year is 1958 and the twins were bi-racial.  Mother names the baby that has passed Olivia and guiltily feels relief that she has died due to her obvious mixed heritage.  Being in the south during this time would have been way to hard for that child in her mind. What does Mother do?  She has the nun's sister who is also pregnant and due any day come down to the convent and tells her she is going to adopt this baby and raise her as her own.  Genevieve was a wild child and wonders what the Mother wants from her and can't believe this is her request.  With a pocket full of confessions scribbled to her idol Elvis, is shocked by Mother's desire.  Genevieve has no clue that this baby is really her niece, she thinks her sister is away on some mission with the nuns.  Filled with guilt for all her "sins" Genevieve stays at the convent and gives birth three days later, and then comes home with both girls to be raised as twins.  Mother never tells the baby's real mother that one twin died, only that both were adopted by a wonderful family.

The sweet twist?  Olivia's spirit leaves her tiny body, and she follows the "twins" and their mother/aunt throughout their life sort of as a guardian angel.  Poor Olivia tries to steer them, the girls somewhat sense her presence, but she can't do all that much to help them.

You soon learn that these girls are funny and mischievous, being taught by a woman/child who they call Moody instead of mom because of all her crazy mood swings.  Their father has no control over them nor does their mother who really doesn't give them much guidance at all.  They go on Elvis stalkings with Moody, help with the family floral business meet their Aunt Willard for the first time, suffer the disappearance of their father, and grow into pre-teens.  This is where the trouble really takes shape.  Poor Olivia is usually helpless to stop what takes place and realizes that sometimes bad has to happen in life.  While their Mother pines for her long lost love, the girls fend for themselves. 

As they grow, you never know which girl belongs to which sister, all the way to the very end.  You keep guessing, and the roller coaster of who their parents are becomes quite a ride worth getting on.

Tragic, funny, and sometimes very aggravating, this was a really great story.  I can't give it 5 cannolis for two reasons, I hate infidelity, and there was blatant child molestation taking place here with no comeuppance to the perpetrator imho, some who have read it will probably disagree, but it was not to my satisfaction.  I do recommend this book.

4 1/2 cannolis

Friday, July 8, 2011

Friday Follow

I haven't Followed in a long while.  Thought I'd take a spin :)

If you're interested we have a book club going on here called Authors By The Alphabet.  Kinda self explanatory, gives us all a chance to go through authors alphabetically and expand our reading world, sometimes with lovely surprises, sometimes with teeth gnashing growls ;)  This month is H and we have Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris. Just click on  the club title to join!

On to the Follow -

 To join the fun and make new book blogger friends, just follow these simple rules:

  1. Follow the Follow My Book Blog Friday Host { } and any one else you want to follow on the list
  2. Follow our Featured Bloggers - Read.Breathe.Relax.
  3. Put your Blog name & URL in the Linky thing.
  4. Grab the button up there and place it in a post, this post is for people to find a place to say hi in your comments
  5. Follow Follow Follow as many as you can
  6. If someone comments and says they are following you, be a dear and follow back. Spread the Love...and the followers
  7. If you want to show the link list, just follow the link below the entries and copy and paste it within your post!  
PJ's ? for this week -

Q. Let's step away from besties...What is the worst book that you've ever read and actually finished? 

I have three that I've read when I never should have continued, the second one was after I vowed to never EVER read a crummy book again!! 


Breaking Dawn (The Twilight Saga, Book 4) Yes it's true I hated this book.  By #3 I was like eh, then this one just stunk for me. I kept going since I had read the rest, but vowed to never do it again.  Too many good books out there to waste time on kaka.


About Grace: A Novel Oops I did it again ;)  Yeah that's right after saying NEVUH! I read the most boring book in the whole world.  They should have given this book out in Guantanamo for torture!  I kept going to see if my hunch about it was right and ya know what, that was really dumb.   Not only was I wrong, but I wanted to throw a rope over a rafter after this one!!!              

# 1

Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia

That's right folks, 3 times the charm :)  My all time suckiest book is this drivel filled bull sh*t.  Why did I do it you ask?  Well my sis in law started a book club last August and this was their first choice.  I was in Vegas when they met so I couldn't stamp my feet and throw a hissy fit in protest so I read this crap and took one for the team.  Wanna see my vitriol filled review?  Go *here*  All I know is I wish a publisher would pay me to eat my way through Italy, I'd do it with a smile as big as New York City!!

Happy Friday Bloggers, and have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Authors By The Alphabet July's Book

Ok ladies, our choice has been made -

Grave Sight (Harper Connelly Mysteries, Book 1)
Grave Sight
Charlaine Harris
310 pgs

Amazon Blurb -

Ever since Harper Connelly survived a zap from a lightning bolt, she's been able to find dead people, a skill that makes the protagonist in the first installment of Harris's new series a tad more bizarre than the mind-reading heroine of the author's Sookie Stackhouse books (Dead as a Doornail, etc.). Harper travels to the Ozark town of Sarne, Ark., to find a missing teenage girl's body, accompanied by her stepbrother, Tolliver, who acts as her manager and bodyguard and with whom she shares a thinly disguised physical attraction that they manage to keep at bay by engaging in casual sex with various partners. Finding the body takes no time at all, but leaving town afterward isn't so easy. When Harper's life is threatened and Tolliver ends up in jail on trumped-up charges, it quickly becomes apparent that something sinister is going on in Sarne. Harris delivers a knuckle-gnawing tale populated with well-developed, albeit edgy characters. A nifty puzzle toward the end will challenge the most jaded mystery buffs.

This was a great book!  I love the series and will be continuing with it.  I have both 1 and 2 in pdf form, if any of you would like to have it just let me know.  For the kindle, I have downloaded Calibre (just click on the name) so you can convert files to mobi. 

Great choice Christine!!  Belle you do have the letter I, so have fun seeking a book for us I look forward to our next author!

June's Wrap-Up

June was a good reading month for me.  I read everything I listed and an extra book as well.  Really enjoyed Dead Reckoning with Sookie, I can't believe there's only one more of those left.  Beneath A Blood Red Moon was ok, I have the second in that series so I'll read it to get it off my tbr challenge, but I'm not going to keep going with it.  Nice for quick fluff, but not a real grabber.  My two book club choices were really polar opposites!  My online club choice, Three Wishes, just didn't do it for me and was a misleading title to say the least.  My review is *HERE* if you'd like to know more, just be careful since our q-n-a is in this post as well and there are spoilers.  My other book club choice, Finishing Touches was really decent.  Definitely chick lit, but I enjoyed it and had a lot to say at our meeting.  My review is *HERE*Jacob by Jacquelyn Frank was a nice surprise, very easy reading and I'll keep going with the series when I want some light entertaining.  Vampire Seduction was ok, not quite what I'd have liked, but I have the second book that I will read and if it doesn't grab me then I'll end with that.  I ended the month with Mercy Thompson and book four, Iron Kissed.  I love this series and I loved this book, I can't wait to read the next which is on my book shelf!  My review is *HERE*  Mercy is an awesome character and I love the chemistry with all of them.  Fantastic.

What's up for July?  Well, I have started a great little book that was a kindle freebie last August - Flowers For Elvis.  This is wonderful Southern Lit that I really enjoy, I have such an affinity for southerners and the south, I teasingly say in a past life I was a Belle.  I really need to whittle this kindle tbr down, and hope my two challenges offer me that opportunity.  There are just way to many books in my E library that are floundering.  So far this is a gem.  For my book clubs, I have already read the books, so I don't have any bcc's here, kind of a free reading month ;)  Here is a view of this months list -

Flowers For ElvisA Little Death In DixieThe Sacrifice (Forbidden)
The Night SeasonMaybe This TimeCeremony in Death
The Thirteenth Tale: A Novel

So this is my list for July.  Sometimes I read them all, sometimes I change my mind and switch to something different, some are for challenges that I have been slacking at.  We shall see how the month progresses.  In the meantime I'm gonna try and kick some tbr booty!!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Iron Kissed

Iron Kissed (Mercy Thompson, Book 3)

Iron Kissed
Patricia Briggs
287 pgs.

Amazon Blurb -

Shape-shifter Mercy Thompson has a complex life, juggling two werewolf lovers and a job working for a fae mechanic; things get even more hectic when her boss and mentor is arrested for killing a citizen of the fae reservation. As the fae seem content to let him rot, Thompson takes it on herself to clear her friend's name, beginning a lone-wolf investigation that may cost her life. Briggs's third novel featuring Thompson (after Blood Bound) is another top-notch paranormal mystery; her well-balanced contemporary world, where humans live uneasily among werewolves and fae, is still a believably lived-in world; the ever-present threat of government legislation against nonhumans (though familiar to X-Men fans) adds weight to her paranormal elements, and thoughtfully researched mythology adds rich detail. Thompson is a sharp, strong heroine and her lycanthropic love triangle is honest and steamy. Briggs never shies from difficult material, and she moves effortlessly from werewolf pack psychology to human legal proceedings, making this a tense, nimble, crowd-pleasing page-turner.

Mercy's fae friend Zee has called in his favor.  He needs Mercy to enter the home's of murdered fae in her coyote form to try and sniff out the killer.  Finding out who it is and telling Zee, Zee is arrested for the murder of the murderer.  She knows he is innocent and Mercy being Mercy will not stay out of fae business till he's proven  innocent, even at the risk of her own life.

Of course that is never her only trouble.  She still has were Sam and Alpha were Adam vying for her love. Honey, one of the pack's females has explained that by not accepting Adams offer as his mate she is weakening the whole pack and takes the time to explain just what Adam's declaring that has done for her besides protecting Mercy from other weres killing her.  She'll need Adam's help more than once here as the fae put a hit out on her for seeing too much of their secrets, and she gets herself in a situation that nearly breaks her and had me tearing up for what she suffers. 

Mercy is just a fantastic female protagonist.  She is so strong, yet not obnoxiously so.  She makes just enough mistakes that you can't help but say "oh Mercy when will you put a cork in it?"  The other characters are great as well, Warren and Kyle are great friends, and Sam is not so bad himself.  You also get to see another side of Ben that redeems him completely in my eyes.  Briggs has really scored with this series, I read them with as much gusto and enjoyment as I do Sookie's books and can't wait to read #4, Bone Crossed which is sitting on my shelf.

4 1/2 cannolis

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