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Saturday, July 4, 2015

I Signed Up for the Chaotic Goddess Local Flavor Swap!

I love swaps! I have been so busy with work lately that I feel like I haven’t had a minute to relax. So as a treat to myself, I will be participating the Chaotic Goddess Local Flavor Swap. There are still a few more days to sign up. Sign ups close on July 6th. If you’re interested in participating, sign up here.

I have already started thinking about some cool stuff to put in my partner’s package!!!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Book Review: 50 Ways to Ruin a Rake by Jade Lee

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I didn’t like this book at all.  The cover was nice but the story left much to be desired.

SPOILER ALERT!!!!

I didn’t like the main characters.  At first Melinda starts out as a strong woman taking control of her destiny. She won’t give her uncle her cosmetic formula because she wants the money for herself so she can go to London and find someone who will love her so she isn’t stuck marrying her cousin Ronnie. This sounds good but several times throughout the story she says that Ronnie will probably be the one she winds up marrying even though she doesn’t want to. If she is strong enough to stand up to her family, why would she later give in and marry Ronnie?

Also, I didn’t like how she later is willing to give the formula over to a man so he can make lots of money and she would be his mistress. What happened to wanting the money so she can control her own life?

I also don’t like how she gives herself to Trevor when he is drunk and leaves when he is asleep and then gets mad when he doesn’t act like she wants. She also complains a lot about the duel that Trevor and Ronnie fought in the beginning of the book but then later makes a spectacle of herself. I felt that for a woman who was strong enough to fight for what she wanted – a chance to go to London to find someone to love her – she is awfully quick to give up on the man she loves and accept someone who doesn’t love her and never will.

As for Trevor, he is selfish and continuously refers to Melinda as being “beneath him”. He also caves to Eleanor’s suggestion and abandons her once they get to England. He also says no kissing but then keeps kissing her and being intimate. Even after he decided he wants her, he never has a conversation with Melinda to if that is what she wants. He just assumes to know what she wants because of the deal they made – which he convinced her to make. He should have known then that she didn’t really want the deal.

As far as the secondary characters, they were irritating. Her father was a jerk who doesn’t know his own daughter. Ronnie is an idiot. Her uncle is a bully. Eleanor acts like she is jealous and wants Trevor for herself.

I also don’t like how there was no epilogue to tell us if Trevor ever makes it right with his family.

*I received a free book in exchange for my unbiased review.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Book Review: Kissing Mr. Wrong by Kerri Carpenter

cover65505-medium Kissing Mr. Wrong by Kerri Carpenter was more of a novella than a novel. The writing was good. There were no errors. I loved the cover too. I wasn’t sure about the title though. There were not many mentions made in the book about John being “Mr. Wrong” so the title didn’t seem to fit too much.

I liked Vanessa and John very much. However, I did not like Jess, Vanessa’s friend, very much at first but I did get over that.

Even though this was a short story and there were some things that I didn’t like about this story (things I can’t get into without giving too much of the story away), I still felt this was a sweet story.

*I received a free book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Book Review: The Canterbury Sisters by Kim Wright

cover59076-medium About the book:

Che Milan’s life is falling apart. Not only has her longtime lover abruptly dumped her, but her eccentric, demanding mother has recently died. When an urn of ashes arrives, along with a note reminding Che of a half-forgotten promise to take her mother to Canterbury, Che finds herself reluctantly undertaking a pilgrimage.

Within days she joins a group of women who are walking the sixty miles from London to the shrine of Becket in Canterbury Cathedral, reputed to be the site of miracles. In the best Chaucer tradition, the women swap stories as they walk, each vying to see who can best describe true love. Che, who is a perfectionist and workaholic, loses her cell phone at the first stop and is forced to slow down and really notice the world around her, perhaps for the first time in years.

Through her adventures along the trail, Che finds herself opening up to new possibilities in life and discovers that the miracles of Canterbury can take surprising forms.

This was a beautiful book. The writing was superb and the story was touching, funny and thought provoking.

I loved Che. I felt a deep connection to her. I understood her connection to her mother but also her frustration with her mother and some of the choices that she had made. I also loved all of the secondary characters, the rest of the “Canterbury Sisters” and I loved how they evolved throughout the book and how the author used the telling of stories of love to show each person’s character. 

This book is perfect for women-for daughters and for mothers-because I think that the mother-daughter relationship is probably one of the most difficult relationships to understand. I think most women will enjoy this book because at one time or another, we all have complicated relationships with our mothers. Wright did a fantastic job illustrating that complication.

I have no criticism of this book at all. It was so good and I will recommend it to anyone who will listen to me.

*I received a free book in exchange for my unbiased review.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Book Review: Second Chance Summer by Jill Shalvis

cover62953-medium I absolutely love Jill Shalvis. She is amazing so when I got the chance to review Second Chance Summer, I jumped at the chance. I love the cover. I think it does a great job depicting Aiden. I also liked the writing and it the book was well edited.

As for the characters, I loved Lily. I felt that the author did a great job portraying all the aspects of Lily’s character; her pain, her passion, her love and sadness.

I loved Aiden as well. His dedication to his jobs and his family is well-portrayed.

With respect to the secondary characters, I loved Aiden’s mom. She is funny and doesn’t let anyone run her life. I also loved Jonathan, Lily’s best friend. I love how supportive he is of Lily and how he encourages her.

As for the rest of the Kincaid family, I love them. I love how they look out for each other and how they are a true family, regardless of the circumstances which I won’t get into here. Although, I feel sorry for Kenna as the only girl with all those brothers.

I would definitely recommend this book to others. I am looking forward to reading the rest of this series and getting to know the rest of the Kincaid family better. 

*I received a free copy of this book for my unbiased opinion.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Books & Bloggers Swap Reveal

I recently participated in Chaotic Bloggers Books & Bloggers Swap.  My partner was Emilie from http://www.emilielimaburke.com/

According to the Guideline of this swap, you should send three books:

  • A book from your partner's wishlist.
  • A book you have read and loved.
  • A book you haven't read, but think looks interesting

Emilie sent me:

  • A Mother’s Cry.
  • The Fault in Our Stars
  • Elsewhere.

She also sent a super sweet Mother’s Day card with a nice note.  Here are some pics.

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Thursday, April 2, 2015

Books 'n' Bloggers Swap



I am super excited.  Why?  Because I joined the Chaotic Goddess’ Books ‘n’ Bloggers Swap.  I am huge fan of swaps and I espscially love book swaps.  I have been wanting to join one of Chaotic Goddess’ swaps for some time but just wasn’t ever able to so when I saw that the Books ‘n’ Bloggers Swap was coming up, I actually put the sign up dates on my calendar with a reminder.   Now I am in the Swap and am really excited.

If you want to join the swap yourself, here is a link to the Chaotic Goddess Swaps Books ‘n’ Bloggers Signup Post 

I can't wait to get my partner's name so I can go book shopping.


Saturday, March 28, 2015

Book Review: Declan by Tiffany Lee

Declan

I received a free book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.

I loved this book.  Tiffany Lee is an amazing author and I can’t wait for more from her. 

I adored Lizbeth.  I like that she is a paralegal, since I am too.  I also liked that she is a survivor.  She is an amazing mom and woman.  I loved that regardless of what had happened to her, she wasn’t afraid to let Declan in.  I admired her for not ever giving up.

As for Declan, holy smokes, he is amazing.  He is sweet, fierce, loving, tender, incredibly sexy…the perfect package and just what Lizbeth needs so she can see that not all men are horrible. 

The plot was well thought out with believable characters. The writing was really good with very good editing.

I do wish that she had elaborated a little bit more on the bad guy and their connection to others in the book.  She told us some detail but never really clarified how that relationship had come to be and how it had evolved over the years.

I can’t wait for the next book and I love that the epilogue takes place seven years after but it doesn’t give away any details of the next book and how it turns out.  I am really excited to see what happens to Sophia but I really hope it doesn’t take seven years to get it all straightened out. 

This was a fabulous book and I will recommend it to all my romance reading friends as well as telling them to keep an eye on this amazing new author.

Book Review: Love Garage by Liz Crowe

Love Garage

I received a free copy of this book for my unbiased opinion. 

I did not like this book and I would not recommend it. I felt that the characters were very immature. No one talked to each other. The brothers resolved things by beating each other up and the couples just had sex. Even at the end of the book when they were supposed to have a conversation with the matriarch of the family, they still didn’t say anything. Considering none of the couples had a conversation, the “happily-ever-after” end seemed very far-fetched to me.

I also didn’t like that there were random sex scenes just thrown into the book, including a three-some that had nothing to do with the plot. This scene to me just highlighted how immature Aiden was.

I loved the little boy, Jeffrey. He brought character and humor to the book. Unfortunately, those were missing from the other characters.

I did like the way the author made sure that you knew what month it was and showed the passage of time. I also liked how she wrote about the complex relationships between the brothers and highlighted how different they were from each other.

I would have liked this book if it was just about one brother and his story and not about the whole family. It felt like the author was forcing the story to go one way when it really wanted to go another because there were too many players involved. If she had focused on Antony and his healing so he wasn’t so grumpy and could accept love, instead of bringing in Aiden and the love triangle plots, it would have been better. Honestly, because of Antony and Rosalee’s actions, I seriously disliked both of them and didn’t want them to have happy endings. I felt they were both selfish and didn’t care who they hurt in the process.

The author's writing style and prose is nice. She uses descriptions well so you can see the scene. Unfortunately, the character development was lacking in this book.

Friday, February 27, 2015

What I’ve Read from my Show Your Shelves Some Love Challenge

I took a week and a half off of work and during that time, I actually read some books on my To Be Read List in the Show Your Shelves Some Love: A No Book Buying Challenge! #ShelfLove

What I read from my shelf:

Barely a Lady; Never a Gentleman; Always a Temptress; Once a Rake; and Twice Tempted all by Eileen Dreyer.  These were really great. 

My goal was the Purple Belt which was 31 to 40 books.  I have read 5 so far so now I have 26 to 35 books left to meet my goal. 

As for book buying, I have done really well and have not purchased any books.  In April our local library is having a Friends of the Library book sale.  I allotted myself $30 to spend at the book sales.  They have two a year so now I have to decide whether to spend it all in April or divide it up.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

My To- Be-Read List

I finally finished gathering every book in the house that I haven’t read and taking pictures.  Here is what I will be reading in 2015 in the Show Your Shelves Some Love: A No Book Buying Challenge! #ShelfLove

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I guess I will work on a list but I at least wanted to post some pics.  The total count….55!!  I can’t believe I had 55 books on my bookshelves that I have not read yet.  Now, I just have to decide which book to read first????

This only includes my physical shelves.  I am going to have to work on my electronic shelves since I have Kindle books, BookShout books, Smashwords books….well, you get the idea.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

New Year, New Rear Fit Bottomed Challenge!!

I am supposed to be writing about breaking bad habits and failing but I am not really feeling that.  So instead, I am writing about the fact that I am participating in the New Year New Rear Fit Bottomed Challenge. 

new-year-new-rear-challengeDay 1 Challenge:  Pick a food resolution that works!

I am sticking with my no dairy unless it’s lactose free which I posted about earlier this week.

I have been lactose intolerant for as long as I can remember.  Unfortunately, I haven’t eaten the way I should for a long time.  I am not sure what excuse I have except stubbornness.  I didn’t want to stop eating the things that I like, like ice cream and cheese.  However, this stubbornness is catching up with me between stomach issues and, as I suspect, aggravation of my autoimmune disorder. Plus, I sure not feeling well is contributing to my emotional well-being, too.

But 2015 is the year I change all that!!!

To get started, I bought So Delicious Coconut Milk Yogurt.  I tried the blueberry yesterday. I really liked it.  I have tried soy yogurt before but I didn’t like it at all.  Not the case yesterday.  I really like the taste and the texture. I will be buying more So Delicious Yogurt.  And as a positive, I have coupons too.

I also bought So Delicious Coconut Milk “ice cream” in milk chocolate.  This is heavenly.  It tastes like a Mounds bar.  It is yummy.

With respect to cheese, I bought some but I have to make eating it a habit because I am not super excited about the texture yet. 

Monday, January 5, 2015

I got bad habits, bad habits

I have habits.  Bad ones.  I swear a lot but I don’t really care.  I;m from Massachusetts so I just consider it part of my Yankee flair.  I also peel my nails if one of them breaks or chips.  I really should file it and fix it but I’m usually too lazy.  I also think it’s because I used to bite my nails really bad for years and years so peeling them is kind of the same thing. 

The worst habit that I have though is not only a bad habit but it is also pretty yucky. 

I have plaque psoriasis.  It gets pretty bad on my elbows and my scalp.  My bad habit is that I pick at my psoriasis scaly skin.  When I pick my scalp, I also lose pieces of hair.  I’m okay right now because I have thick hair but I worry that some day that may change so I really need to stop doing that.  I guess I should add that to my “taking better care of myself” goal.NaBloPoMo_1214_465x287_HABIT

Friday, January 2, 2015

What I’ll be doing in 2015….

For many years I made resolutions and then I never followed up on them so last year I had this brilliant idea to stop making resolutions.  The only problem….now that 2014 is over, it feels like I got accomplished nothing.  I decided that also won’t work so I’m going back to setting some goals. 

2015 Goals

  • Apply to college to start in the Summer semester.
  • Make decision when it comes to work.
  • Take better care of myself by walking at least 8,000 steps a day and realistically add more until I am at over 10,000 steps; work on my flexibility by doing some yoga at least twice a week; after three months of yoga and watching what I eat and walking, transition to the Couch to 5K program; and stop eating things that are not nice to me.  (I am lactose intolerant and have been my whole life but I still ate ice cream and cheese and then just put up with being sick.  Now I resolve to stop doing that.)
  • Read some books.
  • Knit some stuff.
  • If I don’t get out of my dark place, resolve to go to a therapist.

None of these resolutions or goals are extremely difficult but I have been in a seriously blue place for the past year and I am being gentle with myself. 

The only time I have been successful with my resolutions is when I quit smoking.NaBloPoMo_1214_465x287_HABIT

Another Reading Challenge…its the 2015 Snagged @ The Library Challenge

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Since I have a Kindle I read a lot of books from my local library’s digital collection so when I read about the 2015 Snagged @ The Library Challenge hosted by The Book Nympho and The Geeky Blogger’s Book Blog, I knew I had to join in. 

Reading Challenge Details:

• Runs January 1, 2015 – December 31, 2015. You can join any time.
• The goal is to read at least twelve (12) books from the library. Twelve should be easy, that’s one a month. While twelve is the minimum, there is no maximum limit. See the different levels below and pick the one that works best for you.
• Any format will work for this challenge (print, ebook or audio) as long as you checked it out from the library it counts.
• Books can be any genre (fiction, nonfiction, romance, fantasy, mystery, thriller, horror, etc.).
• Crossovers from other reading challenges are allowed, including re-reads. The goal is to support your local library and save money.
• To join this challenge, grab the 2015 Snagged @ The Library Reading Challenge button and post this reading challenge on your blog to track your progress. Please include a link back to this sign-up post so others can join the reading challenge too. You do not have to be a book blogger to participate; you can track your progress on Goodreads (so as long as you have a dedicated shelf and Felicia has created a Goodreads group), Shelfari (I’ve created a Shelfari group. You can join and post your progress within the group), or BookLikes, etc., for the 2015 Snagged @ The Library Reading Challenge. The point of linking up is to have a place where people can see what you’re reading.

Levels:

    1. Dewey Decimal: read 12 books
    2. Thrifty Reader: read 24 books
    3. Overdrive Junkie: read 36 books
    4. Stalking the Bookstacks: read 50+ books

    Goal:  I am aiming for Overdrive Junkie.