Friday, March 30, 2007

This news made my day

There is an interesting interview with Elizabeth Hoyt at AAR. The whole interview is interesting but what really made me put on my dancing shoes was this question and answer:

Your three books are all loosely connected, about men who concern themselves with agriculture. Are there more princes waiting in the wings? What’s next for you?

The Serpent Prince ends my trilogy; I’m moving on to Hearts instead. I just finished Iron Heart, which I hope will be the first of a four-book series. It’s about four veterans of the French and Indian War, the women who are helping them deal with the aftermath of war, and a mystery surrounding the massacre of their regiment. And there will be a new fairytale in each story.

Now she doesn't say it, so I can only hope, but could these books perchance be set in Colonial America? Because for me, lord knows, there aren't nearly enough books with this setting. In bygone years there used to be quite a few but now they are very far and few between. Just to be clear, I'm not talking Westerns. I love and adore them too, but I'm talking stories that take place east of the Mississippi, when America was still a very new nation - or Canada for that matter - I love Kate Bridges books for example.
There have been some wonderful books I can name; the two books by Kate Rothwell, Something Wonderful and Somebody to Love. Wendy Lindstrom wrote four most excellent books. And a discussion of these kinds of books simply must include Pamela Clare's wonderful stories. Ride the Fire is firmly planted in my top five of all books.
Some other very honourable mention authors who tackled this setting
Meagan McKinney
Laura Lee Gurhke
Linda Francis Lee
Patrica Potter
Heather Graham
And probably many more whose names escape me at the moment but I'll remember as soon as I hit draft.
But - I've complained/mourned/wrote about this before. *sigh*

And speaking of Elizabeth Hoyt's newest, The Leopard Prince, it's finally shown up in the city (I've been checking daily) but in the Chapters on the other side of the city, a half hour's drive away. Arrrggghhhh.
This happens all the time with the stupid Chapters near me. They just don't get the same books as the other one! I think I'll have to write them a letter of complaint. It's so frustrating trying to make that decision. Do I have a bit more patience or do I start that long expensive treck across the city to get a book when the ones I already have overwhelm me with their vast numbers? What I should do is just settle back with what I do have and be a patient little romance reader.

'til later

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Writing class

Whew!! I got the last big writing assignment done for tonight's class. It was a toughie! We had to write a children's story from a childrens point of view. I'll put it up once I make the edits that the teacher and the rest of the class had. But in the meantime, after we read and critiqued everyone's stories, she had us think of someplace we could never go back to and then write descriptively about it. We didn't have very much time at all to write, and mine was very rough. But boy I had a hard time reading it out loud to the class.

This one is for Lisa and Nancy:

I loved the house I grew up in and it was a sad day when we moved to London.
The house was white, with black shutters, just a bungalo, but my parents had it specially built with many a custom touch. It was a corner house with a front door, a side door and a door that went directly into the basement at the rear of the house. When you first entered the front door, immediately to the left, was this huge indoor garden my dad had built for my mother. The rich smell of earth and fresh plants hit you immediately on entering. Until that is the cat we had decided to use it as his own personal litter box and the eye watering smell of cat urine got your attention.
To the right was the living room. It had hardwood floors and a fireplace with a wonderful mantle. It made a wonderful backdrop to the fairy tales my younger sisters and I would act out for our parents. Being the oldest I always had the lead part as well as being the writer and director (*side note here. Neither Lisa or Nancy seem to remember these skits we used to put on while I vividly remember being the dying little mermaid, dramtically giving up my life for the love of the prince who didn't even remember me. See, I've always loved romance*)
The kitchen was unique too. It had one of those odd folding down tables the our mom would put for meals and then fold back down to give her more kitchen space. But the best feature in the kitchen was the large wooden three shelf lazy susan located in a corner that had it's own door in front of it. Many's the time my younger sisters and I would get that lazy susan spinning as hard and as fast as we could while the food on the shelves went whipping off into the back inside corners, never to be seen again. Sometimes we would put the cat in there and set it spinning, much gentler of course, close the door and listen to him yowl. I'm sure the inside garden was his way of getting back at us humans.
The bathroom also had a very interesting feature. It had a laundry shoot that you could drop clothes down and they would land directly in the laundry room. On occasion we would also drop the cat down the laundry shoot, after of course making sure he landed in a deep basket of towels. Another reason for him to get even.
I forgot to mention by the side door in the kitchen there was a rather large milk box that would open from the outside and again from the inside. Sometimes my younger sisters and I would put the cat in the milkbox......

At that point she made us stop writing and read our stories to the class. They didn't blame the cat.

And in a very interesting note, the house I live in now and have for 25 years is a bungaloo. It's white with black shutters. It's on the corner of a crescent.......but no lazy susan, laundry shoot, milk box or inside garden.

'til later

Lost - Help!

As Cindy pointed out, Lost was on last night. And I missed it! I totally and completely forgot it was on. That’s what I get for leaving homework to the last minute.

So, any Lost watchers out there, what happened in last night’s episode? No detail is to small and I need spoilers!!! I know I cannot rest until I know what happened!

‘til later

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Recent Read

Chosen Prey by Cheyanne McCray

I’m still working on a standard way of doing recent reads. I’ll try this one out size and see how it goes.

Release date: April, 2007

Type: Romantic Suspense

Hotness level: Hot

Amazon Summary: Lyra Collins has made a life for herself in a sleepy artists’ community in Arizona. Having escaped from a cult five years ago, she keeps a low profile, making a living as an artist. But when a mysterious man with a dark, dangerous look appears on her doorstep, she knows it’s time to run again.
Former cop Dare Lancaster didn’t mean to lead a bunch of fanatical cult members straight to Lyra’s door. But now that he’s gotten her into this mess, he’s determined to get her out. The frantic heat their bodies generate whenever they’re together makes him want to save her…
Neal Barker’s grandfather was the first Prophet Jericho, and Neal now rules the Temple of Light commune unchecked. According to his visions, he and Lyra are destined to produce the new Messiah, so he will stop at nothing to make her his own. But soon Dare will discover just how far he’ll go to protect Lyra—and never let her go.

Why this one?: This is another book I can’t quite remember where I purchased it. I think I got it when I went to visit Cindy – just because the sales staff were so much nicer and helpful at her store than mine so I decided to reward them. * snort* We are so good with coming up with the weirdest justifications aren’t we. I have another Cheyanne McCray book in the TBR pile but this one just got my attention, can’t really say why, so it made it to the top of my pile.

My thoughts: I liked this one. She’s a new to me author and I think I’ll be checking out the other one I have by her. I think this her first RS and I was quite impressed. Near the beginning of the book Lyra makes quite a TSTL move and while I was thinking to myself “uh, oh – warning Will Robinson, warning” at the same time I could understand where she was coming from. Lyra had been running for years and she’s bound to be pretty leery of trusting the hero right off the bat. Unlike us, she didn’t know she was in the middle of a romance book and you can just naturally trust the hero. She skated on the edges a few times after that and I wasn’t sure whether Ms. Mcray would tip her over into the TSTL ocean, but luckily she didn’t.

The villain was real creepy – almost over the top creepy, but not quite, at least for me, and I have him designated as worst or best I’m not really sure which on the annual AAR ballot (see, I’m doing it smart this year – I’m filling it in as I go along).

I see that Anne Stuart's newest book also has a creepy cult theme. It will be interesting to compare the two of them.

There are also a number of secondary characters that I can see getting stories. Even though I’m not always a fan of series books, I will probably get a few in this one, at least the first one if it’s who I think it might be.

Grade: 4 out of 5

'til later

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

I haven’t said much lately about how I’m doing. Outwardly I seem to be doing very good. After Ron died I found myself without a job to fall back on; to distract me. I managed to find one through a temp agency. I wasn’t one of those dreaded temps that many employers fear. Instead, once I finished the placement, they wanted to hire me directly on a casual basis. Just last week I applied for a full-time permanent position which I have a very good chance of getting. From the start, if I do get it, I get 3 weeks vacation and I plan to do some traveling. Where or with whom I don’t know yet, but something will come up. I wonder if they are having another one of those reader/author cruises they had a few years ago? Something like that would be grand! I was talking with Ryan not long ago about traveling. Ron to put it lightly, was not a traveler. Ryan never understood that about him. I was talking about wanting to go on a cruise and he said I should go on a romance cruise. When I told him I would the next one, he was quite shocked they would have such a thing as he was only joking. The job I have is at a great place. I love working here, even though the people in my department have a propensity to spell my name Kristy all the time J.
I’m taking a second level writing course after taking and really enjoying the first one. I’m getting a little stressed over all the writing we have to do, but I am loving it.
Lisa and I built the ‘library’ and it’s a room all romance lovers would be pea green with envy over.
I’m in the process of redoing the kitchen from floor to ceiling. I’m just waiting for another kitchen place to come over for a quote.
I joined a bereavement group. We had our last ‘official’ meeting last week but we’ve all agreed to meet at least once a moth.
But under the surface it’s different. It’s like I’m sitting on a huge box where the monsters are inside trying to get out and I’m only barely keeping the lid on. The monsters are unbearable pain and loss and grief. They do escape once in a while but then I clamp the lid down real tight again. But they do escape sometimes in my dreams. I had a dream a couple of weeks ago that devastated me. I dreamed that Ron was there and everything that’s happened was just a dream. When I told him that I thought he had died, he laughed and said it was just a nightmare, that he was right there with me. Then I woke up and realized it wasn’t a dream. I was so wrecked I couldn’t go to work that day. I ended up chatting with Sybil for a good part of the day and although I didn’t tell her, she was of amazing help to me that day.
I can barely enter our bedroom. Right after Ron died, I moved to another room. Our bedroom is such a mess and it will take a whole day to clean it, but as of yet, I’m only able enter for a very short time before I have to leave. The other bedroom is much the same story. That’s where Ron kept all of his clothes and while I have an easier time going in that room, in fact I’ve taken over part of the closet – as if the other two aren’t enough, I still can’t go through the dresser or wardrobe that holds all his things.
I had a visitor from ‘Cable Company’, the ones who employee ‘Cable Guys’ wanting me to switch my home phone over to them. It meant some savings on the phone bill so I agreed. But the day they were supposed to come over to do the switch it occurred to me that if they did, they would be getting rid of the voice mail that has Ron’s voice. It’s not much – just Ron saying our last name, but I knew I wasn’t ready to let it go. A few people are a bit freaked out when they call and get Ron’s voice, but we didn’t take video’s, we only have some of those very old movies without sound. When the cable guy showed up, I asked him if we could save the voice mail and when he said no, I told him I couldn’t switch, not at this time anyway. I know it seems weird to a few people who get the voice mail, but it’s of comfort to me.
Whenever I really start thinking about Ron, I want to scream and howl at the pain of losing him, so I don’t think of him. Both boys were over on the weekend and we were talking about him a little bit. We’re starting to do that – just skirting around the edges, and Brent said he wants to retire as soon as he possibly can – at age 50. He said he didn’t want to end up like his dad, gone at age 52. The shock of hearing him say that really through me off, reminding me again of how young Ron was.
So because I’m the best person I know at beating myself up, I feel bad if I don’t think of Ron – like I’m somehow dishonouring him. But when I open up my thoughts of him, I have to close the door real quick before those monsters get out and consume me. But part of me wants to open the door and just feel the pain.
One of the coping mechanisms we learned at the bereavement group was throwing eggs at trees. That sounded real good to me. I think I’ll be buying a few dozen soon.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Dancing with the Stars - Week 2

I should have been writing. I should have been doing housework. I should have gone walking with my neighbour. I should be in bed now. I didn't do many of those things and obviously I'm not. What I did do though was watch Dancing with the Stars - my reality TV show. There are still to many to go through them all so instead I'll just be brief.

Best of the Night
Laila Ali and Max
She is just amazing! (and he's not so bad either!)

Worst of the Night
Shandi Finnessy and Brian
She might not be the worst dancer but I really don't like her *shudder*

Cutest of the Night
Billy Ray Cirus and Karina
I'm shallow, I know, but I just think he's hawt - and so out of his element

Most inspiring of the Night
Heather Mills and Jonathan
She was just amazing. She wowed me. And I'm still on Paul's side though

Honourable Mention of the Night
Apolo Anton Ohno and Julianne
They look so cute together and he can really dance!

Dancer whose body I would kill to have!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Edyta Sliwinska

'til later
Tis our own JMC's turn at Reader's Gab today. Go forth and read.

(meanwhile I must write - this time a children's story - from a child's point of view. This one is a toughie!)

'til later

Sunday, March 25, 2007

What a hoot!

Check out Jennie's blog. 'tis a riot

Books, Books, Wonderful Books

I was out today and *ahem* just happened to stop at a couple of stores. The first one was for a few groceries. They also have a small books section with less expensive books whereupon I picked up this little gem.
The Trickster by Kathleen Nance.

Where is she anyway? I really enjoy her books but she hasn't had a new one since Jigsaw.

Chapters was on the way home so how could I refuse? Even though Brent was at the house - he was busy anyway playing on my computer. I was hoping against hope to see The Leopard Prince on the shelves but alas it was not to be. And neither was Ice Blue, even though Cindy has her copy now.

But all was not lost.
I found a few other goodies to tide me over
and soothe my disappointment.
Ones such as Tough Enough by Michele Albert.

And then there were a couple of real squeals of deals
The Price of Pleasure and The Captain of all Pleasures by Kresley Cole - both on for $5.99 (Thank you Pocket Books)

And last but not least, I got this one. I wasn't planning on getting it, but it's getting great reviews.

And The He Kissed her by Laura Lee Guhrke

And now I still have at least two more I have to get! And that's not looking at the rest of my "have to get in May" books

'til later

Update on the cell phone

Well, my sister came over yesterday. We went kitchen shopping and then lunch and then back to my place where she took a look at the cell phone. Now she reads my blog so I shall be kind. I had to laugh afterwards once my frustration died down. She is a technical genius and managed to get it connected and signed up and everything. Now in order to appreciate this, you have to know Lisa. Nancy, our other sister, if she reads, this will be screaming with laughter and nodding her head. Lisa will agree 'cause she knows this about herself. She's - well - let's just say - a wee bit of a control freak. (in a good way Lisa, in a good way) with a dash of take charge attitude (in a good way Lisa, in a good way). She has helped and supported me immeasurably - Nance too. She started looking at the features and then things started turning weird/funny. She took over my phone! She went through the features muttering at each one "you don't want this one" then moved on "you don't want this one" moved on etc. She got to the part where you program in numbers and programed in her number - good, I wanted it. Then she told me how to program in Ryan's number. I got his name in and then wasn't sure how to get the number part in. She took the phone back and continued to program in the rest of the numbers I wanted in. And I still don't know how to do it.
Then she went to tunes, asked me what I wanted (I picked Cyndy Laupers Girls Just Want to Have Fun and Bon Jovi's Blaze of Glory) And then proceeded to put them in. I asked her at one point how she did and she told me she didn't have time to show me. She did a few other things to and then left.
I still have no idea how the friggin' thing works!!!! I tried working with it a little bit after she left and somehow managed to call Brent - when I wasn't trying to call numbers at all. Earlier I had done the same thing with Ryan went 'oops' and hung up when it dialed his number. He called back to see what I wanted and I just told him it was a mistake call. I have a feeling I'll be making a number of those.
Now I could read the instruction book - the huge little instruction book and eventually manage to figure it out. I think. But I learn much better when I actually see how it's done. Probably Ryan will be over today.

'til later

Friday, March 23, 2007

A Scary Package, A Recent Read and A Movie to See

A Scary Package

It happened again this week. I arrived home to discover a delivery company had tried to deliver a package but no one was home to sign for it. Only I have no idea where the pick-up depot was for this company and I wouldn't have a chance to get there until Saturday. But when I got home my neighbour had once again signed for it (nice to have retired neighbours!) and I got the package the next night.

She came in for a few minutes and at times I'm stupidly polite. I asked her if I could open it. She kind of gave me a strange look, laughed and said "it's you're house."
"Right!" I said. "I guess that's a dumb question." So I opened it. And what I found inside terrified me.
Nope - it wasn't filled with dead spiders - or live ones for that matter. It was worse. Much worse. It was a..........

Cell phone

The cell phone I currently have expires in May - analogue or something like that. The cable company sent me a notice that if I called a certain number I could get a new one free of charge or a different one for $30 and a three year plan. Well - who's going to go with option 2?
Now regular readers know that "Cable
Guy" and I have a unique relationship. I call, he answers, I sound like an idiot and I hang up shaking my head over what I dufus I was (like the time I called because I couldn't get into my email only to discover I had the caps on). Then I'm sure he and all the other "Cable Guys" laugh at me. So I had Ryan call to order the new phone. He doesn't know about the unique relationship "Cable Guy" and I have so he gave me a strange look and called. He answered one question and then handed the phone over to me. I had to deal with "Cable Guy" and it went OK. When I hung up Ryan said "now was that so hard?"
Well after that brief explanation, I opened the package to see it was the phone I had ordered. It was later in the day and I was tired, but as I looked at the phone and read the instructions, I began to recoil in horror.

It text messages!
It interfaces with M3P players
It has games
It has call forwarding
It has call waiting.

It has 2 cable cords
It has different ring tones that I can customize
It does something with the internet (
I couldn't read any further than that without breaking into a sweat)


I can only thank the stars above that it doesn't take pictures or movies. I was afraid that it might.
Now, most people (in fact probably everyone in the world but me) would think these fine things. But I still can't figure out how to work a simple basic cell phone. A few months ago, after standing in line for almost 2 hours to get a passport, I was finally at the desk to meet with the government passport lady to hand in all my stuff. I had forgotten to put down Ryan's phone number as contact person. I don't know Ryan's phone number. I don't know anyone's, in fact I'm lucky if I remember my own some days! I knew that Ryan's number was stored in the cell phone somewhere but I had no idea how to get to it. So I had to hand it over to the government passport lady to figure it out. Luckily she knew how to use cell phones and retrieved it for me - and surpringly enough they still gave me a passport after that embarrasing experience. It's not the first time I've depen
ded on the kindness of others to get cell phone numbers out of it.
So now - with all these features in the new cell phone, well it's not a pretty thought! And scariest thought of all, it's going to take a phone call to "Cable Guy" to activate it.
Thank goodness Lisa is coming over tomorrow. Even though she's younger, she understands cell phones. And I don't think she's scared of "Cable Guy".

A Recent Read

Voices of the Night by Lydia Joyce

From the publisher:

Desperate to escape the underworld's treacherous grasp, Maggie of King Street finds a patron in Charles Crossham, Lord Edgington, who must transform a street girl into a lady to win a high stakes wager. Charles has never met anyone like the fierce and ardent Maggie, and Maggie's defenses are useless against the seduction of the jaded lord.Their association quickly ignites into a consuming obsession. But both passion and the bet are threatened by a ruthless villain from Maggie's dark past, who has plans for her that imperil everything she's ever cared for-and her very life.

I loved The Veil of Night, Ms. Joyce's debut book. I wasn't quite as fond of The Music of the Night although I applauded the author for her unusual setting. I haven't read The Veil of Night. That brings us to Voices of the Night. Sometimes I think I almost sound like a broken record or a Pollyanna or something, but again, I really enjoyed this one. Ms. Joyce writes an historical with such a breath of fresh air! The writing is intelligent and the stories are intriguing. At first you think Charles is a bit of a fluff cake, making odd wagers just to amuse himself and get back at his sister, but as we get to know him, he had a good reason for the wager of making a 'silk purse out of a sow's ear'. And it's great to see his consciousness level raise as he begins to realize the difference in the privileged life he leads as opposed to those less fortunate. And Maggie King was a real treat. Brave, vulnerable, strong, frightened, she was such a different kind of heroine that normally populate historicals and I found myself routing for her that she would show them all and somehow defeat the fear that haunted her.
There's a great review at AAR, but I think I liked this one even better than the reviewer. This one is very good.

Grade: 4 out of 5

And A Movie to See

I've become very picky (cheap) in my old age and there are very few movies that I want to pay the cost of popcorn for. It's not the movie price I object to, it's the pop and popcorn!! But this is one I think I'll gladly pay for - both movie and popcorn. In fact if I can't find someone to go with - Lisa, Janice, Deb - anyone? I'll go by myself.

(for those on dial up)

Amazing Grace
Ioan Gruffudd (I adored him as Horatio Hornblower)

Gruffudd plays Wilberforce, who, as a Member of Parliament, navigated the world of 18th Century backroom politics to end the slave trade in the British Empire. Albert Finney plays John Newton, a confidante of Wilberforce who inspires him to pursue a life of service to humanity. Benedict Cumberbatch is William Pitt the Younger, England's youngest ever Prime Minister at the age of 24, who encourages his friend Wilberforce to take up the fight to outlaw slavery and supports him in his struggles in Parliament.
Elected to the House of Commons at the age of 21, and on his way to a successful political career, Wilberforce, over the course of two decades, took on the English establishment and persuaded those in power to end the inhumane trade of slavery.
Romola Garai plays Barbara Spooner, a beautiful and headstrong young woman who shares Wilberforce's passion for reform, and who becomes his wife after a whirlwind courtship. Youssou N'Dour is Olaudah Equiano. Born in Africa and sent as a slave to the Colonies, Equiano bought his freedom and made his home in London, where he wrote a best-selling account of his life and became a leading figure in the fight to end the slavery of his fellow countrymen.

'til later

Thursday, March 22, 2007

I have a germ!!

Now most people don’t get excited when they get a germ. I don’t like them either. But this germ is different! This one is a germ of an idea!

I’ve been taking these creative writing classes and loving them. But for the most part, it hasn’t really triggered my creative juices as for something new and different. I’ve been doing great as long as the teacher gives us some kind of direction, but as for original ideas, nada. But last week we were working on another one of those stories based on a picture and as I started mine, lightning struck and I had an idea for something more than just a short 1,500 word story. I wrote throughout all the time she gave us to come up with something and didn’t even get close to the picture part of it. I was too busy doing background. I read what I had when it came to my turn, and landed myself an extra assignment. She and the rest of the class wanted to know what else happened. So I finished it but as I was creatively writing along, I was thinking this had real potential. I’ll have to do mega work and send it to my own private critique person to see what she thinks. But for the first time since the first class started way back – I can feel something bubbling in the depths of my imagination. I don’t know if it will sputter out or not, but it’s further than I’ve gotten so far. So I think I like this germ!

'til later

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Back to normal - Friday

I hate this part of the week - so much to say, so little time!
I have a 500 word dialogue thing to do, a 1500 word story, 3 kids books to read, a story I started last class but didn't get done - all supposed to be done by tomorrow night. So far I have about 300 words of the dialogue thing and half a kids book read - and that's it! And Lost is on tonight. And I'm real busy at work so no time to work on it there either! Arrgghh - the pressure!

So - I should be back on Friday pm.

'til later

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

It's back!

I don't know how or why or for how long, but I noticed today my red background is back. A small thing to thrill me I know - but I'm easily pleased. So I'll just enjoy it until it mysteriously disappears again.

'til later

Monday, March 19, 2007

Dancing With The Stars

I haven't watched American Idol. Now that Rob and Amber are gone, I think I'm done with The Amazing Race and I have class the same night as Survivor. So my reality TV show of choice this season will be Dancing with the Stars. And it 's not because it has the best eye candy. Nope that's not it. Really. It isn't!

So - I watched the first episode tonight and here are my thoughts.

Billy Ray Cyrus did awful. But now that the mullet is gone, he is kind of cute. Not that I noticed or anything. Nope - I didn't. Notice that is.

The first one to go me thinks should be Leeza Gibbons. I didn't think she did that good.

Someone who really surprised me was Laila Ali! She and her partner Max were pretty darned good. And not that I noticed her partner Max is adorable. Nope, didn't notice that either.

Another star who I thought was not to shabby was Joey Fatone.
Now I never really listened to NSYNC so he is a bit of a mystery.
And it is nice that his partner is Kym Johnstone who got paired with Jerry Springer last season.

But for me, the winner tonight was Apolo Anton Ohno.
Not that I noticed what a cutie he was. Can't say as I noticed that.

And last but not least, even though I favour Paul - he was always the cutest Beatle, Heather Mills did pretty good.

And finally, in case you're wondering, no, I didn't notice Alec Marco and how sexy he was. Did not pay attention at all I'm afraid.

'til later

Slipin' in real quick

It's my turn at Readers's Gab at Access Romance today.

'til later

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Now what I was really thinking it was

Further to my post on Sugar Daddy, I mentioned that I thought I knew what the package was and what it wasn't. Well, when I got home yesterday there was a message on my machine from my next door neighbour saying they had a package there for me. The post person had tried delivering it but I wasn't home so my neighbour said they would sign for it.
I wasted no time in heading next door to pick up my parcel and it was what I thought the other one was but wasn't.

Time to do that happy dance again!!

What was in the package was the books from Jennie!!


The books included Nine Coaches Waiting and Touch Not the Cat by Mary Stewart. She had such an effect on my when I was younger. I loved her books and I'm really looking forward to revisiting her again. Mrs. Drew Plays Her Hand by Carla Kelly. I just recently bought Beau Carusoe so I'm really looking forward to diving into her books. She seems to be universally loved. And there is this really HUGE book - the complete works of Jane Austen. I think I'm about the only one who has never read her before - don't know how I missed that. I've read pretty much all the other "greats". And Jennie also sent a bonus book!! An ARC copy of the third book in a series that I've been enjoying.

Thanks Jenny - what a great way to end a week!!!!

I wanted to post this last night - but then Blogger was being Blogger. *sigh*

'til later

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Recent Reads

Erinsong by Diana Groe

In this addiction I seem to have to buying books there are many a time I pick one up and wonder when, where and why I bought it. Such is the case with this one. For the life of me I don't remember buying it. And I'm not sure, with so many in my TBR pile, why I even picked it to read! But I sure am glad I did.

From the back blurb:
An Irish princess. A Viking warrior. His people's raids on hter country should have made them bitter enemies. But when he washed up on her beach with no memory of his life, Brenna found herself drawn to the handsome stranger. His kind words and gentle touch helped ease memories of brutality and inflame a passion she never thought possible. She longed for his hands to caress her body the same way they ran over the gleaming wood of his ship. But even their desire can't deny the secrets of the past. And as they travel through the land of Erin on a quest that could change the course of history, long-ago betrayals and treachery threaten to destroy the haven they've found in each other's arms.

So - I obviously didn't get it because of that. I think maybe I read the DIK review at AAR. Or maybe I was tempted because it sounded different, a Viking romance by a new-to-me author. Whatever it was that prompted me to get this one though, I did good.
Jorland, the hero, is a Norseman washed up on the shore in front of Brenna the heroine and her sister, Moira. I knew I was in for a treat when Brenna stabs him in the leg when he grabs hold of her sister. And he is impressed with her use of curse words. These two together are wonderful. Although it's the old amnesia gimmick, this one really works. Jorland is a kind and compassionate hero and surprisingly Beta for all this strengths. Brenna is sharp and intelligent and she makes a great heroine. The tension between them is palatable.
And Ms. Groe throws a twist in near the end that I wasn't expecting. I like that in a book. This is the second one in a series, but it works most excellently as a stand alone - I know because I hadn't read the first one. I was delighted to find the first one on the weekend.
It's a refreshing read and it is So Nice to read a historical set in this time period and location. It's wonderful thing to find a new author who can write so well. It looks like she has another one coming out in July and I know it's now on my "gotta get it" list.
Cindy - I know you have this one. (she bought it because I told her it was good)

Grade 4 1/2 out of 5

In other news, I had the funniest conversation with my youngest son on the weekend.

Ryan: (while looking through my movies) What are you doing with this movie?

Me: What movie?

Ryan: (holding it up) Underworld. You don't watch these kinds of movies.

Me: Who says I don't?

Ryan: It's about vampires.

Me: Yea, so? It has werewolves too.

Ryan: But you don't watch those kind.

Me: Hey! I step outside of my box on occasion. I read vampire and werewolf books.

Ryan: *grunt*

Me: Have you seen it?

Ryan: Yea, a bunch of times. What? Have you got a thing for Kate Beckinsale?

Me: No, Scott Speedman (remembering Bam's crush on him before she fell tossed him in the gutter for Superman and The Green Arrow)

Ryan: *grunt*

I love it when I shock my two sons!

And no - I haven't actually seen it yet. Brent the oldest was surprised when he saw my copy of History of Violence (which I haven't watched either). They had a bin of previously viewed movies at Walmart the other day at a most excellent price and I got Underworld, The History of Violence and Libertine (with Johnny Depp) all of which I admit are outside my box.

Now back to writing. I've got two assignments due soon!

'til later

Monday, March 12, 2007

A mysterious package

Earlier I said I had a funny story to tell. Well - it started on Wednesday when I got home. I have the group I go to right from work so was late when I got home. There was a note from Fed Ex that there was a parcel, but since there was no one to sign for it, they would try and deliver it the next day. It was too late to call them and on Thursday night I had the writing class right after work. But sure enough when I got home Thursday night there was another notice from them. And they also said they would try the next day. Well, again I work so no one was home. I thought I had taken the notice to work with me to call them, but when I looked in my purse it wasn't there. I did call anyway, but they couldn't track my parcel without the tracking number. When I got home on Friday, there was a voice mail saying they had tried to deliver the package but no one was home (like I knew that) They said I could pick it up between the hours of 7 and 7. By this time it was almost 7. I had stopped a book stores before I went home.
So I planned on picking it up before I left for Cindy's on Saturday. The drop off isn't far from where I live.
I "thought" I knew what might be in the package so while I was curious, I wasn't burning up with it or anything.
So off I went to the depot and got the package. I was then on my way to Cindy's. We are talking highway here. The highway I happen to drive a leeetle bit faster than the posted speed limit. I happened to glance at the package sitting on the seat next to me (very briefly of course because I was going a leeeeetle faster than the speed limit) and caught the name Lisa Kleypas.
Well - Holy Shit! That's not what I thought it was!! So what do I do now I thought? I'm barreling down the highway, and I can't open it. It's a busy highway and all and there is a lot of traffic on the highway. Do I pull over? And then I thought it would be fun to share my excitement with a fellow romance reader.
I drove faster. That's what I did. While I normally drive about 20 kilometers over the speed limit (as do most people - really they do). Now I was driving 30 and at times 40 kilo's over. And no one passed me, let me tell you!
I got to Cindy's, package in hand all ready to run up to her door. I had to take a couple of minutes to untangle from the M3p player I'd been listening too (I tend to drive faster on the fast songs and there were a lot of them) and was all set to run and open. But her sidewalk was slippery. So I had to duck toe it up to her front door *g*. Of course as soon as I got my coat off, we headed to her kitchen so I could open the package and........


You will of course notice the little autographed stamp on the top left hand corner. So now I have my very own autographed copy to hug and to squeeze, very gently of course.

So - a hearty shout out and thank you to Lisa Kleypas for sending me this one. Cindy was almost as excited as I was.

'til later
Today it's Robin's turn at Readers Gab at Access Romance. Go see and go read *g*

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Book Buying Bonanza

Now, I'm dating myself here, but there used to be this cartoon I watched when I was a young'un, Quik Draw McGraw. If my heart didn't already belong to Mighty Mouse, I might have gone for that gun totin' horse.

He had this pet dog and when he gave this pet dog snacks, this dog would go into spasms of ectasy. Now looking back with a much more jaundiced air, I think there was probably more than just meat byproducts in the biscuit to have such an effect. Nevertheless, that's how I'm kind of feeling right now.
I've gone on a bookbuying spree, the likes I've never had before! Here is what I've picked up in the past two days!!!

Innocence and Impropriety by Diane Gaston

I've read her other books and really enjoyed them, so I just had to get this one!

Beau Carusoe by Carla Kelly

I've hears such wonderful things about her books and I think I have one somewhere around, but I thought I'd give this one a shot

Games of Command by Linnea Sinclair
I have a couple of others by her. I haven't read them yet,
but Devon is a huge fan of Ms. Sinclair and although they seem to be calling them "Science Fiction Romance" these days, I love a good Futuristic

The Sword and the Sheath by Bonnie Vanak
I don't think it's any surprise that I got this one. I've loved her two previous books so this one was for sure a TBB.

Chosen Prey by Cheyene McCray
I'm not sure what made me buy this one. I haven't heard a thing about it. I do have another one by her but again, it remains in the TBR pile

One Real Cowboy by Janette Kenny
It's a Western! It's on sale! Need I say more?

Now - funny story about these next few. I checked out Chapters and they said they were in stock. Being in a bit of a hurry, I just picked up the book along with the rest of them and hurried home so I could catalogue in my spreadsheet. I love doing that *g*. It wasn't until I got home and took the book out, I realized that I had the wrong book! I had purchased Slave to Sensation instead of Visions of Heat by Nalini Singh. Well - I was going out for coffee on Saturday morning and just by happy circumstance, Chapters was right next to the coffee shop. So I returned Slave to Sensation (which I already had) and looked for the right book this time. They didn't have it on the shelf (grrr - it's awful being a frustrated book buyer). So instead, I got another one I was thinking of getting.

Then later, in a case of real delayed reaction, while on my way to visit Cindy (more on that in a moment) it dawned on me that I had picked up Sighs Matter instead the one I really wanted,

Arousing Suspicions by Marianne Stillings.
Now I ask you, what would be a visit with two avid romance readers be without a trip to a book store.?I had already checked and the other ones I wanted that I couldn't find here, were at the Chapters in Cindy's city. So I returned the wrong book and planned on getting the right one. I read her first one, Damsel in this Dress, and while very disappointed in it, it very good potential. So I wanted to read this one to see if I could see if the potential lived up to what I hoped.

Well, it wasn't on the shelf either and neither was this next one,
Voices of the Night by Lydia Joyce.
I've read her other books and quite enjoyed them.
Well, the sales clerk was so very helpful, much better than the ones near me, that I also picked up a couple more that were on my maybe list.

My Favourite Earthling by Susan Grant
Her new titles sound awful and I think they are
lighter than her first few books, but I've loved of them so I had to give this one a try.

And because the sales clerk was so nice, I picked up on more
isn't it a great thing how we can justify to ourselves?
Blood Secrets by Viva Anna
I've been wanting to try the Nocturne Line and I've seen
this one around.

Maidensong by Diana Groe
And I was also dancing the happy dance when I saw this next one. Not that you would know because my currently reading never matches what it says I am, but I'm reading and loving Erinsong. So when I saw this one on the shelves - well since it's not on the shelves here and I was planning on ordering it online - I was ecstatic when I found it.

Now for more on my visit with Cindy. I (of course) had a great time. I saw her book room that Bob built and it's even better in person than in the pictures! And I also walked on her redesigned bathroom floor! Big deal you might be thinking, but this floor is coooooool . Well, not cool, because it's heated! It does wonderful things to your feet! While I was there, we got to exchanging information on how to do blog stuff. You may have noticed an overabundance on pictures! She showed me how to do them. And she also showed me (well in fact she did it) how to get the banner that Mailyn did for me. *huge grin*. So I've gone a bit wild here. I showed her how to do the pictures on the side bar, so it was a mutual exchange of blogging information :)
I have other huge news - book wise that only Cindy knows so far, but I'll share it next post. Until then, I'm headed back to bed to try and get that hour back!

'til later

Since I did this early this morning on an hour's less sleep, I did forget to mention what Cindy pointed out! Cindy, Bob (who is such a great guy - Cindy is so lucky) and I also hit IKEA! Boy do I love that store. There isn't one near me, so it's usually quite a treat and a bit of a money drain when I do get there. I saw the greatest kitchen display. I don't know if I've mentioned, but I'm having the kitchen redone - floor to ceiling - and I mean that literally! The ceiling is stucco (yuck - we didn't do it!). I didn't get much - but I did get a new coffee and end tables (which I put together myself I might add with a little bit of elbow grease from Ryan) and a few books ends for the 'library.' Of course hindsight being 20/20, now there's all kinds of things I'm thinking I should have got.

Friday, March 09, 2007

It's a scary thing!

Using my camera, I'm just making sure I still remember how to do this.

This is my pile of TBR's that haven't made it downstairs to the 'library'.

And of course here's a picture of the Princess.

(And *sigh* I miss blogger bot)

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Latest Writing Assignment

This is one of the bigger ones we have to do. It's 1,500 words and I still haven't figured out the cut feature. So - it's kind of longer than a normal post for me - but here goes:

“I’m done.”

As Allie Hamilton sat at the kitchen table later that night she was amazed that two such short little words could change the course of her life. She absently stirred the coffee that sat in front of her, heavily laced with Bailey’s; such stunning news called for some kind of break from routine and a dollop or two on a week night was just the thing. She thought back on the conversation she had had earlier with her husband of twenty-seven years.

“I’m done!” David announced while still sitting at the table after dinner, as Allie cleaned up.

“You’re done with what?” Allie had asked absently while wiping down the counter and silently resented the fact he just sat there. She had worked hard that day, too.

“I’m done being married. I’m done with this house. I’m done with this life and I’m done with you.”

Allie immediately stopped what she was doing and stared at him.

“What do you mean, you’re done? What on earth are you talking about?”

“Let’s face it, Allie,” he replied. “This marriage of ours isn’t working anymore. It hasn’t worked for a while now. We’ve just been going through the motions. In fact, it was over years ago but I stayed for the girls. Now that they’re both grown and out of the house, I don’t see any reason to keep up the charade. Do you? I’m still young. You’re still young. There’s time yet to enjoy life and I haven’t been enjoying life with you for some time now.”

Allie stared at this man she thought she knew. She noted absently that he was still quite handsome. He had that honed look about him that had first attracted her so many years ago. His hair, dark blond with stands of wheat colour mixed in was shorter now, only had a few strands of gray that didn’t really show. His blue eyes that had fascinated her from the beginning with their humorous twinkle didn’t have that same gleam in them anymore and she suddenly realized she hadn’t seen it for a while now. He kept himself in shape with his daily visits to the gym after work and his six foot body showed it. Allie on the other hand had let herself go a bit. She didn’t have the time what with work and taking care of her aging mother. They used to go together but it had been a long while since she had the time or the energy for a gym workout.

“Where is this coming from?” she asked him, incredulously. “Yes, we haven’t had the time to spend together the way we should have, but you know the reasons for that. Mom takes up so much of my time these days. You sure don’t help out much.”

“Look,” he said. “There’s no point in making this ugly. Let’s just say we’ve run our course and it’s time to move on.”

“Move on?” Allie repeated in disbelief.

After a moment’s silence, she slowly understood.

“Oh shit!” Allie finally said although she seldom cursed. “There’s someone else isn’t there? I can’t believe this! You’ve been cheating on me, haven’t you? David, you wouldn’t do that to us, to me. Tell me I’m wrong here!”

David then did what he always did. He twisted things so that he didn’t appear to be in the wrong.

“Don’t pull that hurt surprised game with me,” he answered. “How much time have you been willing to put into this so called marriage? When was the last time you spent any time looking after my needs? You spend so much time looking after your mother or the girls that I’m just an after-thought to you. I need more than to be a lousy third on your list. I need to matter more than that to someone. And I found someone. What’s wrong with that? You obviously don’t seem to care anymore. It’s time I took care of myself now since you don’t anymore.”

“Where did you meet her?” Allie asked.

“Look, what difference does it make?” David said with annoyance. “The fact is that there’s someone willing to put me first.”

“It makes a difference to me,” Allie replied. “I think I’m entitled to that at least. Was it at the gym? You seem to be spending a lot of time there lately.”

“I said it doesn’t matter where I met her. But if you must know, then, yes, it’s someone I met at the gym. If you had been willing to spend time with me it probably wouldn’t have happened,” David replied

“Oh, please,” Allie said. “Don’t even start with that. And just out of curiosity here, how old would this “other woman” be?”

“Her age doesn’t have anything to do with this,” he said running his hand impatiently through his hair. “As I already said, I matter to her and I don’t to you anymore.”

“Ah younger then; and I think it’s your nice hefty bank account that matters, too. How lucky for her she got herself a nice rich ad executive.” Allie’s voice rose slightly, “You know what it’s been like for me. I have to take care of Mom. She’s sick. She has Alzheimer’s and I’m trying to help her. The system stinks and it’s taking most of my energy trying to fight it and get her help. On top of that I had to help Beth with the wedding and I work full time. Just because I don’t have the time I used to, you don’t just give up on us. I love you and I thought you loved me.”

“I did,” David said. “But you let it die of neglect. It’s only natural I found someone else. So, like I said, I’m done. I’m going out now and I won’t be home. I’ll come back and pack up my stuff on the weekend. Do what you want with the house. You can have it. I just want out.”

With that he got up and slammed the door on his way out as she threw the dishtowel after him.

Sitting there later drinking her coffee, Allie tried gathering her thoughts. She was in shock. Allie realized that David had a selfish streak in him, but she had accepted it over the years. She didn’t know who she could talk to. Obviously she couldn’t talk to her mother. Half the time Allie’s mom didn’t know who she was anymore. It wouldn’t be fair to bring the girls into this. As upset as she was at David, Allie knew that the girls loved him and she knew that he loved them. She didn’t want to come between that. Allie didn’t want to tell any of her friend’s, at least not until she had it sorted out herself. They all thought that David was a terrific husband. She had spent most of her life with him. They had married young. She had been only twenty three at the time. In a few months she would be fifty. A young fifty she thought with a sad smile. And while she had let herself go in the past few months she was still in pretty good shape. She had been kept busy trying to find the right place for her mother. Sure she needed to lose the fifteen pounds or so she had put on. And she really needed to have her hair coloured and styled again. She just hadn’t had time lately. But other than a few added pounds and a bit too much gray for her comfort, she knew she was still nice-looking. Her hair, when coloured and cut properly was thick and was almost a natural dark auburn. Her eyes, large and chocolate brown were her best feature.

But the more she thought about what David had said and done, the angrier she got. She had lived with adultery. Her father, although dead now, had been a serial cheater on her mother and she thought David would have understood how distraught she was by it. But apparently not she thought.

If it had been for any other reason, she might have forgiven David, if he ever wanted forgiveness that was. He wasn’t the type to admit to mistakes, though. But adultery was a Can’t Forgive in Allie’s opinion. Having seen the devastation it wrought with her mother, she had no intention of suffering the same thing. Things hadn’t been that good between them lately. She was willing to take her share of the blame. But he could have tried harder too. So, she decided, her old life was over. She would take some time and be angry as hell at David. She would mourn losing what they had once had. There wasn’t anything wrong with that, she figured. She thought she should be feeling something more. Shouldn’t there have been more drama at the end of a marriage, more than those two words? David had one thing right though she slowly began to realize. She had stopped caring as the realization slowly crept over her as she sat slowly drinking her laced coffee. Once she got past the shock and the hurt, she realized that the thought of starting over wasn’t so bad after all. She was still attractive. She had a good job. She would make time for herself. So she decided to take a page out of David’s book. Instead of being the nurturer, the one who took care of everyone else’s needs, she was going to take care of hers for a while. She realized it had been a long time since she had done that.

Who knew what the second half of her life would be like? But she knew she would soon be finding out.

It was critique night when we read everyone's and critique it.
This is what the teacher said:

"Good story. Very realistic dialogue & thoughts. Well written & I'm glad she was strong enough to figure out she's better off without the jerk. (and she says she's not a romance fan *g*). It was easy to connect with your main character. Good work"

Other comments from the class:

"Good for her! The change in this character is significant! Well done!"

"Good dialogue. David seem a little too stiff though."

"Agree - very unloveable"

(of course this is the point :-) Cindy helped me with some editing and I told her what else happens down the road)

"Happy this lady ended up finally thinking about herself. Moved nicely. Easy to identify with the main character."

"Well thought out, it moved along naturally"

"That was excellent. If you get the chance, see the movie 'The Truth about Love.' This story reminded me of it."

Then later when we were discussing our stories, the teacher made mention of "feeling" the characters. Then she said Kristie's is a good example of feeling what they are feeling. I must say I preened at that one - in a completely unobvious way of course *g*

Now I'm going to try and get the swollen head back down to normal.
There is one guy in the class, a big burly football coach and man can he write!! He blows me away with his writing. He wants to write a novel and I think he can really do it! Not a romance novel - his story was a detective type story - but wow was it good!

'til later

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Things that annoy me

I'm feeling bitchy today. Not a whole lot of bitchy - just a bit, so I don't have a whole of things that are annoying me - but the ones that are, are really getting to me.

1) Books not on the shelves when they are supposed to be!!
I have about 5 or 6 books I've been checking daily for. I like, no - I need instant gratification when it comes to book buying and I'm just not getting it. Chapters "says" a couple of the books I'm looking for are at the Chapters at the other end of the city. But it's a half hour drive and with gas prices being what they are ($1.04.5 a litre! They have NEVER been this high in the city before) my need for instant gratification is warring with my cheapness - and my cheapness is winning damn it all!

2) Authors who don't update their websites!!
I've been waiting for Legacy of Stone to come out. It was supposed to be out in March but Chapters says "temporarily unable to order" so I checked out her website to see what I could see. And it hasn't been updated in forever. It's an awesome website, but the fact that it hasn't been updated since before last August kind of negates a good website. There is still a contest that will be drawn in August 2006 for pete's sake. And FWIW - I did find something on Amazon. It looks like the book isn't coming out now until December 2007! What gives?

3) ET and all those other "entertainment" shows!!
Entertainment if you care about the continuing saga of Anna Nicole Smith that is. Let it go Mary, I beg you LET IT GO.

So - as you can see there isn't much. That little bit sure is annoying me though.

'til later

Ooops - one more
Word Verification
Why do they have to have 13 or 14 letters in them that all look the same and are all squiggly. I don't think I got one on the first attempt tonight!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Recent Read

Lover Eternal by J.R. Ward

Since this series is the hottest thing going, I thought I would do a different kind of review this time. Rosario has done it before and I really enjoyed it. I’ve resisted reading these books – just to be stubborn, but I’m finally giving in. If so many people love them (and I’m counting the normal readers – not the rabid kind who tattoo themselves and visit popular blogs and post stupid, defensive posts) then there has to be something to them. I read Dark Lover and enjoyed it but that was a while ago and I’m not normally fond of vampire romance.

I started this one when it first came out and could only read the beginning before putting it down. But I decided to give it another shot. I’ll give my thoughts as I read along until I take a break.

Page 75: Mary seems like a rather bland heroine to me. She’s described as average in looks and she comes across as a bit to nicey nice for me. Rhage is an asshole. I don’t care if he does make Brad Pitt seem average in his looks. He’s a jerk and a user. He has just ordered Bella (whom he doesn’t even deign to call by name – he just calls her female) to get Mary to meet him. I don’t like the way he uses Bella. The whole group, while I can understand, need to get John Mathew since he is at a crucial part in his life, are jerks. Yes, I understand they are the warriors, but I don’t really like the collective arrogance they have.

I like Bella. I like John Mathew. Butch seems out of his league and a Brotherhood wannabe groupie and almost pet.

Mr. X and Mr. O give me a severe case of the creeps and I may have to skip the parts they are in.

I’m really disliking all the branding that’s going on.

Now – back to the book.

Page 112: OK – Rhage is beginning to grow on me a little bit after the date he had with Mary and after his confession to Thor.

Page 182: – I’m starting to feel Rhage now. He’s stuck at Mary’s and he is feeding her (food that is). Mary is still a bit to bland to warm up to yet though. I haven’t seen Bella again yet and I suppose Butch is gaining his place.

Page 235: All right – he’s really back in my bad book now. BIG TIME. He’s just gotten back to Mary after his night of screwing other women. I don’t give a rat’s ass how guilty and bad he feels. He loves Mary and he cheated on her! I’m starting to like Mary more now and I hope she makes him SUFFER! This is a biggie for me – when the hero is already emotionally committed to the heroine and he goes after someone else. I know he’s suffering and scared of the dragon – but he done her wrong!!! One thing going for it so far though is – no blood drinking. And these aren’t dead vampires – just another kind of race.

Page 331: Oh, all right. I’ve mostly forgiven him. He was very remorseful and he did feel real bad. And he did go through that ritual thing when all the brothers did their thing to him. I felt bad for Zsadist. I really hate the Scribe Virgin though. I don’t think I’m going to like her at all in this series. I just got past the first “feeding” with Rhage, Mary and Layla and it wasn’t that bad. And of note – I put down that I read this book in my spreadsheet. While not done yet, it’s a sign that this will be not a DNF book.

Page 376: Run Bella Run!!! Now I’ve seen more of Bella and Zsadist and *sigh* I’m glad I have the next one. And I’m won back over again. I loved what Rhage did with the cherry stem.

Page 441: The end

OK – I get it now. She’s converted me. I’m still not getting a tattoo and I still have no intention of joining the message board and becoming a “Cellie” And I will NEVER call her The Warden, but she managed to hook me and hook me good.

And I’m hoping that Chapters, which has 48 copies of Lover Revealed is still open ‘cause that’s where I’m headed

Grade 5 out of 5

'til later


They were and I did.

And yet another one

by Men Without Hats that I loved in it's day - Hey Men.

And since we are back in the 80's

Here is an oldie but goodie that's good for a laugh.

Don't You Want Me? by The Human League

To soothe the inner 80's bubble gum lover in me

And for your enjoyment while I work on my latest review

Pop Goes the World. This is the same group who sing Safety Dance - Men Without Hats

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Recent Reads

The Color of Love by Sandra Kitt

I bought this one based on Keishon's review. When both Karen S and Renee said they really enjoyed it, that made it 3 for 3 for me.

And WOW. This book blew me away!

Leah Downey is a young black woman who has a great job designing book covers. Jason Horn is a white cop who works with troubled youths. They meet when Jason is sitting on Leah's porch and it's obvious to Leah and her sister Gail that something is not quite right about this man. Despite that Leah offers him a cup of coffee and some weeks later he comes back to thank her for her thoughtfulness. Despite themselves they are drawn to each other and slowly work through the obstacles that confront them.
This is a rather slow book, but that works in it's favour. We get to know the characters slowly over time. Leah is a woman riddled with insecurities, many dating from a horrible experience she went through years earlier that has cast a large shadow over who she is now. Jason is a very decent guy who has made some mistakes in his life and still regrets and suffers from them. He is dealing with the tragic death of his son and wonders if he can love another woman after marriage fell apart years earlier.

What makes this book so incredible to me is that for the first time in longer than I can remember this book made me think. Sandra Kitt is very clear on the obstacles they will face as an interracial couple. Gail is dead set against her sister dating a white cop. Joe, Jason's black partner is dead set against him dating a black girl. Most of the people they know are against it. Leah seems to have more of an awarness of the problems that Jason does at first, but that's because she has lived with prejudice more than he has. But eventually, Jason begins to question whether it's worth it and Leah has been questioning it all along. But their love and their friendship and their attraction to each other cannot be ignored and they decide to live for themselves instead of what others have to say.
I've probably read better books, but I've never read one before that made me question things the way this one has.
As I said this book really made me think. I wondered if it was really like this and came to the conclussion that Sandra Kitt must know and that it really can be this difficult. And that made me very sad. The book was written in 1995 and I wonder if it's still as difficult for an interracial couple today as it was twelve years ago. And the fact that it might be makes me even sadder. Why should people who love each other have to face this kind of thing? It just seems so wrong to me. A few years ago I worked with a young woman who was in an interracial marriage. The first time her husband come into the office and saw he was white, I was a bit surprised and then I just felt 'good for them'. And that was about all. I see Halle Berry and Gabriel Aubry and think good for them. Then I think he better be making her happy, cause she deserves it. And then I think boy are they a beautiful couple.
I took note of the other Sandra Kitt books that were mentioned in the comments of Keishon's review and I will certainly be looking for them.
Thanks Keishon. This one was truly wonderful and I can see why you've read it millions of times.
Grade: 5 out of 5