Saturday, May 31, 2008
Yep - we did indeed go see Sex and the City - the movie! Now like millions of others, sister Lisa and I were fans of the show. We would get together at her place Saturday night while Saturday night after Saturday night Ron would watch the Leafs. He was glad of this since he said I didn't cheer for them enough so I brought bad luck, and I was glad of this because I didn't cheer for them enough so I brought them bad luck *snort*. No - what it really was that instead of watching a really sad hockey team blow game after game, sister Lisa and I would watch good movies. And then after the movie, we would stay tuned and watch Sex and the City. As we were standing in line tonight, alas, Lisa showed her age (it was her birthday this past week) and asked if I ever watched the show. After giving her a rather odd look, I said 'yeah - at your place. Remember?'
I cheered in the final episode when Big showed up in Paris and finally declared his love even though I always liked Aiden better. But Big was who Carrie wanted all along and it was Big she got in the end.
So it was with great anticipation that I've been waiting for the movie. Because it was sister Lisa's birthday she got to pick the movie tonight and I was kind of worried that she would pick the Indiana Jones movie that so many have been meh about.
But luckily she picked Sex and the City.
I'm not going to say much because I expect many will be seeing this one and I don't want to spoil it for anyone by answering the question - Do Big and Carrie tie the knot?
Instead I'll just say that Carrie is still Carrie, Miranda is still Miranda, Charlotte is still Charlotte and Samantha ? - well she finally becomes Samantha again.
My verdict on this one? I wish we still had the television show, but if we only have the movie - the movie gets.......
A nice big Thumbs Up!
And yes, they wear Great Clothes and Shoes that I envy (even though I'd never wear them).
And Smith is Just As Hot!
Oh - and one more thing I can't believe I forgot to mention. Almost full frontal male nudity in one scene - and nope - not giving details.
Sometimes it's almost too easy! I headed out early today to Walmart. You see it was (sister) Lisa's Birthday earlier this week and being a fantastic procrastinator, I had not gotten her gift yet.
Oh and by the way - the movie she chose - Sex and the City. Yes!
Anyway, so I needed to get her her gift. As well, I still needed a few odds and ends for the kitchen. Yes - the table and chairs came in earlier this week. Pictures to come Very Soon.
Naturally I got carried away.
Then I need to get a new lawnmower. You see Ryan borrowed it and it didn't seem to work for him. It is an old one and past it's time. I got the lightest one I could find because I DO NOT like cutting the grass. This picture of the smiling woman is NOT me!
While I was there, I decided to get a couple of hanging flower baskets. Ron was the gardener in the family since a gardener I am not, and these are the first ones I've bought in quite some time!
So between the Walmart and Canadian Tire purchases, I was already down quite a bit. But Then - I needed gas.
Such a lovely cover! Whatever could it mean??
My inner 4 year old is screaming- "ME WANT NOW!!" To be released on August 2nd.
Friday, May 30, 2008
Poor Lindsey Brooks' ass of a fiancee has dumped her after what should have been a wonderful seduction on Lindsey’s part. She was busy making dinner wearing only wearing high heel stilettos and an apron at the time and thought this would help rekindle the romance and love she shares with her soon to be husband. Unfortunately he didn’t see it that way and since someone was taking pictures through their condo window at the time, she failed in more ways than she ever thought possible. Lindsey needs to reevaluate her life decides to go lick her wounds in Moose Falls, Montana where her Aunt Millie resided. Lindsey lost touch with her beloved Millie, who before she died, wanted to will Lindsey her old canoe livery (Where one can rent canoes to take out on the lake). But with Lindsey busy being engaged and writing an on-line blog and a syndicated advice column called "Love Letters", she lost contact with Millie. Now she has come to Moose Falls to see if she can buy the livery back and hopefully figure out what went wrong with her love life.
The owner of the livery, Rob Coulter, is a hermit. Some of the townspeople even say he is one scary dude. Since Lindsey drove all this way to the middle of nowhere, she is not leaving until she talks to mister scary. When Lindsey finally meets Rob, things don't go that well at all. Rob is a rude and mean SOB. But Rob is also one sexy mean SOB, and Lindsey wouldn't mind getting back on the old sex horse with mister moody. Rob also wears his flannel shirts very, very well. *G*
Rob just wants to be left alone and no one will tell him otherwise even this flaky but cute city girl. Eventually he gives in and decides to allow Lindsey, or Abby as he now calls her because of her advice column, to walk in Maggie's shoes. As things progress between the two, Rob begins to enjoy having Lindsey around more and more.
It seems that Rob has quite the underwear fetish when it comes to Lindsey. After getting a look at Lindsey's leopard print bra, he has no choice but to kiss her. Who would have thought he would find leopard print so sexy? After that, Rob can’t help but get back on the sex horse with Lindsey. But Rob is so secretive about his past and there is this little thing that irks Lindsey. Rob has a tattoo over his heart with the name, "Gina". Who is Gina and why won't he tell Lindsey about her?
These two have one scorching love affair and the love scenes are really well written and just plain fun. The mystery that surrounds Rob will keep you guessing and when you find out what Rob has gone through, you want to wrap him in your arms, much like Lindsey has done.
Letters To a Secret Lover was such a pleasant surprise that made me laugh out loud, and coo over the major loving between Rob and Lindsey, who can't keep their hands off of each other. Toni Blake has written a near perfect novel that left me with a smile on my face.
Since summer is upon us and it is probably going to be a hot one, why not try to get through the heat with steamy book like Letters to a Secret Lover?
4 out of 5 stars. Definitely not a “MEH” read
Thursday, May 29, 2008
But after reading some reviews about Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, especially from my good blogger buddies, who include Ana from Book Smugglers and Stacy from Stacy’s Place on Earth, I was torn. I thought, well I am the ultimate Indy fan and they just don’t understand my need for that sexy, whip-holding, hat wearing… um yeah… so I decided to go see the movie Monday night.
We all know my new favorite phrase is, "WTF?". Well, my second favorite phrase is- "Blows big monkey chunks". Indiana Jones and the… gosh, I really hate the title...
The plot in simple terms: Famed archaeologist/adventurer Dr. Henry "Indiana" Jones is called back into action when he becomes entangled in a Soviet plot to uncover the secret behind mysterious artifacts known as the Crystal Skulls. The year is 1957 and Dr. Jones is being framed. He along with a spunky young man must travel to some dangerous places where no one comes out alive. The Crystal Skull may be something not human and it is up to Indy and his new sidekick, Mutt (spunky young man), to find the answers.
What is up with Harrison Ford? I know the guy is older and near retirement age, but this is not the Indy I has grown to love! Harrison acted like he was sleepwalking through the role. Can we say zombie? There was no trademark Indy wit or one-liners I was so use to hearing. He looked so bored and I came to the conclusion in the first five minutes that this would be a major bomb. And you would think with such Oscar winning power with Cate Blanchett as a villain, she would be so evil and diabolical that she would put all other past Indy villains to shame? Not here!! It was like Speilberg asked Cate to forget everything she has ever learned about acting that has made her into the thespian she is and throw all that out the window for his movie. She was annoying and such a cartoon character that I was hoping she would fall into quicksand.
There are some other well known actors that pop up that act are just as bad as the rest, One such character is a surprise from Indy’s past who is somewhat of a welcome relief to this snore fest. As for Shia LeBeouf, he is a cute kid and has potential. I feel Speilberg is grooming him much like Leonardo DiCaprio is from Scorsese. Shia did bring some life into certain scenes, but overall not even his cutesy antics could save this train wreck of a movie.
I also expected E.T. to come out of the Amazon jungle looking to phone home. Yup, Indy and his crew along with the evil Russians (it is the 1950’s after all) are on the search for aliens.
In a nut shell that is my review. Sorry, it is a bit scathing but I am mourning the loss of a great character and a trilogy that took over a whole decade and set the standard for a blockbuster. This is a slap in the face to the fans, like myself.
2 Big Blows Monkey Chunks thumbs down. Wait for DVD, better yet cable.
My next movie adventure is going to be Sex and the City. I shudder to think how that will play out on screen.
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Steam Level: Well – the hero has to perform Tantric sex – need I say more?
Why this one: Well – I had so much fun in the TBR challenge with The Sword and The Wolf, I had to continue with the series!
Amazon Blurb: Kidnapped and put on the auction block, Dominor is sold to Lady Serina, arithmancer extraordinaire. Initially outraged, he is soon curious as she explains that she needs him not as a slave but as an assistant. An inadvertent spell cast hundreds of years ago is the root of the battle between the sexes and the war that is ravaging her world. She has found a way to reverse the spell, but she needs a strong male mage to help. Dom has yet to back down from a challenge, and he finds the lady to be as pleasantly challenging as the task itself. Johnson turns up the heat in her third outing in the Sons of Destiny series (The Sword, The Wolf, 2007) as Dom and Serina not only engage in their own battle of wills but also relish practicing the tantric skills needed to cast their spell. Johnson's quirky, modern-touch sense of humor is a keynote in her historical fantasy, and the series grows more intriguing as each brother fulfills his part of the prophecy.
My Thoughts: I can’t say enough about how much I’m enjoying this series! Dominor kind of fits his name in that he is quite arrogant – in a charming way. It’s interesting to see how this total and completely sure of himself hero suffers the indignity of being captured and sold as a slave. I can’t imagine anyone less humble. Yet he accepts with his own estimable aplumb and decides to see what happens. Of course the thought of Tantric sex is not something he sneezes his nose at as they need lots of practice before hand to make sure they get it right.
Although he was arrogant as all get out, he was also a fascinating character. I think he might be my favourite hero in the series so far. And Serina is an equally great match for him.
Ms. Johnson’s heroines are interesting. The first couple were the typical virgin heroines – ok, well they weren’t typical, but you get what I’m saying. But Serina had ‘known’ a few men before she met Dominor and she has a healthy enjoyment of sex. She's a genius in her particular area of magic but in her personal life she is a scatterbrain. Being a scatterbrain myself in many ways, I really liked her. And I loved the way Dominor took charge of her and took care of her. He reminded me a bit of JD Robb's Roarke in that way. He freely admitted and without any issue about it at all, that Serina was smarter than him and he admired her for it. Can I say I really liked that part of him.
A great deal of the story took place in the land she was living in, so we didn’t get as much time with the extended family in this one. And I really enjoy all the brothers with their varying personalities. But towards the end of the book the family were together again.
There was an especially tender moment between Dominor and his twin brother Evanor, who lost his magic, his voice in the previous book.
As Katie said in the previous post, it’s wonderful discovering new authors and it’s been wonderful discovering Jean Johnson!
And for the shallow me – although they are all very similar, this is my favourite cover.
Grade: 4.5 out of 5
One of my favorite bloggers, Lisabea, cannot stop raving about Josh Lanyon who writes GLBT fiction. He writes for MLR Press and Loose ID, two great on-line publishers that publish some of the most excellent GLBT books out there. I finally decided to read one of Josh’s books to see what I have been missing.
The Dark Horse is an excellent mystery/romance about Hollywood actor, Sean Fairchild and LAPD Detective Dan Moran, who is also a bodyguard to the Hollywood elite. The Dark Horse begins where Sean is trying to get his life back on track after being stalked by a fan. His stalker is dead and Dan, his former bodyguard, is now his lover. We see things from Sean’s POV and his voice and internal dialogue was very enjoyable. Sean is simply adorable and the relationship he has with the older and rugged Dan is very sweet and very sexy. I have read too many gay romances in the past where everything is physical and not enough emotional build up. I like sex in my books like anyone else, but Josh has done something very different. Even though we see how much these two men care of each other, their physical intimacies have not taken over the story to the point where the plot is pushed aside. Sean has issues about these certain intimacies that Dan would like to introduce Sean to. But Dan takes Sean’s feelings into consideration and doesn’t push. Even though Sean questions things between himself and Dan, Dan is there to answer any questions Sean may have. And even when Sean thinks his stalker is still alive, Dan is there to protect Sean and help him get through his fears.
If you haven’t had the chance with GLBT fiction, Josh Lanyon’s The Dark Horse is the perfect place to start.
4 out of 5 stars
I finally started reading Colleen Gleason’s Gardella Vampire Chronicles with the very first book in the series, The Rest Falls Away. I am totally hooked now about 19th century vampire slayer, Victoria Gardella. Talk about girl power! Victoria is a great heroine who goes through so much and walks through the fire to come out on top. Victoria’s calling is to be a Venator, which is a vampire slayer who must sacrifice her life to eradicate the world of these evil undead beings. Victoria has been waiting for this moment to be welcomed as the newest slayer. But poor Victoria has her mother to put up with who wants her only daughter to have her coming out in London to find a husband. Victoria’s mother has no clue about Victoria’s calling and must hide her nightly patrols. Victoria is a 19th century Buffy in other words. But Victoria is not alone and has her great aunt Eustacia as her mentor and to teach her the ways of being a Venator.
Victoria has a lot on her plate. At her debut, she meets the Marquess of Rockley and you could say the sparks fly between these two. Rockley believes Victoria is his destiny and wants her to be his wife. Talk about one lucky girl because she also has some other men interested in her as well, such as the seductive and mysterious Sebastian Vioget who walks on both sides of the fence and Max, another Ventor, who thinks Victoria is too naïve and not skilled enough to take on the bad guys.
There is also an evil vampire skank villainess and a shocking surprise at the end that I didn’t see coming and had me shaking my first (of doom) at Colleen for doing what she did. But there is a reason even though I was very upset * sob * but in a good way.
If you need your vampire fix and a true kick ass heroine who can carry a stake and still waltz with the best of them, introduce yourself to Colleen Gleason’s Gardella Vampire Chronicles and The Rest Falls Away.
4 out of 5 stars.
If you read it, you can see I struggled so I fell back on an old Seinfeld kind of blog. I wrote about not writing.
Now I really have to run - I'm going to be late for work at this rate!!
Monday, May 26, 2008
But my weekend was a bit wacky and a little WTF? **I love the phrase WTF and I think I will use it all the time now**
Saturday was an interesting one. I was insulted when I went food shopping for some munchies I would bring to a BBQ I was invited to. As I was in the bakery section looking for some cupcakes and what not one of the bakery people came up to me and asked:
"Are you pregnant?"
You can just imagine my shock and horror. As I walked away trying not to go postal or break down in tears, I paid for my purchases and went home. That question kept repeating over and over in my mind. I haven't gained any weight and as I looked down at my stomach, I saw no new protruding fat rolling over my pants. Plus, I just had finished a 2 hour work out session.
I wanted sympathy and went to my mother and told her what happened. She gasped and said the woman was off her bird. (by the way I never understood what "Off their bird" means)
And she continues to say:
"There is no way you can be pregnant because you still have nips (meaning my boobs). And if you were pregnant you would be able to fit into a B cup again."
Any interesting weekend stories that compares to mine?
Sunday, May 25, 2008
The lucky winners are:
I just need your mailing address sent to Katiebabsg@gmail.com so I can send you this great book! I started reading it myself and you will seriously be blown away.
Saturday, May 24, 2008
If you like your stories hot and titillating with great romance and an equal amount of tension and drama, The Art of Desire is the book for you. Cherie has written quite an interesting book that interlaces both past and present. Some authors have done this in the past with less than successful results. But Cherie gives equal amount of time for each story. One is during 1895 and the other during the present day. But regardless of the time period, these two sets of couples can sure act on their desires for one another. The historical romance is more traditional with some nice passionate love scenes. The present day one is oh, so naughty. Between the two there is some creative language and terms used that may make you blush.
Our present day heroine, Mandy, is the prim and proper museum director of the Santa Fe Women’s Art Museum. But Mandy hides a secret. She likes rough, dirty sex and the only man for the job is her dirty boy, Jared Cabrillo. Jared is what we would call a player or in other romance terms, “The Duke of Slut”. This sex fiend is the great-great nephew of Atacar, an Indian outlaw who had an affair with a nineteenth-century artist, Catherine Burke. Catherine came from
Jared enjoys women, remember he is- The Duke of Slut, but there is something about Mandy, who makes him feel all tingly inside. They begin to have a bond because Mandy allows him free reign over her body and again the key word is “dirty”. Not dirty in the sense that they roll around in the mud, but where Mandy is more open to try new things in the bedroom.
As Jared and Mandy get their love fest on, in turn we see how Catherine and Atacar started theirs, which is more sweet but just as sexy. Their love is more tragic where as Jared and Mandy have a chance for happiness that rivals their older counterparts, but Jared has some issues like most men do in this sort of tale. Jared likes to suffer.
What I really enjoyed about The Art of Desire is that the overall tone is very erotic, but it doesn’t venture in such taboo ways that some erotica will try. Cherie Feather sure knows how to write some sexy love scenes and her storytelling skills really did impress me. Hopefully this will not be the only erotic romance she writes because she has grabbed my attention and I would definitely check out her next book.
Overall 3.5 stars out of 5
Friday, May 23, 2008
I have always been overweight. The Katiebabs’s people are big ones. My father’s people have big hips, which are perfect for childbearing. My mother’s people are very broad. My genes show the best of these two worlds. By the time I was a senior in college and I was close to one hundred pounds over weight. I was pushing 240 on my 5’10 frame. I was known as the cute fat girl. Also at this time I didn’t give a rat’s ass because my four years in college were the best I ever had. I was accepted by both men and women and had great relationships with my teachers and other students alike. I was even Vice- President of my sorority, Alpha Rho Omega. Being away at college allows you so much freedom and for me that was with food. Again, I was always a “big” girl but at school, my appetite for food went crazy. I was close to wearing a size 26 pants and my hips were 52 inches by the age of 21.
The day when I came back for my final semester of college was a real eye opener for me. I was sitting in one of the dorm lounges, when one of my fellow sisters was looking at pictures with one of her guy friends. The guy gasped and asked out loud, “Who’s the big dude?” I glanced over at the picture. There was me, a big blob in a black sweat suit wearing a hat. I don’t know what was worse, being thought of as a man or being fat. I slowly stood up and went into my room and sat there stunned. I didn’t go in hysterics but made a promise to myself to live a life with more well being for myself, whether to live a healthier lifestyle or one of fulfillment. The very next day I went to the gym and for months till my graduation I exercised with incredible results. I pushed myself also in other ways. I worked my brain along with body by reading and writing more than I ever have. I looked forward to what my future would bring.
Ten years later I am in a brighter place all because of one simple picture and the recognition that I can accomplish something most people said I couldn’t.
*People told me I couldn’t keep the weight off. In over ten years I have lost 80 pounds and kept it off. My boobs may be entering a –A cup territory, but I definitely no longer have 52 inch hips.
*I was told I wouldn’t be working in television in a city like NYC doing what I enjoy. I now work at NBC Networks in NYC.
*I was told my book reviews were less than satisfactory and no one would find them pleasing. In the past year I have written over hundreds of reviews and I know for a fact that people read them and admire my skills. And I thank you all for that.
The reason for this personal post is that some of you are at a point in your life where you want to accomplish something great like publishing that WIP or perhaps sitting down and try your hand at writing your very first review. It all comes down to you. Don't second guess yourself. Your success is what you make it. Forget the need for money, fame or prestige. Your success is based on the goals you set for yourself and taking the initiative to accomplish something. Just by thinking about doing it and actually starting on it in itself should be applauded.
I am the perfect example where so many have told me “I couldn’t”. They may say I can’t but I simply say to them, “I can.”
You can too. Now pass me some chocolate *wink wink*
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Once again, today is the day to post reviews for books from our TBR pile that Keishon has challenged us to.
Now I almost feel like I’m cheating with this first book. I know the rules say the book can come out in 2007 or before – but 2007 wasn’t really that long ago. But…. I console myself with this a caveat.
One of the symptoms of this addiction called book buying for me, and I know others, is buying a number of books in a series before ever trying one. I’ve done this a few times with different authors with varying results. With the Dark series by Christine Feehan, I purchased about five before actually trying one, only to discover they weren’t my cupa at all! Mind you I bought them used at a UBS – with a refund for books I had traded in, so I wasn’t really out that much money.
But on other occasions I go right wild. Such was the case with the Sons of Destiny series by Jean Johnson. I bought the first one, The Sword because it appealed to the shallow me who liked the cover. Mind you I also read a pretty good review of it somewhere so between the review and the Really Nice Cover, I was hooked. And not only did I buy it – I bought it in trade size which is quite a bit more than pp, although not so much when buying on line I’ve discovered. I still hadn’t read it when the addiction took over and I bought the second one, The Wolf, again in trade size.
Another symptom of this book buying addiction is justifying. We can find any excuse to justify buying books. So as more of this series came out, I justified the fact that I was going to keep buying by telling myself I already had the first two, I couldn’t stop now could I and I was still liking the covers. So I was up to having bought the first four – in trade size before even reading one!
So while is book was just published in 2007, it seems like I’ve had it longer.
Now onto the review(s)!
The Sword by Jean Johnson
Published: January, 2007
Can a book be called adorable? Because if it can, this is the perfect word to describe The Sword. This is a series about four sets of twin brothers living in a mystical, magical realm who have been banished to their own island because of a prophesy. Most important of all, there can be no women on the island because the prophesy states that it is a woman who starts the prophesy ball rolling. When Morganen, the youngest brother brings a woman through his scrying mirror in order to save her life; a woman in danger of being burned to death, Sabre, the oldest brother and our hero is not exactly a happy camper. He wants her sent home – ASAP. Kelly, the heroine, is from present day times here on earth and has been rescued by devious yet loveable Morganen. He has decided that it’s time to get the prophesy started with his oldest brother.
Kelly and Sabre battle each other and reading about them is a real hoot. Kelly also decides that a castle that’s been lived in by eight guys needs a lot of work and it’s also a real treat watching her order these tough magical brothers around. They each have their own distinct personality and their own prophesy to look forward too.
Now the conflict comes in because someone from the mainland doesn’t want these brothers around and sends horrid and evil creatures to take them down and it’s great reading seeing how they all use their unique talents to thwart said evil creatures; along with taking advice from non-magical Kelly.
I adored this book and was mighty glad that sometimes strange reading symptoms take over and I have the next three to look forward too.
I found the world building to be believable and while if I sat down and concentrated I might have found some of the brother magic a bit questionable as to when it worked and when it didn’t. But I didn’t, I just enjoyed the journey – and a very enjoyable journey it was!
Grade: 4.5 out of 5
I figured since I had time, I’d dig deeper into the TBR pile for the next one. I have more Harlequin books than you can imagine so I decided I’d start reading them too finally. I consider Harlequins to be the cotton candy of romance books. They’re light and fluffy though not very nutritious. But when you’re in the mood for it – it really fits the bill
So the first one on the list is an old one.
Gabriel Hawk’s Lady by Beverly Barton
Published: December 1997
She has moved on now to single title books but before she did she wrote quite a few Harlequin books.
For a light, fluffy, cotton candy book, this one was pretty good. Gabriel Hawk is a former CIA agent who operated under cover in some Central American country. He gave up working for them when he couldn’t save a missionary and his wife, who was also the daughter of the countries king from being beheaded by rebels.
Now, four years later, Rorie, the sister of the missionary has hired Gabriel to take her back to the country, now in even worse shape, to rescue her young nephew. Gabriel does NOT want to take this young innocent with him, but she insists and manages to pass every test he puts before her, thus earning his respect.
This is typical Harlequin, the tough but tortured hero, the young innocent virgin heroine. It’s also pretty clichéd, but then one knows that going in when reading a Harlequin. And this is one of the better ones. I was in the mood for cotton candy and this one fit the bill.
Grade: 3.5 out of 5
The Wolf by Jean Johnson
Published: April, 2007
Can a book be called adorable? Wait – I already did that. OK then, I need to do it different this time.
I was so pleased with The Sword, right after reading GW’sL, I dove right into this one. And I’m very pleased to say I enjoyed this one just as much as her first book. This one is the story of Wolfer (I know – groan worthy name – but don’t let it distract you - besides he can shape-shift and his main form to shift to is a wolf) the twin of Sabre, the hero of The Sword and his destined mate Alys. Before they were banished Wolf’s family and Alys’s family were friends and there was a special friendship between Wolfer and Alys. Years later however, things have changed for both of them. Wolfer has been banished along with his brothers and Alys has come under the thumb of her very evil uncle. She manages to escape and flees to Nightfall Isle – the home of the eight brothers. Wolf is delighted to see his old friend but also confused that he feels a whole lot different for a grown up, matured Alys then he did for his childhood friend.
It turns out that her evil uncle is the one behind all the attacks and once again they must all ban together to defeat their enemy.
This one was just a charming and delightful as The Sword and while not laugh out loud funny, I did find myself smiling in quite a number of places and I was glad I was on the late shift at work so no one was around at breaks and lunch so I could keep reading this delightful tale.
The first two are out in PB now for anyone not wanting to pay trade sized prices and I already ordered The Cat, the fifth book in this series. In trade size of course though. I have to be anal about these books.
One thing I should also mention is that Ms. Johnson can write mighty fine and mighty hawt love scenes - just in case anyone is wondering that is. These first two were Very Steamy.
Grade: 4.5 out of 5So - once again I had great success from my TBR pile. I'm loving this!!
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
(although at this point I have to say, recently a good friend sent me an autographed to me copy of Lover Eternal - Rhage's story which I loved and gave a 5 out of 5. It is now resting on my special books book shelf - but that doesn't have much to do with this - I just had to brag about it)
So when we were talking not long ago about a book we had both recently read, I said how much I enjoyed it and she said it didn't work for her at all I was a little surprised. And then I thought of a different kind of review. Then I thought it would be even more fun to exchange reviews and debate the book.
So with that in mind, here we go
To Taste Temptation by Elizabeth Hoyt
Pub. Date: May 2008
Series: The Legend of the Four Soldiers, #1
It’s no secret I loved Elizabeth Hoyt’s first three books. Also I think I may have mentioned that I came close to stalker-like when I ran into her in an elevator – thankfully I managed to restrain myself to save total and complete embarrassment.
I also thoroughly enjoyed her first effort with contemporaries in Hot by alter ego Julia Harper.
So when I started reading To Taste Temptation, I fully expected to love it. And guess what? I did. It's another winner for me for Elizabeth Hoyt.
But wait – this isn’t much of a review so I’ll continue. This is the first book in a series, The Legend of the Four Soldiers. The first soldier, Samuel Hartley is a self made man from the Colonies who fought in the war. He is haunted by what happened there and has come to
Samuel is delightful! He’s brash, he’s honest and he really doesn’t give a damn what society thinks of his odd ways. He is Very Strongly Attracted to Emeline and pursues her relentlessly.
Emeline, for her part is Very Strongly Attracted to Samuel, but she’s a snob, she’s elitist, she’s prickly as a pear and I thought she was a hoot. I don’t think she will be everyone’s favourite heroine – in fact I can see many not liking her, but I did. She’s a product of her times and her upbringing.
I love seeing Samuel get her going and getting her mad as a wet hen. He takes great delight in doing that too. They are thrown into each other’s company quite a bit when he hires her to help with his sister Rebecca.
He finally wears down her resistance and when he does – wow – the steam level left my windows fogged up. Of course afterwards, Emeline being Emeline claims that’s it – their brief affair is over. But Samuel isn’t good at taking no for an answer and relentlessly pursues her until she give in again – and then again in a country house party.
Now at this point sadly the book gets a bit of a down grading. You see, Emeline is practically engaged to her brother’s best friend – a man she loves but only as a friend of her brother’s. At this point, she runs away from Samuel and she and Vale, her brothers friend formally announce their engagement. From this point on, I admit, I would have liked to smack her a good one. Vale and Samuel had established a friendship and of course that went very quickly down the drain. Her stubbornness caused a great deal of pain for Samuel who I really enjoyed. Then later they have a final ‘one for the road’ so to speak and I thought another harder slap was in order.
But, things got straightened out – this is a romance of course and I happily finished the book.
There was also an interesting secondary story between Rebecca and O’Hare, one of the footmen employed by Samuel. I don’t know if Ms. Hoyt has something planned for them or not – but I kind of hope so.
There was another interesting thing of note about this book. In her previous trilogy, Ms. Hoyt told a series of fairy tales. She does the same thing with this book at the beginning of each chapter. Normally I tend to skip over the italicized writing at the beginning of chapters, but here as well as her other three books, I found the tale enchanting.
Final grade - 4 out of 5 stars
When I heard Elizabeth Hoyt was releasing a new book, I did a little jig and couldn't wait to get my hands on it. Ever since she has come on the historical romance scene, I have been a huge fan and is one of those authors you can always count on. But unfortunately, with To Taste Temptation, this is not the case. To be blunt, this book was a huge disappointment for me and is my first of the year so far. This came very close to a DNF and it took a lot for me to finish. Maybe I kept soldiering on because of the sex scenes, which
Emeline Gordon is the woman to go to if you daughter or sister needs help being accepted by the Ton. She helps these young ladies dress, walk and act a certain way so they can find the husband that is suited for them. The one thing about Emeline that is positive is that she is a widow and has experience with sex. At least she is not those types of virgin widows who haven't had sex until the hero comes along. She is the perfect persona of womanhood, or so we are told. But her precious stoicism is about to come crashing down because of the brash American who wears Indian leggings comes into her life.
Samuel Hartley is wild, because hey, he is from the wilds of
But Samuel is not totally honest with Em. He is using her for a cover. He is trying to find the person responsible for betraying his troupe during a battle during the war which became a massacre and killed many of his men. Samuel was the Corporal in charge and it is his duty and because of his guilt that he must find this person and bring him to justice! So, Samuel finds some buddies who fought side by side with him and they trek through
Other than more creative sex between Sam and Em and the mystery that will be solved in under 400 pages, I seriously can't think of anything else to recommend. Perhaps my expectations were too high for an author who has delivered extraordinary work in the past?
Final Grade 2 out of 5 stars
KristieJ: OK first off - lets start with something we do agree with. She sure can write some hawt and steamy love scenes can't she?
KatieBabs: That is what kept me reading. Hoyt can sure write steamy sex. But again I had a problem with the chemistry. One minute Emeline is giving Samuel the cold shoulder, next she is about to be taken on the study floor.
KristieJ: I found it interesting that you mentioned Passion by Lisa Valdez cause I thought the same thing when I read it. Although I liked Ms. Hoyt's behind the curtain scene better
KatieBabs: That was my favorite scene in the whole book
KristieJ : I found her hot and cold nature interesting. I think she was fighting herself - as to what she really was as opposed to what society told her she should be
KatieBabs: Eh. I felt Emeline was too much of a cliché of many heroines I have read in the past. I am all for opposites attracting, but Em was just too cold for no reason
KristieJ: She shouldn't be so attracted to a rough Colonial - but she was. I do admit though she was a tad too cold, but then Samuel seemed to delight in ruffling her feathers
KatieBabs: How many times have we read about a British lady at odds with her feelings for the untamed American hero? I did like Samuel a lot. I felt he deserved a better woman
KristieJ: LOL for me not that many. I haven't been reading as many historicals these days as I used to
KatieBabs: This is going to sound harsh, but I kept thinking of Avonization when I was reading very much a paint by numbers read and Hoyt is so much more than that
KristieJ: Really? Interesting. I didn't get that and I am a huge opponent of Avonization. But then you read a lot of
KatieBabs: Maybe my expectations are too high after reading Kleypas, Bourne and now Meredith Duran? To Taste Temptation was missing something to keep my interest. I also felt Hoyt was trying to make Samuel more tortured than he should be
KristieJ: I thought he was a pretty jovial guy. He had a good sense of humour and he laughed a lot. He did have a rather tragic time of it before, but overall I didn't find him too tortured - not in the sense that he was moody and sour anyway.
KatieBabs: Not moody, but guilt ridden.
KristieJ: LOL - aren't most heroes in one way or another? That's what makes them so darned attractive
KatieBabs: seems to be. Not sure which ones I find more appealing. But imagine if you had a moody, sour, guilt ridden hero who is good in bed?
KristieJ: ROTFL - it always comes back to that doesn't it? Are you thinking perhaps Guy of Gisbourne?
KatieBabs: oh Guy, yes.... Mister chesty moody sex on a stick
KristieJ: We aren't going to go there in case I can't hear you
KatieBabs: *looks innocently at Kristie*
KristieJ: Did you read the fairy tale that started off each chapter? And if so - what did you think of it?
KatieBabs: I do like the fairy tale idea.
KristieJ: I think it's kind of cool that she carries them through all her books - since romance books are kind of like fairy tales for adults
KatieBabs: I will say that even though To Taste Temptation wasn't a book for me, I am interested to see where she goes with the next three books planned
KristieJ: I really liked this one. It had me on the edge of my seat - but I didn't really see how it tied in with the story the way they did in her previous trilogy
KatieBabs: I wonder if Vale will get his own book.
KristieJ: I'm thinking he will. Along with her friend - forget her name. I also wonder what she has planned with Elizabeth and the footman if anything.
KatieBabs: I believe there are 4 soldiers who get their own stories, like the four on the fairy tale she has
KatieBabs: Samuel's sister Rebecca and her footman?
KristieJ: why do I keep thinking
KatieBabs: Also I didn't understand the deal with Emeline's friend who wears brown and wants to be and look dull.
KristieJ: So - even though this one is a thumbs down for you, will you try her next book?
KristieJ: I'm sure we will find out *g*
KatieBabs: I will give her next book a go, but if it is like To Taste Temptation...
KristieJ: It's sad isn't it - saying goodbye to a former well loved author. I've done that more times than I care to remember. Gaelen Foley, Liz Carlyle, Mary Balogh to name a few
KatieBabs: Sorry, I give To Taste Temptation a big thumbs down and donate it to the library.
KristieJ): And I give it a thumbs up - with a couple of reservations about the heroine.
Monday, May 19, 2008
Our world has been invaded by an unseen enemy. Humans become hosts for these invaders, their minds taken over while their bodies remain intact and continue their lives apparently unchanged. Most of humanity has succumbed.
When Melanie, one of the few remaining "wild" humans is captured, she is certain it is her end. Wanderer, the invading "soul" who has been given Melanie's body, was warned about the challenges of living inside a human: the overwhelming emotions, the glut of senses, the too vivid memories. But there was one difficulty Wanderer didn't expect: the former tenant of her body refusing to relinquish possession of her mind.
Wanderer probes Melanie's thoughts, hoping to discover the whereabouts of the remaining human resistance. Instead, Melanie fills Wanderer's mind with visions of the man Melanie loves—Jared, a human who still lives in hiding. Unable to separate herself from her body's desires, Wanderer begins to yearn for a man she has been tasked with exposing. When outside forces make Wanderer and Melanie unwilling allies, they set off on a dangerous and uncertain search for the man they both love.
But this time Sula shook up the way we have done things in the past and put our names into the randomizer (sounds like an awesome vibrator). Kristie (J) is 18th and I am last to pick! The best was saved for last.
Sunday, May 18, 2008
"A girl tell a guy what she wants. Sexy, zany, crazy, whatever. I wanna see her pipe up and ask for her heart's desire."
The prize was a $50 Amazon gift certificate. I was very interested in trying my hand at this, so I start typing away and came up with this:
Lacey slowly came awake as the sunshine hit the windowpane through the shade. It was Sunday and she was craving blueberry pancakes. Greg, her husband of five years was still sound asleep as he was spooned up against her back. She would have snuggled back against him and slept a bit more but her stomach was growling.
She wanted those pancakes and there was only one man who made them the way she liked them. Greg.
Lacey turned to her side to look at Greg. She kissed him softly on the lips and he groaned. His arms came around her and his face fell to the side of her neck. Lacey leaned her head into his ear.
"Honey, wake up. Make me some pancakes."
Greg groaned again. "Um… too tired. You get up and make them." He whispered as he rubbed his nose against Lacey's neck, which tickled. Lacey gotten up herself to make breakfast, but she had a planned and was sticking to it. She continued to lie there for a moment thinking how she could get Greg up and out of bed and into the kitchen.
Then it came to her.
Ever so slowly, Lacey reached her hands under the cover and rubbed her fingertips across Greg's boxer covered groin. He quickly became hard. And then that was when Lacey attacked. She quickly put her head under the covers and replaced her hand with her mouth as her tongue shot through the small slit of his boxers. Greg's eyes popped open.
He was now awake….
Almost two hours later, Lacey was dozing in bed, so very relaxed and naked. As she rolled to her side to face the open bedroom door, Greg came in with a tray. On the tray were his signature blueberry pancakes that Lacey loved so well. There was also two glasses of orange juice. Greg came over and placed the tray on the bedside table and sat on the bed.
He reached over to the woman he loved more than his own life and said. "I think I am going to make my pancakes every Sunday from now on." he chuckled and gave Lacey a deep kiss.
Greg thought about his own form of persuasion. In his hands was a bottle of maple syrup and it wasn't just going to be used for pancakes.
Now I just need a title for my mini-masterpiece. Any suggestions?
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Thursday, May 15, 2008
Katie will be here shortly to welcome you all to our humble abode but until she does I say:
Let the good times Roll
a.k.a. Desert Island Keeper Hero Draft: Round 6 of 6.
Round 6 picks will be in AQUA MARINE
1. Bridget Locke - Mr. Jules Cassidy (All Through the Night, Suzanne Brockmann), Bones (One Foot in the Grave and Halfway to the Grave by Jeannie Frost), Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy (Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen), Judd Laurens (Caressed by Ice, Nalini Singh), Simon Hunt (Secrets of a Summer's Night, Lisa Kleypas), Theodore Westgaard from LaVyrle Spencer's Years.
2. Ana - Bowen MacRieve (Wicked Deeds on a Winter's Night, Kresley Cole), Sebastian St. Vincent (Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas), Royce Westmoreland (A Kingdom of Dreams,Judith McNaught), Conrad Wroth (Dark Needs at Night's Edge, Kresley Cole), Logan a.k.a. Wolverine (X-Men), Fox Mulder from the X-files spin-off books
3. Tumperkin - Mick Tremore (The Proposition, Judith Ivory), Michael McNeil (Patricia Gaffney's Wild at Heart), Christian, Duke of Jervaulx (Flowers from the Storm, Laura Kinsale), Graham Wessit (Black Silk, Judith Ivory), Sebastian Verlaine (To Have and To Hold, Pat Gaffney), Charles Audley, An Infamous Army, Georgette Heyer
4. LesleyW - John Matthew aka Tehrror (Black Dagger Brotherhood series, JR Ward), Jeremy Danvers (Women of the Otherworld series, Kelly Armstrong), Vayl (Jaz and Vayl series, Jennifer Rardin), Curran (Magic Bites and Magic Burns, Ilona Andrews), Richard Tremayne High Lord of the Darkyn (Darkyn books, Lynn Viehl) Duncan Reever from the Stardoc books by S.L. Viehl.
5. Sarah - Clay (Women of the Otherworld series, Kelley Armstrong), Nathaniel (Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Series), Barinthus ( Meredith Gentry), Lucas (Heaven Sent Series, Jet Mykels), Jericho Barrons (Fever Series, Karen Marie Monings), Katou Youji from Haru wo Daiteita/Embracing Love by Nitta Youka.
6. Carolyn Jean - Eric Northman (Sookie series, Charlaine Harris), Joe Morelli (Stephanie Plum, Janet Evanovich), Ranger (Stephanie Plum, Janet Evanovich), Michael (Guardian Series, Meljean Brook), Adrian (The Spymaster's Lady, Joanna Bourne), Han Solo (Star Wars Series?) **SNEAKY THIEF who made Michael into a feather duster!!!!!** KB
7. Christine - Acheron (Dark Hunter series, Sherrilyn Kenyon) Qhuinn (Black Dagger Brotherhood series, JR Ward) Vishous (Black Dagger Brotherhood series, JR Ward), Butch O'Neill (Black Dagger Brotherhood series, JR Ward), Belial (Guardians Series, Meljean Brook), Gaelen vel Serranis (The Tairen Soul series, C.L. Wilson)
8. Ciaralira - Ethan McCabe (Demon Night, Meljean Brook) Hugh Castleford (Demon Angel, Meljean Brook) Westley (The Princess Bride, William Goldman), Lord Robert Andreville (Robin) (Angel Rogue, Mary Jo Putney), Kieran vel Solande (Tairen Soul Series, C.L. Wilson), Garret Langham, the Earl of Mayne, from Eloisa James' Pleasure for Pleasure.
9. JenB - Vane Kattalakis (Night Play, Sherrilyn Kenyon) Angel (Angel, Johanna Lindsey) Rule, (The Demon You Know, Christine Warren), Kade (Riley Jenson Guardian series, Keri Arthur), Challen (Warrior's Woman, Johanna Lindsey), Calvin Morissey from Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie
10. Katie(babs) - Alexander (The Bronze Horseman, Paullina Simons) Rehvenge (Black Dagger Brotherhood series, JR Ward), James Diaz (Cry No More, Linda Howard) Gabriel "Sully" Sullivan (Gabriel's Ghost, Linnea Sinclair), Rain Tairen Soul (Tairen Soul Series, C.L. Wilson),**THE BEST SEXIN HUT ON THE DIK** Jack Prescott from Dangerous Lover by Lisa Marie Rice
11. KristieJ - Derek Craven (Dreaming of You, Lisa Kleypas) Dax Silverbrake (Sky Pirate, Justine Davis) Ciaran Tamberlane (My Forever Love, Marsha Canham), Branden Kel-Paten (Games of Command, Linnea Sinclair), Gray Rouillard (After the Night, Linda Howard),**GRAY'S TONGUE... thump** Wizard from Driven by Eve Kenin
12. Lisabea - Adrien English (Adrien English series, Josh Lanyon) Colin Ames Beaumont (Demon Moon, Meljean Brook), Jake Romero (With Caution, J.L. Langley), Nate (My Fair Captain, J.L. Langley), Savitri Murray (Demon Moon, Meljean Brook),**THIEF!!! ORIGINAL MICHAEL THIEF!** KB Derek Knightly from Sam Kane's (blazing sparking too sizzling to read in the company of others makes me blush) At Love's Command
13. MaryKate - ROARKE (In Death series, JD Robb) Lucas Hunter (Slave to Sensation, Nalini Singh), Maximillian Pesaro,( Gardella Chronicles, Colleen Gleason), Cameron Quinn (Sea Swept, Nora Roberts), Jacob Green (Vampire Queen Servant series, Joey W. Hill),**ROARKE THIEF SHOULD HAVE BEEN MINE!!** KB Captain Jack Seward from Connie Brockway's All Through The Night.
14. Naida - Edward Cullen (Twilight, Stephanie Meyers) John Atlantis (Entangled, Kathleen Dante), Frederick Wentworth (Persuasion, Jane Austen), Aragorn aka Strider (Lord of the Rings trilogy, J.R.R. Tolkien), Tristen (Legends of the Fall, Jim Harrison), Mark Darcy from Helen Fielding's 'Bridget Jones Diary'
15. Samantha Kane - Doyle/The Queen's Darkness (Merry Gentry Series, Laurell K. Hamilton) Cat, a young pirate (The Windflower, Laura London),Chief of Police Jack West( All U Can Eat, Emma Holly), Tom Paoletti (Unsung Hero, Suzanne Brockmann), Angel a.k.a. Angelis (Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Angel Chronicles, Nancy Holder and or Angel: After the Fall, Brian Lynch and Franco Urru), Rhys ~ LKH, Merry Gentry series
16. Sarai - Jake Riordan (Adrien English series, Josh Lanyon) Rejar (Rejar, Dara Joy), Vaughn D'Angelo (Visions of Heat, Nalini Singh), Zarek of Moesia (Dance with the Devil, Sherrilyn Kenyon), Jonas (Breed Series, Lora Leigh), Sterling "Harvard" Chase from Kiss of Crimson Lara Adrian
17. Shannon - Sam Donovan (Mr. Perfect, Linda Howard) Sam Starrett (Troubleshooters series, Suzanne Brockmann), Max Baghat (Troubleshooter series, Suzanne Brockmann), Adam Hauptman (Mercedes Thompson series, Patricia Briggs), Captain Malcom Reynolds a.k.a. Capt. Tight Pants (Firefly/Serenity franchise & comics, Joss Whedon), Izzy Teague from Christina Skye's Code Name series
18. Sula - Rhage (Black Dagger Brotherhood series, JR Ward) Asa McIntyre (Promises Linger by Sarah McCarty), Dain (Lord of Scoundrels, Loretta Chase), Ian Witherspoon (At Love's Command, Samantha Kane), Nathaniel Bonner (Into the Wilderness, Sara Donati), Keir of the Cat from Warprize by Elizabeth Vaughan
19. Thea - Jamie Fraser (Outlander, Diana Gabaldon) Joscelin Verreuil (Kushiel's Legacy series, Jacqueline Carey), Jacob Black (Twilight Series, Stephanie Meyer), Batman! , Remy LeBeau a.k.a. Gambit (Uncanny X-Men, Chris Claremont), Roland Deschain from Stephen King's Dark Tower books20. Tracy - Zsadist (Black Dagger Brotherhood series, JR Ward), Phineas Tucker (Welcome to Temptation, Jennifer Crusie), Dorian (Psy/Changeling Series, Nalini Singh), Wrath (Dark Lover, BDB series by JR Ward), Caine Allen (Caine's Reckoning, Sarah McCarty) Daemon Sadi from the Black Jewels Trilogy by Anne Bishop
Step 1. Find your name. That is the order you choose in.
*Kate stumbles out of her hut barely able to walk from all the sexin the night before*
And remember Kristie and I have the power to delete your picks if you steal our men because you are on our turf!
*Chugs some rum and hands a 6 pack to Kristie*
So ready.... steady... go... Let's get ready to island rumble!!
And as an extra special bonus - Lisabea has been talking with the authors of some our DIK heroes and asked them to weigh in with their choices. And not only that!!! She has books to give away!!!