Saturday, August 30, 2008

Book: Claiming the Highlander (MacAllister Series #2)

Claiming the Highlander (Brotherhood/ MacAllister Series, Book #2) Claiming the Highlander by Kinley MacGregor

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
All it took was one fickle woman to ruin the lives of most of the members of two clans in the Highlands of Scotland. Clansmen from both families are still paying the price to this day (seven years later) and Maggie ingen Blar is sick of buring her family over this stupid feud. Using her brains she rallies the women of both clans to hide in the kirk (church) on her family's land and in the castle of the MacDonald's land. Suffering from loneliness, bad hygenie, and horrendous cooking, the men of the clans realize that Maggie is a pain in the butt and her influence has to be removed from their women's presence.

Their best idea? Send in Braden MacAllister, playboy extradinaire.

Problem? Maggie has been in love with Braden since she was a child of ten. How is she going to end the feud, save the laird AND her heart in one fell swoop?

Deep and emotionally, I enjoyed Kenyon/MacGregor's tone and the speed at which the plot moved. As always Kenyon/MacGregor probes the emotions behind the characters and doesn't leave you with a flat 2D picture of anyone. We can see their souls through her words.

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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Book: Master of Desire (MacAllister Series #1)

Master of Desire (Brotherhood/MacAllister Series, Book #1) Master of Desire by Kinley MacGregor

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars

A historical romance set in the England during the reign of Henry II. Draven, Earl of Ravenwood, is forced by his sovereign to take in the youngest daughter of his sworn enemy in an attempt to bring some truce between the two feuding households. This works for sometime as Emily and Draven get close. She is determined he will be her husband and he has made an oath to the King to return her to her father in one years time in the exact same way he left her. Old wounds and psychological trama come up for Draven leaving Emily's feelings battered but not bruised. Can she win him?

Overall, a good read. Not one of the best from Kenyon but a very good start to the MacAllister Series. The one part I didn't appreciate was that she threw in Sin's name close to the end in a very off-handedly way. If I hadn't already read some of the MacAllister series book already, I would have had no idea what she was talking about. Literally, it says Sin did something with Draven ... nothing is explained about who Sin is ... or why he was there. Like I said, I knew who Sin was but didn't expect him to show up in this book.

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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Book: A Pirate of Her Own

A Pirate of Her Own A Pirate of Her Own by Kinley MacGregor

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
A woman oppressed by the male dominated early Colonial times, we find Serenity James (a spinster and totally unmarriage-able at 25 - great ... where does that leave the rest of us?) in the office of her father's publishing house. She is a brilliant writer but her place is in the home not the work force.

After writing about The Sea Wolf, a privateer who frees enslaved Colonists from British ships, a stranger appears in the office. It takes no time for the reader to realize that he's attracted to her, even though (gasp) she's 25, unmarried, and wears conservative clothing. And clearly visa versa.

Somehow, she's taken aboard the ship by Jake, who is really one of Captain Drake's (aka the Sea Wolf's) friends. A woman on a ship full of men? Oh bad idea. So Drake stores her away in his own cabin ... which probably is like putting a lamb in the wolf's den and expecting him not to eat her ... literally.

As always, Kenyon/MacGreggor delves deeper into the character and their emotions than most romance novelists that I've read. She has a way to tell the story very nicely without being too cutsie pootsie. Well done.

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Sunday, August 24, 2008

Book: The Nymph King

The Nymph King The Nymph King by Gena Showalter

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
I'm not sure if I liked this book because of the plot etc ... or liked it because I like the way Gena Showalter writes.

This was the story of Valerian (btw - why do all romance novels have use the same 10 names for their lead male characters?) and Shaye. Val (I like to call him that in my head - it's Tabitha's fault! (read Sherrilyn Kenyon's Night Play and you will understand)) steals Shaye from her mother's 6th wedding (along with about 20 other women). Shaye is emotionally scarred from years of emotional, physcological and sometimes physical and sexual abuse at the hands of her mother and the revolving door step-father and step-siblings.

Slowly, Shaye warms to Val.

Here's what I don't understand. Shaye is set ... SET ... in her ways ... as anyone with half a brain who was treated like she was would be ... and holds her ground for the majority of the book. And then when Val needs her (read: is really horny for her) and he all but forces her (then says "Oh but don't worry, as I'm hovering above you in this precariously sexual way, I won't force anything on you ... just say stop." I'm screaming in my head: clearly, you have put yourself and Shaye in this position because you want to have your way with her. While that's well and good, she has said no a hundred times already. Don't you understand that "no" means "no"?)

Yeah that made the book a little lacking for me.

I did like the subplot of Brenna and Joachim (I assume that's said like Joaquim). It was a nice little throw in there. I'm still wondering what will happen to Shivawn (I assume that's said like the Gaelic female name Siobhan) and if he and Alyssa the vampire hooked up ...

guess I'll have to wait for the next one!

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Friday, August 22, 2008

Book: Savor Me Slowly

Savor Me Slowly (Alien Huntress Novel, Book #3) Savor Me Slowly by Gena Showalter

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
A fantastic third novel in the Alien Huntress series. Better than the first two, this third book focuses on Mishka Le'Ace, half-woman, half-machine and Jaxon. Held hostage for information he knows, Jaxon is saved by Le'Ace. We come to know both of their backgrounds while meeting up with Kyrin and Mia (Book #1), Lucius and Eden (Book #2).

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I'm still reading War and Peace. I'm almost 1/3rd of the way through it ... it's a long book and it's my "home-reading" book (i.e. the book I'm reading at home - as I have a book for different places to read like while working or trying to fall asleep etc).

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Book: Bitten

Bitten (Women of the Otherworld, Book 1) Bitten by Kelley Armstrong

My review

I'm starting to fall for the "werewolf" version of Para-romance. I love the "family" dynamic of a pact (and especially in Bitten, the dynamic between Clay and Elena).

Very well written.

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I love this poem. I just wanted to share it.

Bluebird by Charles Bukowski

there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too tough for him,
I say,
stay in there,
I'm not goingto let anybody see you.

there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I pore whiskey on him and inhale
cigarette smokeand the whores and the bartenders
and the grocery clerksnever know that
in there.

there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too tough for him,
I say,
stay down, do you want to mess
me up?
you want to screw up the
you want to blow my book sales in

there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too clever, I only let him out
at night sometimes
when everybody's asleep.
I say, I know that you're there,
so don't be
then I put him back,
but he's singing a little
in there, I haven't quite let him
dieand we sleep together like
with our
secret pact
and it's nice enough to
make a man
weep, but I don't
weep, do

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Book: Blue Twilight (Twilight Series #11)

Blue Twilight (Twilight Series Book 11) Blue Twilight by Maggie Shayne

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
The human side of Shayne's vampire world. Elegant and lovely. I almost liked Maxine and Lou's story (both of whom are human) better than some of the vampires' stories.

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Saturday, August 16, 2008

Book: Jewel of Atlantis

Jewel Of Atlantis Jewel Of Atlantis by Gena Showalter

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
With the reappearance of Grayson James (sister to Katie James from the Stone Prince), we already know the story is going to kick major butt. A deep bond he doesn't fully understand and a mission in his mind, Gray is drawn to an enslaved beauty in a market place. Tension, tempers, and libidos run wild when Gray breaks the beauty, who he calls Jewel because she doesn't have a name, free ... with sexy results.

Action, adventure, and a good old fashion true love story ... what more can a girl ask for.

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Book: A Sound of Thunder

A Sound of Thunder and Other Stories A Sound of Thunder and Other Stories by Ray Bradbury

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
Deep and disturbingly beautiful. Reminds us of how the most insignificant of things can change everything (for the better or worse).

On the eve of a election, a party of rich men purchase a time travel safari to the past to hunt a T-Rex. While the safari guides have taken every precaution to minimize the impact of the hunting party on the past, one member violates the rules and leaves the designated path. Upon their return to the present the group finds that the world has been drastically altered by the seemingly innocuous death of a pre-historic butterfly.

The imagiary of the mashed golden butterfly embedded in the mud of Eckelsly's shoe still haunts me to this day even though I've read this book a few times.

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The book was much, much better than the movie version of the tale. The movie takes it step further asking you to assume that we didn't know the businessman stepped off the path and to assume that they all thought the safari was a success. Then we are forced to watch the head of the safari guide team, aptle played by Edward Burns, find a scientist who knows all about prehistoric times and somehow, too, how to reverse all the changes that are now sweeping over the world in waves (literally in waves).

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Book: Night's Edge

Night's Edge Night's Edge by Maggie Shayne

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
I read only Maggie Shane's story in this. It was well thought out and executed.

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Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Book: Tantalize

Tantalize Tantalize by Cynthia Leitich Smith

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars
Honestly, the set up was good. We knew the main character (Quincie) and we understood her feelings for her bestfriend/half-werewolf (Kieran). But, things started to fall apart after that. Just expected things happened. There was no illusions that your assumptions might be off or wrong ... and you knew EXACTLY what was going to happen.

Really, there was an acceptable amount of rising action and then it just ENDED?!?! There was no explaination of why what happened really happened. And Quincie was upset by her own actions because she didn't want to be all alone again?

I hate to say it but if there is another book in this series I will probably look for it at the library because I hate not knowing the whole story. But I didn't really like this book all that much. I just want to know what is going to happen between Quincie, Brad, and Kieran.

And when did the Principal become a vampire?

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Book: Edge of Twilight (Twilight Series #10)

Edge Of Twilight (Twilight Series Book 10) (Mira Romance) Edge Of Twilight by Maggie Shayne

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
What happens when the daughter of two vampires finally grows up? Love.

Jaded hearts ... broken spirits ... a PLAUSIBLE vampire pregnancy (i.e. not Breaking Dawn's craptacular version of it - which almost reads like Stephenie Meyer read this and then went to work on her own novel). Where S. Meyer's dropped the ball, this series and this book run with it and score!

The only thing that I didn't like was that I couldn't picture Edge/Edgar in my mind at all. I can't remember if he wasn't described well enough or if my mind didn't want to hold on to the description but it didn't seem right. I appreciate books where I can picture the characters better.

Otherwise ... fantastic!

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Monday, August 11, 2008

Book: Something Wicked This Way Comes

Something Wicked This Way Comes Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
Fantastic horror story that reminded me of the dark Turn of the Screw.

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Book: Kitty and The Midnight Hour

Kitty and the Midnight Hour (Kitty Norville, Book # 1) Kitty and the Midnight Hour by Carrie Vaughn

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
Kitty Norville is your typical werewolf and that suits her just fine. Soon, she's "getting too big for her britches." The pack no longer keeps her happy or safe for that matter. After staving off an attack by paranormal hitman, she delves deeper into herself to find the real wolf within.

Soon, Kitty's radio talk show takes off and lands her in syndication. Her pack might hate her, the vamps might be after her, a nut job "cure" cult might be gunning for her but her advice and general sense of self are spot on.

I wasn't surprised by the ending in the least. Meg was bad news ... what did surprise me was what Carl decided to do. T.J. was the saving grace in this novel. I almost burst into tears when the novel was over. I can't to get my hands on number 2.

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Sunday, August 10, 2008

Book: Dead Witch Walking

Dead Witch Walking (Rachel Morgan/The Hollows, Book 1) Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
Action packed beginning to this series. I liked this hands and feet above the Anita Blake series. I can't wait for the next book to find out if Ivy wants Rachel's friendship or blood. And Jenks? I LOVE HIM! He's a great character! Nick better be all he promises to be.

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Friday, August 8, 2008

Moby - Dick, bees, frogs and thunderstorms

I think this is funny … which is why people shouldn’t let me near their small children:

That's, Like, All We Did in Bio Lab Last Year
Girl #1: Did you know babies have natural reflexes? Like, if you stick your finger in their hand, they'll grab it, and if you try to pull it away, they'll hold on to it for like a minute.
Girl #2: Did you know if you punch a baby in the face, it'll cry?

--Columbia University

Overheard by: mkb
via Overheard in New York, Jul 31, 2008

I finally finished Herman Melville’s Moby – Dick. Now, I’m going to start War and Peace. I know … I know … it does seem pretentious to read it. Almost like I am trying to look smart for reading something so large and complex but, really, I LOVE Tolstoy. Anna Karenina is my absolute favorite book. Well almost the absolute; it’s a tie between Anna Karenina, Jane Eyre, and Mansfield Park.

Herman Melville : Redburn, White-Jacket, Moby-Dick (Library of America) Herman Melville : Redburn, White-Jacket, Moby-Dick by Herman Melville

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars

Lisa Simpson: "You can't take revenge on an animal. That's the point of Moby - Dick!"

Homer Simpson: "The point of Moby - Dick is to be yourself!"

- The Simpons (Episode Title: The Fat and The Furriest)

It’s been thundering outside since about 1 p.m. and being 12:30 p.m. … it’s been nasty out. It just started raining for the first time though! It’s been about 65 or 70 for about two days. It’s nice. Michaeleen said she loves it because she finally is comfortable. Poor kid. It must suck to be pregnant in the middle of the summer.

When I went outside to get the towels (that were dripping wet from washing Molly) from the back porch I noticed a bright green frog in my flowers. It was so cute. And then, out of no where, a honey bee popped in looking for nectar and legs full of pollen.

rating: 3 of 5 stars

Read this while on my trip through Ireland during the summer of 1997. I was supposed to be reading The Scarlett Letter ... but this looked more interesting!

The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts by Maxine Hong Kingston

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
Read this during English 2 at Tufts. Honestly, I didn't read it the first time around because I wasn't very happy about being made to read it. The second time around I was supposed to read it for English 62: Short Stories with L. Bamber. I liked it that time!

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Deliver Us from Evie Deliver Us from Evie by M. E. Kerr

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars
Read for Girls' Books (grad level English class at Tufts).

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Weetzie Bat Weetzie Bat by Francesca Lia Block

My review

rating: 1 of 5 stars
Was forced to read this for a class on Girls Books.

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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Book: Dreamcatcher

Dreamcatcher Dreamcatcher by Stephen King

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
When I read this book, it was because the movie was coming out in the following month. Parts had me yawning but for the most part it was good. The ending was nice too ... I live near the Quabin so it was cool. Always appreciate a local setting.

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BD: Bad writing or good fanfic?

I saw two movies in the last day: 300 and Gladiator.

It wasn’t a theme I was going with. Actually, the only reason I was watching them was because of Pat. He’s got this action movie addiction, I think.

One word: Homoeroticism. I thought that the spoof, Meet the Spartans, was better than this movie. And Xerxes? Really? Not a great character … and when I went on to look up who the actor was that played him, he looked nothing like Xerxes. So I have to give some credit to the makeup/costume people then!

2 of 5 stars.

I never saw this movie when it came out in the theatres because I was having trouble with my panic attacks inside the theatres at that point in time. I missed a lot of good movies releases because of it.

I had a boyfriend, Chris, during my freshman year of college (when this movie came out) who was OBSESSED with this movie. He said that before his school’s PAC 10 (he went to UCLA) crew race that they all went together and saw this movie. I didn’t understand why it would “jazz them up” and make them want to win the race. I mean all the people die. It’s insane. But, it must have worked because they won PAC 10 and got a gold medal and everything.

We didn’t last long after that …

Anyways … I didn’t find this to be a good movie at all. Great panoramas of the countryside in Spain, Italy and Germany but I didn’t like the acting, plot or characters.

3 of 5 stars

In the last few days, I bought two books from And we all know about my major obsession with reading. I’m up to about a book and a half a day; that’s including taking massive amounts of time to do things that aren’t reading. It’s sad when the ladies/men at the library know me by name and sight AND book choices.

Breaking Dawn
The much anticipated fourth book in the Twilight Saga. Much anticipated …not much liked (on my part at least).

It was either really good fanfiction (see: or really, really bad writing on Stephenie Meyer’s part. I’m not 100% sure.

It was disappointing that the author created such a real and vibrant world with such endearing characters only to have that all come crashing down in the last book. I mean really, she set up rules in her Twilight world for a reason and then went against them all. She specifically said that VAMPIRES CAN NOT HAVE BABIES. Bella gets pregnant, has a baby and then names it Reneesme … and calls it Nessie. Really? Like the loch Ness Monster? REALLY?

I can’t even recommend this book to people because I don’t ever plan on picking it up again to read it a second time.

The second book I bought was Acheron by Sherrilyn Kenyon. I haven’t had the time to read it because I’ve been writing and crap for the passed few days and reading two other books.

Moby – Dick
The other book I’m “reading” (i.e. listening to on CD while I go for walks with the dogs or putz around on my computer) is Moby – Dick.

I was loving the beginning where Herman Melville (the author for those not in the know) was discussing Nantucket and such. Really made me miss it. I haven’t been there for a number of years and now I know I’ll have to go before the fall comes! Maybe I’ll convince Sue to go with me or Pat, Michaeleen, and Aden.

Anyways, I’m “reading” this afternoon when the narrator starts discussing the sperm whale oil that they have on the boat. It’s hardened into little balls that float in the rest of the oil and they’ve got to liquidate them by squeezing them back into oil. He goes on and on about how lovely it is to squeeze the hardened oil balls. Then, he starts talking about how he once took a hardened oil ball behind the mast and bit into it. I almost lost my damn lunch it was narsty!

I’m on Chapter 137 right now … only 3.3 hours to go ... then I can start War and Peace. Whoo hoo!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Movies for all ...

I've been so bored lately and watching movies up the wazoo.

Today, I watched Definitely, Maybe. It was a good enough movie. I'm glad I didn't go to see it in the theatre because it would have been a waste of money.

I'm in love with Ryan Renolds. He's my "Hollywood Boyfriend," he just doesn't know it (as Pat would say).

He and Isla Fisher were terrific in this movie. Rachel Weisz was too. I think she and Kate Beckinsale are gorgeous so it's hard for such pretty people to make a bad movie ...

But they did. This was supposed to be a romanic/comedy ... heavy on the romance. I wasn't in love with it.

At all.

I would give it 3.5 out of 5 stars.

I would much rather have watched The Lake House.

The first time I watched The Lake House, I bawled like a little baby. I know a bunch of people that would give the movie a 1 out of 5 stars but this is almost perfect to me.

I felt the emotions between Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock. It helped that Keanu is a hottie.

I can take or leave action and/or horror movies for the most part but give me a great zombie movie, comedy or romance, and I'm in heaven!

The Lake House is definitely a 5 out of 5 stars for me.

On the other hand ... Be Kind, Rewind sucked. I don't even think I could call it a comedy. I didn't find it funny.

Then again, I don't know that I've ever thought Jack Black was funny.

He was alright in Shallow Hal but School of Rock sucked ass.

I say: Jack Black needs to stop making movies. He's not funny. Like Adam Sandler lately hasn't been that great. Stop while you are ahead!