Friday, January 29, 2010

J.Kaye's 2010 100+ Reading Challenge: I'm in!

J. Kaye's 2010 Reading Challenge: 100+ Reading Challenge

1. The goal is to read 100 or more books. Anyone can join. You don't need a blog to participate.

2. Audio, Re-reads, eBooks, YA, Manga, Graphic Novels, Library books, Novellas, Young Reader, Nonfiction – as long as the book has an ISBN or equivalent or can be purchased as such, the book counts.

What doesn't count: Individual short stories or individual books in the Bible.

3. No need to list your books in advance. You may select books as you go. Even if you list them now, you can change the list if needed.

4. Crossovers from other reading challenges count.

5. Challenge begins January 1st thru December, 2010. Books started before the 1st do not count.

6. When you sign up under Mr. Linky, put the direct link to your post where your books will be listed. Include the URL to this post so that other viewers can find this fun challenge. If you’d prefer to put your list in the sidebar of your blog, please leave your viewers the link to the sign up page. Again, so viewers can join the challenge too.

I've decided to join this challenge. My first challenge, officially, for this year. It is an easy one since I'm pretty sure I can read 100 books in one year. I've been doing that for many years now, I've just never catalogued it all.

So far this year I have read the following:
1. The LIghtning Thief by Rick Riordan
2. Seduced by a Rogue by Amanda Scott
3. Knit, Purl, Die by Anne Canadeo
4. Gentleman Prefer Succubi by Jilly Myles
5. House Rules by Jodi Picoult

Off to a good start, I'd say.

Come join along!

Happy Reading!

red headed book child

Week in Review: January 24-30 (a day early!)

Week in Review

Good Morning all! I am anticipating this weekend to be a long one so I am doing my week in review a day early. My little one is chewing on one of his cars with his juice cup in one hand watching Sesame Street. I figure I have a few minutes to start!

This week kicked our butt again. My husband does on call Maintenance in rotation and this was his week. He got a ton of calls and we made the mistake of making plans. Of course, they all got interrupted and I had to leave work several times early...blah blah. It made for a long week of running around.

So far, the kiddo only likes to read about going Potty on the chair but doesn't quite want to do it yet. No pressure! The funny thing is that he gets quite a honk out of watching me do my business in the john. Privacy? What is that again?

On to my exciting Book news this week. I am registered for BEA and the Book Blogger Convention. I have booked hotels and made plans to meet some of you lovely blogger pals! The last thing is to find that perfect cheap flight....! I can not wait. I am so excited to get away and see New York. It's been too long. The last time I made my trip was when I was 5 months pregnant with kiddo. My best friend Trever (my NYC travel companion) was so bloated and exhausted by the end of that trip due to my constant need to eat every hour. He was determined to keep up with me and suffered at the end of it!!!

I finished House Rules by Jodi Picoult and boy did that one take it out of me. My review should be up early next week.

I started Ecstasy Unveiled by Larissa Ione for the Blog Tour. Saucy, indeed!

I also started The 19th Wife by David Ebershoff and Bloodroot by Amy Greene, a first novel by an exciting new voice.

I am determined to do an Awards post early next week and give back to all of those that honored me!! I promise.

I joined J. Kaye's 100+ Reading Challenge for 2010. I think I can, I think I can!
Oh, hell, I KNOW I can!

Lastly, though a few days late, the winner for Knit, Purl, Die by Anne Canadeo is Jeannie (Old Bookworm) at Pine Cottage Books! Thanks to all for entering!
Jeannie, I'll be emailing you for an address!

Happy Reading!

red headed book child

Thursday, January 28, 2010

I must catch my breath...

Folks, I just turned the last page on this book a few short minutes ago and I still can't catch my breath. Boy, did she stir up a lot with this one. It's going to take a few days for me to put into words all that I felt while reading this one but I have to say, put March 2 on your calendar because this is one Jodi Picoult you will NOT want to miss.

How the heck am I going to jump to Paranormal Romance now?

Oh boy.

red headed book child

Monday, January 25, 2010

Review #41: Gentleman Prefer Succubi by Jill Myles

Title: Gentleman Prefer Succubi

Author: Jill Myles
Publisher: Pocket Star Books (Simon and Schuster)
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Format: Review Copy from publisher for Blog Tour
ISBN: 978-1-4165-7282-4

Rating: 8/10

My Review and Description:

This book was exactly what I wanted to read when I embarked on my saucy romance reading adventure.

Holy Cow. Yummy. Oh my.

These are phrases that bubbled out of my mouth as I read. Simply said, this was steamy and funny at the same time.

Jackie Brighton was not a hottie. She was your average Jane who worked in a museum. Pretty ho hum. She wakes up one morning however, in a dumpster, with a body that she doesn't recognize. An AWESOME body she doesn't recognize. Turns out she was bit by a vampire. Turns out she had a one night stand with a fallen angel (See cover of book. Yummy). Turns out she is now a Succubus, an immortal creature who feeds off of sexual desire. In other words, she has to have sex...a lot or else she doesn't feel so hot. It takes quite a bit of time for Jackie to get used to her new lifestyle and her new smokin' body.
So begins her adventure with the fallen angel (Noah), the vampire that bit her and the only other Succubus that exists in the area (Remy). It is fast paced and fun to read.

Admittedly, reading the back of the book, I didn't really know what to expect and perhaps I was leaning towards the cheesy or the over the top. But it was really funny, cleverly written, and didn't take itself too seriously. The sex scenes were steamy, the banter between the characters was snappy and the story was easy to follow (no crazy glossary or family trees or descriptions of a bazillion types of demons, etc).

I really enjoyed the heck out of this one. I am actually going to read the second book in this series that just came out, Succubi Like it Hot. This is a good ol' saucy sexy romancing read.

Please check out the author at her website. She is definitely one to watch. Jill Myles

Thank you to Pocket Books for sending me a copy to read!

Happy Reading!

red headed book child

Check out the other stops on this fabulous BLOG TOUR!

All About {n}: Patricia’s Vampire Notes: The Cajun Book Lady: Book Series Reviews: Drey’s Library: Book Junkie: She Reads: Pam’s Private Reflections: Books, Books Everywhere: Books Gardens & Dogs: My Book Views: Cheryl’s Book Nook: Readaholic: My Overstuffed Bookshelf: I Heart Book Gossip: My Guilty Pleasures: Jen’s Book Talk: Brizmus Blogs About Books: A Book Bloggers Diary: Ramblings of a Teenage Bookworm: Book Soulmates: Book Lush: Wendy’s Minding Spot: Parajunkee’s View: The Wayfaring Writer: You Wanna Know What I Think?: Reading with Tequila: SciFi Guy: Temple Library Reviews: The Bibliophilic Book Blog:

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Week in Review: January 17-23

~Week in Review~

Where did the week go? Where, I ask you?

It was a busy little week in our household. We are working on potty training and I've never said "Poop" and "Potty" more in my life. LIttle Red Head had his 2 year checkup and everyone agrees he is brilliant and off the charts! Well, no actually, but the nurse raised an eyebrow and said "Really?" when he started to say his letters in the book we brought. Brilliant, I know.! I changed doctors to the doc who saw him when he hurt his leg because I liked his direct approach. Our last doctor was a bit too mellow for me. I need someone who matches my hysteria with answers. Like for example, the little one had a sore neck one day last week and I freaked out thinking it was Menigitis. (I know, I'm not's just the crazy that I am now). So, I told the doctor this and he said "Okay, let's talk about Menigitis!" Direct, I like that. Does he think I'm a special blend of crazy? You bet...but he still treats me with respect and answers my over-the-top questions.
Good visit overall. Got the second H1N1 shot. Didn't like that. 43% percentile for weight. 13% for height. And still 100% percentile in head. Big Brains.

The rest of the week was work, running around to finish up Christmas parties for my husbands work and transferring my Grandma back to the nursing home. Yeah! She is doing okay...very slowly but surely coming back. Really it's up to her and her will to further her progress. Cross your fingers!

On to my week in books. I've been a real loser when it comes to commenting this week. I've been reading what I can though quickly! I'll try to do better this week.

I finished Gentlemen Prefer Succubi by Jill Myles for the blog tour this week. I LOVED this book and am very excited to tell you all about it. It was the PERFECT saucy romance read for me. I also finished Knit, Purl, Die by Anne Canadeo and am doing a Giveaway (see last post). I started House Rules by Jodi Picoult and I am 110% absorbed and am having a hard time pulling my head up out of this one. Here's the thing with Jodi. Now that I have a child, she is very different to read, MORE emotional, if you can imagine. I have read Handle With Care and this one since I've had my son and my heart thumps loudly as I read and it doesn't take me long to come to tears. Damn you, Jodi! :)

I received my copies of Beautiful Dead by Eden Maguire and Merlin's Harp by Anne Eliot Crompton for the Blog Tours I'm doing in February and March for Sourcebooks Fire. Check them out here. I'm really excited to read these amazing teen titles from this awesome publisher. I'll also be giving away a copy of each of these.

This week I hope to finish House Rules and start on my next Blog Tour title which I received on Friday. Ecstasy Unveiled by Larissa Ione. This will be the final romance read for this saucy month. Next I have to read The 19th Wife by David Ebershoff for my book club next month. Quite a change from sexy Paranormal Romance to a book about Mormons. I've got range, I tell ya'! RANGE!!!!

I think that's it for books.

Today I am heading off to see The Lovely Bones with my crazy friend, Rachel to further our Book/Movie Adventure. I have made the decision though to NOT read the book. I have been told by a few people it's very graphic in the abuse and well, I just don't need to read that.

After the movie, I am going to pretend to whoop it up with my husband and in laws during the Vikings vs. Saints game today.

Simply said, I am a baseball gal.

Have a great week everyone and as always, Happy Reading!

red headed book child

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Review #40: Knit, Purl, Die by Anne Canadeo (BLOG TOUR & Giveaway!)

Title: Knit, Purl, Die

Author: Anne Canadeo
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Format: Review copy from Publisher for BLOG TOUR
ISBN: 978-1-4165-9812-1
Series: A Black Sheep Knitting Mystery

Rating: 7/10

My Review and Description:

Knit, Purl, Die is the second book in the new series by Anne Canadeo. (1st book in series is called While My Pretty One Knits). I had not read the first book and I was not lacking in information in order to enjoy this one. This book would fall under cozy mystery. It takes place in a lovely little east coast town of Plum Harbor. The characters are five smart, witty professional women who knit together, laugh together and get wrapped up in solving crimes.

Maggie is the yarn shop owner and where a lot of the story takes place. This is where they all gather and gossip and knit and whatnot. Lucy, Suzanne, Dana, and Phoebe round out the group. Gloria, the wealthy, beautiful and newly married to a new young husband, is the newest addition to the group.

All is fine and dandy until Gloria turns up dead, face down in her own swimming pool. Suspicions form around her new husband, her ex flame and even her own tendency for over indulgence. Did she drink a little too much and slip in? Did someone push her? Who would want to kill someone so fabulous?

The ladies are drawn into the mystery being the last ones to see her alive. I liked all of the women. They were not too stereotypical, and you didn't get overwhelmed with too much detail about each of them. Some how the author explained enough and built them enough that you got a good glimpse into who they were and enjoyed their company.

For a cozy mystery, it wasn't overly campy. It seemed fun and sincere at the same time. The ladies weren't overly ambitious sleuths that stuck their noses into everything. They seemed like they were honestly wanting to find their friend's killer.

My rating falls at a seven. It was a quick read, enjoyable and wrapped up nicely. What keeps series like these going are definitely the main characters. If they are interesting enough to read, then it doesn't really matter the "mystery" at hand. I could see myself picking another up because of this reason. For some reason, books that have knitting shops or bookstores or cafes, as crucial settings make me at ease. ? Just me, I guess. I don't knit but I have friends that do and I totally Zen out when watching them.

The last neat thing about this book is that at the end you get knitting ideas and recipes that were mentioned in the book. The recipes and ideas are written by each of the different women who previously mentioned them. Very cute, I thought! And some darn good recipes I think I may try.

Overall, a decent recommend for fans of Laura Childs and Maggie Sefton.

I am passing along my copy in a Giveaway.

Giveaway Rules:
-You must be a follower.
-You must reside in the US or Canada.
-You must leave me your email.
-You must like to knit...gotcha! j/k
-You must send me cookies...gotcha again.

I will pick a winner on Monday, January 25.

Thank you to Pocket Books for sending me a copy to read and review!

As always, Happy Reading!

red headed book child

Here are the other BLOG TOUR participants. Check them out too!

My Book Views:
Brizmus Blogs About Books:
Renee’s Reads:
Book Junkie:
Pam’s Private Reflections:
Starting Fresh:
Frugal Plus:
Books, Books Everywhere:
My Guilty Pleasures:
Just Another New Blog:
A Book Bloggers Diary:
Books Reviews by Buuklvr81:
Reading at the Beach:
Foreign Circus Library:
The Cajun Book Lady:
Wendy’s Minding Spot:
Books, Movies & Chinese Food:
Pudgy Penguin Perusals:
Between the Pages:
Marta’s Meanderings:
Chaotic Book Obsession:
Savey Spender:
Libby’s Library News:
Books & Needlepoint:
Booksie’s Blog:
Jeanne's Ramblings:
I Read:
Bless Their Hearts Mom:
Steph the Bookworm:
Sharon's Garden of Book Reviews:
Book Dilettante:

Monday, January 18, 2010

Review #39: Seduced by a Rogue by Amanda Scott

Title: Seduced by a Rogue

Author: Amanda Scott
Publisher: Hachette Book Group-Grand Central Publishing
Format: Copy provided by publisher for review and Blog Tour
Genre: Romance

Rating: 6/10

The description (from the back of the book):

Flaxen-haired and beautiful, Lady Mairi Dunwythie is heiress apparent to the wealthy nobleman blocking Clan Maxwell's attempt to control much of southwest Scotland. Her first meeting with handsome Robert Maxwell ignites an attraction that is immediate, intense, and almost irresistible-until she learns he is asking her father to submit to the Maxwell demands. Rob is a warrior, a man of action. So when Mairi's father stands defiant, Rob daringly abducts her. As clan tensions mount, passion escalates between the lovers, tempting them beyond reason. Soon they must choose between loyalty and love...before the eruption of all-out clan war.

My Review:

This was my first romance book read in a very long time. I can't even tell you when I read one last. I chose this title because I wanted to broaden my reading horizons to a genre that seems to well loved by many. I know very little about the genre as a whole except that there are many different types. Paranormal, Contemporary, Historical, etc.

This would fall under Historical romance. The author certainly worked hard to create the setting of 14th century Scotland, very descriptive. The story itself was loosely based on an unpublished manuscript that a friend had given to the author. It was written in Broad Scotch detailing the lives of two Dunwythie sisters who met and married their husbands. Seduced by a Rogue is about the oldest sister, Mairi.

This alone was pretty cool. The book had a heart and had substance. I guess I was expecting more fluff, more romance, more sex, etc but that was just from my own inexperience when it comes to romance books. The story took its time building up to the two main characters meeting, bickering, and eventually falling in love. All in all, a unconventional courtship considering their relationship really "begins" after
he kidnaps her.

Having not read a lot of of historical romance, I think it was pretty well done. I would rate it a 6. I think it would cater to a specific audience who would like more history and politics thrown into a cat and mouse romance game. Admittedly I was in the mood for saucy sexy romance and this was more a witty, combative courtship with love in the end. Not a bad thing on the book's part, it was simply my mood.

I am glad I signed on for this blog tour. Anything that opens my eyes to a
new genre is refreshing. Amanda Scott is the author of over 25 books and can be found on her website here.

Blog Tour runs through January 20 and a host of my fellow bloggers are participating. Check them out too!

Thank you to Hachette for providing me a copy of the book!

Happy Reading!

red headed book child

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Week in Review: January 10-16

Week in Review

Well, I just haven't posted enough this week, have I? The new year is turning out to be busier than the holidays. My Grandma is still in the hospital after having been moved up to a better facility here in the Twin Cities. She is doing okay I guess for her age (94, WOW!) but it takes time, the doctors say. So, I've been visiting a lot since I am the closest to this hospital. I can't wait to have that beer with her that she's been asking for. :)

I've also been working more and trying to figure out my next move for this year.
Last year went by so fast and it was a huge life shift for me. I was laid off last March from a job I had for over ten years. I had no idea what to do next and my fierce nature propelled me to get out there quick and support my family.
I was fortunate to be hired at a wonderful non-profit a few short months after my lay off. I then decided to go back and work part-time with books because i missed working with them so.
So my two part-time gigs have helped me transition nicely and help put food on the table. How long do I do this?
But, like I said, it's a new year and I am planning on many adventures.
My kiddo will be ready for pre-school.
We will be trying for a second (oh my!).
I'm going to BEA and the Book Blogger Convention.
I would like to take a mini-vacation with my husband.

This leads me to figuring out how and what's next. What do I do for myself when he's in preschool? How do I emotionally prep myself for a second? What do I want to do before my life will be consumed by a newborn? How much money do I have to save before going to NYC? What the heck would I say to my husband on a vacation when we wouldn't be interrupted every minute? And how much can I read this year?


Well, that's just too much to think about so on to my week in books. I haven't written any new reviews because I've been finishing up reading the three romance books I'm doing Blog Tours for next week!!! I finished Seduced by a Rogue; Knit, Purl and Die and am working on closing up Gentlemen Prefer Succubi.

And, remember when I said i was only going to stick to one review request per month? Well, (nervous laugh) I stretched that a little bit in the next few months!
I couldn't help it! There were too many luscious looking books out there that begged me to read them. It's my blog, darnit, I'll read if I want too!

So here are the books I'm signed up for.
Cowboy Trouble by Joanne Kennedy (romance)
An Earl to Enchant by Amelia Grey (historical romance)
A Certain Wolfish Charm by Lydia Dare (romance)
Beautiful People by Wendy Holden (women's fiction)
Knit, Purl and Die by Anne Canadeo (cozy mystery)-
Beautiful Dead by Eden Maguire (Young Adult)-Sourebooks Fire
Merlin's Harp by Anne Eliot Crompton (Young Adult)- Sourebooks Fire

In my defense, these are spread out over the next four months! :)

On to other books that came my way, I received the beautiful new paperback edition of Feathered Serpent by Xu Xiaobin due out from Atria International (Simon and Schuster) in early February.
Check it out!

Now if you excuse me, I must get back to him (see cover of Gentlemen Prefer Succubi)

Happy Reading!

red headed book child

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

2009 Challenge Update

Michelle at The True Book Addict created this fantastic challenge=
very low key, very do-able.
I suck. I didn't finish. Not much more to say than that. poo.

I made the mistake of reading that darn Christmas Cookie Club book and it went down hill from there. I picked up my second choice Matchless by Gregory Maguire
and just lost interest.

Darnit anyway. Not even sure it's worth writing a post about it but I was digging around my blog and cleaning some things up and there it was. The Challenge Button. I feel I somehow disappointed the Santa Claus in the picture.

I am determined, however, to finish the Fall/Winter Mystery Challenge, by golly. I have 2 books to go and they are both Leslie Meier mysteries. Piece of cake...right?

Well, lesson learned. Don't go jumping on every Challenge bandwagon. I am going to create my own so I will only disappoint myself (totally used to that). Ha!

red headed book child

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Week in Review: January 3-9

Week in Review

Has it really been a few weeks since I've done a Week in Review? Boy the Holidays really have gotten away from me.

Well, thank goodness I'm here now. Whew!

Unfortunately not a grand exciting week or weeks of book reading. Too much wine, presents, nut goodie bars, fuzzy slippers and sleep. I had all of these grand illusions to finish The Alienist and the not-yet-released Jodi Picoult. I wanted to get lost in a great pile of literature.

What did I finish? Seduced by a Rogue by Amanda Scott (hunky romance) and The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan (young readers). Well, no offense to either one of them but not exactly the meaty novels I was planning on jumping into. Oh well, I had a blast anyway. Besides I'm in January now and it's Saucy Reading Month. So, fellas, forget your shirts, I'm coming your way.

Oh, before I forget= I won the Honest Scrap Award from Nikki at A Haunt of Ancient Peace and Celtic Lady from Blog o' the Irish. THANK YOU BOTH! I have to pass it on to others and tell you all a bunch of secrets about me. I promise I will do that this week!

For books I received this past week, there have been a few.

I won a copy of City of Ashes by Clarke from Anna at Anna's Book Blog (thank you!).

I got a copy of Christine Falls by Benjamin Black (gritty Irish thriller) from

I checked out New Years Eve Murder by Leslie Meir and Every Dead Thing by John Connolly from my awesome local library.

I snagged an ARC of Roses by Leila Meacham from work. A meaty, delicious novel! I can't wait. And also, an ARC of The Girl Next Door by Elizabeth Noble.

Anyhoo, my world of books may not have been very exciting but unfortunately some family emergency news did kick my life into high gear the past few days. My 94 year old Grandma who helped raise me had to have surgery. She pulled through and is resting comfortably (knock on wood!) She is forever in my prayers that her journey to recovery is smooth!

Until next time, Happy reading!

red headed book child

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Review #38: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

Title: The Lightning Thief (Book 1)

Author: Rick Riordan
Publisher: Miramax Books (Hyperion)
Format: Paperback purchased
Genre: Young Readers 8-12
Series: Percy Jackson and the Oympians
ISBN: 078683865-5

Rating: 9/10

My Review and Description:

What a fun book! I am so glad I finally read this. It's been on my shelf for years now! Percy Jackson is really fun lead character full of personality and fire and energy. I grew to really like him throughout his adventures and I really look forward to continuing on to the other books as well.

Percy Jackson is a 12 year old kid in and out of all the boarding schools in New York. He's smart but dyslexic, has ADHD and well, kind of a temper. After getting kicked out of Yancy Academy in NYC, he heads home to the small apartment he used to live in with his mom and stepfather.

His stepfather is a jerk, of course, and he wishes it was just him and his mom. He is happy, though, to find out his mom planned a weekend trip to their cabin for just Percy and her.

The trip there begins all of the adventure. But to go on, I would have to give away some plot points. Not good! You must discover them on your own! Let's just say it involves monsters and Gods in the mythological form! And Percy is the key to preventing a war.

A former co-worker of mine once described this series as "sparkly" and I would agree. Though certainly rich with detail of stuff you learned in school it also bubbles with delight, whimsy, fun and adventure. I can see this filling the void left behind by Harry Potter. I'm cool with that!

The movie is due out on February 12 and is produced/directed by the same people who did the first Harry Potter. It is big, bright, glossy and cinematic. Only problem is that the boy that plays Percy looks a wee bit older than 12.(16 maybe?) I guess a little marketing towards the Twilight/Harry Potter age is why this is. ?

Check out this website for the trailer. Percy Jackson-The Movie

The rest of the series goes like this:
The Sea of Monsters- Book 2
Titan's Curse- Book 3
Battle of the Labyrinth- Book 4
The Last Olympian- Book 5

Can I read them all by the movie release date? Probably not but I do want to read the rest at some point.

Happy Reading!

red headed book child

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

You call it January, I call it "Saucy Reading Month!"

Hello everyone!

Remember in my 2010 post when I said I wanted to branch out a bit in my reading to the massive genre that is ROMANCE? Well, I'm starting NOW. I need to kick back and read some fun, sexy, saucy, sassy reads with covers that have men who have somehow forgotten their shirts!

So, I am doing TWO blog tours this month that I am super excited about.

First up, Seduced by a Rogue by Amanda Scott. BLOG TOUR date is January 18.

And the second is Gentlemen Prefer Succubi by Jill Myles. BLOG TOUR date is January 25.

Stop on by my blog on those dates and read what I think as I embark on my little adventure in romance. I may even do a little giveaway to spread the love.

Happy Reading!

red headed book child