Wednesday, January 31, 2018

From Page to Reel - Inferno



Wow it has been a very long time since this meme graced the pages of this blog. I am so glad to be able to bring this back for 2018. With more and more books being made into movies in the last couple of years, and more to come, there is no shortage of material. I am a HUGE movie fan, and there is nothing more that excites me than a movie being made of a book I really loved. Of course, nothing is also more disappointing when the movie isn't what you expect. Which is why this meme could get a little fun.

Also, these posts will likely have spoilers, so proceed with caution and don't say I didn't warn you ahead of time!

Today, I want to take an in-depth look at Inferno, by Dan Brown and the movie picture that followed based on this book. 



DEFINITELY SPOILERS ON THIS ONE SO CAUTION AHEAD!!

Monday, January 29, 2018

Book Cover of the Month - January


 
It's the first book cover post of  2018, and I could not be happier to continue this monthly feature. It is definitely something I look forward to. Browsing through book covers of newly published books for that one (or more) cover art that makes me stop in my tracks, and I get to share it with you guys. I enjoy reading opinions and your own favorites, so I encourage feedback!

So what covers drew my eye this month? (Click on book covers to be taken to their Goodreads.com page for more information)
 

Friday, January 19, 2018

Book Review - Dark Longing (Pure/Dark Ones Book 2), by Aja James


“Every story has more than one side, like a crystal that captures and reflects different colors of light. Do not take for granted what you think you know, for until you hold the entire jewel in your palm, the temptation is to fall prey to illusion and deception.”

This is a story of the Dark Ones…

Inanna: the vampire warrior

Known as the Angel of Death among her kind, she has lived millennia alone, one of the remaining True Bloods in existence, unconsciously longing for the one male she could never have.

Gabriel: the forbidden human

His soul recognizes hers from the first encounter. With the first touch, he is awakened. Though he does not know it, he has been searching for her across the ages.

But even as they are finally reunited, their love faces seemingly impossible odds. Will history repeat itself or will they break all the rules and chart a new course together?




Purchase links: Amazon

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Top Ten Tuesday


 

Good morning! And welcome to my very first Top Ten Tuesday post, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. 

Over the years I have enjoyed reading many of these TTT posts on other blogs and even contemplated starting them myself, but never made that leap until this year. 2018 is a year where I am gearing up to do a lot of embracing of new things, and decided why not? One new thing for the blog, and some new content and discussion. 

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This week's topic is about our bookish resolutions/goals for 2018. I am a big list maker and that is how I usually center myself when I am feeling overwhelmed. I make a list.  In terms of goals for my reading, I have made many, and took on some challenges this year to help me obtain them. There is no better sense of accomplishment when you cross out all the items on your list so hopefully I get to cross out each of these by the end of the year.

1. Finish my Netgalley backlog!! 
This is truly my #1 goal this year. I went a little nuts requesting books that I then could not keep up with. 2016 was, personally, a very difficult year for me, and I didn't do a lot of reading, and pretty much stopped blogging. Last year I tried really hard to catch up and had success, but this year, I think that I can definitely finish reading and providing feedback for everything I have left. I have already brought up my feedback ratio to 80% and it's only January 16th, so I think I am definitely on track!

2. Clean up my TBR!!
My 2nd major goal this year. I started out January with 1147 books in my TBR list... I will need 10-20 years (depending on how many books I can average) to get through all of these without adding.a.single.book to the list... and THAT will be downright impossible. Forget that! I need to go through my list of books and really evaluate which ones I am truly still interested in.

3. Read some of the older titles on my TBR
I incorporated a challenge around this goal, which also will help me with goal #2. (For details, click on my Challenges page). I don't always read ARCS, but I have been reading newer books, and those added to Goodreads back in 2012 and 2013 are gathering virtual dust. I need to get some of those books read.

4. Get through my physical books at home.
There is a pile of physical books that I have bought or received as gifts that have been gathering REAL dust in various corners of my house. Those need to get read! Then I will decide on whether to donate them, or maybe give them away to another reader so I can declutter them out. That is a 2018 goal too (declutter) but THAT is for another list. LOL

5. Read more YA/NA (Young Adult/New Adult).
These are my favorite genres and last year I didn't read much of it. I am starting on a new blog project soon centering around those genres and so I began to pick those up again. I have already read some amazing books that blew my mind and reminded me as to why I LOVE this genre so much.

6. Read more than last year.
Ok, this is a pretty hefty goal. I will tell you why. Last year I had a baby boy. I thought I would be able to read more. But once this kid learned to roll over, my reading moments were over. I have gotten pretty good at making time during his naps and before bed but barely made my goal of 50 books read in 2017. I kept the same goal for this year, but hope to read more. HOW? No clue. LOL but I start back at work next week and I will be commuting quite a bit, so I have accumulated a few audiobooks to get into on the drives which should help my number.

7. Write reviews before starting new books!
Oh my god. I am sooooo bad at this. I can go on a reading binge and 6 books later I force myself to sit down to write reviews, and details have been forgotten. I really have to break that habit, ASAP. 

8. Be more active on Social Media.
So this is not a personal social media thing. This goal is for this blog. I need to get more engaging on twitter and facebook and reach more of you readers, ask more questions, get some chatter going! When I do make some time for it during the week, I love it. I enjoy reaching out to readers on different forums, but have to make the time.  I also used to chat so much and developed relationships with readers on Goodreads and have become virtually non-existent there. I would like to reconnect with them again.

9. Get more involved with other bloggers.
Building a blogger community is so important, and satisfying. After all, you are connecting and supporting fellow readers/bloggers just like you. I have a few bloggers that I have continued over the years to comment and support, but I am not consistent. And I would like to find new bloggers whose content I can enjoy too, so I would like to do more of that this year.

10. Blog Scheduling
I got some good momentum on this blog last year and I need to keep working on making sure that I continue to provide regular content. Not just reviews, but more giveaways, if possible, and discussion posts to get us chatting more. Becoming very organized and scheduling my time as much as possible hopefully will help me get there.

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So clearly I have some pretty challenging goals this year but I hope that I will be able to accomplish many if not all of them.  What reading goals do YOU have for this year? How do you hope to accomplish them? Let me know if the comments! 

Happy reading!


Friday, January 12, 2018

Book Blitz & Giveaway - The Widow of Papina, by Katie Hamstead


Widow of Papina
Katie Hamstead
Published by: Soul Mate Publishing
Publication date: December 13th 2017
Genres: Mystery, New Adult, Romance

Forrest and Braydon Miller moved to the small town of Papina to follow their dreams and start a family. Braydon loves her new life in the quiet town, kept alive by the prestigious boarding school overlooking the valley. She is so proud of her husband’s work, helping the teens on the reservation.
Until one day, Forrest doesn’t come home.
Scandal spreads when it’s discovered that one of the teenagers is missing, too. But, Braydon refuses to believe her husband would leave her. When the teen is found, she isn’t talking—literally.
While Braydon’s heart is breaking, she must hold her crumbling life together, raise her son, trust in the sheriff’s loyal and ever-growing devotion, and find a way to love the mute teenager enough to discover the truth of what happened to her husband.



Author Bio:
Born and raised in Australia, Katie's early years of day dreaming in the "bush", and having her father tell her wild bedtime stories, inspired her passion for writing.

After graduating High School, she became a foreign exchange student where she met a young man who several years later she married. Now she lives in Arizona with her husband, daughter and their dog.

She has a diploma in travel and tourism which helps inspire her writing.

When her debut novel, Kiya: Hope of the Pharaoh, climbed into bestselling status, she believed she was onto something, and now has a slew of novels now available, and is published through Curiosity Quills Press, Soul Mate Publishing, and REUTS Publishing.

Katie loves to out sing her friends and family, play sports, and be a good wife and mother. She now works as an Acquisitions Editor to help support her family. She loves to write, and takes the few spare moments in her day to work on her novels.


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Thursday, January 11, 2018

Book Review - Medea, by Kerry Greenwood

Medea, Princess of Colchis, is a priestess of Hecate, Three Named, Lady of Phantoms. She is the custodian of the wood in which the Golden Fleece is hung. She alone can tame the giant serpent which guards the grove. And then Jason and his Argonauts come along, and she falls catastophically in love. She helps him steal the Golden Fleece ans sails with him to claim his throne. And that's when things go wrong... and she must attempt to reclaim her humanity through abandoment, murder, grief and heavy seas.

 









Purchase links: Amazon/Book Depository/Kobo



https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21807998-dragon-s-lair?from_search=true



'Medea' was an immense adventure! It has been a while since I picked up a lengthy book, and again this was an overdue novel to delve into. Such is the story of my reading life lately.

Really enjoyed Medea's character. She was a great contradiction from page to page. Strong but made weak by custom and her embittered teacher, and it was very clear that she had so much more potential and strength than she allowed herself. A consequence of the times she was born into. Yet she has power in her own rights, which becomes of great use to Jason and the Argonauts as they come to take the Golden Fleece. 

Jason and his Argonauts all have their own storylines running, and as much as one may think that it would be disjointed, the author was very good at connecting these characters in the book. As much as I was intrigued by Medea's storyline, I did not mind the interruption to explore Jason and his companion's, Nauplios, stories and how they got together with the Argonauts on their quest which then crosses paths with Medea. 

Filled to the brim with adventure quests, heroes and mysticism, it enthralled me from the very first chapter. It is violent, adventurous and incredibly sad as well, with many elements that would make one an epic story.  I am NOT familiar with the story of Medea in history, so I read this book for what it was worth, as a fictional story. And I thoroughly enjoyed it, and look forward to reading more by this author.



Happy Reading!
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Many thanks to Netgalley, Authors and Publishers for making copies available for review. No compensation was accepted and my opinions are 100% my own.



Author Bio:

Kerry Greenwood was born in the Melbourne suburb of Footscray and after wandering far and wide, she returned to live there. She has a degree in English and Law from Melbourne University and was admitted to the legal profession on the 1st April 1982, a day which she finds both soothing and significant.  Kerry Greenwood has worked as a folk singer, factory hand, director, producer, translator, costume-maker, cook and is currently a solicitor. When she is not writing, she works as a locum solicitor for the Victorian Legal Aid. She is also the unpaid curator of seven thousand books, three cats (Attila, Belladonna and Ashe) and a computer called Apple (which squeaks). She embroiders very well but cannot knit. She has flown planes and leapt out of them (with a parachute) in an attempt to cure her fear of heights (she is now terrified of jumping out of planes but can climb ladders without fear). She can detect second-hand bookshops from blocks away and is often found within them.

For fun Kerry reads science fiction/fantasy and detective stories. She is not married, has no children and lives with a registered wizard. When she is not doing any of the above she stares blankly out of the window.


Author Links: Website/Goodreads

Book Review - Never too far, By Abbi Glines

He had held a secret that destroyed her world.

Everything she had known was no longer true.

Blaire couldn’t stop loving him but she knew she could never forgive him.
Now, she was back home and learning to live again. Moving on with life… until something happened to send her world spinning once again.
What do you do when the one person you can never trust again is the one that you need to trust so desperately?

You lie, hide, avoid, and pray that your sins never find you out.








Purchase Links: Amazon/Book Depository/Kobo


https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17029526-never-too-far?ac=1&from_search=true


*There will be spoilers in this review*

The big secret's out. Blaire is through with Rush. She doesn’t want anything to do with her father, and Blaire is back in Alabama nursing her wounds. And then BAM... another bomb drops and the story starts to get interesting again!

I got so much more from the characters in this book , and not just Blaire and Rush. But you also get more details into almost all the other characters. I would have to say that Woods surprised me the most in this book. I felt like in the first book he was kind of trying to hit on Blaire way too much and always trying to stir the pot and create more drama between Blaire and Rush, but in this book he was quite the opposite, helping Blaire with anything she needed and truly being there when she needed a friend. I also loved how every few chapters it switched from Blaire’s view to Rush’s view. It made for a better read, being able to see what’s happening with each character. 

Blaire and Rush’s chemistry was hot. The sex scenes were just enough, not over the top or too detailed making it feel like your reading porn, but just enough that you feel their chemistry, love and passion for each other.
There are a lot of ups and downs in this book. Rush would do something, Blaire would run, and Rush would eventually chase after her. After a while I just wanted to slap them and get them on the same page.  But it made for a dramatic and intense read at certain points. Not only was there drama between Blaire & Rush but still the lingering drama between Blaire and her father, thankfully that was resolved when they had a heart to heart.


All in all, this book was really good. A lot of highs and lows, drama, and love made for an interesting read. This book gets a three star review from me. Not the best I’ve ever read but certainly not the worst either. I can’t wait to read the third book and see what happens with Blaire and Rush’s story.








Author Bio:


Abbi Glines is a #1 New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Rosemary Beach, Sea Breeze, Vincent Boys, Field Party and Existence series. She never cooks unless baking during the Christmas holiday counts. She believes in ghosts and has a habit of asking people if their house is haunted before she goes in it. She drinks afternoon tea because she wants to be British but alas she was born in Alabama. When asked how many books she has written she has to stop and count on her fingers. When she’s not locked away writing, she is reading, shopping (major shoe and purse addiction), sneaking off to the movies alone, and listening to the drama in her teenagers lives while making mental notes on the good stuff to use later. Don’t judge. 

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Book Review- Fallen too far, Abbi Glines

To want what you’re not supposed to have…

She is only nineteen.

She is his new stepfather’s daughter.

She is still naïve and innocent due to spending the last three years taking care of her sick mother.

But for twenty-four year old Rush Finlay, she is the only thing that has ever been off limits. His famous father’s guilt money, his mother’s desperation to win his love, and his charm are the three reasons he has never been told no.

Blaire Wynn left her small farmhouse in Alabama, after her mother passed away, to move in with her father and his new wife in their sprawling beach house along the Florida gulf coast. She isn’t prepared for the lifestyle change and she knows she’ll never fit into this world. Then there is her sexy stepbrother who her father leaves her with for the summer while he runs off to Paris with his wife. Rush is as spoiled as he is gorgeous. He is also getting under her skin. She knows he is anything but good for her and that he’ll never be faithful to anyone. He is jaded and has secrets Blaire knows she may never uncover but even knowing all of that…

Blaire just may have fallen too far.



Purchase links: Amazon/Book Depository/Kobo


https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16070903-fallen-too-far



I came across this book while trying to figure out the name of another book I wanted to read but had forgotten about. I still haven't figured out what book that was, but I'm so happy I found and read this book.

The writing style was really good, it never got confusing and it flowed really well. There were no spelling mistakes or bits and pieces that shouldn't have been there, just a nice solid storyline. In fact I read this book in one night, I just couldn't put it down! 

The sex scenes were very well written, they were not too detailed or raunchy. They were very sexy and well thought out. I really liked that the sex scenes didn't overpower the book; there were just a few throughout the book and then it was about the actual storyline.

The 'big secret" that was being kept from the main female character (Blaire) was really what kept me going, I just had to know what the secret was. I was a little mad that it seemed like everyone knew the secret but Blaire and not one person decided to tell her what was going on. I would be just as angry as she was in the end of this book.


Now speaking of the ending... I was left wanting to know more, A LOT more! I was disappointed at first, but then I realized there is a second, and even a third book to this series! I can't wait to start reading the others... watch out for those reviews soon! I didn't love this book but I definitely wanted to keep reading and find out what is happening. This book gets a 3 star review from me.




Author Bio:

Abbi Glines is a #1 New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Rosemary Beach, Sea Breeze, Vincent Boys, Field Party and Existence series. She never cooks unless baking during the Christmas holiday counts. She believes in ghosts and has a habit of asking people if their house is haunted before she goes in it. She drinks afternoon tea because she wants to be British but alas she was born in Alabama. When asked how many books she has written she has to stop and count on her fingers. When she’s not locked away writing, she is reading, shopping (major shoe and purse addiction), sneaking off to the movies alone, and listening to the drama in her teenagers lives while making mental notes on the good stuff to use later. Don’t judge. 


Monday, January 1, 2018

2017 in Review Part 2 - Challenge Updates!



Ahhhh 2017... You have been an interesting year!

Started out by relaunching our blog, and adding another blogger, Samantha, to the writing mix! I got to read some really cool books, interact with other bloggers and set some reading challenges. We even refreshed our blog with a new theme, thanks to our talented guest blogger, Erin!

So let's recap!


Challenges

This year I decided to take on only a couple of challenges besides my annual Goodreads reading challenge. Let's see how I did!





I had a little baby boy in January. I knew I wanted to read, and read A LOT during my mat leave, but it proved to be pretty hard when sleep deprivation kicked in almost immediately after he was born. But I still committed to read 50 books this year, which is a third of what I usually was able to do in years past. 

So how did I do this year?


:( Two books short.... I guess I could have grabbed a couple of short stories and pushed that number up, but I have a few novels lined up that are waiting for reviews and I have been trying to get through those books as soon as possible. So.... I was pretty close. Didn't beat my goal but I was pretty close. And considering how difficult it has been to balance a child, reading, writing and trying to keep the house somewhat organized, and the family fed, this was not a failure on my part.

I have set the same goal for 2018, and with the long commute to work, I should be able to meet this goal with the audiobooks I will be listening to on the way to work and back home.

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