Wednesday, October 31, 2012

It will give you a few chills.




Martin Gregory is in a hurry. He has arm loads of presents for his wife’s birthday. Martin just makes the train. The next morning Martin surprises his wife with a gift that she will not soon forget. Martin slaughters their dogs and leaves their corpses for his wife. Martin then leaves town.
Martin decides to seek help. It seems that the help Martin is receiving has opened the doors wide open. Martin is having a hard time trying to figure what exactly is real and just who he is.

The Watcher is a mind game of a read! It will have you wondering just how much is your mind playing tricks on you and what is real. This book is more a psychological thriller then it is a horror novel. So if you are in for the gore then you will be disappointed. However, there is one scene in the beginning that is pretty gory. After that, the story got darker and sucked you in. I could not stop reading as I wanted to figure out what was going to happen next.
Martin turned out to be a good narrator and voice for this book. I say this because in the beginning, I thought that Martin was going to be boring. So when Martin turned out to be a strong presence, I was mildly surprised and happy. This helped because it made me connect with Martin more and made reading this book go by quickly. From start to finish this book is a good read. I would suggest checking it out. It will give you a few chills.



Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Scottish Witch: The Chattan’s Curse


Review by Nancy
It’s Scotland in the 1630’s and Rose Macnachton has had her heart broken. Although she and Charles Chattan were handfasted (as good as married) he left her to marry an heiress in England. She could take no more and threw herself off of the parapet of the castle. Fenella, her mother, did not take this insult lightly – by Rose’s funeral pyre she cursed the Chattan men through eternity: When a Chattan male falls in love, he shall die. It’s that simple. Charles finally decided he loved his heiress and died.


In 1814 the family of Minnie, Portia and Lady Maclean had moved to Scotland to take their place. Unfortunately it was a poor place at best. Leaks, mice, little food, but Lady MacLean was determined to “show well” despite their money woes. Minnie is a goddess in love with a poor physician and Portia – well, Portia is bound to take care of her mother. Just ask mom, she’ll tell you. The rent is past due, the servant’s wages were lacking and it is all on Portia to fix it. Somehow.

With the uncovering of a very old, interesting book and the knowledge that a man named Harry Chattan is looking for a witch to save his brother, Portia decides to play act a bit. Just until she gets enough for the bills. But her little ruse stirs up much more. She isn’t a witch, doesn’t want to be one, she is a spinster who, for the first time in her life falls in love. With the man she is duping.

Well written book. The research done was interesting and the plot was great. A very imaginary tale of loves lost and loves won. But what about the curse? Does Portia find a way to break it? Read along and find out.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

A Memoir of Grief

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR JENNIFER WEINER RELEASES


HALLOWEEN-INSPIRED SHORT STORY E-BOOK: “A MEMOIR OF GRIEF (CONTINUED)”

October 28, 2012, New York, New York --- This fall, #1 New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Weiner is spooking readers with her latest work, an eerie tale entitled A Memoir of Grief (Continued) (Atria Books, ebook; $0.99), available for pre-order now on: Amazon.com, Apple iBooks, BarnesandNoble.com, and Simon & Schuster. A Memoir of Grief (Continued) continues in the now-annual tradition of Jennifer’s Halloween short stories, following last year’s bestselling Recalculating.

Artists have their appetites. This is what Ellie King would tell herself when discovering lacy panties in the backseat of her husband Gerry’s Cadillac, when Gerry was too self-involved to embrace their only son, or when he insisted on summers in the Hamptons and bespoke suits from London when, in fact, as critics pointed out, his once thriving writing career was past its prime, and they were buried in debt.

Yet, Ellie tried her best to portray the charmed, whimsical life she had dreamt of since her days as an English major at Wellesley College -- the kind of life a sophisticated literary couple should be leading: chauffeured soirees, nostalgic trips to Europe, cozy evenings filled with cups of strong black espresso. The skeletons that Gerry King harbored in his closet were known by only one other person: Ellie. And she wanted to keep it this way. She had given up everything for him.

However, when Gerry dies of cancer, he leaves something behind that would expose all of their dirty secrets; something that would jeopardize the mask that Ellie worked so hard to front. And when it gets into the wrong hands, Ellie is forced to do the unthinkable…

In A Memoir of Grief (Continued), Jennifer Weiner exposes a woman’s world of shattered dreams and raises an intriguing question: How far would you go to protect your pride?

Jennifer Weiner was voted #14 on Time magazine's list of "140 Best Twitter Feeds." Placing hers among the feeds that are “shaping the conversation,” the magazine celebrated her "must-read" live Bachelor tweets, noting that "rarely has there been such an ideal pairing of material and writer." This past summer, she live-tweeted "The Bachelor" for Entertainment Weekly's more than two million followers. She continues to write for the Huffington Post and on her own blog at www.jenniferweiner.com, which now has over 1.5 million visitors a month. She can also be found on Facebook, and, in real life, Philadelphia, where she lives with her family. She is currently working on a non-fiction collection of essays.

Excerpt


She’s never looked better,” Peter Schmidt said to his boy of the moment, from a corner of the kitchen.
Ellie was in the hallway, her little dog Duncan trotting briskly at her heels, two trash bags in her hands, filled with the leavings of her husband’s memorial party: empty tinfoil trays that had once held kugel and lasagna,
miniature bagels, whitefish salad, lox. She shouldn’t have been able to hear anything from the kitchen, but, after forty years in their apartment—my apartment, her mind amended; even with Gerald six weeks gone she found herself continually working to remember that the apartment on the Upper East Side, with its spacious living room that overlooked the park and its dingy kitchen that overlooked an air shaft, was her apartment now, or would be, for as long as she could afford it—she knew the acoustics well. There were corners of the living room where you could hear everything in the guest bedroom; from the master bathroom you could listen in on every word uttered in the front hall.

“Death becomes her?” That was Peter’s boy—or rather the boy Peter was chasing, a literary agent named Simms Downing, slim-hipped and graceful, his hair in a neat ponytail and his eyes dark as river-wet granite stones, all of twenty-seven to Peter’s sixty-two. People had known exactly what was going on after Peter, the editor of Paradigm Press, whose longtime companion of thirty years had died of a heart attack the year before—had started paying six-figure advances for every proposal the handsome young agent had brought him, including a collection of free-verse poetry and cocktail napkin doodles by the not-famous bass player in a once-famous band.

Ellie and Gerry had been friends with Peter and his husband Michael, an eternally cheerful middle school history teacher whose real job, like Ellie’s, was taking care of his brilliant, difficult husband. One morning a year after Michael had died, Ellie and Gerry were picking up Gerry’s usual bagels and a cake to serve after dinner, when she’d seen Peter and Simms at Sarabeth’s, huddled over maps of the fifth arrondissement, and she’d known, from the way Peter’s eyes followed Simms’s hands as they moved through the air, the way he devoured the sight of Simms lifting his coffee cup to his lips, that Peter was in love . . . and Simms wasn’t. He’s playing you, she’d wanted to whisper into Peter’s wrinkled, age-spotted ear, from which a tuft of hair white as St. Nick’s beard protruded . . . but would he listen? Did people in love ever listen? God knows she hadn’t when she’d fallen for Gerry, when she’d been a curvy, buxom senior at Wellesley, with a cloud of inky-black curls that she wore piled on top of her head. Gerry, who’d published an acclaimed short story collection and was putting the finishing touches on his novel, had come to teach a three-week semester in Cambridge, and Ellie was wild to be admitted, to sit at the great man’s feet.



Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Prophet: A Shepherd Thriller


Review by Nancy

Let me state right off that this is NOT a book for the squeamish. Frances Ackerman was taught by his father how to deal with pain. We won’t go into how but, trust me, it might not be what you’re thinking. He has killed and killed for several years and feels a closeness with Marcus Williams, agent of the Shepherd Group. You probably haven’t heard of this bunch – most haven’t and you really don’t want to because people like Ackerman are who they hunt down.


Ackerman seems to be taking a backseat at present to someone known as the Anarchist. The Anarchist burns his victims alive. Believing he is swallowing their souls. If his wife and kids only knew…..and that is the problem. The man who taught the Anarchist everything he knows, the Prophet; is waiting for the final three sacrifices. Guess who??

Marcus and his crew are doing their best to have it all end well but they are being blocked at every turn by the local cops. Why is there so much malice between them? Only one of them knows and he doesn’t want to share. The FBI also has a player in the game – Special Agent Vasques likes Marcus – a lot but wants to catch the killer more. Marcus and his fellow Shepherd Maggie have a history but it’s stalled right now.

What an excellent book! It scared me, made me mad, sad and more than a little paranoid. Ethan Cross has written a story that will captivate you until the last page. When the Prophet and the Anarchist meet and Ackerman decides to help Marcus catch them…..well, you’re gonna have to read it!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Blue Monday



Book Summary
Matt McAllister is the pastor of the fifth largest church in his state. He was a very public opponent of the lottery. When he accidentally purchases a ticket, he is stunned but his children are elated.His plan: throw the ticket away, protect his position as a minister and avoid wrestling with the very real temptation to take the money and run...even if the odds are millions to one. His children's plan: rescue the ticket from the trash, wait for the drawing and start deciding on cars, vacation homes, and travel destinations.


Long before the drawing takes place, Matt struggles to deal with the responsibilities and challenges of being a pastor, a father, and a husband as he deals with a long list of people and circumstances ranging from eclectic and funny, to frustrating and sad.

Matt begins each day determined to put the situation with the ticket behind him. The harder he works to deal with it, the bigger it gets. Every effort to avoid the potential damage the situation could cause makes it spin out of control even faster as new circumstances unfold.

Then the drawing takes place.

Suddenly, there's at least 186 million reasons, some hilarious, some tragic, that Matt's life, family, friends, and church will never be the same.


Review by Nancy

It’s bad enough that Matt McCallister was raised Methodist and became a Baptist minister. It’s bad enough that he is one of the main opponents of the Lottery system and had appeared on TV and In the papers speaking about its’ evils. It’s bad enough that Matt, in a hurry, accidently picks up a lottery ticket while getting gas, admits to his family he did it and pitches it in the trash.


THEN……his daughter and son retrieve it because you never know when you might be able to afford a Viper or a cruise someplace nifty. You never know……….when the ticket might be the ONE…..

This well thought out story was such fun to read! Through Matt’s stress, suffering over an unplanned outcome and his family’s reactions it was fun. The Church Board were appropriately stuffy and the well-monied convert was a hoot! If you like a tale that is just plain fun with a lot of thinking woven in, Blue Monday will be your cup of tea. What would you do,if you won 186 million dollars by mistake? Think about it!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Snuff Tag 9 should come with a warning….”This book is highly addictive”!


Nicholas “Nick” Colt is a private investigator. He has recently been contacted by Nathan Broadway. Nathan received a letter inviting him to participate in a real life video game version of Snuff Tag 9. The concept of the game is where 9 players are battling each other on a deserted island. The object of the game is to kill each other and be the last man standing.


Nick offers to check out the invitation for Nathan. The next thing Nick knows, he has just become the latest addition to Snuff Tag 9. Nick has no choice but to play the game when a surgical device is inserted into Nick that at any moment could kill him.

The concept of this book had me very intrigued. I picked it up to start reading and I had to make myself put it down. It was really that good. This book was not as gory as I was thinking it was going to be. It was more about the character and psychological aspect. This book did have the feel of the movie The Condemned combined with The Hunger Games.

I was cheering for Nick the whole time. He might have been considered the underdog but in this case, the good guy won. I thought about what I would do if I found myself in Nick’s situation and I would fight for my life. It is kill or be killed. To be honest the people that Nick did kill were annoying and needed to go anyways. The book ended on a high note. I now plan to go back and check out all of Mr. Hardin’s prior novels. Snuff Tag 9 should come with a warning….”This book is highly addictive”!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Viper Pilot soars the skies and is a thrilling read!

I am a fan of aviation and military history that is focused on aviation. Thus the reason that I wanted to check this book out. I found this book very informative and Mr. Hampton has a talent for story telling. Even though what he is sharing about are real life events. He makes the reader feel like they are viewing everything though his eyes. This is what I liked so much about this book.


Reading this book I did not feel like events or information was glossed over to hide. With other military type books, you get the sense that there are thing that the author can not share. I do understand due to confidentiality but at the same time, I do want to know up to the point that the author can not divulge certain information what the conditions were like that the author experienced. This is the reason I read these books. So again with this book, I felt like I got my money’s worth. For anyone who is not well versed in aviation terminology, you will still have a good time reading this book. Mr. Hampton explains things well and if you forget what an acronym stands for there is a nice glossary in the back of the book for reference. Viper Pilot soars the skies and is a thrilling read!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Ruins of Lace is a book to be treasured!





From a writer whose work has been called “unexpected, haunting, and powerful,” The Ruins of Lace by Iris Anthony (Sourcebooks Landmark; ON-SALE October 16; 9781402268038; $14.99 U.S.; Trade Paperback; Fiction) is an enthralling novel centered on the very real, mad French passion for forbidden Flemish bobbin lace in the 1600s.


The Ruins of Lace reveals the extreme desire for forbidden lace that pulled soldier and courtier alike into its web. It’s told by sharing the points of view of seven different characters. Some are strangers and will never meet, but they will all ultimately affect the outcome of each other’s lives.


My review

Katharina has spent her whole life making lace. It is the only thing she knows. Without it, she will be lost. This is why; Katharina can not let the nuns know that she is almost blind. Because if the nuns where to learns Katharina’s secret then Katharina would be thrown out on the streets.


Lisette is in love. Although, Lisette is about to learn the true cost of love. The Count is obsessed with lace. He wants it and will do anything in his powers to get it.

I have had a history with historical and historical romance novels. On one hand, I enjoy reading about the history of the story that I am reading and if done right the romance can help between the two characters however; on the other hand after a while, I grow bored of the history and details. I am happy to report that was not the case at all with this book. Instantly, I was attracted to the characters. They had heart, depth, and made you feel for them.

Each character had their own voice. It was intriguing to read how important lace was to each of them and how it affected them as well. While, I have never owned an exquisite piece of lace, after reading this book, I will not look at it again the same way. All the history, hours, and labor of love spent in making a piece of lace is amazing. The love story in this book is a tragic one. The Ruins of Lace is a book to be treasured!

 

v Lisette Lefort: When Lisette was seven years old, she ruined a priceless lace cuff that was owned by The Count of Montreau. It was a mistake that would haunt her family for many years.

v The Count of Montreau: Drowning in gambling debt, struggling with his desires towards men and the disappointment of his father, the Count will go to any lengths to make sure he gains his inheritance.


v Alexandre Lefort: His love for Lisette will drive him to travel across borders to find the coveted piece of lace that will ultimately free the love of his life.

v Katharina Martens: Katharina has lived in a convent for twenty-five years, where she was trained to make beautiful and highly coveted lace, and is considered the best. Now her eyesight has begun to fail, and it’s only a matter of how long she can hide it.

v Heilwich Martens: As Katharina’s older sister, she has been trying to pay for her sister’s release for years but keeps coming up short. How far will she go to earn the money she needs to save her sister?

v Denis Boulanger: Denis has been struggling as a border patrol officer and can’t seem to find any of the forbidden lace being smuggled into France. He has searched loaves of bread, coffins, and dogs… Will an accidental meeting with a stranger be the biggest break of his career?

v : Used to smuggle lace into France, dogs paid the biggest price. Le chien’s best friend was killed, and he’s caught between two masters—one loving and one terribly abusive. He longs for freedom from the “bad master,” but first must succeed in his most important mission yet.


Iris Anthony’s research brings us a stunningly fascinating novel about corruption, lies, and the true value of what it means to be human. Fortunes were ruined, estates destroyed, and women were driven blind before thirty by making the lace in near darkness. Importing foreign lace into France triggered a network of lace smuggling that thrived on hollow loaves of bread, coffins, and dogs. That such frippery could produce such consequences is tragic and mesmerizing.



Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Demoness of Waking Dreams


Luciana Rossetti is a demon. She made a deal with the devil that she would get to stay out of hell if she gave a human sacrifice every year. Luciana is also trouble. That is why ex-cop and new angel, Brandon Clarkson has vowed to stop Luciana. Once Brandon sees Luciana he is charmed by her beauty both in the day time and in his dreams.


The Demoness of Waking Dreams is the second of the Company of Angel books. This book can be read as a stand alone novel. I became a fan of Mrs. Chong's when I read her first book, Where Demons Fear to Tread. I have to say that I am enjoy reading this series. The first book drew me in and this book is seductive and leaves me wanting more.

The only reason that I rate this book a four is because I felt that most of the hotness took place during Brandon and Luciana's dream state and I wanted to see they together more. However, I did like that Brandon was the angel and Luciana the demon. Not to say that if the tables had been turned that I would not have minded Brandon being the bad guy. The way that he presented himself in this book as such a powerful force, it made me wonder if he could not be an archangel/demon. While the action did not come into play until the last half of the book, it made up for it by the chemisty with Brandon and Luciana. The action was mild at best. The ending leaves me hoping that Brandon will bump into Luciana again real soon.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

When a Heart Stops



Review by Nancy

In the sequel to her first “Deadly Reunions” book titled When The Smoke Clears , Lynette Easton continues the story of Alexia, Hunter and friends. This time, Serena Hopkins, the town medical Examiner, is up against a slew of murders that all have one link: she graduated with every victim. The killer is a copycat of a murderer years ago called the Doll-Maker Killer. It can’t be the original because he is still behind bars.


Serena and her once-crush from high school, FBI agent Dominic Allen (Alexia’s brother) make it their purpose to find this murderer and stop him. It’s too close to home to let it go – or to let anyone else handle the case.

In an interesting study of serial killers, groups of friends and how battered and abused children can turn out, Easton has done an excellent job of filling out the plot, bringing in surprise characters (Camille, the battered teen) and weaving it all together in a book that will keep you up until it’s done. I had absolutely NO clue as to the killer’s identity! I thought I did but I was wrong – which made it an even better read!


“Available October 2012  at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

Unclaimed Legacy + Book Contest






Review by Nancy


We left Abby, Merrideth and their friends trying to get Merri’s house, Colonel Miles’ house, to return in her computer program Beautiful House. But other chores loom ahead for the group as John’s cousin needs a housesitter just at the time Merri’s mom leaves for conference. As Lucy explains the care and feeding of her antiques and her dog the next-door neighbors pop over. Twins, Beulah and Eulah, one an old maid and one a widow. Grew up in Lucy’s house only to move next door when they got older.


Abby and Merri are trying their darnedest to convince John that they really were inside the program but he’s not buying it. He is totally infatuated with Abby, but can’t lean far enough to go for the inhabiting a computer tale. You can’t blame him. Beulah and Eulah know one of their relatives lived close but died in childbirth. They are trying to finish their family tree with no luck until…..the house across from the old Museum yields some very important information.

This is part two of the Time stories by Debbie Heal and our friends are back. John, the questioning law student; Abby the tutor and, of course Merri who is growing up a bit by now and learning that life may not be how you want it but you’ve got to deal with it anyway.

The things they find in the burned out home will shock them, enlighten them and make them understand why they were meant to be part of history in a much more intimate way. An excellent book! Read part one Time and Again first or lots of this won’t make much sense.

 

Author website

One lucky reader will win a copy of Time and Again: Charlotte of Miles Station. The first book.
Here is a description of it:


Abby expected to spend the summer in the dilapidated old house in Nowhereville getting to know her student Merrideth.

She didn't expect to get to know Charlotte Miles, the girl who had lived there 160 years before.

She planned to tutor Merrideth in math and English--not history. But that's before the freaky program on her new computer started waking her with its invitation to "take a virtual tour."

It turns out a lot of stuff happened in that old house. . .and most of it never made it into the history books.

Time and Again is a story told in the past and in the future. A story of three girls and their journey of self-discovery and faith.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Ghost Town is a good treat to give yourself this Halloween.

The TAPS gang…Amber, Drew and Trevor are visiting the town of Exeter. The town has the reputation of being a hot paranormal “it” town. The gang is attending a conference there. During the visit, the gang is brought on right away to investigate a case. A woman has been bludgeoned to death. As the gang investigates the case, they are met by an old friend or is he an enemy?


I am on the fence about this book. On one hand I liked the creep factor but on the other hand, I felt that the book was slow to get moving. There was a bunch of detail spent on the characters and explaining what everyone’s relationship was to each other.

Once the story got going about a third of the way into the book, then it did move fairly fast. The creep factor I was speaking of is what makes this book. Ok, it is not so much the scary but more the paranormal. The unexplainable that makes you go…WTF? There was a moment of that in this book. Then I got excited reading this book. Kind of like the stuff that the gang actually experiences on the television show. A plus that I did have about the details is that it helped me to imagine the Dark Lady and what the TAPS gang was facing. It was like I was a part of the team. Drew is the brains of the group. Ghost Town is a good treat to give yourself this Halloween.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The Victory Lab

I have to admit that I do not follow the elections that closely. However, I do try to educate myself on the primary candidates and what they stand for, so that I can make my vote really count. This is what intrigued me about this book. I know that all of the candidates use some sort of tactic to win over the voters but I don’t really pay attention to what type.


Mr. Issenberg really takes the time to break down all the different ways that the candidates and not just the current ones but all the past ones as well have used different tactics to win over the voters. Either by social media or by phone calls, door to door soliciting or television. In this book, Mr. Issenberg dissects politics through out the course of history. You will learn way more then you ever wanted to from this book. I admit that this book was so detailed that after a while, I found myself kind of skimming over the last half of the book. After reading this book, I will take away a better understanding of the game of politics. As you are pondering over with candidate to cast your vote for this election, there is one choice you don’t have to think too hard about and that is picking up a copy of The Victory Lab to read.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Adventures of Lily Lapp


I thought that this was a fun book. This book was more like a collection of short stories. Each chapter featured a different adventure that Lily had with her family and her life on the farm. Going from having a new baby brother, getting a cow and chickens, to running in the rain due to the buggy going into the ditch. Lily had such a simple way of looking at life. Aww to be a child again with such innocence.


I had such an enjoyable time reading this book. Lily really was the star of this book. However her family did come in a close second. I thought about it and tried to figure out which story I liked the best and I could not pick one. This is because I liked them all. Each one put a smile on my face. I can not wait to read about more adventures that Lily has in book two. The Adventures of Lily Lapp: Life with Lily is a joyride of fun for the whole family.

“Available October 2012  at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

Purchase a copy here

Rev It Up





Review by Nancy

Okay, I admit it – I’m hooked on the Black Knights, Inc. series. I read this book 2 days after I received it – IN JULY! It’s that good. OMG! In case you haven’t read Hell on Wheels you certainly don’t have to in order to read this one but it’s such a good story why not?


Black Knights, Inc. is much, much more that a motorcycle shop. It’s a covert mission headquarters for the baddest of the bad ex-SEALS and their missions. The fact that each has his own specially designed chopper is just an aside here. And, while the head dude “Boss” is wrapped up in trying to plan his wedding one of the lost brothers returns in the form of Jake Sommers. “The Snake” is as lethal as they come and has spent time away from the group trying to understand himself and get the killer mindset gone.

Because there at headquarters is Boss’ little sister, Michelle. Shell who married one of his best friends. Shell who became a widow shortly after. Shell who was on Preacher’s mind at the end when he whispered to Jake: “She’s pregnant.” And died.

Will she ever forgive Jake for treating her like dirt before she met Preacher? Will Jake be man enough to admit he was wrong four years ago? What’s up with Vanessa and the Cajun called Rock? What’s UP!!!??? Add in the fact that a Las Vegas gangster wants them all dead – and their familes as well and you have one heck of a homecoming for The Snake.

Julie Ann Walker is my new heroine! She writes such good characters, bitter, loving, mean as Hell, sexy as Heaven and what nice steamy scenes!

Purchase a copy here

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Deadly Coast...Go get this one – it was great!






Dugan knew it wouldn’t be easy. Dealing with pirates never was. However, in this story, that is the simple part. Pirating has become a profession of good wages and nowhere more than in Somali. This time the pirates have captured the U S Flagship Luther Hurd its crew and cargo. It’s the Captain’s first voyage, having been appointed because the exec officer was out with a nasty appendix. She isn’t happy with the boarding merchants in Port Said; she isn’t happy being in command and she really isn’t happy when pirates take over the ship.


To the pirates, it’s an old game - to the crew, not so much. Other group decides to attack a drilling ship who is bringing up lots and lots of bak-sheesh. Only the leader of the group knows there is more on the oceans floor and 60 year old silver: there are steel containers full of a virulent disease created by the Japanese in WWII. Dugan’s friend in the Alphabet World discovers the tale of the gas and radios to Dugan that stopping the terrorists is now top priority. And Dugan, along with his Russian pals, quickly hatches a plan.

This second book by McDermott is as good if not better than its predecessor Deadly Straits. The author, a veteran mariner, knows whereof he speaks and writes with authority. The characters are people I’d want coming after me if I were on a hijacked ship! Go get this one – it was great!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Sad Desk Salad is worth a look.

Alex works for Chick Habit, a gossip blog. Perk: Alex gets to work at home. Cons: Alex can never go anywhere without her laptop. Also the death threats are a major con. You have to take the good with the bad when you write for a gossip blog. Alex’s day starts with her waking up early, chatting with her boss where her boss gives her four topics to choose form to write about on the news for the morning and then the rest of the day involves Alex writing fluff pieces about random topics. This is when the most readers log on to read about the latest happenings involving their favorite celebrity or latest teen pregnancy. All the time while sitting at their desk eating their Sad Desk Salad.


Alex gets her big break when a prime story lands in her lap. Alex runs with the story. She causes a major uproar with the story.

Sad Desk Salad is a cheeky, chick lit read. This book is about reporting the news via the world wide web. Readers like you and me see these stories all the time when we get on the internet or check out gossip blogs for the latest news about news or celebrities. We don’t really get to see the behind the story look at how the writers gather information or the back lash they receive from publishing the stories. This is what this book is about, the behind the look. It is not pretty. You have to be thick skinned.

The characters while they can be annoying at times and snaky are entertaining. I do have to agree with Alex’s boss, Moira that Alex did need to grow some balls. She was a bit of a push over and had a soul. Not a bad thing to have a soul but it is a bad thing when you are writing for a gossip blog. As Alex learned just how quickly people can turn on you when you do an expose. After a while of reading this book, I did jump ahead some to where the meaty part of the story really picked up. Sad Desk Salad is worth a look.

New Kids on the Block: Five Brothers and a Million Sisters





New Kids on the Block: Five Brothers and a Million Sisters. Ok, so be warned my geeky side is coming out. I can remember when New Kids on the Block starting getting popular and their songs were on the radio. My girlfriends and I would listen to them all the time. Of course we had our favorites of the five guys. Mine was Jordan. Anyone who is a true fan of NKOTB will tell you their favorite guy and usually you will be surprised to find out that as we all grow up, our guy does not change. I even had a NKOTB lunch box.


What I was surprised to learn from reading this book was just how loyal and friendly NKOTB are towards their fans. The feel is mutual. I had just as much fun reading how the guys went from singing in prisons, birthday parties, to Fenway Park. As I did reading about the stories from real fans. Who had their own stories to share about meeting the guys. I have come away with more respect for the band after reading this book. This book did not just focus on the music but the guys and who there are and where they came from. I would suggest checking this book out for any NKOTB fan. You will not be disappointed.


Monday, October 1, 2012

Blind Spot




Roz has macular degeneration. A condition that results in the loss of vision in the center of the eye. This usually makes it hard for the person to see very well. In fact Roz is considered “legally blind” by the DMV. With this condition, Roz can come off as being snobbish as she does not make eye contact with anyone. Roz just wants to be normal. That is hard to do with you are stuck taking “Life Skills” class. A class for people with disabilities to learn how to interact with others. One plus about being stuck in the class is the student aide. His name is Jonathan. Also known as “Zeus” for his good looks.


Roz is paired up with Tricia in her Life Skills class. Tricia is into drugs. So that is why when Tricia goes missing after homecoming Roz thinks nothing about her disappearance. That is until she hears the report on the radio about Tricia’s body being found in the river. Now Roz is trying to piece together all of the events leading up to Tricia’s disappearance.

Blind Spot is the first novel by new author, Laura Ellen. I thought it was a good first book but there is room for improvement. For example, I thought that Roz was going to have more special abilities with her macular degeneration. Instead I got a pretty good story, characters that at times were like mean girls, and an ending that made me go…WTF! That was it?

I mean there was no real surprise as to who was the responsibility party in the disappearance of Tricia but I was expecting more in the end. Roz was fine but very gullible. After a while I only tolerated her. Overall though, I did finish this book as there was promise and I wanted to know how the ending would go. Hopefully the next book by Mrs. Ellen will be better. I will keep an eye on this author and try her again.

Time and Again: Charlotte of Miles Station





Review by Nancy

When Abby got out of college with a teaching degree; the world was open to great possibilities. However, there was the summer to consider first and she had accepted a tutoring job in Miles Station, Illinois. Or what was left of it. Which wasn’t much.


The mother was a nice lady named Pat and then there was the child she had been hired to tutor – Merrideth. Heavy on the deth part. Merri was a very unhappy eleven-yr old who had just survived an unpleasant divorce and had been torn away from her only hero – dad. Determined to make her mother and all around her as unhappy as she was, Merri didn’t do anything. She didn’t wash her hair, she didn’t bathe and the one thing she excelled at was eating Kit Kats.

With a heart-felt sign and a prayed Abby begins. In a burst of guilt, Dad bought Merri a new computer and cell phone. The computer has all the games on it you can imagine, including one called Beautiful House. Beautiful House shows all sorts of lovely mansions from the area – including the “fixer-upper” Pam had purchased. One kick – it also shows the people who lived there and, if you click the right key you can go into their time and mingle unnoticed!

Using this as a tool, Abby teaches Merri math, reading, history and a myriad of other things. However, when the program stops and she calls Customer Support – nada.

The characters in this book were well done. Merri could have been either of my girls at that age; abby the well-meaning Christian tutor and Pam, the harried, overworked and underpaid mom who’s trying her best. The way Merri and Abby meld together was great and I want the program!

Purchase a copy here

A Private History of Happiness: Ninety-Nine Moments of Joy from Around the World

I thought that A Private History of Happiness: Ninety-Nine Moments of Joy from Around the World was a nice compilation of short stories or moments in time of happy events that happened to people.


When I say the stories are short, I mean it. They are like a page and a half. Although, the stories do not have to be very long in order to get the message. While, I did not read all of the stories, the ones that I read were good. Some better then others. Of course, how can you judge happiness? As this collection shows for each person happiness means something different for some it is riding a horse, for others…discovering a new place, remembering a moment with good friends, etc.

Like I said prior, some stories just interested me more then others but still a good collection and worth giving a second glance at. You just might find your own happiness.

Savage Hunger

Review by Nancy

When you’re in the Army and are captured by the bad guys, even if you knew it was going to happen, the last thing you expect to see is a jaguar in their camp. The next to the last thing you expect to see is a guy who isn’t Army untying you and helping you lie down. Then your above- you-in-grade fiancĂ© shows up and could care less about how YOU feel – he’s just pissed he didn’t get to catch the bad guys. He doesn’t even really care that you are the sole survivor of the plan.


A year later when you go back to the jungle to relive your PTSD issues, minus one fiancĂ© and plus one very well researched map the last thing you expect is that the same jaguar will show up. The next to the last thing is that he doesn’t try to eat you.

This is the beginning of a fast-paced tale of shapeshifters, love, drug lords and South America that will leave the light one until you’re done reading it. A paranormal romance with a great plot and plenty of baddies to beat! Terry Spear, who usually writes about wolves has done an excellent job changing species and the story of Kat, Maya and Connor will be well worth your effort. It’s out in October. Go enjoy!