Wednesday, December 31, 2008
2. Did you keep your new year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year? No resolutions.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth? Not that I remember.
4. Did anyone close to you die? Yes. My father-in-law. I miss you, Jay.
5. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008? More time with family.
6. What date from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why? Nothing comes to mind.
7. What was your biggest achievement of the year? Signing two publishing contracts and seeing my book in print.
8. What was your biggest failure? Not finishing McKnight.
9. What was the best thing you bought? Furniture.
10. Whose behaviour merited celebration? A friend of my daughter's.
11. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed? My daughter.
12. Where did most of your money go? Furniture. lol
13. What did you get really, really excited about? Meeting Sam and Jeremy.
14. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? much happier. This time last year, we were at the hospital quite a lot.
ii. thinner or fatter? Thinner! Woohoo. 15 pounds lighter.
iii. richer or poorer? who knows.
15. What do you wish you'd done more of? Spent time with family.
16. What do you wish you'd done less of? Spent time on pointless issues.
17. Did you fall in love in 2008? No.
18. Did your heart break in 2008? Yes.
19. What was your favourite TV program? Project Runway.
20. What kept you sane? I retained that?!
21. What political issue stirred you the most? I detest politics but probably, people's interaction concerning the US Presidential campaign and election.
22. Who was the best new person you met? Sam and Jeremy
23. Favorite book you read? Thr3e
24. Favorite movie? 27 Dresses
25. What are your plans for 2009? Continue to write, attend at least one wedding, travel more.
What about you??
Monday, December 22, 2008
Saturday, December 20, 2008
You Are Cider
Your holiday personality is cozy.
The holidays are your favorite time to stay home, stay warm, and spend time with those you love.
You don't need a lot to make you happy over the holidays.
Seeing an old relative or favorite holiday film is enough to make your day.
Friday, December 19, 2008
This morning, I emailed my editor. God love her, she is fantastic. I expressed my concerns about a couple of chapters. She agreed that it would be best to 'off' them. I remember writing those chapters. There is some good work in there. But, it has to be done.
She worked her magic to pull BBH from galleys and I set to work on the unthinkable. Two, large chapters are now gone and to be honest, it's for the best. *whimper* Yeah, it's for the best.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Monday, December 1, 2008
Insert your own answers and pass it on to whomever you feel would respond – including the person who sent it to you
1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper
2. Real tree or Artificial? Usually it’s real but this year, fake.
3. When do you put up the tree? First Sat. in December, but I got an early start this year.
4. When do you take the tree down? – The Sat. after Christmas.
5. What do you do with your tree after you take it down: To the curb! Where it goes from there, I have no idea.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? An Etch-a-sketch.
7. Hardest person to buy for? My husband. He always wants something that is never going to happen.
8. Easiest person to buy for? My daughter. We go shopping, she picks out what she wants. There ya go. Done and everyone is happy.
9. Do you have a nativity scene? I used to.
10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Cards
11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? There's no need to bring this up again.
12. Favorite Christmas Movie? It's a Wonderful Life and Miracle on 34th St.
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Right after Thanksgiving.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Is it wrong when the person really wanted it and I didn't?
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Cookies
16. Lights on the tree? Love, love, love lights.
17. Favorite Christmas song? O Holy Night
18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? I would love to stay home but on Christmas Eve and ending late on Christmas Day, we start our trek around the state.
19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? Sadly, yes.
20. Angel on the tree top or a star? This was a yearly disagreement when my children were home. The girl's liked the angel, the guys liked the star. We did agree to alternate. The trouble came when deciding what topped the tree the previous year.
21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Yes. LOL
22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Christmas carols.
23. Favorite ornament theme or color? No real theme. I try to add an ornament every year. Something representative of the preceding year.
24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? A repeat of Thanksgiving dinner.
25. What do you want for Christmas this year? a d-i-l. Oh, I thought that said, what do you expect this Christmas. ;)
Merry Christmas To Everyone
You Are 81% Likely to Survive Another Great Depression
You have been saving for a rainy day... or a rainy few years.
While most people may not have as grim of an outlook as you, they're also not as prepared as you.
If society collapses, you'll have plenty of food and resources for you and your loved ones.
And plenty of ammo for anyone who wants to steal from your stockpile!
Sunday, November 30, 2008
What Holiday Food Are You?
Friday, November 28, 2008
Books are the most versatile gift. They can be the main gift, used as wrapping accessory, or as stocking stuffers. They are meaningful, sentimental, humorous, or informative. Everything and anything you want can be found in one little building, or better yet, online. And, no batteries needed.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
What are some things that have happened in the past year that you are thankful for?
We wondered if it would happen but in January, my son became engaged to a wonderful girl. Wedding news to follow.
She had my nerves on end, but my daughter managed to live in Mexico for an entire month and not end up attached to an I.V. drip. Don't ask. She came close.
Greg and I have managed to remodel in harmony. A collective sigh was felt throughout cyberspace.
And much to my eighth grade English teacher's surprise, I became a published author.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
This was a really odd experience. I expected each book to be as good as the first. Oddly, these were not the author's debut books, nor her latest releases. In this last book, I kept hoping for the story to come together but it kept sputtering with weak attempts. I'm aware that this author changed genres. From what I have read of her work, I get the impression it was during these books that she gave her career change serious contemplation.
Oh well, off to find a new favorite.
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Monday, October 6, 2008
Bottom line...give Moning a try but not with this book.
Monday, September 29, 2008
I was in the mood for something light, fun, and quick to read. HIGHLAND KNIGHT was just that. All of the characters were likable. The plot was predictable but in this kind of story, who cares? Deep and immersing isn't why I read it. As I neared the end, I thought Ms Miles may have painted herself into a corner with the ending. Not at all. She brings about a thoroughly satisfying conclusion that left me feeling warm and fuzzy.
I'm glad to see this author has other books at the ready because when I'm in the mood for a light-hearted escape, I will reach for a book by this author.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Just the stone cold truth
of our great friendship.
1.When you are sad,
I will jump on the person
who made you sad
like a spider monkey
jacked up on Mountain Dew!!!
2. When you are blue,
I will try to dislodge
whatever is choking you.
3. When you smile,
I will know you are
that I must be involved in.
4. When you're scared,
we will high tail it out of here.
5. When you are worried,
I will tell you horrible stories about how much worse
it could be until you
quit whining, ya big baby!!!!
6. When you are confused,
I will use little words.
7. When you are sick,
Stay away from me
until you are well again.
I don't want whatever you have.
8. When you fall,
I'll pick you up
and dust you off--
After I laugh my rear off!!
9. This is my oath...
I pledge it to the end.
'Why?' you may ask;
-- because you are my FRIEND!
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Friday, September 5, 2008
Thursday, September 4, 2008
I was nominated for this award by a great friend and talented author, Anita Davison
Part of the obligation of this award is, in turn, nominating a few sites that I admire and enjoy reading too, so mine are as follows
These five ladies have great stuff on their blogs which range from personal insights as authors and editors and snippets they find worth passing on to others in this strange yet rewarding world we call writing! They have great websites too so all are worth a visit.
Now my nominees get to post this same award to their blog and nominate up to seven others. Please link back to me at my blog for nominating you. As Anita said on her nomination, I was honoured to receive this and hope you will be too.
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Saturday, August 30, 2008
Ms Chase does a fabulous job of weaving her characters together in a story that will keep you glued to the pages. I rooted for Gray and Nora from the minute they entered the scene and held my breath until the end. The secondary characters enrich the story and will keep you offset as to who did the deed. Equally important is how and why it was done. I worried that I would get to the end and it would be an easy finish. Not so. The conclusion was very satisfying.
I am not a fan of paranormal books, but I do enjoy a good ghost story. In the tradition of JANE EYRE, DARK OBSESSION will satisfy lovers of Gothic novels. This book is a must read.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
My husband mentioned our upcoming vacation and my first thought was, *rubbing hands together* I can't wait for all of that time to write while in the car. Is that a bad thing? lol
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Sunday, August 24, 2008
As is the case with most Americans, I am a conglomeration of a variety of nationalites. German, French, and American Indian (Cherokee, to be exact), but my heart is Irish.
In my youth, I would listen for hours as my grandmother told the story of her grandmother leaving her homeland. I especially loved to hear her mimic the accent. I don't know that I would have enjoyed meeting Grandma Nora, she seemed like a hard as nails woman. I guess she would have to be to take on the challenges she faced.
It was very nice to see a part of home attached to my blog.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
To get back in the McKnight frame of mind, I'm reading over a few scenes leading up to the point where I left off, reviewing my plans for the next few chapters, and familiarizing myself with the main character's appearances. I'll get there.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
I'm presently at 16k, which is a nice place to be at this point. I prefer to write light on the first draft. I find it easier to add words, layers, etc. than remove them. Plus, it's depressing to hit delete on so much work. :)
So, I'll let the anthology rest, go back to work on McKnight, and wait for edits on Bound by Honor.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
This is my first experience with Heather Graham's writing and I loved her book. Her writing style is easy to follow, she paints the scene with a skilled hand, and her characters are fantastic. She also weaves subplots and red herrings throughout her story that will keep you guessing until the end.
Although it took me a while to keep all of the characters straight, I was drawn in immediately to the story and found it difficult to stop turning the pages. THE PRESENCE has made me a fan of Ms Graham's work, and I will look for more of her books.
Friday, August 8, 2008
The characters in this book are very real and and easy to relate to. Jake struggles with a future that he sees only as grim while Maddie tries to get him to see her as something more than his best friend's kid sister. Just when she is ready to give up on him, both of their mothers step in for a few coincidental meetings. God bless meddling moms.
This book is filled with faith-encouraging scenes that aren't at all preachy. The characters handle adversity with very human responses while relying on Godly wisdom and intervention. AT HIS COMMAND is a must read for anyone who has hungered for an opportunity to peek into other people's lives and see how it is possible to rally when your plans are shattered.
AT HIS COMMAND will be available in stores Aug. 26 but can be ordered now from Amazon.com Please visit Brenda's blog, No rules. Just write.
Saturday, August 2, 2008
I have to tell you, I loved this book. Yes, there are a few bumps but nothing unforgivable. The characters were likable, fun, and real. When I read the back cover and saw two love interests, I knew whose side I was on. Umm, no. Tom won me over. I loved that he didn't spend all of his time not believing her story. And his little test to see if she had traveled, this is a guy you want to have around.
The idea that an author ends up in her own unwritten story was a great hook, and I wished this could have been expanded on a little more. With that said, the book did not lack plot.
Can we talk cover art for a minute? I am not a fan of typical romance covers, but I like this one. I think it is because the artist got it right. The cover depicts the story. Even the shoe's details are there.
This is not a by-the-book romance or time travel story. YES! (Sorry. Reviewer commentary.) I enjoy both of these genres, but this book had me turning the page because I didn't know what to expect next. My fingers so itched to flip to the last few pages before I was finished. I resisted. :)
TUMBLING THROUGH TIME is a definite keeper and Gwyn Cready is an 'auto-buy' author.
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Ms McCarty does a wonderful job bringing these characters to life. Meg and Alex are both strong, very likable, but not over powering.
I did feel there were times when the story bogged down with details and I rolled my eyes at a few phrases. But, the author did stay focused on the plot and kept the action moving.
This is my first read of this author and I have already scribbled a note to myself listing the title of her next book to go in my tbr pile.
Sunday, July 27, 2008
You know how the unknown is spooky and gets creepier because of our imaginations adding to the mystery? I have a feeling this is what happens with the 'getting published' process.
We have these Oz-like characters (publishers) who no one ever sees but everyone is in awe of. To get to the great Oz, we have to get past the gatekeepers (agents) who are the only ones who have access to his chambers. If that isn't enough, the gatekeepers have these little minions (interns), who are delusionally self-empowered to make life and death decisions concerning little Toto (your ms).
Dorothy (the writer) is frantic. The Tinman, Scarecrow, and Lion (fellow writers) are comforting, but all Dorothy really wants is a home for little Toto.
"No!" they cry. Saliva drips from the fangs of the evil minions.
"Please, if I may have a moment of your time," Dorothy begs.
"There, there," her friends comfort, "you can stay with us in our world (forums and boards)."
"But you don't understand. They don't understand. Oz will understand. He has helped so many who were more pathetic than I. I know he will hear my plea, if only I can approach."
Dorothy awakens, surrounded by familiar faces, and clutched in her hand is a hardbound book with Toto's cheerful face adorning the cover.
The point of the story, everything seems unattainable with numerous stumbling blocks. We know where the finish line is but are constantly being shoved to the side of the path. It's scary to keep picking yourself up and continuing on an unfamiliar road, knowing you will face an even greater unknown. But we do it nonetheless. Don't be afraid of the unknown, be afraid of not getting back up.
Saturday, July 19, 2008
Hmm, I really need to come up with a name for this. Any suggestions?
Friday, July 18, 2008
It will be interesting to say the least. I have to keep the entire story under 25k. I can do this...I can do this. As long I eliminate subplots and secondary characters, this shouldn't be a problem. And you know how I love my secondary characters.
I am so excited. I pulled together a very rough outline this morning. Yeah, I made an outline! I don't see any major problems other than putting McKnight on hold. The anthology comes with a deadline, he'll have to understand. It will be intersting to see what mayhem Cole and Isa wreck while I'm gone.
Off to lower the air conditioner to get in a cold frame of mind.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Saturday, July 12, 2008
Murderers are hanged. This realization swept over Isabella Foster in a cold sweat. She rubbed her throat where phantom knots laced her neck like a string of pearls. It was reassuringly smooth. She swallowed and wondered if stealing a horse could also send her to the gallows but then, it was her horse. Of course, she hadn’t committed murder either, but that hadn’t stopped Eli Banks, her dead uncle’s business associate, from trying to wrap a noose around her gullet.
Friday, July 11, 2008
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Have you ever read a book where, for no reason whatsoever, everyone loved it, but you? That is what happened with this book and why I take the blame. The cover blurb was intriguing, the author's writing style was easy to follow, and the characters were clearly written. All of the elements were there, but no spark. There was also no reason to dislike it.
You know, sometimes, it has nothing to do with good or bad, it just happens. In fairness to the author, I would like to give this book another read to see if I see it differently at a later date.
Friday, July 4, 2008
Thursday, July 3, 2008
I'm slightly torn on this book. Ms Wolff's writing style leans toward literary. If you prefer books that are filled with narrative and details, you will love this book. If you are looking for a light romp through Scotland, this book isn't for you.
The book begins with many pages of backstory. Because of the author's overuse of narrative and detailed description, I felt like I was sorting through wrappings in search of the story.
Lily is introduced to another time traveler in the castle. I expected her to spend a lot of time with him, comparing notes, in search of a way to return home. There isn't even a small amount of curiosity, which I found odd because I thought she had a science background.
I never warmed up to any of the characters and when Lily and Ewan professed feelings for each other, I was shocked.
Overall, I was determined to finish, and did, but with a headache.
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
As a disclaimer, I'd like to point out that this was an actual person and the first half of his story is true. When it was time for him to depart, I felt he had so much left to offer my story. What else could I do? I promoted him, gave him an impressive rank, and led him down a fictional road. I do not mean to sully the man's name. Anything concerning Thomas Preston after the trial is purely my imagination.
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
1. What’s in your pocket right now? Nothing
2. Have you ever gone skinny-dipping? Ummm. Next question.
3. Did you have a baby blanket? No.
4. Have you ever tried to cut your own hair? I trim my bangs.
5. How did that turn out? Fine.
6. Have you ever sleepwalked? Nope.
7. Have you ever had a birthday party at a restaurant? No.
8. Have you ever eaten a dog biscuit? No.
9. If you were in a car sinking in a lake, what would you do first? Wrap a plastic bag around my laptop then open the window.
10. Have you ever ridden in an ambulance? No.
11. Have you ever fallen asleep in school? No.
12. How many foreign countries have you visited? None, but I really think some states should qualify.
13. Have you ever broken a bone? Cracked one.
14. Have you ever accidentally taken something from a hotel? No.
15. If you could invite any movie star to your home for dinner, who would it be? How about a producer instead, let's keep our priorites, shall we?
16. If you could attend an Olympic Event, what would it be? Diving.
17. How many pairs of shoes do you own? Not nearly as many as my daughter.
18. If you won a $5,000 shopping spree to any store, which store would you pick? Black and White.
19. Have you ever been rushed to the emergency room? No.
20. Have you ever had surgery? Yes.
21. When was the last time you had a sit-down dinner with your immediate family that didn't consist of a television? It's been a while, mainly because we are rarely together at meal time.
Monday, June 30, 2008
The title and the book blurb really intrigued me (I could do without the cover art), but I found the story dealt more with the events that led up to THE THREE NIGHTS OF SIN opposed to the nights themselves. Although not what I had bargained for, the book still held its own. There were a few places of description that wobbled, but nothing that was irritating.
Ms Mallory's writing style is very clean and enjoyable. Her characters are fantastic, and I loved the way they were evenly matched. I rooted for them from page one.
Her plotting is good and easy to follow except for a few 'did I miss something' moments. This was easily forgiven when a major hook, about three fourths into the story, had me turning the pages before I finished the last words. I had to see how this was going to be handled and I was on pins and needles hoping the characters would make me proud.
Overall, I think this author has a lot to offer and will improve with each book she writes.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Saturday, June 28, 2008
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Monday, June 23, 2008
I realize this is not the first book in the series, but I was lost for a good section of the book. The author did continue to reference the backstory, but this proved more annoying than helpful. I did at least grasp the concept of the story.
Allie knows her calling in life, almost too well, and is portrayed with a solid strength. She was likable until she and Royce were reunited. At this point, she came across as overbearing and whiny, which resulted in him appearing wimpy. Royce doesn't know what to think of this woman who keeps insisting that she is in love with him. He is sworn to a code and does try to keep her safe, even when she does everything to encourage 'evil' to find her.
The plot is filled with undeveloped, secondary characters with storylines that lacked continuity and believability. The scenes with the queen and Royce only served to undermine his character and distanced Allie from me as a reader.
There were glimmers of hope, but these all fizzled. I really wanted, and tried, to like this book. I love time travel stories. This one, even with all of its false starts, never came across.
HAUNTING RACHEL by Kay Hooper
EVERY MOVE YOU MAKE by Carla Cassidy
The following two, I'm not sure about. I asked the customer service lady to recommend something in the lines of Evanovich...we'll see how they compare. They do look fun.
PEACH COBBLER MURDER by Joanne Fluke
MURDER GETS A LIFE by Anne George
I think I need to let my credit card breathe for a while. The poor thing is plum tuckered out not to mention, my tbr pile is gaining on my read pile. I do enjoy how they look on the bookshelf though.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
On another note...I got a nice surprise today--a B&N gift certificate. So, I spent the day browsing for new authors. This is what I found:
THE MASQUE OF THE BLACK TULIP by Lauren Willig
A TOUCH OF MINX by Suzanne Enoch
I'M WATCHING YOU by Karen Rose
PARLOR GAMES by Jess Michaels, Julia Templeton, and Leda Swann
DANGEROUS TO KNOW by Mary Jo Putney
What a nice way to end the day!
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Last night I was up very late trying to put out an emotional fire. Maybe that has something to do with my slump. I hope that's all it is.
Okay...game plan...big breath, clear head, go read for a while, maybe I need a few hours to relax. Yeah, that should help, maybe a mini nap, too. Shhh, quiet.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
The Wild Rose Press wants you to have a SONY eReader!
All this summer (June 11 – August 31), every time you purchase a title by any of these sponsoring authors (see list below), you will be eligible to enter our drawing to win a SONY eReader. The drawing will be held on Tuesday evening, September 2, 2008 at our weekly chat (9:00 p.m. eastern). (You do not need to be present in the chat room to win).
You may enter as many times this summer as you wish. If you purchase more than one title in the same order, feel free to send two emails and include the order twice. We will verify that you did indeed purchase more than one title.
The following are the sponsoring authors for this wonderful contest. Please look for their author information on our web site and enjoy some fabulous reads this summer from these participating authors:
Donna L. Bolk
Anna Kathryn Lanier
Sandy Wichersham McWhorter
Stacey Joy Netzel
Cindy Spencer Pape
Donna Marie Rogers
Carol A. Spradling (make sure you go to Jen's blog for a second contest!)
Debra St. John
For information about the Sony eReader click here
For questions on this contest, please contact LisaDawn MacDonald at firstname.lastname@example.org, Martha K at Martha@thewildrosepress.com, or Rhonda Penders at email@example.com. Please put the words SONY eReader contest question in your subject line.
*No purchase necessary to win the SONY eReader. If you do not purchase a title, you may enter the contest by mailing a post card to The Wild Rose Press, Sony eReader Contest, P.O. Box 708, Adams Basin, NY 14410. Please include your name, email and contact information. In addition, you must write down three titles from any of the participating authors. Postcard entrants will be added to the names of email entrants and a winning entry will be drawn on September 2, 2008.
Friday, June 13, 2008
I did manage to pick up two new authors and one author who I promised a second chance. I think I have enough to get me through the summer. So, if you can think of anything I may have overlooked, let me know what it is. I'm always on the lookout for new authors.
Had I read an honest review prior to purchase, I would have avoided this book. That doesn't mean I would have avoided this author, but I would have been more selective of her work.
I do not feel any malice toward the author or publishing house and will probably look through her work to see if I can find the book that made her a best selling author.
While it is important to keep everything in perspective as to what one categorizes as good or bad, we need to have the means in which to base that decision. It is my experience that a variety of opinions is the best way to make that conclusion.
Thursday, June 12, 2008
You're To Kill a Mockingbird!
by Harper Lee
Perceived as a revolutionary and groundbreaking person, you have
changed the minds of many people. While questioning the authority around you, you've
also taken a significant amount of flack. But you've had the admirable guts to
persevere. There's a weird guy in the neighborhood using dubious means to protect you,
but you're pretty sure it's worth it in the end. In the end, it remains unclear to you
whether finches and mockingbirds get along in real life.
Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Let me start by saying, if you have any preconceived ideas of historicals, romance novels, predictable titles, you are dead wrong with this book.
Ms McKerrigan does a brilliant job with the characters in this book. More than equally matched, Nicholas and Desiree are a wonderful complement to each other. One thing that I loved is that the characters were thinkers. The author doesn't resort to standard solutions to solve their problems. Very refreshing. I never knew what was going to happen next.
There were believability issues with a few details toward the end, but it wasn't enough to spoil my feeling for the book.
I loved the point of view approach Ms McKerrigan used in this book. By using this method, I felt like I knew each character's thoughts and emotion without feeling the de-je-vue of a repeated scene. And it was all done without head hopping.
The pace of this book...my my my. Top dead center! Whenever a story slows down, I skim to the dialogue until the action picks back up. Not here. I read all of it. Although there is action throughout the book, during the quieter scenes, they were so well done, I wanted them to continue forever.
This was an excellent read and an author to look for.
Saturday, June 7, 2008
Paula Quinn does a wonderful job of bringing the MacGregor saga to life. The characters are real and personable. I got a feel for who they were and rooted for their success. The MacGregor story is one I would love to know more about.
Her writing style and plotting keeps the pages turning with minor characters that make you smile. I loved the scene where poor Jamie is taught a lesson by the more worldly Brodie and Angus. Perhaps the castle should have thicker walls.
The one thing that stood out to me was a slight heaviness throughout the book. This hindered the emotion that Ms Quinn was trying to establish. I never warmed up to Kate's brother, Robert or despised Duncan as much as I should have.
Overall, Ms Quinn is a very good storyteller and from what I can tell, she is an author that will get better with each book.
Friday, June 6, 2008
Thursday, June 5, 2008
After much thought, I'm still trying to decide what my thoughts are concerning this book. When I saw the cover and read the blurb, I expected a lighthearted read with comical moments. I got that, but the book also had scattered attempts at depth.
The plot was good, although I could definitely feel a modern day bias. Toward the end of the book, there was a large section that appeared to be included to add pages and set up a sequel. This part of the storyline had been touched on earlier but only in passing.
The characters ran hot and cold. Isadora fluctuated between that of a woman coming into her own and being overly childish. This, I could almost understand. Ryan was garish and very unpleasant, yet showed sputters of charm. I never warmed up to his character, but I did come close. I didn't understand why he was this way. Whenever it seemed like the two characters were growing in character, they would revert back to old habits.
Ms Wiggs' writing is very good. She has an easy style that takes you right into the scene. She tells enough description to place you comfortably in the setting without bogging you down. Some of her lines are fantastic. I laughed out loud a few times and reread some passages because they were too good for one read through.
While I can't decide on my feelings toward the book, this author is one I will definitely read again.
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Thank you everyone for coming over to say hello. We'll have to do it again, but earlier. I can't ask Nina to get up at 3am again. Sorry, Nina. You ROCK!
Saturday, May 31, 2008
Madeline Hunter SECRETS OF SURRENDER
Anne Mallory THREE NIGHTS OF SIN
Cheryl Holt DOUBLE FANTASY
Friday, May 30, 2008
Granted, our pride can take a beating from time to time, but rarely do I believe any negative comments were meant as malicious. And I have a feeling that even those are no longer seen as an issue.
So many of you have posted announcements on your blogs heralding my debut release. I am overwhelmed. Thank you so much. I am very touched.
I hope you won't mind if I single out one person in particular. Dr. Jennifer Hendren, (VBG) you have been my most honest critic, my biggest supporter, and my most vocal cheerleader, not to mention a great friend and favorite author. You'll never know how grateful I am to have shared this entire experience with you. I cannot wait to stand in the middle of B&N and tell everyone that your books are a must read (and then follow them to the register so they don't leave without them.) THANK YOU!
You guys are phenomenal. My sleeves are rolled up, and I'm ready to help all of you! Who's first?!
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Why am I telling you this? Because... 1. I need a break from my current scene, 2. it helps to vent. (s) Plus, this blog was set up to give an inside view on my writing experience. Don't let those smiling faces on the back of book covers fool you. It isn't all cheery days filled with sunshine.
I know that everyone has their areas of specialty. Descriptive, one character scenes is not mine. I have a friend who does this beautifully *cough* Claire. Every time I read one of her scenes, I sit back and am amazed. How does she do it?
I have taken scenes from well known authors, okay, one author in particular, and studied them to see if I can see what it is they do. There has to be a formula, right? Nope. Writing is an art. grrr. Please don't remind me of craft--not a fan.
So, let's see where I am. I have internals, always good. I have sensory, nice. I have a progressive order of events. I tossed out a full page that was muddier than the Georgia clay my heroine is tromping through. Hmm, how long does she need to be at this particular place before she has interaction with a fellow character, thus bringing in *cue the Hallelujah Chorus* DIALOGUE? Oh happy day. Light has broken through the gray clouds. Woohoo. See, venting is good. (s)
Ms Moning does a great job of pulling you into the story from page one. Gwen Cassidy makes no bones about her reason for being in Scotland and when she and Drustan meet, not only do you know what will happen between them, you can't wait to get there.
The plot is simple and straight forward, which adds to the pace of the story. Ms Moning does a wonderful job of letting the story unfold with enough surprises and twists that you are never bored with what could be a predictable story line.
One thing that I loved were the secondary characters. They were vibrant and interesting. When Drustan threatens to fire Nell, I laughed out loud at her response. Nell and Silvan were strong enough to be endearing but never annoying.
The only eye rolling moment for me was when it seemed that all the MacKeltar births were twins. If this was explained, I missed it.
To be honest, I put off reading this book for quite a while. The reason being, I read the third book concerning the MacKeltar family first and didn't see how all the pieces fit. From what I have recently learned, Ms Moning has several books in the Highlander Series and they are capable of standing alone. Since (to my knowledge) all but three deal with unrelated characters, this shouldn't be a problem. But, with the three books that deal with the MacKeltar family, I would have enjoyed them more if read in order.
Overall, I really enjoyed Kiss of the Highlander (and reread and enjoyed Spell of the Highlander.) Ms Moning is an author that goes on my buy list.
Monday, May 26, 2008
I'll see you there!
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
My debut novel, COST OF FREEDOM is due for release on May 30. My friend, Jen Hendren, has posted a contest for an ebook giveaway on her blog. If you'd like to participate and have a chance to win a free ebook of COST OF FREEDOM, please go to Jen's blog.
I hope to see you there and good luck!!!
Monday, May 19, 2008
THE MURDER GAME is riveting from the first page. A few chapters into the book, I became aware that this book is a sequel. It didn't matter. Ms Barton was able to handle the back story in a way that I didn't feel cheated or confused. She sporadically dropped in just enough information to fill in the gaps but allowed me to stay focused on the present story.
Tense...talk about nail-biting. I couldn't believe what was happening. About one hundred pages from the end, Ms Barton pulled the biggest surprise of all. My mouth hung open for a good twenty pages (in a good way). I kept thinking, are you kidding me? How is this possible? This was no sucker punch, simply good story-telling. I never saw it coming, but should have. All of the clues were there.
The only problem I had was when Ms Barton would jump forward in time without a scene break. This was infrequent but enough to mention. And toward the end of the book, a few spots, not many, felt a little Mary Sueish to me.
The characters in this book were fabulous. I was right there with them, feeling every emotion, and there were plenty to share. If you like a good thriller, that isn't gory, (okay, a little, tiny bit) you need to read this book. There are so many twists and turns, you'll feel like you are getting a workout. I did.
Sunday, May 18, 2008
To Maintain A Healthy Level Of Insanity
1. At Lunch Time, Sit In Your Parked Car With Sunglasses on and point a Hair Dryer At Passing Cars. See If They Slow Down.
2. Page Yourself Over The Intercom. Don't Disguise Your Voice. !
3. Every Time Someone Asks You To Do Something, ask If They Want Fries with that.
4. Put Decaf In The Coffee Maker For 3 Weeks . Once Everyone has Gotten Over Their Caffeine Addictions, Switch to Espresso.
6. Skip down the hall Rather Than Walk and see how many looks you get.
7. Order a Diet Water whenever you go out to eat, with a serious face.
8. Specify That Your Drive-through Order Is 'To Go'.
9. Sing Along At The Opera.
10. Five Days In Advance, Tell Your Friends You Can't Attend Their Party Because You have a headache.
11. When The Money Comes Out The ATM, Scream 'I Won! I Won!'
12. When Leaving the Zoo, Start Running towards the Parking lot, Yelling 'Run For Your Lives! They're Loose!'
13. Tell Your Children Over Dinner, 'Due To The Economy, We Are Going To Have To Let One Of You Go.'
Saturday, May 17, 2008
Dark Rival by Brenda Joyce
Hidden Secrets by Cait London
The Charm School by Susan Wiggs
I'm doing well at finding a variety of authors. Every author needs to be read at least once, and I'm trying to do my part.
Friday, May 16, 2008
1. The rules of the game get posted at the beginning.
2. Each player answers the questions about themselves.
3. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5-6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they’ve been tagged and asking them to read the player’s blog.
4. Let the person who tagged you know when you’ve posted your answer.
A Meme about Various Things
What were you doing ten years ago?
Hmm, ten years ago, I had two young children and was at their beck and call. Actually, this was the best time in my life. I was a home school mom who made sure my children were exposed to all of the arts and life experiences I could find. This was their time and I have no regrets. Now, it's my time. (s)
What are five things on your to-do list for today (not in any particular order)?
Read more of "The Murder Game"
Try to catch up on any loose ends.
What are some snacks you enjoy?
chips and dip
What would you do if you were a billionaire?
Travel and write. Could you imagine, picking up on a whim and going anywhere you want?
What are three of your bad habits?
Leaving used towels in the bathroom
What are five places where you have lived?
New Smyrna Beach, FL
Ormond Beach, FL
What are five jobs you have had?
What were the last five books you read?
Outrageous by Christina Dodd
Uglies by Scott Westerfeld
To Catch A Highlander by Karen Hawkins
Take Me if You Can by Karen Kendall
Two For the Dough by Janet Evanovich
What are five web sites you visit daily (in no particular order)?
Historical Fiction forum
Okay, I tag: Susan, Jane, Jenny, Nina, and Julie
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
This is the first book I've read by this author and I'm not sure what my thoughts are concerning her work. I found the beginning of the book confusing and difficult to become part of. The characters were a bit stiff, but this could be due to the author's attempt at authenticity. The story is set in the 1400s, after all. Everytime I thought I would stop reading, Ms Dodd managed to bring in something that grabbed my attention. For this reason, I will give this author another try.
I'm aware that Ms Dodd writes historical as well as contemporary. Although I will try another of her historicals, I will also read one of her contemporary works.
My overall thoughts...undecided, but willing to try again.
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Friday, May 9, 2008
Tuesday, May 6, 2008
I have to admit, I held off reading this book because I thought it would be a new version of an old Twilight Zone episode. Although the initial concept is there, it does not follow the same plot line. UGLIES explores the depth of the pretty-making-process and the unseen damage that is within the realm of acceptable failure.
Mr. Westerfeld's writing is superb. The reader is swept into his world as if it were their own. The pace and timing are spot on with no sluggish moments and the tension builds perfectly.
Although UGLIES is set in a futuristic world, the setting is not far removed from reality. There is never a distanced and cold feeling, except when Tally jumps into an icy river. The characters are believable and enjoyable and portrayed as intelligent teenagers who still face the awkward transition into adulthood.
All elements for a good story are here and told in an enjoyable fashion. Scott Westerfeld has easily become my favorite YA author.
Monday, May 5, 2008
On a positive note...Having searched every furniture store in the greater Daytona area, I found my desk. What do you think?
Thursday, May 1, 2008
Sunday, April 27, 2008
I really looked forward to this book, mainly because of the setting and time period. As I read, I liked the concept, I liked what seemed to be ahead in the story, but it seemed to be a long time in coming. The characters were one dimensional and I started skimming at one of the climactic scenes.
Overall, I was disappointed.
Friday, April 25, 2008
Here's a small snip from McNight.
The silver fox slid to the end of his seat, arms perched on the desk edge. Cole was certain there was a hissing sound as he prepared to speak. The man’s tongue slipped between his lips, wetting them. Without realizing it, Cole glanced down to see if it was forked.
“Did she say how she found you?” he asked.
“It wasn’t mentioned.”
“I don’t suppose you know where she was going?”
Cole pushed himself up from the chair. He had cursed the strong-willed woman with every step and briar patch he had encountered, especially when blisters had rubbed his feet raw and forced him to walk barefoot. Her destination was not of any interest unless he could be assured of ample time alone with her. Thoughts of a sound thrashing for his unwarranted misery had fueled most of his trip.
“No,” Cole snapped and limped toward the desk. Sitting down had been a serious mistake. His entire body protested his insistence on renewed movement. At least, he had had the forethought to grab his boots before standing. “I don’t know where she is. Just give me my assignment and a horse that doesn’t belong to someone else?”
Foxy laughed and handed him a folded paper. “Isabella Foster is your next assignment. You need to find her and bring her in.”
Monday, April 21, 2008
I've been tagged! Sarita Leone tagged me to play a cyber-game and this one seems like fun. :)
a. Link to the person who tagged you.
b. Post the rules on your blog.
c. Write six random things about yourself.
d. Tag six random people at the end of your post by linking to their blogs.
e. Let each person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment at their blog.
f. Let your tagger know when your entry is up.
Hmm, I think all of my secrets are out, let me think... okay, six random facts about me:
1. I have never developed a taste for coffee. It doesn't matter how you truss it up, I can't stand it. Each time I've tried it, I've had to drink a full glass of water to get the taste out of my mouth.
2. At the back of this wallflowers aspirations, tucked under a pile of old clothes is a desire to act.
3. I played the clarinet in grade school and middle school.
4. I make lasagna and spaghetti noodles from scratch.
5. I am related, by marriage, to the Hatfields of the Hatfields and McCoy fame. I was even given the grand tour of the sites and told their side of the story in great detail by a relative.
6. I have green eyes. (I couldn't think of anything else. *shrug*)
Saturday, April 19, 2008
This is the first book I've read by this author and WOW, what a great read. Never have I been gripped so early in a book. This book has everything and holds nothing back. To be honest, this author's style has a certain agent's fingerprints all over it. I was surprised to discover this person was not her agent. Anyway...
Miss Kendall has a succinct style of writing but not in a way that leaves you feeling cheated. You are left very satisfied. The characters are very nicely drawn, the story is plausible, her research is spot on, and the tension is high. The only complaint I have is there were a few chapters featuring Gwen that didn't seem to fit with the story, but they were entertaining and didn't distract, so...
Overall, you gotta read this book!
Friday, April 18, 2008
When an author has me seriously considering a job change that will take me into the world she's created within the first twenty-five pages--WOW, I'm hooked, big time.
I'll be back with a full review soon. I love finding new authors (to me) that are fabulous.
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
I did start a new wip a few weeks ago, tentatively titled, McKnight. Do three chapters constitute a start? I really need to get going on this. Maybe a word counter in the side bar will help motivate me.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
A few years ago I became friends with a girl when I worked in the theatre. She had Type 1 diabetes, and over the course of our first few weeks together, she told me a little about it. Specifically, she told me about her first symptoms that led to a friend of hers recommending she visit her doctor right away.
I’m glad I listened carefully to what she said. It never occurred to me that several years down the line, I’d be seeing exactly the same symptoms in my son.
The first signs that something was going awry with Alexander were the emotional ones. He’d fly off the handle at the slightest little thing. We couldn’t understand why. Was it something we were doing wrong as parents? Was there some kind of bullying happening at school? We spoke to his teachers, who were already seeing his tempers vary to extremes. My little boy was on the edge of being branded a ‘difficult child’ in school. Then we came to the summer break, and with it, still the temper tantrums, often followed often by exhaustion. Summer went on, and then over the course of the final few weeks, other symptoms started to appear – the raging thirst, and the need to drink what seemed like gallons of water, followed by endless visits to the loo. We went to a movie – he visited the loo immediately before, during, and right after the show. Major alarm bells started to ring, as I remembered my friend’s symptoms. I made notes. Over the course of three days, my son drank an average of three litres of water a day and visited the loo thirty-three times. Armed with this information, we visited the doctor the next day. His words were, “You know what it is already, don’t you, Mum?”
Yes, I did. My son was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.
His life - our lives – changed in that moment. I’d heard my friend’s story, but I didn’t really understand what diabetes was all about. Now I do! Put simply, as I’m not a medical person, it occurs when your body stops producing its own insulin, which is the hormone that regulates your energy levels. No-one fully knows what causes diabetes, but it certainly isn’t caused by ‘eating too much sugar,’ as I’ve heard people say. The body’s blood sugar levels have to be regularly checked, which might be where the confusion arises. In order to do this, my son (and others like him) pricks his finger with a machine containing a sterile lancet, and he applies a drop of blood to a test strip attached to a meter that translates the information into figures. We use those figures to determine if he’s within the optimal blood glucose range, and also to establish what insulin he needs to take. This is balanced and calculated along with the food he eats at every meal or every snack. By doing this, we hope to prevent major, harmful drops or gains in his energy levels – the ‘hypos’ and ‘hypers’ you might have heard about.
I’ve mentioned insulin a couple of times. Alexander injects himself with insulin four times a day. Yes, I said he injects himself! He began to do his own injections about nine moths after diagnosis. Up till then, I’d done it, or his father had. Giving your own child an injection is not easy; neither is watching them inject themselves. But if it didn’t happen...well. You can’t think about the consequences of that too much. You just get on and do it. I should add – insulin is not a cure for diabetes. At this time of writing, there is no cure for diabetes, and it can have far-reaching and potentially harmful consequences, including damage to the eyes, heart and kidneys.
You’d think that by maintaining a routine of testing, eating and exercising well, and keeping up the insulin injections, everything would be perfect. That’s not always the case. Sadly and frustratingly, diabetes isn’t always easy to control.
My son is a very bright boy. He loves theory and reasoning, and can understand most things that can be explained and proved. He knows how his body works, and he knows what he has to do to stay well. If he asks a question, we can usually find the answer somewhere. But there are two questions we can’t answer for him – why this has happened to him, and how things might change for him in the future. Right now, all the signs point to the fact that my son will not outgrow diabetes. It’s a life-long condition, and may involve all kinds of complications further down the line.
But this could change, and research is happening all the time to find a cure. Even in the few years Alexander has been diagnosed, things are moving along. I can’t take the diabetes away and have it instead of him, though like most parents in this position, I’d do that in a heartbeat. But what I can do is help the organisations working towards a cure.
That’s why I’m going to double and donate every penny I raise from the sale of my contemporary love story ‘A Different Kind of Honesty,’ to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. If you buy the book, not only will you get a jolly good read out of it -
I’m also lending my support to Brenda Novak’s wonderful on-line auction for diabetes research! I’ll be donating a book and a basket of organic aromatherapy products to that, and she has some stunning goodies to bid for! Please do take a look.
So that’s it. If you’d like to know more about me, please visit my website. I’m also running a contest to celebrate the release of my book; all the details are at the site. And if you want to drop me a line, please do. I’d love to hear from you.
Thursday, April 10, 2008
I also want to mention, every penny Jane makes from the sale of her book will be doubled and donated to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
Thank you Jane for your generosity and good luck to all who enter.
Sunday, April 6, 2008
First, I am reminded of how small the writing world is. I was looking through an aisle display of books, listening to a woman give me a detailed list of who was good and who wasn't and why she thought this way. This woman may have favorites but let me tell you, she reads the gamut on authors. She was a treasure of information.
Anyway, she pointed out one book and when I turned it over to read the back cover, I almost dropped it. This author is on my Facebook and I had no idea she was an author. Much to my embarrassment, I also learned that she's no small potatoes. Nice to know we befriended each other before I became aware of who she was.
My personal critic continued to advise me. She thrust another book in my hand and said, "This author is fabulous. Start with this one." She tapped the front cover. "Especially if you like gardening."
Ummm, I'm definitely an indoor girl and not fond of the author being regaled. Okay, to be honest, I've not read this author, but I've heard a lot about her. From what I've heard, the author tends to leave a "love her" or "hate her" taste in readers' mouths, and I know where I'd fall.
Trying to be fair, I thought, this is the second time this author has been praised as a must read. I haven't given her a fair chance. At least, read the back and see if the story sounds interesting. I flipped it over. *blink, blink* I stared at an entire glossy, back cover of the author's image. I checked to see if there was a blurb on the first or last few pages. Nothing. Hmm, this spoke volumes to me and nothing flattering. I have to wonder, is she that good that people will purchase her books on her name alone? Is she not interested in new readers?
I nicely thanked the woman for her time, waited for her to leave, and returned the blurbless book to the shelf. Maybe I was right in my thinking after all?
Saturday, April 5, 2008
I have a few books left on my tbr pile, but I plan to go to B&N in a week or so for someone else. While there, I thought I'd restock my supply. Hey, I barely, if at all, read while writing. This is my fix before I jump back in and disappear into the writing world. So...any suggestions out there that are a must read?
Thursday, April 3, 2008
I liked seeing the characters once more and couldn't wait to get to know them better. But by the time I finished the book, I didn't feel like I knew them any more than when I started reading. There was limited action and suspense and when the third body part showed up, I rolled my eyes and put down the book. From listening to other readers, I'm aware that there is a love triangle with the main characters but at this point in the series, I didn't feel any chemistry between Joe and Stephanie.
Oh, well. I did give the series a try with two books.
As an historical author, historical events and settings steel me. I'm sure this won't make sense but...when I walk through historical places, everything around me changes. To prevent you from thinking I'm really weird, I'll not go into detail. Then again, maybe it's just my imagination.
Anyway, to think that she will be in the very place where most of our family was at one time, wow, emotional.
Monday, March 31, 2008
Having loved Mr. Dekker's other work, I couldn't wait to read this series. However, I could only make it to the middle of the book and had to stop. For me, Thomas' endless pursuit of proof dragged on way to long. Come on, halfway into the story and no one believes you? (The sister doesn't count.) At this point in the story, I want to be riveted.
Mr. Dekker's writing style is great, but I'm disappointed with the way the story floundered.
Sunday, March 30, 2008
Miss London has created characters that are as real and endearing as your best friend. Although I was surprised with the speed and depth of Christine and Erik’s relationship, I was in there with them, rooting for it to flourish. The beginning of the book is very detailed but hits a quicker pace as the story progresses. A few times, I thought the story would go in a predictable way, but I was pleasantly surprised with the author’s direction.
This was an enjoyable story.
Friday, March 28, 2008
Miss Williams does a wonderfully job of taking the reader into the world of high-risk jewel thieves Celestia Armstrong and Todd Orso. Her style of story telling is brisk and clean, giving enough details to place you in the scene without bogging down with wordiness or excessive description. While head hopping was present throughout the book, it wasn’t jarring. The play-by-play scenes did tell the action more than show but not so much that it interfered with the story.
I look forward to reading more from this author.