30 November 2009

Books in the House Monday

A lot of books made their way into the house last week!

From a little shopping trip to B&N:
ANGEL'S ADVOCATE - Mary Stanton, paranormal mystery

From the author (SIGNED!!)

DROP DEAD, GORGEOUS - MaryJanice Davidson, chick-lit mystery

From my buddy Marie-Louise

STRANGE THINGS HAPPEN - Stewart Copeland (yep, that Stewart Copeland), autobio

From Pamala, Our Lady of the Books

BODY IN THE VESTIBULE - Katherine Hall Page, cozy mystery

HALFWAY TO THE GRAVE / ONE FOOT IN THE GRAVE - Jeaniene Frost, paranormal

GHOST WALK - Brian Keene, horror

CHARM CITY - Laura Lippman, suspense

DOWN RIVER - John Hart, mystery

PERSONAL DEMON - Kelley Armstrong, UF

FANGLAND - John Marks, paranormal


29 November 2009

OVER MY DEAD BODY - Michele Bardsley

From the back of the book: Reality truly does bite.
With my ex-husband out of my life after attempting murder (on me!), and my little daughter, Glory, having not uttered a word since that awful night, Broken Heart, Oklahoma, seems like the perfect sanctuary for us. And I, Simone Sweet, am ready to start a new life. I just didn't figure it would be an eternal one.
But then local hunk Braddock Hayes turns my undead world upside down. He's the only one who sees me as I really am, and let me tell you, he makes my fangs quiver. But if he finds out the truth about my past, it would just about kill me (if I weren't already dead, that is). Luckily, no one knows better than me that things aren't always as they appear.
I typically shy away from pararnormal romance since it is all about the romance bordering on erotica, which I don't mind since I am by no stretch of the imagination a prude, but I like my paranormal action on the streets not in the sheets. But this series pushes other buttons with a good story for each of the women who were bitten in the town of Broken Heart, Oklahoma and the street action that accompanies the sheet action. There's some grit to appease my requirements, humor in the dialogue, and well drawn characters.
I was first pulled to the series by the titles. I am a sucker for a fab title. The story sold me and I will keep reading the series as long as Michele keeps writing them.
Four not so dead body beans....

28 November 2009

Link to Nancy Holzner's Contest

Hop on over to Nancy Holzner's blog for some pretty neat prize packages in the month of December. This is a new to me book that I look forward to reading when it's released. Thank goodness for the blog world and that I follow Sci Fi Guy so I could find this author, this book and this contest.

pARTiculars - The Lafayette Art new favorite treasure shop!

Should you find yourself in Lafayette CO, a lovely town near our 'burb, you really should visit pARTiculars Lafayette Art Market. It's a very gorgeous, nicely set up artists' co-op we visited today. I will be back many many times. We found some wonderful Christmas decorations and gifts for friends and family (and me). You can click on the link in the name above and see some of the creations in the shop.

27 November 2009

TGIF!! Do you celebrate Black Friday?

I was going to post an image of some kind of chaos and mayhem that would celebrate the day that is known as Black Friday (click for the Wikipedia definition of this day), but happy bunnies seemed nicer.
So do you go out and join the crowds and dig into the sale bins and racks to get that perfect gift that is at it's lowest lowest price? Or do you do like Lady K and I did this morning and hit Lowes for power strips and some new additions to the Christmas village (girl walking four dogs, a bench, and four more carollers) and then a nice drive-thru at nearby Star$$ for Lady K's mocha frappe with caramel drizzle and my salute to the season, venti nonfat caramel brulee latte. I am usually a venti nonfat, no water chai...but I dare a foo-foo coffee this time of year. Then home to wait for DH to wake up. Off to breakfast soon afterward and maybe SuperTarget for the 32" TV they have the smokin' deal on.
We do plan on getting our tree today at our favorite nursery, Garden Country. We'll decorate it and the house and then enjoy leftovers from yesterday's delish turkey dinner.
However you spend the day, I hope it's diggin' fun!

26 November 2009

Thanksgiving Dinner

the sous-chef

the chef and the sous-chef
Apple pie Lady K and I made this morning

The turkey fresh off the grill

Happy Thanksgiving!!

23 November 2009

HOLIDAY GRIND: Coffeehouse Mystery #8 - Cleo Coyle

From the back of the book: The holidays bring more than eggnog lattes and gingerbread biscotti to the Village Blend. When manager and head barista Clare Cosi finds a red-suited body in the snow, she adds solving Santa's slaying to her coffeehouse menu...
Clare's grown very fond of Alfred Glockner, the part-time comic and genuinely jolly charity Santa who's been using her coffeehouse as a place to warm his mittens. When she finds him gunned down in a nearby alley, a few subtle clues convince her that Alfred's death waas something more than the tragic result of a random mugging, despite the conclusions of the police.
With Clare's boyfriend, NYPD detective Mike Quinn, distracted by a cold case of his own, and ex-husband, Matt, "investigating" this year's holiday lingerie catalogs, Clare charges ahead solo and discovers this Santa had a list that he was checking twice--and the folks on it were not very nice. Then someone tries to ice Clare, and she gets really steamed.
Between baking delicious Christmas goodies and fending off the attentions of a persistent professional Elf, Clare sets out to solve St Nick's murder. But she'd better watch out, because if she fails to stop this stone-cold killer, she may just get the biggest chill of her life
This one of my top favorite cozy series. I was pleased that I won this from Cleo Coyle's site, CoffeeHouseMystery and it's a signed copy! This is chock-full of a superb story and loaded with foo-foo coffee info like Tips For Being Your Own Barista, Coffehouse Terms, Guide to Roasting Terms, and (my favorite) Coffee Drink Recipes, Coffee Syrups, Caffe Latte Recipes (including the Fa-L-La Lattes in the book). And there are Holiday Recipes for the food depicted in the book too. YUM!
This one is my favorite of the series. It shows even more the growing relationship between Mike and Clare and the difficulties and wonderfulness that it is. Clare's ex-husband, Matt, is in the throes of his new marriage and all that that entails and it's causing headaches for Clare as well.

I am always curious how the author will have the main character get involved in the mystery that needs solving. Sometimes they can be a wee bit awkward, but Cleo Coyle always has Clare getting involved rather seamlessly. It's because it's someone she knows or someone she cares about asks her to get involved.

Five yummy holiday beans....

22 November 2009

Holiday Challenge 2009

So, hey, since I always (at least the last few years) read holiday themed books in December, might as well do a challenge with it....Nely is having this one here. I found out about it on my buddy Mary's blog. Thanks Mary!
Book choices for the Holiday Reading Challenge:
LEGACY - Jeanne C Stein, takes place in the Christmas season
JERUSALEM INN - Martha Grimes
And I know there will likely be more as I go on merry shopping way.....

VICIOUS CIRCLE: Felix Castor series #2 - Mike Carey

From the back of the book: In the tradition of megaselling authors Jim Butcher and Neil Gaiman, celebrated comics creator Mike Carey presents a thrilling new novel in his series featuring ghosts, ghouls, and the luckless bastard who hunts them.
Felix Castor has reluctantly returned to exorcism after a successful case convinces him that he can do some good with his abilities---"good" being a relative term when dealing with the undead. But his friend Rafi is still possessed, the succubus Juliet still technically has a contract on him, and he's still dirt poor. Doing some consulting for the local cops helps pay the bills, but Castor needs a big private job to fill the hole in his bank account. That's what he needs. What he gets is a seemingly insignificant "missing ghost" case that inexorably drags him and his loved ones into the middle of a horrific plot to raise one of hell's fiercest demons. When satanists, stolen spirits, sacrifice farms, and haunted churches all appear on the same police report, the name Felix Castor can't be too far behind....
This is one of my favorite series to read and I've only read the first two of the five or six Mike Carey has written. They are hewgah books to read, this one is 549 pages, so the first two have been my bedside books...which means some pretty interesting dreams once I close the book for the night.
Felix is a tough in mind and fortitude if not tough in body. He pushes himself through every day, every minute, even after taking a beating from various entities like loup-garous, succubi, ghosts, other exorcists even. I highly admire this in him as well as how much he cares for his friends and clients, which is generally what causes him to keep on keepin' on.

Five keep on ghost truckin' beans.....

21 November 2009

CUT & RUN: Judge Whit Mosley #3 - Jeff Abbott, narr L J Ganser

From the back of the BOCD: Edgar Award winning nominee Jeff Abbott has been praised for his "exciting , shrewd, and beautifully crafted" (Chicago Tribune) thrillers that "will keep reader guessing" (Publishers Weekly). Now the national best-selling author of BLACK JACK POINT delivers an electrifying story of a decent man pitted against the criminal underworld.
When Judge Whit Mosley sets out to find the mother who abandoned him 30 years before, he discovers that a gang of vicious killers thinks she's made off with their loot. Trapped in a web of violence, Whit's only way out is to track down the missing money before his short-lived family reunion is brought to a bloody end.
CUT AND RUN is a relentless thrill ride filled with stunning plot twists. Through L J Ganser's narration, this tale of family and forgiveness, blood and betrayal will have every listener spellbound.
I do love this series and this one is a humdingah, but I got exhausted trying to keep up with all of the twists and turns. I needed a scorecard to keep track of the players and intrigue and that's hard to do when you are listening to the book on your drive into work. Ah well....
Each book, so far, is dark and sucks the reader right into the depths. There are some funny parts that I look forward to, there are characters I look forward to listening to, especially when Whit and Gooch get together.
I went right along with Whit and his desire to find his mother. He thought it would help his dying father find peace in his last days. I could empathize with how he looked for something he thought he needed to find.
His mother is a piece of work that I alternated between admiring and wanting to smack down. She did what she needed to to survive, but I did not like how she left her husband and six children to begin this survival.
There were some very grey areas of the good and bad that I had to work at to accept. A very good story and I look forward to the rest of the series.
Four grey area beans....

16 November 2009

Happy Birthday to me....

Books in the House Monday

My November order from High Crimes Mystery Bookshop arrived this past week..thankin' you Cynthia!!!
SINK TRAP - Christy Evans, cozy mystery

SECONDHAND SPIRITS - Juliet Blackwell, paranormal cozy

MURDER IN MINIATURE - Margaret Grace, cozy mystery

CARPE CORPUS - Rachel Caine, book 6 Morganville Vampires (and I now have two copies in the house because my memory is faulty)

THE CALLING - David Mack, fantasy

THE ALCHEMY OF STONE - Ekaterina Sedia, sci-fi (thanks for the recommend Sci Fi Guy)

ROSEMARY & RUE - Seanan McGuire, UF

DIPPED, STRIPPED & DEAD - Elise Hyatt, cozy

RIVER DEEP - Priscilla Masters, Brit thriller

BLEAK HISTORY - John Shirley, UF

Let the reading

15 November 2009

Snowstorm #2....Here we go again....

It's been snowing since yesterday afternoon and it's still going. Supposed to go until 5pm today....we will see how that plays out...I am digging the moisture and mellow time. We don't have to go anywhere today, so we can chill (pardon the pun), shovel snow, be mellow with popcorn and movies (or beer and football for DH) all day today.....I like it!


From the back of the book: Kids ask the darndest things....and here are the answers -- all in one helpful book!
Anyone who has ever been a kid, raised a kid, or spent any time with kids knows that asking questions is a critical part of growing up. Kids have curious minds and they come up with some very interesting questions. But the truth is adults don't always know the answers. THE HANDY ANSWER BOOK FOF KIDS (AND PARENTS) comes to the rescue. It addresses nearly 800 questions with enough depth and detail to both satisfy the curiosity of persisitent young inquisitors and provide parents with a secure sense of a job well done.
Written with a child's imagination in mind, this easy-to-understand book permist kids to help themselves because it's organized by simple topical chapters: Outer Spaces; Planet Earth and Our Moon; Creatures Big and Small; Plant Life; People Around the World; Politics and Government; How Things Work; Math, Measurement and Time; All About My Body; and Daily Life. Each question posed is given a complete and satisfying answer, going beyond "because" and "it just is" and "I don't know."
First question: All about my daily body: How do my lungs breathe? How do people breathe in and out? The answer in the book made sense to Lady K. (p207)

Now all plants smell? Answer sort of confirmed what she thought (p 88)

Okay, then how do you know which mushroom is poisonous? No answer in the book other than why are some mushrooms called toadstools (p 95)...okay, Lady K decided to stay away from picking her own mushrooms except at the store...

How hard is my skull? (p 197) Basically answered the question to Lady K's contentment. She thought it was pretty cool that enamel on her teeth was harder than any bone in the body.
Overall, a five bean review due to the wide variety of questions that can be answered. Makes a person go do some more research for thorough answers if need be, but it helps get the questions and answers flowing between child and parent.
I received this from Lisa on OnlinePublicist to review with Lady K. Thank you Lisa!!

11 November 2009

Wanton Wantin' Book List Wednesday!

Even though I have many many many books on Mt Git'r'Read, there's always a plethora of titles to look for on the WWBL (Wanton Wantin' Book List) are a few...
UNBOUND - anthology of the paranormal kind
KING ARTHUR'S BONES - Medieval Murderers
ARIEL - Steven R Boyett, post-apocalyptic fantasy
ELEGY BEACH - Steven R Boyett, post-apocalyptic fantasy
PANDEMONIUM - Daryl Gregory, horror
UNLEASHED - John Levitt
THE SILVER SKULL - Mark Chadbourn

09 November 2009

Books in the House Monday

So...I made a little visit to Orchard Bookstore Sunday afternoon after seeing the movie Astro Boy at the show with Lady K (good flick BTW). I had a box of trade ins and I looked around while they perused my offerings. They took them all and I found four for my shelves and one for my sister and two for Lady K. Lady K's picks were Christmas in style, one is for Christmas crafts which will be fun to do together.
My picks are:
CARPE CORPUS - Rachel Caine, book 6 Morganville Vampires
FADE OUT - Rachel Caine, book 7 Morganville Vampires
SMALL FAVOR - Jim Butcher, book 10 Dresden Files
BLOOD RETRIBUTION - David and Aimee Thurlo, book 2 Lee Nez series
And I picked up
GARDEN SPELLS - Sarah Addison Allen for my sister
What made it into your house?

08 November 2009

THORN QUEEN: Book 2 Dark Swan - Richelle Mead

From the back of the book: Eugenie Markham is a shaman for hire, paid to bind and banish creatures from the Otherworld. But after her last battle, she's also become a queen of the Thorn Land. It's hardly an enviable life, not with her kingdom in tatters, her love life in chaos, and Eugenie eager to avoid the prophecy about her firstborn destroying mankind. And now young girls are disappearing from the Otherworld, and no one -- except Eugenie -- seems willing to find out why.
Eugenie has spilled plenty of fey blood in her time, but this enemy is shrewd, subtle, and nursing a very personal grudge. And the men in her life aren't making things any easier. Her boyfriend Kiyo is preoccupied with his pregnant ex, and sexy fey king Dorian always poses a dangerous distraction. With or without their help, Eugenie must venture deep into the Otherworld and trust in an unpredictable power she can barely control. Reluctant queen or not, Eugenie has sworn to do her duty--even if it means facing the darkest--and deadliest---side of her nature....
It appears, at least to me, that Richelle Mead can do no wrong. I've read books in two of her three series and I've enjoyed them all. And I know I will enjoy the rest of each series and I look forward to trying her Vampire Academy adventures. STORM BORN was superb and THORN QUEEN is even better.
Eugenie has her work cut out for her and it's more to do with the reluctant running of her kingdom than her work as a shaman. She is learning what it takes to be a queen, even if she doesn't think of herself as one. She wants to help the people in her area and does what she can to help them find water and how to make a living in their new desert environment. Eugenie honestly cares about people and works her way through her original thoughts on Otherworld denizens, especially as she accepts herself as at least half Otherworld.
Five honkin' excellent beans......

BLOODY AWFUL - Georgia Evans

From the back of the book: In the second of Georgia Evans' supernatural trilogy, Gloria Prewitt must reveal her greatest secret to have any hope of saving the people she loves....
As the district nurse for a country village outside London, Gloria has the respect of the town and the satisfaction of helping those who need it most. She'd lose both if anyone discovered that she turns into a furry red fox and runs through the Surrey hills by moonlight. But what she sees on those wild nights suggests Brytewood is under attack--from a saboteur with superhuman powers and the force of the Nazi Luftwaffe behind him.
What can one werefox do against a predator with devastating weapons at his at his command--and the strength of the undead besides? What can a woman with a secret reveal without losing all she has? With the help of a couple of Devonshire Pixies, a Welsh dragon, and two men too stubborn to admit they're outnumbered, Gloria might just find out the answers....
I really enjoyed the first in the series, BLOODY GOOD , but this one is even better. Alice and Peter are getting married and are only really peripheral in this story. This one is more Gloria, the were-fox, and her dilemma of wanting to help her village and what to do about her growing attraction to the manager of the 'secret' munitions plant on the hill. She knows something is going on with the new baker in town, something sinister, but who can she trust?
Her romance with Andrew bounds along at a gallop, which I reckon is what happens in certain circumstances like war occurring on your home ground.
The vampires in this one are as different as they can be in any story I've read in my much loved paranormal books. They are truly evil and truly helpful.
I love this village of Brytewood, too. I'd like to find out what draws these Others to this particular place.
I really look forward to the third book in the trilogy, BLOODY RIGHT, which looks to be about Gryffyth Pendragon, invalided out from the war against the Third Reich. There's still war to be fought at home....
Five excellent Other beans.....

03 November 2009

It's Time for the Annual Book Blogger Holiday Swap

Just found out about the annual Book Blogger Holiday Swap. I signed up and now want to share with whoever finds this on this here blog o' mine. Head on over here and sign up before 12 November and you can be part of this fun Secret Santa style prezzie exchange.

02 November 2009

Books in the House Monday

From Ginny: THE GHOST WRITER - John Harwood, this one's been on the WWBL for a while, Thank you Ginny!
From Deb, my sweet SIL: STILL LIFE - Louise Penny
Book win from fab Jennifer Rardin: OVER MY DEAD BODY - Michele Bardsley, signed!!
From Janet: BOOKMARKED FOR DEATH - Lorna Barrett

01 November 2009

BLOOD AND CHOCOLATE - Annette Curtis Klaus, narr Alyssa Bresnahan

From the back of the book: Vivian Gandalon is a teenaged werewolf with problems. Her father, the pack leader, was killed in a fire, and so the pack is in disarray. The young male members of the squabbling pack howl for her, but still she feels alienated and alone.
To be more than human is a lonely thing. Vivian longs to have friends and fit in as school. She yearns to escape her legacy of violence and forbidden appetites, but the beast within her longs for something elementally deep and rich. She glories in her ability to change form woman to wolf. How can she choose between being human or beast? She fiercely hopes that her relationship with a kind and sensitive meat-boy, a human, will help her find some answers.
Talented narrator Alyssa Bresnahan casts a spell over listeners as she becomes the beautiful and sensuous young werewolf princess. This suspenseful, haunting, and magical tale is best read by the light of the full moon.
Alyssa Bresnahan, the narrator, is the reason I kept listening to this story. I did not like Vivian at all. Klaus wrote the character well as I wanted nothing more than to reach inside the story and smack the crap out of Vivian, spoiled and self-centered creature that she was. She couldn't understand why no one wanted to be her friend, since she was so special and beautiful.
The story of the pack and the hierarchy was a fascinating aspect that didn't get a lot of play. Another little downfall, I figured out who the bad guys were as soon as the bad stuff started happening to Vivian.
Alyssa Bresnahan kept me listening, though. Some narrators can do that for a story. I will look for more of her narrated works.
Four because of the narrator beans....

Lady K's Halloween 2009

Behold, the Winged Vampire Princess....

October 2009 Book Journal

October was all horror or paranormal...a fun month of reading....

BROKEN - Kelley Armstrong, MPB, love the Elena stories
DEATH'S DAUGHTER - Amber Benson, MPB, pretty darn entertaining
DEAD UNTIL DARK - Charlaine Harris, BOCD
DEFINITELY DEAD - Charlaine Harris, BOCD
THE MEDIATOR: REUNION - Meg Cabot, BOCD, excellent
THE GRAVEYARD BOOK - Neil Gaiman, BOCD, highly superb
THE HARROWING - Alexandra Sokoloff, MPB, good horror story
SOULLESS - Gail Carriger, MPB, darn good and book 100 for the year
HEAD GAMES: A Body Bags Mystery - Christopher Golden, BOT, darn good
STORM QUEEN: Dark Swan #2 - Richelle Mead, MPB, superb
BLOOD & CHOCOLATE - Annette Curtis Klaus, BOCD, so-so story about a spoiled brat werewolf teen
Books: 5
Audio: 7
Total for the month: 12
Total for the year: 103

Fall Back 2009

Don't forget, One Hour BACK!!