Tuesday, February 28, 2012

UTC Challenge Update #3

Well, as far as this challenge goes, I didn't read all that much towards it this month. That's alright, I still have plenty of time. I guess I could knock out 4/5 on my vampire list if I really wanted, since I just re-read the entire Twilight series (shush, I actually DO like the books... No hating here!) But since there are some that I'm going to read for sure this year, I'm going to only replace my other re-reads. I'm also putting a new book on my vampire list, even though the main character isn't a vampire in the traditional sense. He is, but he isn't. It's complicated. Other than that, not a whole lot going on in my world. How are you guys doing? Read any good books lately?

Category 1: Vampires:
1. Twilight-Stephenie Meyer (reread)
2. Once Burned- Jeaniene Frost
3. Hunted- Evangeline Anderson
4. Lover Reborn- J.R. Ward
5. Lothaire- Kresley Cole

Category 2: Angels and Demons:
1. Envy- J.R. Ward
2. Torment- Lauren Kate
3. Crave- J.R. Ward
4. Fallen- Lauren Kate
5. Speak of the Devil- Jenna Black

Category 3: Fae:
1. Bound by Darkness- Alexandra Ivy
2. Bloodfever- Karen Marie Moning
3. Night Seeker- Yasmine Galenorn
4. Grave Witch- Kalayna Price
5. Faefever- Karen Marie Moning

Category 4: Shifters and Werewolves:
1. Fair Game- Patricia Briggs
2. Gunmetal Magic- Ilona Andrews
3. Magic Slays- Ilona Andrews (reread)
4. Under Her Skin- Jeaniene Frost, Meljean Brooks, Ilona Andrews
5. The Dragon Who Loved Me- G.A. Aiken

Lady D

Monday, February 27, 2012

Claimed, by Evangeline Anderson

Claimed (Brides of the Kindred, #1)Claimed by Evangeline Anderson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Earth has come under attack by an alien race known as "The Scourge." Earth, who was still under the impression that aliens were nothing, had no defenses against them. That is, until another alien race of warriors known as "The Kindred" came along and helped fight the Scourge off. The only thing that the Kindred asked in return is a genetic trade with Earth. Since their race has so few females, the warrior males wish to find their brides among the human females on Earth.

Olivia "Liv" Waterhouse is a nursing student living in Tampa, FL, with her twin sister Sophie, and her best friend, Kat. Her life is going fine until one day, she gets "Drafted." All Earth females between the ages of 19-35 are put into a draft, and if the Kindred claim a woman as their bride, she has to go to him, on the Kindred mothership, for one month, to see if he can convince her to "bond" with him.

Baird is a beast Kindred who calls Liv as his bride. She goes up on the mothership, rather unwillingly, to allow Baird to try and persuade her to stay with him.

I love this story. I love the premise, I love the characters, I love the world. All the new and interesting technology and creatures that Ms. Anderson incorporates are wonderful. I am a Star Trek lover, and that's what this reminded me of in a way. I felt for Liv, when she didn't want to lose her family on Earth, but Baird was so broody, so tortured, and he just wanted to love Liv, and worship her, and that made me also empathize with him.

The only thing that kept me from giving this story five stars was the typos and spelling errors. There weren't too awful many, but enough that it was distracting for someone who looks at those things.

This story is erotic fiction, and on that level, Ms. Anderson doesn't disappoint. The erotic scenes between Baird and Liv can only be summed up as HOT. Be sure to have your significant other close, otherwise you'll be left feeling frustrated... ;)

All in all, this book was wonderful, and I can't wait to read Sophie and Sylvan's story, which is the next in the lineup.

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Lady D

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day...

Ok readers, it's Valentine's Day. I used to be horribly cynical about Valentine's Day, mainly because I was so often alone on Valentine's Day. Now, what I should've done, instead of being broken hearted and cynical is to get out there and read some awesome romance novels. So, stealing this idea from an author I follow on facebook, who is your favorite romance couple?

I answered mine as either Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth from Jane Austen's Persuasion, or Cathy and Heathcliff from Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights. But there are so many other awesome couples out there as well! Cat and Bones from Jeaniene Frost's Night Huntress series, Curran and Kate from Ilona Andrews' Kate Daniels series, and so many more! So, I want you guys to weigh in! Who's your favorite romance novel couple?

Lady D

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Literary rant

Ok, I need to go on a bit of a rant here. This is a book blog, so, I truly think that this rant fits on this blog.

Ok, so, at work, we listen to a "Top 40's" style station, and one of the songs frequently played is "Love Song" by Taylor Swift. Now, don't get me wrong, the song is ok, if you like the sort of pop-country crossover thing, but that's not what I find wrong with the song. If you've never listened to the song, here it is:

Now what I really think is wrong with this song is this line: "You were Romeo I was the Scarlet Letter." Now, I don't know about you, but I think it's rather disturbing for this supposedly young girl singing about being an adulteress who got pregnant by a married man while she was married... by a MINISTER no less! Now, if you've never read the Scarlet Letter, well, sorry, I just let the end of the book out. Oh well. But I mean, come on! Has Talor Swift ever even READ the Scarlet Letter? Obviously not, by that line alone.

So, I've decided that three things have happened here. One: Taylor Swift has never read the Scarlet Letter. Two: Taylor Swift hopes that none of her fans/listeners has ever read the Scarlet Letter. Three: The person who wrote the song (does Taylor Swift write her own music?) hopes that neither Taylor nor her fans have ever nor will ever read the Scarlet Letter.

I mean, I might just be being a bit nit-picky here, but REALLY? REALLY? DO SOME RESEARCH! Ok, sorry. End of rant. Please, feel free to comment, and tell me what you think.

Lady D

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Father Mine

Father Mine: Zsadist and Bella's Story (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #6.5)Father Mine: Zsadist and Bella's Story by J.R. Ward
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Father Mine is a short story that is a continuation of Zsadist and Bella's story. It picks up sometime after Lover Enshrined, but going on at the same time as well.

This story starts after Nalla is born, about three months after, in fact. Zsadist is still having a hard time dealing with his past as a blood slave, and it's taking a toll on his mating, and with his relationship with his daughter.

This is a sweet, romantic story that I was hoping for, having finished Lover Awakened and almost feeling cheated by the ending. This book gives Bella and Z their HEA, and it really makes me love Z more. Great short story, and a must-read for any BDB fans. :)

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Lady D

Monday, February 6, 2012

A Breath of Snow and Ashes

A Breath of Snow and Ashes (Outlander, #6)A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

With the revolutionary war coming to a head, life is turbulent for those in Fraser's Ridge. Jamie, Claire, Roger, Bree, and Ian make some tough choices in this book that will end up changing their lives forever. And as the time draws nearer for that newspaper clipping claiming that Jamie and Claire die in a fire, everyone holds their breaths to see what is going to happen.

I loved this book just as I loved the others. My only problem with Ms. Gabaldon's books is that because they're so long, if I don't keep my facts straight, the books start running together. This book got a bit slow for me in the middle, I don't know why, but I had to put it down for a while, and ended up reading another book, but as soon as I picked it back up, I finished it in two days. Go figure.

The writing style is as always, genius. Ms. Gabaldon knows her history, and it really shines through in her work. Pick up this series if you haven't yet. As I said, the books are a bit long, about 1000 pages each, but you won't be sorry!!!

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Lady D

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Under Her Skin

Under Her SkinUnder Her Skin by Jeaniene Frost
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

"Pack" by Jeaniene Frost- 3.5 stars

In Pack, we meet Marlee who, while hiking alone, gets attacked by werewolves. She's rescued from her attackers by Daniel, who also happens to be a werewolf. Marlee is taken back to the town the pack lives in while they wait to see if Marlee is going to change at the full moon.

While she's stuck waiting, Daniel is guarding her to make sure she doesn't escape. There is attraction between the two, which Marlee attributes to Stockholm syndrome, but Daniel thinks is because of something else.

This short story was very different from what Ms. Frost normally writes. It was good, But seemed too short to develop the story properly. If Ms. Frost were to take it and make it into a full length novel, I think it would do very well.

"In Sheep's Clothing" by Meljean Brooks- 4 stars

Here we meet Emma, who left Pine Bluff six years ago after she was attacked and turned into a werewolf. She's returning now, having gained control over her wolf so that she can tell her former flame, Nathan, that she's a werewolf, and so she can settle back into the town.

Unfortunately, Emma is attacked by serial murderer who has been plaguing the town, and bites him. Now she and Sheriff Nathan need to find the murderer before he becomes even more dangerous as a new werewolf.

This story is great. Even though it is short, it allows for romance, suspense, and action. The characters were lacking a bit of development, but they were truly likable anyways. Great story overall.

"A Grace of Magic" by Ilona Andrews- 5 stars

Everything that Ilona Andrews writes is amazing, and this story continues that trend. Meet Grace, who recently learned that her family is indebted to another. She is called upon due to the debt to help the other family in place of her mother.

Grace meets Nassar, who is a revenant, or someone who has taken over someone else's body. Grace does not like that her family is indebted to this other family, but is willing to do whatever she has to to keep her family safe.

This story may be short, but it is complex, riveting, and keeps you entranced to the end. I sincerely hope that Ilona Andrews does more with this world, because it is a gem.

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Lady D

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

One for the Money

One for the Money (Stephanie Plum, #1)One for the Money by Janet Evanovich
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the first book in the Stephanie Plum series. Now, I normally shy away from crime books, but my aunt has been trying to get me to read this series for years, and so I finally picked it up after seeing the trailer for the movie. All I have to say is WOW.

Stephanie Plum is amazing! She's smart mouthed, funny, and clumsy. She's extremely easy to relate to! She is newly divorced, and recently laid-off. She's in desperate need of cash, and so she seeks out a job at her cousin's bail bond company. As luck has it, one of the bondsmen recently came down ill, and so she weasels her way into the position.

Reading about her trying to learn the ropes is hilarious. She's afraid of her gun, and completely out of her league with this job. The secondary characters provide great laughs as well. You have Ranger, who is another bondsman for Vinnie, Grandma Mazur, Stephanie's grandmother who provides great comic relief, and you have Joe Morelli.

Any time that Stephanie and Joe are on the page together is great. He's a former... fling for Stephanie, and the sexual tension that leaks from these two is great. Joe also kind of wronged Stephanie in the past, so, she tried to run him over with her father's Buick. So, needless to say, there's also just general tension between the two. It's awesome.

And then there is the main antagonist, a boxer named Rodriguez. He plagues Stephanie this whole book, and to be honest, some of the dialogue between the two got a bit uncomfortable for me. There is some mention of rape, and that's a subject that I'm really uncomfortable with. But Janet Evanovich did a great job with the subject, and she never really let it get too uncomfortable.

The plot I thought was a bit predictable at times, but at the end, I completely got thrown for a loop. Ms. Evanovich did a great job with this ending!

In the end One for the Money is a fun, fast-paced, breezy read that's great for anyone. I can't wait for the next book to see what's going to happen to Stephanie!!

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Lady D