A big family, a reading addiction, and the occasional celebrity scandal are the ingredients of life that create one woman's opinion on just about everything.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

May 2009 Reading List

With 17 books under my belt for May I was thinking that I had to be way ahead of my pace from last year. Turns out I've read 72 books so far this year. Last year at this time I'd read 68. Uh, yeah, so... guess I'm not setting any new records in 2009.

Which isn't to say I'm not extremely happy with reading 17 books. Cuz, ya know, I'm AM happy about that. Really. Truly. Happy. Now if all the rest of life were so easy...

Heck, I'm happy I got this list together and posted. We takes our silver linings where we finds 'em.

May 2009

LOVER AVENGED by J.R. Ward
I didn't buy the last book. Phury's book. I'm not going to buy it now that I've read this one either. For those of you who were subjected to my rant on Vishous' book I can only say this, "I HAD to buy this one." It appears that I didn't have the intestinal fortitude necessary to pass up reading Rehvenge's story.

My take on it? How can Ms. Ward be so good at creating situations and characters that are riveting and not be able to write better dialogue? Other than that it was a decent story and I'm not angry or bitter about the hardcover price. Go figure.
My Grade = B-

TRUE LOVE & OTHER DISASTERS by Rachel Gibson
I read this on a Sunday afternoon and it was just right. Some books just are. This was a very entertaining little story. It won't move mountains, but it's sexy, light and fun.
My Grade = C+

VISION IN WHITE by Nora Roberts
I broke a cardinal rule. I started reading a Nora Roberts book that was part of a series before I had all the books. Big mistake. Big. I'm panting for the next book. I think I've bought four copies of this book for people that I know like NR's books, that's how much I liked it.

This series is called the Bride Quartet. Speaking of which has NR done a series with 4 books before? I'm thinking that are all in the 3s. Anyway this one is about 4 friends who each have individual businesses but work together to put on weddings. VISION IN WHITE is photographer Mackenzie Elliott's story. As already mentioned, I loved the book and didn't want it to end. There are a myriad of reasons, but most notably is Ms. Robert's ability to make the people and situations real. I can only endure until the second book,BED OF ROSES releases in December 2009.
My Grade = B+

EDGE OF DANGER by Rhyannon Byrd
Book 2 in the Primal Instinct series. The first book, as I mentioned last month was a very basic and fundamental introduction to this world. We didn't gain much more in this book and it sort of left me kind of flat. I already bought Book 3, see below.
My Grade = D

FIRST COMES MARRIAGE by Mary Balogh
At least I was bright enough to wait until I had the first 3 of the Huxtable books before starting to read this one. {SIDE NOTE: I'm more than a little bit irked that 3 of these books came out in paperback in successive months and then the 4th and final book is in hardcover. Slimy Dell, very slimy.} Oddly, I've read the first and third books because those characters intrigued me the most. I plan to go back and read book 2. I don't feel like I've missed anything or hurt the series by reading out of order. Enjoyable.
My Grade = B

RELENTLESS by Lauren Dane
This is labeled an erotic romance. I wouldn't characterize it as that steamy. It's futuristic and I remember it as a very competent book. I don't remember being as invested in the characters as much as I should have been. For the most part I like Ms. Dane 's voice and either I'm getting used to her or she's getting better. I look forward to seeing what she does next.
My Grade = C

PURSUIT by Elizabeth Jennings (aka Lisa Marie Rice)
Very good romantic suspense which I bought because I'm a LMR fan and it had other elements I just love not the least of which is strong yet vulnerable H/H. Another very solid read and I enjoyed it so much I recommended it to GG. Yes, he read it too and said 'good book'. BTW, this also came out of my tbr.
Our Grade = B

A MOTHER'S WISH by Karen Templeton
This was my (Keshion's) TBR Challenge book for May because it was the closest thing I could find in my tbr that fit the friends to lovers theme.

This August 2008 SSE#1916 was recommended by probably a gazillion people, but most notably Holly from Book Binge and Wendy our intrepid Super Librarian. This had some absolutely great elements regarding missed opportunities and getting past them. It also deals with adoption issues. Sometimes well, sometimes not. Of course everything comes full circle and there is the HEA, but some of the subject matter bothered me so I didn't grade it as high as some other Templeton books I've read.
My Grade = C+

SURGEON'S LADY by Carla Kelly
Since I read my first Carla Kelly last year for the TBR Challenge I've been a huge fan. Unfortunately there was just something missing in this one. I can't quite put my finger on it, because it's an interesting plot and characters when we find a widowed 'lady' helping out in a naval hospital in Britain in 1809. Normally Ms. Kelly's characters are so realistic that I feel an immediate connection with them. I just didn't get into this book like that. Still very well done and researched.
My Grade = C+

HARD AND FAST by Erin McCarthy
I didn't intend to buy this book. While I've enjoyed many of Ms. McCarthy's books, her last book set in the NASCAR world FLAT OUT SEXY didn't do much for me. I took a peek at this one in the store and decided to give it a go. I'm glad I did. This one had all the elements I love best in a contemporary, a bit of realism, great dialogue and a somewhat believable premise. On top of all that it was a fun read.
My Grade = B

CAINE'S RECKONING by Sarah McCarty
This was my (Nath's) Re-Read Challenge book for May. I originally reviewed this book back in October 2007. I revisited my review to see if I'd changed my opinion at all. I have to say I think I've enjoyed the book more with the second reading. Maybe enough time has passed that I'm not putting so much pressure on myself or Ms. McCarty to make sure every book is the perfection I think PROMISES PREVAIL is. This is the first book in Ms. McCarty's Hell's Eight series. SAM'S CREED is the second book and the third book TUCKER'S CLAIM is due out in October 2009.
My Grade = B

MY FORBIDDEN DESIRE by Carolyn Jewel
I read the next two books out of order MY WICKED ENEMY is the first book, but the blurb on MY FORBIDDEN DESIRE intrigued me so I read it first. Sue me. Is this what they call urban fantasy? It's contemporary with magic, witches, mages, demons, etc? It doesn't matter what you call it, I loved this book. It's edgy, irreverant and has ambiguous characters as the H/H. Can't wait for the next installment.
My Grade = B+

MY WICKED ENEMY by Carolyn Jewel
After reading MY FORBIDDEN DESIRE I want through my tbr to dig out MY WICKED ENEMY not believing I'd left it lingering so long. Again, no adverse results from reading out of order and a very good read. All of which is strange since I'm not your run-of-the-mill fantasy type reader. At all. I'm looking for every Carolyn Jewel book I can find now.
My Grade = B+

EDGE OF DESIRE by Rhyannon Byrd
Book 3 in the Primal Instincts series. Better than 2 but still not as in depth as I would have liked to see this series get. Maybe more books to come? I dunno. I think I'm done with this series.
My Grade = C

ASHES OF MIDNIGHT by Lara Adrian
This was a surprise because I happened on it in the bookstore and didn't know Ms. Adrian had a new Midnight Breed book out. This is book 6 of the series and while I found my interest waning with the last book, I quite enjoyed this one. After what happened to Andreas Reichen in the last book I was glad to see him get his HEA. My Grade = B-

NOT QUITE A HUSBAND by Sherry Thomas
Having been online and out in Romancelandia in a very limited fashion for more than a month now I was surprised to see sort of mixed reviews for this book. The heroine in this book could have been very unlikeable in the wrong hands, but I found this historical interesting and refreshing. I love when characters go through their self-discovery right there in front of us.
My Grade = B

AT LAST COMES LOVE by Mary Balogh
Read out of order again. I skipped the middle Huxtable sister's story because I HAD to read Meg's (Margaret Huxtable) story. As an oldest myself who often had the care of younger siblings I identified with Meg and wanted to see how Ms. Balogh was going to handle her HEA. As it turns out, quite well. As conservative as Meg is, and as careful as she was with the reputations of her younger siblings, she finds she still has the will and interest to take a risk with her own life. Very satisfying read.
My Grade = B

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4 Comments:

Blogger nath said...

LOL, 17 is impressive, Rosie :)

Love, love your list!!! :) It's great! I'm so happy you started putting comments and grades :)

Okay, where to start... We agree a lot on many books :) I think that Gibson was a bit disappointing, but read in the right circumstances, you can overlook the lack of substance :P

I'm so glad that you enjoy the Nora Roberts!! I loved it too and I can't wait for the next book!! Although the cover isn't as nice. Wasn't Carter a great beta/nerdy hero? Hmmm, she usually writes trilogy, but the Night series was longer if I remember correctly, 4 or 5 books. Oh, there was a series about 4 brothers that were "farmers" and another about 4 siblings that grew up as entertaining roadies. But all of these were much older books and are being re-printed by Silhouette.

You are right about Dell, very slimy... Kind of suck as a marketing strategy.

Pursuit was a good book - I think I should re-read it soon :)

I'm glad that you enjoyed Hard and Fast :) Although I felt the opposite though, thought Flat Out Sexy was better... but maybe what didn't work in FOS for you, worked for me... so it's natural that you feel the opposite for Hard and Fast :)

Are you planning to make a longer review for your re-read challenge?

Phew, okay, gonna stop here LOL :)

6:17 PM PDT  
Blogger Rosie said...

Guuuuurl! only you Nath would read a post after I haven't been writing in ages and ask if I was going to do an individual review of the re-read. Sorry kiddo, but I'm not. I reviewed that book at length in 2007 when I first read it and have no intentions of doing a longer one. Although if I wasn't such a slacker lately I would have done one when it was 'due'.

About the NR series you mentioned. Really she has series with 4 or 5 books? I read a lot of her older stuff and don't remember that.

6:36 PM PDT  
Blogger Wendy said...

Yeah, I was kind of wondering how the Templeton would work for someone who has first-hand experience with adoption. You pretty much confirmed by suspicions. And that epilogue! Ugh.

Re: Ward. Pretty much why I can't read the BDB. I'm too much of a dialogue ho.

Nora has several more-than-3 series. Most of them from her Silhouette days. The MacGregors, Stanislaskis, MacKades, Calhoun women and Night Tales - all more than 3. Her most recent series stuff has been "3 books" - with exception of Chesapeake Bay, which clocked in at four.

8:37 PM PDT  
Blogger Rosie said...

SL, I should have known that you would know the deets. When Nath mentioned it I couldn't remember a single series more than 4 as soon as you ticked them off I had a "oh yeah!" moment. Der.

8:51 PM PDT  

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