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.

Monday, January 04, 2010

December 2009

I only read five books in December. That says it all. It was quite the busy month, but then it always is. You'd think after all these years I'd have a bit more perspective and acceptance, wouldn't you?

Here they are.

HARD TO HOLD by Stephanie Tyler

I picked this book up by accident. Of course once I noted it was a SEAL book it pretty much closed the deal on me buying it. This first book is about SEAL Jake Hansen who on one of his missions rescues Doctor's Without Borders physician, Isabelle Markham from a near death hostage situation. Well done and an enjoyable read. My only beef is wishing for a bit more character layering.
My Grade = B

Re-read of a trilogy of stories in one trade paperback. Individually published by Ellora's Cave these three linked stories have Ms. Strong's own brand of vampirism and lore. It's on my keeper shelf and was a "lighter" vampire story and not as PC as some.
My Grade = B

STAND IN GROOM by Suzanne Brockmann
This is one of Ms. Brockmann's earlier works and one I hadn't read before so I snapped it up when it was re-released. This is a contemporary marriage of convenience story. Some interesting dynamics on this often used story device and your certainly see glimmers of the wonderful writer she is today.
My Grade = B-/C+

EARLY DAWN by Catherine Anderson
I hadn't read a Catherine Anderson book in ages but when I saw this was a western I decided to pick it up. Having read about Eden Paxton's siblings in earlier books I had no trouble jumping into this one and enjoying it.

After a horrible break up with her fiance in San Francisco, Eden decides to lick her wounds and move to Colorado to be near her loving and protective half brothers. On the way the train is robbed and Eden is kidnapped. Matthew Coulter is hunting the men who murdered his wife when he finds Eden their captive and has to decide whether it's more important to rescue Eden or exact his revenge.

This had the best things I love about westerns. Real people in extraordinary circumstances.
My Grade = B

SUMMER BREEZE by Catherine Anderson
This is an earlier book about the Paxton's that I had in my tbr and pulled out after reading EARLY DAWN. In this book Rachel Hollister has lived literally closed off from the world since the massacre of her family years earlier. When her only contact with the world, her hired man, is bushwhacked, her neighbor Joseph Paxton promises him that he will take care Rachel while he heals. But how do you take care of someone barricaded in their home?

I had some issues with the ending of this book, but if you like well written character driven westerns, you'll like this and who knows maybe the ending won't bug you.
My Grade = B



Blogger Holly said...

I remember reading Summer Breeze years ago and adoring it..but I'm not sure I'd feel the same today. Looking back there were a lot of flaws. But still, I think back on it fondly.

3:49 PM PST  
Blogger Rosie said...

Holly, I was just thinking about that when I wrote the post about the timing of reading a book. SUMMER BREEZE is 4 years old but so much has happened in the romance reading world since then. In my January list is the classic (for some) BEAST by Judith Ivory. Since I read it long after it's original release, it didn't have quite the same impact on me.

I also think the longer you read the more discerning you are, well most people.

3:58 PM PST  
Blogger Wendy said...

I'm pretty sure I read Summer Breeze for review when I was still with TRR. I remember liking it, but not being wow'ed by it - so I'm sure my grade was very similar to yours (either a B- or B). It was a solid read, but (and don't ask me what they were now) I had quibbles. But still...I thought it was solid.

I've got Early Dawn sitting on the floor in my home office. Picked it up at our last So. Cal. Blogger gathering and naturally I haven't done a darn thing with those books yet.

4:13 PM PST  
Blogger Rosie said...

SL, we had a short convo about this at the get together because I mentioned I'd read Ms. Anderson after a long drought. It was the ending... I think we were in close agreement on that.

4:26 PM PST  
Blogger Katiebabs a.k.a KB said...

I used to love reading Catherine Anderson, but her latest stories are just too women fiction like for my tastes.

4:34 PM PST  
Blogger Rosie said...

Kb, I would to a degree if we are talking about her contemporaries, but I don't think the same could be said of her historicals.

4:42 PM PST  
Blogger Katiebabs a.k.a KB said...

Have you ever read Annie's Song? One of my all time favorite romances about a young deaf girl raped and ends up pregnant and the rapist's brother marries her and sees how special she is. Love that book so much.

4:43 PM PST  
Blogger nath said...

ahhh Rosie, you cheated again!!! Luckily, I have Google Reader!!

I'm pretty sure I read Summer Breeze and thought it was okay. but then, I'm not a fan of western. I saw Early Dawn, but decided to skip. Have overdosed on this author ^_^;

I'm still undecided on the Stephanie Tyler. I've overdosed on the whole SEAL, navy, army heroes as well ^_^; Sad no?

8 is very good for December, considering how holidays are busy for you :D

3:23 PM PST  

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