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.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

April 2010

I have to say that trying to write even a blurb about books I read almost three months ago wasn't easy. On the other hand, with books I really liked the words flow pretty easily. You'll probably be able to tell when that happens.

Whenever I hit 15 books for the month, I'm plenty happy. Since I'm writing this list and it's July, I can tell you that my reading after April really started to slow down. Funny, that's in direct proportion to the increase of stuff happening at work.

JARED by Sarah McCarty
After my less than pleasant feelings on CALEB, the first of the western vampire books by Ms. McCarty, it begs the question why I picked up this book. Plain and simple it's the desperate hope that I'll feel, read and find the gold I found in Ms. McCarty's early PROMISE books. Not here, but a better book than CALEB to be sure.
My Grade = C

This book dives into the BDSM world in a big way. One of the things I like about Ms. Banks is her characters unapologetic sexual preferences. She breaks from that a bit with Micah's protective feelings for his friend David's younger sister, Angelina. I didn't have the emotional buy-in I usually do with her stories.
My Grade = C

A TOUCH OF SCANDAL by Jennifer Haymore
I had a HINT OF WICKED on my bookshelf and yet couldn't find where I've listed or reviewed it anywhere. Weird. However, what I do know is that this book is Garrett's story. Garrett is the husband who comes back from the dead in A HINT OF WICKED and arrives just as his wife is moving on with her life.

In this story, Garrett is trying to come to terms with the life he has which is not at all the life he expected. Into this walks Katie the sister/servant to a titled, cruel and selfish brother.
My Grade = B

SILVER BORNE by Patricia Briggs
I will never miss the chance to read a Mercy Thompson book, however, this story had a lot to do with the fae. Not my favorite, at all. What saves it for me is the consistently well written characters, each with their own story arc, and Ms. Briggs continued diligence in building this world and the people who inhabit it. She never forgets her readers, and yet continues to build Mercy's world keeping it growing and changing as Mercy does.

I'm ready for more and would love to read the next Alpha Omega book too.
My Grade = B

This is a historical Arcane book. I hadn't read Ms. Quick in sometime and I can't say if it was the absence or if the book was just that good. Botanist Lucinda Bromley is no stranger to controversy having been suspected of poisoning people in the past, even her own father. Once she appears set up for another murder she decides to hire an Arcane Society investigator to find out why she's been targeted. Into her world walks Caleb Jones with secrets of his own. Very enjoyable read with the snappy dialogue we all have come to enjoy from Ms. Quick (aka Jayne Ann Krentz)
My Grade = B+

LION'S HEAT by Lora Leigh
Yes here I am back to my old tricks buying Lora Leigh books again. I HAD to buy this one. It was the long awaited Jonas Wyatt book. A bit better plotted than some of my recent Lora Leigh reads, I was still bummed this book didn't have more bite to it. No pun intended. Well... maybe a little bit.
My Grade = C

A couple of years ago I read a review of a Kelly Hunter category romance on Nath's blog and gave the Harlequin Presents book a whirl. It was an enjoyable little romp with a heroine who was a limo driver. Seeing this in the store and remembering that book I picked this one up. This time I found a predictable lost love story that was not as satisfying as my previous read.
My Grade = C

WHAT THE LADY WANTS by Jennifer Crusie
Another re-release of an older Crusie book that had me shuffling to my keeper shelf to pull my copy down and re-read. Mitch is finishing up a year long bet to make a $1,000 as a PI. Mae Sullivan saunters into his office looking for help. Each fascinated with the other, this book was so much fun to read and the dialogue is wonderful.
My Grade = B+

ON SHADOW BEACH by Barbara Freethy
This book is actually book 2 of the Angel Bay series. And, no, I didn't read book 1 which did not impair or impact my reading of this book at all. Here we find Lauren Jamison returning to Angel Bay to help her Dad out. Lauren's family was fractured several years prior when her sister was murdered. Her mother leaves Angel Bay, but her Dad stays, almost in homage to his dead daughter. One of the suspects in the unsolved murder was Lauren's boyfriend, Shane. Shane has returned to Angel Bay as well, only not for a visit, but to stay.

Good solid read and I am looking forward to further installments about the lives and loves of Angel Bay.
My Grade = B

A re-read of Ms. Jewel's paranormal series seemed in order. This is actually the second book, but I read them out of order the first time, so why not again as a re-read? Xia and Alexandrine are as wonderful the second time around as they were the first. One of my favorite things when I'm reading is when the author knows their characters so well there are wonderful subtle and seamless details making the story a full bodied read. Yum!
My Grade = A

MY WICKED ENEMY by Carolyn Jewel
Another good story. This is warlord Nikodemus and witch Carson Philips tale. After the second reading I really do think one can benefit from reading in order. *g* However, I gobbled up both of these books with the same enthusiasm the second time around as I did the first. I cannot wait for MY IMMORTAL ASSASSIN which is due out in January 2011. Chapter One of the new book is available on Ms. Jewel's website.
My Grade = A

FRAGILE by Shiloh Walker
Is a companion book to BROKEN. Again I read the books about the two Rafferty brothers out of order. I read BROKEN in March and FRAGILE in April. They were written in the opposite order. Again, these books stand very well on their own. While there are references to the brothers' relationships, this in no way impairs the story. Having read BROKEN first did not give away anything of Luke's story or spoil it at all.

Luke has turned in his combat gear for hospital scrubs. He's attracted to overworked Devon Manning who is a social worker. Both of these characters carry emotional baggage from their childhood and their adult careers.

While a born protector and care giver, Devon is struggling to find his place in the world now that he's not a soldier any more. Watching the evolution of Luke and Devon walking through the minefield of their pasts to find peace and love in their futures made for a good read.
My Grade = B+

OPEN COUNTRY by Kaki Warner
I reviewed this one for Book Binge here.
My Grade = B

EIGHT DAYS TO LIVE by Iris Johansen
I've been reading Iris Johansen books for almost 25 years. That's just mind boggling. This is another Eve Duncan book with the story focusing on Eve's adopted daughter Jane MacGuire. In EIGHT DAYS TO LIVE Jane gets mixed up with a cult who believes Jane is revealing their secrets in one of her paintings. You always know what you are getting with Ms. Johansen, the requisite mystery and continued ambiguity about Jane's love life.
My Grade = B-

WICKED BECOMES YOU by Meredith Duran
Gwen Maudsley has been jilted for the last time. Deciding not to conform to society's dictates any longer. Gwen asks her late brother's best friend to tutor her in how to flout convention and live her life as she chooses. Of course Alexander Ramsey believes he knows what's best for Gwen and it's definitely NOT him. Another wonderful historical from Meredith Duran that I thoroughly enjoyed and just picking it up again for this post, remembered how much fun it was to read.
My Grade = B+



Blogger nath said...

Muahaha! I found the post!! yay for Google Reader :D

A pretty decent months read-wise (like quality).

What didn't you like in Silver Borne? I was torn about it. I loved the Pack business... but though the rest was weak.

5:59 PM PDT  

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