Sunday, August 31, 2014

Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

Contemporary Romance

From Goodreads:

The dead of winter.
An isolated island off the coast of Maine.
A man.
A woman.
A sinister house looming over the sea ...

He's a reclusive writer whose macabre imagination creates chilling horror novels. She's a down-on-her-luck actress reduced to staging kids' puppet shows. He knows a dozen ways to kill with his bare hands. She knows a dozen ways to kill with laughs.

But she's not laughing now. When she was a teenager, he terrified her. Now they're trapped together on a snowy island off the coast of Maine. Is he the villain she remembers or has he changed? Her head says no. Her heart says yes.

It's going to be a long, hot winter.

Heroes Are My Weakness is typical of Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ books.  A strong but insecure female and a haunted male are at the heart of the story.  Annie is down on her luck but not crying.  She can live in the cottage on Peregrine Island for 60 days while she decides what to do.  Theo was not supposed to be on the island.  He was her teenage love interest until he turned on her and left her feeling betrayed.  Now he is there because of his writer’s block.

Of course the two cannot keep from being thrown together.  Look for danger as someone tries to make Annie leave the cottage, tension between Annie and Theo, more than one wounded character, great puppets, fun dialog and finally romance.  The book is a little darker than some of Phillips’ books.  There are quite a few red herrings scattered around the book making it harder to see who is trying to run Annie off.  Just when I was sure I knew who was doing what I found I was on the wrong track or maybe I was just being fooled again.

Heroes Are My Weakness is a good addition to Phillip’s books.  If you are a fan you will love it and if you have never read any of her books this is a good introduction.

William Morrow published Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips in 2014.

What Else I Read or Listened to in August, 2014

Audio Books:

By its Cover by Donna Leon- A Commissario Guido Brunette
Mystery:  This is the latest Brunette mystery set in Venice.  Something is happening to rare books.  Some are missing. Some have pages cut out.  Brunette in called in to solve the mystery.  Leon has written another good mystery that again hits on the state of politics in Venice and Italy.  I loved that part but felt we in the US has better be careful or we could end up with some of the same.  My only disappointment in By its Cover - there was little about Brunette's family, especially his children.  All in all though it is a very good addition to the series.  I started the series in the middle and have had no trouble keeping up.  Each book does a good job as a stand alone.

Pennies On A Dead Woman's Eyes (A Sharon McCone Mystery)  by Marcia Muller - I listen the the Sharon McCone mysteries in the order my library get them so they are in no particular order.  This one was written in the late 1990. Hi is in this one and it is early in their relationship.  I was surprised by who did what in this story.  It held my attention from the first.


The Garden of Stones by Mark T. Barnes - The Garden of
Stones is a very complex story. Since this is book one there is a heavy dose of world building, back story and character development. I had to pay particular attention to all the detail or I would have lost out on much of the story. Barnes includes a cast of characters, a glossary of terms and list of cultures in the back of the book. I suggest reading that before you get to the end. Book one just sets the scene and introduces the world and characters. Some problems are solved but much is left hanging. There is a surprise at the end but I had a feeling that someone who was suppose to be dead would show up somewhere in the series. While I like the book I am not sure I will continue with the series. It is not an easy book to get through and did not leave me completely hooked. (I do own book 2 so that fact that I did not immediately pick it up says a lot about the book.)

Behind the Shattered Glass (A Lady Emily Mystery) by Tasha Alexander - I love a good mystery and Behind the Shattered Glass has one.  The Marquess of Montagu comes into Anglemore Park (Colin and Emily's country home) and drops dead at their feet.  He seems to be the perfect gentleman but much happens to show he is not.  Someone killed him and there are so many false trails the actual killer was a real surprise.  A great addition to the Lady Emily series.

Nexus by Nicolas Wilson - Nexus is fast paced.  It is action filled.  
The story is told mainly in dialog.  Saying all of that it should have more than three stars but it just did not make the grade for me.  The dialog just tried to be too cute.  I had trouble tell who was saying what.  The characters did not have names.  They were identified by their position on the ship.  There was little character development and a lot of character bashing.  All of that fast paced action is the set up for the series.  Everything that happened was leading up to a crisis near the end.  I was never really into the story until the last few pages.  I did like Nexus enough that I will try the next book when it is released.  It is fairly good Science Fiction just not great Science Fiction.

The Traitor by Grace Burrowes - Leave it to Burrowes to take the man who was the villain in The Captive and make him the hero in The Traitor.  Sebastian St. Clair is part English and part French.  He was in France when the war happened and he served in the French army.  Captured English soldiers were delivered to him and he used his skills as a interrogator to learn their secrets.  The war is ended and he is back in England where the men he held captive are trying to kill him.  I like the story but did not really warm to Sebastian as much as to Millicent Danforth, his love interest.  A nice story but not as heart warming as some of Burrowes other novels.

It's in His Kiss by Jill Shalvis - It's in His Kiss is the 10th book in
the Lucky Harbor series and it is another winner.  This is the first of a new trilogy with three very hot guys.  First up is Sam Brody, a very self-contained, self-made guy who thinks he is happiest when he is alone.  That changes when Becca Thorpe arrives in his life and on his dock.  Both are strong characters who are working through things in their past. They are a wonderful couple.  Their journey to a HEA is full of fun, heartbreak, and romance.  While Sam is part one of this trilogy his two partners, Tanner and Cole look like both are ready for their own story.

Mercy (Beartooth Montana #5) by B.J. Daniels – I love B.J. Daniel's suspense novels and with Mercy I think she outdid herself. I got shivers reading it and even though I though I knew the guilty party Daniels has been know plant false clues and fool me. Rourke Kincaid is a new character in the series. He comes to Beartooth from Seattle looking for a serial killer and he thinks Callie Westfield is involved in some way. He is attracted to Callie making his job much harder. Look for high degrees of tension as the past comes back to influence the present. There are visits with characters from the previous Beartooth books. Look for new information about characters and events to be revealed sometimes answering question and sometimes pointing to more mystery and suspense.

again one of the commitment shy cowboys in Rust Creek Falls bites the dust.  This time it is Caleb Dalton who does not want anything to do with having a family of his own.  That is until he meets eight-year old Lily and her adoptive mom, Mallory Franklin.  Lily just knows that Caleb and Mallory belong together.  Of course she is right but not before there are problems and possible heartbreak.  I am loving all the books in the Montana Mavericks: 20 years in the Saddle series.  There are still plenty of single men up for grabs so I will be looking for the next bachelor to bite the dust.

I Want It That Way
by Ann Aguirre - I read As Long As You Love Me, book #2 in the
2B Trilogy first and loved it so I was excited to see I Want It That Way on Netgalley.  I briefly met Nadia and Ty in  book #2 so I already knew a little about both of them.  What I did not expect was my reaction to their story.  I was bored.  I just never really cared about either one of them.  It was not the writing.  Ann Aguirre turns out well-written stories.  It may have been the setting.  I am a long way from being a college student and I just did not identify with the lifestyle of today’s students.  It may also have been how much I loved Lauren and Rob’s story.  I finished the book but it took an effort not to just put it down.  If you like this type of book don’t let my disappointment keep you from giving the book a try.  It may be a story that you love.  And remember, while I did not like I Want It That Way I love As Long As you Love me and they are books in the same series.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Book Beginnings, The Friday 56, August 29, 2013

I'm linking up with Rose City Reader for Book Beginnings and Freda's Voice for Page 56.
 Check out the links above for the rules and for the posts of the participants each week. Pick the closest book on your book stack and join the fun.

The Beginning:


Page 56:

"How could they resist a house near a cemetery on Halloween?"

Do you know what a Dust Bunny is? If so you are a Jayne Castle (Jayne Ann Krentz) fan and you know you are on Harmony where she sets her SFR books.

The Hot Zone (Rainshadow #3, Harmony #11) is her new release. I got it in the mail on release day this week and showed a great amount of will power when I finished two other books I needed to review before I started The Hot Zone late last night. I am writing this early Thursday morning and I will have finished the book by the time I link this post tomorrow morning. So far I love it and don't expect that to change

Book Beginnings and The Friday 56

I'm linking up with Rose City Reader for Book Beginnings and Freda's Voice for Page 56.
 Check out the links above for the rules and for the posts of the participants each week. Pick the closest book on your book stack and join the fun.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Fool’s Assassin by Robin Hobb


From Goodreads:

Tom Badgerlock has been living peaceably in the manor house at Withywoods with his beloved wife Molly these many years, the estate a reward to his family for loyal service to the crown.

But behind the facade of respectable middle-age lies a turbulent and violent past. For Tom Badgerlock is actually FitzChivalry Farseer, bastard scion of the Farseer line, convicted user of Beast-magic, and assassin. A man who has risked much for his king and lost more…

On a shelf in his den sits a triptych carved in memory stone of a man, a wolf and a fool. Once, these three were inseparable friends: Fitz, Nighteyes and the Fool. But one is long dead, and one long-missing.

Then one Winterfest night a messenger arrives to seek out Fitz, but mysteriously disappears, leaving nothing but a blood-trail. What was the message? Who was the sender? And what has happened to the messenger?

Suddenly Fitz's violent old life erupts into the peace of his new world, and nothing and no one is safe.

This one will be short and sweet because I can’t say much without giving away too many spoilers. 

It was great seeing Fitz Chivalry Farseen and his life as Tom Badgerlock.  Years have passed since we last saw Fitz.  Now he is living a peaceful life with his wife Molly.  Most of the book is background and it moves at a very sedate pace.  I liked that as it let me reconnect to the world and the characters I had read about years ago.

This is the first book of a trilogy.  It is the set up for the next two books.  While most of the book brings the reader back into FitzChivalry’s world the last moves at a rapid pace, (small spoiler) gets rid of characters that were new and seemed to be central to the story and brings big trouble to Fitz.

I am looking forward to book two and seeing the direction Hobb will take the story.  Fans of Hobb’s will like Fool’s Assassin.  New readers may be a little lost but the book can stand alone. 

Harper Voyager published Fool’s Assassin by Robin Hobb in 2014.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature of the Breaking the Spine blog.  It's a great way to share information about forthcoming books with other readers.

I am waiting on Nalini Singh's latest Archangel's Shadows (Guild Hunter #7) due out in October.  I love the series and have this on pre-order already.

The Homecoming (Thunder Point #6) by Robyn Carr

Contemporary Romance

From Goodreads:

In a small town, reputation is everything. In her latest novel, #1 New York Times bestselling author Robyn Carr explores the burden placed on a young man returning home to face his mistakes—the first step in claiming the life he was meant to live ...

At the age of nineteen, Seth Sileski had everything. A superb athlete and scholar, handsome and popular, he was the pride of Thunder Point. Destined for greatness, he lost it all in a terrible accident that put an end to his professional football career when it had barely begun. The people in his hometown have never forgotten what might have been.

Seth has come to terms with the turns his life has taken. But now he's been presented with an opportunity to return home and show his father—and the people of Thunder Point—he's become a better, humbler version of his former self.

Winning over his father isn't the only challenge. Seth must also find a way to convince his childhood neighbor and best friend, Iris McKinley, to forgive him for breaking her heart. With his homecoming, will Seth be able to convince the town, his family and especially Iris that he's finally ready to be the man who will make them all proud?

I received a copy of The Homecoming from Netgalley and read it as soon as I got it.  I have no will power where Robyn Carr’s books are concerned.  Just like I often eat desert first as soon as I get one of her books I put all other books down and pick hers up.  I almost read it in one sitting and I loved the story.  Thunder Point continues to grow with new characters and the stories continue to be about people I would love to know. 

The Homecoming is a story about second chances.  For Seth Sileski it is a second chance in his hometown, with his father and most of all with Iris McKinley.  Seth has changed and is back in Thunder Point taking Mac’s place as the deputy assigned to the station there.  Thunder Point is not that large and Iris can’t help but run into Seth.  The problem - Iris is still nursing a hurt from high school when they were best friends.  Turns out Seth does not remember what happened and when he finds out he knows he has a long hard road before he is back in Iris’s good graces. 

I loved both characters and look forward to seeing them again in future books.  Having said that my only complaint about the series is how characters from previous books are not as visible.  Just like I love Seth and Iris I love the character from previous books and would like to see more of them as the series progresses.

Harlequin published The Homecomingby Robyn Carr in 2014.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Teaser Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:"
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book. 

The Teaser:

"If he had been a good man, he would never have come to the pack's notice all those years ago.  Never come to Dante's notice." 

From Betting on Julia (A Melville Sisters Novel) by Nina Croft.

What is the book about?  Here is what Goodreads says:

Small, blonde, bubbly, and with a penchant for all things pink, Julia Melville has always considered herself a nice girl – until she was attacked by a werewolf. Months later, and still in total denial, Julia spends the time between full moons fantasizing that her life is normal. And who could be better to help her with that than her new neighbor, handsome accountant, Sebastian Crane.

For two hundred years, Sebastian, a powerful warlock, has been possessed by a demon. Each day, his soul grows darker, and he knows that soon he will be beyond salvation. But the demon loves to gamble, and he’s made Bastian one final bet—get a good woman to say the words “I love you” and he’ll be free.

Julia wants a normal guy. Bastian needs a good woman. Maybe together they can find something far more valuable…redemption.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Musing Monday's, August 25, 2014

TC is in the sun musing about the chipmunk she sees out the window.
Hopefully that is all she does.  So far this month she has presented me
 with two chipmunks - one alive and one dead but both in my bedroom.
Musing Mondays asks you to muse about one of the following each week.Musing Mondays is sponsored by Should Be Reading.
• Describe one of your reading habits.
• Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).
• What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it! 
• Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying it.
• Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!
• Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books — let’s hear it, then!

I love contests and love to enter.  Since I started book blogging I have found a wealth of contests ever day.  Some are for books and some are for gift cards.  I haven't won any of the gift cards but I do win books.  Most are ebooks but some are paper.  I won a copy of Guarded, A Tidewater Novel by Mary Behre in a contest several weeks ago and on Saturday the book arrived in the mail.

I remember entering the contest because the premise caught my attention.  Shelley Morgan is a Veterinarian who can communicate with the animals she treats.  When animals at a local zoo start to disappear she asks Dev Jones to help her find out what is happening.

That is the heart of the mystery.  As if that is not enough there are missing men, a long lost sister, and the attraction between Shelley and Dev.  Oh!  There is also the fact that the other sister also has a talent.  She talks to ghosts.  So romance, mystery and a touch of the paranormal.  

Guarded is book two in the series but it works very well as a stand-alone.  While Shelley is reunited with one sister there is another one yet to be found.  Guarded was a fun book to read and as the author hoped when she held her contest I will be purchasing the other two books in the series.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Target (Vicky Peterwald #1) by Mike Shepherd

Science Fiction/ Space Opera/Military Science Fiction

From Goodreads:


Her Imperial Highness the Grand Duchess Victoria Maria Teresa Inez Smythe-Peterwald, daughter of wealth and power, was raised to do little except be attractive and marry well. Then everything changed—her brother, her father’s favorite and the heir apparent, was killed in battle by Lieutenant Kris Longknife, daughter of the Peterwald’s longtime enemies. Vicky vowed revenge, but her skill set was more suitable for seduction than assassination, and she failed. Angry and disappointed, her father decided she needed military training and forced her to join the Navy.

Now Ensign Vicky Peterwald is part of a whole new world, where use of her ample charms will not lead to advancement. But her father is the Emperor, and what he wants he gets. What he wants is for Vicky to learn to be efficiently ruthless and deadly.

Though the lessons are hard learned, Vicky masters them—with help from an unexpected source: Kris Longknife.

What you are seeing from Goodreads is back-story for Target.  Vicky has been a side character in the Kris Longknife stories for quite awhile.  She came into the forefront when she decided to kill Kris.  She failed and that sent her into the Greenfeld Navy and set up her own series.

Vicky has been a hard character to like.  She started as very shallow.  By the time we see her in Target she has started to embrace her time in the Greenfeld Navy.  She is back from the other side of the Galaxy and a defeat from a new alien species that wiped out all but one ship.   She was a target before she left, a target while she was gone and she is a target now that she is back.   Her stepmother will stop at nothing to see her dead.

Target follows Vicky as she tries to stay one step ahead of the people who are trying to kill her.  Target is an exciting trip filled with tension and danger.  Expect a trail of bodies left in Vicky’s wake.  Some that are killed while trying to get to Vicky and some that Vicky kills trying to stay alive.  That is the plus.   Vicky does know how to use her body and all of the graphic sex in the book was the minus for me.   Must of the book shows how Vicky is growing and changing and the sex just interrupts the flow of the story and shows Vicky in a less than positive way.

I had a hard time getting into the story at first but once it hooked me I did not want to put it down.  Target is a nice addition to the world Shepherd has built.  If you like the Kris Longknife books I think you will like the new Vicky Peterwald series.  Pick it up and give it a chance.

Ace published Target by Mike Shepherd in 2014.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Stacking the Shelves, August 23, 2014

Books Stacked on My Shelves

Only one review book this week and five used books from one of my local non-profit stores.


Kinsmans Oath by Susan Krinard
Shadowlight by Lynn Viehl
The Maverick's Christmas Baby by Victoria Pade
Kitty Goes to Washington by Carrie Vaughn
Demon's Kiss by Maggie Shayne

For Review:

The Fortress in Orion by Mike Resnick