Baby Love

Posted by Chantal | 1:59 p.m. | , , | 13 comments »

Baby Love by Catherine Anderson
Why I read this: The back cover blurb sounded good.

Penniless, desperate and determined, Maggie Stanley grabs her small baby and runs into the snowy Idaho night, fleeing a dangerous, hurtful life. Now, in her loneliest, blackest hour, a handsome, down-and-out stranger's compassion shines forth like a torch in the darkness, offering her the warmth and comfort she has always longed for but has never known. But though tenderness lives buried deep in Rafe Kendrick's heart and though Maggie sees a soul wounded like her own in the depths of his startlingly beautiful eyes she knows she must never, ever trust any man again.

Rafe, however, is more than he seems—an enigmatic man of secrets who could give Maggie the moon and stars, had he not solemnly vowed to spend the rest of his life alone. But sometimes, without warning, love can transform a cold, pitiless world into paradise. And a man who has lost nearly everything, a woman who has forgotten how to dream, and the helpless child who needs them both can truly become that most wondrous of creations: a family.

Rafe, the hero of this book, is going into my top 10 Best Heroes list. Rich, charming, loves kids, a protector, good looking, good in bed, etc. You name, Rafe has got it.

Baby Love captivated me from the very first page. The entire time I was reading it I didn't want to put it down.

I'll admit to the fact that the book is cliche in the sense that it is a rich man with a nice family who saves the poor, single mother and loves her baby right from the get-go. The over all scenario that brought the couple together is not one that I relate to or even believe could happen this day and age, however, the way it is written makes me believe it.

Besides the villain, there is a cast of wonderful characters that I fell in love with the instant I read them.

B+ for Catherine Anderson's Baby Love.

Lover Avenged

Posted by Chantal | 3:52 p.m. | , , , | 8 comments »

Lover Avenged by J. R. Ward
Why I read this: Yes, WHY!? I gave up on the series, but a dear friend sent me the book. For what she spent on the hard cover copy and shipping costs, I owed it to her to give it a try.

Caldwell, NY, has long been the battleground for the battleground for the vampires and their enemies, the Lessening Society. It’s also where Rehvenge has staked out his turf as a drug lord and notorious nightclub that caters to the rich and heavily armed. His shadowy reputation is exactly why he’s approached to kill Wrath, the Blind King, and leader of the Brotherhood. Rehvenge has always kept his distance from the Brotherhood, even though his sister is married to a member. Because he’s a sympath, his identity is a deadly secret- the revelation of which will result in his banishment to a colony for sociopaths. And as plots within and outside the Brotherhood take their toll against Rehvenge, he turns to the only source of light in a darkening world- Elhena, a vampire untouched by the corruption that has its hold on him- and the only thing standing between him and eternal destruction.

This will be short and sweet because I don't want to waste any more of my reading or reviewing time on this series than I have to.

The brothers still dress in leather, they still wear shit kickers, and they still have a stupid vocabulary of words.
The Lessers continue to bore me.
Ward is so busy flipping back and forth from storyline A to story line B to story line C to Storyline D, etc, that there is not near enough time for me to become invested in the supposed h/h.

This series used to excite me. It used to make me happy to follow the brothers and watch them fall in love.
Ward's odd story lines and inability to keep my attention makes this a DNF. I don't care what happens to anyone in this series any more.

Dead and Gone review

Posted by Chantal | 10:39 p.m. | , , | 7 comments »

Dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris
Why I read this: It's Sookie, baby!

Except for Sookie Stackhouse, folks in Bon Temps, Louisiana, know little about vamps -- and nothing about weres.
Until now. The weres and shifters have finally decided to reveal their existence to the ordinary world. At first all goes well. Then the mutilated body of a were-panther is found near the bar where Sookie works -- and she feels compelled to discover who, human or otherwise, did it.
But there's a far greater danger threatening Bon Temps. A race of unhuman beings -- older, more powerful, and more secretive than vampires or werewolves -- is preparing for war. And Sookie finds herself an all-too human pawn in their battle.

I'll start by linking you to the review of the last Sookie Book I wrote. Just like it was for me then, it will be hard for me now to write a review without giving away spoilers. I'll black any out so that it isn't ruined for those who want to find out key things on their own.

Just like other Sookie fans, I started to watch True Blood last year. I liked the first few episodes, but it soon got on my nerves. Tara and Sookie were both so wrong that I couldn't get past it. The plot changes were so off course that I didn't even feel like I was watching something that was created in the authors mind. The only reason I continues on with the series is because my friend's husband had a recurring role on True Blood, and I always like to watch any show that he is on.

A big fear I had was that the True Blood would ruin the books for me. I was convinced that I would be picturing Anna Paquin (ugh!) while I was reading. That would have been bad. No way would I have been able to read even one page.

Ah, but Charlaine Harris is a fantastical author who truly knows her stuff. The sheer wrongness of True Blood wasn't a blimp on my radar screen while reading the book. Yay!

As always, Sookie was a strong heroine who didn't allow herself to be pushed around, but at the same time knew when to back down from any type of situation where she could get herself hurt.

The dynamics between Eric and Sookie are sheer fireworks. I enjoy Eric and I am pleased with any scene that he is a part of. My only complaint is that Sookie's relationship with Eric is starting to feel too much like the one between Anita Blake and Jean-Claude. (Laurel K Hamilton) Sookie isn't sure if what she feels is real or if it has to do with the blood exchanges, so she is reserved with her feelings for him. That is near to how things were with Anita and Jean-Claude, except Anita didn't know if it was real or because she was his servant.
It's subtle, but still made me aware enough to think of the other series (which I stopped reading, by the way)

All the usual characters play a role in one form or another, and poor Sookie is betrayed by someone she has known for a very long time. Readers wont be as surprised as Sookie was, though.

Dead and Gone was awesome. It was perfect except for the LKH reminder. For that, I'm going with an A- rather than the A+ I wanted to give it. Still pretty damn good, though, if you ask me :)

And because I have to tell someone, I'm going to post some major spoilers that I can't wait to start chatting about. *Highlight with your mouse to read spoilers)

Eric and Sookie are MARRIED!! Okay, not married the way you or I are married, but in Vampire society she is married to Eric and belongs to him and only him. Oh yeah!

Bill express his love for Sookie and nearly dies trying to protect her. There were a few pages where I thought he really had died. That was sad for me because I had started to forgive him for the shitty thing he did to Sookie. I'm relived he is not dead. Well, not dead dead. LOL.

Two deaths. One was Crystal. Meh. I hated her anyway. The other... Claudine! And she was pregnant. I was not expecting that at all.

One last thing is that I think we have seen the last of Sookie's great grandfather. Pity. I liked him. He didn't leave without telling her that he (he, as in Bill or Eric) really does love her. She didn't know which man Niall was talking about. I hope Sookie figures it out in the next book. I hope it's Eric.

That's it. That's all I wanted to spill.

Charming the Highlander by Janet Chapman
Why I read this: The back cover blurb sounded good.

When a plane crash strands brilliant scientist Grace Sutter on an icy mountaintop in Maine, she finds herself alone in the wilderness with the only other surviving passenger -- Greylen MacKeage,a sexy, medieval warrior who's been tossed through time to find the woman he's destined to love. Forced together to survive the harsh, wintry landscape, neither expects the fierce passion that flares between them. But Grace is not used to letting her heart take control, and Greylen will settle for nothing less than her heart's surrender....

There were a few things that had me excited to read this; highlander, plane crash, time travel.
I'm disappointed. That blurb is much too misleading.

I was wanting and expecting something similar to Linda Howard's Up Close and Dangerous, but with a highlander twist.
It wasn't even close.

Only two or so chapters covered the survival aftermath of the plane crash, so there goes the plot as described on the back cover that I was wanting to read.

Since I enjoyed a the other Janet Chapman books that I have read I figured I'd just read on. Even though it wasn't the story I was lead to believe, it could still turn out to be a good book, right? Sadly it didn't turn into a good read.

The story was all over the place. Heroine is to give her nephew to his father, but she doesn't want to (even thought she made a promise to her now dead sister) she lies about who the baby belongs to. There is a weird kidnapping plot that is inserted over half way in that doesn't fit the book at all. The heroine trying to help both her Hero and her sister's baby daddy, but there is resistance on both sides. None of it fit. It could have, though. But as it was, it felt like a bunch of different stories meshed into one.

DNF on page 272, however, I did jump to the end to skim the last few pages.

I'm not giving up on this author. I have the next few books in the series, which I do plan to read.

April '09 reads

Posted by Chantal | 8:25 a.m. | 8 comments »

Hello, blogger land.
I did a hella good amount of reading this month. Bam-bam-bam, one right after the other. It feels nice to have been able to do that again after so long. Twenty-one books! :)

There were a few bombs, (Sorority Girl, beging the worst.) Some average reads, and a few amazing ones, (Manhunting, Butterfly Tattoo) so it was quality as much as quantity, which is good.

1) Too Far Gone by Marliss Melton
2) Sorority Girl by Cheryl Dragon
3) Fantasy Lover by Sherrilyn Kenyon
4) Drop Dead Gorgeous by Linda Howard
5) Heart of Fire by Linda Howard
6) Naughty Housewives by Elizabeth Scott
7) Nauti Intentions by Lora Leigh
8) Plum Lucky by Janet Evanovich
9) Her Notorious Viscount by Jenna Peterson
10) Fire of Winter by Johanna Lindsey
11) Secret Submission by Diana Hunter (re-read)
12) Full Moon Rising by Keri Arthur
13) To Wed a Highlander by Michele Sinclair
14) Heaven, Texas by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
15) Twin Fantasies by Opal Carew
16) Butterfly Tattoo by Dierdre Knight
17) Heart of a warrior by Johanna Lindsey
18) Submission Revealed by Diana Hunter (re-read)
19) Manhunting by Jennifer Crusie
20) Star Quality by various authors (anthology)
21) Tempt me Twice by Eden Bradley

A little note to let you know that my eBookwise is still in working order after that fall which caused it to go into a coma for an entire day. Whew. My Dh saved my whole year being able to fix it.

For Nath's re-read challenge this month I decided to re read two of my favourite BDSM books.
Secret Submission and its sequel Submission Revealed by Diana Hunter.

The reason I decided on these two was because there are many books of this genre, but very few of them delve into the real emotions and physical happening of this topic. Anytime I read a Diana Hunter book I always feel like I am reading the real thing. It doesn't matter to me whether or not an author has personal experiences with it, but when I read these types of books, I expect it to sound valid and real. With this author it does. Every time.

When Phillip asks Sarah if she is a compliant sort of woman who will do anything he asks of her, she plays along, wanting a bedroom romp that will quiet the urges within her.

But Phillip has much more than a "bedroom romp" in mind. As he introduces Sarah to the world of bondage and submission, she discovers a need to be dominated. Phillip invites her to explore her sexuality each weekend at his cottage - as his slave.

The question is: how willing is she to give up her hard-earned independence? Even to a man so meltingly handsome as Phillip Townsend...

Secret Submission brings us through the courtship of Phillip and Sarah. Phillip is a Dom who has been searching for the perfect woman who will be his submissive partner both in and out of the bedroom. As it states in the blurb, Sarah first thinks that Phillip is only interested in playing the Dom/sub games and goes along with it for fun.

Phillips made mistakes in the past with women, so he made sure that Sarah knew what he was looking for. It's a bit of a shocking and arousing wake up call when she finds out that he wants the games to go beyond the bedroom. With his help she is eager to learn more about herself and her sexuality.

This is a good book for anyone who isn't too sure about the genre or lifestyle and want to learn about it. It's more than an erotica book with good sex. It's an accurate portrayal of how many true life BDSM relationships start and evolve.

Sarah and Phillip are planning their marriage and exploring the boundaries of an extreme Dominant-slave relationship. As Phillip opens the doors to Sarah's submission, she discovers places she had buried deep within herself. Under his guidance, she will become the woman she has always yearned to be.

But chaos ensues when Sarah's secret submissiveness is revealed to the world, and Phillip's dominance is considered abuse when the law gets involved with their sex lives. Their happiness is threatened, their lives put on hold as they are forced to defend their most private actions and the sex games they play.

Secret Revealed should be an award winning book, IMO. It's a continuation from Secret Submission, and the blurb is correct. Phillip and Sarah are planning their wedding. Sarah has some questions and concerns about their roles as Dom/sub, which are questions that anyone would have for any real life 24/7 Dom/sub couple that they know.

Sarah ends up getting into a car accident and gets pretty banged up. On her body, her buttocks and breasts to be exact, the doctors notice some marks that could not have occurred in the accident. It's soon revealed that Phillip caused the marks, and he is arrested for domestic abuse. The couple is first forced apart by the law, and then they have to defend their actions against friends and society.

I had picked Submission Revealed as one of my best books of the year when I first read it, plus I previously reviewed it on my blog here.
I'm going to copy/past a little bit of what I said in my original review, because I still feel the same way, it sums up my feelings perfectly...

Submission Revealed is an emotional read and had me getting angry, not at the book, but at how the couple was treated, because authorities refused to believe/accept that what was going on in their bedroom was consensual.

They couldn't understand how a woman would not only ask to be spanked with a cane, but also crave it and orgasm from it. Sarah got up on a witness stand and told this to a judge and jury. I can't imagine having to do that.

Just because you do not understand something, it does not mean that it's wrong. Sure, the majority of the world is into monogamous, vanilla, straight sex, so I understand the hesitation when it come to a couple who call each other Master and slave. Still, though, a lot more acceptance would do a world of good.

This was a really enjoyable read. I didn't want to put it down. Even if there are no more books based solely on them, I hope to get a glimpse of Phillip and Sarah in future books.

So those are my re-read books for the month of April. Both get an A. I'm positive that I will read them again and again.

Lora Leigh 3-some review

Posted by Chantal | 9:02 p.m. | 2 comments »

There is a f/f/f review posted over at Breezing Through.

Ohh, did you think it was a girl on girl on girl menage review?
Well, it isn't. Hehe.

It IS Lora Leigh, and it is a 3-way... A 3-way review, though.
Ames and I invited Kris to review Nauti Intentions with us.

Since he saw Janey Mackay taking a dip in her bikini, Major Alex Jansen has had to quell the fire she ignites in him. Even touching her would mean death at the hands of the Mackay men. Until now, the girl of his dreams—and fantasies—has lived in a vacuum of affection, shying away from the danger she thinks men represent. Alex sets out to prove her wrong, with his torturously slow caresses.Everyone thinks Janey’s safe now, with her abusers dead. But when someone starts leaving spine chilling notes, Alex won’t rest until she’s completely safe. And completely his—body and soul…

The life and death of an eBookwise

Posted by Chantal | 12:58 p.m. | 9 comments »

Two years ago I bought my eBookwise, it was a gift to myself because as much as I enjoy e-books, I'm not fond of reading off of my computer.

Holly probably remembers the day my eBookwise arrived. I was so excited to get started that I didn't even read the instructions first. Holly talked me through it, step by step. She didn't even laugh too hard when I complained that it was hard using my fingers when I named and registered it and that I wished there was a special pen that I could use. She calmly informed me that there is indeed a pen and that I can find it slid into it's spot on the top right hand corner of my device.

My lovely eBookwise has been everywhere with me. It's awesome being able to cart around as many books as I want in one handy little device.

Sadly, I left my eBookwise unattended yesterday and when I went back to retrieve it it was not left in the spot I had put it. I said, "Who touched my eBookwise?" My youngest child said "Cotton did."

Oh, really? Cotton is one of our dogs. A tiny Maltese who can do a few tricks, but moving an eBookwise from the headboard to the dresser is not one of them.

Bottom line is that the eBookwise was dropped to the floor and would no longer turn on.
Have you ever lost your wallet, or have one of your kids go missing while out in public?
No joke when I say I felt that kind of panic.
I was also mad. At the little one for touching it and at myself for leaving it where he could get it.

I waited all day for Dh to come home and see if he could fix it.

He plugged in the charger to make sure the battery just wasn't dead. I knew it was fully charged, but Dh still had to make sure.

Then he started to take it apart.

Here is the inside of the back piece. That's the battery.

This is the over half-- the motherboard that is underneath the LCD screen.

Somehow there were some crumbs, so Dh cleaned it. He also looked closely for anything that may have moved around or something during the drop. He found what was broken, he fixed it, put it back together!!


For real, I was so sure that I would have buy a new one. I even looked on eBay to try and find a used one. Huge relief. Phew.

To Wed a Highlander by Michele Sinclair
Why I read this: The first book which I reviewed here was one of my best reads of that year. I was excited and thrilled to get my hands on this next McTiernay brothers book.

To Wed a Highlander, focuses on the second McTiernay brother, Colin, who is forced to marry his brazen, impetuous sister-in-law, Makenna, in order to protect the clan of his beloved, gentle dead wife.

Pride and unfamiliar desire guides much of their initial interactions as each wrestle with unexpected and intense feelings for the other. Conor and Laurel (from The Highlander's Bride) come back in this story and add to the lively interplay plaguing the Dunstan keep as Colin and Makenna discover the joy of their hidden, unknown passions.

This has been one of those books where I dread the ending because I simply do not want the book to end. Colin is as wonderful as his brother was in the first book and Makenna is a heroine who I would love to be friends with in real life.

Colin is the typical alpha medieval highlander male who goes to great lengths to make sure his wife and clan are protected. He is big, strong and has a heart of gold.

The reason I like Makenna so much is because she started off as terrible 'lady of the keep'. She did not know how to manage the household duties of being Lairds. Growing up, she was always practicing her sword play and had no want or will to learn how to cook, clean, manage, etc. When she comes to realize how much her non-actions are effecting everyone withing the castle, she swallows her pride and asks for help.

One of the biggest conflicts in the story is that the clan does not like the new laird. Not because he is mean or uncaring, but because there is a clash of customs when it comes to highlanders VS lowlanders. The clan does not want A McTiernay to lead them, so they rebel against the new Laird.

Ah, but when when the clan is attacked who do you think they run to for help? To their Laird, of course.

My only complaint was the head hopping, however, the story was good enough to look over it most of the time. I wont pretend that it didn't bother me, though.

B+. A sweet love story mixed in with an interesting plot. It was a real treat to see Connor and Laurel come back in this story, and I look forward to the many more McTiernay brothers books to come.

Update on Evanovich tour..

Posted by Chantal | 11:22 a.m. | 6 comments »

We have the tour date.

Wednesday, June 24
Chapters Queensway
1950 The Queensway
Etobicoke, Ontario
6 p.m. signing

*Happy Dance*

Any other Canadians going to be there?