Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Guest Review by Rameau - Sand & Water by Shae Connor

Sand & WaterSand & Water by Shae Connor

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Review edited as per request of the publisher on February 29th. See the comments on Goodreads for more.

I admit I'd be heartbroken if I ever found out this was one of those plagiarised works.

Because I really, really liked this story.

I liked the sweetness of it. I liked it even when it bordered eye-roll-inducing sappiness.

I liked how everything was so delightfully normal. I liked how family and friends didn't just disappear when the crushing started.

I liked how John never forgot to put his daughter first. I liked how Bryan loved that about John.

I liked that there was a happy hetero-relationship model in the book too.

I liked that no one was vilified to make the gays look better.

Monday, February 27, 2012

H2O by Austin Boyd and Brandon Hollingsworth

H2O the NovelH2O the Novel by Austin Boyd

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book is very different from my usual fare but I was approached by one of the authors to do a review.

Kate Pepper is a successful business woman, working for a company that provides in-seat video screens with underlying apps for airlines. She is also carrying on an affair with her boss.

The book opens with Kate preparing a Sushi dinner for people her boss has invited. As she puts her hands under water, she is hit with the first of many visions and blacks out. Her boss/lover is not very concerned with her well-being and more worried about the dinner not getting done. His abysmal treatment of Kate seems to be common and it's very easy to dislike him.

Soon, every time Kate touches water, whether it be rain, tears or the shower, she has more visions. Someone or something is sending her messages.

As she struggles to control what is happening to her, she loses her boyfriend (if one could call him that, heartless and abusive as he is), her job and slowly but surely her grip on her sanity.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Jailbird by Heather Huffman

JailbirdJailbird by Heather Huffman

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

From the blurb:

Neena Allen's life didn't exactly follow the path she'd anticipated. She couldn't have seen the twists and turns that would lead her to wander the woods, presumed dead by the prison guards. When Neena starts a new life in a little Arkansas town, she finds a contentment she never dreamed possible. The thing about skeletons in your closet is they always come back to haunt you.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Twin-Bred by Karen A. Wyle

Twin-BredTwin-Bred by Karen A. Wyle

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

From the blurb:

Can interspecies diplomacy begin in the womb?

In Twin-Bred, the human colony on Tofarn and the indigenous Tofa have great difficulty communicating with and basically comprehending each other. Scientist Mara Cadell, who lost a fraternal twin in utero, proposes that host mothers of either or both species carry twins, one human and one Tofa, in the hope that the bond between twins can bridge the gap between species. Mara has secretly kept her own twin, Levi, alive in her mind as a companion and collaborator.

Mara succeeds in obtaining governmental backing for her project – but both the human and Tofa establishments have their own agendas. Mara must shepherd the Twin-Bred through dangers she anticipated and others that even the canny Levi could not foresee. Will the Twin-Bred bring peace, war, or something else entirely?

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Regan Walsh, author of Whisper Cape, has stopped by for her blog tour!!!

Welcome, Regan Walsh, and thanks for stopping by! I'm excited to be part of your blog tour.

My question for you is: What inspired you to write Whisper Cape? 

Regan: Thank you, Sandra, for having me here at your blog. I’ve given this question a lot of thought, because there are many things that have inspired this story. Here are just a few of them.

I’m sure you’ve all seen the cover of WhisperCape.

The background on the cover was taken at The Little River Inn in Mendocino, California.
My husband and I were there celebrating our wedding anniversary. I have to say it was the most romantic place I’ve ever, ever been—aside from Bora Bora, where we went for our honeymoon. If you’ve never been there, I highly recommend it.  

I took the picture after walking out to the edge of the cliff and noticed that little figure formed by the two rocks just on the other side of the arch. It reminded me of an angel or a ghost, and my imagination began developing scenarios almost immediately.

At that time, I had already written my first draft of Whisper Cape, but after seeing the angel formed by the rocks, I had the picture enlarged and framed, which now hangs on the wall above my desk, and with it there, I rewrote the entire manuscript.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Blog Tour Announcement - Regan Walsh is stopping by!

I'm participating in my first blog tour!!

On February 21, Regan Walsh, author of Whisper Cape, is stopping by with a post about what inspired her to write her book.


Saturday, February 11, 2012

Nightmare at Emerald High by Joana James

Nightmare at Emerald HighNightmare at Emerald High by Joana James

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

From the blurb:

Malcolm Drake is one year away from the end of high school when a tantalizing scholarship offer comes his way. Malcolm and several other classmates eagerly join a program called Alternative Science that promises to open their minds to new ways of thinking and of course, help them win that scholarship. Little do they know that this program would change their lives forever. The class is riddled with eerie séances, encounters with spirit guides and a slow desensitization of the teens towards everything evil until they become completely entangled in the world of the occult.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

If Walls Could Talk by Lucy Worsley

If Walls Could Talk: An Intimate History of the HomeIf Walls Could Talk: An Intimate History of the Home by Lucy Worsley

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley.

From the blurb:

Why did the flushing toilet take two centuries to catch on? Why did Samuel Pepys never give his mistresses an orgasm? Why did medieval people sleep sitting up? When were the two 'dirty centuries'? Why did gas lighting cause Victorian ladies to faint? Why, for centuries, did people fear fruit? All these questions will be answered in this juicy, smelly and truly intimate history of home life. Lucy Worsley takes us through the bedroom, bathroom, living room and kitchen, covering the architectural history of each room, but concentrating on what people actually did in bed, in the bath, at the table, and at the stove. From sauce-stirring to breast-feeding, teeth-cleaning to masturbation, getting dressed to getting married, this book will make you see your home with new eyes.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Blue Notes by Shira Anthony

Blue NotesBlue Notes by Shira Anthony

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

From the blurb:

Blame it on jet lag. Jason Greene thought he had everything: a dream job as a partner in a large Philadelphia law firm, a beautiful fiancée, and more money than he could ever hope to spend. Then he finds his future wife in bed with another man, and he’s forced to rethink his life and his choices. On a moment’s notice, he runs away to Paris, hoping to make peace with his life.

But Jason’s leave of absence becomes a true journey of the heart when he meets Jules, a struggling jazz violinist with his own cross to bear. In the City of Love, it doesn’t take them long to fall into bed, but as they’re both about to learn, they can’t run from the past. Sooner or later, they’ll have to face the music.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Under Her Brass Corset by Brenda Williamson

Under Her Brass CorsetUnder Her Brass Corset by Brenda Williamson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book had me in stitches and rolling my eyes. There were parts I loved and parts that were ridiculous.

It's a romance-slash-suspense, first and foremost, with a dash of supernatural and steampunk added for good measure, a wizard trapped under a spell, sea creatures from the deep and a couple of pirates, too. And a Crystal Compass that can lead the bearer to find... well, I'll leave you to find that out.

From the blurb:

Since the loss of her father, Abigail Thatch's life has been in turmoil. Her social status is in shambles, her finances depleted, and she's on the verge of losing her beloved home. But everything changes when she meets the dashing flying machine captain Jasper Blackthorn. Not only does he introduce her to a world she thought only existed in myth and legend, he awakens sensual feelings deep within her...

Jasper may be immortal, but he hasn't truly lived in years. Having secretly watched over Abigail as a favor to her notorious grandfather, he can't resist arranging a "chance" meeting with the beauty. But he has an ulterior motive: to retrieve the mystical Crystal Compass hidden in her house before it falls into the wrong hands. He never imagines he'll be tempted to love again...

When Abigail learns the truth, she and Jasper embark on a journey that will change both of their lives and possibly the world...

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