Tuesday, October 31, 2006

How much is too much?

Happy Halloween everyone!

Nope, I don't have any nice pics... but if you're looking for some, there's Mailyn and Zeek. If you follow Zeek's link to her BF's blog where he has posted Halloween pics, you might want to avoid that last picture. *shudder* I hope to erase that image from my mind as fast as possible! :P

Still haven't finished anything... I'm currently reading No Rest for the Wicked (trying to complete my TBR challenge... I don't even remember if I've sign up or not :P) so, so, so... oh yeah, I wanted to ask: How much is too much?

What am I talking about right? So we all know that one of the most popular romance author is Nora Roberts. Come on, I know a lot of you are closet fans :) I like her work, although I have to admit that her last few books, except for Angel's Fall, have been disappointing. I mean, her Garden trilogy - I didn't even bother to finish reading it, and her new paranormal trilogy is, well... cliché and quite typical. I mean, half-way of the first novel and you know what's going to be the pairing... cos it soo obvious. I must admit that it's well-written, but I don't see anything special about it and I don't understand why so many praise it... maybe I'm being dense? But seriously, I've seen more original plot, her characters are recycled, the appearance of Morrigan reminds me of the Key trilogy and as for action, yes there is a lot, but I've seen much more (hey, blame it on kung fu story... action-wise, you can't beat that)... so yeah, I'm quite unimpressed. I think that trilogy-wise, she should take a step back and focus on relationships rather than a quest, like the Chespeake trilogy with the Quinn brothers.

Anyway, aside from writing romance novels, Nora Roberts also writes the In Death series, a futuristic romance/mystery series, under the pen name of J.D. Robb. We all know that this series is hugely popular... More than 20 novels to the series and you still have tons of fans following it, me included. That's quite wow in my opinion. Anyway, Born in Death is coming out next week, but already, dedicated fans of the In Death series are talking and only talking about Innocent in Death which is coming out February 2007. There's already tons of spoilers about this series out and ARC are being sold on ebay... The last one was won at the insane price of... 400$. Yep, 400$ for an ARC...

So seriously, I'm wondering how much is too much? Let's do some quick maths:

400$ US = 448$ CDN
1 book = abt 10$
so with 448$, I can buy at least 40 books (tax = 6%)

Hmm, I mean, I've been willing to pay 25$ for a Jennifer Crusie out-of-print book (shipping included) in the past, but 400$ for an ARC? Euh, I don't think so... I'd rather wait for it to come out in February, even if this mean I'll die of curiosity, which by the way, I'm not. I guess what's intriguing ppl is that Roarke and Eve are having a marital crisis, but still... we all know that they'll still be together at the end of it, so why worry so much?

Sooo, what are you willing to pay for a book (not an ARC)?

My answer: Me, if it's a book that I can buy in the store, of course I don't want to pay full price. For an out-of-print book, probably as I did in the past 25-30$ and that would be my limit. (okay, perhaps 50$, but that's really, really it - and that would esp. be for vietnamese books because they're hard to find, so of course, they're expensive). ARC? Never for me, I'll just wait thank you.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Surprise, more books!

All right :) So I didn't do much reading this week-end... I've only re-read Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder (review in previous post :P)

since I obviously have no review, well I can only share with you my new books (yep, I've bought more books, but all before last Saturday). But before, I want to share with you the tv series I've been watching over the week-end... It's been a long time since I've seen such an entertaining "ancient" tv series. So here are the opening theme and the subtheme... I'm addicted to the subtheme. I find the song really good ;D

**EDIT April 1, 2012: The videos were expired and I couldn't find replacements, so I decided to take them down.

I also had a favorite couple in this series :D He's an assassin and she's on the good side... basically, they're enemies, but they love each other. I have to say tho that the series didn't focus on them and I think that they didn't have enough screen time T_T

Sad thing tho is that I didn't really like the costume design and hairstyles of this series... ah well, can't have it all I guess.

All right, onto the books now :D

UBS finds:

Prince of Swords/ Still Lake/ the Widow by Anne Stuart
Winterset by Candace Camp

Chapters/Indigo buy:

No Rest of the Wicked by Kresley Cole
The Ultimatum by Susan Kearney
Nine Lives by Sharon Sala
Lord Perfect by Loretta Chase
Doppelganger by Marie Brennan
Everything's coming up, Rosie by Kasey Micheals
Devil's Waltz / Cold as Ice by Anne Stuart

Online orders:

Born in Death by J.D. Robbs
Gifts of Love by Kay Hooper and Lisa Kleypas
Extreme Exposure by Pamela Clare
Billionaires Prefer Blondes by Suzanne Enoch

So that's it :D I have to say tho that I've been buying way too much books (esp. in the past two weeks)... so I'm officially taking a break ^^; well at least, until I find out whether or not that new Indigo has any opening promotions... if there are, I'll find something to buy (you have to take advantages of those promotional sales!) and if not, then well I'll continue to be on break :P

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Review: Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder

Morning everyone :D

So how are you all? It's so windy at the moment, it's really scary. Anyway, it's been a very quiet week-end so far on blogland... so to perk things up, here is my review of Magic Study (I know, I know... I was planning to post it earlier, but it didn't happen).

Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder: 5.5/5

Yep, you see it right :D It's m0re than a perfect grade :D i mean, I thought, why not?

After 14 years, Yelena is finally coming home to the Zaltana's clan. Although her parents are estatic, her older brother Leif is less than happy. Unfortunately for Yelena, her family reunion is short-lived as she has to go to the Keep in order to learn and control her magic with the 4th Master Magician, Irys. On her way to the Keep, Yelena is captured by Cahil Ixia - Ixia King's nephew (the one who used to rule Ixia and that was killed by Valek). Cahil wants to overtake Ixia and believes that Yelena is a spy. After Yelena proved her honesty, she starts her apprenticeship of magic... but soon, her life will be disturbed again as a rogue magician is taking souls to increase his powers and at the same time, an Ixia delegation is coming to Sitia and Valek is there in disguise although every Sitian would take his life. Life is never boring with Yelena...

So Magic Study is a very nice continuation of Poison Study and in my opinion, even surpasses Poison Study. In Poison Study, I thought that its weak point was the description of the setting, but in Magic Study, you can really see and imagine Sitia. The action is still present and very well-paced. In addition, I love the characters. Yelena remains the same (as in, she is not out of character)... she grows and mature and is still very clever... but she's human. She's not the perfect and tough heroine. Bad things happen to her and sometimes, she can get out of it by herself, other times, her friends come to the rescue. What I mean is that she's not Super Woman... which makes her realistic. Valek is still the same: handsome and dangerous, moves like a ghost and he can really be sweet :D Ari and Janco are back too (actually, I thought they were going with her to Sitia at first), not with a predominent role, but their presence is welcomed and in my opinion, necessary. I really like their friendship with Yelena. The new secondary characters are good (might be a bit cliché, but still) and makes the story even more appealing and interesting (esp. Moon Man, Leif and Kiki). Anyway, you get my point: the book is good, very good :D and I like the fact that there's a bit (just a tiny bit) more romance between Yelena and Valek.

I can't wait for Fire Study and I really hope that nothing bad happens to Yelena and Valek and that the author will continue her amazing story-telling.

ps - Ain't the cover pretty?!?

Thursday, October 26, 2006

My turn!!

Hello everyone,

So I got tagged by Mailyn to reveal 5 things I know are true. This is my first tag, isn't that exciting? Okay, maybe not... So here we go:

I buy too much books - ha, I know, it wasn't what you wanted to know right? Okay, here we go for real:

1. I like wearing glasses and I think I'm prettier with them or at least, look better.

2. I'm spoiled rotten - I don't have much worries in life and my parents take care of everything... I mean, I'm quite lucky, but at the same time, I feel quite guilty.

3. I don't like long hair on guys and so I don't understand Sherrilyn Kenyon's fetish. I mean, most of the time, it looks really unkept and dirty. I like it short or a tiny bit long and ruffled. I don't like chest hair either...

4. I'm not that confident in myself and I often feel invisible.

5. All right, this is the big revelation. If Kristie can say that she's missing sex and Mailyn is saying that she needs to get laid, then I don't have to be shy and I can say it... deep breath... I'm 23 y.o. and have never gone out, kissed or had sex with a guy. See now the need for romance in my life? I've always wanted kids before 30, but I don't think that'll be happening...

So you got it... there, 5 things I know that are true.

ps - I finished MAGIC Study :) Loved it... will have review tomorrow ;D

pps - oups, forgot to tag somebody. At this point, whoever hasn't been tagged, you're it!

Review: The Panther and the Pyramid by Bonnie Vanak and Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder

And now, what you've all been waiting for, the reviews :D Let's start with The Panther and the Pyramid and keep Poison Study for the dessert :D

The Panther and the Pyramid by Bonnie Vanak: N/A

Okay, I'll admit it, I didn't "read" the book, I skimmed through it. However, skimming through, I know what happens... but I've probably missed some details. Because I skimmed through the book, I don't want to give it a grade because it would be unfair. The only thing I'll say is that I thought the book was so-so and didn't love it as much as Kristie or Cindy (sorry!)

So what is the story? Basically, Graham Tristan grew up in Egypt after his parents were slaugthered during their trip. Kidnapped by a tribe, he was abused by two men, one Egyptian whom Graham killed later on in a ceremony to show he was a man, and a red-hair, green-eye Englishman who promised him he would save Graham. Graham has now returned to England where he has become Duke and live with his long-time lost brother, Kenneth (who also grew up in Egypt) and Kenneth's wife and daughter. Anyhow, Graham is having nightmares that featured the Englishman who raped him... Trying to forget about his nightmares, Graham decides that he must lose his virginity and goes to a brothel where he asked for a virgin. Enters Jillian Quigley, the daughter of a count or viscount who wants to lose her virginity so she would be ruined and wouldn't have to marry the man her father chose. In addition, with the money, she could escape to America where she could go to college and get a good education.

Few days after the act, Graham meets Jillian again at a ball - where he learns that Jillian is the daughter of THE Englishman. To set his revenge in motion, Graham decides to marry Jillian. So something, something happens... you know :P Anyway, finally, Graham receives news that his investments failed and that his family is almost ruined. In order to save the family's fortune, Graham can only think of one thing, a treasure hidden in Egypt. He has half of the map and Jillian's father, the other half... and story continues.

So as I said, I skimmed through the book :P The opening was pretty unusual and I was glad that the two characters got rid of the sex this early in the book. I thought that if they were going through a regular courtship, it would have taken forever. I find both characters okay - they're not annoying, but they didn't leave me with a strong impression. Graham is indeed tortured, he is scarred by the abuses, and his upbringing is quite different from any other English lord. Also, perhaps the ending was a bit too smooth? I mean, with everything that happened between Graham and Jillian, I expected a bit more angst... Aside from that, I don't have much to say about this book (sad, I know... and I call this a review?) I guess I had really great difficulty imagining everything that was described. Perhaps when i read the previous books, it'll be clearer in my head... but till then, that's it.

So what everyone's been waiting...

Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder : 4.75/5

Wow, this book was great. You know, I've been hearing so much about it... I think the first time was on Jennie's blog :) I was hearing so much good stuff about it that it scared me and that's why it took me so much time to decide reading it :D Definitively a keeper :D

You probably know the story by now, but it doesn't matter.

Growing up in an orphanage, Yelena was sentenced to death after killing the son of her benefactor, General Brazell - not without good reason. Now the day has arrived and she is given a choice: death by hanging or become the Commander's food taster. Yelena is no fool and the choice is easy. Then, her learning of poison starts. However, poisons are not the only thing Yelena has to worry about: a) Valek (the Commander's right hand man)'s imprevisible tests and b) Brazell's attempts on her life. In addition, Yelena discovers that she has magic power in a country where magic is forbidden and magicians are killed. Who is friend, who is foe and how can she escape?

I really liked this book. The telling was very smooth and although it was a first person point of view, it didn't bother me at all. I liked it when we went through the learning of the poisons, although it was too short to my taste and I liked it that her job wasn't limited as food taster. Yelena is bright and courageous, but she's human too. She has doubts, she fears, but she's calm. She can be in a good mood one moment and be down in the next. You know, she's not the fearless food taster who's like: I want to escape and that's my goal and unique goal. She gets attached to the others... anyway, she felt really real to me :D I liked Valek a lot... see, that's the kind of man who is obviously an alpha male, but he doesn't overshadow the woman. That was quite a nice change. Valek is smart, cunning and moves like an assassin :) Valek and Yelena together are a deadly combination :D I liked the ppl Yelena befriended with too, but for once, it seems that the story will focus only on the main couple. Okay, I'm running out of thing to praise LOL. Basically: I love it, everything - the characters, the plot, the writing - people love it and if you haven't read it, go find it! I'm going to read Fire Study tonight and tomorrow, while you're looking for it :D I'm actually glad that Fire Study is also getting good comments, because what's worst than having a good first book and the second is a flop? Nothing... that would be major disappointment.

I know, I know... if I love it so much, why only 4.75? Why not a perfect grade? One major reason and one minor. The major reason, I thought as a reader, I didn't get enough world-building information. This is fantasy... I know that they live in Ixia which is divided into Military Districts... The commander rules, everyone has a job and wears uniform... okay, I get that... but what about the setting: is it a desert? because I kept imagining somewhere very dry, a bit like in Kingdom of Heaven (with Orlando Bloom and Liam Neeson), but then, I was reminded that there was a forest... so you know, was the castle where they live more European or Middle East? My other reason, which is really, really, really minor and I know, you're going to laugh... is that the author, i think only twice (and in the same dialogue), used the word 'okay.' So what's the problem with it? Well 'okay' sounds way too modern for Poison Study. It was just out of blues, out of context and it jumped right at me... am I too picky? Perhaps, but still. you don't use 'okay' in regencies right? well same thing here... it shouldn't have been used. Oh, and one more thing... what is the mutation? But nonetheless, this is an AWESOMELY, FANTABULOUSLY GOOD BOOK!

ps - sorry, Blogger was having some trouble yesterday night. Luckily, I did save it in a word file!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Treasures finding

Hmmm, I'll start with a post of my finding at the bookfair. You'll be glad to know that I stay UNDER budget (37$)... but that's probably because I only did one tour. Usually, I look at all the books and pick up everything that catches my attention. Then, I do a second tour to see if perhaps i've missed something... and then, a third final one (maybe the volunteers put out new books, you just never know). Then, afterwards, I'll find a corner and start calculating how much everything is going to cost me... The books were cheap, ranging from 1 to 3 $ (even hardcovers!).

Although I found many books, I 'd wished the place was better-lit and I hope that the books were better categorized. I mean, I went into the Romance section and there was what? Perhaps a long table worth of books and most of them Harlequins... Then I went upstairs and found almost all my books in the New books section... you can guess that romance was mixed with fantasy, mystery, classics and so on.

So here is what I got:

New books

Again the Magic by Lisa Kleypas
Somewhere I'll find you by Lisa Kleypas
Sin and Sensibility by Suzanne Enoch
Killer Takes All by Elizabeth Spindler
Stuck in Shangri-La by Kasey Micheals
the Wizard's Ward by Deborah Hale
The Secret Ingredient by Jane Heller
Caroline Isle by Jude Deveraux
The Stanislaski Brothers by Nora Roberts
The Stanislaski Sisters by Nora Roberts
The Night Drifter by Susan Carroll
Whippoorwill by Sharon Sala
The Return by Dinah Mccall
The Impossible Bride by Allie Shaw
Home Before Dark by Susan Wiggs
Hidden Honor by Anne Stuart
My Guardian Angel - anthology

Books that I've already read

Naked Heart by Jacqueline Briskin (I haven't read it in English yet and don't have a copy)
Touching Evil and Stealing Shadows by Kay Hooper - I already have both, but my copies are falling apart and those were in good conditions.

So that's my finds... a tiny, tiny bit disappointed that there weren't more of Anne Stuart or Loretta Chase ^^; but hey, it's used books. Not my choice, depends on the donators right? I've hunted down a lot of books this week, but it's not over yet. I think I'm going to go to the UBS tomorrow (couldn't go today as they are closed on Wednesday) and see if I really can't find Anne Stuart or Loretta Chase's books. Aside from that, I'll do a very very quick trip to Indigo/Chapters and get Cold As Ice and No Rest for the Wicked (at least). And then, it should be it for awhile... Well okay, I fess up, I might want to pre-order the next In Death by J.D. Robbs (I think it's coming out in November)... maybe I should pre-order my November books too. See I'm tired of always going into downtown to buy my books... but then, the new Indigo is opening soon (I'm hoping there's some discount for the opening day)... Ah well, we'll see how my book buying turns out to be after this week :)

Happy Birthday to Dance Chica!

Happy Birthday Dancechica!

Since this is the first birthday of a fellow blogger that I know, I just want celebrate it :D So Happy B-day Dancechica :D Hope that your wishes become reality (wish for a hotty!) and I wish you to get out of your reading slump by receiving tons and tons of interesting books :D

In other news, it's McGill Bookfair today... basically, it's a charity event where they receive used books during the whole year and sell them during 2 days :D I've been waiting for it ever since the week begun ^^; My game plan today is a) get any books present of the following authors: Suzanne Enoch, Anne Stuart, Sabrina Jeffries, Loretta Chase, Lucy Monroe, Madeline Hunter (anymore I should add?) and b) get any books that sound good :D and c) stay under budget (about 50$). Oh and all in around an hour, because I have to go pick up my sister :D Wish me good luck.

I've also be reading... well actually, I skimmed through The Panther and the Pyramid and yesterday, finally, I sat down and read Poison Study. Wow, I can't wait to read Magic Study (ha, I have it :D it's in my bag!) and can't wait for Fire Study to come out! let's hope they meant January 2007. So reviews for both tonight!

In other news, I DIDN'T HAVE a fight with my dad, which is good :D See, it seems that I had a bout of sleepwalking on Monday night and went into my sis room at 2am in the morning, asking: "Mom, is it time to wake up?" So I laughed, my mom laughed, my sister grunted, cos of course, I woke her up... but my dad worried. Then, he told my sis to tell me to read less. (see, my dad thinks that we'll listen more if it comes from one another instead of from them)... He thinks that I read too much and I'm up in my own world and that's why I sleepwalked. So when my sis told me this, I was totally "NOT TRUE" and well, I was pissed, because what else can I do other than read when I get home? Watch TV? How is that better? and by the way, I usually watch tv and read at the same time... So I was prepping for a fight, with my dad sternly telling me to STOP reading or read LESS. My only really valid argument being: Maybe my sis dreamt it all up. Yeah... In the end, he only look into my room after supper on his way to his room, and said laughingly that I shouldn't read too much. Okay, that's good. I'm going to shut up :D The sad thing is we both know I'm not going to stop reading, so I'm glad he didn't turn it into a fight. Cos I hate it when my dad's angry at me, makes me feel really guilty.

All right, so I'll write up the reviews tonight and let you know what treasure I found at the bookfair :D

Monday, October 23, 2006

Review: My favorite witch by Annette Blair

Hmmm, so I got My Favorite Witch last Thursday and read it yesterday. I knew it was part of a series, but I didn't get the first book Kitchen Witch, altho I was tempted. Anyway, here's what I thought...

My Favorite Witch by Annette Blair: 2/5

Okay, I admit it, I got the book because of its cover and probably because it's soon Halloween. And yeah, the blurb on the back sounded promising. So what happened?

Jason Pickering Goddard is a goalie in the NHL, but he's out at the moment due to an injury. While resting, his grandmother who raised him enlisted him to be the Director of Special Events at the Pickering Foundations. Basically, the Pickering Foundations own a couple of mansions with historic value and is in charge of St. Anthony's, a boy orphanage. To help him, Bessie (the grandmother) hired Kira Fitzgerald. So both work together, they're quite attracted to each other... however, Kira just got out of a painful relationship and has swore off men while Jason's main priority is to rest and go back to play hockey.

Lots of things happened in this book. Actually, too much. It seemed to me that the story was all over the place. One minute they were doing something, the next they were kissing, then the other minute, they were talking about Harvey (Jason's hockey stick - both literally and figuratively) and so on. I really had a lot of difficulty to follow the storyline and at some point, I was like, huh? So what they kept talking about were mansions?

In the blurb, it mentioned that Kira "was a sexy witch cursed by a cheating ex-fiance"... I kept waiting the curse, but I guess I read the sentence wrong, cos there really was no mention of a curse. Oh by the way, for those who wonder, Kira's not really a witch... more like a Wiccan, so she plays a bit with good/white magic, but it's not really important and so, if the author took out that part, it wouldn't really change the story. Kira and Jason were both okay characters, but nothing that made them memorable... and the storyline couldn't save the book. So pretty disappointing.

By the way, it seems that the author tried to drag on the story near the end, cos it really didn't make sense to me. 1) the majority of Jason's doctors said that he wouldn't be able to play hockey anymore... and although it is mentioned once that he has some rehab, it seems quite out of nowhere to me that he could play hockey again... and so fast... It was supposed to take 6 months, but the book doesn't span a six months period. 2) I don't understand why Jason didn't make it clear where he stood with Kira. I mean, he rushes back to hockey and Kira is sure that he won't be back. Then, he comes back to her to have sex and he's gone again for another match and meanwhile, Kira is like pinning... it's over... I'm like, this could have been so avoided if both said something like: so what about our relationship in the future? 3) the orphanage. I actually liked the little boys (but they weren't mentioned enough in my opinion)... and I understand why Jason and Kira adopted the twins, but I'm like, isn't that a bit unfair to the rest of the boys? See, Jason and Kira become coaches for the hockey team so they get to interact with all the boys on the hockey team and I'm like, that's just unfair for the rest. But that's probably just me.

anyway, final opinion: I won't be buying the first or the last book of the series.


Okay, I'm feeling a bit down at the moment so bear with me.

first, what is up with the weather? It's been raining and raining and raining so much for the last few weeks, that it is depressing. Grey sky, cold weather. Eww.

Oh, and I was so excited this morning because I thought it was McGill's bookfair today and tomorrow. Turns out the bookfair starts only Wednesday. GRRR. I guess I could tell myself at least, I didn't show up there for nothing nor did I miss it... but still cheap books, I want.

Hmmm, what's been bothering the most tho is that I'm in a major procastinating mood. I have these data to analyze so I can prepare my presentation(for November) and start my final report (December) for my master... I've been done with the manips ever since beginning of September. Did I do anything? Nope. Niet. Nothing. Nada. I've been telling myself to start these damn analysis for weeks and still... and what did I learn this morning, that the presentations might be on November 14. Are you kidding me?!?! That's like in 3 weeks. Hello, could you give us some warning? Like one month in advance!! No. I hate this program. Hate it, hate it, hate it. Okay, I know that some of it is my fault as I haven't done anything, but still... There's a big different between November 14 and November 29... Like 2 weeks. and I'll take those two weeks!

So I guess that's why I'm feeling down a bit. I want to go buy books to cheer me up, but I'm like... where should I go? Indigo/Chapters? Don't feel like it because I'd have to go look for parking... and for some reasons, recently, they don't have the books I want. UBS? I only know one good one on Ste-Catherine... and altho it's a UBS, I find it a bit expensive. I mean, 5-6$ for a used books. I actually know a place where they sell 3 books for the price of 1 and those are new books (not new as in very recent, but new as in not used)... however, they've just changed owners and so I don't know if they still get new stocks. Plus, it's not really on my way (well nothing is really on my way)... So what should I do? Yeah, I know, go home and analyze... don't wanna :(

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Loretta Chase's Scoundrels

As I promised yesterday, here is my review of the much acclaimed Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase. In addition to it, I'll add in a bonus: The Last Hellion, that I went to look for on Laura's recommendation and luckily was able to find at the library :D

Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase: 4.5/5

Hmm, a lot of you already know the story and if not, you can always ask Kristie and Mailyn, I'm sure they'll be delighted to tell you :D or more like urge you to go read the book :D But then, I did promise you a review right?

So Sebastian Ballister is the 4th Marquess of Dain and was born late into his father's life. In fact, it is only after the 3rd Marquess of Dain lost his wife and heirs that he had to marry again to produce an heir, but also to get some money. Unfortunately for Sebastian, he wasn't the cutest child ever and didn't fit the Ballister's beauty standard and in addition, his mother ran away and so, the child was exiled away. Thus, Sebastian grew up thinking that he was a monster, that he was ugly, unlovable and repugnant.

As a result, Dain doesn't believe in love and is very cynic and tortured. He has his own views on the world and his own dictionnary of definitions... Then enters Jessica Trent who's come to rescue her little brother, Bertie Trent, from Dain's clutches. Attractions flared between the two and misunderstandings ensued. Basically, Jess' got her reputation ruined by Dain and after much quarrels, Dain marries Jess. Little by little, Dain learns what love is, but the return of his bastard son in his life might just have ruined all of Jess' efforts, as Dain sees himself (the monster) in what he calls, his Demon Seed.

So where to start? All right, the characters. Wow... I think that this book is really well-written and has a solit plot, but it really wouldn't be the same if it wasn't for the characters. Dain is tortured indeed and he's a bad boy too... but what I like the most about him is that he's not a bad boy wannabe... What I mean is that you know, he doesn't do good deeds behind people's back and doesn't maintain a bad reputation for a facade. He doesn't show a gentle side of him at all (well except when it comes to their first sexual encounter, but that's different). I don't think he has affection to anyone and that's because he doesn't understand nor believe that he can be loved like any other person... I liked it when he was in the bath and he just learnt that his wife was attracted to him and that she liked him... He was all like: Here are the possible reasons she might like me, a) she has bad eyesight, b) she's not sane, c) etc... Later, in Last Hellion, although you see that he's softened, he hasn't changed that much either and I'm like good... I'm getting a bit tired of all those reformed rakes. What about Jessica? Well wow, the girl's tough but not bitchy. She also has lots of guts :D She knows what she wants, she knows what she likes, basically and she's determined to get it. You have to respect a woman like her. I enjoy seeing her shoot her husband (actually, before the marriage).

So anyhow, I thought it was a good book, but a little something was missing. It's like yes, I could read the book and enjoy it, but it didn't seem I could get involved in it. I don't know how to explain this feeling... which is why the book didn't get a perfect grade. Highly recommended book indeed :D

The Last Hellion by Loretta Chase: 3.5/5

The Last Hellion is the story of Duke of Ainswood, Vere Mallory, that you get to meet in Lord of Scoundrels. Surprisingly, Vere wasn't born as the heir to the title, but instead inherited it after his uncle, all his cousins and the 9 year old Robin (current Duke) died. It's a title he never thought he get, but he got it and isn't too happy. In the past 10 years, so many of his family have died, but for Vere, Charlie (Robin's father and Vere's fav. cousin) and Robin's deaths were the hardest on him because he felt like they were deserting him. So instead of setting a good example as a duke, Vere sinks even lower in debauchery...

Then he meets Lydia Grenville who is a journalist for Argus and whose articles on prostitution has made lots of ennemies. Basically, Lydia's mother died when Lydia was much younger, but from her diary, Lydia learns that her mother used to be a Lady, a Ballister actually. Although she doesn't try to re-contact the Ballister, Lydia has moved nonetheless to London to get a better life.

Anyway, I know it's not that clear, but Lydia and Vere's story is actually quite complicated. Basically, I didn't like it as much because a lot was going on and I thought the story didn't really focus enough on the couple. I really enjoyed the beginning of the book, where we saw that Vere was unhappy at inheriting the title and I thought the book would focus more on his anguish... but instead, it focus much more on the demantling of a prostitution ring.

So what I liked: Vere's character, the appearances of Dain, his wife and Bertie Trent. Surprisingly, I actually quite enjoyed Bertie. In LoS, he appeared immature and quite pompus, trying to show Dain that he was a peer, a scoundrel. In this book, well he doesn't sound so immature. Right, he's not the brightest light, but he's a good fellow. It's actually funny that everyone's looking down on him, esp. Dain and his comments.

What I liked less: Lydia annoyed me a bit. You know, she's one of those heroine that is so tough and independant that she doesn't need a man's help. I also thought that she judged ppl a bit too rapidly.

Not a bad book all in all, but it can't compare to LoS... and if LoS was missing the little zing, The Last Hellion didn't find it either.

I'm actually not a fan of regency... I mean, I'll read it, but I still prefer contemporaries and paranormal... However, Loretta Chase's romance seems to be less fluffy as the others and actually, (don't throw stone at me for saying this) but almost dry. It's quite direct and to the fact. Not a bad thing, but different and that's a nice change in pace.


Good morning girls (it's 3 am)!

So what do you think? First, I'd like to say something to Mailyn: I'm sorry I didn't ask your permission first to use one of your template. I hope you don't mind tho (I bet you aren't, but still, it's better that I apologize first)... I put your name in the credits and all and if you really do mind, then I'll take it down and wait for you to make me a new one :D

So, as you can guess, I didn't manage to do this new layout from scratch in only a couple of hours. Instead, I based myself on the Twisted Kingdom blog that Mailyn designed and did a few twitch. Whew... Still, it wasn't easy, so kudos to Mailyn who does it so often.

As you've probably guessed, blue is my fav. color :D Does the color palette look too childish or girly? I couldn't think up of any other color and after a few attempts, I just give up trying to match them. I made the banner myself tho (well almost... the art was from a friend of mine, I scanned it). My first attempt at photoshop. Unfortunately, I have no funny story to tell like Kristie. All I can say is that I wanted to pull my hair out a couple of time.

anyway, I'm going to sleep now (if my dad catches me, I'm dead ^^; )
It is highly possible that there might be a few glitches here and there, so please let me know :D

As for book, I finished Lord of Scoundrels :D So you guys can expect a review this week-end.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Ha! Side bar updated

Hey girls...

look on your right! What do you see? Yes, different covers! it actually looks quite nice :D Hmmm, I've been wanting to change the look of my blog lately (after all, everyone has been changing it - well almost everyone). I wanted a banner with plenty of Natuschan (the lil dumpling), but my friend who draw them is in China at the moment - having fun (How dare you Yeti! Without me!!!) Still, I might try to do some changes on my own and later, have a layout designed specifically to match the banner... anyway, I'm going to try for something with a wider blog space (I mean, have smaller margins).

Anyway, not sure it's going to happen, but it's something I'd like to do...

Enough for tonight :D Night night everyone!


Sigh, another long day at work.

Anyway, I went to buy some books today :D Youppi! Then, after buying them, I start thinking that soon, I'm going to have to slow down a bit. Been spending quite a lot of $$ lately and if this continues, I won't be able to save anything. Isn't that depressing?

 So what did I get?

- My favorite Witch by Annette Blair (on a whim)
- Warrior and Witch by Marie Brennan ( I liked the cover)
- The Panther & The Pyramid by Bonnie Vanak

I wanted the prequel to Warrior and Witch, i.e. Doppelganger. On the website, it said that both Chapters and Indigo had a copy, but couldn't find it... argh. Maybe I should go to the drugstore? I did find Slave to Sensation tho... By the way, what's wrong with the employees at Indigo? It seems like someone doesn't know his/her alphabet... I found Warrior and Witch by Marie Brennan after Patricia Briggs. Hmmm... doesn't E comes before I? In addition, Retrieval by Jeanie London was also placed at the wrong place (in the L, but not the right place)... and Played by Barbara Freethy was placed before Lori Forster's books... hmmm. Still can't wait the new Indigo to open tho. At least, they'll have a huge parking while the Indigo and Chapters I'm going to presently are right in the middle of downtown (it's hell to find parking place...)

I also got some manga: Bleach, Aishiteruze Baby, One Piece and Samurai Deeper Kyo (all very very good manga) at another store... which reminds me, my Gap Jeans make the alarm system ring... apparently, there's a tag in the jeans, but employees at Gap don't remove it because they don't have the alarm system to detect it... but bookstores do. So I've been ringing each time I go in or out of those store. Quite embarassing sometimes.

I am currently reading Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase. Quite good so far. (Okay, I cheated, I read the ending...) Now, I only have the middle left to read. I really like Jessica Trent... luv that she shot Dain. He deserved it... but then, he's twisted. Don't we love twisted guys?

Many of you have been posting their opinions on TV series. Well, now it's my turn (yeah, I know, I'm not really original... but who cares?) I don't watch American/Canadian TV much. Instead, I rent Chinese TV series (Hong Kong, Taiwan, mainland China) that are dubbed in vietnamese (Yes, Vietnamese speaks vietnamese, surprise surprise! - lil pun, you can go see Mailyn's today rant to understand). Anyway, so I watch Chinese TV series and these are the one I'm looking forward to:

Return of the Condor Heroes

This is a TV adaptation of Jin Yong (Louis Cha) very popular novel Return of the Condor Heroes. It's basically a martial art novel, but with lots and lots of romance. The 1983's version of Hong Kong was my first chinese TV series ever and since then, I've been hooked. I also enjoyed the 1995's version a LOT... Anyway, this series came out last March in China... I basically have to wait 1 freaking year to see it in viet (yeah, I d/l the chinese version and I know the story, so I know what's happening, but not understanding is not the same). By the way, please God, make them get really good voice actors! Please, please, please... Anyway, below are some pics. Ain't she pretty? At first, I really had doubts on her acting, but she did a fabulous job. Anyway, ain't she good (4th pic)... she used to be a dancer and she's like 19 y.o. when this series was filmed. The scenery is awesome too. (I couldn't find a fighting scene to post tho...)

Royal Blood and Stained Sword

From the same author... I wish this adaptation will be good, because the past 2 sucked. But then, the author did change the story a bit. Oh well, I'll just tell myself he never :P I actually don't like the cast that much, except for one actress which is the one in the first pic. The guy is really ugly... and the main female lead, well she didn't luck out and didn't get a really nice hairstyle and costume... ain't it sad? Oh, and there's this great actor, but he's only making guest appearance. Sigh... Been waiting for this series to be released in China ever since ROCH was released... so that's what? The whole summer already?

Last series, Flying Fox in the Snowy Mountain

Again, same author. This one, I'm hesitant. It's not the same producer/director as the previous two. And this producer is known to screw up his adaptation. It is actually so frustrating, because from the filming, you can already tell that they changed a LOT. By the way, what's up with the costum design? Yes, yes, we know... the title is Flying Fox, but you don't have to take is as a theme and one of the character has dreadlocks. Hello?? How can he look heroic with dreadlocks?!? But then, for the actor, I guess having dreadlocks is better than having half his head shaved... I like the cast tho...

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

My TBR pile...

It's my turn, it's my turn to show you my TBR pile...

I was taking one of the hardcover down from my shelves and the pile fell off... from my shelf onto my TV, onto the VCR... onto the floor T_T I had DVDs on the TV... hopefully, they're okay T_T I know that the box got a bit cracked (sob, sob, sob).

So here's my TBR pile: basically, my TBR pile is divided into three.

1) my Real TBR pile as in the books are waiting to be read

The Trouble with Magic by Madelyn Alt
The Turning by Jennifer Armintrout
The Stiff and the Dead / A dose of Murder / One Dead Under the Cuckoo's Nest by Lori Avocato
Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey
Divine by Mistake by P.C. Cast
Touch the Dark by Karen Chance
Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase
Don't say a word / Taken / Played by Barbara Freethy
Tall, Dark and Dead by Tate Hallaway
Aphrodite's Secret by Julie Kenner
Soft Focus / Sweet Fortune by Jayne Ann Krentz (library book)
The Shop and Blossom Street by Debbie Macomber
Marriage by Design by Lynn Micheals
The Care and Feeding of Unmarried Men by Christie Ridgway
Diamond / Lucky by Sharon Sala
Be Mine Tonight by Kathryn Smith
Poison Study /Magic Study by Maria V. Snyder
Confidence Game by Michelle M. Welch
The Mistress by Susan Wiggs

Total: 26 books

2) The Skimmed Pile: books that I've bought and skimmed through the books, enough to know what's the story, but missing the details

The Dream Thief by Shana Abé
Moon Called by Patricia Briggs
The Weather Warden series (1-4) by Rachel Caine
A Southern Vampire series (1-4) by Charlaine Harris
Dance of the Gods by Nora Roberts
Kitty and the Midnight Hour by Carrie Vaughn

Total: 12 books

3) The I don't feel like reading pile books : books that I've bought on impulse and lost the motivation to read... which are not really part of the TBR pile, because unless I really have nothing to read, I won't get to them ^^;

Ghosts of Boyfriends Past by Carly Alexander
Full Moon Rising by Keri Arthur
Confessions of a Lingerie Addict by Jennifer Ashley
Without You by Mary Lynn Baxter
Death by Inferior Design by Leslie Caine
Mum's the Word by Kate Collins
Priceless by Marne Davis Kellogg
Snoops in the city by Darlene Gardner
To the Edge / To the Brink by Cindy Gerard
Eyes of Fire by Heather Graham
To Catch a Wolff by Susan Krinard
Much Ado in the Moonlight by Lynn Kurland
Sword of Darkness by Kinley MacGregor
Split by Tara Moss
The Shadow by Shelley Munro
Bitten & Smitten / Angel with Attitude by Michelle Rowen
Working for the Devil by Lilith Saintcrow
Black Ice by Anne Stuart
Finding Mary Blaine by Jodi Thomas

Total: 21 books *might have more in my pile belonging to this pile

So that's it. Grand total of 59 books :D

Pictures to come :D

Monday, October 16, 2006

Review: Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh

Hello everyone :D

So how was your week-end? Mine was pretty peaceful... in fact, I think I spent it reading, sleeping and eating :D However, I'm starting to get nervous, because I've been procastinating so much ^^; Really need to get my stuff together, argh!

So, this week-end, guess what I read? Yep, Slave to Sensation by Ms. Nalini Singh!! :D

Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh: 5/5

In this new world, three races co-habit together: the humans, the changelings (basically shapeshifters) and the Psy. Psy are, well I guess, humans with psychics abilities. In order to be on top of the world, the Psy have initiated a program called Silence in order to strip them of all their feelings. If they can't feel fear, jealousy, anger, etc. then they can control their lives based on logic only and there shouldn't be violence and that's why Psy occupied the most powerful positions. Psy that have feelings are sent to an instution where they are brain-washed and stripped of their mental functions.

Sascha Duncan is a cardinal Psy, i.e. a Psy from the most powerful category/rank. Unfortunately, her potential was never unlocked and thus, she doesn't really have any high status in the Council/Psy community. Worst, she feels... and she knows that soon, she won't be able to hide the fact that she feels... which means she will be institutionalized.

Lucas Hunter is a panther/leopard and is the alpha of the DarkRiver pack. Not long ago, a female leopard of his pack has been kidnapped, tortured and killed. After investigating, he's found many more victim and has come to the conclusion that the serial killer can only be a Psy. In order to gain access to Psy information, Lucas strucks a business deal with the Duncan family... and as soon as Lucas sees Sascha, he knows that she is different.

One word: WOW :D This book was very good... The world building is nicely done and you learn stuff about the Psy and changelings throughout the book. The characters were cool too, very tough and smart. Sascha is in no way a TSTL heroine and Lucas, well he's the typical alpha shapeshifter, i.e. that he's strong, possessive, protective and yummy. As for the story, well it's really well constructed and I can't find anything that bothers me :D I can't think of anything else to write, I guess that the grade that I gave this book tells it all (it's the first book that gets a perfect note :D). I just want to share a little excerpt with you guys cos I found it so funneh.

Just to put you in context, Sascha is planning to leave the Psy; however, her mind is connected to a Psy-net (kind of like the internet) and she cannot live without that connections because it feeds her mind. So they are looking for a way she could survive...
"Impossible." Sascha was leaning forward, palms braced on the table. "I agree the connection between mates is almost psychic, but that bond doesn't exist for me with anyone else. How do I mate with more than one leopard?"

"You don't," Lucas snapped before he could stop himself. "You belong to me. End of story."

She narrowed her eyes at him. "I know that, your highness, but I was pointing out the impossibility of what Walker is suggesting. There's no way for me to link with anyone outside of you."
So now, my only worry is that the next book might not be as good :P

Saturday, October 14, 2006

I'm a chauffeur...

Hello :D

I haven't really been around these past two days and I'm sorry if you've left comments (I just answered :D)... I had an optometrist appointment yesterday and since it was in a shopping mall, well you can guess :D then by the time I came back, ate, read and played taxi chauffeur for my sister and I managed to fall asleep as well :D Today, I've read, played chauffeur again, went out to get food, went out to get more food and I had a marathon of Gundam Seed, a mecha anime that I just love - I'm still pissed at the sequel. What the heck was the producer/director thinking, splitting up my fav. couple. Hello, they were PERFECT for each other. You just wanted to add some drama and since you didn't have the guts to split the main couple, you went for Athrun and Cagalli. Well bad, bad, bad choice. I HATE YOU. Bring them back together, you... whatever.

Okay, sorry, got carried away, it's just that I luv that couple. I've also been doing some samurai sudoku, they're fun but very time consuming.

Also, guess what? I found Slave to Sensation yesterday... at Pharmaprix, which is a drug store. I was really amazed at their book selection because they do have new stuff... they even had Poison Study, can you imagine?!? I mean, a drugstore.... wow, come to think of it, they had a better selection in ENGLISH than Waltmart. I'm amazed... I think I read that someone else aside from me did find StS at Pharmaprix and that's why I kept looking/searching for it... in the hope of... and now I have it :D Only thing is that I didn't save $ on it, but if it's a keeper as everyone's been telling, it'll be worth it :D

I don't know why, but I've been putting off Poison Study. I think it's because I have so much high expectations from reading great reviews that I'm a bit nervous... afraid to be disapointed, which is totally stupid, I know. I hope to get to it soon.

I've also finished another book:

Sheer Dynamite by Jennifer Skully: 3.75/5

Opal Smith feels like a misfit in her family: her mother has some psychic abilities, her sister is able to read ppl, her brother is a medium, her father was a spoonbender (telekinesis) and all she has a good financial gift. She's always hoped to be a psychic and suddenly, her wish comes true as she has a vision of someone falling for the overpass. Only problem, she had the vision while she was driving and so in order to avoid the 'body' she slammed her break and got rear-end by Jack Davis.

Despite everything he says, Jack Davis is a nice man and immediately, he starts to care for Opal. Okay, so at first, he thought she was a bit loco - he has experience (his mom was shizophrenic), but Opal turns out to be completely different. But one thing is certain, he would never have gotten involved with Opal if it wasn't Opal's grandmother Blue affirmation that Jack Davis was Dynamite's reincarnation.

See, Grandmother Blue deeply cares for Opal and she knows that Opal didn't really have a premonition/vision... so she tries to distract her granddaughter, by throwing her in the arms of Jack Davis whom she thinks is a great man for Opal. To do so, she pretends that Jack Davis is the reincarnation of Jack Davis 'Dynamite,' a deceased Nascar driver.

Anyway, I didn't expect much of this novel... I picked it up because I thought the cover was cutsy and because there were psychics in it :D Well, I wasn't disappointed. Granted, I didn't have high expectations, but this book was quite enjoyable and funny. I guess the grand prize goes to Grandmother Blue, which resemble to Grandmother Mazur from the Plum series, but Blue is better :D She's much funnier and serious at the same time :) Opal and Jack were also great and I do understand why Opal wanted to fit so much. At the same time, I'm glad to see she understood that she was all right just the way she was ;D

So all in all, a nice and light novel :)

Thursday, October 12, 2006

The story of my life...

... just kidding :P I just thought it'd be a nice title.

1- for anyone who's interested, I confess, I'm a sidebar slacker. I bow to everyone who's been keeping their sidebar up-to-date, I don't know how you do it. I've been reading and buying so much books lately that the sidebar would be changing every day. Perhaps I might, might being the operative word, try to update it once every week-end?

2- I forgot to mention it in my review of A Season to be Sinful, but there's something.... the French in the book! So I'm fluent in French and yes, I do mind a bit about the grammar and spelling mistakes.... So kay, I'm offering... editors, if you either need someone to check on the French in the books, I'm your woman.

3- I went to Indigo today. I wanted to get Slave for Sensation by Nanili Singh... it says there's one copy... but the question is WHERE?!? It wasn't on the shelves... and in the romance section, there were like 5 carts of books so full... after the third one, I gave up...

There was something else, but I can't quite remember at this point... Man, guess I'm glad this wasn't the story of my life :P

Edit - Oh, yeah... I'm a bit disappointed at myself because I forgot to buy The Panther and the Pyramid T_T

Unlike everyone else, I'm not in a reading slump...

Am I making any jealous? :D

So yesterday night, I read Hard Evidence by Pamela Clare and here is what I thought:

Hard Evidence by Pamela Clare: 4/5

Hot cover right? :D I don't know why, but ever since I saw this cover (I think it was on KristieJ's blog), I always thought that they were in the rain... but in the shower makes more sense ^^;

Tessa couldn't get coffee from her favorite coffee shop because she got off work too late. So instead of some high quality coffee, she gets something slurpy and muddy, coffee from a gas station. She was about to pay when a young Latino girl runs in, asking for help in Spanish and saying that they will kill her. Few seconds later, a black car stops by, shoots the Latino girl and leaves. While giving her statement to the police, she sees a man, with long hair tied into a ponytail and wearing a black leather jacket, hang out outside of the station... then, the next second, he has vanished.

Tessa is an investigative reporter and of course, this murder is news to her. As a result, she shares her view in an article with the population about what she witnessed... As she investigated on her own, she writes some more dangerous articles such as street gangs and human trafficking. All this of course brings her close to danger and the only person able to keep her safe is that stranger she saw at the station after the shooting.

Julian is an undercover cop. He used to work for the FBI, but resigned when 2 other agents got killed and another got shot during an operation he was supervising. During the same operation, the target also managed to escape and Julian has spent the last few years of his life trying to bring Burien down. Burien deals with human trafficking: extremely young girls that he forces into the prostitution witness. Now, Julian is working with Denver Police Department to catch Burien, demantle his network and protect Tessa.

Okay, so I liked the book :) and I really want to read Extreme Exposure. Anyhow, I liked the story and the characters. Tessa really sounds like a tough cookie, but she's really soft in real life and as for Julian, after years of undercover work and his background, he doesn't believe that he'll be able to get the house with wife and kids and white fence. I really like how Julian was described and what he had to do in his undercover work and how he was disgusted by it. Made him feel real to me. I also liked Tessa... it's quite understandable why she was ashamed of her family and need to get away. Although she hasn't spoken with her mom, she's been sending her money and that came as a surprise and it quite redeemed anything else she's done to change her past.

I seriously don't have many complaints, as the story was well written and suspensful, I like the slight twist, the epilogue and so on. But of course, if this book was perfect, it would have gotten a 5 instead of a 4. So what's my issue? I know Tessa is an investigative reporter... I know that the public has a right to know, but when is it going too far? I mean, by writing her articles, Tessa has put her life on the line quite a number of time... and not just her life, but others too. Is having the public know the truth, understand, get sensitized or whatever more important than your life or other's? I'm sorry if any of you are reporterséjournalists, but I think not. Tessa mentioned the power of the press, well I think that most of the time, it is bad ^^; So that's what annoyed me and at one point, I really wonder if Tessa was bright or TSTL... but turns out she's bright of course.

So that's it for Hard Evidence... I wonder if the author has another book from this 'series' coming out... hmmm. and anyone here who has read her historicals?

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Quick review

Good morning everyone!

You know, I really like it to come to work early... it's 8am right now (I've been at work for an hour already) and there's 4 persons in the lab, me included... no one to look over your shoulder to see if you're working or not :P Which allows me to do some blog hopping and this quick review.

A Season to be Sinful by Jo Goodman: 3/5

So after reading One Forbidden Evening earlier this summer, I got curious and wanted to read A Season to be Sinful, mainly for Sherry, the viscount, but also for the 3 scoundrels Pinch, Dash and Midge. All in all, the characters did not disappoint me that much; however, I cannot say that I loved this book.

So one night, Alexander Graham, viscount Sheridan also known as Sherry, went to the theater with his mistress and almost got stabbed. He assumed that the one trying to stab him was thief; however, this say thief stumbled over his own blade. Hmmm, after consideration, Sherry wondered how the thief could stabbed himself instead of stab him and so, Sherry has been going around, asking to be led to the thief to give him some money. Of course, he didn't find the thief, but another night, three boys show up and ask for the money in order to save their teacher, Miss Lily Rose. At this point, Sherry is pretty shocked that his assaillant was a woman and ask the boys to guide him to her, along with his physician. At this point, Sherry manages to save the live of Lily and become protective of the three scoundrels. Once Lily is strong enough, they depart to his country estate where Sherry, prior to the accident, had decided to go live permanently, because he does not enjoy London. Of course, Sherry and Lily become involved...

... and this is about the part that I stop reading the book. Not because the story wasn't good, but because the plot took a turn that I didn't care for. See, Lily Rose, real name Lilith, was raised at the Abbey of Sacre-Coeur in France. When she was about 16 years old, this English baron came to look for a governess for his children... Yeah right, the pervert came to look for a toy and his sight settled on Lily. At Sister Mary Joseph urgence, Lily runs away and is supposed to make her way to England, but she ends up in the Baron's clutches and become his toy for the next 1 or 2 years... This was part of the plot that I didn't expect and seriously, it totally threw me off. I guess the readers are made to believe that Lily escaped the fate of becoming the baron sex toy by running away and living on the street, and so that's what I believed. However, that's not what happened and really, that's not what I was expecting to read... and that's why I put the book down. Wasn't interested anymore. Next time, dear author, please give me more warning ^^; What I really found unbelievable though was that in a few years, Lily rebound and she was able to make love with Sherry without any problem, I even think that she seduced him and in many instances, initiate the kiss.

Mind you, I don't need my heroines to all be virgins and I have to admit, that it's becoming a common plot, esp. in historicals and so I embrace it when there's some differences in plot. However, I'd believed that when you've been used sexually as she was, you'd be wary a bit... and I just thought that it was quite unbelievable that she could make love with Sherry with no fear or other feelings. So yeah, didn't like that part of the book... actually, what happened is that it made me really sad... You know, you never really like to read about a woman being sexually abused, even less when she's been used and psychologically manipulated. Good for her to have escaped, but that didn't redeem what happened in my heart and so, I didn't really read the end of the book, because at this point, I know I would not have liked the book.

Otherwise, I thought the first half of the book was very well constructed and showed great promises. However, as Tara Marie once said, Jo Goodman's books tend to be long and I think that was the case with this book too...

So that's it. Have a nice day :D

Monday, October 09, 2006

2 reviews for one

So, the long week-end is almost over... in about 2 hours, which means I have two hours to deliever the review I promise :D and as a bonus, you get an extra review :P anyway, here it is:

Golden Threads by Kay Hooper: 3.5/5

Lara Mason isn't really Lara Mason... her real last name is something else (sorreh, can't remember and can't find it again in the book). A year ago, her father got murdered while he was investigating an organization that was stealing plans and information of some governmental projects and so, for the past year, she's been part of the Witness Protection program and has hiding in this little town. However, she's been feeling jailed up and so have decided to participate into the town theater production of Rapunzel. At the same time, appears Devon, a new stranger in town who gets the Prince role and some incidents have been happening to Lara (almost being hit by a car, her house being broken in, etc.)... Turns out more information and plans have been disappearing and two groups are after Lara: the bad guys and the FBI because Lara's father had some important proofs that are still hidden and figure that Lara would know where it is...

I actually quite enjoyed the book... However, it is quite out-dated ^^; My big issue with this book was that Devon and Lara got together too fast, but aside from that, it was nice. Two major things that I liked? The reappearance of Cyrus Fortune, who is the main character of The Matchmaker and Ching, Lara's cat. I have to say, I'm not an animal lover (not dog or cat or any other animals), but esp. not cat cos I don't find them as affectionated as dogs... Anyway, I don't love the real version, but I do enjoy their antics in books... but that's usually dogs. I mean, cat don't usually do much, even in books. Kay Hooper's cats are different and so I really liked Lara's cat, Ching. I guess, it's mostly because he didn't act like a cat.

So would I recommend this book? I'd say if you're a fan of Kay Hooper and you've never read this book, go ahead... if you're not, well you can skip as it is not earth shattering... a nice romance novels, but there's probably newer books that you'd like to read :P

I'm in no Mood for Love by Rachel Gibson: 3.5/5

I'm in no Mood for Love is the second book of a series of 4, I guess, featuring Claresta Wingate, a historical romance author. Just before her friend's wedding ceremony, Clare discovers her fiancé having sex in her closet... with the Sears repairMAN. So of course, she's shocked... goes to the ceremony, acts as one of the bridemaids, manages to get drunk and wakes up with in a hotel room with a man... and not any man, but Sebatien Vaughan, the gardener's son and boy that played so many tricks on her when she was younger. Turns out they didn't have sex, altho she believed so for awhile. However, both are definitively attracted to each other... and what are they going to do with this attraction?

So, I did enjoy this book, but I did have some problems with it too. I like the tone, the pace and the writing... The characters were all right, but I guess what I didn't like is that almost nothing happened ^^; I don't have problems with characters-focus books... but in this case, it seems to me that the book could have been cut in half and it would have changed nothing, i.e. nothing would have been cut out of the storyline. I thought that the some parts were made more important than necessary. Eg: safe sex, while important, the author didn't have to dwell on it (the whole scene where Clare had to call to set the appointment and then, tell Sebastien to test himself too.) Also, the whole part about Clare having loved Lonny (the gay boyfriend) and then, missing him and later, being okay, no longer heart-broken. I mean, usually, in characters-focus books, the story will focus on relationship... but in this case, you get the occasional get-together with her friends, which was nice, cos that was pretty much lacking in the previous book, Sex, Lies and Online Dating, and although Sebastien and his father's relationship gets better... that's it. Hmmm... not a whole lot of relationship happening here... and Clare and her mother's relationship still remain quite crappy... However, MY biggest problem with this book was Clare at the end... I've never been fond of characters, esp. female main characters, having sex with the main male lead and thinking: it was just sex. First time, okay.. but when it becomes obvious that they're having a relationship and they still believe it's just sex, it's just stupid too me. Otherwise, the book is good... although I'm not sure I'm interested in the next one of the series.

So there were my reviews :D By the way, my TBR pile has increased as I've acquired new books (4: Taken by Barbara Freethy, A Season to be Sinful by Jo Goodman, Hard Evidence by Pamela Clare and Retrieval by Jeanie London) and I've also spent the week-end re-reading the Black Jewels trilogy.

Friday, October 06, 2006

lil update

Yes, yes... I'm still alive and yes, I've been reading :D

- I got at least one review planned for this week-end, Kay Hooper's Golden Thread; however, as it is a long week-end, there should be more :D

- I'm going to start Poison Study very soon as I just got Indigo's shipping confirmation of Magic Study... It should be here by at least Friday...

- Other good news, I finally got Lord of Scoundrel by Loretta Chase after 2 months of waiting!!! I'm going to read it soon, well no choice since it's a library book... but damn, I wish Avon would re-release it soon.

- I did go book shopping... It seems like it had become a weekly activity... or perhaps, I should say, a bi-weekly activity ^^; I got:
+ Dream Thief by Shana Abe (bought it on an impulse... was going to wait to buy it online... or at least, wait for Kristie's review... but just couldn't).
+ I'm in no Mood for Love by Rachel Gibson
+ Circle of Dance by Nora Roberts
+ Played by Barbara Freethy (by the way, anyone who read Taken? it seems like the prequel)
+ Sheer Dynamite by Jennifer Skully (pretty much an impulse buy)

- I've pretty much given up on cruising the net to keep up with every month's releases... because I just can't keep up... there's so much. anyway, for the paranormal reads, I have Dancechica which has official become my paranormal book pimper :P However, I know that this month, there's two books that I want: No Rest for the Wicked by Kresley Cole and Billionaire likes Blonde by Suzanne Enoch.

- By the way, I'm such a bad blogger ^^; and I'm so late with my blog pimping ^^; As most of you already know, I'm part of two new blogs: Twisted Kingdom and Perfect Drug. (I don't know how to put up the nice banners and buttons Mailyn designed ^^;; Help, Mailyn!) Anyway, Twisted Kingdom is a blog about fantasy and paranormal books whilce Perfect Drug focuses on manga, anime, graphic novel and so on. Enjoy!

- Good news... i found Eyeshield21 scanslation in French... I could kiss the scanslation team for their good work! I've been dying to know what was happening and since the English scanslation've been stucked for awhile, I was really glad. So that was what I've been reading yesterday's night... Luv Hiruma, so hilarious!

- Oh... and I have to share this. Not as nice as the eyecandy that Mailyn has provided a few days ago as they are not real, but drawings (which I have to add, is such a shame!!). Still, they're good for me. I just found Haru wo daita ite's artbook and I've written a review of the manga which is available at Perfect Drug blog. So here are some pages part of the artbook... Man, I wish I could draw like that...

Sunday, October 01, 2006

October already...

Hello everyone :D

Well, it's been quiet lately... and I've just been wondering what everyone is up to?

As usual, I've been reading; however, unfortunately to me, not many good books ^^; I really should start on Poison Study which I know is going to a keeper :) wanted to wait for Magic Study, the sequel, that I've just ordered last monday, but it seems it won't arrive till next week... that's just too long to wait, esp. when there's no good book at all.... This week-end, I've read Trust Me by Jayne Ann Krentz. Whoever is interested in a review can head towards Devonna's blog. That's where I got the urge to read to read Trust me... just to realize that I've already read it a couple of years ago. It's a pretty good book tho :) I've also been trying to read Witchling by Yasmine Galenorn all day today. Head towards Twisted Kingdom for my review.