Monday, December 28, 2009

Insider Dating by Jennifer O'Connell

Insider Dating by Jennifer O'Connell

My Rating: 8 *'s

Description: Recently divorced, top financial analyst Abby Dunn has learned the hard way that when it comes to relationships, there's no sure thing. But Abby has decided to use her knack for risk management to change all that --- and give a whole new meaning to mergers and acquisitions. She's creating a members-only club in which women share the inside-dating information they need to invest in their greatest assets: themselves. And she has underperforming men running scared.

But while Abby is busy hedging bets, someone is skewing her data and threatening to ruin her business. Now Abby is is about to find out that sometimes even the savviest market wizards can be headed for a crash.

While it may be perfectly legal, nothing good can come from insider dating...

My Thoughts: The first book I've read by this author. I liked the characters and the story had a good premise. The back cover blurb is not accurate, though. The author doesn't spend a lot of time in the past which would have given the reader a better understanding of why Abby's marriage failed, which is the catalyst for her actions in this story. I liked that Abby was a flawed heroine. She made a lot of mistakes and definitely wasn't the victim of a bad marriage as she contributed to the downfall quite a bit. She also carries a lot of baggage from her own parents divorce with her that established the foundation for a lot of her behavior and thinking. I will be looking for more books by this author.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer

Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer

My Rating: 6 *'s

Description: When you loved the one who was killing you, it left you no options. How could you run, how could you fight, when doing so would hurt that beloved one? If your life was all you had to give, how could you not give it? If it was someone you truly loved?

To be irrevocably in love with a vampire is both fantasy and nightmare woven into a dangerously heightened reality for Bella Swan. Pulled in one direction by her intense passion for Edward Cullen, and in another by her profound connection to werewolf Jacob Black, a tumultuous year of temptation, loss, and strife have led her to the ultimate turning point. Her imminent choice to either join the dark but seductive world of immortals or to pursue a fully human life has become the thread from which the fates of two tribes hangs.

Now that Bella has made her decision, a startling chain of unprecedented events is about to unfold with potentially devastating, and unfathomable, consequences. Just when the frayed strands of Bella's life-first discovered in Twilight, then scattered and torn in New Moon and Eclipse-seem ready to heal and knit together, could they be destroyed... forever?

My Thoughts: Good ending to an interesting series. The story seemed to drag for me somewhat and I had a hard time accepting how easily Bella adjusted to her new existence, but I liked how the story turned out. I recommend this series to anyone who enjoys vampire romance.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Books On The Nightstand

As the year is quickly winding down, I see I have several titles still sitting on the nightstand that it doesn't look like I will get read by the end of the year.

Here is what's stacked up...

Dating Big Bird by Laura Zigman

Description: With the laugh-out-loud humor and heartfelt wisdom that made ANIMAL HUSBANDRY a national bestseller, Laura Zigman's second novel introduces Ellen Franck, a successful single career woman whose one desire -- a child of her own -- throws her into the ever-growing ranks of the "reproductively challenged."

Ellen has a life many people dream about -- a glamorous fashion industry job, an apartment in Greenwich Village, good friends -- and yet Ellen feels herself at sixes and sevens, filled with a vague longing for... what? She can't say. Then the sight of her newborn niece, Nicole (a.k.a. "The Pickle"), makes her realize exactly what she's been missing: a child. But there's one problem. Malcolm, the man she loves, is too scarred by the long-ago death of his young son to ever consider fatherhood again.

Looking down the barrel of the dark side of thirty-five, Ellen knows that time is passing, and as it does, her desire to have a baby only increases -- especially when her sister Lynn announces she's pregnant with her second child. Now Ellen must finally address the very real flaws in her relationship with Malcolm and examine her doubts and fears about the only option that seems to be available -- single motherhood. And so begins nine months of reading, Internet surfing, and nonstop Zigmanesque observations about morning sickness, stretch marks, accelerated hair growth, digestion, amniocentesis (and that's just the beginning). And Ellen... well, Ellen finally makes a clear-eyed decision that will change her life.

Murder Between The Covers by Elaine Viets

Description: Once on the fast track to success, Helen Hawthorne is going nowhere faster. Forced to trade in her chic life for a shabby one, she's now on the run, jumping from city to city and dead-end job to dead-end job, trying to stay one step ahead of her past....

Helen has a new job "off the books" at Page Turners bookstore in Fort Lauderdale. It's run by Page Turner III, who happens to be neither well-read nor well-liked. When his money troubles surface, it seems the store's long life may be over --- but it's Page's life that's cut short instead. He had plenty of enemies, including an unhappy wife and unfortunate employees. But it is his unforgiving lover --- Helen's wacky neighbor --- police are ready to throw the book at. To save her friend, Helen will have to read between the lines ... and uncover the truth about a clever killer.

Wife In The Fast Lane by Karen Quinn

Description: Christy Hayes is a case study in successful living. She's won two Olympic gold medals, built a multimillion-dollar business, and landed a gorgeous and powerful CEO husband. But Christy's dream life begins to unravel when she inherits custody of an eleven year old girl named Renata. Suddenly she finds herself battling three formidable opponents: a treacherous business partner bent on ousting her from the company she founded, a ruthless stay at home mom who'll stop at nothing to maintain her PTA power base, and a stunning single woman scheming to steal her husband. Throw in the demands of one high maintenance spouse and it's clear: something's got to give. But what? Her marriage? Her career? Her sanity?

Tall, Dark & Dead by Tate Hallaway

Description: The line between magic and sanity is very thin. That's part of why I, Garnet Lacey, quit cold turkey. Never touch the stuff. No exceptions.

But magic is so addictive...and my inner Goddess, Lilith, is hard to resist. Besides, restraint isn't easy when you manage Wisconsin's premier occult bookstore, and get customers like Sebastian Von Traum --- piercing brown eyes, a sexy accent, and a killer body in black leather and denim. The only thing missing is an aura. Which means he's dead...

That means trouble. I guess I'm a sucker for it. The Vatican witch hunters are on to us. My long-lost vampire ex has crawled out of the woodwork looking for action. And Sebastian's frustrated ex is stirring in her grave.

What's a girl to do if she's hot for a dead man walking? Run like hell --- and take full advantage of the nights...

Nursery Crimes by Ayelet Waldman

Description: A public defender turned stay at home mom, Juliet Applebaum is bored with playdates and trips to the park --- so near the end of her second pregnancy, she gets off the mommy track to track down a murderer....

Juliet isn't too surprised when her feisty, tantrum throwing two year old daughter doesn't get into Hollywood's premier preschool ---- but she's shocked and suspicious when the school's principal is killed in a hit and run accident. Against the advice of her screenwriter husband, and with her rambunctious toddler in tow, Juliet heads to the local playground to dig up some dirt on a disgruntled studio executive whose daughter wasn't offered a place in the school. But she has some surprising new suspects to consider when her investigation takes her into a seedy online newsgroup --- and the most dangerous parts of the human heart....

Couch World by Cathy Yardley

Description: It's all about the furniture, the friends, the funk.


P.J.'s life is simple. Wake up at 2:00 p.m. In someone else's place, on someone else's couch. Shower. Clothes. Club. P.J.'s a punter -- someone who fills in if a DJ isn't able to make a gig. San Francisco is a hotbed of glam bands and alternative rock, and P.J.'s into all of it -- she's been living the urban Bedouin lifestyle for almost a year now, saving money to create the blow-out, off-the-hook demo of the music she loves, the music for which she deliberately abandoned "normal."

Ever wondered what it would be like to pack it all in and live the carefree life -- no 9 to 5, no daily grind, no routine, no one to check in with? P.J. knows how it's done. The most important element? Lots of friends, with couches. One night it's Cecil's high-end settee, the next it's Sticky's lumpy sofa. P.J.'s even got smarmy Samantha to make sure there's always a hideaway bed from hell in the wings. But when a reporter infiltrates her life, then acts as if she wants to make it her own, P.J. senses real trouble. Could this spell the end of couch world?

What's sitting on your nightstand?

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Gaming My Own Way

Before The Scottish Guy and I got married, the only gaming I was interested in was The Sims. Interested is a weak adjective though. It actually bordered on obsessed. The ex-asshole and I played a little Nintendo before he graduated to Playstation and then eventually to Xbox. The Scottish Guy gave me an Xbox for our first Christmas as a married couple. I was really excited because I had discovered Uno on Xbox and wanted to play without having to exit the console because Halo or Call of Duty or Rainbow 6 was summoning my man.

I tried to play Halo with him once but was completely overwhelmed with the pace of the game and the fact that he kept sneaking up behind me and clobbering me in the back of the head with a battle rifle didn't help. Enjoyed playing LEGO Indiana Jones so much that I jumped on to LEGO Star Wars, but haven't finished it. Have found that I also enjoy all of the Guitar Hero and Rock Band games and we are accumulating quite a collection of guitars.

Imagine my excitement and enthusiasm when I was informed about the release of the Resident Evil special edition Xbox 360 elite console. Never played the game, never had an interest, most likely never will. I was totally stoked about this console because...

Take a look....

Yes, it's red! "Is that all? Is this what had you so jazzed?" You are probably asking yourself that right now. And the answer is not just yes, but HELL YES! It matches my kitchen. My Coca-Cola red kitchen.

Now if only I can pull myself away from Facebook and the farming, cooking, and mobbing, then maybe I can get back on my red machine and kick some Uno butt.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Questions To Ask Before Marrying by Melissa Senate

Questions To Ask Before Marrying by Melissa Senate

My Rating: 6 *'s

Description: A New York Times article lists fifteen questions couples should ask before marrying

Ruby Miller and her fiancé, Tom Truby, have questions 1 to 14 almost covered. It's question 15 that has the Maine schoolteacher stumped: Is their relationship strong enough to withstand challenges?

Challenges like…Ruby's twin sister, Stella. The professional muse, flirt and face reader thinks Ruby is playing it safe. And that the future Mrs. Ruby Truby will die of boredom before her first anniversary or her thirtieth birthday, whichever comes first.

Challenges like…sexy maverick teacher Nick McDermott, Ruby's secret longtime crush, who confesses his feelings for her at her own engagement party.

But before Ruby can plan the wedding that may never be, Stella announces she's pregnant by a one-night stand whose name might be Jake (or James? Maybe Jason?) and who lives somewhere under the glittering lights of Las Vegas. Ruby and Stella hit the road to find him—with a lot more than fifteen questions.

And after three thousand miles, a stowaway relative and hitchhiking teen lovebirds bound for an Elvis wedding chapel, the Miller sisters might get some answers.

My Thoughts: OK story about two sisters on a journey of self-discovery while trying to answer many of life's questions before one of them gets married. Couple of twists in the plot I didn't care for that nearly made this book a wallbanger for me. It was difficult at times to connect and relate to the characters.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

New Additions To The TBR Pile in November

Shhh...don't tell on me, but I actually got rid of nearly 100 books in November. Books I knew I wouldn't read.... Hardly seems effective when more show up on my doorstep begging to be let in.

The Gatecrasher by Madeleine Wickham

Description: Everything's coming up roses for Fleur Daxeny, as she goes through more rich men than she does designer hats....if that's humanly possible. Beautiful, charming, and utterly irresistible, her success at crashing funerals to find wealthy men is remarkable. But behind Fleur’s Harvey Nichols wardrobe, is a woman with a mysterious past.

Fleur wastes no time in seducing her latest conquest, the handsome and rich widower Richard Favour, and she swoops into his life like a designer-clad tornado. His children are caught up in a whirlwind as their father's new girlfriend descends on the family estate leaving chaos and excitement in her perfume-scented wake. Soon, more than one family member is suspicious of Fleur's true intentions. Fleur is not one to wear her heart on her Chanel sleeves, but she soon finds herself embracing Richard and his lovable family. But just as Fleur contemplates jumping off the gold-digger train for good and enjoying the ride of true love, a long-buried secret from her past threatens to destroy her new family. Fleur is thrown into a race against time to prove herself to Richard before it's too late. Can she trust her heart or will she cut ties and run away as fast as her Prada pumps can take her?

My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon by Jim Butcher, Kelley Armstrong, et al

Description: What newly married couple doesn't dream of a romantic retreat where they can escape the world for a while—but what happens when supernatural forces intrude on their wedded bliss?

Nine of today's hottest paranormal authors answer that question in this all-star collection of supernatural stories. Can a vampire-hunter enjoy her honeymoon when she's just learned that her new hubby is a werewolf? How can newlyweds focus on their wedding night when their honeymoon suite is haunted by feuding ghosts? And what's a wizard to do when a gruesome monster kidnaps the bride on her way home from the wedding?

With so much otherworldly mayhem awaiting our newlyweds, will they ever get around to the honeymoon itself? Find out in My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon.

Edited by P.N. Elrod
Kelley Armstrong - "Stalked"
Jim Butcher - "Heorot"
Rachel Caine - "Roman holiday, or SPQ-arrrrrr"
P.N. Elrod - "Her Mother's Daughter"
Caitlin Kittredge - "Newlydeads"
Marjorie M. Liu - "Where the Heart Lives"
Katie MacAlister - "Cat got your tongue?"
Lilith Saintcrow - "Half of Being Married"

Killing Bridezilla by Laura Levine

Description: When writer-for-hire Jaine Austen signs on to script vows for the ultimate Bridezilla, "I do's" soon become "I wish I hadn't's"--and curtains for the bride spell a veil of woes for Jaine...
Jaine's accepted her share of lame gigs to pay the bills, but rewriting Shakespeare's got to be an all-time low. The fiasco begins with a call from Jaine's high-school nemesis, uber rich uber witch Patti Devane. It seems Patti will soon be sashaying down the aisle with another former classmate from Hermosa High, and she'd like the exchange of vows to evoke Romeo and Juliet...except without the "downer" of an ending.

Even worse than the assignment itself is dealing with Patti as a client. At least Jaine's not alone, as nobody can stand the demanding, spoiled, and incredibly rude Bridezilla from Hell. Patti's managed to rack up an amazingly long list of enemies in a short time, not the least of whom include her prospective mother-in-law, the soon-to-be ex-wife of Patti's stolen soon-to-be groom, and just about everyone involved in the wedding preparations. So it isn't a complete surprise when the erstwhile Juliet plunges to her death during her balcony scene.

The loosened bolts that brought down the bride were clearly an act of sabotage--what's not so obvious is whom, among Patti's numerous haters, committed this murder most foul. Was it the caterer she threatened to ruin? The bridesmaid tossed out of the wedding party for being too chubby? Jaine's determined to learn the truth--if only to end the hideous walk down memory lane kicked off by her association with Patti.

Between fending off advances from the nerd of her high school nightmares and figuring out ways to stop Prozac the cat from corrupting the victim's pet Poodle, Jaine's involvement in this case keeps veering between comedy and tragedy. That is, until another body is discovered--and the killer starts laying plot for a final act--starring Jaine...

Killer Cuts by Elaine Viets

Description: Helen Hawthorne’s latest dead-end job is in Miguel Angel’s Fort Lauderdale hair salon, where a trim can cost as much as a car payment and a blowout can wipe you out. But when one of the salon’s most famous clients, gossip blogger and cable-TV show host Kingman “King” Oden is murdered at his own wedding, things get a little hairy and King becomes the prime suspect. To save her boss—and her job— Helen is determined to find the murderer. When she finds herself the target of threatening notes, it’s more imperative than ever that she figure out who at the wedding was dressed to kill.

Hollywood Car Wash by Lori Culwell

Description: Amy Spencer is an accidental celebrity. On Monday, she's a normal college student in Michigan. By the end of the week, she's in Hollywood, starring in a TV pilot--as a regular girl from Michigan. It's all fun and games until the show gets picked up and Amy learns the terrible price of stardom--to keep the part she didn't even want at first, she's going to have to get the Hollywood Car Wash to make her more marketable. First, she'll have to lose twenty pounds. She'll also need new teeth, blonder hair, and a megastar boyfriend with a big secret. By changing everything from her weight to her hair to her name, Amy slowly learns that the only way to survive in Hollywood is to lose herself. Inspired by true events, this shockingly accurate novel about the ins and outs of the Hollywood game will leave the reader wondering--who is Star?

Hollywood Car Wash is the first in a series.

Girls Who Gossip by Theresa Alan

Description: It's not mean if it's true...

Yes the rumours are true...

I'm actually coming home to Colorado for the summer. Maybe it won't be so bad. After all, I've got cocktails, shopping, and gab sessions with my girlfriends to look forward to. Plus time with my dysfunctional family. Yippee. I'm Helaina, by the way. Helaina Denner if you've known me since junior high, like Hannah and Marti. Helaina Merrill if you know me from film school at NYU. See, I lead a bit of a double life: "starving" student when in Manhattan, daughter of privilege when in Denver

And it gets even better...

...depending on your definition of "better." First off, I've picked this time to try and reconnect with my father. Which would be easier if we'd ever had anything resembling a relationship to begin with. I guess this is one of the pitfalls of having a parent as rich as Bill Gates and as accessible as the Pope...

Seriously, some of this stuff you cannot repeat...

like what I'll tell you about Owen, the adorable journalist I just met. He's sweet, sincere, sexy...real soul mate material. But something's keeping me from letting him get too close. What's my problem, anyway? No need to answer: that's what friends are for. Now, amid high-altitude parties in Aspen, bikini waxes gone mad, and caught-on-tape blackmail fodder, I'm about to find out exactly what one heiress's problems amount to in this crazy world. Just remember, whatever I discover is off the record - for the moment, at least...

All We Ever Wanted Was Everything by Janelle Brown

Description: When Paul Miller’s pharmaceutical company goes public, making his family IPO millionaires, his wife, Janice, is sure this is the windfall she’s been waiting years for — until she learns, via messengered letter, that her husband is divorcing her (for her tennis partner!) and cutting her out of the new fortune. Meanwhile, four hundred miles south in Los Angeles, the Millers' older daughter, Margaret, has been dumped by her newly famous actor boyfriend and left in the lurch by an investor who promised to revive her fledgling postfeminist magazine. Sliding toward bankruptcy and dogged by creditors, she flees for home where her younger sister Lizzie, 14, is struggling with problems of her own. Formerly chubby, Lizzie has been enjoying her newfound popularity until some bathroom graffiti alerts her to the fact that she’s become the school slut.

The three Miller women retreat behind the walls of their Georgian colonial to wage battle with divorce lawyers, debt collectors, drug-dealing pool boys, mean girls, country-club ladies, their own demons, and one another, and in the process they become achingly sympathetic characters we can’t help but root for—even as the world they live in epitomizes everything wrong with the American Dream. Exhilarating, addictive, and superbly accomplished, All We Ever Wanted Was Everything is an original, utterly modern addition to the genre of suburban fiction.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Haunted In Death by J.D. Robb

Haunted In Death by J.D. Robb

My Rating: 8 *'s

Description: Originally from the Anthology Bump in the Night

Number Twelve is an urban legend in 2060 New York City. The hot club in the 1960s, it is now reported to be haunted…and cursed. Lieutenant Eve Dallas is called there to investigate the apparent murder of Radcliff Hopkins, its new owner and the grandson of the man who made Number Twelve a cultural icon. Several bullets from a banned gun end his dream of returning the building to its former glory.

With everyone around her talking about the supernatural, pragmatic Eve won't let rumors of ghosts distract her from hard evidence. The case becomes even more bizarre when it appears to be linked to the suspicious disappearance of a rock star eighty-five years ago. As Eve searches for the connection, logic clashes with the unexplainable. She may be forced to face the threat of something more dangerous than a flesh-and-blood killer.

My Thoughts: A little different twist on the usual cases we see Dallas and Peabody investigating. This one involves a murder from nearly 100 years ago and a lot of paranormal activity. In spite of the story being short, it managed to draw me in completely and fully hold my interest.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

True Lies Of A Drama Queen by Lee Nichols

True Lies Of A Drama Queen (Red Dress Ink) True Lies Of A Drama Queeen by Lee Nichols

My rating: 10 *'s

Description: Some true lies of a drama queen:

*My name is Elle Medina. (Absolutely true!)

*I'm a professional psychic. (Completely accurate. Except for the "professional" part...and the "psychic" part.)

*I'm planning my best friend's wedding. (Maya only thinks she's planning it.)

*I'm a serious journalist. (I cover crystal therapy for the local weekly rag.)

*I live with my boyfriend, Merrick. (I'm pretty sure he's still my boyfriend.)

She may be lovely and talented but Elle Medina's phone psychic business is sputtering, her boyfriend thinks she's attending graduate school (not exactly) and she's about to ruin her best friend's wedding. Things can't get worse. Can they?

They can and do when Elle's innocent dressing room striptease (oh, like you've never!) ends up on the Internet, and she sets out to find the cyber-creep who put her there. Elle knows coming of age is not a destination but a journey...she's just having a little trouble staying on the road.

My Thoughts: I enjoyed this story more than I enjoyed the first Drama Queen book. Elle is someone who manages to make complete chaos manageable. When everything seems to fall apart around her, she is at the top of her game. I can't help but admire that.

I recommend this author for her fresh and witty storylines, snappy dialogue and characters that are realistic and easy to relate to.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Undead And Unpopular by MaryJanice Davidson

Undead And Unpopular by MaryJanice Davidson

My Rating: 9*'s

Description: As Vampire Queen Betsy Taylor approaches the big three-one (in human years, that is), she has a lot on her plate. There are wedding plans to finalize, with no help from her fiance, Eric. And Betsy has decided to stop drinking blood, something Eric --- the vampire king --- may not understand....

So, when some guests show up uninvited --- and they happen to be the powerful European vampires, who have finally come to pay their respects the week before her birthday --- Betsy gets really cranky...

My Thoughts: More campy and wacky antics occurring when Betsy, the Queen of the Vampires, is approaching her 31st birthday. Adding to her stress is her decision to go blood free, her upcoming wedding and the arrival of a group of European vampires, whose intentions may not be so friendly. And if that's not bad enough, there's a zombie in the attic! Betsy is having a bad day and she really HATES zombies. Really, what else can go wrong? You can't even begin to imagine, so I highly recommend picking up this book to find out.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Dead And Gone by Charlaine Harris

Dead And Gone by Charlaine Harris

My Rating: 9 *'s

Description: 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.

My Thoughts: Enjoying this series more with each book. Though I wasn't a fan of Sookie's relationship with Quinn, I haven't decided if Eric is good for her either but I don't think I want to see her back with Bill. This book brings more hostility out in the open when the weres decide to out themselves. I wasn't surprised at Arlene's reaction as she has been increasingly intolerant with each book since she associated herself with The Fellowship of the Sun. What I found interesting is how the murder of a were-panther is tied to Sookie's past.

Looking forward to Sookie's next adventure.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

New Additions To The TBR Pile in October

Some very promising titles making themselves comfortable in the bottomless pit of Mount TBR...

Dead After Dark by Sherrilyn Kenyon, J.R. Ward, Susan Squires & Dianna Love

Description: With these four tales of paranormal romance, it's never been hotter to be close to death…

SHERRILYN KENYON “Shadow of the Moon”
Angelia has fought her entire life to make herself strong. Now, with her patria under fire, she has to protect her people from Fury and his werewolf clan. Vowing to bring him to justice, Angelia sets out alone… -- until the hunter becomes the hunted, and the only way for her to survive is to trust the very wolf she’s sworn to kill.

J. R. WARD “The Story of Son” Claire
Stroughton is a beautiful lawyer who would rather spend the night with a legal brief than the man of her dreams. Then a routine client meeting turns dangerous— -- and deeply sensual -- —when she is held captive by a gorgeous man with an unworldly hunger…...

SUSAN SQUIRES “Seize the Night”
When Drew Carlowe returns home to win back a lost love, he is quick to dismiss rumors that his estate is haunted by a stunning young ghost... until one passionate encounter leaves him mystified— -- and aching for more.

DIANNA LOVE “Midnight Kiss Goodbye”
Trey McCree possesses an insatiable desire for Sasha Armand— -- and supernatural powers that could endanger her life as a human. But when they team up to stop an evil warlord, Trey discovers that Sasha can do way more than drive men wild…...

Tan Lines by J.J. Salem

Description: Summer just doesn't get any hotter than this.

Liza is beautiful, fearless, and slays rival media commentators with her firebrand feminist spin. So why is it that this summer, in the Hamptons, Liza is falling into all the old traps and cliches that she cautions other women to avoid?

Kellyanne hoped that this summer would be different. Waiting tables and playing mistress to a rich developer helps her to stay afloat before her big break as an actress. But why are the phenomenal looks that were supposed to take her all the way leading her to the edge of disaster?

Billie rocks the indie music scene with an appetite for self-destruction. Sex is candy, drugs are fuel, and even her closest friends are disposable. So how is she supposed to find real success when she's only looking out for number one?

She Who Shops by Joanne Skerrett

Description: Weslee Dunster is one sister who has always been about the practical side, earning her way to Boston University through good, old-fashioned hard work. Who needs Prada when you've got brains, right? Wrong! With her GAP khakis and humble background, Weslee's no match for the wealthy New Englanders who seem to look at her like she's stepped out of a Sears catalogue. The women in Wes's new sphere treat shopping like a contact sport, and they never met a friend they didn't want to trash as soon as her back was turned. And the brothers will snub you for having skin that's a shade past cafe au lait or an accent that's one generation from Jamaica. Now, caught up in a hectic lifestyle filled with designer clothes, expensive highlights, finger-aching bling, air kissing, fine-looking players, lies, betrayals, and other things her once sensible life didn't demand, Wes is in for the ride of her life - one that could have her crashing and burning...unless she can figure out the rules of the game and how to break them...

One Foot In The Grave by Jeaniene Frost

Description: You can run from the grave, but you can't hide...

Half-vampire Cat Crawfield is now Special Agent Cat Crawfield, working for the government to rid the world of the rogue undead. She's still using everything Bones, her sexy and dangerous ex, taught her, but when Cat is targeted for assassination, the only man who can help her is the vampire she left behind.

Being around him awakens all her emotions, from the adrenaline kick of slaying vamps side by side to the reckless passion that consumed them. But a price on her head -- wanted: dead or half-alive -- means her survival depends on teaming up with Bones. And no matter how hard she tries to keep things professional between them, she'll find that desire lasts forever... and that Bones won't let her get away again.

Marked by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast

Description: The House of Night series is set in a world very much like our own, except in 16-year-old Zoey Redbird's world, vampyres have always existed. In this first book in the series, Zoey enters the House of Night, a school where, after having undergone the Change, she will train to become an adult vampire -- that is, if she makes it through the Change. Not all of those who are chosen do. It’s tough to begin a new life, away from her parents and friends, and on top of that, Zoey finds she is no average fledgling. She has been Marked as special by the vampyre Goddess, Nyx. But she is not the only fledgling at the House of Night with special powers. When she discovers that the leader of the Dark Daughters, the school's most elite club, is misusing her Goddess-given gifts, Zoey must look deep within herself for the courage to embrace her destiny -- with a little help from her new vampyre friends.

Finger Lickin' Fifteen by Janet Evanovich

Description: While recovering from an ill-timed makeup mishap, Lula is a witness to celebrity chef, Stanley Chipotle, losing his head - literally. Now Lula and Stephanie are on the hunt to identify the killers before Lula is next on the chopping block.

Meantime, Ranger's recruited Stephanie's help for a top secret mission. Someone on the inside at Rangeman is leaking client information, determined to bring the company down. No one is above suspicion, not even Ranger's right hand man, Tank.

Can Stephanie hunt down a killer, a traitor, five skips and keep Grandma out of the sauce?

It's the sexiest, scariest, most fun Plum yet. So good you'll want seconds.

Dead And Gone by Charlaine Harris

Description: 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.

Bad Moon Rising by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Description: A stunning and suspenseful new landscape emerges in the thrilling Dark-Hunter world—a world where nothing will ever be the same again. . .

Fang Kattalakis isn't just a wolf. He is the brother of two of the most powerful members of the Omegrion: the ruling council that enforces the laws of the Were-Hunters. And when war erupts among the lycanthropes, sides must be chosen. Enemies are forced into shaky alliances. And when the woman Fang loves is accused of betraying her people, her only hope is that Fang believes in her. Yet in order to save her, Fang must break the law of his people and the faith of his brothers. That breech could very well spell the end of both their races and change their world forever.

The war is on and time is running out...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Killer Insight by Victoria Laurie

Killer Insight by Victoria Laurie

My Rating: 9 *'s

Description: A wedding goes awry --- and Abby tunes in to her own reception...

A wedding retreat in Colorado finds Abby Cooper tending a broken heart and taking a mental break, but psychic intuition isn't the sort of thing you can leave at home...


When her relationship with FBI agent Dutch Rivers skids to a halt, Abby Cooper is fully aware that a wedding isn't the best post-breakup scenario. But when a friend from the Mile High City finds herself short one bridesmaid, it doesn't take a professional psychic to see the opportunity for a much-needed getaway.

High altitudes can be healing, and Abby reunites with friends --- especially her childhood crush Duffy McGinnis, now town sheriff ... not to mention tall, dark, and yummy. But Abby needs more than a shoulder to cry on. One bridesmaid after another is mysteriously flying the coop, and Abby's intuition tells her their final destinations aren't pretty.

With the wedding party falling apart and her gift of sight never quite so foggy, Abby has to save the date --- and herself from becoming the next taffeta-clad target...

My Thoughts: I think this one is my favorite so far of the series. Many new characters from Abby's childhood make an appearance and I enjoyed seeing the chemistry between Abby and Duffy. The killer's identity wasn't obvious to me as much as the other books or established early on. I enjoyed how the author weaves multiple plots around Abby to keep things interesting and shrouded in mystery. Overall, I really enjoy this series and recommend it to anyone looking for a cozy mystery with interesting characters and stories.

Finger Lickin' Fifteen by Janet Evanovich

Finger Lickin' Fifteen by Janet Evanovich

My Rating: 10 *'s

Description: While recovering from an ill-timed makeup mishap, Lula is a witness to celebrity chef, Stanley Chipotle, losing his head - literally. Now Lula and Stephanie are on the hunt to identify the killers before Lula is next on the chopping block.

Meantime, Ranger's recruited Stephanie's help for a top secret mission. Someone on the inside at Rangeman is leaking client information, determined to bring the company down. No one is above suspicion, not even Ranger's right hand man, Tank.

Can Stephanie hunt down a killer, a traitor, five skips and keep Grandma out of the sauce?

It's the sexiest, scariest, most fun Plum yet. So good you'll want seconds.

My Thoughts: The wackiness and hilarity abound when Stephanie finds herself on the outs with Morelli, back working close, very close, with Ranger and saving Lula from being murdered by the same goons who killed Stanley Chipotle.

One of the main things I love about this series is that no matter how bizarre and off the wall each story is, I thoroughly enjoy each one. I savor every moment, wondering how many cars Stephanie will go through, how many times Grandma will pull out her .44 and shoot something or someone, how many times Ranger says "Babe" the way only Ranger can, how many times Bob the Dog takes a dump on someone's lawn, or how many times Morelli calls Stephanie "Cupcake."

If I were a petty person, I could hate Stephanie. A lot. Here's a woman who appears to have it all ... a fun job that she pretty much sets her own hours and which brings levels of excitement left to the imagination; not one, but TWO gorgeous and successful men lusting after her, all the home cooked meals she can eat but doesn't have to cook. She manages to land on her feet regardless of who is trying to kill her or who she is trying to bring in and having yet another one of Ranger's cars get blown up doesn't seem to deter her either. Yeah, I could hate her, but I can't. I admire her strength, her spunk and feisty attitude.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Vision Of Murder by Victoria Laurie

A Vision Of Murder by Victoria Laurie

My Rating: 9 *'s

Description: If these walls could talk...

Professional psychic Abby Cooper is planning to fix up an old house and make a killing in the real estate market --- until she encounters a killing of another kind...


When Abby gets roped into investing in a fixer-upper, she has no idea she'll go from real estate mogul to real-life ghostbuster. After the deal is closed, phantom inhabitants of the house replay a violent night from long ago that ended in the murder of a beautiful blonde. The only way to evict the house's spectral tenants --- and save Abby's handyman from flying drills --- is to uncover the dead woman's identity and solve her murder.

Aided by her boyfriend, sexy FBI agent Dutch Rivers, Abby discovers the key to the puzzle is a hidden treasure lost since World War II. Unfortunately, Abby's not the only one intent on finding it. As she gets closer to the truth, a madman shadows her every move. Now a race is on to find the treasure and solve the mystery --- and only the winner will survive....

My Thoughts: I'm really enjoying this series and especially like the premise of a psychic and her FBI agent boyfriend. I find Abby to be a very likable character though in this book, she uses a lot of bad judgment and little common sense and finds herself in several risky and dangerous situations while she is engaged in discovering the source of the spooky incidents that have been occurring at the investment property that Abby bought into with her sister, Cat and handyman, Dave.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Bad Moon Rising by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Bad Moon Rising by Sherrilyn Kenyon

My Rating: 10 *'s

Description: A stunning and suspenseful new landscape emerges in the thrilling Dark-Hunter world—a world where nothing will ever be the same again. . .

Fang Kattalakis isn't just a wolf. He is the brother of two of the most powerful members of the Omegrion: the ruling council that enforces the laws of the Were-Hunters. And when war erupts among the lycanthropes, sides must be chosen. Enemies are forced into shaky alliances. And when the woman Fang loves is accused of betraying her people, her only hope is that Fang believes in her. Yet in order to save her, Fang must break the law of his people and the faith of his brothers. That breech could very well spell the end of both their races and change their world forever.

The war is on and time is running out...

My Thoughts: Yeah, Dark-Hunters, gotta love 'em! But lovin me some Wolves even more! Woof... Vane has been my favorite throughout the entire series (sorry Ash), but Fang is right up there in the number 2 spot with Fury right behind him. With Bad Moon Rising, Sherrilyn Kenyon takes us back to the past where we get a bird's eye view of Vane's pack and his brother, Fang. Who knew when I read Vane's story that a true gem existed beneath the surface of Fang's persona?

Throw into the mix the Peltier Bears and you are in for one fast paced and intense ride. As always, it was great to reunite with the regulars and bittersweet to see some others. Very curious about some of the new characters, such as Thorn. Definitely a story there and I still am hopeful that we will get to know Savitar better and see his story.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Charmed & Dangerous by Candace Havens

Charmed & Dangerous by Candace Havens

My Rating: 9 *'s

Description: Being a witch can really put a jinx on your love life....

Monday, 11 P.M.
Sweet Texas
Spells: 2
Dead guys: 0
Cute guys I want to sleep with: 1

I know my purpose: To rid the world of evil, one bad guy at a time.

When I turned twenty I took the oath to protect, and for the last five years I've kept that promise. Currently, I've got a gig as a kind of one-witch secret service to the British Prime Minister --- using a combination of potions, spells, explosions, mind-reading, and general butt-kicking skills. I've saved him from so many assassins we've quit counting. Umm, did I mention explosions? Yeah, well, we all have our talents, and mine's combustion.

After that recent incident when those stupid warlocks tried to sacrifice me, I decided I'm going to write everything down. That way if some creep knocks me off, someone will know what happened. But hoefully this diary won't be all about maiming and killing. I'd like to write some sexy bits, too. Especially about Dr. Sam, who's smart, funny, adorable, everything I'd want in a man --- except he's a warlock. Sorry, that's a big no-no in Bronwyn's book of dating material. I might as well face it: Witches don't do so well in the boyfriend department. Somehow, men find me a tad intimidating. I can't imagine why...

My Thoughts: The description of this book doesn't give justice to how entertaining this story turned out to be. This is the first book in a series about a high witch who has taken an oath to use her powers to protect the innocent and rid the world of evil. But that doesn't even scratch the surface. Bronwyn has a feisty spirit who finds herself literally in the middle between two men who both want her, one is a Warlock who she knows she shouldn't have feelings for but does and the other is an Arab Sheik who she is hired to protect and doesn't believe in mixing business with pleasure. As if that weren't enough, she is trying to figure out who is trying to kill her and they definitely aren't messing around.

Included in the story is a cast of supporting characters that are written so realistically that I found myself drawn into the story and able to relate to these people.

If you are looking for a paranormal romance series that delivers spunky and feisty characters, witty dialogue, great magical battles and romance, then look no further!

Friday, October 09, 2009

Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer

Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer

My Rating: 9 *'s

Description: Readers captivated by Twilight and New Moon will eagerly devour Eclipse, the much anticipated third book in Stephenie Meyer's riveting vampire love saga. As Seattle is ravaged by a string of mysterious killings and a malicious vampire continues her quest for revenge, Bella once again finds herself surrounded by danger. In the midst of it all, she is forced to choose between her love for Edward and her friendship with Jacob --- knowing that her decision has the potential to ignite the ageless struggle between vampire and werewolf. With her graduation quickly approaching, Bella has one more decision to make: life or death. But which is which?

My Thought: So far, Eclipse is my favorite of the Twilight series. I did think Bella was a bit indecisive, which I found annoying at times. Looking forward to where the series will take me next.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

My Life Uncovered by Lynn Isenberg

My Life Uncovered by Lynn Isenberg

My Rating: 8 *'s


PROD.: My Life Uncovered

Laura Taylor thought she had a done deal with a Hollywood producer. Turns out the only deal her agent closed was his own disappearing act. (Rumor has it he's in rehab somewhere in North Dakota.) But a chance encounter with a "guy who knows a guy" opens up a world of opportunities for Laura and gives her a chance to break into films -- adult films. (Someone actually writes those things?) Hey, a job's a job, and no one has to know about it. She'll write under a pseudonym. And it'll only be this one time....

Pretty soon, Laura's new career takes off and she finds herself leading a double life: pitching her legitimate screenplay in one part of town while playing the belle of the ball in another. Sure, she's always wanted the awards, the success, the attention, but it isn't exactly something she can write home about, and for once she's trying NOT to get noticed. After all, if her worlds collide, her future in Hollywood could get an X rating.

MY LIFE UNCOVERED is a Hollywood insider's deliciously witty account of the real-life, heartbreaking, dream-inspiring world of filmmaking.

My Thoughts: Definitely not what I was expecting and I was surprised in a good way. Here is a character that brings together the adult entertainment industry with self discovery, while trying to find success and acceptance as a screenwriter among the Hollywood sharks. I found it very interesting that our heroine protagonist finds that success and acceptance first and foremost in the adult entertainment world. I enjoyed watching Laura balance both sides of her life and the reactions of those around her when they discovered the genre of the films she is writing.

Along the way, Laura discovers a lot about herself and the relationships she has with her colleagues, family, friends and lovers, both past and present. I found the story to be realistic and was able to empathize with Laura as she tried to acclimate herself to the kind of writing and filmmaking she least expected to take on, much less excel at.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

New Additions To The TBR Pile In September

Quite proud of myself this month that my new additions didn't exceed the number read. :o)

The Pre-Nup by Beth Kendrick

Description: Something borrowed, something blue, something to sign before they say "I do"...

All you need is love? For the residents of swanky Mayfair Estates, a pre-nup is just another item on the wedding to-do checklist --- but three friends get more than they bargained for when they promise to love, cherish ... and sign on the dotted line.

Ellie married her handsome, wealthy Prince Charming when she was young, naive, and willing to sign a one-sided pre-nup in the name of true love. But seven years and one toddler later, her happily-ever-after has come screeching to a halt. If she can't save her marriage, she's determined to save her divorce.

When Jen married Eric, he knew she wasn't head over heels. Still, he insisted that they were perfect together and even bankrolled her blossoming business. But when Jen's career finally takes off, she soon sees that she may lose the husband she loves more than she realized --- and everything else she's worked for.

Up-and-coming attorney Mara is sure her fiance has foriven her for a foolish one-night fling ---until he adds a "cheating clause" to the pre-nup she had demanded. If he really trusts her, why the clause? And if she's really trustworthy, why is she objecting?

As romance collides with real life, three very different women turn to each other for moral support and insights about how to safeguard their most valuable assets: their hearts.

My Three Husbands by Swan Adamson

Description: As wry and witty as a night of cosmopolitans with your best girlfriend, Swan Adamson's debut novel introduces an unforgettable heroine in Venus Gilroy--a woman whose heart is in the right place even if her shoes, her past, and her taste in men are all wrong.


Twenty-five year old Venus Gilroy is hardly the traditional blushing bride. With two starter marriages behind her, several tattoos, hair the color of sherbert, and a job at an adult video store called Phantastic Phantasy, she's a wedding planner's nightmare. It doesn't help that her fiance, Tremaynne, is a penniless "alternative media star" whose claim to fame is three months in a tree as an environmental activist. . .or that her eccentric mother is deep into clown therapy. . .or that her two fathers--her dad and his lover, her "faux pa"--have offered to pay for a luxurious honeymoon at the exclusive Pine Mountain Lodge. There's only one little catch: the dads want to come along. ...


Now, in the wilds of Idaho, where the country's hottest new spa is surrounded by disgruntled locals, wacky paramilitary troups, and eco-warriors, the honeymoon from hell is just beginning. Venus is mistaken for an erotic Icelandic rock star. Tremaynne is up to something mysterious and probably highly illegal. Her Armani-clad dads are determined to transform their punk princess little girl into a card-carrying. Jackie O Club woman. And a gorgeous Italian prince would give anything for one night alone with Venus. As her idyllic escape morphs into a retreat from anything resembling sanity, it's time for Venus to take a stand and confront her biggest fear of all. . .growing up. . .

All Eyes On Her by Poonam Sharma

Description: Revenge is sweet, but sabotage is more entertaining

In this town, nice gets you nowhere...

As a junior associate at the most-sought-after marital mediation and divorce boutique in Beverly Hills, Monica is part mediator, part lawyer, part marriage therapist and all celebrity babysitter. She's so good at her job that she's handling the firm's superstar clients Cameron and Lydia Johnson -- Hollywood It couple -- Camydia. Although things would be easier if the only other female associate would stop sabotaging her career, and if the drama queen she refers to as mother wasn't moving back home!

When the latest Camydia scandal breaks wide open, it's time for Monica to save the day, to don her Prada cape and matching bag, then wreak havoc on her office rival and run circles around the paparazzi.

Everyone's watching to see what Monica will do;... hey, are those claws on that French manicure?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Girls' Night In by Jennifer Weiner, Sophie Kinsella, et al

Girls' Night In by Jennifer Weiner, Sophie Kinsella, et al

My Rating: 10 *'s


In this must-have short-story collection, Jennifer Weiner revisits one of her GOOD IN BED characters (and tells the story from, ahem, HIS point of view), Jill A Davis (GIRLS' POKER NIGHT) offers a darkly humerous take on starting over in New York and working with "the Elizabeths," and Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez (THE DIRTY GIRLS SOCIAL CLUB) muses on how different the words LADY and WOMAN are when paired with CAT.

GIRLS' NIGHT IN features stories about growing up, growing out of, moving out, moving on, falling apart and getting it all together. So turn off your cell phone and curl up on the couch: this is one GIRLS' NIGHT IN you won't want to miss.

* Jennifer Weiner * Sophie Kinsella * Meg Cabot * Jessica Adams * Louise Bagshawe * Emily Barr * Jenny Colgan * Lynda Curnyn * Jill A Davis * Stella Duffy * Lauren Henderson * Lisa Jewell * Marian Keyes * Adele Lang * Chris Manby * Carole Matthews * Anna Maxted * Megan McCafferty * Sarah Mlynowski * Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez * Isabel Wolff

* Edited by Lauren Henderson, Chris Manby and Sarah Mlynowski

Net proceeds to benefit War Child.

My Thoughts: Really enjoyed this collection of short stories from some of the best chick-lit authors on the market. I normally don't like anthologies but found this one to be very entertaining. I'm looking forward to reading the follow-up, GIRL'S NIGHT OUT.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

One Silent Night by Sherrilyn Kenyon

One Silent Night by Sherrilyn Kenyon

My Rating: 10 *'s

Description: In the world of the Dark-Hunters, all hell's breaking loose...

Stryker has sent word and is gathering his forces.

While the world carries on unawares, Stryker, who leads an army of demons and vampires, is plotting an all out onslaught against his enemies-which, unfortunately for us, includes the entire human race.

To avenge his sister, Stryker prepares to annihilate the Dark-Hunters. But things go awry when his oldest enemy returns. Enter his ex-wife. Zephyra. Just when he thought nothing could stop him, he's now embroiled in a centuries old war with a shrew who gives new meaning to pain.

My Thoughts: The first surprise of this book was that I could actually feel any empathy whatsoever for Stryker, whom I have felt had no redeeming qualities at all. Throughout this entire series, Stryker has been a royal pain in my reading pleasure and I'm sure all of the Dark-Hunters would agree.

Readers are given a front row seat into the life of Stryker and the woman he loved and eventually betrayed. Though I cannot approve of what Stryker and his Daimons do, I now have a better understanding of what compels them.

It was good to see Nick again and learning more about his origins was quite alot to take in so I'm definitely looking forward to reading his story and I'm still hopeful that he and Ash can make peace. Some new characters that I would like to see in upcoming books as well as some of the recurring ones I still enjoy.

All in all, a great story full of the stuff that the fans of Dark-Hunters love and have come to expect. All that is left is wanting more.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Memory In Death by J.D. Robb

Memory In Death by J.D. Robb

Rating: 10 *'s

Description: The bestselling author of SURVIVOR IN DEATH has Lieutenant Eve Dallas walking a tightrope between her professional duties and her private demons.

Eve Dallas is one tough cop. She's got no problem dealing with a holiday reveler in a red suit who plunges thirty-seven stories and gives new meaning to the term "sidewalk Santa." But when she gets back to the station and Trudy Lombard shows up, it's all Eve can do to hold it together. Instantly, she's thrown back into the past, to the days when she was a vulnerable, traumatized girl -- trapped in foster care with the twisted woman who now sits in front of her, smiling.

Trudy claims she just wanted to see how Eve was doing. But Eve's husband, Roarke, suspects otherwise -- and his suspicions prove correct when Trudy arrives at his office, demanding money in exchange for keeping the ugly details of his wife's childhood a secret. Barely restraining himself, Roarke shows her the door -- and makes it clear that she'd be wise to get out of New York and never bother him or his wife again.

But just a few days later, Trudy's found on the floor of her hotel room, a mess of bruises and blood. A cop to the core, Eve is determined to solve the case, if only for the sake of Trudy's bereaved son. Unfortunately, Eve is not the only one to have suffered at this woman's hands, and she and Roarke will follow a circuitous, dangerous path to find out who turned this victimizer into a victim.

My Thoughts: Wow, what an intense installment. This story brings more of Eve's past into the present when she receives an unexpected and unwanted visit from her foster mother, Trudy Lombard. The reunion is anything but joyous and Trudy's intentions are quickly discovered when she attempts to extort $2 million from Roark in exchange for keeping the details of Eve's past out of the media. Naturally, Roark is unwilling to capitulate to her demands and she leaves. Eve and Roark realize they need to pay Trudy a visit to tell her that they will not pay her demands and discover she has been murdered.

Who else hated Trudy Lombard enough to want her dead? Eve's list of suspects grow as she looks into Trudy's past and every child she fostered becomes a suspect, including Trudy's son, Bobby and his wife.

The identity of the killer came as a complete surprise. I love how this series continues to hold my interest.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

New Additions To The TBR Pile in August

The Butcher Of Beverly Hills by Jennifer Colt

Description: Two pairs of private eyes are better than one...


Meet Kerry and Terry McAfee --- identical twin sisters who have nothing in common save their red hair and California-girl looks. Kerry's the good girl, a straight-A student who won a scholarship to UCLA. Terry's the bad girl, whose appetite for nose candy won her a spot in the slammer. When Terry gets out of jail, the twins decide to open their own business as private investigators --- and soon they're keeping L.A. safe with the help of their trusty sidekicks, a Pomeranian name Paquito and a pug named Muffy.

When wealthy socialite Lenore Richling's twentysomething gold-digging boy toy of a husband absconds with ten thousand dollars' worth of her jewelry, she does what anyone in her position would do: she checks herself in for a plastic surgery shopping spree, then calls the McAfee twins for help. While Lenore recuperates from her face-lift in a luxury hotel, the gals hop on their hot-pink Harley-Davidson and begin investigating a bevy of suspicious characters, including Barbie, a bimbo beauty consultant with buns of steel; Daniel Hattrick, a painkiller-pushing plastic surgeon, and Hugh Binion, a silver-haired, snake-tongued Hollywood attorney. Before they know it, the twins are wading in dead husbands, purloined cash, crotchless panties, mystery pills, and a body count high enough to make even tough cookies like them a little squeamish.

With a razor-sharp wit that brilliantly brings to life L.A.'s most eccentric personalities, The Butcher Of Beverly Hills marks the debut of two of the hottest sleuths since Stephanie Plum --- and delivers a fast-paced, highly original take that will keep you guessing until the very end.

Smashed Squashed Splattered Chewed Chunked And Spewed by Lance Carbuncle

Description: Idjit Galoot has a problem. He escaped from his master's house for a brief romp around town, seeking out easy targets such as bitches in heat, fresh roadkill and unguarded garbage cans. When he returns to his house, the aged basset hound discovers that his master has packed up their belongings and moved to Florida without him. "Smashed, Squashed, Splattered, Chewed, Chunked and Spewed" is the story of Idjit Galoot's ne'er do well owner and his efforts to work his way back to the dog that he loves. Along the way, Idjit's owner encounters Christian terrorists, swamp-dwelling taxidermists, carnies, a b-list poopie-groupie, bluesmen on the run from a trickster deity, and the Florida Skunk Ape.

Confessions Of A Pregnant Princess by Swan Adamson

Description: When Marcello Brunelli --- aka II Principe of one of Italy's oldest and most fabulous families --- declared his love to down-on-her-luck, done-with-men Venus Gilroy, she learned a few eyebrow-raising things about love and life. And now she's willing to share...


When a prince invites you to his place, it's not for take-out Chinese and a DVD. No, Marcello flew me home, a sprawling palace where we could be under the same roof and still a mile away from each other. It was a far cry from my ratty apartment and my usual luck with men. Turns out Marcello wanted me to teach him about slacking while he did his suave Italian best to seduce me...


Prince or not, Marcello was an everyday workaholic. Well, "everyday" in the "jetting off and meeting with other captains of industry" sense. Which left me noddling around the palazzo with his suspicious adult daughter, his more-royal-than-thou mother ---- and Johnny, his hot-and-hunky chauffeur, as my Vespa-driving tour guide.


Romance and Rome match up like a little black dress on a blonde, and it didn't take long for me to fall head over high heels for Marcello --- for real. But sometimes even fairy tales can surprise you...

Chasing Harry Winston by Lauren Weisberger

Description: The bestselling author of The Devil Wears Prada and Everyone Worth Knowing returns with the story of three best friends who vow to change their entire lives...and change them fast.

Emmy is newly single, and not by choice. She was this close to the ring and the baby she's wanted her whole life when her boyfriend left her for his twenty-three-year-old personal trainer -- whose fees are paid by Emmy. With her plans for the perfect white wedding in the trash, Emmy is now ordering takeout for one. Her friends insist an around-the-world sex-fueled adventure will solve all her problems -- could they be right?

Leigh, a young star in the publishing business, is within striking distance of landing her dream job as senior editor and marrying her dream guy. And to top it all off, she has just purchased her dream apartment. Only when Leigh begins to edit the enfant terrible of the literary world, the brilliant and brooding Jesse Chapman, does she start to notice some cracks in her perfect life...

Adriana is the drop-dead-gorgeous daughter of a famous supermodel. She possesses the kind of feminine wiles made only in Brazil, and she never hesitates to use them. But she's about to turn thirty and -- as her mother keeps reminding her -- she won't have her pick of the men forever. Everyone knows beauty is ephemeral and there's always someone younger and prettier right around the corner. Suddenly she's wondering...does Mother know best?

These three very different girls have been best friends for a decade in the greatest city on earth. As they near thirty, they're looking toward their future...but despite all they've earned -- first-class travel, career promotions, invites to all the right parties, and luxuries small and large -- they're not quite sure they like what they see...

One Saturday night at the Waverly Inn, Adriana and Emmy make a pact: within a single year, each will drastically change her life. Leigh watches from the sidelines, not making any promises, but she'll soon discover she has the most to lose. Their friendship is forever, but everything else is on the table. Three best friends. Two resolutions. One year to pull it off.

Carbs And Cadavers by J.B. Stanley

Description: Except for an extra fifty pounds, former English Lit professor James Henry hasn't got much left to lose. Recently divorced, he's left the university job he loved and returned to his hometown to care for his cranky widowed father. To improve his social life and his waistline, James joins a new supper club for dieters where he meets Lucy Hanover, an attractive woman who works in the sheriff's department and dreams of becoming a deputy someday. When someone mysteriously drops dead in the Sweet Tooth Bakery, James and his fellow dieters find themselves in the midst of a sticky murder investigation. Dodging delectable temptations, savory treats, and bullets, the supper club members must turn up the heat to find the killer.

Notes From The Backseat by Jody Gehrman

Notes From The Backseat by Jody Gehrman

My Rating: 8*'s

Description: Keep your friends close…and the blondes closer.

I thought I knew everything about Gwen Matson. We’ve been best friends since sophomore year at Analy High. I know her to be smart and confident with a retro style that would give Jackie O a run for her money --- albeit a graceful, sweat-free run in kitten heels.

Not once did she ever display a rabid need to record every detail of her existence. But never before had she gone on a weekend road trip with her amazing boyfriend, Coop … and his evil, yoga-toned best friend, Devil Blonde Dannika. Now she’s writing to me like mad.

Not that I’m complaining. I’m in gay Paris (good), meeting my future in-laws (bad), so her tireless scribbling is keeping us both sane.

Usually, a well-thought-out What Would Jackie Do? Helps Gwen pull it together. But this crisis is beyond help. I know Gwen and Coop are meant to be, but can their love withstand Gwen’s psycho jealousy and Dannika’s twisted sabotage.

My Thoughts: Cute and entertaining story about a woman with an antique clothing fetish and major trust issues who is forced to face her insecurities when she goes on a weekend road trip to attend a wedding with her boyfriend and his best friend, who is also a gorgeous, beautiful blonde. Gwen is relegated to the back seat cramped in between two surfboards, where she feels like the proverbial third wheel. She begins journaling her feelings and by the end of the story, she has filled several journals.

I enjoyed how the book is laid out like a journal as letters to her best friend, Marla. The tension between Gwen and Dannika was realistic. It's too bad my back won't allow me to wear kitten heels as I really would love to have the leopard print pair that Gwen favors.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Origin In Death by J.D. Robb

Origin In Death by J.D. Robb

My Rating: 10*'s

Description: Set in 2059 in New York City, the number-one bestselling In Death series has given fans a searing glimpse into near-future law and order. Now, as scientists work to expand the limits of technology, Detective Eve Dallas tracks the cunning, cold-blooded killer of a father and son.

A pioneer of modern reconstructive and cosmetic surgery, Dr. Wilfred B. Icove, is found dead in his office -- murdered in a chillingly efficient manner: one swift stab to the heart. Struck by the immaculate condition of the crime scene, Dallas suspects a professional killing. Security disks show a stunningly beautiful woman calmly entering and leaving the building -- the good doctor's final appointment.

Known as "Dr. Perfect," the saintly Icove devoted his life to his family and his work. His record is clean. Too clean for Dallas. She knows he was hiding something and suspects that his son -- and successor -- knows what it is. Then, like father, like son, the young Dr. Icove is killed... with the same deadly precision.

But who is the mystery woman -- and what was her relationship with the good doctors? While her husband, Roarke, works behind the scenes, Dallas follows her darkest instincts into the Icoves' pasts. What she discovers are men driven to create perfection -- playing fast and loose with the laws of nature, the limits of science, and the morals of humanity.

In "a series that gets better with each book" (Publishers Weekly), ORIGIN IN DEATH proves once again the incredible appeal of Eve Dallas and the bestselling popularity of her creator. Whether writing as herself or as J. D. Robb, Nora Roberts continues to push the boundaries of suspense -- and she takes delighted fans along for the ride.

My Thoughts: A fantastic installment that pulls Eve, Roark and company into the world of genetic cloning and what else --- murder! What starts out as a typical homicide investigation for Eve quickly spirals into a whirlpool of family secrets, ethics and integrity issues that pull Eve into different directions as she must confront her own ethics and integrity while making judgments on others.

Throwing into the mix is the arrival of Roark's LARGE extended family from Ireland to celebrate Thanksgiving, which pleases Roark to no end but has Eve struggling to take it all in, especially the children. I am thoroughly enjoying watching how Eve and Roark handle themselves around children. It's very entertaining and laughed quite a few times. Better them than me.

If you haven't read this series before, give yourself a treat and start. You won't be disappointed.


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I am not a professional reviewer, but I love to read and share my opinions on my reading with others who are interested. I work full time but my ideal perfect day would be to curl up with a good book. The majority of the books I review here are from my private collection and my reviews are provided purely for entertainment purposes. I receive no compensation whatsoever for sharing my thoughts and review on any book. If you would like me to review your book, please email me at Happy Reading! :o)