Wednesday, June 24, 2009

New Moon by Stephenie Meyer

New Moon by Stephenie Meyer

My Rating: 8 *'s

Description: I FELT LIKE I WAS TRAPPED IN ONE OF THOSE TERRIFYING NIGHTMARES...the one where you have to run, run till your lungs burst, but you can't make your body move fast enough...But this was no dream, and, unlike the nightmare, I wasn't running for my life; I was racing to save something infinitely more precious. My own life meant little to me today.

For Bella Swan, there is one thing more important than life itself: Edward Cullen. But being in love with a vampire is even more dangerous than Bella ever could have imagined. Edward has already rescued Bella from the clutches of one evil vampire, but now, as their daring relationship threatens all that is near and dear to them, they realize their troubles may be just beginning...

My Thoughts: enjoyed the first book in the series more, though this story reveals more details about Jacob and his tribe. Bella & Edward spend a great deal of the book apart so that is probably why I didn't connect to the story as much and Bella comes across as very needy in this book. Besides Jacob and Bella, I wonder if anyone else in Forks know that the Cullens are vampires. The numerous references to Romeo & Juliet started to get a little old too by the end of the story.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Just Take My Heart by Mary Higgins Clark

Just Take My Heart by Mary Higgins Clark

My Rating: 6 *'s

Description: Natalie Raines, one of Broadway's brightest stars, accidentally discovers who killed her former roommate and sets in motion a series of shocking events that puts more than one life in extreme peril.

While Natalie and her roommate, Jamie Evans, were both struggling young actresses, Jamie had been involved with a mysterious married man to whom she referred only by nickname. Natalie comes face to face with him years later and inadvertently addresses him by the nickname Jamie had used. A few days later, Natalie is found in her home in Closter, New Jersey, dying from a gunshot wound.

Immediately the police suspect Natalie's theatrical agent and soon-to-be-ex-husband, Gregg Aldrich. He had long been a "person of interest" and was known to have stalked Natalie to find out if she was seeing another man. But no charges are brought against him until two years later, when Jimmy Easton, a career criminal, suddenly comes forward to claim that Aldrich had tried to hire him to kill his wife. Easton knows details about the Aldrich home that only someone who had been there -- to plan a murder, for instance -- could possibly know.

The case is a plum assignment for Emily Wallace, an attractive thirty-two-year-old assistant prosecutor. As she spends increasingly long hours preparing for the trial, a seemingly well-meaning neighbor offers to take care of her dog in her absence. Unaware of his violent past, she gives him a key to her home...

As Aldrich's trial is making headlines, her boss warns Emily that this high-profile case will reveal personal matters about her, such as the fact that she had a heart transplant. And, during the trial, Emily experiences sentiments that defy all reason and continue after Gregg Aldrich's fate is decided by the jury.

In the meantime, she does not realize that her own life is now at risk.

My Thoughts: Not bad. A few predictable events and a few surprises. One thing that annoyed me in this book is all the unnecessary inner monologue about what another character is wearing. Who cares what color a character's scarf is and whether or not another character thinks it suits her? It's not relevant to the story! I'm seeing this pattern more and more with this author and I don't know why she's employing this technique.

Overall, the story would have been much better if there had been less time spent on the inner monologue stuff. My attention seemed to wander more because of it.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

New Additions To The TBR Pile In May

Help! I'm a bookaholic and I need intervention.... :o)

Ultra Violet by Nancy Bush

Description: For process server-turned private investigator, Jane Kelly, weddings are murder. Usually that's a metaphor, but for newly minted P.I. Jane Kelly, it's fast becoming an all-too-accurate nightmare. Roland Hatchmere, plastic surgery magnate, has been found murdered just before his daughter's society wedding. The weapon is a wedding gift: a heavy, silver serving tray. The prime suspect is Roland's ex-wife #2: Violet "Ultraviolet" Purcell, she of the eccentric-bordering-on-insane Purcell clan.

Violet insists that she's completely innocent. After all, Roland was her absolute favorite ex-husband. And she was nowhere NEAR him at the time of the murder. Well, okay, technically she did meet him for a little pre-nup, bedroom tete-a-tete just before. And they did have a huge fight. And she did hit him with the tray. But just once. Honest. So could Jane just hurry up and prove her innocence? Sure. That should be easy. Let's just file this one under "12 Kinds of Crazy." But when Jane's boss, the temporarily side-lined Dwayne, is convinced Violet's telling the truth, well, there's nothing for Jane to do but take her lovable, misfit pug, Binky, and sniff out a few clues.

Everywhere Jane and The Binkster look, there's a suspect odder than the last, including two grown, very troubled kids, an ex-wife strung out on Botox and a current wife who's a cross between Donna Reed and a sex kitten --- all of them eager to blame Roland's death on Violet. It doesn't help that Violet's story keeps changing faster than a celebrity's hair extensions. To make matters worse, Dwayne's convalescence is turning him into Jimmy Stewart in "Rear Window," complete with binoculars, and he's convinced there is something very bad going down in the private houses across Lakewood Bay, something that needs Jane and Binky's close attention. Faster than she can say, "I took criminology courses for this?", Jane is up to her eyeballs in lies, secrets, Extreme Botox, New Wave bands, truck-stop coffee kiosks (don't ask), very good scones, Junior League, wedding bandits, high school sociopaths, Plastic Pet Cemetary (don't ask, part II), a budding attraction to her boss, the Millionaire's Club, and someone who would kill to keep the past buried.

The deeper Jane digs, the less she wants to know. Every truth leads her deeper into danger, and soon, Jane wonders if her first official case migh also be her last ... and if the client she's been asked to clear just might be the coldest black widow of all....

Super Mom Saves The World by Melanie Lynne Hauser

Description: The action never stops for Birdie Lee, divorced mother of two who became a superpowered suburban avenger after a Horrible Swiffer Accident. Busily fund-raising for a brand-new stadium where the kids can play ball, she's also planning a wedding to her very own Super Man. But soon her Super Mom Sense warns her that something's wrong with the new stadium. And when she investigates, a shadowy figure tries to toss Super Mom out of the game for good....

Secrets Of A Shoe Addict by Beth Harbison

Description: Every woman has a secret. The question is: How far will she go to make sure it stays secret?

Abbey Walsh never wanted anyone to find out about her shady past. After all, she's the wife of a minister now, living an exemplary life. That is, until someone shows up from her past with blackmail in mind . . .

Tiffany Vanderslice Dreyer never dreamed that she'd find herself up to her new designer sunglasses in credit card debt from one mad moment of a shopping spree. She's an upstanding wife and mother with the perfect marriage . . . right?

Loreen Murphy hadn't meant to hire a male prostitute in Las Vegas. It was all just a big, stupid, and expensive misunderstanding. . . .

Abbey, Tiffany, and Loreen are each in need of thousands of dollars and fast. Tiffany's sister, Sandra, has the perfect idea. It's fast, it's easy, it's legal, and it's the secret that kept her shoe addiction alive. It's the perfect plan. . . .

In this deliciously sassy novel, three very different women bond when they find themselves in more than one kind of trouble. It's the story of how sometimes you have a secret that can get you in---and out---of dire straits. It's about romance, friendship, kids, revenge, affairs, and, most of all, a love of the well-heeled things in life.

Real Vampires Get Lucky by Gerry Bartlett

Description: After four hundred years, you'd think that by now I'd be able to know trouble when I smelled it...

Blood. Type B. Human. Coming from the alley behind my shop. A female loan shark named Lucky had been attacked and left for dead. To save her, I, Glory St. Clair, did something I never ever wanted to resort to. I turned a human into a vampire. It's not that I regret changing Lucky. I had no choice. I will say though, eternity would have been safer without her.

Vamps prefer a low profile. Not Lucky. So what if she has a sexy rock star ex-boyfriend and great shoes? Who died and made her Queen of the Damned? Her flamboyant behavior is not only drawing every vampire hunter within miles --- it's bringing her would-be killer out of hiding too.

Good news is, Lucky's mobster father is offering a big reward to catch him. Bad news is, underworlds are about to collide --- and the odds aren't exacly in my favor.

From Dead To Worse by Charlaine Harris

Description: After the natural disaster of Hurricane Katrina, and the manmade horror of the explosion at the vampire summit, Sookie Stackhouse is safe but dazed, yearning for things to get back to normal. But her boyfriend Quinn is among the missing. And things are changing, whether the weres and vamps in her corner of Louisiana like it or not. In the ensuing battles, Sookie faces danger, death…and once more, betrayal by someone she loves. And when the fur has finished flying and the cold blood ceases flowing, her world will be forever altered.

Frogs & French Kisses by Sarah Mlynowski

Description: Okay, I've finally come to terms with the outrageously unfair fact that my younger sister, Miri, has inherited magical powers from our mom. But now the whole witchcraft thing is spiraling out of control! My mom is a magicaholic, Miri's on a Save the World kick, and the one teeny tiny love spell that I begged for has gone horribly wrong. Embarrassingly wrong. Wrong!

Suddenly, the fate of everything is in my hands:

My family.

The world.

Senior prom . . .

Fearless Fourteen by Janet Evanovich

Description: Personal vendettas, hidden treasure, and a monkey named Carl will send bounty hunter Stephanie Plum on her most explosive adventure yet.

The Crime: Armed robbery to the tune of nine million dollars

Dom Rizzi robbed a bank, stashed the money, and did the time. His family couldn’t be more proud. He always was the smart one.

The Cousin: Joe Morelli

Joe Morelli, Dom Rizzi, and Dom’s sister, Loretta, are cousins. Morelli is a cop, Rizzi robs banks, and Loretta is a single mother waiting tables at the firehouse. The all-American family.

The Complications: Murder, kidnapping, destruction of personal property, and acid reflux

Less than a week after Dom’s release from prison, Joe Morelli has shadowy figures breaking into his house and dying in his basement. He’s getting threatening messages, Loretta is kidnapped, and Dom is missing.

The Catastrophe: Moonman

Morelli hires Walter “Mooner” Dunphy, stoner and “inventor” turned crime fighter, to protect his house. Morelli can’t afford a lot on a cop’s salary, and Mooner will work for potatoes.

The Cupcake: Stephanie Plum

Stephanie and Morelli have a long-standing relationship that involves sex, affection, and driving each other nuts. She’s a bond enforcement agent with more luck than talent, and she’s involved in this bank-robbery-gone-bad disaster from day one.

The Crisis: A favor for Ranger

Security expert Carlos Manoso, street name Ranger, has a job for Stephanie that will involve night work. Morelli has his own ideas regarding Stephanie’s evening activities.

The Conclusion: Only the fearless should read Fourteen.

Thrills, chills, and incontinence may result.

Driving Sideways by Jess Riley

Description: Leigh Fielding wants a life. Seriously. Having spent the past five years on dialysis, she has one simple wish: to make it to her thirtieth birthday. Now, thanks to the generosity of the late Larry Resnick and his transplanted kidney, it looks like her wish may come true.

With her newfound vitality (and Larry's kidney) in tow, Leigh hits the road for an excursion that will carry her from Wisconsin to California, with a few stops in between: Mount Rushmore, the Badlands, the Rockies, Las Vegas --- and a memorable visit to thank Larry's family for this second chance.

Yet Leigh's itinerary takes a sudden detour when she picks up seventeen year old hitchhiker Denise, a runaway with a bunch of stories and a couple of secrets. Add to the mix a long-lost mother, a loaded gun, an RV full of swingers, and Hall and Oates's Greatest Hits, and Driving Sideways becomes a hilarious and original journey of friendship, hope, and discovery.

Death By Pantyhose by Laura Levine

Description: Freelance writer Jaine Austen is back! This time around she's writing jokes for a female comic in order to make a buck. But when the comic's male rival is found dead, strangled by a pair of pantyhose, and Jaine's client is arrested, it's once again up to her to figure out whodunit.

Jaine Austen has never been able to resist the siren call of an Eskimo Pie, just like she can't resist renewing her romance with Andrew, an old crush. With her bank account hitting new lows, she's also just agreed to write jokes for Dorcas, a stand-up comic who throws her pantyhose into the audience as a punch line.

Not only is Dorcas's act a bomb, she is heckled by Vic, a gorgeous fellow comic who is equally good on stage and in the sack. Unfortunately Vic loves performing in both venues. He gets in bed with a sexy waitress, a pretty new lover, and a sweet girlfriend while professing his undying love for each. Worse, he is two-timing his aging agent. Pretty soon Vic has an enemy's list a mile long, and when he needles Dorcas one time too many, she assaults him at a club's open-mike night.

Naturally when Vic is murdered with Dorcas's pantyhose and that same Dorcas is standing over his dead body, the police arrest...Dorcas. They figure it's an open-and-shut case although Jaine figures no killer can be that dumb-even Dorcas. But when Jaine sets out to find the real culprit, she is distracted by one dating disaster after another with Andrew-and she may not see the dark side of comedy until she faces the business end of a gun and a cold, deadly grin...

Carpool Confidential by Jessica Benson

Description: Looks like we made it...

From the outside looking in, Cassie Martin's life is storybook perfect. She and her investment banker husband, Rick, have everything -- financial stability, a loving marriage, and a to-die-for apartment overlooking the Manhattan skyline that they share with their two young sons and one stinky but beloved dog. It may not be the height of excitement, but Cassie's content to take care of her family and compete in the superparenting sweepstakes of the New York City private school mom. Then one night, in one instant, everything changes. Rick has been offered an exciting new opportunity involving a...Barry Manilow retrospective? And he wants -- no, needs -- to try to get the feeling again.

I can't smile without you...or can I?

What can a woman do once she's been abandoned for brown polyester leisure suits and an a capella version of "Weekend in New England" other than hope her husband will eventually come to his senses? But as Cassie tries to keep her life afloat among the complications of financial insecurity, warring parents of her own, a mother-in-law who suddenly wants to become best girlfriends 4ever, and the advent of a third child in her life, it becomes clear that there's more to the Manilow story than meets the eye. And as fate would have it, Cassie's new work has her venturing into some of the city's hottest night spots -- definitely not the Copacabana -- and maybe, just maybe, into the arms of a man who will help her try to get the feeling again....

From Dead To Worse by Charlaine Harris

From Dead To Worse by Charlaine Harris

My Rating: 10 *'s

Description: After the natural disaster of Hurricane Katrina, and the manmade horror of the explosion at the vampire summit, Sookie Stackhouse is safe but dazed, yearning for things to get back to normal. But her boyfriend Quinn is among the missing. And things are changing, whether the weres and vamps in her corner of Louisiana like it or not. In the ensuing battles, Sookie faces danger, death…and once more, betrayal by someone she loves. And when the fur has finished flying and the cold blood ceases flowing, her world will be forever altered.

My Thoughts: Really enjoyed this story that seems to feature every character previously introduced in previous books. Once again, Sookie is drawn into the paranormal world dealing with a new Vampire regime taking over, and a Were war, while trying to deal with her feelings for Eric and Bill and worrying about her boyfriend, Quinn who has gone missing. Sookie is also hosting houseguests, Witch Amelia and her male companion, Bob, who was inadvertently turned into a cat. Sookie tries to keep her life low-key as best as she can, considering she's a telepath who is able to hear the thoughts of those around her, much to her dismay at times. Some new characters arrive and Sookie is going to have much more on her plate down the road. I can't wait to read the next book!


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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)