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Showing posts from October, 2011

Review: "Everyone Worth Knowing" by Lauren Weisberger

From Goodreads:  Soon after Bette Robinson quits her horrendous Manhattan banking job like the impulsive girl she's never been, the novelty of walking her four-pound dog around the unglamorous Murray Hill neighborhood wears as thin as the "What are you going to do with your life?" phone calls from her parents. Then Bette meets Kelly, head of Manhattan's hottest PR firm, and suddenly she has a brand-new job where the primary requirement is to see and be seen inside the VIP rooms of the city's most exclusive nightclubs. But when Bette begins appearing in a vicious new gossip column, she realizes that the line between her personal life and her professional life is...invisible. My Thoughts:  I received this book in a book exchange; it didn't seem like something I would like but I figured I should give it a chance.  It turned out be something I didn't like.  It moved slow, the characters were shallow and not super likable and it seemed about a hundred pages

In My Mailbox (24)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren . Happy (almost) Halloween everyone!  I hope your weekend is going well!  Here is what I received this week: From the Library: Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser In Cold Blood by Truman Capote Dirty Sexy Politics by Meghan McCain Maybe Baby by Lori Leibovich What's in your mailbox this week?

Review: "The Favored Queen" by Carolly Erickson

From Goodreads:  Born into an ambitious noble family, young Jane Seymour is sent to Court as a Maid of Honor to Catherine of Aragon, Henry VIII’s aging queen. She is devoted to her mistress and watches with empathy as the calculating Anne Boleyn contrives to supplant her as queen. Anne’s single-minded intriguing threatens all who stand in her way; she does not hesitate to arrange the murder of a woman who knows a secret so dark that, if revealed, would make it impossible for the king to marry Anne.  Once Anne becomes queen, no one at court is safe, and Jane herself becomes the victim of Anne’s venomous rage when she suspects Jane has become the object of the king’s lust. Henry, fearing that Anne’s inability to give him a son is a sign of divine wrath, asks Jane to become his next queen. Deeply reluctant to embark on such a dangerous course, Jane must choose between her heart and her loyalty to the king. My Thoughts:  This was very different than other Tudor era book I have read be

Happy Friday! (9)

Another Friday, yippee! Once again, the past week has kicked my butt so I am ready for the weekend!  It's also time for Friday memes! Follow Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Parajunkee's View and Alison Can Read . This week's question is:  If you could have dinner with your favorite book character, who would you eat with and what would you serve? Oh my goodness, this is so hard!  I would probably want to have dinner with Kira from We the Living.  We would probably eat something Russian like pelmeni or stroganoff. I also wouldn't mind having dinner with the Black Dagger Brotherhood. ; ) Who would you like to eat with? The Book Blog Hop is a weekly meme hosted by Jen at Crazy for Books .  It's a great way to meet new bloggers and check cool blogs! This week's question is :  What is your favorite Halloween costume ? I love homemade, creative costumes.  I recently read online about someone who dressed up as an "unhappy camper", I think

Review: "Angel of Vengeance" by Ana Siljak

From Goodreads:  In the Russian winter of 1878 a shy, aristocratic young woman named Vera Zasulich walked into the office of the governor of St. Petersburg, pulled a revolver from underneath her shawl, and shot General Fedor Trepov point blank.  “Revenge!,” she cried, for the governor's brutal treatment of a political prisoner. Her trial for murder later that year became Russia's "trial of the century," closely followed by people all across Europe and America. On the day of the trial, huge crowds packed the courtroom.  The cream of Russian society, attired in the finery of the day, arrived to witness the theatrical testimony and deliberations in the case of the young angel of vengeance.  After the trial, Vera became a celebrated martyr for all social classes in Russia and became the public face of a burgeoning revolutionary fervor. Dostoyevsky (who attended the trial), Turgenev, Engels, and even Oscar Wilde all wrote about her extraordinary case. Her astonishing acq

Review: "The Red Tent" by Anita Diamant

From Goodreads:  Her name is Dinah. In the Bible, her life is only hinted at in a brief and violent detour within the more familiar chapters of the Book of Genesis that are about her father, Jacob, and his dozen sons. Told in Dinah's voice, this novel reveals the traditions and turmoils of ancient womanhood--the world of the red tent. It begins with the story of her mothers--Leah, Rachel, Zilpah, and Bilhah--the four wives of Jacob. They love Dinah and give her gifts that sustain her through a hard-working youth, a calling to midwifery, and a new home in a foreign land. Dinah's story reaches out from a remarkable period of early history and creates an intimate connection with the past. Deeply affecting, The Red Tent combines rich storytelling with a valuable achievement in modern fiction: a new view of biblical women's society. My Thoughts:  I didn’t know what to expect when I picked up this book.   I had heard good things about and picked it up multiple times but

Top Ten Books to Read During Halloween

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish . This week's topic is:  Top Ten Books To Read During Halloween 1.)      The Shining by Stephen King-The ultimate Halloween book! 2.)     Dracula by Bram Stoker 3.)     The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins -Both of these books books are gothic literature at its best! 4.)     Pet Semetary by Stephen King Animals and people rising from the dead equal a great Halloween story. 5.)     The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova-Vlad the Impaler…enough said. 6.)     In the Woods by Tana French-This murder mystery was super dark and very creepy! 7.)     The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman-A book set in a graveyard is a great read at Halloween. 8.)     Mistress of the Art of Death by Ariana Franklin-Oh my goodness, the murderer in this story was a FREAK.   So scary! 9.)     The Witching Hour by Anne Rice-Witches and ghosts and demons, oh my! 10.) Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith-Another murder mystery w

Review: "Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children" by Ransom Riggs

From Goodreads:   A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of very curious photographs. It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children , an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive. A spine-tingling fantasy illustrated with haunting vintage photography, Miss Peregrine’s Hom e for Peculiar Children will delight adults, teens, and anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows. My Though

In My Mailbox (23)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren . I honestly didn't expect to get any books this week but several of my requests at the libary came in so I actually have something to share!  I have instated a book buying ban until after Christmas so from here on out you will probably see a lot of library books in my mailbox. From the Library: Lover Revealed by J.R. Ward Lover Enshrined by J.R. Ward (These are my new brain candy!) The Favored Queen by Carolly Erickson (This is the final book I plan to read as part of the Henry VIII challenge.  It's taken me forever to find a 5th book!) Free Download from Project Gutenberg: Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad (I am reading this book as part of the November Group read hosted by A Literary Odyssey ) Have a great week!

Review: "Lover Awakened" by J.R. Ward

From Goodreads:  J. R. Ward's third entry in the fabulous Black Dagger Brotherhood vampire series ( Dark Lover, Lover Eternal ) is "all adrenaline all the time," starting from page one. Again, we are back in Caldwell, New York, where a deadly street war continues between the Black Dagger Brotherhood, a band of six vampire warriors, and their enemies. One warrior, Zsadist, is perhaps the fiercest; with his scarred face and shaven skull, he looks like the Grim Reaper, if the Reaper were packing a small arsenal! Not even his twin, Phury, can understand Zsadist's obsession with finding the beautiful Bella, an aristocratic civilian abducted six weeks earlier by the evil Lessening Society. When Zsadist finds Bella -- and he does -- she has been traumatized by her abduction and feels safe only with him. Their subsequent passionate romance is undeniably one with issues. Zsadist's past as a blood slave, humiliated and sexually abused for centuries, has left deep scars.

Happy Friday! (8)

Happy Friday everyone!  This week has been INSANE at work so I am very excited that it's Friday! The Book Blogger Hop is a weekly meme hosted by Jen at Crazy for Books .  It's a great way to check out other blogs and meet some cool bloggers. This week's question is:  What's your favorite candy? I LOVE sweets so this is a tough question!  I would have to say that my favorite candies are Peanut Butter M&M's and red licorice (never black!).  I also enjoy Reese's and Snickers....see I told you I loved sweets! What are your favorite treats? Follow Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Parajunkee's View and Alison Can Read . This week's question is:  What superhero is your alter-ego? Oh my goodness this is a hard question.  I am not really into super heroes but I do love Batman.  He has an awesome car and a ton of really handy gadgets.  Also, the bat cave is pretty freaking amazing! Have a great weekend!

Review: "Thirteen Reasons Why" by Jay Asher

From Goodreads:  Clay Jensen returns home from school to find a mysterious box with his name on it lying on his porch. Inside he discovers thirteen cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker, his classmate and crush who committed suicide two weeks earlier. My Thoughts:  I am still not really sure how I feel about this book.   It was like nothing I have ever read and it just infuriated me.   I was so angry at Hannah for most of the book and the main reason I plowed through the book was because I wanted to see how things would turn out for Clay.   I felt kind of bad for Hannah, she did have to deal with some major bullying but there were also other things that happened that she had complete control over but still tried to blame on other people.   She put herself in some really bad situations and then rather than talking to a friend or her parents, she just gave up and tried to play the victim.   I have a really hard time with the fact that she blamed EVERYONE for her suicide and not on

Review: "Madame Tussaud" by Michelle Moran

From Goodreads:   In this deft historical novel, Madame Tussaud (1761-1850) escapes the pages of trivia quizzes to become a real person far more arresting than even her waxwork sculptures. Who among us knew, for instance, that she moved freely through the royal court of Louis XVI, only to become a prisoner of the Reign of Terror? Her head was shaven for guillotining, but she escaped execution, though she was forced to make death masks for prominent victims. Novelist Michelle Moran covers this breathtaking period without losing the thread of its subject's singular story. My Thoughts:   I have read so many rave reviews about this book that I was sure I would love it.   Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case.   It’s not that I hated, or even disliked, this book, I just didn’t think it was fantastic.   The story was slow and predictable and the end was kind of anticlimactic.   The end left me with tons of unanswered questions that I won’t list here because I don’t want to give an

Top Ten Books Whose Title/Cover Made Me Buy It

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish . This week's topic is:  Top Ten Books That Whose Titles Or Covers Made Me Buy It I only have 5 books on my list this week as I just could not think of any others that would fit. 1.)      Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children -The cover of this book is so creepy that I couldn’t resist buying it. 2.)     The Bronze Horseman -The only reason I picked up this book is because it has the same title as a famous Pushkin poem as well a statue in St. Petersburg. 3.)     The Witch of Cologne by Tobsha Learner- I have picked up this book multiple times and finally purchased it last week.   The cover is so odd looking that I am completely intrigued by it. 4.)     Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater-I don’t think I would have bought this if the cover wasn’t so beautiful. 5.)     The New York Regional Mormon Singles Halloween Dance by Elna Baker-I haven’t this yet but I bought it for my nook because the title

Review: "Dracula" by Bram Stoker

From Goodreads:  The aristocratic vampire that haunts the Transylvanian countryside has captivated readers' imaginations since it was first published in 1897. Hindle asserts that Dracula depicts an embattled man's struggle to recover his "deepest sense of himself as a man", making it the "ultimate terror myth". My Thoughts:  How have I put off reading this book for so long???   For some reason, I thought it would be boring and super lame.   WRONG.   This was a great book and it’s no wonder it is considered a classic.   The creepy factor reminded me a lot of The Woman in White and the story hooked me right away.   The characters were silly but lovable and I found myself completely engrossed in the story.   It was really hard for me to get the picture of Hugh Jackman as Van Helsing out of my head because the original Van Helsing is nothing like that.   Madame Mina seemed to be the smartest one of the bunch though she tried to play herself off as an un

In My Mailbox (22)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren . This was a crazy book week!  I went back to the library book sale on their $7 bag night and bought a ton of books (basically for $7 you get as many books as will fit in a bag).  I also got a few other books too. From the library: Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher Purchased: Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger Falls the Shadow by Sharon Kay Penman Empire Falls by Richard Russo Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok The Red Tent by Anita Diamant  March by Geraldine Brooks Mistress of Rome by Kate Quinn The German Woman by Paul Griner Zlata's Diary by Zlata Filopovic The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini The Witch of Cologne by Tobsha Learner Whew!  I better get reading!  What's in your mailbox this week?

Happy Friday!! (7)

Happy Friday everyone!  I have the day off today so I am super excited for a three day weekend!  The Book Blog Hop is a weekly meme hosted by Jen at Crazy for Books . This week's question is:  “What is your favorite spooky book (i.e. mystery/suspense, thriller, ghost story, etc.)?” My favorite spooky book is The Shining by Stephen King.  I read it in Junior High and it still scares me to think about it!  The book is way scarier than the movie and I remember reading it when I was home by myself and being completely freaked out.  What's your favorite spooky book? Follow Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Parajunkee's View and Alison Can Read . This week's question is:  If you could have characters from a particular book meet and form an epic storyline with characters from a particular TV series, which would you choose and why? I would have the characters from the Fever series by Karen Marie Moning join up with the cast of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  I th

Review: "The Winter Palace" by Eva Stachniak

From Goodreads:  Her name is Barbara—in Russian, Varvara. Nimble-witted and attentive, she’s allowed into the employ of the Empress Elizabeth, amid the glitter and cruelty of the world’s most eminent court. Under the tutelage of Count Bestuzhev, Chancellor and spymaster, Varvara will be educated in skills from lock picking to lovemaking, learning above all else to listen—and to wait for opportunity. That opportunity arrives in a slender young princess from Zerbst named Sophie, a playful teenager destined to become the indomitable Catherine the Great. Sophie’s destiny at court is to marry the Empress’s nephew, but she has other, loftier, more dangerous ambitions, and she proves to be more guileful than she first appears. What Sophie needs is an insider at court, a loyal pair of eyes and ears who knows the traps, the conspiracies, and the treacheries that surround her. Varvara will become Sophie’s confidante—and together the two young women will rise to the pinnacle of absolute power.

Hit My Reading Goal!

So as of last night, I have read 150 books this year which is crazy!  I decided to make things a little interesting and try to hit 200 books by the end of the year.  I have some reservations as to whether or not this will be possible but we'll see. Where are you all at with your reading goals?

Review: "Dark Lover" by J.R. Ward

From Goodreads:  In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there's a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing more than Wrath, the leader of The Black Dagger Brotherhood. The only purebred vampire left on earth, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But, when one of his most trusted fighters is killed-leaving his half-breed daughter unaware of his existence or her fate-Wrath must usher her into the world of the undead-a world of sensuality beyond her wildest dreams. My Thoughts:  I am not a huge paranormal fan, normally I shy away from these types of books so when I heard amazing reviews of this book, I was pretty skeptical.   I picked up copy at the library but never got a chance to read it so when I received another copy in a book exchange, I decided I should give it a

Top Ten Books I Wish I Could Read Again for the First Time

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish . Today's topic is:  Top Ten Books I Wish I Read Again for the First Time I am not going to put individual explanations for each of these books.   All of ten of these books completely blew me away when I first read them.   Each of them stuck with me for a long time after reading them and I consider all of them to be some of the best books I have ever read.   I find myself hoping that each book I read will affect me the same way that these books have; sometimes they do and sometimes I am disappointed. 1.)      Outlander by Diana Gabaldon 2.)     The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons 3.)     The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins 4.)     Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling 5.)     Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury 6.)     We the Living by Ayn Rand 7.)     The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley 8.)     Kolyma Tales by Varlaam Shalamov 9.)     A Time to Kill by John Grisham 10.) The Lion,

Review: "The Siege" by Helen Dunmore

From Goodreads:  Helen Dunmore's astoundingly beautiful new drama of two intertwined love stories unfolding during the 1941 siege on Leningrad has already been deemed "a pinnacle in [her] fiction, and in the year's fiction too" (The Telegraph) and "a world-class novel" (The Times). At once epic and intimate, The Siege is a modern masterpiece. Sudden news of a German attack rips the Levin family — twenty-two-year-old Anna; her young brother, Kolya; and their father, Mikhail — from their countryside retreat, throwing their world into unimagined turmoil. Soon all of Leningrad is trapped by the besieging German army, but daily life must go on. While Kolya plays with his toy fort, his tiny body grows cruelly thin. While Anna dreams of an artist's life, she forages for food in the ever more desperate city. Likewise, Dunmore's lush, lyrical appreciation of life's comforts — a fire in the hearth, jam on the tongue — dwells in The Siege even amid the d

In My Mailbox (21)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren . I had a great week this week!  My local library book sale started on Thursday so I went and picked up a few books.  I plan to go back tomorrow for their $7 bag night so next week's IMM should be good too. Here is what I got: Cleopatra's Daughter by Michelle Moran A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova Tully by Paullina Simons Mary Queen of Scotland and the Isles by Margaret George The Autobiography of Henry VIII: With Notes by his Fool, Will Somers by Margaret George Yesterday, I read Dark Lover and I loved it so much that I went out and bought the next two books in the series. Lover Eternal by J.R. Ward Lover Awakened by J.R. Ward What's in your mailbox this week?

Review: "The Emancipator's Wife" by Barbara Hambly

From Goodreads:  As a girl growing up in Kentucky, she lived a sheltered, privileged life filled with picnics and plantation balls. Vivacious, impulsive, and intoxicated by politics, she is a Todd of Lexington, an aristocratic family whose ancestors defeated the British. But no one knows her secret fears and anxieties. Although she is courted by the most eligible suitors in the land, including future senator Stephen Douglas, it is a gangly lawyer from Illinois who captures her heart. After a stormy courtship and a broken engagement, Abraham Lincoln will marry twenty-four-year-old Mary Todd and give her a ring inscribed with the words “Love Is Eternal.” But their happiness won’t last nearly so long. Their first child will be born under the gathering clouds of a civil war, and three more follow. As Lincoln’s star rises, the pleasure-loving Mary learns, often the hard way, the rules of being a politician’s wife. But by the time the fiery storm of war passes, tragedy will have claimed t

Happy Friday! (6)

Friday is finally here!!!!  This week has been super crazy and is all kind of blur.  I am so glad I get to actually relax this weekend. Follow Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Parajunkee's View and Alison Can Read . This week's question is:  If you could pick one character in a book, movie or television show to swap places with, who would it be? My Answer:  I would switch places with Claire Fraser from the Outlander series because I would love to be able to travel through time.  She gets to see some really amazing historical events and I think that would be awesome!! Who would you switch places with?? The Book Blog Hop is a weekly meme hosted by Jen at Crazy for Books . “It’s time to spread some love beyond the borders of the Book Blogger Hop! This week, we aren’t answering a question. We are spotlighting our fellow bloggers. Find your favorite(s) author interview(s), guest post(s), book review(s), or bookish article(s) that ANOTHER BOOK BLOGGER featured on t

Top Ten Books That Left Me with My Mouth Hanging Open

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish . This week's topic is:  The Top Ten Books that Left Me with My Mouth Hanging Open 1.)     An Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon-When I got to the end of this book I seriously thought my book was short pages.   2.)     My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult-If you read my review of this book, then you know I HATED the end of this book.   I was sobbing and yelling WTF??!! at the same time. 3.)     Forever by Maggie Stiefvater-When this ended, I couldn’t believe it.   There were so many of my questions left unanswered!! 4.)     Demonglass by Rachel Hawkins-This had a crazy cliffhanger ending! 5.)     Dreamfever by Karen Marie Moning-The end of this book left me yelling NONONONO!   6.)     Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane-I never saw this coming. 7.)     We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver-I had an idea of what was going to happen at the end of this book but it was even worse than I expect

Review: "Quiver" by Holly Luhning

From Goodreads:  In sixteenth-century Hungary, Countess Elizabeth Báthory tortured and killed over six hundred servant girls in order to bathe in their blood; she believed this brutal ritual would preserve her youth and beauty Danica, a young forensic psychologist, is drawn to Báthory’s legend. She has moved from Canada to England to work at Stowmoor, a Victorian insane asylum turned modern-day forensic hospital. One of her patients, the notorious Martin Foster, murdered a fourteen-year-old girl in homage to Báthory. He cultivates his criminal celebrity and Danica struggles to maintain a professional demeanor with the charismatic Foster as she begins to suspect that his activities may be linked to a cabal that idolizes Báthory. Danica’s life in London becomes increasingly complicated when Maria, a glamorous friend from Danica’s past, arrives to do archival work in the city. She claims to have discovered Báthory’s long-lost diaries and slowly reveals horrific passages to Danica. As Da