Saturday, August 30, 2008

Tan Lines by J.J. Salem

Tan Lines
Tan Lines by J.J. Salem

I really liked this one! I wanted to read something light and fun after two very serious books, and this was the perfect choice.

It's the story of three friends who are sharing a summer rental in the Hamptons. Billie is the wild and troubled rock star, Liza is the married professional feminist, and Kelleyanne is the sweet Southern girl who's being taken care of by her sugar daddy. Over the course of the summer, they all go through lots of changes - some for the better and some for the worse.

It's fun and raunchy and absolutely readable!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

The Art of Racing in the Rain
The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein

I might never have picked this book up, but my sister-in-law recommended it, and I'm so glad she did. This is such a warm, wonderful book! Told from the dog's (Enzo) point of view, it's the story of him, his master Denny, and Denny's family.

It's written simply, but with so much depth and powerful emotion. Enzo lives his life as a dog trying to learn how to be a good human, since he believes that after his death, he will come back as a person.

I laughed in parts, cried in others. I give this one all 5 points - I can't think of anything I didn't love about this book!

Friday, August 22, 2008

The Grift by Debra Ginsberg

What I\
The Grift: A Novel by Debra Ginsberg

This was an absolutely amazing book! So well-written and engrossing - I would say that I could NOT put it down, but in fact, it was just the opposite in some places - the tension would be so extreme, that I would have to walk away from the book just to relax a bit!

I love books about psychics anyway, but this was by far one of the best ones I've ever read. Marina, the main character, starts off as a grifter, having been raised to be a "psychic" by her mother, she has become very skilled at reading people - but of course has no psychic abilities whatsoever. Then... things change, and she starts to become bombarded with visions, images, etc.

There's a mystery, some romance, lots of intrigue, and great characters. I so highly recommend this book! Now I'm off to try and get my hands on her other books :)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Such a Pretty Fat: One Narcissist's Quest To Discover if Her Life Makes Her Ass LookBig, Or Why Pie is Not The Answer by Jen Lancaster

What I\
Such a Pretty Fat: One Narcissist's Quest To Discover if Her Life Makes Her Ass LookBig, Or Why Pie is Not The Answer by Jen Lancaster

I almost didn't read this one, but I'm so glad I did! I really enjoyed it. I think this 3rd book by Jen Lancaster is by far her best. The first two were funny, but I didn't get a sense of any cohesion. This one, though, deals primarily with her weight, her realization that she needs to lose some!, and the processes she goes through. I completely related to so much of what she wrote, which could be why I love this one the best.

My absolute favorite part (and this doesn't give anything away) is when she decides to chart her progress with pictures. So she puts on cute clothes, fixes her hair and makeup, and decides she looks GREAT!! Then later looks at the picture and is horrified that she ended up with a picture of Jabba the Hut.

She talks about different weight loss methods - Atkins, Jenny Craig, and Weight Watchers - and exercise routines in her quest to find what works for her.

I think anyone who has struggled with losing weight can identify with this, laugh out loud reading it, and if not motivated to lose weight themselves, then at least cheer Jen on!

4 1/2 stars!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

So Long at the Fair: A Novel by Christina Schwarz

So Long at the Fair: A Novel
So Long at the Fair: A Novel by Christina Schwarz

As I was reading this book, I loved the plot, the writing, the setting - everything about this book was going great! And then it ended, and I felt completely unsatisfied. I wanted more of a resolution.

The novel takes place in the present time during one day in the life of Ginny and Jon. Jon is having an affair with a woman from his office, and much of the book deals with his feelings about both women. We're also taken back to 1963, and discover how Ginny and Jon's parents lives intertwined at that time, as well as a man for whom Ginny is currently doing some work. And in between all that, the novel fills us in on Ginny and Jon's background - how they met, their early marriage, etc.

But while the writing is very good, and I immensely enjoyed reading this book, there is just too much that is unresolved in this novel. As it is, it can be considered a great character study. You may not like all the characters (and there is much to NOT like!) but you get to know them pretty well. However, if you're looking for a great story with everything wrapped up at the end, this isn't going to be it.

Overall, I'd give this 3 1/2 stars.

Some Like It Hot-Buttered (A Double Feature Mystery) by Jeffrey Cohen

Some Like It Hot-Buttered (A Double Feature Mystery)
Some Like It Hot-Buttered (A Double Feature Mystery) by Jeffrey Cohen

I loved this cozy! The characters are great - Elliot Freed (the main character) is a funny, endearing character. The murder (a man found dead in Elliot's theater), plus the added mystery of the discover of pirated copies of a movie, keep the reader guessing all the way to the end.

There's a lot packed into this book - I love Jeffrey Cohen's writing style. It's fresh and funny - you take your time, because you don't want to miss a word. I look forward to the next one in this series!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

If you like Hailey Lind

I am a HUGE fan of the Art Lovers mystery series by Hailey Lind (actually two sisters collaborating!!). I was so sad to hear that the series was ending and dearly hope that someone somewhere picks up the next book(s) in this series!

Until then, there is apparently a new series starting - this is from their blog - :

Secondhand Spirits will be coming out July 2009, under the pseudonym Juliet Blackwell.

I'll definitely be on the lookout for that one - and keeping my fingers crossed for more in the Art Lovers series :)

Friday, August 15, 2008

Coming Soon.....

One of my favorite series is the Sophie Katz books by Kyra Davis. The books are:

SEX, MURDER AND A DOUBLE LATTE,
PASSION, BETRAYAL AND KILLER HIGHLIGHTS,
OBSESSION, DECEIT AND REALLY DARK CHOCOLATE

and YAY!! Coming soon in June of '09, Lust, Loathing And A Little Lip Gloss!

I'm so excited :)

Mum's the Word (Flower Shop Mysteries, No. 1) by Kate Collins

Mum's the Word (Flower Shop Mysteries, No. 1)
Mum's the Word (Flower Shop Mysteries, No. 1) by Kate Collins

I finally found time to start this series, and I'm so glad I did! I loved the characters, and the descriptions of working in a flower shop are actually pretty accurate (since my mom owns one!).

One thing that bothered me was how oblivious Abby could be about some things - things that were just really obvious. For example, she didn't connect all the threatening calls with her meddling - that just didn't make any sense at all.

But, despite that, the mystery was good and the plot moved along well. I'll definitely read the next one.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Twilight or Breaking Dawn Giveaway

A great giveaway is happening here! Katrina from Stone Soup giving away a copy of Breaking Dawn by Stephanie Meyer OR you can ask to receive Twilight instead, if you haven't started reading this series! Plus, if you aren't even interested in the series, you could still enter for a copy of The Host. This is an amazing giveaway!!! Enter by August 10th. Winner will be posted August 11th!!

Book Giveaway - The Gargoyle

A blog that I really like -Dawn's She Is Too Fond of Books - is having a giveaway of The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson here

Check it out!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

What I\
The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry

This was an amazing book! The idea of Lace Reading (seeing the future by looking through a piece of lace) is fascinating!! According to the author, she got the idea from a dream :)

I love so much about this book - the characters, the story, and the setting - Salem, Mass. Through this book, you feel as if you are there - that you could just travel there and immediately find your way around.

This was a can't-put-down read, and one of the few books out there that makes you feel a little richer for having read it.

I also recommend checking out the website!

A very cool site!

I came across this artist and I just love him! At some point, I'm going to try and learn to do my own blog design, and I hope to use his Book of Trees somewhere in it. Right now, it's my desktop wallpaper :)



Check it out!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Book giveaway

There's a giveaway for the book

The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson

This looks like such a good book! Something different, for sure :)

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Red Handed by Gena Showalter

Red Handed (Teen Alien Huntress)
Red Handed (Teen Alien Huntress) by Gena Showalter

A really good YA book about a young girl who is recruited by an agency that battles aliens. It's a good story - the girl, Phoenix, lives up to her name... In the beginning of the book, she is a drug user and has hit her rock bottom. In the rest of the book, she is rising from the ashes to become someone outstanding.

I'll definitely be reading the next book in this series - Blacklisted by Gena Showalter.

4 1/2 out of 5 stars

Hard Eight by Janet Evanovich

Another laugh-out-loud addition to this series! In this one, Stephanie is looking for a mother and daughter who have run away - and as usual, she gets in way over her head! Love this series!! I'm just dreading the day when I am caught up and I don't have a nice little stack of them waiting to be read :)