January 31, 2009

Review: Whisper of Warning by Laura Griffin

RELEASE DATE MARCH 31, 2009 - Pre order your copy today.


Courtesy of Laura Griffin


Courtney Glass only agreed to meet her married ex-fling David at the park to get him to stop his constant text messaging and hash things out once and for all. When he finally shows up she’s pissed. It’s hot and humid and he made her wait when he’s the one who wanted to meet. When he finally gets into her car he’s acting all annoyed and accusing her of harassment. With no time to ponder this confusing accusation a masked gunman gets into the back of the car. After taking their cell phones he forces Courtney’s hand into his and shoots David. Courtney manages mace the gunman right in the mouth and flees the car, literally running for her life.

Newly promoted Detective Will Hodges lands the case along with his partner Nathan Devereaux. When Nathan has to step down from the case because of his ties to the Glass family it’s up to Will to solve David’s murder and he can see right through Courtney’s lies. Her story about the shooting just doesn’t add up but he still believes she’s innocent. With heat from David’s rich widow, his lieutenant pressures him to arrest Courtney and close the case.

As the walls beginning closing in on Courtney she realizes that she has an important piece of information that the real killer wants and she has no choice but to turn to the brooding detective for help. Will knows that getting involved with his prime suspect will end his career but he just can’t help being drawn in. Will he find the real killer in time or will the killer catch up to Courtney?

From the opening chapter I was hooked (read it here!) . Having read book one in the series, Thread of Fear, I already knew that Courtney attracts trouble but this situation takes the cake. I loved the fact that the action starts immediately and the rest of the book keeps up the pace.

Another great thing is that I never figured out who the killer was. It’s so refreshing when you can’t see it coming from a mile away. I also liked that the relationship between Courtney and Will happens naturally. I hate when characters jump into bed within hours of meeting each other. This was another great read by Laura Griffin. I do recommend reading Thread of Fear first just because I loved it so much but Whisper of Warning is definitely a stand alone read if you just want to jump into the action.

Review: Speed Demon by Erin Lynn


When we last read about sixteen-year-old Kenzie Sutcliffe she had just closed a demon portal in her shower drain by running the family minivan in the pipes. Unfortunately it created a minivan sized hole in her kitchen wall. Now she’s not only grounded but won’t be getting her drivers license until she’s eighteen.

On day one of the kitchen reconstruction she’s so creeped out by the large guy working on the wall she tries to take her breakfast cereal elsewhere in the house but her mom won’t let her. She sneaks off with her cereal and a Diet Coke to sit in the minivan. When she accidentally sprays her drink on the radio another demon portal pops open. That’s when Levi, the “good demon” who’s been staying with her family, points out that there are actually 5 demon portals and Kenzie has to figure out how to close them all permanently, with no help from him.

I definitely recommend reading the first book, Demon Envy, before picking up Speed Demon. A majority of the story references book one and it has the background on why Levi is with the family. I enjoyed Speed Demon much more than I did Demon Envy. Kenzie’s character is a little more realistic in this one and the storyline was cute.

I like the way Kenzie’s character deals with Levi and the new demon from the portal not to mention her regular teenage drama which includes boyfriend and best friend trouble. The book is also a set up for the next book which I will definitely be reading. I recommend this for teens and anyone else who loves YA books. 

January 28, 2009

I'm Tink Approved!!

Jen from Up Close & Personal with Lady Tink is "spreading that fairy dust again!" and decided that my blog is Tink Approved. Thank you Jen!!

Jen's other blog The Movieholic & Bibliophile Blog is another one of my favorites.

January 27, 2009

Giveaway: Beat the Reaper by Josh Bazell

WINNERS: Julie in Australia, Mark in Vermont and Lori in Indiana

Courtesy of Hachette Audio

Read My Review - I LOVED IT!

Special thanks to Anna at Hachette for sponsoring this giveaway!! Three winners will be selected. Since Hachette has already sent me a copy for review I have one to mail internationally... Whoo hoo!!


  • For your chance to win, please enter your name, email and country in the form below.

  • For extra entries, read and post a comment on any of my book reviews. Earn one entry for each comment you leave. (Please use the Blogger comment link at the bottom of the reviews, not the comment section of the entry form).

  • For 3 entries, Tweet about the giveaway using the message below and enter your Twitter name in the entry form.


  • Win Beat The Reaper on audio cd at
    Reading With Monie http://tinyurl.com/cns57p






    I will take entries until 9:00pm CST Thursday, February 5th and the winners will be announced Friday, February 6th. Open worldwide.

    Winner must respond to notification email within 48 hours or a new winner will be selected. Good Luck!!

    Thank you to Sweeties Sweeps for listing my blog giveaway.

    Review: Little Pink House by Jeff Benedict


    Courtesy of Hachette Audio

    Susette Kelo Tells Her Story at the Cato Institute and a podcast interview

    (Thanks to Chris for sending these links) 

    When Susette Kelo’s five boys grew up and moved out of the rural house she shared with her husband it became apparent that their marriage was no longer working. Susette made the decision to leave him and move out on her own. Having also made the decision to use no money from their joint account all Susette was able to afford was a small fixer upper on the waterfront in New London, Connecticut.

    Around the same time Susette purchased her new home and began to fix it up. The New London Development Corporation was formulating a plan to re-develop the waterfront which included the Ft. Trumbull area where Susette’s house was located by selling the land to the pharmaceutical company Pfizer.

    When Susette and more than a few of her neighbors refused to sell, the city and the NLDC tried to take their homes using eminent domain, the law which allows the state to seize a citizen's private property for public use. What resulted was court case that made it all the way to the Supreme Court and a fight that lasted over 9 years. 

    Burb: “In Little Pink House, award-winning investigative journalist Jeff Benedict takes us behind the scenes of this case -- indeed, Susette Kelo speaks for the first time about all the details of this inspirational true story as one woman led the charge to take on corporate America to save her home.

    The amazing spirit of Susette Kelo and the other families that refused to leave is so moving. They refused to back down when it seemed impossible that they would ever win. I admire they way Susette showed no sign of weakness in front of the big corporation and the rest of her opposition.

    The news stories about the case became national news and the Supreme Court ruling became one of the most unpopular rulings of all time. Since this case states either have or are considering amendments to the eminent domain law which prohibit the state turning over land seized under the guise of public use over to private corporations.

    My review is based on the abridged audio version which was read by Maggi-Meg Reed. I think that listening to this as opposed to reading gave me a better mental picture of Susette as fighter and a strong woman to admire. I highly recommend this book to readers of all genres as it is an inspirational story.

    January 26, 2009

    Review: Houdini by T. J. Banks


    Courtesy of Publishing Works


    One day while walking near a college campus apartment David heard an unbelievably loud meow coming from a tiny kitty that fit in the palm of his hand. He was abandoned in one of the apartments when the semester was over. David convinces his friend Jim Leonard and his daughter Jill to adopt him and the kitty with no name was smuggled onto a plane for the ride home.

    Once home Jill still couldn’t figure out what to name the kitty until the next morning when he mysteriously escaped out of the box he was in and Houdini was officially named. Houdini spent his days on the Leonard farm, chasing squirrels, basking in the warmth of the dryer vent and playing with the numerous cats and toms on the farm.

    One day while seeking shelter from the wind Houdini sneaks into a hole on the under carriage of Mr. Leonard’s car and when he wakes up and gets out of the car to look around he gets left in the drug store parking lot. Houdini goes through a rough few days and eventually finds shelter but will he find his way home to Jill?

    I’m not embarrassed to say that Houdini made me cry. The story is told mostly from his point of view and it was super cute but a little sad in some parts. Overall the book is a good story for kids and there is a great message at the end about disabilities. I recommend Houdini for readers aged 9-12 and cat lovers of all ages.


    January 24, 2009

    Review: Lifelines by CJ Lyons


    Courtesy of CJ Lyons

    In Lifelines we meet four strong ladies who work at Angels of Mercy Medical Center in Pittsburgh. Lydia Fiore, the ER attending physician whose first day on the job may be here last when she fails to save the life of the Chief of Surgery's son who was struck by a car. Nora Halloran, the charge nurse whose relationship with her boyfriend is falling apart but Nora seems oblivious to that fact. Amanda Mason, the med student with aspirations of being a pediatrician who refuses to accept the fact that she's showing symptoms of a major illness. And perfectionist Gina Freeman, the resident who comes from a wealthy family but works to give something back.

    Initially turned off by Dr. Fiore's tough exterior Nora, Amanda and Gina befriend Lydia when they realize what an excellent doctor she is. When Gina and Lydia are attacked outside of a restaurant Lydia realizes the death of the Chief of Surgery's son was no accident and Gina calls in her boyfriend, Detective Boyle, to begin investigating the murder and clear Lydia's name.

    The plot is definitely planned as the first of the series. Lifelines is really the story of Dr. Fiore. The storylines of the three other women are set up but not wrapped up so you're left with major cliffhangers in regards to their stories.

    I really enjoyed this one as it was fast-paced and action packed throughout the whole book. Having read this right after two books which both have medical aspects to them (the slower paced Irreplaceable and the outrageous, but still awesome, Beat the Reaper) this one was more up my alley as it was a suspense story just a little romance thrown in. To quote other reviewers, reading this is like watching your favorite episode of ER or Grey's Anatomy. I will definitely be reading book two, Warning Signs and I recommend this one for all medical thriller/romantic suspense lovers.

    January 23, 2009

    2009 Young Adult Book Challenge


    I'm telling you... J. Kaye's Book Blog has a lot of challenges. LOL

    The goal of this one is to read 12 Young Adult books in 2009 and since I'm already reading 9 as part of my 999 Challenge all I have to do is read 3 more. Pretty sneaky, huh??

    1. Witch High Anthology
    2. Fade - Lisa McMann
    3. Dork Diaries: Tales From A Not-So-Fabulous Life - Rachel Renee Russell
    4. Elijah's Coin - Steve O'Brien
    5. Oh My Goth - Gena Showalter
    6. Speed Demon - Erin Lynn
    7. You Are So Undead to Me - Stacey Jay
    8. Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson
    9. Jennifer Scales and The Ancient Furnace - MaryJanice Davidson & Anthony Alongi
    10. Jennifer Scales and The Messenger of Light - MaryJanice Davidson & Anthony Alongi
    11. Dramarama - E. Lockhart
    12. The Dangerous Days of Daniel X - James Patterson

    100+ Reading Challenge

    J. Kaye's Book Blog is hosting quite a few challenges and since they can overlap books I'm joining another one. This challenge is to read 100 or more books in 2009. Since I read 140 in  2008 I'm positive I can meet this challenge.


    I'll be tracking my books in the usual place on my sidebar.



    I'm it!!


    Mary over at books gardens and dogs and Jen at Jenn's Bookshelf have both tagged me.

    Here are the rules:

    Link to the person who has tagged you. Write down six things that make you happy. Post the rules, tag six others and let them know you did it.Then tell the person when your entry is complete.








    Six Things That Make Me Happy:

    1. My son.

    2. My husband.

    3. My cats.

    4. Reading books.

    5. Playing the slots & scratching lottery tickets.

    6. Hanging out with my firends.


    I have tagged the following blogs to play along...

    **ANYONE WHO WOULD LIKE TO PLAY!!** 

    Just grab the tag and go for it.
     
     

    January 22, 2009

    Review: Mayhem at Mount Moosilauke by Michael Sullivan


    Courtesy of Publishing Works

    Author's Website


    Fifth grader, Escapade Johnson, is in for an adventure. His class will be going on a five hour hike up Mount Moosilauke. From the moment the class steps onto the bus to the top of the mountain Escapade and his pals Jimmy, Benny and Davy face one mishap after another some of which include “bear poop, a poisonous belt, teddy bear underwear and a peanut butter sandwich that saves the day”.

    I loved this Escapade Johnson adventure just as much as I loved The Coffee Shop of the Living Dead. It's a cute story that would appeal to both girls and boys that read on a 4th-7th grade level. This was actually book one in the Escapade Johnson series but it there isn’t any disconnect from reading them out of order. Look for my review of The Witches of Belknap County in the next couple of days.

    2009 Audiobook Challenge


    In the last few months I've become obsessed with listening to audio books to and from work so I decided to join the Audio Challenge at J. Kaye's Book Blog. The goal is to listen to 12 audio books in 2009.


    1. Divine Justice - David Baldacci

    2. American Outrage - Tim Green

    3. Beat The Reaper - Josh Bazell

    4. Little Pink House by Jeff Benedict

    5. The Terror - Dan Simmons

    6. What The Dead Know - Laura Lippman

    7. Deadly Housewives - Anthology

    8. Dark Fever - Karen Marie Moning

    9. The Virgin's Lover - Philippa Gregory

    10. The Codex - Douglas Preston

    11. Bloodfever - Karen Marie Moning

    12. Steve Martin: The Magic Years - Morris Walker

    I'm positive I can do it!!


    Review: Beat the Reaper by Josh Bazell



    Courtesy of Hachette Audio

    As part of the Witness Protection Program, Pietro “Bear Claw” Brnwa, is relocated from New Jersey as a mob hit man to become Dr. Peter Brown who works Manhattan Catholic, one of the city’s worst hospitals.

    One morning during rounds he bumps into a patient with stomach cancer by the name of Nicholas LoBrutto. Turns out Nicholas also goes by the name of Eddy Squillante and if Peter would have know this he would have ran out the back door instead of into the hospital room. But he didn’t and Eddy gives him ultimatum… keep him alive or the mob will find out exactly what happened to Pietro Brnwa.

    Told in alternating flashbacks from the present to his gruesome past Beat the Reaper is a laugh a minute thrill ride. I listened to this book on audio CDs so I got the added benefit of hearing the sarcasm and wit instead of just imagining it. Both in the past and in the present Peter goes through some amazing adventures and lives a wild life. The horrors of the hospital were so awful you can only pray that places this hopeless don’t exist in real life.

    I read an article saying that Beat the Reaper is already optioned for a movie with Leonardo DiCaprio to star as Peter. I would definitely be first in line to see it and I highly recommend reading/listening to the book so when your friends start talking about it, you’ll be in the know.

    Review: Irreplaceable by Stephen Lovely




    Racing her bicycle back home to beat a storm, Isabel Voormann accidentally veers too far into the middle of the lane and is struck by a truck driven by Jasper Klass. Isabel’s husband Alex is now faced with an enormous decision. Isabel is an organ donor but the doctors still need his consent for the procedures. Reluctantly Alex agrees and Isabel’s heart is given to Janet Corcoran, a married mother of two who teaches art in an inner-city Chicago school.

    During her recovery from the transplant Janet tried contacting Alex but her advances were always rebuffed. One year later Alex is slowly trying to get his life back in order but his mother-in-law, Bernice, keeps pushing the issue of Alex meeting or at least talking to Janet.

    Janet feels that talking to Alex would give her an opportunity to thank him and in the process absolve some of her own guilt over Isabel’s death which is something her husband David doesn’t understand. Over time David becomes more distant with Janet and the family and a recent rejection episode with the heart forces him further away.

    Meanwhile Jasper can’t get over the fact that by ending one life he’s saved another. Eventually his warped mind leads him to follow Alex to the point of stalking him in order to learn the identity of the heart recipient and things quickly tumble out of control in his life and in his decision making.

    Irreplaceable was a book filled with a lot of emotion but it didn’t call out to me. I thought it was a good read but none of the characters made their way into my heart as books of this type usually do. I just didn’t feel a connection nor was there anything in the book that left me thinking about the characters once I closed it.

    I wouldn’t go so far as to say I didn’t like the book because I did enjoy it and I do recommend it for anyone who loves books similar to Jodi Picoult’s. The book was well researched and I’m sure that it will touch people’s lives in a deeper way than mine if they have personal experience with being a transplant recipient or the loved one of a recipient.

    January 19, 2009

    Review: Modern Magic by Anne Cordwainer


    Courtesy of Clotho Press


    Siblings John and Liz Prospero are two very different people. John takes after most of his ancestors as a very powerful sorcerer and Liz was born without an ounce of magic in her. She's what the magical community calls mundane. Surprisingly this combination works well for the pair as John is constantly called upon to fight renegade sorcerers who are out to murder both mundanes and other sorcerers while Liz pitches in with her mundane perspective on all things magical.

    With a rise in renegade sorcerers the magical community has to band together and figure out a way to move into the modern world when banishing renegades to their family heads is increasingly becoming another problem rather than the solution.

    Modern Magic is a story cycle which is several short stories spanning 11 years with the Prospero family. This was my first book written this way and I absolutely loved it. It made for quick reading and pretty much every chapter is jammed packed with the action because there's not a lot of extra story line needed to fill pages. I love that you get to know both main characters and quite a few secondary characters in detail even with these quick stories arcs. You even get to see most of them grow into adulthood and their respective responsibilities.

    Each of the twelve stories all tie together neatly at the end with plenty of surprises throughout. The ending was a complete shocker that I never figured out. It had me so amazed that I almost felt like going back and re-reading just so I could see if there were any clues I missed. This book was a lot of fun and I can't wait to read more from Cordwainer. I recommend it to anyone who loves Urban Fantasy or a great surprise ending.