Monday, September 12, 2011

review: The Unwanteds by Lisa McMann

Book:  The Unwanteds by Lisa McMann
Release Date: 08/30/11


Every year in Quill, thirteen-year-olds are sorted into categories: the strong, intelligent Wanteds go to university, and the artistic Unwanteds are sent to their deaths.
Thirteen-year-old Alex tries his hardest to be stoic when his fate is announced as Unwanted, even while leaving behind his twin, Aaron, a Wanted. Upon arrival at the destination where he expected to be eliminated, however, Alex discovers a stunning secret—behind the mirage of the "death farm" there is instead a place called Artime.
In Artime, each child is taught to cultivate their creative abilities and learn how to use them magically, weaving spells through paintbrushes and musical instruments. Everything Alex has ever known changes before his eyes, and it's a wondrous transformation.
But it's a rare, unique occurence for twins to be separated between Wanted and Unwanted, and as Alex and Aaron's bond stretches across their separation, a threat arises for the survival of Artime that will pit brother against brother in an ultimate, magical battle.

Hmm... Usually when i finish a book in one day it ends up in my absolute favorites section, but this one didn't quite make it. Perhaps it's the fact that i'm a twenty five year old reading a book made for those half my age. Perhaps i set my hopes too high. I don't know. That is not to say the book is bad per say. It's a pretty solid four. Just not good enough to be a five and absolute favorite.

The book is basically the story of Alex stowe who on his thirteenth birthday was deemed "unwanted". See in the world of Quill a person is either Wanted, Necessary, or Unwanted. Those who are deemed "unwanted" are sent to their death. Basically to possess a creative mind is to be unwanted. It would seem that Alex's fate was set except it wasn't really. Marcus Today aka The Death Farmer aka the great mage of Artime saves every being deemed unwanted by transporting him to his made up world of Artime. There all kinds of magically creatures live and the residents learn "Art" based magic. The thing is that Quill doesn't know about Artime and it must stay that way. Otherwise Quill's army would attack. And it does. Take in some evil twins, sometimes eye rolling names, and a kiddier friendly version of Harry Potter and you get this book.

In a way i think in some area the author was trying to hard. The cover reads "The Hunger Games met Harry Potter" and it really isn't. It may have some similar features, but it isn't comparable. It's miss-leading and perhaps raised my expectations way! too high. Some of the names are just plain dumb "Claire Morning" and i find myself rolling my eyes a bit. I think take ten years off my age and i would find this book fabulous. It's completely kids friendly and has no "black magic" per say. That is not to say it's Winnie the Pooh magic. More of Classic Disney magic. People die, things happen, but completely kid friendly.

Final rating. 4 Bunnies. I was a bit bored with it at some times, but i'll come back for the next book. 

Monday, September 5, 2011

Review: "England's Perfect Hero" by Suzanne Enoch

Book: England's Perfect Hero
Author: Suzanne Enoch
Release Date: 02/24/04


Lucinda Barrett's best friends ended up married to the men to whom they delivered their 'lessons in love'. So Lucinda decides to choose someone who definitely needs lessons, but someone who will not complicate her life. And that person is definitely not Robert Carroway.
Robert is nothing if not complicated, and though he is the brother of a viscount, he rarely goes about society, and finds the weather and hat fashions ludicrous subjects for discussion. Robert is attracted to Lucinda's unpretentious ways, her serenity and her kindness. When she chooses someone for her love lessons, Robert offers to help her deliver her lessons, but sets out to convince the woman he has fallen for to take a chance on love ... and on him.

Funny, i've read this book tons of times, but have never written a review on it. First thing first i fell in love with Bit Carroway in "The Rake". I remember being ecstatic on finding out that he had his own book. I can safely say by the fact that i keep coming back and re-reading it that its one of my absolute favorite books of all time. Being that fact it is a bit hard for me to write a review on it.

The book reads the best when you read the whole "Lessons in Love" series in order. In a way the whole series has been a character development for Bit and Lucinda. You can see each of them growing in each book. This can be said of all the characters in trilogy, but especially true of these two.

Lucinda is the last of the trio to enact her lessons. She has no particular scoundrel in mind so she decides to find a man that she'll like to marry. After all, Evie and Georgie ended up marring their students. She chooses Mr. Geoffrey Newcombe. Handsome, the 4th son of a duke, and a war hero to boot. Simply perfect and safe. If not cheating a bit in terms of her lessons. Things would have gone smoothly if she hadn't stumbled upon Georgie's brother in law who had to ask about the lessons. Who "also" had to have those haunting blue eyes.

Bit has been quite the recluse the last three years. Think tortured and hurt hero and here's you man. (He's also mine if he ever decides to make himself solid and comes out of the book). He suffers from what is now known as Post dramatic stress syndrome and finds himself in a black panic whenever he gets out of his comfort zone. Yet he finds himself drawn to Lucinda. She's his ray of sunshine in his black world. Something that he can even admit to himself sounds stupid, but is true. Overhearing Lucinda talking with Evie and Georgie he can't help but be intrigued. When Lucinda brings him some roses to start a garden he offers to help Lucinda catch her suitor as a trade off. Anything to spend time with her.

The relationship between Bit and Lucinda is very heart warming. You can just tell from almost the get go that they're perfect for each other. They start off as amiable friends and work their way into love before either of them realize it. A perfect example of how love and bloom from friendship and not love/lust at first sight.

This is a brilliant book and one I HIGHLY recommend.

Final rating: 5 golden bunnies. Perfect in every way

Sunday, August 28, 2011

RIP Rachel Isis May 2006-Aug 25,2011

There has been a loss in the "Animal Reviewers" family. Rachel is gone. She's been sick for a long time. If you're part of bunnyowners or rabbitowners on live journal you would know with what. She had blood work done tuesday and got the results thursday morning. They were not good. She wasn't herself when i got her out of the cage so i had my mother rush her to the vets. I was supposed to be taking her to see a specialist friday. I had a horrible feeling all day. And almost started crying multiple times. I got a call at work from Dr. Brady saying Rachel was in really bad shape. She couldn't use her front feet and she already had a screaming fit. They had given her oxygen. I could either rush her to Gaithersburg to the specialist or i could put her down. I knew she was really really bad so i opted to come in and do the later.She said i could come in when my shift finished, but i couldn't. I couldn't work the last two hours knowing what i had to do. The whole conversation occurred with me sitting on the floor behind the counter at the pharmacy crying. Tarra told me just to go. Don't worry about anything. I got there as fast as i could, but i was too late. Dr. Brady told me Rachel had passed away. They left for a few minutes and she was gone. I didn't get a chance to say goodbye and i loved her. If i knew i would never get to see her alive again i would have loved her all morning. I would have kissed and hugged her lots before i put her in a crate. I would have let her feel i loved her more than just telling her before she left..

My baby girl. My princess is gone. She was the bunny i've had the longest (minus Leah). She was never the same after Brighton passed away though. I can't imagine going down stairs and not seeing her. She's always been there. Poor Essy she is a widow 4 times over. I don't know what i'm going to do with her. Try to bond her with the other three.... I got home and held her and told her the news. She never got to say goodbye either.

I'm going to get Rachel cremated. She can sit next to Brighton on my shelf....

The photo is the most recent of Rachel. All of my good ones are on the external hard drive. I don't have any newer ones since my lap top isn't that old.....

Its hurts like hell now. Losing her so soon after Brighton. Just losing my baby girl...

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Review: Night of the Soul Stealer (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles #3) by Joseph Delaney

Book: Night of the Soul Stealer (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles #3)
Author: Joseph Delaney
Release date: 08/16/07

As the weather grows colder and the nights draw in, the Spook and his apprentice Tom Ward must be even more vigilant in their battles against the boggarts, witches, and ghosts roaming the county. When they receive an unexpected visitor, the Spook decides it is time to move to his winter house in Anglezarke. It is a bleak, forbidding place, full of witches and secrets. Tom hears rumors of menacing creatures stirring on the moors nearby, including the evil beast called Golgoth. Who was the mysterious visitor? And is Tom prepared for what he will find in Anglezarke?

I actually finished this book a week ago and just forgotten to write a review. I think mainly it's because i don't have much to say. Compared to the previous two books this one felt like a filler. You learn some important things about characters, but nothing to add to the "larger picture". We also weren't treated to the "freak of the book". Instead we get a failed apprentice that has dabbled way!! to much in the dark arts. We only get our monster for a brief second and it was like Mr. Freeze the monster version. 

All in all 4 instead of 5 bunnies

review: Curse of the Bane (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles #2) by Joseph Delaney

Book: Curse of the Bane (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles #2)
Author: Joseph Delaney
Release Date: 09/01/06


The Spook and his apprentice, Thomas Ward, rid the county of witches, ghosts, boggarts, and other creatures of the dark. And there's some unfinished business to attend to in Priestown. Deep in the catacombs lurks a creature the Spook has never been able to defeat; a force so evil that the whole county is in danger. The Bane!
But the Bane is not their only enemy. The Quisitor arrives, intent on hunting down anyone who meddles with the dark. Thomas Ward and the Spook must prepare for the battle of their lives.

As of late with series the second book hasn't live up to the potential of the first. This cannot be said about the second book of the "Last Apprentice" series. In it Joseph Delaney has proven himself to be a stead fast author whose works has weakened, but appears to be getting better and better.

The tale takes place a few months after the first. Tom and the Spook must journey to Priestown for the funeral of the Spook's brother. There the Spook plans to finish some unfinished busy. Namely finally get rid of the "Bane" once and for all. Things go far from planned. The Bane has basically gotten to most of the town residents and not only that the "Quisitor" has come to town. And he has Alice. Things aren't looking up for Tom and the Spook.

First thing first how they manage to advertise this series to kids is beyond me. This book and series is clearly and utterly YA. I say this because it deals with adult themes and it gets really scary at some points. Here i am at 25 years old and in certain parts i wanted my dog with me. The author goes on to create a driven plot where nothing is as it seems and you're really not certain of anything. Bonus yet is that Alice keeps becoming more and more key to the story. Alice is the type of character where you're not that sure what she's about, but you want to keep routing for her. She knows what she wants and dammit she is going to get it.

The bane is also an interesting creation. In it the author seems to have taken the early idea of the Devil in beast form. The Bane is conniving, tricky, and an interesting horror character different from your normal monsters. He is also extremely scary and you find yourself rooting for Tom to kill.

Tom himself is growing in this book. He's no long the unsure kid as he was in the last book. He knows what he has to do and faces it like a man. The interesting thing with him is that he keeps showing hidden powers within. It probably helps that his mother is more than likely a powerful witch and his best friend one as well. He's become your harry potter of horror.

I'm sure i can say more, but many other reviews have said so. Plus as i have dusted for the first time in months my head is a bit

Final rating: 5 Bunnies. Brilliant writing, characters, and plot development.

Review: The Rake (Lessons in Love #1) by Suzanne Enoch

Book: The Rake (Lessons in Love #1)
Author: Suzanne Enoch
Release Date: 06/01/02


Three determined young ladies vow to give three of London's worst rakes their comeuppance -- but when these rogues turn the tables, who truly learns a lesson in love?
Once upon a time, the notorious Viscount Dare charmed Lady Georgiana Halley out of her innocence -- to win a wager, no less! -- and now he must pay dearly. The, plan is simple: She will use every seductive wile she knows to win Dare's heart...and then break it. But his smoldering gaze once again tempts Georgiana to give in to desire -- and when he astonishes her with a marriage proposal, she wonders: Is he playing yet another game...or could it truly be love this time?

It is book two in my re-read month. "The Rake" was the first book i read by Suzanne Enoch. I find it amazing that i always choose the best in authors series to read first. I was a little slower in reading this one since last week was a busy week. Anyways.... I really can't remember how old i was when i read this book. Nor can i remember where. I just remember loving it and being ecstatic to find out there were two others afterwards.

The hero and heroine unlike many other romances have known each other for quite a long time. In fact that have quite a long history. It was believed that Tristan and Georgiana were going to marry each other when Georgiana first came out. For Georgiana it was innocent love and bliss. And to quote Taylor Swift "She gave him everything she had for a boy that changed his mind". Except Tristan didn't as much change his mind, but seduce her to win a wager. And like the song "they both cried" except they became more plural to mean Georgiana and her "two" friends. Course the incident was summed up to a kiss and not a seduction which saved Georgiana reputation.

Still six years later Georgiana hasn't forgotten what Tristan did and she lets him know every chance she gets. So society seems them as enemies rather than possible marriage partners. So Georgiana and her two friends Evelyn and Lucinda come up with a plan to each teach a man a "love lesson" rather make the man fall in love with them and then dash their hearts to pieces. Georgiana chooses Tristan of course. Which leads her to moving in with him and his entire family to "Help" his one Aunt while she recovers from Gout. Which leads to a rather humorous and unforgettable romance.

I personally loved Tristan and his brothers more than i liked Georgiana. Then again that often turns out this way. I loved every interaction he had with his family. The playfulness and tenderness. He made me want to have him for a brother instead of mine. I'll trade anytime. You could tell from what we heard from various people and himself that he'd really grown up since his wager six years ago with Georgiana. It was nice to see and hear it on more than one front than a simple blanket statement.

Georgiana was quite the heroine as well. While i didn't love her as much as the guys i still loved her. She had a backbone and wasn't going to be a simpering female. She was her own woman and everyone was going to know it. She had her flaws which was a nice coutner point to her brashness and forwardness sometimes. Somethings she didn't think things all the way through and she wasn't above using others if it suited her (but not in a terrible way). It also helped that she had some nice sounding off room with Lucinda and her aunt Frederica.

Together the two of them made a witty couple that were clearly made for each other, but had a few realistic barriers to get through.

Final rating: 5 Bunnies. For great characters, story-line, and for introducing me to my fictional crush Bit Carroway.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Book review: Just Like Heaven (Smythe-Smith Quartet #1) by Julia Quinn

Book: Just Like Heaven (Smythe-Smith Quartet #1)
Author: Julia Quinn
Release Date: May 31st, 2011


Honoria Smythe-Smith is:
A) a really bad violinist
B) still miffed at being nicknamed "Bug" as a child
C) not in love with her older brother's best friend
D) all of the above

Marcus Holroyd is:
A) the Earl of Chatteris
B) regrettably prone to sprained ankles
C) not in love with his best friend's younger sister
D) all of the above

Together they:
A) eat quite a bit of chocolate cake
B) survive a deadly fever and the world's worst musical performance
C) fall quite desperately in love

It's Julia Quinn at her best, so you know the answer is ...
D) all of the above


I would like to start off with that congratulations to the author for getting her groove back. Reading this book felt like reading the Bridgerton books of yester years. It was brilliantly witty and the romance was actually very believable.

Honoria Smythe-Smith and Marcus Holyroyd had known each other for years. Literally. Since Honoria was six to be exact. Therefore the last thing either of them expected was to fall in love with each other. Honoria was simply Marcus's best friend Daniel's little sister and Marcus was Daniel's best friend to Honoria. Then again the last thing either of them expected was for Daniel to have to leave the county, turn things on their ends, and for a home made "mole hole" to turn everything topy turvy. That is what happened though. So forth the lives to these two unlikely lovers got turned on their end and found that the other was more than a friend.

The relationship between Honoria and Marcus was very sweet and one that is entirely realistic. Something i found very refreshing. In a world where love (or lust) at first can be somewhat the norm having two characters with a long history was a nice change. It was something that was building up for a while and it took a twisted ankle and a near death experience for them both to realize their true feelings for each other.

Individually both of them were great as well. Marcus is not your typical hero. He is not described as particularly handsome, is shy and reserved, and doesn't seem to have a line of past lovers that reach the length of my arm. In fact there were no past lovers or mistresses even mentioned. It was merely implied that he wasn't a virgin. I felt myself connecting with him on so many accounts because of his shyness, lack of ability for small talk, and his dislike of being center stage. If there is one thing Julia does well is write heroes who don't always fit the bill. In this case she brought on a new favorite of mine. Long live the shy hero!!

Honoria was beautifully written as well. She wasn't described as drop dead gorgeous or have an amazing body to boot. She was perfectly average and normal whose favorite feature is her eyes. She is loyal to her family and friends. She isn't a shrinking violet, but neither is she the life of the party. She was refreshing normal. Another character that i found myself connecting with.

It's quite the rare instance when i find myself connecting with both hero and heroine in a book and thus this has to be one of my favorite romances in a long time. In fact it's what i would use as a reference for the type of romance i would like in my life (25 and hopelessly single here). The book is neither ground breaking, nor filled with action and adventure. It is one i would highly recommend nonetheless.

Final rating: 5 Bunnies. We have another absolute favorite to add to the list.

Book Review: The Heretic Queen by Michelle Moran

Book: The Heretic Queen
Author: Michelle Moran
Release date: 09/01/2009

In ancient Egypt, a forgotten princess must overcome her family’s past and remake history.

The winds of change are blowing through Thebes. A devastating palace fire has killed the Eighteenth Dynasty’s royal family—all with the exception of Nefertari, the niece of the reviled former queen, Nefertiti. The girl’s deceased family has been branded as heretical, and no one in Egypt will speak their names. A relic of a previous reign, Nefertari is pushed aside, an unimportant princess left to run wild in the palace. But this changes when she is taken under the wing of the Pharaoh’s aunt, then brought to the Temple of Hathor, where she is educated in a manner befitting a future queen.

Soon Nefertari catches the eye of the Crown Prince, and despite her family’s history, they fall in love and wish to marry. Yet all of Egypt opposes this union between the rising star of a new dynasty and the fading star of an old, heretical one. While political adversity sets the country on edge, Nefertari becomes the wife of Ramesses the Great. Destined to be the most powerful Pharaoh in Egypt, he is also the man who must confront the most famous exodus in history.

Sweeping in scope and meticulous in detail, The Heretic Queen is a novel of passion and power, heartbreak and redemption.

Brilliant: adjective. to sparkle, glitter, bright, beam, luminous, this book. This book was everything and above. Again Michelle Moran writes a book which transports you to another time in history and it feels so real that you don't want to leave. You just want to break the time machine and yell "press on young man/woman". Then when you get to the very last page you feel a great deal of sadness for a loss you don't understand. I felt this way at the end of "Nefertiti", but was comforted by the fact there was a sequel in place. Unfortunately this time around there is no such book.

Michelle tells us the story of Nefertari in "The Heretic Queen" started at the tender age of 6. Why this age. Because the book is as much as a romance as a coming of age and in parts action adventure. At the age of 6 Nefertari has her first real memory of the man she would love all her life "Rameses II". We then get a fast forward to Nefertari age 13 and Rameses the great coronation as co-regent of Egypt. We also learn that things aren't all rosey for Princess Nefertari. She is always associated with the "Heretics" and her family name has been wiped clean from Egyptian record. On her mother, Queen Mutnodjmet, who was briefly married to Pharaoh Horemheb name has been left in tact. It is on this day we learn that Nefertari's love for the young prince and her willingness to do whatever it takes to be his wife. Along we way she runs into quite a few obstacles and grows into herself. She finds that her desire become Rameses chief wife is much more than her love for him. She must do it for herself as well.

As i mentioned before i loved this book. It's one of those books you run into every once in awhile that screams perfection in every which way that you can't put it down. Literally. So you find yourself finishing it in one day. There really isn't much more i can say except that if "Nefetiti" stoked my Egyptian obsession this one fanned the flames. I'm now on a hunt to read each and every book that takes place in ancient Egypt.

Final Rating: 5 Bunnies. Bravo Michelle Moran. Bravo! 

Book Review: Nefertiti by Michelle Moran

Book: Nefertiti
Author: Michelle Moran
Release date: 12/29/2009

Nefertiti and her younger sister, Mutnodjmet, have been raised in a powerful family that has provided wives to the rulers of Egypt for centuries. Ambitious, charismatic, and beautiful, Nefertiti is destined to marry Amunhotep, an unstable young pharaoh. It is hoped by all that her strong personality will temper the young Amunhotep’s heretical desire to forsake Egypt’s ancient gods, overthrow the priests of Amun, and introduce a new sun god for all to worship.

From the moment of her arrival in Thebes, Nefertiti is beloved by the people. Her charisma is matched only by her husband’s perceived generosity: Amunhotep showers his subjects with lofty promises. The love of the commoners will not be enough, however, if the royal couple is not able to conceive an heir, and as Nefertiti turns her attention to producing a son, she fails to see that the powerful priests, along with the military, are plotting against her husband’s rule. The only person wise enough to recognize the shift in political winds—and brave enough to tell the queen—is her younger sister, Mutnodjmet.

Observant and contemplative, Mutnodjmet has never shared her sister’s desire for power. She yearns for a quiet existence away from family duty and the intrigues of court. Her greatest hope is to share her life with the general who has won her heart. But as Nefertiti learns of the precariousness of her reign, she declares that her sister must remain at court and marry for political gain, not love. To achieve her independence, Mutnodjmet must defy her sister, the most powerful woman in Egypt—while also remaining loyal to the needs of her family.

Love,betrayal, political unrest, plague, and religious conflict—Nefertiti brings ancient Egypt to life in vivid detail. Fast-paced and historically accurate, it is the dramatic story of two unforgettable women living through a remarkable period in history.

In the course of reading this book i've received two work reviews, got addicted to "glee" and lost my only little boy bunny Brighton. Funny enough these events somehow coincided with certain events in the book which made reading this book rather interesting.

It is true that i took a long time reading this book. This wasn't from lack on interest. In fact it was the complete opposite. I was so enthralled with it that i wanted to pace it out longer.Every once in awhile you come upon a book unexpectedly and they change your whole reading habits. This happened with Jane Austen and my love of classics, Summer at Castle Auburn and love of medievals, Harry Potter and magic, and the jedi apprentice with science fiction.

"Nefertiti" brought on a urging to read more historical fiction. It also has brought on a small Egyptian obsession. I was always interested in Egypt, but this book made me want to know more. Michelle Moran crafted such a beautiful and compelling story that i felt like i was there with Mutnodjmet. I felt her loses, anger, and sadness. It was almost like losing a friend when i finished the book. The last time i felt that sadness was when the Harry Potter series finished. It also left me with a hunger to read more. I hadn't even finished the first 100 pages before i had gone out and bought the sequel. Along with any other Michelle Moran books i could get my hands on.

The book title may be called "Nefertiti", but the story is really about Mutnodjmet. A historical figure i never knew existed till reading the book. Mut character is one that you can't help rooting for. Being the younger sister of the Queen of Egypt couldn't have been easy and Michelle portrays this quite clearly. Yet she still adored her older sister. You follow her through her ups and downs and ups again. The best thing to do is not to read historical record though. If you follow through with history things could get a bit confusing. Based on history you almost with Mut's story was real since it clear she had a happier fate in "Nefertiti" than possibly in real life.

"Nefertiti" was an interesting take on a highly unusual Egyptian time and family. It was a time of change and just as Mut and Nefertiti was changing the whole Egyptian world was changing with them. It was an extremely enjoyable read and one i would highly recommended to everyone. I merely picked up this book in passing because the cover intrigued me and i'm extremely glad i did.

Final rating. 5 stars for perfection.

Review: The Duke and I by Julia Quinn (re-read)

Book: The Duke and I
Author: Julia Quinn
Release date: Jan 1st, 2000 (a re-read for me)

Can there be any greater challenge to London's Ambitious Mamas than an unmarried duke?
--- Lady Whistledown's Society Papers, April 1813

By all accounts, Simon Basset is on the verge of proposing to his best friend's sister, the lovely---and almost-on-the-shelf---Daphney Bridgerton. But the two of them know the truth--it's all an elaborate plan to keep Simon free from marriage-minded society mothers. And as for Daphne, surely she will attract some worthy suitors now that it seems a duke has declared her desirable.

But as Daphne waltzes across ballroom after ballroom with Simon, it's hard to remember that their courtship is a complete sham. Maybe it's his devilish smile, certainly it's the way his eyes seem to burn every time he looks at her...but somehow Daphne is falling for the dashing duke...for real! And now she must do the impossible and convince the handsome rogue that their clever little scheme deserves a slight alteration, and that nothing makes quite as much sense as falling in love..

My Review:
Wow. What a difference a few years can make when reading a book. The first time i read "The Duke and I" i was 16 years old. I was young, innocent, and naive. I couldn't get enough of romance books.And i just adored every single Julia Quinn book i could get my hands on. Eleven years later, a grown single woman, i find myself still loving the book. Loved the book so much in fact that except for the first 20 pages i read it all in one afternoon/evening sitting. I haven't done that in a very very long time. Even with the most recent books i've jadored it's taken me 2-3 days to finish a book. I definitely think there is something to be said about the romances that were coming out in the early 2000's.

In this book, Julia introduces us to the famous "Bridgerton" family. One of the families I automatically connect in my mind with romance. Daphne is the eldest daughter of the family and after two seasons without a decent proposal is starting to lose hope. That doesn't deter her mother, Violet, from trying though. And so she is introduced to bachelor after bachelor. Every ball and party. Daphne knows the truth of things though. She is the "girl next store". The girl every man likes to chat with, but doesn't see as marriageable match. The ones that do she's rather didn't. Then she meets her brother Anthony's old friend and all that changes....

Simon is your typical hero in many ways. He's a Duke. Rich. Tall, dark, and handsome. And he has some issues. Big daddy ones and a surprisely stammering/stuttering problem that he's dealt with all his life. His goal on returning to England was to avoid society as much as possible. After all. He had no plans to marry or have children so why should he become involved. Yet society doesn't feel the same way about him and of course he gets tangled into it. At an event hosted by Lady Dansbury, Simon finds himself in a position that was more than he bargained for. He was quite happy to help out his friend Anthony's sister; he was not happy about becoming the newest catch to hit the ton. So he makes a bargain with Daphne. They'll pretend to form a attachment so that she may attract more men and he attract less women. If only Simon didn't start wishing the attachment wasn't fake...

On the topic of the two main characters i loved Simon. I've had to deal with speech issues all my life and found myself commiserating with him a lot. It was nice to have a character voice the issues that those of use who have trouble with certain sounds and words go through. It was far easier for me to connect with him than Daphne. Daphne on the other hand had some moments where i found myself wanting to hit her. The most being when she had sex with him when he was drunk because she wanted his sperm. I did not mistype that. Now that really didn't bother me when i was younger, but looking at it now i does bother me some. It was cruel of her to do so and in a way a bit violating. Yet the issue was never discussed in great length. It was merely shoved under the rug later when Simon basically says, not in these words, he could have stopped her if he wanted to. Something i'm not entirely sure of. If the character was fine with it i'll let it be since it wasn't rape and he doesn't entirely doing "it" against his will.

Together, Daphne and Simon work out quite well. They bounced right off of each other and could roll with things. Mostly.

Before i end this i should probably mention this story was the first appearance of Lady Whistledown. A brilliant creation of Julia's especially when you look at the whole series at once.

Final rating. 4 1/2. I only had one issue with the book and it was what i discussed above.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Review: Death Cloud (Young Sherlock Holmes #1) by Andy Lane

Book: Death Cloud (Young Sherlock Holmes #1)
Author: Andy Lane
Release date: 02/01/11

It is the summer of 1868, and Sherlock Holmes is fourteen. On break from boarding school, he is staying with eccentric strangers—his uncle and aunt—in their vast house in Hampshire. When two local people die from symptoms that resemble the plague, Holmes begins to investigate what really killed them, helped by his new tutor, an American named Amyus Crowe. So begins Sherlock’s true education in detection, as he discovers the dastardly crimes of a brilliantly sinister villain of exquisitely malign intent.

So i originally got this book for my sister for her birthday last march. Every time i walked into her room i would see it un-read sitting on her book shelf. Well i decided to pick it up and start reading it. Interesting enough the first thing i found out is that this is book was authorized and endorsed by the estate if Arthur Conan Doyle. Seeing that i knew it had to be good. I'm glad to say i wasn't disappointed.

The book starts out with thirteen year old Sherlock Holmes getting read to leave Deepdene School for Boys. He's waiting for his father to pick him up, but unexpectedly Mycroft Holmes is the one to collect him. Mycroft did not come bringing good news. Sherlock's father has been called to duty in the East Indies and his mother is too sickly for him to come home. Neither does Mycroft have the time to watch in in London. Therefore he is going to stay with a uncle he's never met in a town called Farnham. Needless to say Sherlock is not the least bit pleased. Course Sherlock being who he is and destiny decided to come a knocking early. No sooner had he gotten settled in that a second man is found dead of a mysterious illness. Sherlock, along with his friend Matty, American tutor Amyus Crowe, Amyus's daughter Virginia, set out to discover why.

My impression of this book is that it definitely was worth it's endorsement by the Doyle estate. Written in a tone similar to Conan Doyle's you really feel like your reading about the earlier adventures of Sherlock. Not quite the detective mastermind yet you can see how Sherlock would turn into the man he would become. Interesting enough i'm quite curious as to see what happens to Matty and the Crowe's later on. To my knowledge they don't appear in any of the original stories.

Needless to say i'll be reading the sequel that is to come out. Whether i'll be getting it for my sister of myself is the question.

Final Rating: 4 1/2 Bunnies. There were some minor flaws in the book that kept it from being a 5. Plus a 5 star book for me is one where i jadored it. I liked this book, but didn't love love love it.

Review: "Heiress in Love" by Christina Brooke

Book: Heiress in Love (Ministry of Marriage book 1)
Author: Christina Brooke
Release Date: June 28, 2011

During the course of reading this book i found the title unfitting of the story. I do believe "Pride and Prejudice: The hero is not Mr. Darcy, nor is the heroine Lizzie; but they share some similarities and it's rather fitting of a title". Too Long. How about this " Trust and the Regency Romance". No. Sounds too much like a non-fiction title. How about "To trust a rake and other stuff". Shorten it down to "To Trust a Rake" and i think we found a winner. Because truthfully the heroine was actually a widow and was really in lust most of the time. Love came later. Like in chocolate you lust for it and then love it.

See i'm on the fence on this one. I neither dislike it, nor am i over the moon for it. I'm stuck quite firmly in the middle. Some background information. Jane, Lady Roxdale, has just been widowed. Worse yet her husband kicked the bucket in the middle of "entertaining a lady friend". To save face Jane pretends it was her, but still. Her husband just died in bed in the middle of sex and everyone knows it. How humiliating. To make matters even worse seeing as no heir was produced everything is set to go to the next in line for the title.Her husbands cousin Constantine Black who is as big of a blackguard as his name is (as if that analogy hasn't been used before). The only thing Jane can hope is that the man allows her enough time to get hers, and Luke's (her dead husbands 6 year old ward) things in order to leave. The one thing she didn't expect was for her ex to screw up her life anymore than he already had, nor did she expect Constantine to as handsome as he was.

Constantine Black: Rouge, scoundrel, society pariah, and misunderstood & wrongfully accused hero. He's just like every other Black Night ever to live. Muscled, handsome, with the sex drive of a bunny rabbit to boot. The last thing he ever expected was for his dead cousins widow to be so appealing. The very very last thing he expected was for his idiot cousin to leave him the land and the money to his wife. So it stands he hand the property, but not the funds to keep it. The only thing to do is to marry chit. If only she wouldn't look at like she wanted to ravish him all the while impaling him in the heart with sewing needle at the same time.

As i said earlier i'm in the middle with this book. It may be me, but i don't find the whole lust then love thing exciting. Rather boring actually. My favorite parts of this book was when the hero and heroine wasn't trying to undress each other with their eyes or literally. I actually would have enjoyed more of those parts. I will also say i thoroughly enjoyed every scene that Lady Arden and the Duke of Monford appears. I want them to have their own book!! It would be interesting to see read their story seeing as to their background.

As to the hero and heroine individually... i'm in the middle with them as well. They seemed interesting at first, but after awhile i started wishing for the book to end. It just went on and on and i'm like just get one with it already. Oh look a Robin! I feel like i'm getting sun burnt on my back (I was reading it outside). As you can read my mind started to wonder towards the end. Not a good thing.

Also note. This author does not write a very good "tortured hero". A mildly irritated one, but not tortured. The heroine was a bit of a haughty prick sometimes as well.....

All in all and ok book. I do want to read the next on though. It seems to hold more promise. The brief glimpse of the hero for it we had in this book was also quite entertaining as well.

Final rating: 3 Bunnies. Good premises, but it feel short of many accounts.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 review.

LOVED IT!!!!!!

I got home from work around 5:45ish and Ashley calls on the phone. She and Matt are at the theater getting their tickets because they’re nearly sold out for the premiere. The manager told them that they’ve never had as big a premiere before. In fact they have to get tickets for Deathly Hallows p1 as well just to have a seat for the premiere with me. In fact, I was extremely lucky to be seeing it in 3D because if you got 2D tickets you’d have to leave the theater afterwards and hope to find a good seat.

She tells me that there are already people waiting in line dressed as Gryffindor/ Syltherin students and that a whole bunch is walking around the mall. So I feed the buns real quick, get into my Gryffindor uniform (with shorts this time and my HP buttons), and head down to the theater. For the first time it actually felt like those big premieres with a bunch of fans because I was able to debate the series for a while.

At 8pm we were allowed to enter the theater and Ash and Matt made the right choice of showing up then. They were only showing Part 1 in the two 3D theaters and the one I was in was quite full. Ash and Matt had never been to a midnight showing of a film with such a large fan base and found the other fans’s reactions interesting and somewhat funny. I just took in the first film entirely knowing that I’ll never see it on big screen again.

Then it was time for the premiere. It was so bittersweet knowing that it was the last time I would see a HP movie at midnight I almost cried over that thought alone. I will say it was EPIC!!!!! I adored it and it is one of my favorite in the franchise. That is not to say it is without its issues. I’m going to see it again next weekend (Not going this weekend. It is going to be nutty) and will be able to have a bigger picture of the flim. I was in too much awe this time around.

I will say I loved 99% of it. I loathe the whole Tonks/Remus relationship and was glad that part was down played extremely. They should have left out the whole “son” thing though. If Ash hasn’t heard me ranting about the relationship and kid should would have never had known WTH it was about (neither she nor Matt read the last 3 books). I was also glad the romance was kept to a minimum. The movie has left me conflicted though. I’m now a Harry/Luna, Harry/Hermione, & Luna/Neville shipper. I say we go for the four way and fix it all together.

Speaking of Neville…. Where was a giant moment of glory? I was disappointed his glory moments weren’t as big and he was made fun of a bit. I was really looking forward to seeing Neville being the big dame hero he was in the book.

Another thing I’m a bit disappointed is that we still don’ know how Remus , Tonks, and Fred died. I mean Remus is literally dead of the ground again. I’m guessing Fred died from a curse. I think there was a scene with a death eater doing something to him while he was in the corner. Guess he didn’t die from the wall hitting him… The movie was nice and cleared up what happened to Griphook and Lavender. Griphood, Death by crazed Voldie, and Lavender, death by psychotic werewolf.

Speaking of Voldemort, Ralph Fiennes deserves a freaking Oscar for his role. He was completely and utterly brilliant. You could just see Voldemort going crazier and crazier. He was completely amazing. The battle between Harry and Him was how it should have been in the books. I couldn’t have asked for more.

Another actor worthy of praise was Alec Rickman. Now I didn’t cry through any of the film. I thought I would during the “I’m about to die” part, but apparently the book is more emotional there. But dame! I was almost shedding tears during Snape’s death and memories scenes. Those scenes were perfect. I couldn’t have asked for more.

I really need to see the movie again to get a complete opinion as I have mentioned before. Time to dissect things again….. But still 100% made of Win.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

I'm not dead... i've just joined the world of working joes


I'm alive... I'm alive. Seriously. I didn't realize till now it's been march since i've last posted anything here. The beginning of March actually. Let's see what i've been up to...

1) I'm still working full time as a pharmacy technician. I've accepted it's my lot in life and vow to start studying for the national exam. I will. Promise. I keep telling myself the sooner i do the faster i can find a job that pays more than poverty rate.

2) I've lost my special little boy. Brighton Bunny passed away in May. He was seven almost eight. He is still greatly missed.

3) I've had multiple vet visits for Rachel bunny and Izzy (dog). They know me well enough that when they called in a med for Izzy at my work; they knew it was me on the phone and said they were calling in one for "my dog".

4) Given online dating a try. Learned that online dating is not for me. Did get my first kiss. Got disgusted later by man giving kiss. Prefer to push said experience out of mind.

5) I turned 25. I'm officially the 25 year old spinster who is still living in her parents house. Sad. I know.

6) My old computer held up it's white flag and decided it had enough. So now i have a laptop that is connected to my old computer screen. So cool. I feel like i can play secret spy with it.

7) I've fell in love with historical fiction.

8) I've officially run out of room in my room for my books. Next step renovation since knocking down the wall to gain access over the garage isn't plausible, nor can i afford my own place to make my own library. Come September.  My walls are getting a makeover. They're getting painted a new color and instead of a border I'm going to have bookshelves lining the top of my room............ Ashley thinks i'm going to be on a future episode of "Hoarders".

9) I've watched my childhood/teenage years fly away with the end of Harry Potter and the closing of Borders.

& 10) Well..i'm not interesting enough to have ten new things in my life. 

Sunday, March 20, 2011

review: Revenge of the Witch (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles #1) by Joseph Delaney

Book: Revenge of the Witch (The Last Apprentice / Wardstone Chronicles #1
Author: Joseph Delaney
Release date: Aug 1st, 2006

"I was going to learn how to protect farms and villages from things that go bump in the night. Dealing with ghouls, boggarts, and all manner of wicked beasties would be all in a day's work. That's what the Spook did, and I was going to be his apprentice." Twelve-year-old Thomas Ward, as the seventh son of a seventh son, has no inheritance and is bored with farm work, and even though his new job will mean the superstitious villagers will forever shun him, he is eager to go off to adventure with the tall, hooded man he calls the Spook. His mother, a magical person herself, approves, and the Spook's teaching is strict but kind. But when Tom has only learned enough to be able to control their house-boggart, he is tricked by Alice, the young daughter of a witch family, into inadvertently releasing and then killing Mother Malkin, a witch the Spook has imprisoned in a pit. This is no polite wicca-type witch, but a snuffling, slime-trailing, cannibalistic creature reminiscent of Tolkien's nasgils. The story of Tom's escape from the reincarnated witch's hideous revenge is full of horrible details, as Alice helps, and then once again betrays him. This well-crafted novel marks an auspicious start for an exciting and fast series for young teens.

Wow.. just.. WOW... I picked this book up at Borders last weekend and started reading it almost immediately. Now at first it took me awhile to get into it, but when it did... It was brilliant. I have to say quite refreshing to see all the things that go bumping through the night in their original forms. Our current literary culture has sort of white washed all things paranormal so that they're aren't scary anymore. That is not the case with this series. This book was written for mid-teens and here i am almost 25 and i got scared.

The setting it what i would say 17th century Europe. Young Tom is the seventh son of the seventh son and it is his mother's wish that he become a "Spook". Spooks are people who deal with all things evil, paranormal, or just not right. People need them, but they don't want to be around them. Needless to say Tom isn't looking forward to the job. It doesn't help matters that barely two weeks into his apprenticeship he meets Alice. A girl with pointy shoes. Someone the spook said he should avoid at all cost. That mistake basically sets forth the whole series and book.

It's after this point that Mr. Delaney starts to weave a suspenseful tail. Just like Tom you're not sure whom to trust and or what to do. All you know is that you have to keep on reading. Needless to say i've already ordered the next two books from amazon. ^^

Rating: 5 Bunnies. Brilliant and original.


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Review: Soon I will be Invincible by Austin Grossman

Book: Soon I will be Invincible by Austin Grossman
Release DateJune 5th 2007


Doctor Impossible—evil genius, diabolical scientist, wannabe world dominator—languishes in a federal detention facility. He's lost his freedom, his girlfriend, and his hidden island fortress.

Over the years he's tried to take over the world in every way imaginable: doomsday devices of all varieties (nuclear, thermonuclear, nanotechnological) and mass mind control. He's traveled backwards in time to change history, forward in time to escape it. He's commanded robot armies, insect armies, and dinosaur armies. Fungus army. Army of fish. Of rodents. Alien invasions. All failures. But not this time. This time it’s going to be different...

Fatale is a rookie superhero on her first day with the Champions, the world's most famous superteam. She's a patchwork woman of skin and chrome, a gleaming technological marvel built to be the next generation of warfare. Filling the void left by a slain former member, we watch as Fatale joins a team struggling with a damaged past, having to come together in the face of unthinkable evil.

Soon I Will Be Invincible is a thrilling first novel; a fantastical adventure that gives new meaning to the notions of power, glory, responsibility, and (of course) good and evil

First thing first i wasn't sure what to think coming into this book. I got this book from bookswamp on a whim and have had it sitting on my shelf for awhile. The other day i decided i wanted to read something different and grabbed it. I'm so very glad i did. 

First props to Austin Grossman for staring out with Doctor Impossible's POV. If it was Fatale's POV first i'm not sure i would have been as hooked as i was. Mainly because Doctor Impossible was the star of the book for me. I loved him and would have been just as happy reading only from his POV. Being that this book is a satire of the superhero genre i would have to say he was a mix of Magneto and Lex Luthor. Though in my mind since i read DC Comics and Dark Horse he was more of a parody of Lex Luthor mixed with some Riddler, Toyman, and the Penguin. I don't really read any Marvel. That being said of course CoreFire was a direct parody of Superman/Spiderman if i ever saw one. Away from that, most Superhero books rarely ever go into the minds of a villain. If they do it's often one dimensional. The same cannot be said for Doctor Impossible. You really got to see him dive into his psyche and see's what drives him. And the thing about it as a reader i could associate myself with him more than any of the Superhero's. Whom among us who were picked on or ignored at school would love just to be a super villain and rub it into those people's faces. Course the sane ones of us don't. One thing i really loved about Doctor Impossible is that he's not insane. He just knows he's better and smarter than everyone-else and why not flaunt it. Therefore when he breaks out of prison why not take over the world. He's obviously the right person to run it. At least in his head.

Now onto the Superhero crowd. First things first, i didn't like Fatale or any of the superheroes much. They pretty much all annoyed me. I found Fatale to be a bit to whiny and the other hero's dull. I will admit i share Fatale's wish to hurt Elphin and kinda of wanted to see Rainbow Triumph die. They were all such one deminsion. The only one of interest was Regina. Whose story was a direct rip of Narnia. Still she was the most interesting for some reason. 

Plot wise sometimes "Soon I will Be Invincible" lagged. As in speed it up. The beginning went quite fast and the end was very much a page turner. Especially the twist with Lily. That was something i never saw coming. You hear about two separate people the whole book and not once do you put them together. Till you read it and it all makes since. What type of superhero book would be without a Joker like beginning.

All in all, i'm looking forward to the next in the series. ^^

Final rating:
4 Bunnies. Interesting plot and characters that left me wanting to read more. Does have some corny bits to it though. 

Friday, January 21, 2011

Review: A Werewolf in Manhattan (Wild About You #1) by Vicki Lewis Thompson

Book: A Werewolf in Manhattan (Wild About You #1) by Vicki Lewis Thompson
Release Date:  01/04/2011

 Emma Gavin writes about werewolves, but that doesn't mean she believes in them-not until a pack of real-life New York weres decide to investigate the striking accuracy of her "fiction".
When Aiden Wallace, son and heir of the pack leader, tries to sniff out Emma's potential informant, he discovers something even more dangerous- an undeniable attraction to her.

I was very excited about this book. I love Vicki Lewis Thompson since i read "Babe on a Broomstick" and couldn't wait to start this one. If only i had the same enthusiasm to finish it. To put it blankly i know Vicki tends to walk a fine line between sex and erotic sex. The thing is that in the books i've read is that the sex was secondary to the bigger storyline. A storyline that is often so witty and funny i can't put it down. This book seemed to have the word "sex,good looking", or similar adverbs/adjectives every other page. I get it. Both Emma and Aiden just seem very very oversexed. I felt the need to yell at them to go get a room and get it over with so i can get back with the story. Needless to say i never finish the book. I just couldn't take it anymore. So i'm putting it on my bookshelf to try it perhaps some other time.  

Final Say: This was a great disappointment. I'm almost glad it's going to be about a year before the next one comes out. It'll give me time to decide if i want to read it or not.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Want it now" The Throne of Fire" by Rick Riordan

from amazon:In this exciting second installment of the three-book series, Carter and Sadie, offspring of the brilliant Egyptologist Dr. Julius Kane, embark on a worldwide search for the Book of Ra, but the House of Life and the gods of chaos are determined to stop them. 

OMG!!! Can't wait for this to come out. I jadored the first one and really really really want this one out now. I can't wait till May 3rd.  


                                     "Change isn't good or bad. It just is"-- Don Draper "Mad Men".

I'm never around here anymore I know. Mostly because i've been feeling like this:

because of work. Earlier this year i decided to change my hair color when i was unhappy. I'm doing something just as dramatic now..... I'm changing jobs. Not job descriptions though. Working at CVS has been entirely and utterly stressful. Add a co-worker who seems determined to treat me like the dirt under her feet i usually come home in one of these moods.

As you can see very little happy face. Mostly i come home exhausted and burnt out. Now I like all but the one co-worker, but the fact of the matter is that i feel like i get no respect, underpaid at that, and i'm one of the eldest people in the pharmacy yet get treated like i'm one of the youngest. So around Christmastime i started debating on looking at other jobs. On a whim two weeks ago i asked the pharmacist at our local Target if they were hiring. I've always heard great things about Target. I found out they were hiring and Janelle told me to go home right then and fill out the application. (I did sort off. I had to first stop and look for medicine for Rachel bunny. Rachel was sick for the past month, but she's all better now. Now Mary is sick with some tummy issue). I got the interview on the 10th and i found out i got the job on the 13th. ^^ So now i'm going to be a pharmacy technician at  Target pharmacy. It would be full time hours (32-40h), M-F, and i'll get a pay raise (from $8 to $10.75) to start. When i pass the national exam i'll get a raise as well. Also the job is only 3 minutes away from my house instead of 30. So less travel time. I start on February the 1st.

Now admittedly i'm going to miss a lot of my co-workers and pharmacist. Besides the one they've always been very kind. I've had a lot of laughs and some good times. The thing is that i feel that i got to do this. I'm not entirely all that happy and i wish to be. I also want to have more energy to do the things i love like read or walk the dogs. Instead of just flopping in bed exhausted.  Too tired to read or even get on the computer. With this new job i might even give online dating a try (if i can find a good site. I'm going to be 25 in two months i'm getting pretty pathetic to say i've never had a boyfriend). I have no idea why i'm writing this here... I sort of feel like i owe an explanation why i've been MIA..... So as Don Draper says "Change is neither good nor bad. It just is".... So here's to the new change in my life.