Review: Wicked Nights by Gena Showalter

30th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: Wicked Nights by Gena ShowalterWicked Nights by Gena Showalter
Series: Angels of the Dark #1
Published by HQN
Pub Date: June 26th 2012
Pages: 411
Format: Paperback | Source: Publisher
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance
Buy the book! | Goodreads
4 Stars

Leader of the most powerful army in the heavens, Zacharel has been deemed nearly too dangerous, too ruthless and if he isn't careful, he'll lose his wings. But this warrior with a heart of ice will not be deterred from his missions at any cost until a vulnerable human tempts him with a carnal pleasure he's never known before.

Accused of a crime she did not commit, Annabelle Miller has spent four years in an institution for the criminally insane. Demons track her every move, and their king will stop at nothing to have her. Zacharel is her only hope for survival, but is the brutal angel with a touch as hot as hell her salvation or her ultimate damnation?

Gena Showalter has beyond successfully created another slew of tortured male heroes we are bound to fall in love with. These dark angels are in the same league as our beloved Lords of the Underworld.

Is there ever a more touching hero than one who is racked with unwarranted guilt? Zacharel made his way to my heart from the start, despite his icy demeanor. Watching him thaw in the presence of Annabelle was a delight. He was so confused by his feelings, it was comical at times. His actions toward these new feelings and emotions come off very believable…unlike, maybe, Annabelle at times. To me, for having gone through everything she went through these past few years, she was very open to the idea of being with Zacharel pretty early on. I didn’t think it was odd that she’d want to trust him right away, considering her circumstances, she didn’t really have many options, but her desire for him blossomed a little too soon for me. That was really my only issue, because I really liked her otherwise. She’s tough and she had a great sense of humor.

We get to meet a few of the other dark angels and let me tell you – get ready! These angels are going to put us through an emotional wringer, I just know it! Oh! And I was very surprised by myself when I made a huge prediction about this story that was spot on. Go, me! I was also very pleasantly surprised by certain characters making cameo appearances…but that’s all I’ll say about that. ;)

Fans of Gena Showalter will not be disappointed by this awesome start to a new series! And people wanting to try her books out, what better place to start. If you’re in the mood for a kick-butt, sexy paranormal romance, Wicked Nights is just what you’re looking for.

 

About Gena Showalter

Gena Showalter is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author whose books have appeared in Cosmopolitan and Seventeen magazines, as well as Entertainment Weekly. Her novel Red Handed has been optioned by Sony Television. Critics have called her books “sizzling page-turners” and “utterly spellbinding stories,” while Showalter herself has been called “a star on the rise.” Her mix of humor, danger and wickedly hot sex provides wildly sensual page-turners sure to enthrall.

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Best Reads So Far In 2012 | Birthday Wish Character

29th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Follow Friday, TGIF

Best Reads So Far In 2012 | Birthday Wish Character

TGIF!

This week’s TGIF! question: Best I’ve Read So Far: We’re half way through the year (crazy how time flies!), which top 3 books are the best you’ve read so far this year?

I’ve read so many great books so far this year! It was a tough decision!! So I picked 5, hahaha! And here they are, in no particular order:

somethinglikenormalshinesucharush
thefaultinourstarstheskyiseverywhere

gwtw-separate-line

Follow Friday

This week’s Follow Friday question: Birthday Wishes — Blow out the candles and imagine what character could pop out of your cake…who is it and what book are they from??

Easy. Seth Mortensen from Richelle Mead’s Georgina Kincaid series. I LOVE HIM!!! Though he’s so not the jump-out-of-a-cake type of guy, lol.

This is Eion Bailey, who played August Booth in Once Upon a Time, the tv show.

 

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Review: Summer Nights by Susan Mallery

28th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: Summer Nights by Susan MallerySummer Nights by Susan Mallery
Series: Fool's Gold #8
Published by HQN
Pub Date: June 26th 2012
Pages: 378
Format: eARC | Source: NetGalley
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Buy the book! | Goodreads
4.5 Stars

Horse whisperer Shane Stryker is done with passion. This time around, he's determined to meet someone who will be content with the quiet life of a rancher's wife. And the fiery, pint-size redhead who dazzles him at the local bar definitely does not fit the bill.

Small-town librarian Annabelle Weiss has always seen herself as more of a sweetheart than a siren, so she can't understand why Shane keeps pushing her away. Shane has formed the totally wrong impression of her but only he can help her with a special event for the next Fool's Gold festival. And maybe while he's at it, she can convince him to teach her a few things about kissing on hot summer nights, too—some lessons, a girl shouldn't learn from reading a book!

Summer Nights has got to be Susan Mallery’s steamiest book in the Fool’s Gold series to date! I found it completely fun, flirty, and sexy.

Shane Stryker was a breath of fresh air. He started off this book by falling completely in lust with our heroine, Annabelle. We don’t get to read many books where the guy completely loses it over the girl right off the bat! It was satisfying reading about him stumbling for words in her presence. And oh, my lord, was Shane Stryker a sexy character once you got him alone in a bedroom!! Wowza! He did have a few hang-ups over his evil ex-wife that he needed to get over, but I understood that Annabelle being the first person he’s been serious about since the ex, he would have some reservations. But if anyone would get through that wall it would be Annabelle.

Annabelle is the type of woman a lot of us want to be. She’s smart, and funny, and sexy in a low-key way. She cares about making a difference in peoples lives, she’s kind and thoughtful, and can make her man go crazy in the bedroom. That’s what we all want to be like, isn’t it?! Well, maybe not everyone, but a lot of us, yes. I loved her chemistry with Shane and the way she kept things light and fun in their relationship, but she also stood her ground when it came to what she wanted and what she didn’t need.

The town is still as charming as ever, and there were a few hints of possible new businesses and also the status of the casino! I wonder if we’ll know by the next book in the series what and who the next three books after All Summer Long will be about. I’m definitely very intrigued to see how All Summer Long will play out, actually. It will most certainly be entertaining, and I suspect very touching as well. I look forward to it!

 

About Susan Mallery

With more than 25 million books sold worldwide, New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery is known for creating characters who feel as real as the folks next door, and for putting them into emotional, often funny situations readers recognize from their own lives. Susan’s books have made Booklist’s Top 10 Romances list in four out of five consecutive years. RT Book Reviews says, “When it comes to heartfelt contemporary romance, Mallery is in a class by herself.” With her popular, ongoing Fool’s Gold series, Susan has reached new heights on the bestsellers lists and has won the hearts of countless new fans.

Susan grew up in southern California, moved so many times that her friends stopped writing her address in pen, and now has settled in Seattle with her husband and the most delightfully spoiled little dog who ever lived. Visit Susan online at www.SusanMallery.com.

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Guest Post: Susan Mallery Speaks to Us about the Appeal of Romance

27th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Guest Posts

Guest Post: Susan Mallery Speaks to Us about the Appeal of RomanceSummer Nights by Susan Mallery
Series: Fool's Gold #8
Published by HQN
Pub Date: June 26th 2012
Buy the book! | Goodreads

Horse whisperer Shane Stryker is done with passion. This time around, he's determined to meet someone who will be content with the quiet life of a rancher's wife. And the fiery, pint-size redhead who dazzles him at the local bar definitely does not fit the bill.

Small-town librarian Annabelle Weiss has always seen herself as more of a sweetheart than a siren, so she can't understand why Shane keeps pushing her away. Shane has formed the totally wrong impression of her but only he can help her with a special event for the next Fool's Gold festival. And maybe while he's at it, she can convince him to teach her a few things about kissing on hot summer nights, too—some lessons, a girl shouldn't learn from reading a book!

New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery was asked to speak this summer at the American Library Association national conference in Anaheim, California, on a panel called “Isn’t It Romantic?” Mallery’s latest book, SUMMER NIGHTS (Fool’s Gold book 8 – Available now!) is dedicated to librarians who have done so much to introduce readers to her books. This is the speech she prepared, which I’m happy to be sharing with all of you today. :)


The appeal in romance is that our books offer readers a celebration of community. Romances are all about connecting. Sure the boy-meets-girl part is fun and exciting, but often what really brings a reader back again and again are the connections made within the novel.

Most romances happen in a larger context of relationships. Families and friends play an important role. We want to experience falling in love with a hunky guy, but we also want a sense of belonging. The most popular books feature a cast of usually likeable, sometimes annoying, generally realistic characters who are amazingly like people we know. Or people we get on an emotional level.

These other characters, sometimes seemingly unimportant, can be the glue that holds our books together. Our hero and heroine are revealed through their relationships with secondary characters. The gruff solitary man who unexpectedly cares for a wounded puppy wins our heart forever. The exhausted single mother staying up until midnight to frost cupcakes for her son’s first grade class reminds us of ourselves. While the romance is central to the story and the reason we think we read “those kind of books” I believe the real truth is we love the sense of community a romance brings to the table. The sexy guy on the cover draws us in, but the heroine’s relationship with her sarcastic best friend turns out to be just as satisfying and meaningful.

young attractive woman relaxing and talking on telephone at homeThe majority of romance readers are women. Women are usually the keepers of relationships in their lives and the lives of those around them. We are the ones who maintain the friendships, remember birthdays, make sure each of our children has a moment to feel special. We can spend a weekend with our girlfriends and when we get home, still think of something we could have told them. When I travel to a writers’ conference and hang out with my writer friends for days, then return home and get a call from one of them, my husband can’t believe there’s anything left to say. I’ve tried to explain there’s always more to talk about but he just shakes his head.

In our lives we want friends and family. We want connection. Romances offer that in our fiction. We can meet women we want to have lunch with and men we want to fall in love with. Romance isn’t man against nature or man against himself. It’s man and woman falling in love in a much bigger context. One or both of them have a family, there are friends, coworkers, pets. It’s a real world populated by the funny and the strange and if done well, it’s a world we want to return to again and again.

For years now, romances have been written in groups. Trilogies, sisters, brothers, a band of warriors. Sherrilyn Kenyon gives us her immortal warriors. Debbie Macomber gives us Cedar Cove. In between lie stories only limited by the imaginations of the writers who create them. It is the combination of the familiar and the unknown that draws us back.

I started writing in category romance. I wrote about 80 books for Silhouette. I wrote about sisters and cousins and brothers and even neighboring sheik kingdoms. The longer a series went on, the more readers responded. When I moved into writing single title, I continued with families. One day a very successful writer friend sat me down and said, “Write about a town. It’s limitless.”

parade-routeFrom that very intelligent advice, my Fool’s Gold series was born. www.foolsgoldca.com It’s a small town set in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. I started with the idea of a town suffering a man shortage, which gave me the chance to put women in non-traditional jobs. I decided to write the books in trilogies, with the idea each trilogy would stand on its own, allowing readers to join at any point. By the second Fool’s Gold trilogy I’d realized the man shortage wasn’t that interesting, but the non-traditional jobs were, so modifications were made.

Reader response has been terrific. They love the town. Mayor Marsha, California’s longest serving mayor, is a fan favorite. I keep track of previous heroes and heroines using a data base and often feature births in subsequent books. I use social media to increase the level of connection with my readers. We have the usual interactions, but there is another level on my Facebook page, www.facebook.com/susanmallery. Readers help me name characters, pick careers and suggest new businesses for the towns. When a former heroine is due to give birth, readers usually vote on the gender of the baby and offer name suggestions. Next year three new businesses will open in Fool’s Gold and each one of them is the result of something a reader said to me.

A romance can take place nearly anywhere, in any time. We have smart ass heroines who rescue themselves, timid virgins and librarians who dance on bars in our books. Every romance writer has a specific vision for what she wants to write, but what we all have in common is connection. Sisters who are drawn together because of a dying parent. Vampires fighting enemies while protecting the women they love. Handsome dukes who marry the most unlikely of spinsters, drawn to her against all odds, in part because she takes care of her younger siblings.

In romances we find the relationships that matter most to us personally. Those who adore babies in books can be endless entertained by the antics of newborns. If you prefer sexy, sassy heroines, there are dozens of writers to give you exactly that. The appeal of romance is how the stories speak to us so personally. They show us women who are brave, who overcome odds, who always have a snappy comeback and in the end find not just love, but also a place to belong. Romances celebrate the very best of us, and that ideal state is often illustrated in the connections our characters make with each other.

Romances are a reading escape that also touches the heart. Romances affirm what is most important to each of us—the people we love, who love us back.


I love Susan, and this speech only makes me love her more. I just felt like yelling “PREACH!!” with my hand raised. Thank you, Susan and Jenel, for letting me share this with my readers. :)

 

About Susan Mallery

With more than 25 million books sold worldwide, New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery is known for creating characters who feel as real as the folks next door, and for putting them into emotional, often funny situations readers recognize from their own lives. Susan’s books have made Booklist’s Top 10 Romances list in four out of five consecutive years. RT Book Reviews says, “When it comes to heartfelt contemporary romance, Mallery is in a class by herself.” With her popular, ongoing Fool’s Gold series, Susan has reached new heights on the bestsellers lists and has won the hearts of countless new fans.

Susan grew up in southern California, moved so many times that her friends stopped writing her address in pen, and now has settled in Seattle with her husband and the most delightfully spoiled little dog who ever lived. Visit Susan online at www.SusanMallery.com.

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Tune in Tuesday: Something Like Normal – After the Storm

26th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Tune In Tuesday, Tunes for Books

Tune in Tuesday: Something Like Normal – After the Storm

Tune in Tuesday is brought to us by the lovely Ginger of GReads!

Last week a very special book was released to the masses:

Something like Normal by Trish Doller

If you haven’t already picked up this incredible book, I urge you to do so. It’s so incredibly GREAT! You can check out my review for more about it and my feelings on it.

This book moved me so much and this song I’ve picked for it had the same effect, it moved me. I won’t lie to you, friends…I cried while listening to this song and seeing Travis, the main character in Something Like Normal, in the lyrics.

The words are so, so fitting. If you’ve read it, I’d love to hear if you agree! :)

And after the storm,
I run and run as the rains come
And I look up, I look up,
on my knees and out of luck,
I look up.

Night has always pushed up day
You must know life to see decay
But I won’t rot, I won’t rot
Not this mind and not this heart,
I won’t rot.

And I took you by the hand
And we stood tall,
And remembered our own land,
What we lived for.

There will come a time, you’ll see, with no more tears.
And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your fears.
Get over your hill and see what you find there,
With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair.

And now I cling to what I knew
I saw exactly what was true
But oh no more.
That’s why I hold,
That’s why I hold with all I have.
That’s why I hold.

And I will die alone and be left there.
Well I guess I’ll just go home,
Oh God knows where.
Because death is just so full and man so small.
Well I’m scared of what’s behind and what’s before.

There will come a time, you’ll see, with no more tears.
And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your fears.
Get over your hill and see what you find there,
With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair.

And there will come a time, you’ll see, with no more tears.
And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your fears.
Get over your hill and see what you find there,
With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair.

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Outlander Read Along: Chapters 8–14 Answers

25th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Read-along

outlanderbutton_thumb1

Week two has come to a close! I love everyone’s enthusiasm about the end of chapter 14, to the point where you went ahead and read the next chapter. LOL, that was AWESOME! And kudos to those of you who resisted *cough*Heidi*cough* :) I’ve loved hearing everyone’s thoughts on twitter (continue to use hashtag #OutlanderRA so we can all see!). Here are my answers to Carrie’s great questions for this week!!

 

 

1.  Claire has been given the task of healer at the castle. She must adapt her nursing skills for the time and learn what herbs and etc will cure each particular ailment that is presented to her. Do you have any home remedies that were passed down to you (cure for a cold, bee sting or what have you)?

I’m sad to report that I use no home remedies for anything. I am a slave to modern medicine, I’m afraid. Sad, I know.

EDIT: I just remembered….my dad told me to take a shot of tequila when I have a sore throat. O.0 I don’t use this method, lol.

2. What do you think would be the biggest challenge of living in the past? (Clothing, hygiene, food, etiquette or etc.)

OMG! Definitely plumbing. I need a toilet! And a shower! I could live with not bathing for a couple of days, but when it came time to, I’d want a shower, dammit!

3. Do you have a favorite character, scene or quote so far? If so, share it with us.

I actually love all of chapter 14. I especially love how much care Jamie takes in making this as special for Claire even though he knows she doesn’t want to go through with it. I fell completely in love with him in this chapter.

4. What did you think about the addition of the blood bond in the wedding ceremony? Is this something you would do with the one you love?

I loved that! And I would not be hesitant to try this at my own wedding…though the cutting of my wrist completely terrifies me, lol. I’m a weenie. Maybe I’d just say the vows that go along with it, because they were lovely.

5. Are you reading along closely with the scheduled chapters or are you ahead or behind?

I am following the schedule!! But this is a reread for me, so I am able to restrain myself. Had this been my first time reading it, I’m sure I would have finished the whole book by now, haha.


Now go on over to Tangled Up in Blue to get the questions for chapters 15-21 and to link up this week’s answers!!

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Review: Big Sky Country by Linda Lael Miller + Guest Post

21st Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Guest Posts, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: Big Sky Country by Linda Lael Miller + Guest PostBig Sky Country by Linda Lael Miller
Series: Parable Montana #1
Published by HQN
Pub Date: May 29th 2012
Pages: 384
Format: Paperback | Source: Publisher
Genres: Adult, Romance, Western
Buy the book! | Goodreads
3 Stars

The "First Lady of the West," #1 New York Times bestselling author Linda Lael Miller is back with a new series about Parable, Montana-where love awaits.

The illegitimate son of a wealthy rancher, Sheriff Slade Barlow grew up in a trailer hitched to the Curly-Burly hair salon his mother runs. He was never acknowledged by his father-until now. Suddenly, Slade has inherited half of Whisper Creek Ranch, one of the most prosperous in Parable, Montana. That doesn't sit well with his half brother, Hutch, who grew up with all the rights of a Carmody.Including the affections of Joslyn Kirk, homecoming queen, rodeo queen, beauty queen-whom Slade has never forgotten.

But Joslyn is barely holding her head up these days as she works to pay back everyone her crooked stepfather cheated. With a town to protect-plus a rebellious teenage stepdaughter-Slade has his hands full. But someone has to convince Joslyn that she's responsible only for her own actions. Such as her effect on this lawman's guarded heart.

Big Sky Country had a very mellow feel, just like our hero, Slade. He had that sexy slow drawl, completely laid back. And he’s a sheriff!! HOT! That quiet confidence can turn any girl on and it worked really well on Joslyn. They really meshed well together. Both easy going and honest. It was clear they had great chemistry together, which is why I really wished they would have gotten together sooner! While I did enjoy their rapport, some more sexy times would have been appreciated. :D

I really loved the animosity between Slade and his brother, Hutch. Mostly because I was really looking forward to them showing some brotherly love for each other. Or at least something close to it. Family drama is always interesting to read about, especially between brothers, for some reason. I also really enjoyed Slade’s relationship with his stepdaughter. I found it completely heartwarming.

This was my first “Western” romance and I think I need to get some more now because I really enjoyed Big Sky Country! This was also my first Linda Leal Miller book, and I may have to check out the rest of her books now.

Guest Post

How do you continue to find inspiration after writing so many novels?

That’s a very good question. The answer, I suppose, is that I’m always and forever reading and shamelessly eavesdropping on other people’s conversations. Everything is grist for my mill, so to speak. I might read about a situation and think, “what if–?” and then I’m off and running. My Clare and Tony mysteries, commonly called the Look Books, are a good example—I used to see this guy on TV all the time, when I lived down in Arizona, a lawyer advertising for business. His hair was slicked back and his suit was fancy and I remember thinking he was the ultimate ambulance-chaser, with a clear message: no matter what awful thing you’ve done, we can get you off. I knew that attitude was bound to really tick off, say, a homicide detective, who would have a vested interested in seeing the culprit sent to prison. Voila! Clare Westbrook was my defense attorney heroine, and she was involved with Tony Sonterra, a homicide detective, of course. I’ve been writing for a long time, and I use many techniques to prime the pump—mixed media art is my hobby, and I find that I get some of my best ideas when I’m snipping, gluing, painting, etc. I keep an art journal and make artist trading cards. Trips are always good, too—a change of scene and environment is very stimulating. I need a lot of visual stimulation, I find. I spent a lot of time just looking at things, and imagining things that could happen. I spent a lot of time in Europe, years ago, and oddly enough that was what clued me in that I needed to focus on westerns, since that’s basically my life. You know the old saw, write about what you know.

Giveaway

Giveaway Closed.

 

About Linda Lael Miller

As the daughter of a town marshal, Linda has come home to the western lifestyle that gave birth to one of today’s most successful authors. She left Washington years ago and pursued her wanderlust, living in Arizona and London and traveling the world. Now the author of more than 100 novels, the “First Lady of the West” is glad to be back home, writing contemporary and historical stories that have earned her awards and placements on all the national bestsellers lists.

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Review: What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell

20th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy BlundellWhat I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell
Narrator: Caitlin Greer
Published by Scholastic
Pub Date: November 1st 2008
Length: 6 hrs and 25 mins
Format: Audiobook | Source: Purchased
Genres: Historical, Young Adult
Buy the book! | Goodreads
3 Stars

Murder and intrigue surround a girl in this mystery set in American in the aftermath of WWII.

When Evie's father returned home from World War II, the family fell back into its normal life pretty quickly. But Joe Spooner brought more back with him than just good war stories. When movie-star handsome Peter Coleridge, a young ex-GI who served in Joe's company in postwar Austria, shows up, Evie is suddenly caught in a complicated web of lies that she only slowly recognizes. She finds herself falling for Peter, ignoring the secrets that surround him . . . until a tragedy occurs that shatters her family and breaks her life in two.

This book. THIS DAMN BOOK!! Wow.

I don’t think there’s another story that’s ever made me felt this way. My stomach was in knots the whole. time. I finished this book and felt no closure. Even though it was given, I could not ingest it.

By the middle of this book, I had a bad feeling about everyone except Evie. Well actually, I was kind of frustrated with Evie because she was so blind. All of the secondary characters are up to no good in this book. Not one. I was left in a rage when the lies and the suspicions started unraveling.

Then there’s Evie, who is left in an impossible position. I felt rage for her as well. Also rage for the person who would never find justice because we’d never really know the truth of what happened to him.

In the end, no one would live happily ever after, but Evie would learn from it and try to make sure that her life would never be that twisted again.

Now I’ll tell you what I really loved. What really saved this book for me was that it was the audiobook. The narrator, Caitlin Greer, is just phenomenal. (Sidenote: She also narrates Becca Fitzpatrick’s Hush, Hush series and does an incredible job.) I loved her narration for that 1940s, post-WWII era. It was just perfect! And it made me feel like I was in that time period. Also, the imagery was really to die for if you’re a fan of this time period. All I could picture was 1950s Miami, and Havana nights, even though this story takes place in 1940s Palm Beach. It just had that feel. It was really engrossing.

I say approach this book with caution. It does not have a happy ending, because really, who could be happy in this situation, but it will inspire strong emotions from you. Trust me.

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Top Ten Tuesday: Books On My Summer TBR List

19th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Books On My Summer TBR List

sucharush 1. Such a Rush by Jennifer Echols – I had been salivating over this book since it was unveiled and I actually just finished this book last night!! I had no idea I’d get to read it early. (Thank you, Ginger (Greads!), for lending it to me. :)) Let me tell you…YOU WANT THIS BOOK!! Sexy tension/times ABOUND! :D

2. The Golden Lily (Bloodlines #2) by Richelle Mead – So now that I finally have this book in my hands, I get to finally read it!! AND AND AND!! I get to meet Richelle Mead tonight at a signing!! Eeeeep!! :D

3. This is Not a Test by Courtney Summers – Now that it is finally available, I get to finally read it!! YAY!!!

dangerousboy 4. Enshadowed (Nevermore #2) by Kelly Creagh – After waiting about two years for this book (maybe a year and a half), it will finally be in my hands come August. I can’t wait!!

5. Rift (Nightshade Prequel #1) by Andrea Cremer – I loved Andrea’s Nightshade trilogy and her world building is so interesting that a prequel makes perfect sense. I cannot wait to get my hands on this book.

6. Once Burned (Night Prince #1) by Jeaniene Frost – I LOVE me some Vlad! And his own series is exactly what he needed!! Really looking forward to reading it!

7. At Last (Lucky Harbor #5) by Jill Shalvis – This is a great contemporary romance series by Jill and I cannot wait to read more of them. :)illbethere

8. Summer Nights (Fool’s Gold #8) by Susan Mallery – Everybody and their mom’s know I love me some Fool’s Gold books! So you are probably not surprised to see this here. :) I love it!

9. Dangerous Boy by Mandy Hubbard – This just sounds SO GOOD!!! And right up my alley! “A modern-day retelling of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde with a chilling twist.” Sign me up!!

10. I’ll Be There by Holly Goldberg Sloan – So many people have read and loved this book! It’s been in my TBR pile for quite some months now and this summer will be when I read it. :)

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Outlander Read Along: Chapters 1–7 Answers

18th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Read-along

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Week one is done!! And it has started out so great! I’ve loved hearing everyone’s thoughts on twitter (use hashtag #OutlanderRA so we can all see!).

So here are my answers!!

1. Outlander is a well-known book. Before you cracked it open, what were your expectations or assumptions about this story? Or did you jump into it with a blank slate?

Even though this is a reread for me, I remember when I first read it, I had NO clue what to expect! I kind of just bought it on a whim, without any expectations and when I finally sat down to read it, it was sort of with a blank slate. I think I did expect it to be more of a romance book than it actually is. I didn’t expect it to be so historical, but I ended up really enjoying that aspect of it.

2. Claire’s husband, Frank, is fascinated with learning more and more facts about his family tree, which extends back pretty far. Do you or anyone in your family keep a family tree? How many years/generations back does it go? If not, have you ever considered or attempted to create one?

I don’t think anyone in my family is keeping one and if they are, they haven’t told me about it, lol. I actually tried to create one of ancestry.com but could only get so far on the free version, which I think was maybe up to my grandparents. Womp womp. lol I may try again, but I don’t know. It’s a little difficult for me since my family comes from Mexico, so there really isn’t many records here in the US that would help me.

3. How did you find Claire’s initial conclusion as to her surroundings after waking up from going through the stones? Did you think that was a reasonable conclusion?

I thought it was the most reasonable conclusion she could come aside from her thinking she was dreaming. I think I probably would have come to the same conclusion, actually.

4. How about her composed, rational way of dealing with the fact she’s traveled back in time. Did you find it believable? Do you think you would have acted the same way?

For Claire, I thought it made sense. She’s very analytical and has been trained in combat, so she is used to thinking on her feet and making quick decisions. I think her one break down, in private with Jamie, was enough and believable. I probably would have been crying the whole time and gotten thrown into some dungeon for the crazies. lol

5. At this point in the story, what are your feelings or expectations on Claire and Jamie? Is Frank still a factor for you?

In all honesty, Frank was still in the back of my mind, but that didn’t stop me from wanting Claire and Jamie to get together, right off the bat! I was just SO intrigued by this young Scottish lad! But I remember thinking that Claire didn’t seem all that interested in him…or that maybe she was not letting herself acknowledge her attraction to Jamie because of Frank. But I really wanted her to. :) I know, BAD JESS! :D I don’t care!

Bonus Question: Frank encounters a man outside of the inn where he and Claire are staying. He is afraid it might have been a ghost. What do you believe it was? Do you have any predictions or suspicions on what that was about?

Right when it happened, I didn’t think much about it….but once we meet Jamie, I was like “Wait, was he….?” So I don’t know, even now. But I suspect it is. <—Most nonsensical answer ever. Haha!


Now go on over to Stalking the Bookshelves to get the questions for chapters 8-14!!

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Review: The Hunter and The Hunted by Kelley Armstrong

16th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: The Hunter and The Hunted by Kelley ArmstrongThe Hunter and The Hunted by Kelley Armstrong
Series: Otherworld #10.6
Published by Dutton Adult
Pub Date: June 12th 2012
Pages: 119
Format: eBook | Source: Publisher
Genres: Adult, Paranormal
Buy the book! | Goodreads
4 Stars

In Off-Duty Angel, dark witch and half-demon Eve Levine is desperate for a little entertainment while her lover, Kristof Nast, is detained in afterlife court—enough to volunteer an extra week’s worth of angel corps duty just to pass the time. Luckily something even better comes up: a real celestial bounty-hunter mission to trail a shaman, someone who might prove to be a useful lead in Kristof’s court case. Following the target goes smoothly, until he leads Eve to the British Museum, where she inadvertently steps into a secret dimensional passage and stumbles upon a far more enticing puzzle . . . and a much greater danger.

This collection also includes Stalked (Otherworld #7.3), previously printed in My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon.

It’s not a good sign when Elena Michaels and Clayton Danvers resort to everyday activities on their long-awaited honeymoon in St. Louis. But their encroaching boredom is about to take a backseat to an unexpected threat that catches Clay’s attention. A non-pack werewolf is clearly stalking them—out to claim Elena for himself—and Clay has no intention of letting the upstart mutt spoil their romantic getaway, even if that means deceiving Elena as he pursues the rival werewolf on his own.

Includes an exclusive early look at the first seven chapters of Thirteen, the Otherworld series finale coming July 24, 2012.

If you’re a fan of this fantastic series, or if you’re new to this world, you will for sure enjoy this eSpecial with two novellas. Kelley Armstrong never disappoints!

In Stalked, we see Clay Danvers doing what he does best: kicking ass and taking names. And  as always, being extremely sexy and prickly. It was so much fun seeing him trying to give Elena the most perfect honeymoon because he’s normally not like that. But he loves her more than anything and would give her the world if she asked for it. The problem is that there’s a mutt trying to cause them some problems, trying to ruin their honeymoon. So now Clay has to expertly get rid of him without Elena finding out. It’s a totally fun story that you do not want to pass up.

Off-Duty Angel stars are kick-ass Eve Levine. In this story, we get to see her awesome skills on gathering information. Even though this discovery might blow stuff out of the water. This story ties in directly with the previous book, Spell Bound, and with the upcoming and final book in the series, Thirteen, so I don’t want to give too much away. Just know that it is worth it.

And now I am SO ready for Thirteen! It’s going to be bittersweet…

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Most Valuable Book | Fave Dad Characters

15th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Follow Friday, TGIF

Most Valuable Book | Fave Dad Characters

TGIF!

This week’s TGIF! question: Most Valuable Book: From your personal collection of books, which ones hold the most value to you – is it signed by the author? or maybe it’s your favorite story of all time? Share it with us.

Easy! It’s my Outlander series, which are all in hardbacks. The only thing they’re missing is Diana Gabaldon’s autograph. Not only are they all over $20 each, it is all my favorite series. And I actually haven’t even cracked them open. I have the Kindle editions of each and read those instead. Yeah..I baby them, lol.

gwtw-separate-line

Follow Friday

This week’s Follow Friday question: Happy Father’s Day! Who is your favorite dad character in a book and why?

I have to go with Lola’s dads in Lola and the Boy Next Door.  They were just outstanding characters that really stood out.

Also, Charlie from Twilight. He was pretty dang cool. :)

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Review: Silence by Becca Fitzpatrick

14th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: Silence by Becca FitzpatrickSilence by Becca Fitzpatrick
Narrator: Caitlin Greer
Series: Hush Hush #3
Published by Simon & Schuster
Pub Date: October 4th 2011
Pages: 448
Length: 9 hrs and 39 mins
Format: Audiobook | Source: Purchased
Genres: Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult
Buy the book! | Goodreads
4 Stars

WHEN SILENCE IS ALL THAT'S LEFT, CAN THE TRUTH FINALLY BE HEARD?

Nora Grey can't remember the past five months of her life. After the initial shock of waking up in a cemetery and being told that she has been missing for weeks - with no one knowing where she was or who she was with - she tried to get her life back on track. Go to school, hang out with her best friend, Vee, and dodge mom's creepy new boyfriend.

But there is this voice in the back of her head, an idea that she can almost reach out and touch. Visions of angel wings and unearthly creatures that have nothing to do with the life she knows.

And this unshakable feeling that a part of her is missing.

Then Nora crosses paths with a sexy stranger, whom she feels a mesmerizing connection to. He seems to hold all the answers...and her heart. Every minute she spends with him grows more and more intense until she realizes she could be falling in love. Again.

I went into this book with a lot of apprehension. While I really liked Hush, Hush, Crescendo left me all kinds of pissed off. Silence really surprised me and I ended up really enjoying it.

I think mainly what was different was Nora and Patch’s relationship in this book. There is still that tension we love between them, but there’s isn’t the constant pushing away from Patch and whining about it from Nora. They actually let themselves enjoy one another and spend a few steamy scenes together in the second half of the book. Though I must say, more Patch wouldn’t have hurt anyone. Just saying.

Another thing I enjoyed was that we have some answers in this book and that Nora is actually in the know. I don’t know if it was the memory loss, but Nora acted a lot more brave and mature in this book. I was so happy to not have to see so much Marcie in this book because I totally despise her. Vee was also not around much and I didn’t find myself really missing her. Sorry, babe. I actually enjoyed Scott Parnell a lot in this book. He was cute and playful and flirty, but no worries, no love triangle surfaced from any of that.

I actually listened to the audiobook version instead of reading it because I really enjoy Caitlin Greer’s, the narrator, work with this series. If you are looking for a good series on audio, this is one you might want to check out.

I am really looking forward to what Becca Fitzpatrick has in store for us in Finale, the last book in this series. Hopefully Patch and Nora will finally get their happy ending. :)

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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Review: Something Like Normal by Trish Doller

13th Jun 2012 Jess @ Gone with the Words 2012, Reviews, Reviews by Jess

Review: Something Like Normal by Trish DollerSomething Like Normal by Trish Doller
Published by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Pub Date: June 19th 2012
Pages: 224
Format: eARC | Source: NetGalley
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
Buy the book! | Goodreads
5 Stars

When Travis returns home from a stint in Afghanistan, his parents are splitting up, his brother’s stolen his girlfriend and his car, and he’s haunted by nightmares of his best friend’s death. It’s not until Travis runs into Harper, a girl he’s had a rocky relationship with since middle school, that life actually starts looking up. And as he and Harper see more of each other, he begins to pick his way through the minefield of family problems and post-traumatic stress to the possibility of a life that might resemble normal again. Travis’s dry sense of humor, and incredible sense of honor, make him an irresistible and eminently lovable hero.

What has stuck with me most about Something Like Normal has been how real these characters and story are. They feel like a part of me. Like I know Travis, or like I am Harper. And I think what it is is the fact that we probably all know someone like Travis. In most every generation there have been people from our lives who have fought in some war. It feels real because it is so real and relevant to today. It will strike a chord with anyone.

Travis is a character that instantly found his way to my heart. I wanted to reach into the pages and hug him, make him feel all better. Even though there were times I wanted to shake him and tell him he was being an idiot, most of the time I wanted to just hug him. It was so heart-wrenching reliving his experience in Afghanistan with him. I think Trish Doller did an incredible job of making us feel like we are in the middle of that war with Travis.

I loved how Harper kept Travis on his toes. She sure gave him a run for his money and I totally loved that! I felt really bad for what she went through in school too. Because of Travis, no less! I felt very vulnerable while she opened up to him and let him in. Like he was going to hurt her again and in turn it would break my heart. Mostly because I loved Travis and didn’t want him to mess things up with Harper.

There was also something about the writing that felt so different and genuine. It felt more real than a lot of contemporaries I’ve read. Travis’s voice was so true and I completely believed myself in the head of this 19 year old guy.

To say I loved this book would be an understatement. It moved me. It touch my heart so completely. It’s something like perfect, actually. You do not want to pass this book up. I cannot wait to read this book again soon and I cannot wait to see what else Trish Doller will have in store for us in any future books.

 

Jess @ Gone with the Words

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