Current Events:

I have been doing some thinking and I've come to the conclusion that I need to take a temporary break from book blogging. NOTE: Any tour stops that I've committed to will be honored. I have decided that I want to combine my love of books, blogging, knitting, movies digital photography and life in general into 1 blog so that I don't feel so overwhelmed. Right now I feel like my book blogging is a job, I already have one of those. My plan is to come back in the near future with a new blog and a new plan.

My Weight Loss Progress

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Where I Belong by Gwendolyn Heasley

Title:  Where I Belong
Author: Gwendolyn Heasley


Meet Corrinne. She's living every girl's dream in New York City—shopping sprees at Barneys, open access to the best clubs and parties, and her own horse at the country club. Her perfect life is perfectly on track. At least it was. . . .

When Corrinne's father is laid off, her world suddenly falls apart. Instead of heading to boarding school, she's stripped of her credit cards and shipped off to the boonies of Texas to live with her grandparents. On her own in a big public school and forced to take a job shoveling manure, Corrinne is determined to get back to the life she's supposed to be living. She doesn't care who she stomps on in the process. But when Corrinne makes an unlikely friend and discovers a total hottie at work, she begins to wonder if her life B.R.—before the recession—was as perfect as it seemed.


I got this one out of my local library.  When I started reading it I had a hard time putting it down once I got started.  I thought it was that good.  Though I did find a couple things that I didn't care for...Not many though.

In the beginning of the book I thought that Corrinne was pretty much a wanna be "Paris Hilton" (you have no idea how much Paris Hilton annoys me.).  I didn't really care for her very much at all. Then her dad gets laid off from his job.  And life gets really REAL for Corrinne.

I thought after she and her little brother arrived in Texas, that as much conflict as there was when they first arrived between Corrinne and her grandmother, that she became pretty "normal".  She wasn't doing the things that she was able to do in her old life.  If she wanted to survive she had to eat her grandma's fatty food, which meant she had to stop counting calories and watching her carbs.  She actually had to work, GASP SHOCK!  She actually had to go to PUBLIC SCHOOL, GASP SHOCK!  It turns out her first friend at public school is a cheerleader!

The farther I got into the book the more like able Corrinne became.  She started putting others before herself.  She did have a slight "relapse" when she met a rocker and thought they should be together, though it didn't take her long to see through him.  Then there was the "normal" guy who saw right through her from the start and by the end of the book there is potential there for a relationship.

Besides the Corrinne from the beginning of the book, I didn't really like the scene where Corrinne's friend from her B.R. life comes to visit.  Here Corrinne is turning her life around and making due and here comes her friend purposely trying to make things difficult for her.

I hope that there is another book.  The end of this one was to me anyway, a cliff hanger.



Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Empire of the Summer Moon by S.C. Gwynne Mini Review

Title:  Empire of the Summer Moon
Author:  S.C. Gwynne


In the tradition of Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, a stunningly vivid historical account of the forty-year battle between Comanche Indians and white settlers for control of the American West, centering on Quanah, the greatest Comanche chief of them all.S. C. Gwynne’s Empire of the Summer Moon spans two astonishing stories. The first traces the rise and fall of the Comanches, the most powerful Indian tribe in American history. The second entails one of the most remarkable narratives ever to come out of the Old West: the epic saga of the pioneer woman Cynthia Ann Parker and her mixed-blood son Quanah, who became the last and greatest chief of the Comanches. Although readers may be more familiar with the tribal names Apache and Sioux, it was in fact the legendary fighting ability of the Comanches that determined just how and when the American West opened up. Comanche boys became adept bareback riders by age six; full Comanche braves were considered the best horsemen who ever rode. They were so masterful at war and so skillful with their arrows and lances that they stopped the northern drive of colonial Spain from Mexico and halted the French expansion westward from Louisiana. White settlers arriving in Texas from the eastern United States were surprised to find the frontier being rolled backward by Comanches incensed by the invasion of their tribal lands. So effective were the Comanches that they forced the creation of the Texas Rangers and account for the advent of the new weapon specifically designed to fight them: the six-gun. The war with the Comanches lasted four decades, in effect holding up the development of the new American nation. Gwynne’s exhilarating account delivers a sweeping narrative that encompasses Spanish colonialism, the Civil War, the destruction of the buffalo herds, and the arrival of the railroads—a historical feast for anyone interested in how the United States came into being. Against this backdrop Gwynne presents the compelling drama of Cynthia Ann Parker, a lovely nine-year-old girl with cornflower-blue eyes who was kidnapped by Comanches from the far Texas frontier in 1836. She grew to love her captors and became infamous as the "White Squaw" who refused to return until her tragic capture by Texas Rangers in 1860. More famous still was her son Quanah, a warrior who was never defeated and whose guerrilla wars in the Texas Panhandle made him a legend. S. C. Gwynne’s account of these events is meticulously researched, intellectually provocative, and, above all, thrillingly told. Empire of the Summer Moon announces him as a major new writer of American history.


I saw this book on Barnes and Noble when it first came out and I've always had a fascination with Quanah Parker and Native American's in general really.  So I immediately downloaded it onto my Nook and started reading it.  I actually had to start over because life got in the way and I really wanted to review it on my blog so I wanted the information to be fresh in my mind.

What I really liked about this book was that it wasn't entirely about Quanah Parker, yes the vast majority of it was, but there was a lot of history about the Comanche nation in the book too. I saw this book as "Rise and Fall" type of book. There is also a pretty detailed description of the raid on Parker's fort.  A little bit graphic but I'm sure very accurate for the times.

I enjoyed how the author depicted both sides of the Indian wars.  At times a little graphic but historically accurate.

I thought that the depiction of Quanah Parker pre-reservation life and reservation life was pretty neat.  It turns out that Quanah wasn't just a "dumb" Indian.  He was an advocate for his people as well as an entrepreneur.

The only quirk that I really had with the book was the sometimes graphic nature of some of the content.  Yes, it's historically accurate but it became, at times, a slight turn off for the book.



Monday, March 28, 2011

What I'm Reading!

Hosted by Sheila of Bookjourney.

This is the place to post what you've read, what your currently reading and what you plan to read in the next week.  So here we go:

What I've read:

Where I Belong by Gwendolyn Heasly (Review Scheduled for 3/30/11)
Empire of the Summer Moon by S.C. Gwynne (Review Scheduled for 3/29/11)
Unearthly by Cynthia Hand (Review Coming Soon)
Hush Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick (Review Coming Soon)
Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick (Review Coming Soon)

What I'm Currently Reading:

 The Iron Witch by Karen Mahoney
I Beat The Odds: From Homelessness to The Blind Side and Beyond by Michael Oher

What I'm planning to read:

I have a CRAP TON of library books that I've gotten in over the past couple of weeks (Check out my IMM from yesterday to see what I got).  I haven't decided which one's I'm going to read next but I'm bound to find something in that massive pile!

What's going on on the blog:

Guest Post and Giveaway by Tracy Cooper-Posey...I read and reviewed her new book Blood Knot.

No Mercy and Mercy Kill by Lori Armstrong Giveaway...To be eligible to win you must comment on the reviews.

Guest Post and Giveaway by Tracy Cooper-Posey

I want to thank Tracy Cooper-Posey for joining us today on Jamie's Bookshelf.  I just got done reading and reviewing her new book Blood Knot and I thought it was really good.  You should really check it out!

Now I'm going to turn it over to Tracy and she's gonna tell us a little bit about secret love.  PLUS there is an excerpt from Blood Knot at the end for you check out.  Also, Tracy is giving away an e-book copy of her book titled Kiss Across Swords (More details after the guest post.)

Take it away Tracy!

Secret Love...Is It Really Possible?

Unrequited love.  Yearning for a secret love is an old and beloved theme in romance novels.  Sometimes it’s tied up with The Big Misunderstanding plot device, where the two main characters are at odds with each other because of miscommunications.  Sometimes it’s simply someone who loves without expectation...occassionally for years. 

Victorian novels used to feature unrequited and impossible loves regularly.  One such love I recall from a classic novel is Vanity Fair.  William Dobbin went for eighteen years trailing after Amelia, hopelessly in love with her, before she finally woke up to the fact and married him.

Modern romance novels don’t torture their character nearly that long.

It takes a lot of work to make a secret love sound convincing in a modern novel.  I wrote not one but two of them into Blood Knot, and now I know why authors don’t do them a lot.  They’re bloody difficult to pull off and make ‘em sound real.

In this day and age, when speaking up for yourself, being assertive and pro-active is the fabric of life, secretly loving someone and doing nothing about it is almost flat-out impossible.  But just for a moment, let’s suppose that the unlikely was possible.  Let's agree that there exists some rare circumstances where you could find yourself in love with someone and chose not to do anything about it (that don't make you a spineless wimp...but I digress).  And for the sake of this discussion I am not including any situation where the object of love is married or in a relationship.  Love triangles are a different matter altogether.  Here’s where secret love starts to fall apart in modern terms:  How do you keep it secret? 

If you’re truly, really in love with that person in the romantic sense, how do you stop yourself from going to pieces around them every time they step into the room?  How do you stop yourself from showing how much you love them with every expression, every look, everything you do?  A person in love almost glows with it.  If the person you love doesn’t notice, then everyone around you is certainly going to see the change in your behaviour and there you go, the secret is out.  These days, the secret is going to last a nano-second before someone tells the person you love.  There are no barriers to people getting together these days.  No Victorian sense of impropriety.  No one is going to say “well done you,” (or better yet "how honourable!") for holding yourself apart.  They’re going to think you’re flippin’ crazy and shove you into your love’s arms.

So there goes the secret and your unrequited ambitions.

But...suppose for a moment longer that somehow or another you’re the world’s best actor and manage to fool everyone that you’re cool, nothing has changed, and the person you love desparately doesn’t discharge your pulse every time they walk by.  Now you’re managing to hang onto your secret love.  Go, you. 

But for how long? 

How long could someone possibly hold onto such an explosive package of emotions like love, and not have a coronary or embolism or total nervous breakdown?  How long can you walk around bottling up true romantic love for another person, day after day, before it fundamentally changes your personality in some way, simply because you're holding all that high emotional content like a pressure cooker inside you?

And if by some miracle you a) hide all that and b) keep it held tight and secure over the long term without ill-effect, the next hurdle you face is:  How do you keep your love alive?

I know, I know...Dobbin loved Amelia for eighteen friggin' years before she got a clue.  But that was fiction.

When you first fall in love with another person, the intensity of the emotions, both physical and mental, can be off the charts.  How long can a real person hold onto all that intense, deep feeling, if it isn't returned in any way at all?  If you see the person you secretly love every day, for example, and they're blind to your true feelings, how can you continue to love them so intensely and not have your feelings of love change when they blythely carry on with their lives day in and day out without so much as a gentle word in your direction?

Something's gotta give.  Your love must change in nature.  It has to.  If you don't receive anything back, you would not be able to love at that level of intensity in a continuous vacuum.  You might love them with less intensity, or less need, or your love may mutate to a more familial kind of love that doesn't need acknowledgement or mutual romantic love in return.

Which makes the sort of long term secret love story lines in romance novels that we all adore even more unrealistic that ever before.  Dammit.

That's why I had such a hard time with Blood Knot.  I really shot myself in the foot.  I had to sit down and think long and hard about the why's and wherefore's and how relationships and personalities would change if two of the main characters secretly loved someone.  Plus, I wanted to set it up so that there would be damn good reasons for those people to be keeping their mouths shut in the first place, and still have a backbone at the end of the book. 

By the time I figured all that out, I had a hell of a complex love story on my hands, and the rest of the book had to fit itself in around the mess.  And that's actually where I first started to get the idea for the name of the book:  Blood Knot hints at the very tangled mess these people—Winter, Sebastian and Nial—made for themselves.


After thirty-five novels with various publishers, under various pen names, and after nearly ten years with Ellora’s Cave primarily writing in romantic suspense and paranormal romance, I have finally taken a deep breath and self-published Blood Knot, an erotic urban fantasy romance (MMF, Contemporary, Vampires, Paranormal), and my 36th novel overall.  It was released on March 9, 2011 and is available at Amazon and Smashwords for $2.99 in all the common e-book formats, and will soon be available in print.

I've won a number of awards, including Australia's Emma Darcy Award (the equivalent of the Golden Heart) and was most recently nominated for the CAPA's Best Erotic Paranormal and Favourite Author categories.  You can find out more about me and my books here.


Winter, a professional thief who can manipulate others’ biologies by touch, accidentally “healed” her former partner—and former vampire—Sebastian, whom she secretly loves. Her healing created a symbiotic pairing between them that neither of them wants. 

Nathanial, a sexy thousand-year-old vampire and Sebastian’s ex-lover, talks Sebastian and Winter into stealing evidence that will expose all vampires to the world. But Nathanial is a puppet-master who doesn’t believe in falling in love with humans, leaving Winter unsure of his real feelings for her once he seduces her, or how he feels about Sebastian, the former vampire-now-human whose life he has turned upside down once more. 

But the evidence they steal is hot property.  The future of all vampires is on the line and others will stop at nothing to get it, leaving Sebastian, Winter and Nathanial with no allies but each other.  They must trust each other to survive.  Only...can they?

An Excerpt From: BLOOD KNOT
Copyright © TRACY COOPER-POSEY, 2011
All Rights Reserved.

[For readers who are following my blog tour, these excerpts are consecutive -- each excerpt follows the last one.  Check on my blog for details of previous excerpts, and subscribe to my blog to learn about future blog tour posts and the excerpts that go with them.]

Eleven months later, dozens of recalls later, Winter still could not put together in her mind a visual sequence of what Sebastian did next. Only logic supplied her with what he must have actually done.
He must have seen the guard she had failed to put to sleep stir behind her and reach for the broken off broomstick. The guard picked up the jagged, pointed end and reared up behind Winter, who was stupidly facing Sebastian. The guard aimed the sharp end of the broomstick at her back.
Sebastian grabbed Winter’s shoulders and spun her out of the way, using a strength and speed she had never seen before. He moved so fast, in fact, that she couldn’t follow the movement with her naked eye.
He pulled her around, out of the way of the up-thrusting spike of the broomstick, which put him in front of it.
The sharp, broken-off end punched through his ribs and into the right ventricle of his heart. Sebastian gasped, his eyes widening.
The point of the stake pushed up against the front of his ribcage and Winter could feel the grinding of the point against his bones.
Through his grip on her shoulders Winter measured instant shock circle through him. Shock…and something else. For the first time in the nearly two years since Sebastian had strolled into her life she went inside his body.
She ripped her way in without thought, without care. She just wanted to stop the pain.
But there was none. His body was disintegrating like that of someone long dead.
“No!” Terrified, Winter threw herself into holding him together. To fixing it. She poured herself into reversing the damage.
And it hurt. She screamed.
“What are you doing?” Sebastian cried, his grip tightening.
Winter grasped at him, not sure who was holding who up. Like the guard, they both sank slowly to the floor. She couldn’t speak. Her focus, both mental and visual, was on the black, nameless processes inside him and bringing his body back to normal.
Her vision was clouded over, so she felt her way around Sebastian’s body to where the stake protruded, gripped it and drew it out slowly, repairing tissues and organs as it withdrew.
“Winter…” he breathed. “What are you?”
“Shhh…” There was such deadness in his body. Such damage. It wasn’t just the stake. She fixed the damage the stake had caused, then encompassed the rest. It was like trying to hug a black cloud. It eluded her at first. There was nothing to grip. Then she simply stepped inside it and…inhaled.
The agony tore through her like burning. She thought she screamed.
“Winter, what are you doing?” Sebastian was shaking her.
“Healing you…” she whispered. Or perhaps she just mouthed the words.
She inhaled and struggled and fought. She would not give up. Not Sebastian.
And then it was done. The cloud was gone. Sebastian’s heart beat normally. His systems were correct, proper, normal. Sweet and clean.
But Winter knew something was very wrong with her. There was no euphoria this time. She blinked, trying to bring her vision together and look at Sebastian.
He was staring at her. So was the guard.
She lay half-way across Sebastian’s chest, her hand on his neck.
“Your eyes,” Sebastian breathed.
“They’re fine now,” she said.
“They changed,” Sebastian told her flatly.
“Bring the guard here. I need to touch him,” she said urgently.
The guard started to scramble to his feet, but Sebastian snatched out his hand, grabbing the guard’s ankle and dragging him back within Winter’s reach. The guard kicked and struggled until Winter circled his ankle with her fingers. She sent him to sleep. It took effort to do it and made her feel sick. But he went limp and began to snore.
“Fuck…” Sebastian breathed.
Winter took a few breaths, then reached into the guard’s brain and wiped his recent memories. It took the last of her dwindling reserved.
Black sickness swamped her, making her giddy. She tried to quell the nausea, but it wouldn’t go away. “Something’s wrong,” she muttered.
“No kidding,” Sebastian replied, staring at the peacefully snoring guard.
“I can’t fix myself,” she gasped, clutching at her head. The darkness was looming larger within her, demanding and sucking at her. Pulsing. Blooming.
Sebastian cupped her face. His gaze was steady. “What do you need, Winter? It’s yours. Just name it.” So strong. So dependable.
She bit back the first truthful, harmful words that bubbled to her lips. Instead she settled for the practical. “Get me home, Sebastian.”
Then she surrendered to the blackness.

Chapter Three

NATHANIAL STARED UP through the big basement windows at the noon-day sun, which at Montana latitudes, was low overhead. He had been standing that way for a full ten minutes since she had finished relating how Sebastian and she had completed the Sumitomo job.
Now he turned back to face Winter again. “You didn’t take anything out of the vault,” he said.
Winter blinked. Of all the startling facts she had handed over, Nathanial chose to focus on the booty they had hauled or not hauled out of the bank?
“Why do you care what we took with us?” she asked.
“Verification,” he replied. “I was told the Sumitomo job was a raging success. You just told me another version that doesn’t seem to…match.”
“You don’t trust me. I’m wounded,” she said dryly. “What do you think happened? I did Sebastian in, drained him and now live off what’s left of his blood?”
Nathanial smiled. “Your blood fever was real enough. You wouldn’t limit your blood supply by killing the source. But there is a discrepancy here. You didn’t take anything from the vault.”
“No,” Winter said flatly. “And the contract I took had a confidentiality clause, so let’s drop the subject.”
Nathanial’s eyes narrowed. “You didn’t take anything. You put something in there.” He smiled. “The data centre. That’s why Sebastian went in. He’s the computer expert. Something…a trojan or a phishing module, or even a piece of hardware sitting unobtrusively on a server, sending data to the right people. That’s why the contract specified no one must suspect that a break-in happened. That’s why Slavomir passed up the two million dollar pay off—because he couldn’t figure out a way to do it. But you could, because you simply wiped the guards’ memories.”
“And Sebastian re-looped the security recordings so that nothing showed there, either,” Winter added. She stood up. “I’m hungry. Do you mind if I eat?”
“Not at all. Do you mind if I follow you into your kitchen and keep talking?”
She sighed. “I suppose.”
He laughed. “You will not put me aside with so simple a human habit as eating, Winter. I’ve been watching humans eat for hundreds of years. It doesn’t bother me anymore.”

It's me again!  Again, Thank You Tracy for dropping by today! It's been a ton of fun and now it's time to give the readers the details for the giveaway.  So here we go!

Taylor Yates never dreamed growing up she would end up happily living with two drop-dead sexy vampires and time-hopping through their thousand years of personal history. Her life is complete…or is it?

When she finds herself at the seige of Jerusalem during the first crusade, Veris doesn’t know her at all and doesn’t want to.  Worst of all, he and Brody are total strangers, and Taylor drives a wedge in deep between them by trying to seduce Veris at their first meeting—not something a lady of the day does if she wants to keep her head.

Taylor and Brody must woo Veris using the customs of medieval England, win his heart and his full commitment before Jerusalem falls in four days time—or when they return to their own time, their lives as they know them will be gone…

Tracy is giving away 1 e-copy of her book Kiss Across Swords.  Above is the cover and the blurb...To me it sounds really interesting!

1. Remember this contest is for an e-copy.

2. You MUST fill out the form.

3. Please leave a comment both here on this post as well as the review of Blood Knot.

4. Contest will close April 8th @ 11:59 pm CST.

EROTICA REVIEW ~ Blood Knot by Tracy Cooper-Posey

Title: Blood Knot
Author: Tracy Cooper-Posey


Winter, a professional thief who can manipulate others' biologies by touch, accidentally "healed" her former partner-and former vampire-Sebastian, whom she secretly loves. Her healing created a symbiot pairing between them that neither of them wants.

Nathanial, a sexy thousand-year-old vampire and Sebastian's ex-lover, talks Sebastian and Winter into stealing evidence that will expose all vampires to the world. But Nathanial is a puppet-master who doesn't believe in falling in love with humans, leaving Winter unsure of his real feelings for her once he seduces her, or how he feels about Sebastian, the former vampire-now-human whose life he has turned upside down once more.

But the evidence they steal is hot property. The future of all vampires is on the line and others will stop at nothing to get it, leaving Sebastian, Winter and Nathanial with no allies but each other. They must trust each other to survive. Only...can they?


This was a very interesting read.  I've only read 1 other book where m/m/f love scenes were involved and I can definitely say that this one trumps it big time!  Hot doesn't even begin to cover it!  The premise of the story was really interesting to me because it involved two male vampires and one female who is supposedly human who are best known throughout the vampire world for their skills in stealing.

Nathanial, or Nial, is one smart cookie and not to mention one sexy vamp, who has a way of manipulating others minds to get what he wants.  I saw him as someone who needed to constantly be in control, it showed in his encounters and actions towards Winter and Sebastian.  He always seemed to be in the minds of others, being able to read them and make them react accordingly.

Winter was one tough ass chick that who was labeled a human but isn't really.  See she was born by human parents but she was given a gift that no one else has.  She has the ability to reach into other individuals simply by touching their skin and completely change their biological chemistry or heal them if needed.  That includes herself as well.  There was an instance in the book where she was able to heal herself from being poisoned simply by mentally reaching within herself and breaking down/diluting that strain of poison.  Therefore, reversing it and making her immortal like a vampire.

Sebastian, is yet another smexy vampire (side note: why are the paranormal ALWAYS uber sexy?) who has worked with Winter for two years.  In that time he's also been keeping his true feelings away from Winter.  See Winter has saved his sexy vampire backside numerous times and this last time was ALMOST the time where he actually broke down and told her how he felt...ALMOST.  What kept him from confessing?  TINY SPOILER>>> Thinking she was human. <<<END TINY SPOILER  The last time Winter saved him he was on the brink of death.  That's where she panicked and healed him back to human.

For me, this is where the story got really interesting.  After healing Sebastian, Winter finds that she has inherited some traits that she definitely did not have before...Like requiring blood, more specifically Sebastian's blood.  Also, her eyes and her hair have also changed on a permanent basis.

Sebastian thinks he was turned back into a human being because his biological chemistry has changed.  He's suddenly able to eat food and seems to be craving it.  This is where things get difficult for Sebastian, he's having an extremely difficult time dealing with all the truths revolving around the situation and decides that he's just going to run away from his feelings and trys to forget about Winter all together.  Well, until his ex-lover Nail shows up and persuades Winter into helping him find Sebastian.

This is the point where the heat-ometer goes up several notches. Winter and Nial keep finding themselves in each other's arms with an heightened sense of passion.  Especially AFTER they find Sebastian and the old flames are stoked between old and new lovers.

I decided that I couldn't give this book a 5/5 out of because I thought that there were some area's where a little more clarification would have been helpful.  One area in particular, what kind of immortal exactly was Winter.  It was very clear that she wasn't entirely human but wasn't exactly a vampire either.



Sunday, March 27, 2011

IMM I LOVE my Library edition

Hosted by The Story Siren.

It's been a great couple of weeks thanks to my public library.  You'll have to wait and see what I all got there, good stuff Menard! :)

*Purchased E-Books*

The football star made famous in the hit film The Blind Side reflects on how far he has come from the circumstances of his youth.

Michael Oher is the young man at the center of the true story depicted in The Blind Side movie (and book) that swept up awards and accolades. Though the odds were heavily stacked against him, Michael had a burning desire deep within his soul to break out of the Memphis inner-city ghetto and into a world of opportunity. While many people are now familiar with Oher's amazing journey, this is the first time he shares his account of his story in his own words, revealing his thoughts and feelings with details that only he knows, and offering his point of view on how anyone can achieve a better life.

Looking back on how he went from being a homeless child in Memphis to playing in the NFL, Michael talks about the goals he had for himself in order to break out of the cycle of poverty, addiction, and hopelessness that trapped his family for so long. He recounts poignant stories growing up in the projects and running from child services and foster care over and over again in search of some familiarity. Eventually he grasped onto football as his ticket out of the madness and worked hard to make his dream into a reality. But Oher also knew he would not be successful alone. With his adoptive family, the Touhys, and other influential people in mind, he describes the absolute necessity of seeking out positive role models and good friends who share the same values to achieve one's dreams.

Sharing untold stories of heartache, determination, courage, and love, I Beat the Odds is an incredibly rousing tale of one young man's quest to achieve the American dream.

*Purchased Bound Books*

You can't fight what you can't see. And Gabriel Raines can't be sure just who's setting the fires in his new real-estate development. When two fires hit back-to-back, he knows it's personal, but any number of competitors or ex-employees could be the arsonist.
The police suspect Angel Ramirez, a local teen who's been in trouble before. But Mattie Baker, a volunteer at the Family Abuse center, just can't believe the kid she's been working with would go back to his delinquent ways.

Determined to convince Gabe that she's right, Mattie must get close to him and find out who's putting their neighborhood in jeopardy. And just as the arsonist's flames continue to burn, they find a heat developing between them. It might just turn into a full-fledged fire…if they can survive long enough.

At thirty-two Dev is "mostly retired" from Raines Investigations, content to run operations from his sprawling Arizona home. But Dev has never been able to say no to a beautiful woman, so when Lark Delaney comes to him for help, the former U.S. Army Ranger from Wind Canyon gets back in the game.
Lark is sexy, successful and dedicated to tracking down the baby girl her sister gave up for adoption. It should be a straightforward case, but it's not long before Dev uncovers a shady adoption ring and worse—the child's parents have been murdered and the little girl has been taken.

As the case grows dangerous and Lark needs him more than ever, Dev can't ignore his growing attraction for her. He also can't trust his judgment with women or the emotions he's long-since buried. But there's a chance, if he gets this right and saves Lark's niece, that he'll end up saving himself, too.


In life, Jack Mercy hadn't been a kind man. In death, he was no different. His daughter Willa expected to inherit his ranch, the place she'd put her heart and soul into. But at the reading of the will, she learns that her home has been given not just to her, but to two sisters she barely knows as well. And in order to inherit, they must all live on the ranch for a period of one year.

None of the three sisters are happy with the arrangement. And apparently, neither is someone else as deadly incidents begin occurring around them. Willa, Tess and Lila find themselves fighting for their lives alongside the men who have become part of the lives and their hearts.

In this funny and big-hearted story by the author of The Secret Lives of Fortunate Wives, three best friends make a pact to transform themselves into the glamorous women they've always wanted to be.

Nola Devlin has a secret identity. By day she is an overweight, frumpy, and overlooked editor at Sass! (the "celebrity magazine with an edge!"), but by night she slips behind her keyboard and into her alter-ego: Belinda Apple. Belinda is thin, gorgeous, British and the author of a trendy advice column- she is, in effect, the latest Carrie Bradshaw. Not even Nola's two best friends or her self-absorbed sister (who worships Belinda as the "sister she never had") know her secret.
When "Belinda" jots off a column about how easy it is to lose weight, Nola is shocked when her best friends take her own lies to heart and urge her to follow Belinda's weight loss program. Since Nola can't reveal herself as the real Belinda Apple, she bites the bullet and joins her friends in making the "Cinderella Pact"- a last ditch attempt to lose weight (again!) and transform their lives for good.

But as the pounds come off, things don't turn out the way the three friends expect. Their journey of self-discovery leads to the return of an old love and the unmasking of new problems. Meanwhile, Nola finds herself torn between two different men as she stomps out fires caused by her deception as Belinda Apple and falls in love with the man who just might be her prince - or the rat in coachman's clothing.


The Red Pyramid
How To Knit A Heart Back Home
So Shelly
The Demon Trapper's Daughter

Across The Universe
The Sphinx's Queen

Tell Me A Secret
Amy and Roger's Epic Detour
Take Me There
Tyger Tyger
Dirty Little Secret's

Alex Van Helsing Vampire Rising
A Love Story Starring My Dead Best Friend
You Wish
What did you get in your mailbox this week?

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Little Break

I'm taking a tiny reviewing break.  I've been reading like crazy and have a bunch of reviews to post but I'm suffering from a bad case of reviewers block.  Bad news there.

On the upside I have found that a lot of the books that I have on my wishlist are available in my library system!  I have 19 books checked out now and only 2 of those weren't on my wishlist.  Plus, I have another 14 books that were on my wishlist "in transit" to my library.

If your looking for a way to save some money I definitely suggest investing in a library card.  This wonderful piece of plastic has saved me several times from buying books that I wasn't able to get into much less finish.  Now I am putting together a list of books to purchase from the books that I've checked out of my library! :)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

No Mercy & Mercy Kill by Lori Armstrong Giveaway

I recently read both of these books and posted the reviews for them this morning (No Mercy and Mercy Kill).  These two books are the first books in a LONG time that I have felt were worthy of a 5+/5 rating.  And because I enjoyed them so very much I have decided that I am going to giveaway both books to 1 lucky winner.


1.  To be eligible to win you MUST comment on the reviews.

2. Fill out the form below.

3. Open to anywhere Book Depository ships to.

4. Contest ends April 1 @ 11:59 pm CST.

Fine Print:

The winner will be drawn by and once notified via email will have 48 hours to confirm or a new winner will be drawn.

Mercy Kill by Lori Armstrong

Title: Mercy Kill
Author: Lori Armstrong
Series: Mercy Gunderson Mystery #2
Publication Date: January 11th 2011


Former Black Ops army sniper Mercy Gunderson isn’t adjusting well to the laid-back rhythm of civilian life on her family’s ranch in South Dakota. To fill her time, Mercy accepts a temporary bartending gig at a local watering hole. Yet her attempts to settle in back home are tested when Titan Oil, a Canadian company proposing to run an underground pipeline through Eagle River County, sends Jason Hawley, Mercy’s former army buddy, to the area to convince ranchers to get behind the project.
While local business owners support the pipeline, Hawley’s presence riles the landowners, and Mercy is torn. After ugly threats and multiple altercations escalate tensions in the county, Mercy discovers Hawley’s brutally mutilated body in the bar parking lot. When it appears Sheriff Dawson cares more about campaigning for reelection than investigating the case, Mercy vows to find Jason Hawley’s killer—even if she has to run against Dawson for sheriff to ensure justice is served.

But Mercy soon learns her former military pal had plenty of secrets. Her search for the truth brings unwanted exposure to the county’s dark side and risks deadly repercussions for the entire community.


I put in a request for this book a LONG time ago through my library and I squealed and jumped and down like a little girl when it finally arrived for me to check out. Just like No Mercy this book was fan-freaking-tastic!

Now that Mercy is out of the Army, she is trying to ease back into civilian life on her families South Dakota ranch, which is NOT going well at all.  To stay busy and sober at least some of the time, she takes a job at a local bar, but her life is turned ass over head when her friend and former Army buddy Jason Hawley comes to town.  See Jason works for Titan Oil, who is a huge Canadian Oil Company), and he is there to try and convince the citizens of Eagle River County that the proposed pipeline that Titan Oil wants to run through their community and ranches is a good thing.  The citizen's aren't buying it.  The citizen's want nothing at all to do with Titan Oil OR Jason Hawley.

Thing's get even worse when Mercy finds Jason's brutally murdered body outside the bar that she works at.  From Mercy's point of view no seems all that interested in finding the person who killed Jason and that includes the sheriff.  That's when Mercy makes it her personal mission to find Jason's killer.  But the deeper Mercy gets into finding Jason's killer, the more dark secrets she uncovers about her little South Dakota town.

As with Mercy Kill, Armstrong paints an extremely descriptive picture that you feel like you are actually there with Mercy.  Right there in Eagle River.  Such vivid pictures.  I thought that the story was a fast paced, intense roller coaster of a ride.  One that I just could not put down.  I really enjoyed that Mercy as well as the other characters in this book were written in a way that made them seem just as hard and borderline unforgiving as the landscape they inhabit.


No Mercy by Lori Armstrong

Title: No Mercy
Author: Lori Armstrong
Series: Mercy Gunderson Mystery #1
Publication Date: January 12th 2010


On medical leave from the Army, Mercy heads home to her family ranch after the recent death of her father, having been away for 20 years. It's her responsibility to decide whether to sell the ranch or not, and she gets little help from her sister and nephew. After a dead body is discovered on her land, Mercy butts heads with the sheriff, Mason Dawson.

When another body is discovered, Mercy starts her own investigation into the deaths. As she unearths buried secrets, her life--and the lives of family members--are put in jeopardy


I've had this book on my shelf FOREVER!  When I originally bought this book it was because of the blurb and the cover of the book....Anyone else ever do that?  I'm pissed at myself that this book sat on my TBR shelf for as long as it did...IT WAS FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC!

The book itself is told from the point of view of our main character, Mercy Gunderson, a female Army sniper.  Who is home on leave due to the death of her father. It's up to Mercy to figure out what's going to happen to the family ranch...Is she gonna sell or is she gonna stay. When things start getting really dicey around town, when the body of a dead Native American boy is found on her ranch.  It seems that with Mercy coming home, death follows her in 3's.

That's when she starts butting heads with the Sheriff Mason Dawson.  She doesn't think he's doing his job, he says he is.  She doesn't trust him, he wishes she would.  You know the beginning of a beautiful "friends with benefits" relationship.

Then things turn personal and Mercy isn't just looking for answers, she's looking for revenge.  When Mercy decides that she's had enough of Sheriff Dawson NOT doing enough she launches her own investigation and finds out some shocking revelations.  The people she thought she could count on start turning on her.  Not all is as it seems.

I guess the thing that bothered me the most about the book was that the main part of the plot was figuring out the deaths of 3 Native American kids.  It bothered me but at the same time it made the story VERY strong.  Another thing that bothered me was the politics.  I kind of got the "the only good Indian is a dead Indian" feel during parts of the book, but then again, this mentality also helped to solidify the story.

The things that I really liked about the book were that it was definitely a page turner.  Once I started No Mercy I had to keep going and it ticked me off that I had to do other things, like work and laundry, instead of finishing this book.  I also really liked how Mercy was written.  Sure she's an Army sniper but she's also human and has she's kind of written as a bad ass with feelings. The other characters were pretty great too...with the exception of Theo, who was written as the smarmy bastard that he ended up being.  Then there was the MINOR character who ended up playing a MAJOR role in how things ended up.

Overall, to say that I enjoyed No Mercy would be a vast understatement.  Immediately upon finishing No Mercy I started into book number 2 Mercy Kill.  I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys an excellent mystery. 


In My Mailbox March 13

In My Mailbox is a weekly event that gives book bloggers a chance share with each other what books got added to their to-be-read pile for the week. It was inspired by Alea of Pop Culture Junkie and hosted by Kristi of The Story Siren.

Before I get into the books that I got this week I just wanted to let you all know about the giveaways that I have going on.

1 Copy of A Creed in Stone Creek by Linda Lael Miller ends @ 11:59 pm CST March 18

2 Prize Packs - Miss Scarlet's School of Patternless Sewing by  Kathy Cano-Murillo ends March 20th at 11:59 pm CST

Now for the books that I got this week!  I got some goodies!


After years spent on ranches around Los Angeles, Clay Tahoma is delighted to be Virgin River's new veterinary assistant. The secluded community's wild beauty tugs at his Navajo roots, and he's been welcomed with open arms by everyone in town—everyone except Lilly Yazhi.
Lilly has encountered her share of strong, silent, traditional men within her own aboriginal community, and she's not interested in coming back for more. In her eyes, Clay's earthy, sexy appeal is just an act used to charm wealthy women like his ex-wife. She can't deny his gift for gentling horses, but she's not about to let him control her. There's just one small problem—she can't control her attraction to Clay.

But in Virgin River, faith in new beginnings and the power of love has doors opening everywhere.…

I used to think my sister and I were just two nice southern girls who'd get married in a few years and settle down to a quiet life. Then I discovered that Alina and I descend, not from good wholesome southern stock, but from an ancient Celtic bloodline of powerful sidhe-seers, people who can see the Fae. Not only can I see the terrifying otherworldly race, but I can sense the sacred Fae relics that hold the deadliest of their magic.

What did you get this week?  Leave me a link and I'll drop by and visit :)
When my sister was found dead in a trash-filled alley in Dublin, I came over to get answers. Now all I want is revenge. And after everything I've learned about myself, I know I have the power to get it....
MacKayla Lane's ordinary life underwent a complete makeover when she landed on Ireland's shores and was plunged into a world of deadly sorcery and ancient secrets.
In her fight to stay alive, Mac must find the Sinsar Dubh-a million-year-old book of the blackest magic imaginable, which holds the key to power over both the worlds of the Fae and of Man. Pursued by Fae assassins, surrounded by mysterious figures she knows she cannot trust, Mac finds herself torn between two deadly and irresistible men: V'lane, the insatiable Fae who can turn sensual arousal into an obsession for any woman, and the ever-inscrutable Jericho Barrons, a man as alluring as he is mysterious.

For centuries the shadowy realm of the Fae has coexisted with that of humans. Now the walls between the two are coming down, and Mac is the only thing that stands between them....

*For Review*

Marcus Williams and Francis Ackerman Jr. both have a talent for hurting people. Marcus, a former New York City homicide detective, uses his abilities to protect others, while Ackerman uses his gifts to inflict pain and suffering. When both men become unwilling pawns in a conspiracy that reaches to the highest levels of our government, Marcus finds himself in a deadly game of cat and mouse trapped between a twisted psychopath and a vigilante with seemingly unlimited resources. Aided by a rogue FBI agent and the vigilante's beautiful daughter–a woman with whom he's quickly falling in love–Marcus must expose the deadly political conspiracy and confront his past while hunting down one of the most cunning and ruthless killers in the world.

*ARC Tour*

Nessa lost her memory following a near-death experience. Dominic is a Hunter dealing with his own problems with memory and sanity. When the two are put together to battle the forces of darkness-while trying to restore what they've lost-their all-consuming passion becomes an even greater unknown.


Passion. Fate. Loyalty.
Would you risk it all to change your destiny?
The last thing Kelsey Hayes thought she'd be doing this summer was trying to break a 300-year old Indian curse. With a mysterious white tiger named Ren. Halfway around the world.
But that's exactly what happened.
Face-to-face with dark forces, spell-binding magic, and mystical worlds where nothing is what it seems, Kelsey risks everything to piece together an ancient prophecy that could break the curse forever.
Tiger's Curse is the exciting first volume in an epic fantasy-romance that will leave you breathless and yearning for more.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Better Late Than Never ~ Pleasure of a Dark Prince Winners!

Good Morning everyone!  I apologize for not getting the winner of Pleasure of a Dark Prince up sooner.  I had some things come up in real life that I needed to deal with first.  So to make it up to you all...I will be drawing 2 winners!

Drum Roll Please.........

Melissa S.


Aanchal Gounder

Congratulations to our winners!  I will be emailing you shortly and you will have 48 hours to confirm.  Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Blog Tour ~ A Creed In Stone Creek - Giveaway and BONUS features!

Good Morning everyone!  I hope it's the beginning of a beautiful day for you!  Today is my day along the blog tour for Linda Lael Miller's new trilogy.  And have I got surprises for YOU!  Let's start with the delicious YUMMINESS found on Take a Cowboy Home, a web page specifically designed for this new trilogy.

Here is a little blurb about each of the books in the new trilogy.

Plus, there is the book trailer, "a behind-the-scenes video of the cover photo shoot, webisodes and a sexy photo gallery."  Ok, so I can't resist showing you the book trailer....

And if ALL THAT yumminess wasn't enough.  There is a photo contest being held on Book Trib, looking for THE sexiest cowboy (Click "THE sexiest cowboy" to learn more).  The Winner receives the following:

"One lucky winner will receive a custom-made “Creed Cowboys”-inspired buckle from our sponsor Montana Silversmiths, a signed copy of A Creed in Stone Creek with a special message from Linda, and a personal donation to A Horse Connection, a nonprofit equine therapy organization. The winning photo will also be featured on Linda’s Facebook page."

For the record, I LOVE Montana Silversmiths stuff!

NOW for the giveaway!

 I am giving away 1 copy of A Creed In Stone Creek to a lucky winner!  Now here are the rules:

1. Please leave a comment with an email address so that I can contact you if you win.

2. Open to US and Canada

3. Contest closes at 11:59 pm on March 18.