January 4, 2012

Reading Roundup: Goodbye year, hello books!

This two weeks went by way too fast for my liking, but thank God I didn’t have more days off because I ate like the world was ending, seriously, I’m afraid to put on non-elastic pants because I have a feeling they won’t fit!

Anyway, I had a lovely time spending Christmas with my parents, I had an embarrassing mountain biking accident, I won’t go into details but it involved what I think was a deer but it might have been a leaf, poison oak and my face. You can fill in the rest if you want (at least it was my face and not my butt, like the last time). But above all I read a lot, shocking, I know!

The first book I read was  Xavier's Loving Arms  by KT Grant. A steamy contemporary romance featuring a wounded heroine and a charming hero. I had some minor issues with the heroine but overall it was a very entertaining and touching story. Recommended for readers who love their romances on the steamy side but still want substance and a strong plot, not just sex. I’ll review it soon so stick around.

I read a couple of Sarah Dessen’s books. I started with  The Truth About Forever, followed by Just Listen and ended up with  What Happened to Goodbye. My favorite was Just Listen but I think my relationship with Ms. Dessen was just a winter fling because I’m pretty much done with her books. Nothing wrong with them, but too formulaic for my taste. After reading two of her books I was able to predict the outcome quite easily, although I totally see the appeal and why she’s the queen of YA.

After all those YA books I was in the mood for some m/m so I read one that I was saving for when I had time since I’m a huge fan of the author,  Song of Oestend  by Marie Sexton. I’m glad I waited to read this book because I had time to just sit, read and enjoy. The hero took some getting used to and I’m still not sure whether I like him or not, my main issue was his attitude towards sex and that he didn’t seem to have any control over his sexdrive. His love interest was a great character and they balanced each other out, so in the end I was able to enjoy their love story a lot. What makes this book wonderful, though, is the setting and the worldbuilding. It’s a fantasy/alternate reality western, so the story takes place in a very wild, Wild West.

I read Thea Harrison’s  True Colors, the novella part of her Elder Races series. It was more like a romantic suspense than a fantasy. It had a very alpha hero and a likeable heroine, they both were shifters and her animal was quite unique. A good addition to the series in terms of its entertainment factor, but it doesn’t add anything to the overall story, still a fun and quick read.

There's only one historical on my list but it's a good one:  The Lady's Secret by Joanna Chambers. Wonderful book about a lady masquerading as a man, it’s not the most original idea but the author’s voice is compelling, the book was entertaining and the hero discovers the heroine fairly early in the book, so the main conflict isn’t that she’s deceiving him. Review to come.

Another book I read was  Redwood Bend by Robyn Carr. This is the next installment in the Virgin River series, I think it comes out in February so you’ll have to wait to read the review. If you have read Hidden Summit you will know that the heroine is  Conner’s sister, I liked it but I think Hidden Summit was better. Review to come.

I started  Poughkeepsie by Debra Anastasia. It’s supposed to be based on a Twilight fanfic or inspired by Twilight or something like that. It has all the bad things Twilight had but none of the good, more addictive, ones. Whereas Twilight was a train wreck that you couldn’t stop yourself from watching, Poughkeepsie is just a train wreck period. I’m seriously considering quitting it but I’m still curious about what’s going to happen next with the self-absorbed girl who falls in love with the creepy homeless guy obsessed with her, who claims to be allergic to the sun and plays the imaginary piano (maybe I can’t stop myself from watching this wreck after all). I’m waiting to see if he strangles her before I DNF it, hopefully it will happen soon because this book is really long and I can’t imagine why (unless the author cramped all four Twilight books into one, God help us all!). This book is quite popular and has a high rating on both Amazon and Goodreads, so I’m alone here but I do wonder what people are seeing in this book that I’m not… 

Right now I’m reading  Angels of the Deep  by Kirby Crow. I’m right in the middle of it but so far I’m loving it. It’s a very, very dark and twisted m/m that’s half fantasy, half suspense, with a little bit of romance -I hope so-. The main character is angsty and tortured, and the bad guy is evil with a capital E. Not for the faint of heart because it has a lot of violence and gore, but if you feel like stepping out of your comfort zone you should go for it. I’ll definitely review this one, hopefully the ending won’t disappoint.

I’m also looking forward to starting  The Departed by Shiloh Walker and  Changeling Dawn by Dani Harper. I have them both on my Kindle waiting for me to finish Angels of the Deep.

That’s it! It was a very productive vacation and great way to end and start the year.

Finally a quick reminder for all our fellow bloggers that the Shameless Giveaway Hop will take place this month and you still have time to sing up. And to all out readers in general mark your calendars because it will be a week full of books, giveaways and fun.


  1. You were very productive over the break. I've been trying to read The Hobbit and haven't been motivated to get through it. Right now I'm only halfway. I hope LOTR trilogy keeps my attention better. I may need to pick something else up in the mean time. Can't wait for your reviews.

  2. Wow that is some good going, sounds like good picks too

    Lainy http://www.alwaysreading.net

  3. Hi Jade!

    I’m not the biggest fan of The Hobbit but LOTR blew my mind, The Fellowship of the Ring starts slow but you have to keep going because once the action starts you won’t be able to put it down. Just AMAZING!

    Thank Lainy!

    I think there's a little bit for everyone, and they are all great books, well, not all of them but almost!! ;-P

  4. Oh wow you got tons of reading done! Go Brie. Poughkeepsie sounds tough. I couldn't help but chuckle a bit at your description of it. I didn't get as much reading during the break as you but I can continue to live through your reviews. It's fine with me :)

  5. Happy New Year Brie!

    Wow, that was quite a vacation there :) Gosh, I wish I had time off and just read LOL.

    I've enjoyed the two Sarah Dessen that you've read. What Happened to Goodbye is still sitting in my TBR pile. My problem with them is not enough romance ^_^; I know they're YA... but if you're to put a love interest, well please, give us more!

    I'm looking forward to your reviews! I'm glad you thought Hidden Summit was stronger than Redwood Bend. I read Redwood Bend and thought it was nice, but not amazing. Hoping Hidden Summit will be more my tastes :)

  6. Hi Alexis!

    Poughkeepsie is weird… I’m giving it a second chance this weekend because I hate wasting money and I want to at least read half the book, but I won’t keep my hopes up.

    Hi Nath!

    I agree with you, those books need more romance in them. The heroes where lovely but they are barely in the books. I get that the books are about other issues that have nothing to do with romance, but then don’t put a romantic interest. I guess this is just about personal taste, I do prefer my books heavy on the romance, obviously, and I’m disappointed when the romance is light and the plot doesn’t make up for it.

    Redwood Bend wasn’t bad but definitely not the best and I had some issues with some of the plot developments and the heroine’s actions and reactions… Let me know how you like Hidden Summit!

  7. Totally agree with you Brie. I know these are YA books and I don't expect HEA endings... but I expect HEA for now and if there is one, well you have to show a little more romance.

    I will, although no idea when I'll be reading Hidden Summit ^_^;


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