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Monday, December 15, 2008

Third Option by Vince Flynn

The Third Option
by Vince Flynn

I listened to the audio cassette version read by Nick Sullivan. He's a great reader, and it's really important for me to have a reader I like. There's some books that I like, but the reader just kills it for me. Nick Sullivan is a wonderful reader.

This book opened with Mitch Rapp in Germany about to take care of some baddies. Unfortunately, the mission didn't go too well as his team member had a different assignment. He got shot, and now he must find the killer and find out why all this happened. I like the pace, it's quite exciting, so I'm going to listen the next book in the series I can get my hands on. I noticed that I haven't been finishing my romance novels lately. I wonder if I'm aging and this is what's happening. Review

Rancorous political infighting surrounds the selection of a successor to the dying head of the CIA just as Mitch Rapp, the agency's top operative, embarks on a dangerous mission to take out a well-known German industrialist believed to be supplying Middle East terrorists with highly sensitive equipment critical to constructing a nuclear bomb. When Rapp's ultimately successful mission is compromised from within, ailing CIA director Thomas Stansfield puts his imprimatur on the efforts of his chosen successor, Irene Kennedy, director of the agency's Counterterrorism Center, to identify the powerful interests both inside and outside the agency that wanted Rapp to fail.
The motive soon becomes clear; there are people who'll stop at nothing to remove Kennedy from the helm of the agency after Stansfield dies. One thing they didn't count on was Rapp's survival, and now he's a lethal weapon whose sights are fixed directly on the most powerful among them. This is a strong, swift thriller, a bit predictable (the senator in the black hat has dogs named Caesar and Brutus) but nonetheless involving. Author Vince Flynn sustains the dramatic tension from the opening paragraph to the last; in Mitch Rapp, he's got the makings of a promising series hero. --Jane Adams

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Vince Flynn's Mitch Rapp Series

This is the order of the book:
Term Limits,
Transfer of Power,
The Third Option,
Separation of Power,
Executive Power,
Memorial Day,
Consent to Kill,
Act of Treason,
Protect and Defend,
Extreme Measures.

I'm listening to Third Option audio cassette right now. It's the only unabridged I can find. I might actually have to read the first and second book. I like this character very much.

And yes, this is going to be a movie, soon.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Lee Child's Jack Reacher Series

I love this series too. These are the book in order:

Killing Floor
Die Trying
Running Blind
Without Fail
The Enemy ( I read this first because it's a prequel)
One Shot
The Hard Way
Bad Luck and Trouble
Nothing to Loose

Jack Reacher is an awesome character. I am thinking of casting him in an actor, but I can't think of any one who'd be perfect as him. For sure, that actor has to be tall.

Not sure if they're going to make this one into a movie yet, but I sure hope so. I just finished Running Blind, and will start Without Fail when my laundry piles up again. :)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Tripwire by Lee Child

Tripwire (Jack Reacher, No. 3)
by Lee Child

Jack Reacher finally found a girl he might be willing to stay in one zip code for. Or had he? I'm getting ahead of myself. Jack is in Florida, digging ditches and building his muscles into delicious proportion. Then people looking for him started dropping dead. Not long after that, he's deep into the mysterious cover up by the military. He's an ex-MP himself and can go to places where no ordinary mortals might be able to go.

I got sucked into this series by a great story and an enthralling reader, Dick Hill. Dick and I have done many loads of laundry together. He's even there when I get hit with my penchant to wax and mop my floors for the nth time in a day. I highly recommend this book even if you're primarily a romance reader like moi.

Here's interesting facts about Jack Reacher, according to his creator/author, Lee Child.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

I Got an "I Love Your Blog Award"

Thanks to Bobbie for giving me this award. I'm so happy to get it. I meant to do this post right after I got the award. Unfortunately, I had to replace my sidings, so it was delayed a whole lot. But, this award doesn't spoil, so I'm doing it now.

After receiving the award you are supposed to pay it forward:
1) Add the logo of your award to your blog.
2) Add a link to the person who awarded it to you.
3) Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
4) Add links to those blogs on your blog.
5) Leave a message for your nominees on their blogs.

Here are my seven blogs:

1. Sidney's My Sari Sari Store. This is a photoblog about the Philippines. I find it very informative and pleasant to go there because he's giving me view of the Philippines that I never got to see before.

2. Charles' The Queer Chef. And just like he promised, he's queer and he'll make your taste buds cheer. Right now, he's not into cheering your taste buds, but he's definitely going to make you cheer when you visit him.

3. Sanna's MisbehavinAngel. She's a mother of one from Germany. She's creative, and she's into books like I am. She's quite an impressive lady.

4. Acey's tralalalala. You have to be there to know it. It's about her life, thoughts and arts. She's quite an impressive artist.

5. Cathy's Me and My World. She's is creative and wonderful and it shows in her blog. She's a fabulous cook also. I love her food. I know what I'm talking about because I have eaten her food.

6. Pamela's Writer's Block Review. She's writes book review like I wanted to write them.

7. Lori's Reading Corner. She's a book blogger, and I like her reviews too.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Shadow Music by Julie Garwood

Shadow Music: A Novel
by Julie Garwood
Read by Davina Porter

The Secret is my first Julie Garwood book. It's a story set in the highlands. This one is too, but the girl, Gabriel is a related to the King of St. Biel. I find that I don't like this story as I did the others. I don't know if it's the reader who sounds like a very old woman. The heroine is young, and the narrator is old or at least sounds like a really old person. I was disappointed. Maybe it's the story. I just don't know. But, it's Julie Garwood, so I had to read it. I've always like her book, except this one.

About the book:

Throughout her acclaimed writing career, Julie Garwood has captivated readers with characters who are compelling, daring, and bursting with life. Now one of the most popular novelists of our time proudly returns to her beloved historical romance roots–in a thrilling tale of love, murder, adventure, and mystery set against the haunting landscape of medieval Scotland.

For Princess Gabrielle of St. Biel, Scotland is a land of stunning vistas, wild chieftains, treacherous glens, and steep shadows–skullduggery, betrayal, and now murder. Prized for her exquisite beauty, the daughter of one of England’s most influential barons, Gabrielle is also a perfect bargaining chip for a king who needs peace in the Highlands: King John has arranged Gabrielle’s marriage to a good and gentle laird. But this marriage will never take place.

For Gabrielle, everything changes in one last burst of freedom–when she and her guards come upon a scene of unimaginable cruelty. With one shot from her bow and arrow, Gabrielle takes a life, saves a life, and begins a war.

Within days, the Highlands are aflame with passions as a battle royal flares between enemies old and new. Having come to Scotland to be married, Gabrielle is instead entangled in Highland intrigue. For two sadistic noblemen, underestimating Gabrielle’s bravery and prowess may prove fatal. But thanks to a secret Gabrielle possesses, Colm MacHugh, the most feared man in Scotland, finds a new cause for courage. Under his penetrating gaze, neither Gabrielle’s body nor heart is safe.

A gripping novel that delves into the heart of emotions–unyielding passions of love, hate, revenge, and raw desire–Shadow Music is magnificent gift from Julie Garwood and a crowning achievement in her amazing career.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Sweet Smoke by David Fuller

Sweetsmoke by David Fuller

Bobbie is hosting a contest for a brand new signed edition of this book. Read the first chapter here. What an interesting first chapter. Go to A Taste: Chapter 1 excerpt. If the rest of the book is the same, then this one is a potential keeper.

If you also want a chance to win, visit there now. Drawing is on November 7.

Here's what other authors and readers are saying about this book:
Product Description
"David Fuller vividly and movingly describes the life of Cassius, a slave on a Virginia tobacco plantation. Meticulously researched and beautifully written, Sweetsmoke resonates with unforgettable characters and is a gripping story of loss and survival."
--Robert Hicks, author of The Widow of the South

"Sweetsmoke is a fascinating and gripping novel about the Civil War. The slave, Cassius Howard, is a great fictional character, and his story is part mystery, part love story, and a harrowing portrait of slavery that reads with the immense power of the slave narratives. A tour de force for David Fuller."
--Pat Conroy, author of Beach Music and South of Broad

"With Sweetsmoke, David Fuller gives an extraordinarily nuanced, privileged, and convincing view of the world of slavery during the American Civil War, and of the hearts and minds of the men and women who had to live in that world."
--Madison Smartt Bell, author of All Souls' Rising and Toussaint Louverture

The year is 1862, and the Civil War rages through the South. On a Virginia tobacco plantation, another kind of battle soon begins. There, Cassius Howard, a skilled carpenter and slave, risks everything--punishment, sale to a cotton plantation, even his life--to learn the truth concerning the murder of Emoline, a freed black woman, a woman who secretly taught him to read and once saved his life. It is clear that no one cares about her death in the midst of a brutal and hellish war. No one but Cassius, who braves horrific dangers to escape the plantation and avenge her loss.

As Cassius seeks answers about Emoline's murder, he finds an unexpected friend and ally in Quashee, a new woman brought over from another plantation; and a formidable adversary in Hoke Howard, the master he has always obeyed.

With subtlety and beauty, Sweetsmoke captures the daily indignities and harrowing losses suffered by slaves, the turmoil of a country waging countless wars within its own borders, and the lives of those people fighting for identity, for salvation, and for freedom.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Vince Flynn Signing

Barnes & Noble , 7700 West Northwest Hwy, Dallas, TX 75225
7:00 p.m.

Yay! I love this Barnes and Noble location because it's in the same row as Cheesecake Factory, Red Door by Elizabeth Arden, Container Store (not that I have any intention of going there anytime soon), and Tom Thumb. It's also right across North Park Mall.

I was just checking on audible what's new with Vince Flynn. I wanted to get unabridged audio book for my iPod. It's great company when I'm sorting my closet, or folding the laundry. I'm quite new to his Mitch Rapp character. I like that guy. I like his reader. I especially like him in Transfer of Power.

These are the order of Mitch Rapp books.
Term Limits, Transfer of Power, The Third Option, Separation of Power, Executive Power, Memorial Day, Consent to Kill, Act of Treason, Protect and Defend, Extreme Measures

Here's the quandary. I'm about to buy the audio of this book from audible. If I buy a book, it's not because I have time to read it anytime soon. So, I guess I can purchase a signed copy for my This Book For Free site. Except this is a heavy hardcover, so I'll have to limit my winner to local. Hmm. What's a girl to do?!

Books Every Which Where

I don't know if I had talked about this before. I keep a few blogs. I don't really understand this, but sometimes, I just want a different scene. Well, I'm the same with reading. I would read up to 15 books simulataneously without losing track. In fact, I got so good at it, I pushed it to 20 once, but I tend to forget plots and character at near 20.

The point is, I read so many because if the book is not compelling enough, my mind would wonder around. So, to keep my time from wasting, I'd just jump into the next book until next time. Also, it's a location thing. I'd have a book at any and every place I might have to wait. Bathroom. Kitchen. Car. Purse. Closet. Bedroom. Chairs. I have them every where. It got so bad, that one time I ask my 2 years old to get me a book and he said, "which book, Mommy?".

I'm wondering if anyone is as nutty as I am when it comes to reading. What's your quirks?

Friday, October 17, 2008

Book Contest at Ruth Schaller

Ruth Schaller of Books Books and More Books is hosting a contest. There will be 5 winners for the set of ten books below. Here are some of the ways you can win.
- leave a comment
- subscribe to Books, Books, and more Books! Ruthie's Book Reviews via the link in the right sidebar
-Post about this contest anywhere (your own blog, website, etc.) and post the link here for me to verify the posting!

I hope to win one of these sets. Wish me luck!

2. ISOLATION By Travis Thrasher
4. THE MONSTERS: Mary Shelley and the Curse of Frankenstein By Dorothy Hoobler , Thomas Hoobler
5. THE MYRTLES PLANTATION: The True Story of America 's Most Haunted House By Frances Kermeen
6. GHOSTLY ENCOUNTERS: True Stories of America 's Haunted Inns and Hotels By Frances Kermeen
7. THE TERROR By Dan Simmons
8. DRACULA By Bram Stoker
9. WHEN GHOSTS SPEAK: Understanding the World of Earthbound Spirits By Mary Ann Winkowski
10. THE HISTORIAN By Elizabeth Kostova

Saturday, October 11, 2008

City of Ember

The City of Ember (Books of Ember)
by Jeanne DuPrau
List Price: $6.99
Published in 2008
ISBN-10: 0-385-73628-2

My daughter and I went to see this movie last Friday. I have no idea what it's all about until I was watching it. It's a story about people living under the earth. I didn't quite catch why they had to live way down under.

It's always nighttime in the city of Ember. Their light source is light bubls which run on cranky and failing generator. The children have education, but instead of graduation day, they have 'Assignment Day'. After 'graduation', the kids gets their life job. Doon Harrow and Lina Mayfleet became a pipe assistant and messenger.

Like any other civilization, there's always that forward thinking individual who thinks there's something better out there. These two were inquisitive, and curious enough to find out what's out there. I have not read the book, but the movie was good.

Top Five Cast:
David Ryall ... Chief Builder
Ian McElhinney ... Builder
Harry Treadaway ... Doon Harrow
Tim Robbins ... Loris Harrow
Bill Murray ... Mayor Cole

Friday, October 3, 2008

Ghost Town: Ricky Gervais, Tea Leoni and Greg Kinnear

Last Thursday night, my husband and I went to this movie, GHOST TOWN. I wanted to see THE WOMEN, but we missed the time. Our kids had a late karate class they can't miss. They're going to test for blue belts on Saturday.

I like this romantic comedy. The premise goes like this. A dentist, Bertram Pincus (Gervais) had a surgery and came out seeing ghost. When Frank (Kinnear) noticed, he convinced Bertram to help him with his wife (Leoni) love life. There's a lot of funny moments and some tears too. It's a fun date movie.

As a side note: Greg Kinnear is hot, hot, hot!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

My Best Friend's Girl: Dane Cook, Kate Hudson, Jason Biggs

There are many laugh out loud moments of this film. It is not for kids, but I enjoyed watching it with my husband. My favorite line:
"It's not gonna suck itself"

It's a movie about a guy who is sort of a date specialist. He gives these girls horrible dates so they would go back to their old boyfriends. Then of course, there's always the one person that gets to him.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Arthur's April Fool (Arthur Adventure Series) by Marc Brown

I'm doing homework with my 7 years old every night from Monday to Thursday. We read books together every night of the week. Sometimes, the other kids would join us, other times, it's just us. Last night, we were reading a book that Yoav borrowed from the library. The story is about Arthur's fear of Tank, a giant, hulking boy who's a bully. When Arthur was performing a magic show, Tank volunteered just to intimated Arthur. Well, Arthur found his bravado at last. Here are the parts that made my kids laugh.

Arthur: Let me saw this man in half.
Tank pales and backs away.
Arthur: Give me my saw Francine. Here's the bucket to catch the blood...
Tank fell off the stage.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Books I've Read in September

90. Pemberly - Emma Tennant
89. These Three Remain* - Pamela Aidan
88. Duty and Desire* - Pamela Aidan
87. An Assembly Such as These* - Pamela Aidan
86. The Confessions of Fitzwilliam Darcy - Mary Street
85. Zoya by Danielle Steel
84. Fielding, Joy - Grand Avenue 5♥

Whoa...I think I've outdone myself by reading about Mr. Darcy here. I think my favorite is Mary Street's Confessions. It's short and sweet. I would sometimes get lost in Pamela Aidan's series because of new characters she introduced.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Zoya by Danielle Steel

by Danielle Steel
Published in 1989

I read this book in early 90s. Last night, I watch the movie with Melisa Gilbert in it. My mother and I enjoyed watching it thoroughly.

In the Philippines, she's one of the most common authors that made it there. So, I made it a habbit to read her books whenver I see them. I especially like this book because it's both sad, and triumphant. I cried in many places. It touched my heart.

Zoya is a countess from Russia who had to move to France during the revolution. Her grandma kept her safe, and the rest of her family were slaughtered. From living in grand palaces to a tiny room in Paris, she kept her wonderful spirit. She has a happy love life, but they just don't last very long. Personally, I think it's Rasputin's curse.

Have you read this book? Wha did you think of it?

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Letters from a Desperate Dog by Eileen Christelow

I can't believe how fast he's growing. Almost 2 and a half. He hasn't mastered the art of talking quite yet, but it doesn't stop him from trying. Yesterday, he was standing on my knees and called out to his siblings. "Look at me, Yoel." I was so tickled.

When we were reading Letters from a Desperate Dog by Eileen Christelow, he's reading right there alongside me. It's like an echo. When I realized this, I read in shorter sentences to give him time to catch up. Now, he can't wait 'til we read to the kids next. He'll come to me with a book and say, "Come everybody, time to read." Then he echoes alongside me for the duration of the story. My children loves this story of a dog who is desperate to please his master who always seems to be bellowing about something or the other. We've read this book many times since we 'discovered' it a few days ago.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Books and Movies in August

August was a fun month. I get to read lots of wonderful books. Saw a lot of movies with my kids, but mostly with my husband on a date.

August Books:
83. Child, Lee - Killing Floors* 4♥
82. Flynn, Vince - Transfer of Power* 5♥
81. Lindsey, Johanna - Marriage Most Scandalous* 4♥
80. Child, Lee - The Enemy* 4♥
79. Steel, Danielle - Toxic Bachelors* 4♥
78. Beaton, MC - Death of a Maid* 3♥
77. Card, Orson Scott - Ender’s Game 5♥
76. King, Stephen - Stationary Bike 3♥
75. Kenyon, Sherilyn - Acheron (Dark-Hunter, Book 12) 5♥
74. JR Ward - Lover Enshrined 5♥

August Movies:
80. Only You - Marisa Tomei
79. Death Sentence - Kevin Beacon
78. She’s the Man - Amanda Bynes
77. Traitor* - Don Cheadle
76. Henry Poole is Here* - Luke Wilson
75. Sharpe’s Eagle - Sean Bean
74. Martian Child - John Cusack
73. Tropic Thunder* - Ben Stiller
72. Pineapple Express* - James Franco, Seth Rogen
71. Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants* - Alexis Bledel
70. The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor* - Brandon Fraser
69. 3:10 to Yuma - Christian Bale, Russell Crowe
68. Nims Island - Gerard Butler, Jodi Foster

Friday, August 22, 2008

The Enemy by Lee Child

The Enemy (Jack Reacher Novels)
by Lee Child
Dick Hill (Reader)
Audio CD
Published in 2004
ISBN-10: 1-59355-394-3

This is my first Lee Child book. One of my ThisBookForFree winners won the newest title by this author and I got curious. The Enemy is actually the 7th novel, but the event takes place two years before the first book of Jack Reacher series. I decided that it is a good place to start.

I enjoyed it. The reader, Dick Hill, is very engaging and he has this pleasant voice that makes me lost track of time while I'm doing my laundry, scrubbing the floor and all kinds of other things mother of five must do.

The story started with a death of a two star General in a motel on a New Years Eve. I like how I get to hear about MP. Took me a long while to guess whodunit. It's definitely worth listening. I loaded up on the next book, Killing Floor.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Marriage Most Scandalous by Johanna Lindsey [Ruby Tuesday, too]

This child in ruby red usually wants my attention the second I get engrossed in a book. Actually, make that engrossed with anything. He's my last baby, and I'm already missing the time when he couldn't care less what I am doing.

Marriage Most Scandalous
by Johanna Lindsey
Audio CD

Do you know how weird it is to listen to a book in your iPod and the play list is scrambled worse than an egg? I was listening to CD 1, 2, 5, 4, 3, was crazy. I still like the story of Sebastian Townsend. He seem lucky or maybe talented or both. He doesn't know himself. First he was an heir, then he's cut off from his inheritance because he killed his best friend in a duel...

I just wish it wasn't scrambled when I was listening to it because it's got great flow to it. This is a historical romance. Lady Margaret is a likeable girl. She's not TSTL* heroine.

I'm going to be giving away the CD's at anyone interested. Watch out for that post at this site. The post should be up in a week or so. I usually only give out books, but this is audio book, so a book nonetheless.

*Too Stupid To Live

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Thursday Thirteen: Nine Alphabets

I wanted to do a different Thursday Thirteen. I guess I'll see at the end of this week if I have at least 13 books suggestions beginning with these 9 author's last name initials that I am missing on my author's list.

I will list book suggestion along with the blogger and her blog. You'll be permanently embedded on this post. :)

I was just looking at my author's list and found that I have 9 missing alphabets. I guess I have to go now and read authors with last names beginning with:
I, N, O, Q, U, V, X, Y, Z.

I think I have read authors with those names, but did not review their books. I have much to learn about writing a reveiw for a book. I just have no idea how to go about it. I need more words.

Hey, have you got good books with those beginning author's last name as above?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Lover Enshrined (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 6) by J.R. Ward

I'm been through this many times. I would read a book. I would enjoy it so much, that every thing pales in comparison. It's such a big let down. I just finished two wonderful vampire books one of which was Acheron by Sherilyn Kenyon:

I was actually dragging my feet about reading Lover Enshrined by JR Ward because I knew that when I finished reading it, it will be a while before the next one comes out. I don't think I have forgotten the story of the first book, Dark Lover to re-read it again.

It was funny how in the beginning, I was uber annoyed with the flying 'Hs' in the book. You have to read it to believe it, but these hot guys goes by the names of Phury, Rhage, etc. See all the Hs? But you know what? Once I got over my hang-up about 'H', the story's great. I love it! There are plenty of sex to please most people. Fortunately, I'm not most people and I tend to rush through love scenes.

This book is about the twin of Zhadist. He's the Primale. He gets to 'bred' with a whole lot of Choosen to make sure there's going to be many pregnancies to replenish the diminishing supply of vampire race. Why have a "Primale"? It is to make sure that the 'parents' of the new generation will be the creme-de-la-creme.

This story wasn't like the other book, which is probably good because who wants to read recycled plot huh? I did feel that there was less romance between Phury and Cormia...but this guy was partner to a whole bunch of 'Choosen' and the author has to reduce that to just one person. The book took a whole month to grow with me. Once it got going, it's going great...just getting used to the set up was tough.

Phury is an addict, and no matter how justified or how handsome or how the person was in pain, it is very hard to overcome an addict and make that character into a hero. JR Ward pulled this off, and I enjoyed the last part of the book on my last days in San Francisco when I'm about all toured out and was ready to relax with a book before going home.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Acheron (Dark-Hunter, Book 12) by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Acheron (Dark-Hunter, Book 12)
by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Buy it Here
Published in 2008
ISBN-10: 0-312-36215-3

Finally, the most awaited book of all Dark-Hunter is here, and it didn't disappoint. I read it in two days, because I still have five children to watch, but I basically have stop doing everything else. Thank goodness my mother is here, or the laundry would be unbelievably high.

This book is almost 800 pages, and I wish there was more. I wanted more of Simi, and more of Ash, and more of everything. I think I'll still buy and read this book if it were 2,000 pages long. I finally get to see the 3D version of that b!+**-goddess Artemis, as Simi likes to call her.

Now, I feel like I want to go back to book one and make the journey and read the whole series again. Unfortunately, my MIL have my collection, and she ain't very happy with me at the moment. I have low tolerance for BS, and I guess we finally have our first 'ignoring-each-other' thing. Fine by me, but drat if it isn't inconvinient. Now, I have to buy the whole collection again. Bummer.

I would say more about this book, but I just don't know what to talk about without giving away the story.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Books I'll Read at Some Point

I'm surfing the net for books to put in my iPod for my trip to SF.
Reading GuideKing Leopold's Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror, and Heroism in Colonial Africa
by Adam Hochschild
List Price: $15.00
Published in 1999

I want to read this because it has five stars from Amazon readers. One of my super-favorite novels, The Poisonwood Bible received 4.5 stars...and that was a thrilling tale. Too bad audible do not have the audio book for this title.

Heart of Darkness (Norton Critical Editions)
by Joseph Conrad

List Price: $11.90
Published in 2005
ISBN-10: 0-393-92636-2

Then these:
Good Harbor: A Novel (Paperback)
by Anita Diamant

The Last Days of Dogtown: A Novel (Paperback)
by Anita Diamant

The Space Between Us: A Novel (P.S.) (Paperback)
by Thrity Umrigar

Friday, July 25, 2008

Sky Watch Friday: Let's Take a Walk

My husband took a few pictures for my Skywatch.Let's take that walk with him, shall we?

He took a nice little walk, and saw that this would make a nice post.He walked closer still....
Each step bring him closer to this opening...
And when he's there, still more to see...
Isn't this a nice doorway into something?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Bean Trees by Barbara Kingsolver

This is a moving novel about Taylor Greer and her journey to nowhere. On the way, she was handed a baby of undetermined age. She raised her as her own. Her friends and acquaintance are colorful and remarkable. It's a tragedy that I had to listened to this book with half an ear, but I enjoyed myself thoroughly when I could pay attention. This book is highly recommended by anyone who had ever read it. I find this novel to be gritty, and not my type. I like cheerful, funny novels with love story and happily ever after. I like them as Susan Elizabeth Phillips writes them. I like happy-ever-afters kind of story. This one's realistic enough to be very uncomfortable. I guess that is what makes it such a great book.

I think my favorite Kingsolver book so far is The Poisonwood Bible. That was also a gritty novel, but it's epic about a family of missionary in Africa. It's so well developed, I can't help falling in love with it.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Mama Mia

I had a ball watching this movie. I was humming in my head to all the beats and song. I had no idea I know about ABBA songs so much! If you're a musical fan, then this movie is for you. My husband came with me and snored through it. We're both happy. He got his sleep and I get to see my movie, and we get to date.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Sky Watch: Museum Trek

Wasn't it a spectacular day for going to the Museum? It was very warm, but just a hair short of hot. We had fun!

click here to play

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Midwives by Chris Bohjalian

Chris Bohjalian wrote a compelling story about a birthing by midwife gone wrong. Sibyl Danforth, ex-hippie, experience midwife made a call to save a child life and changed her life forever. It made me realized how lucky I am to be having my child in the hospital as each labor seem to take to me to the edge of death's door. I think midwives are wonderful, but not as safe as a hospital birth when it comes to complication.

Sure, we can just travel to the hospital any time, but when you're trapped by the weather, that's when it gets hairy. This is that story. When something as spectacular and common as birth becomes a nightmare. This is narrated by Sibyl's 14-year-old daughter when she's an adult. I find the story compelling.

I'm definitely going to read more books by this author. Love to win free books? Check out this link.

Friday, July 11, 2008

What Matters Most by Louanne Rice

I usually enjoy Louanne Rice's books. I first read her Dream Country and was so touch by the characters. I emerged from the story bleary-eyed and satisfied. I cried over her Home Fires, I was so touched. Follow the Stars Home just about broke my heart into million little pieces. In Cloud Nine, Safe Harbour and Firefly Beach, I didn't want to stop reading, I just truly enjoyed her characters and their lives. Then I started reading The Perfect Summer and just stopped for no special reason. I think it was because I veg out on her books and needed a break.

I picked her books again with this one, and it wasn't a Louanne Rice I know. This is a story about Sister Bernadette and Tom Kelly, and of their son they left behind in Ireland, Seamus Sullivan and his love of Kathryn. For 23 years, Tom stayed near Sister Bernadette, working as a groundskeeper.

What Matters Most is not about love. It's about being true to your vocation no matter the wreckage it left behind. While Sister Bernadette might make for a good Nun, she sure sucked as a mother, and as someone who's supposed to love Tom Kelly. She's so selfish, I just want to dive into the book and slap her a little.

While she was pregnant, she received a calling from Mother Mary, which she took to mean that she has to be a Nun. Never mind that she's pregnant with Tom's child. Tom seem like a wonderful, hardworking man. She wouldn't even let Tom helped with raising their child or have much to say in what to do with him. She left the child in a convent orphanage, and not a nice one at that. Tom's family is rich and powerful and good people. What could it hurt for her to have Tom raise their child?

The story picks up from when they went back to Ireland to find their child. I just couldn't really excuse her behavior. Why didn't she let Tom raise their child? Why leave in Orphanage to suffer? It wasn't the Mother Superior who had an axe to grind that ruined their lives, it's actually her, Sister Bernadette - a selfish, self-centered woman! She's right up there my list of unlikeable heroine. The secondary story is about Seamus and Kathryn.

The story is effective, after all, Ms. Rice have managed to make Sister Bernadette so hateful. Only a talented author could draw out such emotion. Still, I wouldn't be keeping this book for re-reading. In fact, I'm sure to put this on my list of books never to be read again.

Would I recommend Louanne Rice's books? YES! Would I read more of her books? YES!
If you want story that's epic, sweeping, and magnificient, I suggest Jennifer Donnelly's The Tea Rose and The Winter Rose. There's a third book coming out, and I can't wait to read it.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Sky Watch Friday

I took many pictures of our trip to Nasher Sculpture downtown. I have absolutely no idea what this art was. It was a big sheet of metal, all rusty and curvy. We looked all around it. I don't know what's it for, but I guess that's art for you.

Visit Tom for more skywatch.
BTW, I'm inviting you to join Mailbox Monday. . There's be a post as early as Sunday noon, and you get to sign in to Mr. Linky and play. I hope yu can come and play.

Lawman by Diana Palmer

I listened to this book with Todd McLaren as the reader. He does not have many voice variations, but he's got a sexy voice. I would listen to him read phone book, but thankfully, I don't have to do that because he's got many books I can choose from.

This story is set in Jacobsville, Texas, hometown of the many Long, Tall, Texans by Diana Palmer. There's a bit of inconsistency about coffee drinking, and I'm missing the whole audio CD that I forgot to load into my iPod. Ugh. It's really exciting where I had to stop, but they're still not in love enough to have HEA. Happily Ever After is still my favorite kind of story.

Garon Grier is a neighbor of Grace Carver. They meet when Grace's grandma was dying. He's an FBI agent, and she's a potential bait, and the story works around it. I like Diana Palmer because I've always read hers. I like how her heroine never sleeps around. The men, they're rogues and they reformed, but Garon Grier is not so much a rogue as cruel and dim. He's got redeeming qualities, but for today's standard, he's like a caveman. He reminds me of Judith McNaught's hero in Whitney, My Love. He at least have an excuse of living in Regency or something really-old era.

I'd still recommend this book, but if you're new to Diana Palmer, I'd try some of Firebrand, or Night Fever that she wrote as Susan Kyle, or her Long, Tall, Texans. Those are great books.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

WW: Procrastination

That's my 4 years old boy. He's got such long hair, and I kind of like it long.
It's bills day, and I'd rather be organizing pictures. I'm listening to Diana Palmer's Lawman, in audio. I love the reader. He has such sexy voice. Really. If you don't believe me, listen to him. This is not the same book, but he's got really sexy voice. I'm going to buy his other audio books because of it.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Evan Almighty with Steve Carell

After our day at Nasher Sculpture, we stopped by the library to get our books. I also bought many, many chicklet books from the library sale. They're only a dollar each. I went to town for it. I think I must have bought 2 copies of The Devil Wears Prada. I am sure there's an explanation for buying two more copies of a book I have read and still own a copy already.

Right before checking out, I grabbed this DVD. I watch in with my children, and had a few good laughs. One of my children said he enjoyed it so much, we should do it again. He rarely says things like that.

What I got out of the story. G-d have a sick sense of humor in this movie. Evan (the Noah-alike) was to build an ark. First HE gave Evan chaos in his life by having animals follow him around like Peter of Hamlin, the piper. If that wasn't enough, He had him fired so he can have more time to build his ark. While it was hilarious, the other side of my brain was wondering why he didn't just use a whole bunch of jobless, homeless people to build his ark. If He can make an animal do His bidding, then maybe he should use it to good work by training the jobless by choice and the transient.

Overall, this is a fun movie to watch with the kids. Yes, even when they've seen it for the third time, it's still fun.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The Innocent Man: Murder and Injustice in a Small Town by John Grisham

Do you want to read it? Buy it here.

This is one of the few non-fiction book that I have read. I usually like to read fiction, especially the ones with love story and happy ending. It's one of my not-so-secret guilty pleasures.

This is a story about Ron Williamson. He seem to lead a charmed life in the beginning. He's better than good at baseball. He dreamed of being in the big league. For a while, he was too. Then he's accused of murder. Due to a series of fabricated evidence, desperate judges and prosecutor to find their suspect, among many other injustices, he ends up in death row.

He is very fortunate that his sister never gave up on him, as difficult as he is. This is a story of his journey to hell and back. I find it strange that I would read this story. I do not find the main character appealing, but is a gifted storyteller. It's a 5 ♥ story, but I rated it four because Ron is not my idea of a hero.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Photo Hunt: Pointed

While searching for some pointed pictures, I found this after hunting awhile. Boy, they don't call this 'photo hunt' for nothing!

Even when you don't look closely, you can see the the pointed lollipop stick hanging out of my baby's mouth. Can we say Dentist Bills together?

They don't get much candy, but when they do, they binge on it. No cavities as of last dental check-up. Whew!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Sky Watch: What's the Point?

My husband and my two children went out today. They took skywatch pictures for me.

You can try to guess what's the point of all these pictures, but just keep guessing some more.

They're almost there, and then you'll know.

It's that crane. You just never know what interest a person eh?

Just one more for good measure. Who would have thought!

For more sky watch, visit Tom.

A Home at the End of the World by Michael Cunningham

wrote a spectacular book about two friends Bobby and Jonathan, and a girl named Clare. Jonathan is gay and he's in love with Bobby. Clare and Bobby had a baby, and the three of them moved to the country and live together. It might not be happily ever after, but they're making do.

This is a book I wouldn't have read when I was younger. I prefer HEA [happily, ever after] books. This one, I am not sure if it's a happy ending. This book was made into a movie with Collin Farell. I have not seen the movie, but perhaps I should just to have a different perspective with this story. Michael Cunningham also wrote a book called, The Hours. This book won the Pulitzer prize, and was made into a movie with Nicole Kidman and Julian Moore.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Books I've Read in June

I do not have many books in June. I think it's because I've been tweaking templates, trying to figure out how it works, only to make it crash. Heee! The best one I like is Pillars of the Earth. It's an epic, it's a love story, and it's history. I love it! Then there's Duke of Shadows. Awesome romance book. I have it available for winning over here. It's a book not to be missed for any romance reader.

I saw a lot of movies too, but I got to go and get ready for my class.


67. Cunningham, Michael - A Home at the End of the Earth 4♥
66. Grafton, Sue - P is for Peril* 3♥

65. Follett, Ken - The Pillars of the Earth* 5♥
64. Talarigo, Jeff - The Pearl Diver63. Jeffries, Sabrina - Only a Duke Will Do
62. Enoch, Suzanne - Sin and Sensibility
61. Johanna Lindsey - Captive of My Desires 4♥
60. Alexander McCall Smith - Kalahari Typing School for Men 4♥
59. Meredith Duran - Duke of Shadows 5♥

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

P is For Peril by Sue Grafton

P Is for Peril
Audio CD
Read by Lorelai King
Published in 2002

I enjoyed this book. I have not followed Kinsey Milhone in over 3 years, and I picked up with this book. I think I should have gone back to L. I will later on, but this one's handy. In this book, she's looking to move her office to a different location. She's thinking about dating, too.

Kinsey was hired to look for a missing doctor. There's the doctor's ex-wife, and the wife, and a trainer. There's dead body, but then, Ms. Milhone always finds dead bodies. The mystery's intricately put together, and it kept me guessing til the end. I like that in a book. I don't mind knowing whodunit, but I prefer to be kept guessing.

Lorelai King is a fun reader, she varies her voice so I don't have to think too much who's talking. I've listened to her audio books with Janet Evanovich and other authors too.