Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wild Fling or Wedding Ring? by Mira Lyn Kelly

On her first night in Chicago, Cali McGovern meets seriously sexy surgeon Jake Tyler. Since she's still sore after her last relationship, her head's yelling Run —but her body's screaming for his touch…. For the first time ever, her head gets overruled! Jake isn't looking for a wife—been there, done that. But his hot new neighbor is in town just long enough for a wild fling…perfect! Yet when the time's up, he can't say goodbye. Is that just because of their sizzling chemistry—or something a whole lot scarier?

My thoughts:
I haven't read a Harlequin Presents in, oh, about 20 years and have to say that I probably went into this with not quite the open mind that I should have. I remember the Presents from back in the day, where the women were poor working their fingers to the bone virgins and the men were players with lots of money. They all really started sounding familiar book after book after book.

Anyway, I struggled through the first 10 pages for 2 days. This book should have only taken me 2 hours tops to read and it sat on my headboard taunting me for 48 hours. Within the first 10 pages I had not only one instance where my anal retentive ways sounded it's alarm and wouldn't let me continue on but then there were two. Most people probably wouldn't pick a statement apart and make it literal. I do.

Here is my example.....In the jazz club where Cali and Jake just happened to meet and spend an interesting couple of hours chatting and laughing away, Jake receives a phone call that he takes down the hallway. For a busy heart surgeon this is probably pretty common. Cali, completely gun shy decides it is time to head to the restroom then make a break for it. As Jake comes back down the hall, Cali comes out of the restroom and runs smack into Jake. This is where it got wonky on me. Wonky because instead of a shoulder bump of an encounter or even a body check where Cali unfortunately bounces back into the restroom the author elaborates to say that their legs tangled. Does that ever happen? I had visions of Cali jumping out of the restroom in full on flying bicycle kick.

Second example.....when Cali and Jake kissed (right around the leg tangling) she shuddered. In Mira Lyn Kelly's mind a shudder is an example of passion. In my mind a shudder is another way of saying "Ewwww. This isn't going to work for me, dude. I swallowed a little bit of my own vomit when attempting to snog you."

Not everyone would ever think these things were wonky with the book. I know, I'm anal. But now I bet you will think about it if you do read this book.

Once I ignored the issues I had with the first part of the book it did get better. I really liked Jake. Cali was just so-so but not unlikable. I liked the conflict that both of them had with themselves. Jake just didn't want commitment and Cali didn't want to risk her job. Oh did I mention that Cali's boss knows Jake and actually refers to him as "her Jackson"? I liked that when Cali explained her past experience with Jake the author could have kept it simple and standard that the evil ex used and then threw Cali away leaving her destitute, jobless, and alone but she didn't. Yes Cali's ex was a jerk-off but Cali was woman enough to admit that even though the ex was an ass it was her that allowed it to happen. I liked that. To tell the truth I was expecting to read the first version and was pleasantly surprised when it didn't happen.

I do wish that Cali's boss would have been a little more involved with the whole Jake and Cali thing. At least to give some closure. Her blessing or even the opposite. Personally if my star employee started dating "my Jackson" I would have something to say about it.

Overall this really was an OK book. It is the author's first and it does show but with time and experience she could really polish up her writing and start putting out really good books.I am giving this book 2.5 Stars and would say that if you were going to read it find it used or borrow it. I got my copy from free for my opinion on it.

On a side note if you noticed there are two covers of this book mine actually didn't come with a picture on the cover at all. Just a plain white book with black lettering. Still not sure why unless these are Harlequin's ARCs. The white one is the Harlequin Presents American cover and the blue one is the Mills & Boon copy from the UK. I really like the blue book better. I think it makes Jake look super hot. The White one is actually a little closer to Cali's description as she has lots of curly hair. Unfortunately, neither one got the color right. Cali actually was described as having ginger and dark cherry hair....which doesn't sound blonde to me.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

What am I reading Today?

I do have a review to post of the book I finished earlier this week but to tell the truth I am just plain lazy to put forth that much effort right now. So I decided to tell y'all what I am reading now.

I never have just one book going at any given time. I don't even have just two. I often have multiple books with fancy books marks or random pieces of paper marking my various stages of completion scattered around my dwelling (or car, or work). I never know why I have multiple books started. Many of them are super good books, some are just *meh* and others are just terrible (those will get finished just not anytime soon). So without getting into the psychology of why in the heck I would have so many books going on at once why don't I just tell you what it is that I am currently reading???
Love Cat and Bones. I'm about half way through with this and love it love it love it. I don't know why I am online when I could be reading this book! sent this one to me (along with another) to review. I haven't read a Presents in about 20 years. I am only 1 chapter into it so I am not far enough to have any judgement as of yet.
It has been literally years since I read the first book in this series. An interesting paranormal mystery series though. Not sure why more people aren't talking about these Harper Connelly books. I am about half way through it and am liking it quite a bit.
Not my typical reading material but someone had reviewed it and it sounded really good. I am not that far into the book but the little bit I have read I have to say it sure is funny!

Love Marjorie M Liu's Dirk and Steele books. I just started this one so I don't have much of an opinion yet.

Blog Hopping Time!!!!

Book Blogger Hop

Jennifer over at Crazy For Books hosts this awesome weekly event where we provide a link to our book blogs and post it on her site making it super easy to get our blogs out there and help us find some terrific blogs too. Hop on over and check out the rules and sign up!

Question of the week is....

Do you listen to music when you read? If so, what are your favorite reading tunes?

My answer is: Nope, very rarely. I tend to tune everything out while I am reading. Sometimes it is harder than other times. I don't like to add any other distractions to the background that I would just tune out anyway. Now in all honestly I love music. I usually have it going all the time but find that when I am reading and trying to listen to my favorite tunes I end up singing along with the music and not absorb what I am reading. I hate when I have to go back and read a paragraph over again because I wasn't paying attention.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Sweet Liar by Jude Deveraux

Book Description....

It was her father's dying wish that Samantha Elliot search for her grandmother, who'd disappeared from Louisville when she was a baby. So here she was, in big, dirty New York City...her parents were dead, her divorce was final, and she was all alone....

Michael Taggert was Samantha's landlord, and he was easily the most beautiful man she'd ever seen. He was charming, too -- his zest for life was so contagious that in his presence Sam bloomed like a flower after the rain. Yet Mike could only get so far with her -- when he tried to get closer, it was like running into a brick wall.

But Mike wouldn't give up. As they probed her grandmother's past, he was slowly uncovering the joy and affection Samantha had buried long ago -- and leading them closer to the dangerous truth about a bloody spring night in 1928, and a seductive blues singer named Maxie....

My Thoughts......
I really wanted to like this book but I just couldn't. I didn't like Samantha. Deveraux tried to make her such a complex character that when it all came down to it the reasoning behind her attitude towards Michael it was a bit of a let down. I wont get into the specifics but Samantha is not a strong female lead. Over the years my tastes in romance have matured to a point that I need a kick ass woman, one that takes the crap that life can throw at her and kick it in the balls. Samantha is not this woman. After losing her mother and her grandfather she took care of her father while still a young girl. When she became an adult she married and then took care of her husband. When her marriage failed she went back to her father only to find he was dying. Once he was gone, to fullfill his will she had to move to New York and live in the apartment her father set up for one year while looking for her long lost grandmother. Michael Taggert was the owner of her new apartment.
When faced with these obsticles in life Samantha rolled over and sank into a depression. She also was afraid to walk around the block in her new city. Not exactly sheltered growing up I am still not sure what in her character would terrify her of stepping outside her door. She grew up in Santa Fe. Not a tiny farming town in the middle of the country.
Now for Michael....Never really got a good grip on him. It starts out with Sam meeting Michael while he had been playing football with some buddies and that he was toned and obviously worked out. Later in the book Sam was thinking about how much she loved his body builder's body. To me, a man who works out and in shape is completely different than one who is a body builder. But whatever. The big issue I had with Mike was that he liked Samantha. I couldn't see the connection. I didn't understand him wanted to pursue her. She would let him kiss her then run for the hills. She would spend days ignoring him. She was either hot or cold....mostly cold. I don't even know if it was the puzzle of her psyche that intrigued him.
There are two things in this book that I found very redeeming.
1-The Taggert/Montgomery Clan--They came for a visit to "meet" Samantha because finally Michael was interested in someone. I loved the picnic scene. I liked his whole family. His twin brother Kane was so very interesting by the way. I think I liked him more than I liked Michael.
2-The Mystery of Maxie--Although I was initially confused as to the timeline of her disappearance overall the mystery was intriguing. She disappeared when Sam was a baby but in New York Sam and Mike were investigating what happened when she disappeared in 1928 which would make the entire timeline wonky. It would make Sam 70 odd years old. It really took me forever to figure out that Maxie had indeed disappeared in 1928 when she then met and married Cal, Samantha's Grandfather. Almost 40 years later she disappeared again. So, Sam is trying to find out why she ran away in the late 60s but also trying to find out what happened in 1928. Crystal Clear. Once I figured that out I was really interested in reading about Maxie and her life as a gangster's girl. Super interesting.
Unfortunately these points were not enough to redeem the book for me. If I can't like the characters it is hard for me to enjoy the book. I will have to read Kane's book though....he sounds yummy. My Rating 2.5 Stars.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Help celebrate Reading Angel's 500 follower milestone!

Reading Angel

A Shelfari buddy of mine (Reading Angel) is tickled pink to have reached an awesome milestone of 500 followers. To celebrate she is giving away an awesome prize. This giveaway is open to her US and her international followers too! You do have to be 16 years old though. So, go enter, support her and follow her too. She reviews some of the most incredible books too by the way. Between her and Candace I have increased my TBR by literally hundreds. Angel by the way was the one who suggested the Sin Craven books by Jenna Maclaine. Super Fab books by the way. Eternally grateful for her pimping them.