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Showing posts from August, 2009

Mailbox Mondays

Our Host for Mailbox Monday

Marcia of the Printed Page

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week (checked out library books don’t count, eBooks & audio books do). Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

James and I discovered a great little bookshop in the small town of Watsonville this past week - Crossroads bookstore. Not only did they have a great assortment of new and used books, they had a friendly shop kitty called Bookie. We picked up several books including:

Presidents Reading Project

Personal Reading Challenge

for Father

For James

Plus I received two review books from Harlequin Teen this week:


Courtesy of Persues Book Group

Father is most impressed with the books I've been receiving lately, yet he is concerned about our crammed bookshelves. I'm contemplating what to do about this situation and like Marcia's Read it Forward, but I also like Staci's …

The Sunday Salon: Heather J - I dare to accept your challenge

This week's Sunday Salon is all about dares. I remember as a youngster playing truth or dare and daring my friends and the double dares we used to do. Minor, relatively, inane innocent fun back in the 60's. Today we have the book bloggers version of Dare. A new challenge is floating around the blogosphere - I Dare You To Accept This Challenge. The challenge is the brain child of Alea and Irish.

"Maybe your best friend only reads romances or maybe all he watches is sports. You think that she/he needs to branch out, but what can you do? Well, what did you do when you were younger? You dared people to do things that they might not normally do. So, why not dare your friend to read your 10 favorite books by Stephen King? Or maybe your 10 favorite episodes of The Big Bang Theory. Or perhaps your 10 favorite Bollywood films? Or what ever else comes to mind."

Heather J of Age 30+ A Lifetime of Books has posed a science fiction / fantasy dare:

I dare you to compl…

Pajaro Dunes - How we spent our vacation!

Pajaro Dunes

We have just returned from a fun filled week on the coast. We went to Pajaro Dunes which is a private beach community located between Monterey and Santa Cruz. We rented a beachfront condo and had fun in the sun, playing on the beach, whale watching, reading and relaxing. We celebrated our 12th anniversary and Father's 50th Birthday. Back in the 70's Father's family owned one of the condominiums and built House 55 so it was an walk down memory lane for him.

Pelican Point Condo # 20

Shot Father took of James on the balcony from the beach

The living room and our view

We had the most amazing time and most of the time we had the beach practically to ourselves. The first morning James and I got up and got to see dolphins and sea otters playing in the surf. They would actually ride the waves coming into shore.

The dunes is also a national Marine Sanctuary, so we saw tons of birds and we just had to go out and check them out. They were following schools of fis…

Time to pull the plug - metaphorically

Time to pull the plug

Allrighty, my chickadee's - Time to unplug, pack it up and hit the road. No blogs for the next few days - not even auto posts. Didn't have time to come up with anything. Behave yourselves and I'll catch you on the flip side.

Rubert Holmes

Pina Colada

I was tired of my lady
We'd been together too long
Like a worn-out recording
Of a favorite song
So while she lay there sleeping
I read the paper in bed
And in the personal columns
There was this letter I read

"If you like Pina Coladas
And getting caught in the rain
If you're not into yoga
If you have half a brain
If you'd like making love at midnight
In the dunes on the Cape
Then I'm the love that you've looked for
Write to me and escape."

I didn't think about my lady
I know that sounds kind of mean
But me and my old lady
Have fallen into the same old dull routine
So I wrote to the paper
Took out a personal ad
And though I'm nobody's poet
I thought it wasn't half bad

"Yes I lik…

Musing Mondays - to be series or not to series!

Rebecca of Just One More Page asks:

Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about book series…

Do you prefer to read stand-alone books, or books in series? Do you stick with a series the whole way through or stop after the first installment? Are there any particular series you enjoy?(question courtesy of Elena)
I would much rather read a series than a stand-alone book. I do read stand-alone's but when I get the warm fuzzies at the end of the story, feeling like I really got to know the characters and involved in the story, that's when I wish it had been the start of a series. But for some stories, all good things must come to an end.

Do I stick with a series the whole way through? Yes, IF, the first book really captured my attention.

I love series and have read a billion of them from J.D. Robb's (aka Nora Roberts) In Death Series to Nora's multiple romance series such as Chesapeake Bay or Macgregors. Then you have Elizabeth Lowell's The Donovan series to Roxa…

Sunday Salon -- It's our 12th Anniversary!!!

Good Afternoon Sunday Saloners. Today is our 12th Wedding Anniversary and the time has just flown by. It really doesn't seem like 12 years. The traditional gift for the 12th this year is silk or linen. We've had fun each year coming up with creative gifts and I'll just leave it up to your imagination what the silk gift will be. Father's 50th birthday is also coming up on Tuesday. I've always made it a point to keep the two celebrations separate and not combine gifts. This year we are going here:

We have rented a condo on the beach near Monterey and will be leaving tomorrow for 5 laid back, glorious days at the coast. We will be bringing this

to assist in our celebration of our life, wedding, Father's birthday, James graduation from 3rd grade, and whatever else we can think of to drink too. We had initially purchased the champagne to drink on New Year's Eve, but it had been shelved due to Father breaking his leg and being on pain medication…

Book Review # 122 - Water Witch by Deborah LeBlanc

Water Witch


Deborah LeBlanc

Back Cover: "Dunny knew from an early age what it meant to be an outsider. Her special abilities earned her many names, like freak and water witch. So she vowed to keep her powers a secret. But now her talents may be the only hope of two missing children. A young boy and girl have vanished, feared lost in the mysterious bayous of Louisiana. But they didn't just disappear; they were taken. And amid the ghosts and spirits of the swamp, there is a danger worse than any other, one with very special plans for the children--and for anyone who dares to interfere."
I have to say "Water Witch" captured me from the moment I started reading it. It is told from the first person perspective of Dunny. However, the rest of the character's thoughts are in 3rd person point of view including the demented kidnapper, the children and Poochie who is her brother in law's grandmother.

Olm's father has died and Olm tries to recreate an an…

I got an A!

Happy Dance, Happy Dance!

I got an


I got a 95 on my final which resulted in a A in my Modern Fiction course. I'm so glad I took this course, but it was truly a brain drain with all the writing that was required. I'm not complaining, otherwise would have never been exposed to the stream of consciousness styles of Virginia Woolf in "To the Lighthouse" or James Joyce's "Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man." Or reread Joseph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness." Nor would I have ever read the feminist poetry of Hilda Doolittle or Wilfred Owen's war poems. Or be introduced to the post modern author Don Delillo who wrote "White Noise." Now I can say I've read Virginia Woolf, I've read James Joyce. Did I like their stream of conciousness styles. Am I richer for it? Not necessarily, but wiser when it comes to modern literature.

I have one more lower level class left. The lower level course will be taking is Hist…

Libri Multus - #116 - 121

Just a few light books I read between the review books and some of the heavier, darker ones, I have a tendency to read.


Kill Zone by Vicki Hinze. (book 5 in War Games Series.) New to me author discovery. Writer of Paranormal suspense romance. Psychologist Morgan cabot heads a special military support team including Taylor Lee and Jazie Craig who have special abilities. They can hear, see and feel things that others can't. They are after a terrorist who uses body doubles not only for himself, but also doubles to infilitrate anyway at anytime. Do you really know the person sleeping next to you? Looking forward to reading more by Hinze.

Paradise Valley (Virgin River Series # 7) by Robyn Carr. Main story follows Rick and Lisa, the high school sweethearts introduced a few books back. Rick has returned from Iraq, injured and mad at the world. Will the twosome be able to survive this latest problem? Shady Brady is back and he's turned a new leaf so to speak and want…

Booking through Thursday - Recent Best

Today's Booking Through Thursday asks:

"What is the best book you've read recently?"

You would think asking what is the best book you've read recently is a simple question and there should be a simple answer. But I have to borrow from a famous or infamous (depending on your point of view) party and ask define "recently." Call me weird, but for grins I looked up the definition of recent:

Latelynot long past
of or belonging to a time not long past(geology) noting or pertaining to the present epoch, originating at the end of the glacial period, about 10,000 years ago, and forming the latter half of the Quaternary Period; Holocene.
Okie doke. The best book I've read in the not so distant past is the one I just finished "Water Witch," which I have not reviewed yet.

Something to look forward to. It was spooky, creepy, funny, and not one you want to read right before you go to bed or you won't be going to sleep. Deborah LeBlanc has found a…

Hugo Awards - The best in Science Fiction and Fantasy

Hugo Awards

These days there are awards for every different genre and category of book. The award for excellence in science fiction and fantasy is the Hugo Award. The awards were recently presented August 6th - 10th in Montreal. The 2009 Winner for the best novel is a book I'm sure most of us have heard of or read by now.

Neil Gaiman's - The Graveyard Book

His competition was Cory Doctorow's "Little Brother," Neal Stephenson's "Anathem," Charles Stross's "Saturn's Children," and John Scalzi's "Zoe's Tale." The only one I've read is Gaiman's so I have some catching up to do.

The very first Hugo awards were awarded in 1953 and the toastmaster was Isaac Asimov. The best novel award went to Alfred Bester for "The Demolished Man."

Ever heard of it? I haven't and it does sound really interesting so added it to my wish list. Surprisingly, even though I grew up on a diet of science fiction and fan…

Book Review # 115 - The Divorce Party by Laura Dave

The Divorce Party


Laura Dave

Back cover: "Gwyn Huntington knows how to throw a party. And Hunt Hall, her postcard perfect Victorian home in Montauk, is no stranger to celebrations. But on the morning of her thirty-fifth wedding anniversary, she's putting finishing touches on the last party she'll host there: A party to celebrate her divorce.

Just over one hundred miles away, Gwyn's future daughter in law, Maggie Mackenzie, sits on the floor of her Brooklyn apartment attempting to organize her new life. She's in love with a wonderful man, and today she is meeting his family for the first time.

The Divorce Party takes us into the lives of these two women at opposite ends of marriage. For all the differences between them -- distance, priviledge, age-- Gwyn and Maggie have one thing in common. Each has found herself at the crossroads, facing the same question: How hard should you work to stay with the person you love?"
When Anna of FSB Associates asked if I w…

Teaser Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

Grab your current readOpen to a random pageShare two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that pageBE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!(make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

I'm currently reading a supernatural thriller "Water Witch" by Deborah LeBlanc - (courtesy of Anna from FSB Associates).

"Why do you call out bingo letters and numbers?"

"Cause I like how dey sound. You know how when you go to de bingo hall and all de little balls is flyin' around in de machine? Den dat machine sucks out one of dem balls, and a man grabs dat ball, and he yells, B-Two!---N-thirty eight!--O-fifty two! I love when dat happens! It passes me de frissons a…

Meanderings on Monday mindfully meditating on the mundane

Meanderings on Monday mindfully meditating on the mundane

My monday version of Sunday Salon with a little bit of this and a little bit of that with a pinch of "Hey, who would have thunk it."

This weekend, we watched a couple shows we dvr'd during the week.
He's so cute! Don't you just want to pinch his cheek!

I love Eureka which is on the sci fi channel and have been watching from the first season. And I don't mind product placements in the middle of a show as long as they're done tastefully such as Jo's marvelous new police car, but what bugs the heck out of me is.... What the heck is with changing the name of the channel to "SyFy." Their explanation:

“The name Sci Fi has been associated with geeks and dysfunctional, antisocial boys in their basements with video games and stuff like that, as opposed to the general public and the female audience in particular,” said TV historian Tim Brooks, who helped launch Sci Fi Channel when he worked at US…

Book Review # 114 Boneman's Daughter by Ted Dekker

Boneman's Daughter


Ted Dekker

Front Flap: "Would you kill an innocent man to save your daughter?"

They call him BoneMan, a serial killer who's abducted six young women. He's the perfect father looking for the perfect daughter, and when his victims fail to meet his lofty expectations, he kills them by breaking their bones and leaving them to die. Intelligence officer Ryan Evans, on the other hand, has lost all hope of ever being the perfect father. His daughter and wife have written him out of their lives.

Everything changes when BoneMan takes Ryan's estranged daughter, Bethany, as his seventh victim. Ryan goes after BoneMan on his own. But the FBI see it differently. New evidence points to the suspicios that Ryan is BoneMan. Now the hunter is the hunted, and in the end, only one father will stand."

As everyone knows, Ted Dekker is one of my favorite writers. His thrillers are all well writen, unique and some can be very chilling and creepy.…

I am an appreciator!

I Am an Appreciator!

Say what?

I rarely talk about work but yesterday was an odd day at the shop. Every single one of our customers and non customers who walked through the door were very wired. One was concerned I was going to scratch up his stereo with my lego watch. Yes, I wear my son's lego watch to work and most of the time it prompts interesting questions. I assured him it wouldn't.

Another walked in and saw our complaint department plaque on the wall and with a worried look "Well, I can see I better not complain," then proceeded to complain about this, that and the other thing and talked himself out of leaving his unit for repair with hardly a word from me.

Holy hand grenade Batman!

The topper on the day. I'm on the phone and a young african american gentleman walks through the door. His baseball cap slanted to the side, the droopy pants and maybe this is a new style - his shirt half on with only one arm through a sleeve. He gives me this beautifu…

Book Review # 113 - Blood Dreams by Kay Hooper

Blood Dreams


Kay Hooper

Back Cover: "Dani Justice knows all about monsters. They haunt her dreams--and her life. But she never expected to find herself on the trail of a real flesh and blood predator so cunning, he's eluded the best law enforcement could send against him; so deadly, he doesn't hesitate to kill even a senator's daughter. Or a cop. Dani doesn't want to hunt this killer. But she doesn't have a choice. She alone commands a weapon powerful enough to stop him. And she knows something even Bishop of the FBI's Special Crimes Unit doesn't know. Dani knows how the hunt ends. It ends in fire. And Blood. And death. What she doesn't know is who will survive."

I picked this book up as part of the Take A Chance Challenge hosted by Jenners. #1 of the challenge is random book selection in which you choose a section in the library or in my bookstore, following predetermined directions such as 3rd shelf over, 4 shelf down, 10 book ov…

Work In Progress Wednesday

I'm happy to say I'm making progress with WIP1 - Floating on the Surface and have finished typing up everything written so far. It gave me a better idea of where I was in the story, which helped unstick whatever was stuck and I was able to get back to working on the story this morning.

Nifty Word Meter

I'm currently on Chapter 17 and have written 21,567 words. My plan is to write in the mornings and type it up in the afternoon. I spent some time this morning thinking about changing the title and will most likely have to wait until the story is finished. I came up with some alternatives:

"Touch of Ashes"

"Silent Shards"

"Splintered Memories"

"Souls Tears"

"Fallen Dreamer"

What do you think?

Today Jody of On the Path has a wonderful post about making time to write and she asks "do you need more writing time? Or do you need to make better use of the time you already have."

I definitely need to make better use of the…