Thursday, July 29, 2010

Giveaway: Sizzling Sixteen by Janet Evanovich

Sizzling Sixteen (Stephanie Plum)

I borrowed this book from a friend and she has told me to pass it on to someone else.  So, if you would like to read the newest book in Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series, just leave me a comment and an email where I can reach you.

I will leave this open until Thursday, August 5th. 

Check out my review here.


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Book Review: Sizzling Sixteen by Janet Evanovich

Sizzling Sixteen (Stephanie Plum)After reading the last two books in the Stephanie Plum Series and being very disappointed, I had said that I was not going to read anymore of them. Well, I read the newest, Sizzling Sixteen, yesterday despite what I said. It is hard to say no to a book that came all the way from Austin in the hands of a friend especially to loan it to you. Well, I read and I am glad I did because it was so much better than the previous two books. I was pleasantly surprised to find myself actually laugh out loud a couple times and be interested in what was going to happen to Vincent Plum.

So, in this 16th installment, Stephanie must rescue her cousin and boss, Vincent Plum from his bookie who has kidnapped him and is holding for ransom. Sounds easy enough, but when her help comes from Lula and Connie and some other familiar faces, you know there will be some mayhem and a destroyed car or two.

Fun, fast read. Lots of Lula laughs and Grandma Mazur high jinks. Still waiting for something to come of the whole triangle with Morelli and Ranger, but have a feeling I shouldn't hold my breath.


Source: borrowed


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Late to the Party

Have you read The Hunger Games? Catching Fire

Most likely you have, but I have just gotten my hands on these books and I am completely enthralled by Suzanne Collins' characters and world. How have I not read these before this week? I am so late to the party. At least I am right on time for the release of the third and final book next month. Perhaps it's a good thing I have waited so long, now I don't have to wait a long time between books.

I went to the bookstore earlier this week and found a used copy of The Hunger Games for $5. With all the hype, I couldn't pass that up. I am so glad I didn't. I read it all in a night. Today I went back and got Catching Fire. I couldn't wait any longer than a couple days. I tried. I even started another book. It will just have to wait now.  I have already started Catching Fire and will probably read it all night.

       The Hunger Games     Catching Fire (The Second Book of the Hunger Games)

Anyway, those are the books that came into my house this week. What did you get? 

Mailbox Monday is hosted by Marcia of The Printed Page

Next month, The Mailbox MondayBlog Tour will be hosted by Chick Loves Lit.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Book Review- Inside Out by Barry Eisler

Inside Out: A Novel
I was introduced to Barry Eisler's books when I received a copy of Fault Line through Library Thing's Early Reviewers Program. My husband and his family have known about Eisler for awhile since he lives in the same town as them and have also read all the his John Rain books. Anyway, I enjoyed Fault Line and was thrilled to get a copy of Inside Out for review.

Inside Out begins not too long after the end of the events in Fault Line.  Ben Treven is a bit down and out and has found himself in a Manilla jail. The man who tried to have him killed in the last book is back but this time to ask for his help. 

Another agent, thought to be dead, has tapes that document the US governments use of torture during the War on Terror and is holding them for ransom. It is Ben's job to try and get the tapes before they can be released to the public as other agencies try to get their hands on the tapes as well.

The plot is complex, the action is non stop and it is relevant to what is going on in the world today. Scary, but true. What is needed to keep the American public safe? Do we need to know the truth about what the government is doing or should we just be happy in the fact that we are "safe"? All questions that come up in the book and fuel an interesting ending.

I enjoyed the book, just not as much as Fault Line. I think what I enjoyed most about that one was the sibling interactions and that was definitely missing from this book with Alex barely getting mentioned. I am hoping that he will make another appearance in later stories. He is my favorite of the two brothers.

Inside Out did get me thinking, though, and definitely kept me entertained. It has also got me excited to see what happens in the next book if two of Eisler's characters come together. Treven and Rain. That will make for quite an exciting read.

Inside Out was released on June 29, 2010.


Source: author/publisher

Monday, July 19, 2010

Book Sharing Amongst Friends

I had some friends in town visiting this past week and what did they bring me? Books! Ones I have been wanting to read and some surprise extras. We love sharing books with each other and being all the way in CA now isn't going to stop us. It will just cost us shipping now. :)

Sizzling Sixteen by Janet Evanovich
Sizzling Sixteen (Stephanie Plum)

The Girl Who Played With Fire Stieg Larrson
The Girl Who Played with Fire (Vintage)

Basket Case by Carl Hiaasen
Basket Case

The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner by Stephenie Meyer (review)
The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella (Twilight Saga)

I also made a trip to Borders and purchased a book that I had been waiting patiently to come out in paperback.

The Awakening by Kelley Armstrong
The Awakening (Darkest Powers)

Mailbox Monday is hosted by Marcia of The Printed Page


The Lotus Eaters Giveaway Recipient Is...

vvb32 Reads

Congrats!  (and sorry for the delay)

Enjoy your copy of The Lotus Eaters.

 The Lotus Eaters: A Novel

Please email me your shipping address to marireadsATyahooDOTcom.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Book Review- The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner by Stephenie Meyer

The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella (Twilight Saga)I read this a few days before seeing the movie, Eclipse, and a couple years since last reading the book. I honestly didn't remember the character. I hadn't planned on reading this novella until a friend lent it to me. It took all of 2-3 hours to read and was definitely not a difficult read. It was somewhat entertaining, only lagging a bit at the beginning. I  did became interested in her accounts of the days in Seattle leading up to the big fight in Forks and her relationship with Diego. 

So, simply put, if you enjoyed the Twilight books, you will enjoy getting another point of view to part of the story. If you are not a fan, stay away. It will probably bore you.


Source: borrowed

Friday, July 9, 2010

Friends in town

Friends are in town this weekend and beginning of next week so my tdfkal project will be on the back burner until Wednesday. There are sights to be seen and day trips to be made, also some sock knitting lessons to be done. Busy, busy. When will I ever find time to watch the Tour, let alone knit anything?
I am excited to have my friends here, though. It has been 3 weeks since we left Austin and last saw them. :)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Tour de France 2010, Stage 3

Stage 3: Wanze- Arenburg Porte du Hainault

The Cobblestones. It's amazing to see what damage they can do. Leipheimer, Kloden and Armstrong all had popped wheels due to them. Armstrong ended up losing his 5th place overall and is now almost a minute back of Contador. They were the lucky ones, though. Poor Franck Shleck fell and broke his shoulder. It will require some surgery so he is definitely out of the Tour. Andy had a great day, however, as did Cadel Evans and Alberto Contador all moving up to the head of the GC.
Only the fourth day and already an interesting change to the GC. Exciting Tour this year.

As for my KAL project, Helena is coming along well. Loving the pattern in the skirt. Very thankful it is an easy lace pattern to follow making it a perfect for Tour watching. I have completed two rounds of the pattern so far. Three or four more to go.

Giveaway: The Lotus Eaters by Tatjana Soli

We are moving into a place with a lot less room for keeping all the books I read so I will be passing along a lot of the books that I read to some of you. I am sure you don't mind. We just can't have our SF condo stuffed to the rafters with books...well, we could but I don't really want to. Need to have room for baby. Anyway...

First up...

The Lotus Eaters: A NovelThe Lotus Eaters by Tatjana Soli

See my review here and/or click on book title to see product description. If you are interested in getting my hardcover copy please leave me a comment and an email address before Thursday, July 15th, 12:00am PST. Open internationally. 



Review: The Lotus Eaters by Tatjana Soli

The Lotus Eaters: A NovelHelen Adams is a photojournalist who has dropped everything to go to Vietnam and photograph the war. Her 12 years of living, working and surviving in the war-torn country are replayed as she and her Vietnamese lover attempt to leave.

I went into this book not knowing all that much about the Vietnam War. I had a lot of questions for the hubby and am actually quite interested in learning more. Any book recommendations are welcome.

The Lotus Eaters is described as a love story and that is exactly what it is. However, I feel it is Helen's love affair with the country that drives the story. She is unable to pull herself away from her life there. She throws herself into the country and all it has to offer. She misses the smells, the taste and sounds when she is away and hurries to return more so than to any person she meets or loves in the story.

Soli's descriptions of the countryside and horrors of war show the contrast of beauty and devastation that only war can cause. Her characters were believable and interesting to follow around in their pursuit of the perfect photo. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys good historical fiction. No knowledge of the Vietnam War is needed, but you will want more after finishing this book.


Source: Library Thing Early Readers Program

* I am giving away my copy of this book here.


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Tour de France 2010- Stage 2

Stage 2: Brussels-Spa

A hilly and what turned out to be a treacherous course filled with numerous crashes. An interesting end to the day as riders seemed to slow down and cross the finish line as a sort of protest to the dangerous conditions. Interested to hear the reasoning behind it.

Anyway, My knitting is coming along nicely despite a slight crash before (frogging). The bodice was completed. Look at how adorable this is coming out!

Tuesday's Stage (I am getting behind!): Wanze- Arenburg Porte du Hainault (Haven't seen it yet but so hard not to get updates on the stage)

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Sunday Salon: Happy 4th of July

Happy 4th of July!

Hope everyone in the US is having a nice holiday. 

The 4th, in my family means that The Tour de France has begun. Woohoo. I must warn you all - my attention for the next three weeks will be on that. And since I am participating in a Knit Along for it most of my blogging will be on my knitting blog, mariknits

I have finished reading The Lotus Eaters by Tatjana Soli so be expecting a review of it soon. Next book on the nightstand to read is Barry Eisler's new novel,  Inside Out. I should have that one read pretty quickly. His books are hard to put down. 

June wasn't all that great in number of books read, only two! They were fun ones, though. :)

28. Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy by Ally Carter (review)
27. I'd Tell You I Love You But Then I'd Have to Kill You by Ally Carter (review)

Here's to a better reading month in July!

(I have turned off Word Verification again hoping to get some back some comments. Really hoping the spammers stay away.)


2010 Tour de France- Stage 1

Stage 1: Rotterdam to Brussels

Not in France yet, but getting there. Route was flat and set up for a sprint finish. What a crazy last 10km! Crashes upon crashes. Wow. Alessandro Petacchi wins the stage, lucky to not have gotten caught up in the falls as did Cavendish, Farrar and Friere.

My knitting wasn't going well either. One row took me over an hour due to noticing a mistake in the increase row that I did at the very beginning and having to tink all the way back. Then again half way through my second try! I guess I was a bit caught up in the tour coverage this morning.

Tomorrow's stage: Brussels-Spa

Saturday, July 3, 2010

2010 Tour de France- Prologue

Le Tour de France started today in Rotterdam with the Prologue. Fabian Cancellara rode away with the win as only the World Champion Time Trialist could. Tony Martin put up a great time early in the day that was the time to beat for quite a while. It was good enough to keep him in second.

For this year's KAL (on Ravelry), I am on Team Radioshack. Yay! Lance did great to come in 4th (ahead of Contador, who is in 6th). Woohoo. Levi is also in the top 10 with a good finish.

I started off pretty good today, too. I may actually finish my project way ahead of schedule. It is knitting up quicker than expected. I cast on Helena by Allison Green Will using Knit Picks Shine Sport in Orchid and knitting the 6mos size.  So far so good. Here's a peek:

Thursday, July 1, 2010

HP and The Deathly Hollows Trailer

I cannot wait!! Opening night, I must be there. I will need a babysitter! :)