Friday, December 31, 2010

Bookish Resolutions


I've noticed that plenty of bloggers have put these lists up about what they plan on doing for the new year. So after much pondering, here are my 2011 Reading and/or Things Bookish Resolutions!

  1. Post everyday! I haven't been good about this at all. I know that it makes my blog look stale and abandoned, so I will get on the ball and try to make sure new content is up at least everyday (barring of course a lack of things for which to say!)
  2. Less ads. Yup, my family went through a very difficult time in 2010 and I had to make some money somehow. I used my blog like a dirty whore and that will stop this year. IF I ever post another ad it will be something related to books. End of story. I have a new job that I make pretty decent money on so we aren't in dire need now.
  3. Reviews! More of them shall be written and posted! I will strive for at least two a week.
  4. Contests! I love them! I will do more of them! :)
  5. Weekly Memes. I'm on the fence about this. On one hand, they help with that posting content everyday thing and on the other they seem rather lazyish. I might just pick one or two and commit to those per week.
So there be my resolutions for my blog. I hope you enjoyed reading them!

Oh and by the way:
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!


Out With a Bang: Read a Thon-Day Three



So basically I'm failing at this read-a-thon. :( I had so many distractions yesterday and work., that I just didn't get much read. I'm still slowly plodding my way through World War Z. It's not bad at all, but yesterday my brain just wasn't into it.
Today I have the day off and I used late last night to do some cleaning, to calm down a bit. (Hey! Cleaning makes me relax?!)
So I'll have plenty of time to read and get things situated. :)

Challenges:
December 31
Reading Teen
A Writer's Revie

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Out With a Bang: Read a Thon-Day Two


Yesterday didn't go as well as I had hoped. I had to work, of course, and having little man at home with me all day is not conducive to tons of quiet time! Today it's a bit calmer and I don't have much work on the schedule so I will get more reading in!

I'm aiming for about 5-6 reading hours! Oh and I will start to chart them here! Wish me luck!

Oh and don't forget the mini-challenges that are going on today!

December 30


Check-In #1-Good grief I didn't get anywhere near the 5-6 hours of reading time. I had quite a stressful day, but I am staying up a little later than usual to read some :) Hopefully I'll top out at 2-3 hours for the end of the day! :)

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Winners of the GET ENERGY! Giveaway:



I have winners! The 3 Winners of my Denise Austin, GET ENERGY! Giveaway are:

Baby Mama said...

GFC sarah_roxy_21
sarahlovesvegas@hotmail


Charity said...

Tweeted #2
http://twitter.com/kingsdaughter24/status/19968800791207936

esterried[at]yahoo[dot]com

Jenna Z said...

I follow you on twitter (corgipants)

I will be emailing you shortly for your addresses! Congrats and have fun getting all energetic with this awesome book!

Out With a Bang: Read a Thon



Yay! Today is the start of the Out With A Bang Read-a-thon! Click the button above to join up! It's not too late!

I've got my list of books that I wanna rip through and finish up in time to count for the 2010 tally!

  1. Leviathan
  2. The Radleys
  3. Vixen
  4. Word War Z (nookbook)
There! I doubt I will have enough stamina to make it through ALL of those but I will give it my best shot! I'm soooooooooo looking forward to 2011! Books Ahoy!

Oh and these fine blogs are hosting challenges today! Check em out!
December 29

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Just a Poll

Which Book Should Be the 1st Read of 2011?


View Results
Create a Blog Poll

I am having a problem deciding on my first book of 2011. Maybe you guys can help me out?

Quickie Review: Part 2

Well let's see I have added two more to my pile of 2010 books! Yay for me! I finished up one and gobbled another one down!

So here I go making quick with the reviews!

First up for the win:
This is the one that I gobbled up completely! I read it on my Nook (first book finished on it btw!) and LOVED it! I have to say I'm a sucker for Zombies, but I'm kind of particular about them. I like it when writer's make them terrifying AND sympathetic so it tugs at my emotions a bit while I read. Zombies used to be people! They just got unlucky and got infected. Now there is a fine line to thinking this way, they can't be all "sparkly" they still need to want to nom on your brains, but the non-infected shouldn't be all "pew pew pew I are kill all the zombehs!" See..I'm particular. This book walked that very fine line and left me with a full belly of good story! This one is right up there with my other favorites for this year! So basically this is a Read it! Read it! Recommendation! :)

Next up, the not too awesome (for me):

This could potentially be a tainted review. I have watched the shows and NEVER opened up a book in the series that launched the show. I love the show to bits! So I was hoping that I'd love the book just as much. Not so much as I found out. :( I can see that these are definitely targeted towards the younger crowd and the show kinda walks that thin line between. The stories would have had me riveted when I was younger, but not so much today. I dragged along trying to finish it. I'm not saying it was horrible because it wasn't, it just wasn't all that wonderful either. I love the show's sense of humor.

Okay okay, I'll just flat out say it..I love Damon. He's just delicious and awesome with his sexy crazy eyes, and you don't get sexy crazy eyes out of a book. He's crazy but he's just mean in the books. So yeah..about the only good thing that I found in the books is I didn't totally hate Stefan. I totally hate Stefan in the show. Yup, this is a completely unbiased review...


So there...One great review and one not so stellar review. Also, leaving you with this:

Monday, December 27, 2010

What Are You Reading Monday?


Well last week was fun! I had a great Christmas! I got my nook, a gift card to Walmart, and some lovely photo albums! My son completely racked up! He's a happy little man now. I am not going to list any books this week. I'll save the list for the Out With a Bang read-a-thon at the end of this week!

This week, up until that point, will be just finishing up unfinished books.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Merry Christmas

Must Read Faster is going to be "closed" from today (12/23) to (12/27) for the holidays. I hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas and I cannot wait to ring in the new year by reading with you all! Happy Holidays and Good Reading!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Quickie Reviews

First up, The Distant Hours by Kate Morton. This is a HUGE book. I had to take it on in sections! This does not mean that there is anything suckish about this book! I really enjoyed it! The story is engaging and complex. There are so many THINGS going on in this book! Really, I recommend it. It's made me definitely interested in reading more by Madame Morton! Click the book to get the blurb from Goodreads! I gave this a 4/5 rating. The length is a challenge but definitely worth the effort!

This is a book that I picked up to read a long with a book group. Joe Hill is Stephen King's son and you can definitely tell that writing runs in the family. Occasionally I was reminded to King's work. I tried to "forget" that this was written by his son. I failed. I couldn't help it. The writing is very solid. The story was creepy and I did like it. I just didn't get the BEEP scared out of me. Now on that note, I will say it is pretty darn creepy at times. I will pick up more by Hill. He knows how to put a good story on paper. So with that said, I'll give this a 3.5/5 rating. The story was creepy but not crap your pants scary. The ending felt a bit too tidy..if that makes sense? Everything fit perfectly and that's not what you want out of a horror novel.


Last but not least we have, Feed by Mira Grant! I love zombies and I love blogging. This book combines them both! What more could you want? I loved how this was both a zombie book AND a political thriller in one. It definitely held my interest and kept me flipping the pages. I was not at all disappointed in this book! Each character was well written, and had multiple layers. It was amusing that in their future, George Romero is hailed as somewhat of a hero for giving the guidelines for surviving a zombie Apocalypse. This is the first of the NewFlesh series, and I cannot wait to get my paws on the next one! I give this a 4.5/5.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Denise Austin's GET ENERGY! Review and Giveaway!

With busy schedules, demanding careers, and little time, many of us battle just to stay awake. But energy is something that is in our control, even when time is short. Now 50 years young, fitness guru Denise Austin shows readers how to super-charge their lives, using her innovative lifestyle plan. She eats the right foods at the right time of day. She uses the power of stretching and breathing to feed her body with energy-enhancing oxygen. She uses mini-workouts to get energy even on her busiest days--and now you can too!

Denise shows how simple changes can add up to increased energy levels throughout the day. From the foods they consume to the way they sit in their chairs, readers won't believe how Denise's quick and easy plan will dramatically increase their energy levels. In as little as a week, results will be felt: radiant skin, more restful sleep, and a sharper mind...so follow Denise Austin and prepare for a fitness wake-up call!

Find Denise Austin on:

DeniseAustin.com
Facebook
Twitter

Also, you can download the FREE iPhone App.

My Thoughts:
I am always ALWAYS tired. This book appealed to me because I know that some of my habits aren't very healthy and are probably..okay definitely not helping me feel more energetic in the long run. I rely very heavily on caffeine.

For example, yesterday my coffee maker died. All heck broke loose. I drove..very erratically..to the Dollar Store down the road to get a temporary machine. They didn't have a SINGLE ONE! I was grouchy, headachey, and just plain acting like a nightmare. That is not healthy at all!

This is why I like this book. It give tons of good advice on how to get energized the healthy way. Denise Austin gives good advice usually and she does not fail in this book. I've been trying to incorporate the stretches, eating tips, and trying to get to bed earlier (This last bit is SOOO hard in this house!) Each day I take a little break and stretch. It's been a good energy booster.

I may never give up my coffee, I love it too much; but I do think I will use the tips found in GET ENERGY! to help me when my energy levels dip too low!

Good News! Three (3) Copies of this book can be won! Yup! I'm giving them away! Wanna Get your hands on some energy? Here's How!
  1. 1 entry (EACH) for being a follower GFC, twitter (@lexley) -leave follower ID
  2. Blog about it-5 entries (please leave link)
  3. Tweet about it (please include @lexley and leave the link) 2 entries
  4. Take My Button (post link to where I can find it) 3 entries
That's all! Easy! Please leave a comment for each separate entry. (Example-5 entries =5 comments)

Fine Print:
-Only residents of the U.S. or Canada are eligible to win
-No P.O. Boxes, please.
-Only one book will be shipped per household. If you win this book on another site you will only receive one copy.
-Contest STARTS Dec. 21 and ENDS Dec. 28


Monday, December 20, 2010

What Are You Reading Monday?

Well last week I feel was a success! I got the books I wanted to read, finished! :) Yay! This week I have a lighter work schedule (thank you mr. holidays!) but still it feels like a short week. So I will just plan on one book being read and one finished (the vampire diaries.)



I have a few books on my Nook that I'd like to read as well, but I'm not going to stress over them.

I will be reviewing, updating challenges, working on getting the 2011 Challenges that I've joined posted, and basically trying to get my butt into gear for next year! :) Oh yeah and CHRISTMAS is COMING!!!

What about you?

Friday, December 17, 2010

Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge 2011

Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge

Details:

  • Runs January 1, 2011 through December 31, 2011 (books read prior to 1/1/11 do not count towards the challenge). You can join at anytime. You can sign up on The Book Vixen’s blog.
  • The goal is to outdo yourself by reading more books in 2011 than you did in 2010. See the different levels below and pick the one that works best for you. Nothing is set in stone; you can change levels at any time during the challenge.
  • Books can be any format (bound, eBook, audio).
  • Re-reads and crossovers from other reading challenges are fine.
  • You can list your books in advance or list them as you read them. It is not required that you review the books you read for this challenge but feel free to do so.
  • Post this reading challenge on your blog so you can keep a list of the books you’ve read for this challenge. Please include a link back to this post so readers can join the challenge too.
  • You do not have to be a book blogger to participate. You can keep tabs on books you’ve read for this challenge on Goodreads or LibraryThing if you’d like (maybe make a shelf for “Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge”). If you are not on either of those sites then you can list the books you read for this challenge in the comments on my wrap-up post, which will be up at the end of 2011.


Levels:

Getting my heart rate up – Read 1–5 more books
Out of breath – Read 6–10 more books
Breaking a sweat – Read 11–15 more books
I’m on fire! – Read 16+ more books

I will try for the I'm On Fire level!

Mystery & Suspense Reading Challenge 2011



So I'm trying to do Challenges for this upcoming year! I was going to take it easy but THIS one kinda called to me! I have noticed my blog and my reading tastes, have leaned towards YA and Horror. Nothing wrong with those genres but I want to try to diversify. So I am signing up for this one!

Details:
  • Timeline: 01 Jan 2011 - 31 Dec 2011
  • Rules: To read TWELVE (12) mystery & suspense novels in 2011 (12 is the minimum but you can read more if you wish!)
  • You don't have to select your books ahead of time, you can just add them as you go. Also if you do list them upfront you can change them, nothing is set in stone! The books you choose can crossover into other challenges you have on the go.
  • You can join anytime between now and the later part of next year.
  • At the beginning of Jan 2011, you will find a link to specific month to add your reviews. There will be a monthly prize too courtesy of the lovely Simon & Schuster - you must be signed up to the challenge and add the link to your review to be entered into the monthly prize draw.
If you want to join, click the button above ^ or click the button ---> on my sidebar!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Angelfire Tour

This debut, the first novel in a trilogy, is achingly romantic, terrifying, and filled with blistering action.

When seventeen-year-old Ellie starts seeing reapers - monstrous creatures who devour humans and send their souls to Hell - she finds herself on the front lines of a supernatural war between archangels and the Fallen and faced with the possible destruction of her soul.

A mysterious boy named Will reveals she is the reincarnation of an ancient warrior, the only one capable of wielding swords of angelfire to fight the reapers, and he is an immortal sworn to protect her in battle. Now that Ellie's powers have been awakened, a powerful reaper called Bastian has come forward to challenge her. He has employed a fierce assassin to eliminate her - an assassin who has already killed her once.

While balancing her dwindling social life and reaper-hunting duties, she and Will discover Bastian is searching for a dormant creature believed to be a true soul reaper. Bastian plans to use this weapon to ignite the End of Days and to destroy Ellie's soul, ending her rebirth cycle forever. Now, she must face an army of Bastian's most frightening reapers, prevent the soul reaper from consuming her soul, and uncover the secrets of her past lives - including truths that may be too frightening to remember.

My Review:

So this is the first in what promises to be a very good series, this first novel was great! That said it did have a few problems. I had a little problem getting into it at first, but I blame it on getting all the introductions and "game rules" laid out for the reader. I pushed past all this and found myself moving through this novel at a steady clip.

I really think that this has the potential to be a great series! This book is really entertaining and kept me going. I enjoyed the interactions between Ellie and Will. I REALLY wanted to know more about him! He will make for a very intriguing storyline! He seems like a tragic hero.

Ellie's character comes across as a bit selfish. She's been shown her mission, been told what she is to do, but still tries to do what she wants. I can understand that she's been thrown into something she wasn't aware of but once her memories come back, she should ..I don't know.. deal? I guess this might be addressed in the next book? I hope so!

This is definitely one to pick up and read! I enjoyed it even with those minor issues!


Angelfire is scheduled to release on February 15, 2011!!

This book was provided for me to review from:


Sunday, December 12, 2010

What Are You Reading Monday?


Welp, I had a crappy reading week last week. I LOVED all the books I received, but I didn't read as much as I'd like Soooo....What am I going to do this week?

Read my booty off! Literally! I think I'll use books to help me loose some weight lol If I feel like snacking, I think what I'll do is read for 10 minutes and see if the urge goes away. Usually, I'm just bored and turn to snacking, which makes my thighs huge! Boo!

So what's on my list for this week?
  • Angelfire-for the Around the World ARC Tour. I have to have this done and out by the 17th so that's at the tippity top of my list!
  • Feed-Awesome sauce so far! I love Zombies!
  • Heart Shaped Box-Reading this for a Livejournal group called Calling All Creepies :)
I probably will get finished with Angelfire and Feed (because I've already started on both) but I might only get halfway through HSB.

Also I am reading A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens for the Read-a-Long hosted by The Lost Entwife. This one is on my Nook so I'll read it in bits and pieces.

I will post my review of the Distant Hours sometime this week, so look for it! :)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Out With a Bang: Read a Thon



This one goes from December 29th to the 31st! This Readathon is mainly to finish off the fabulous debuts for the Debut Author Challenge, but participants don't have to focus on that category if they have non-debut books that they would like to finish before 2010 ends.

I'm not participating in that challenge, but I loved the idea of reading as many books as I can to finish up the year! :) Goooo Motivation!

Here is the schedule for a TON of mini-challenges! Yay!

December 29


December 30


December 31

Sooo if you wanna join in the reading fun, click the button at the top and sign up!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Book Arrivals

These are the books that have made their way into my home within the last week or so! I've been sooo super excited this week! :)



Isn't that a good haul? See why I was such a HAPPY BOOK NERD this last week and a half?!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Christmas Came Early!!


Yup! My sweetheart got me a Nook for Christmas! Being the geeky wonder than I am I couldn't just wrap it up and put it under the tree and wait...Yeah Right! So woot!

Now I can enjoy all those ebooks AND my beautiful bound copies! I love the Nook but to me it will never ever replace the printed page.

To quote an episode of Buffy:

Miss Calendar: "Well, I think you'll be very happy here, with your musty old
books."
Giles: "These musty old books have a great deal more to say than any of your
fabulous web pages."
"I, Robot--You, Jane"

You tell 'em Giles baby! Books are better but I can definitely see the advantage to having a Nook as well!

Okay one last geeky SQUEEEEE! :)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

2011 Challenges

I'm seriously thinking about what challenges I might want to try. I've not had much luck this year with them so I'm pretty cautious. Should I or shouldn't I?

I know I want to keep those chunksters that I haven't read this year, so that list will roll over.

I probably won't make it to 100 books read this year, but I'm probably going to try for that again.

I do like this one though.



I do love me some Stephen King! So that's definitely one I'm gonna probably join in.

I'm still not sure if this is it for me. I may add to this before the year is up! :)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Music Monday


I have been loving this video and song for a few days now. I love the pairing of Elena and Damon, so this is just perfection! I am also reading the books and LOVING the show! :)

What music are you listening to lately?

PS-Yes, I know I'm veering into Fangirl territory for this, but I just couldn't help it!

What Are You Reading Monday?


Well last week was a success! I finished If I Stay and loved it! Review is HERE You guys that book still gets me teary eyed, just thinking about it! :)

So yeah, felt so awesome and productive..until the weekend. I bombed out on the read-a-thon! I tried. I really did. I don't know why but I just didn't have any "read" left in me. *sigh*

So I'm going to do what I did last week. Just appoint ONE book to read then see what happens. This is tough though. Lemme tell you why...

My Book Lover's Book Swap Santa gave me a book I've been DYING (in agony) to read. Feed by Mira Grant. I super muchly want to read it..like NOW but I have a few ARCS that I feel I should read now.

So after some thought, here is my plan for this week:

  • Blood Prophecy by Stefan Petrucha
  • Feed by Mira Grant (YAY)
  • The Radleys by Matt Haig

There that's what I want to finish by this weekend! :) Seem like a lot, but these are all pretty interesting sounding books so I don't think I'll be bored or stall! Crossing my fingers though! :)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Thank You! :)




My mail carrier just rang my doorbell and gave me a box. I was confused as I hadn't ordered anything big enough for a box, but what did I find when I opened it?

My Secret Santa's gift! I squealed in happiness as I wasn't expecting it so soon!

Yay!

I am sorry I could not practice self control and had to open it! :) I wished I had a camera so I could take pictures as it's all awesome goodies!

My Secret Santa is Rob from Books are like Candy Corn! Thank you Rob :) You have made my day!

He packed the box with awesome goodies from Hawaii!

  • A cute card :)
  • A delicious (again lack of self control) bag of Macadamia Popcorn Crunch. My son and I are nomming on this right now :)
  • A baggie of Kauai Coffee that I am just dying to brew up!
  • A make your own snow globe kit! This is so cute!
  • A Hawaii Holiday cd
  • A baggie of Papaya Seed Dressing mix (sounds so yummy!)
  • and last but not least a copy of Feed by Mira Grant! :)

As you can see there are a LOT of smilies in this post! I LOVED it Rob! Thank you very much! Merry Christmas to you!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Yay! Another One!

Photobucket

WhoRuBlog is hosting this read-a-thon that starts today and goes on til Sunday! Woot! So here I am again...signed up for a read-a-thon! I've got a stack of books that I'd LIKE to get read! Here they be:
  1. The Vampire Diaries-The Awakening and the Struggle (one book)
  2. Orphans of Chaos-John C. Wright
  3. Finish (yes I'm still on this lol) The Distant Hours
  4. Finish-Leviathan
There that should do i! I may shove some more in there or switch it up but for now this is my list!

NOTE: WhoRuBlog is asking (not requiring) that if you do sign up for this read-a-thon, please donate somewhere, somehow this year. Toys for Tots, a few books, money, etc. Whatever you can do is fine!

Personally, I will be donating a few toys to Toys for Tots and some canned goods to my son's school. They are having a holiday drive sometime soon.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Review: Thunder and Ashes


About the Book:
A lot can change in three months: wars can be decided, nations can be forged... or entire species can be brought to the brink of annihilation. The Morningstar Virus, an incredibly virulent disease, has swept the face of the planet, infecting billions. Its hosts rampage, attacking anything that remains uninfected. Even death can't stop the virus-its victims as cannibalistic shamblers. Scattered across the world, embattled groups have persevered. For some, surviving is the pinnacle of achievement. Others hoard goods and weapons. And still others leverage power over the remnants of humanity in the form of a mysterious cure for Morningstar. Francis Sherman and Anna Demilio want only a vaccine, but to find it, they must cross a countryside in ruins, dodging not only the infected, but also the lawless living. The bulk of the storm has passed over the world, leaving echoing thunder and softly drifting ashes. But for the survivors, the peril remains, and the search for a cure is just beginning...

My Review:

What is it about Zombies that makes me a happy girl? Hmm..I just love to imagine myself kicking A and taking names during the Zombie Apocalypse! Seriously, I have spent many an hour daydreaming and making a check list..just in case. You never know, right?

This book is the second part of The Morningstar Strain series, but that didn't keep me from following the story. I haven't read the first one, but I do plan on getting it. ASAP. Yes, there are similarities to other zombie books and movies, but hullo? You can't have too many zombie books or movies! I liked this one very much. The action was well written, the characters were decent. I didn't stumble upon a single thing that made me say, "oh now that ain't right..."

I definitely think this is a good addition to any Zombie fans arsenal of awesome literature!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Review: If I Stay

Omg, you guys! This book, my cheeks they still be moist with the salty tears of sadness! This book is simply ah-mazing. I cannot begin to describe it. I cannot remember the last book I devoured in one day! I am kind of free writing this right now, as I have literally just put it down.

I was completely swept up in this story. My soul ached for her, her parents, and brother. The emotional aspects of this book are just well done. Not at all over the top. No angels or bright lights for Mia to walk towards..nothing. Just the question. Should she stay or should she go?

That right there made me weep like a baby. Personally I've been on the other side of that conundrum. I've watched a loved one as they lay in a hospital bed fighting for their lives. I know what THAT part is like. This book gave me a little glimpse at what it was like for the one in the bed. That is heart wrenching and ...wow.

This is one of my new favorite books.

The quote on the inside cover is quite right. It IS an achingly beautiful story. I definitely recommend it.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Children's Book Review: Adventures of Rusty & Ginger Fox


Book Description (from Amazon.com)

When two young foxes set out to explore the forest, they encounter all kinds of creatures. Some of them are friendly, while others would like nothing more than to eat the two young explorers! Rusty and Ginger may be able to outfox bears, bobcats, cougars, and wolves, but can they unlock the mysterious box that awaits them on Treasure Island? And will the little girls they meet there turn out to be friends or foes?

Join Rusty and Ginger as they travel through the woods. Author Tim Ostermeyer's beautiful wildlife photography provides a fox's-eye view of the forest. With a charming story to guide the way, and a fact page of wildlife information for every animal introduced in the book, readers can explore nature alongside Rusty and Ginger.

My Review:

This book is simply delightful! My son was so excited to see it on the table when he came home from school. He's six and just entering that awesome stage where he wants to know about everything! We both loved the beautifully done photographs and he enjoyed the story. I loved how engrossed he was when he was sitting on our couch flipping through the pages.

I saw his little imagination crank into overdrive and his brain start churning up more questions about the wilderness and the animals in the pictures. We had a very good time reading this book and I do think it would be the perfect book for any little person that is curious about animals like foxes, or just animals in general!

I have to say that I also learned a little bit from this book too. There are tons of interesting facts about the varieties of animals photographed. I have to say though that for me the best part about this book are the pictures. They are stunning and gorgeous!

**this book was provided by Phenix & Phenix for honest review.

What Are You Reading Monday?





I've had such a great weekend participating in the Thankfully Reading Weekend! I didn't get a whole lot of reading done but I did get enough to make me happy! :) I had fun with the Mini-Challenges and would definitely do this again next year!

I have found out through trial and error that if I plan a big list of books I will fail. So I will try to read ONE book this week. :)

My book selection this week will be :

I have read about this book a lot lately and it's definitely piqued my interest! It's not that long so it's not quite as intimidating as say, The Distant Hours.

I will also use this week to finish books left unfinished for one reason or another. I call it my ADD pile.

Have a great week! :)

Thankfully Reading Weekend-Wrap Up


Well, I didn't do what I had hoped. A little family drama kept my attention away from reading. I won't go into details but my sister is going through something really tough right now. I was on the phone with her most of yesterday.

I will give this read-a-thon a try again next year and hopefully I'll be more productive.

Books Completed: 0
Pages Read: 260

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thankfully Reading Weekend-Last Day + Mini Challenge



Welp, it's the last day! :( I have had fun and even though I haven't been able to read as much as I'd like I'm enjoying myself! :)

Last night I got a good chunk of Thunder and Ashes read. It's a very quick read so hopefully I can finish it and get another good chunk read out of The Distant Hours.

I have work today (woot) so I will take every spare moment and give it to reading!

So to start:

Thunder and Ashes
start on page: 105
ended-156

The Distant Hours
start on page: 361


Today’s Mini-Challenge is hosted by Jen from Devourer of Books:

So what I want to know, is what reading community are you thankful for, and why? Are you thankful for book bloggers? The book community on Twitter? Your spouse or family that lets you ramble on and on about what you’re reading and doesn’t complain (at least not too much) about the myriad of books flowing into the house?


I am incredibly thankful for the book blogging community in general! Everyone I've "met" through my blog has been super awesome and fun! I've always kind of been the "quiet girl in the corner with her books" but you guys have kinda pulled me out of that! I love it! I am eternally grateful for it too!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thankfully Reading Weekend-Day 2

Day 2 is here! I've done all my errands and will now offically start my reading time! I do have two hours of work scheduled for today but the rest is all about da reading!

I'm still on The Distant Hours by Kate Morton. I'm kinda thinking about flip flopping to another book, but not because I don't like TDH but it's just so massive!

Starting on: TDH
pg. 351 -360 (took a break from TDH)

Started: Thunder and Ashes by Z.A Recht
Ended on pg: 105

Did a decent job. TaA is a pretty quick read. I will hope to finish at least TaA tomorrow!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Thankfully Reading Weekend-1st Mini Challenge




1st Mini-Challenge: Hosted By Jenn's Bookshelves

So, for the first Thankfully Reading Weekend, write a post about the book you are most thankful for. This could be a book released this year or twenty years ago. Your post should include why you are thankful for that book.

The book that I'm the most thankful for is Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. My mother gave me her copy and I devoured it. That one book was the start of my love affair with the written word! I could not put it down! Those girls and that family were just so riveting to my 10 year old self. I had been a reader before and loved books but THIS book made me a bookaholic. The copy that I was given has since fallen apart, but I still own a copy.

Thankfully Reading Weekend-Kickoff!

So my family didn't have the traditional Thanksgiving, but we did meet up at my Dad's house and have a little dinner. My sister (who works at Walmart) had to work but she came by on her lunch break and hung out with us. So it was just me, my husband, my son, my dad, and his wife, and my nephew. It was fun. Halfway in I got a huge migraine though and we had to head home, on the way home I got sick and we had to pull over. Not fun!

I'm better now and ready to read! I have to work for 3 hours, but I work from home so it's not that bad! My poor husband has to go to work though. :(

Anyhoodle! I hope everyone's Thanksgiving was great! On to the READING!!! Yay!

I won't post a list as I have work on and off this weekend but I will post as I go! I hope to get at least two books read by the end!


My reading kicks off with:

The Distant Hours by Kate Morton-
Start-pg. 204
End-pg. 350

Total for Day 1-146

Didn't do quite as well as I'd like today. I had a few distractions but I hope tomorrow goes better!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thankfully Reading Weekend!


Here are the details:

There are no rules to the weekend, we’re simply hoping to devote a good amount of time to reading, and perhaps meeting some of our reading challenges and goals for 2010. We thought it’d be fun if we cheered each other on a bit. If you think you can join in, grab the button and sign on to Mr. Linky. If you don’t have a blog, use the comments!

During the weekend, come back and link any Thankfully Reading Weekend posts to the Mr. Linky we’ll put up here on Friday, November 26. Feel free to link as many posts as you’d like. On Sunday will put up another Mr. Linky for your wrap-up post.

We’ll also be checking in on Twitter using hashtag #thankfulreading. Join in for the weekend or for only a single day. No rules, no pressure!

This year, we will be doing some fun Thankfully Reading mini-challenges over the weekend. Be sure to check back Thanksgiving weekend for more details!



I am going to read my butt off this weekend! I have so many books piled almost to the ceiling and I am sooo behind! :) This is going to be mucho fun! :)


Look for my reading plan post coming up soon!

What are you Reading?






Just call me Mrs. Slackity Slack Slack! I am so upset with myself for last week. On Friday I had all these grand plans for updating, reading, and all that, but what do I do? Nothing! I just was lazy! I had the whole day to plan posts, read, and all that but I didn't! Ah! So this week I will be shaping up this blog and getting my shizzle together! Wee!

My Plans for this Week:

  • The Distant Hour -finish up (omg this is soo good but sooo very long!)
  • Leviathan-finish up
  • Blood Prophecy
For Review Writing:
  • Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep
  • Frankenstein's Monster
Yup, you aren't seeing things..This is pretty much my list from last week. *sigh*

Also I plan on getting the winner of my Cheerios giveaway posted by Friday at the lastest!

And also to my lovely readers:

Friday, November 19, 2010

Smart Mouth Review

From the Website:
"With SmartMouth Mouthwash, one rinse in the morning and you'll have all day fresh breath. One rinse at night and you can wake up with fresh breath. No more morning breath! While other leading mouthwashes do not provide fresh breath longer than one hour, SmartMouth delivers at least 12 hours of fresh breath."

Basically this rinse is supposed to keep your mouth fresh for up to 12 hours. There's some kind of voodoo, zinc-ion technology that they use instead of alcohol, and it works! Apparently the reason I've always awakened with a cottony dry mouth feeling isn't because my mouth's been catching flies all night, it's because my mouthwash has alcohol. Yeah, the stuff will kill germs but it also dries out your mouth. Hmm...

Well my stars must have aligned the day I saw that the people over at SmartMouth were looking for bloggers to review their product! I just had to jump on that opportunity and try it out! So without further ado here you go!

My review:

Now as I've already said, this stuff works. I won't go soo far as to say 12 hours but it is really close. I'm sure you could get away with 12 hours if you don't drink anything or eat anything in that time frame, but I do like my grubs and my drinks (that sounds wrong but I think you understand?) I do love the flavor of this rinse. The taste isn't overpowering and it's not too mediciney. My husband wasn't sure it would work, he's been conditioned to "love the burn" of regular mouthwashes so when he heard it was alcohol free he was skeptical. After one night he was a believer and so was I.

I woke up to a mouth that wasn't at all cottony or mucky flavored. They say on the package that it might take up to two weeks to get the full effect, but I noticed it a lot sooner than that. My family and I have been using it for the last week and I think we can all agree that it's great!

The only gripe I have is that it's two bottles. I understand the concept and get it, but it's a wee bit annoying to have the two bottles on my bathroom counter. I get the stuff only works if you mix it up RIGHT before you use it, but still.

All in all I do love this rinse and will look for it when I run out!


You can find this product at Walgreens, CVS, and online at drugstore.com.

**to cover my butt I will say that I did not get paid for this review. I received the product in order to write an honest review.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Blog Tour: Beneath The Silver Lining





On the outside, her family appeared to be one big, happy family. Their house, with her parents, three sisters, and two brothers, was the epitome of a simple yet fulfilling life lived in a small town. But as the author would soon discover, her childhood was in fact a nightmarish phase of her life she would always be running from. Growing up as a carefree girl, Wolfe struggled to comprehend why she was reared in a family where children are deprived of their right to know the truth, adults are always right, and smoothing out a misunderstanding is never an option.

At the young age of nine, she started experiencing cruelty at the hands of her father, who not only abused her emotionally, but physically and sexually as well. Her mother, whose love she sought, was a stern woman who refused to see her husband’s mistakes. As if her deeply troubled relationship with her parents was not enough, Wolfe also had to deal with inner secrets involving creepy characters from the afterlife. Feeling tormented, confused, solitary, and even filthy, this na├»ve girl had yet to be transformed into a strong-willed woman who would become cynical about love and learn to depend on no one but herself while facing more of life’s bitterness.

The first of a series of three, Beneath the Silver Lining Trilogy: Secrets of the Black Box chronicles the author’s journey along a perplexing road of growing up. It was originally written as a therapeutic way to heal her inner wounds and to let go of the pain and anger. However, it is now shared to bring inspiration to readers — especially women.









About the Author:

Amanda Wolfe was born in Ottawa, Canada in the mid ‘60s. She matured at a very young age out of necessity growing up in unusual circumstances. She has always been a happy-go-lucky, carefree spirit and a very strong-willed person. She has done everything from waitressing to owning her own restaurant and selling things from Mary Kay cosmetics to real estate.

She is married to a wonderful man. They currently reside in the great state of Texas with their horses. When she is not at home writing her latest novel, you will find her and her husband flying in their plane and traveling the world together.

For more information on Amanda and her book visit http://www.beneaththesilverlining.com

Beneath the Silver Lining is her first book.


Monday, November 15, 2010

Monday Check In




So this week is going to be full on busy! I have tons of things I need to do! A stack of books needing be read, work out the wazoo, and a house that's been quite neglected! I do (not) look forward to all this but I will take on the challenge! :)

So without further ado, here are my reading/blogging plans!

To Read:
  • Leviathan (my b'day prezzie to myself!)
  • The Radleys
  • The Distant Hours
To Review:
  • Frankenstein's Monster
  • Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep (interesting book)
Tours Coming Up:
  • Arsenic and Clam Chowder (15th)
  • Beneath the Silver Lining (18th)
How is your week looking? :)

Blog Tour: Arsenic and Clam Chowder


Arsenic and Clam Chowder: Murder in Gilded Age New York

Mary Alice Livingston Fleming, member of one of the most prestigious families in New York, was defendant in a sensational 1896 Manhattan murder trial in which she was accused of murdering her mother with a pail of poisoned clam chowder. Her alleged motive was to gain a substantial inheritance. That the defendant was arrested in her mourning clothes immediately after attending her mother's burial added extra interest, as did the fact that the fatal chowder had been delivered to the victim by her ten-year-old granddaughter. An especially scandalous factor was that Mary Alice was the mother of four illegitimate children, the youngest of whom was born in prison while Mary Alice awaited trial. If convicted, she would become the first female victim executed in the newfangled electric chair. All these details became the central focus of an all-out circulation war then underway, particularly between Joseph Pulitzer's World and William Randolph Hearst's Journal.

This murder trial, an intense courtroom battle between combative attorneys, is set against the electric backdrop of Gilded Age Manhattan. The arrival of skyscrapers, automobiles, motion pictures, and other modern marvels in the 1890s was transforming urban life with breath-taking speed just as the battles of reformers against vice, police corruption, and Tammany Hall were transforming the city's political life. Among the legal and social issues raised in Arsenic and Clam Chowder are capital punishment, particularly of women, inheritance by murder, society's different standards for unwed mothers and unwed fathers, gender bias of juries, and the precise meaning of "beyond a reasonable doubt." The aspiring politician Teddy Roosevelt, the prolific inventor Thomas Edison, bon vivant Diamond Jim Brady, anti-vice crusaders Charles Parkhurst and Anthony Comstock, and others among Gotham's larger-than-life personalities play cameo roles in the dramatic story of Mary Alice and her trial for matricide. And the whole remarkable story revolved around a pail of clam chowder.





About James D. Livingston:

Born June 23, 1930, in Brooklyn, New York, James D. Livingston studied engineering physics at Cornell University and received a PhD in applied physics from Harvard University in 1956. After retiring from General Electric after a lengthy career as a research physicist, he taught in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at MIT. Although a physicist by profession, he has long had a strong interest in American history, and is the coauthor, with Sherry H. Penney, of A Very Dangerous Woman: Martha Wright and Women’s Rights.





My Thoughts:
This is a very interesting story! I had a hard time putting this book down as I was pulled into the life of Mary Alice and her trial. I was engrossed in this tale from start to finish and definitely liked it!


Blog Stops:
Monday, November 1
Interviewed at Beyond the Books
Tuesday, November 2
Guest blogging at Thoughts in Progress
Wednesday, November 3
Book reviewed at Just One More Paragraph
Thursday, November 4
Book reviewed at Carpe Libris
Friday, November 5
Book reviewed at Chrissy’s World of Books
Monday, November 8
Book reviewed at A Bookish Mom
Wednesday, November 10
Guest blogging at Writing Daze
Monday, November 15
Book reviewed at Must Read Faster
Wednesday, November 17
Book reviewed at In the Next Room
Thursday, November 18
Book reviewed at Confessions of an Overworked Mom
Friday, November 19
Book Reviewed at Rundpinne
Tuesday, November 23
Book Reviewed at A Few More Pages
Friday, November 26
Book spotlighted at Book Tours and More