It's sad when on a holiday I have to send my hubby and kids to the movies just so I can have a computer to work on. lol Seriously - we have 2 computers and a laptop and between my oldest and her friend chats and youtube, my hubby's war games and my youngest playing games on barbie.com and disneychannel.com I couldn't get on at all today. Oh well, at least they were having fun, right? Of course now I not only have a computer but a completely quiet house - woohoo! lol
It was a pretty peaceful week. I only worked 4 days as I took Thursday off to attend my youngest's family picnic that her school has each year. It was a lot of fun for the kids and I got to chat with friends that I don't often get to see. After the picnic my oldest talked me into dying the underside of her hair black. Not fun to do, but it looks pretty cool. My youngest now says that I'm going to dye the underside of her hair purple when school ends. I just keep laughing at her but she keeps insisting. Funny girl.
Diet and exercise. I know those words should mean something but this past week they didn't to me...at all. I only exercised once and it was pretty half-assed if do say so myself. Then food wise - ug. From Wednesday to Sunday I ate like I was condemned and it was my last meal....for every meal. If it was in my pantry and not super-glued to the shelf I was eating it. I actually gained 1.2 pounds this week so now I'll have to lose that weight again and keep on going. I started being good again today so I'll keep on keeping on.
It was a good reading week overall - here's how it went:
I started off with Primal Passions by Stephani Hecht. I had read about the Lost Shifter series on Chris's blog but hadn't gotten any of the books. I was lucky enough to meet Stephani at RT and she talked me into it (not too difficult as I loves me some shifters). 20 years prior the Ravens had attacked the cat shifter families and killed everyone - or so the surviving family members thought. They later found out that the Hawks (who were supposed to be helping the Ravens but really weren't) had taken tons of children, erased their memories and then placed them in human foster care. Now the alpha cat is looking for 4 of his missing siblings along with many, many other shifters. The first book in the series tells us the story of Logan who is looking for one of the alpha's siblings, Jacyn. Jacyn has no clue as to what he is and when he's attacked by the Ravens he doesn't have any idea why. Logan is out to save him and take him to his family but in the meantime they fall in love. This was a good start to the series and I very much enjoyed it. 4 out of 5
Next was the second book in the series by Stephanie Hecht called A Feral Christmas. Brent, one of the alpha's brothers (one who wasn't lost) goes after the alpha of the Hawk's in order to find out if they can get the information about where the lost shifters are. But the alpha, Daniel, has been on the run from the Raven's and doesn't have the information the cats seek. But he knows where to get it. As Daniel and Brent run from the Ravens to the HQ of the cats the two fall in love. I liked this story as well but it was very similar to book 1 with one of the characters going to retrieve another and on the road trip back to HQ they fall in love. 3.5 out of 5
The third book in the series by Stephani Hecht was Savage Awakenings. This was Rat's story (whose real name is Carson) who gets a distress call from lost shifter Keegan and goes to help. Keegan is great for Rat's self-confidence and Rat/Carson finds the one man he can be with forever. Again, very similar to the first two stories in theme (Chris assures me this changes in subsequent books) with the finding/road trip/fall in love, but still good. 3.5 out of 5
Next I tried to read The Homecoming by JoAnn Ross. I read about half of the book and just couldn't read any longer. The story was about a SEAL who has gone back to his hometown in Oregon and wants to get together with the woman he always had a crush on in high school but she was one of his friends' girlfriend and later, wife. The story wasn't really keeping my attention in the fact that some of the conversations just seemed so irrelevant to the story and I just wanted things to move on. It definitely felt more like a women's fiction novel than a romance. I think I'm in the minority with disliking this one but it just didn't work for me. DNF
Lady of Seduction by Laurel McKee is book 3 in the Daughters of Erin series. I read book two and really enjoyed the writing, the romance and the setting of the book. In this book Caroline goes looking for Grant Dunsmore on a pretty desolate island in Ireland. Grant had kidnapped Caroline four years prior but she never thought of him as truly bad and after her husband died she couldn't get him out of her thoughts. But as much as she wants Grant and he wants her there are more sinister plans that Grant has - are they truly bad...or not?
This was a good story and I liked the romance although there were times where it wasn't completely keeping my attention as the story dragged in a few places. 3.5 out of 5
Kiss a Falling Star by Barbara Elsborg is the story of Ally who leaves London after a series of accidents - one being pushed in front of the train - and she thinks to hide at her brothers country estate from whoever is trying to kill her (and no one believes her). There she meets Caspar who is an ex-con who once worked for the Foreign Office. Caspar is pretty much shunned from the community but Ally sees something under all the belligerence that Caspar spews and becomes his champion - as well as his lover. I loved seeing Ally stand up for Caspar and see all the good in him - despite what all the villagers were telling her about him. She didn't judge him based on talk but was willing to get to know him and make her own decisions and that's always nice to see in a heroine. lol There was a lot going on in the book but it worked pretty well overall and the romance and sex scenes were great. Elsborg always has great humor in her books and some of the lines that Ally had - as well as some of Caspar's - had me laughing out loud. 4 out of 5
My Tracy's TBR Challenge read for the week was Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews. I've had this one for forever and tried to start reading it a year or so ago and I just couldn't get into it. I love the Edge series by Andrews though so I thought I'd give it another shot. With Kate being a kick-ass heroine but not being completely stoic and invulnerable the story ended up really working for me. I know from reading reviews about subsequent books that Kate and Curran start a relationship so the romantic in me is looking forward to reading the next books. 4 out of 5
Last for the week was Yours to Keep by Shannon Stacey which is the 3rd book in the Kowalski series and it was a good one! This is about Sean Kowalski who has just returned from Afghanistan and has been discharged from the army. His first day back he meets a woman who says that he is her "fake" fiance and she would like him to pose as such while her grandmother is town - for a month. This includes living with her and acting the part. Needless to say he send the hot yet batshit crazy woman on her way. But Sean ends up taking the role as well as changing his life forever. I'll be posting my review of this one later this week - keep your eye out.
My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
Kiss of Snow by Nalini Singh
Audiobook Round-Up: Cats and Cops
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