Monthly Archives: December 2007

Rockin’ New Year’s Eve

Barbara Vey -- December 31st, 2007

New Year’s Eve.  Time to reflect on the past year and look ahead to the new one.  New beginnings, a fresh start.

As a kid, we looked forward to New Year’s Eve because our folks would go out, we’d get a baby sitter for all nine of us and it was party time.  We’d make peanut butter sandwiches and cut them into little pieces, stick toothpicks in them and call them appetizers.  We’d wear funny hats, plastic leis and blow curled up horns that unrolled into each others faces.  Then we’d pour sparkling grape juice into plastic champagne glasses and toast in the New Year.  Of course, we ended up doing this several times as the tv celebrated midnight all over the world.  The coolest thing, of course, was watching the big ball fall in Tme Square.  We scream "Happy New Year" in each others ears, throw confetti and sing our version of Auld Lang Syne (Old Hang Sign).

Another New Year’s tradition is the dreaded New Year’s Resolution.  You all know, that thing that you promise to change about yourself (for the better) to get 2008 off to a great start. 

I’m kind of in a quandry this year.  I’ve always taken the "I want to lose weight," but I’ve done that.  I don’t smoke, so can’t use that one.  Be a nicer person?  Well, I really try to do that all the time anyway.  Be more organized?  That’s never going to happen, so no use wasting a resolution on that.  Does that mean I don’t have to have a resolution?  Am I the best I’m going to be already?  Or is it that I can’t think of anything that I’ll stick to for more than 24 hours.  Hmm, maybe that’s the answer.

My resolution is to get up every morning with one thing I can change for 24 hours.  Let’s see, I can not drink soda for 24 hours (difficult, but not impossible).  I can not complain for 24 hours (again, difficult, but doable if I don’t go out much that day).  Perhaps I’ll sit down and actually write real note cards to send people, instead of email for one day.  No tv for  a day (just not on Tuesday).  I may have to repeat some things because coming up with 365 resolutions could be daunting.  Wonder if I’ll be able to keep my resolution past January 2nd?

Happy New Year Everyone!!  And good luck with those resolutions…

Bottom Line:  My best bet is possibly to stop making resolutions…or at least telling anyone what they are.

Babs Picks Her 2007 Favs

Barbara Vey -- December 28th, 2007

It’s that time of year when everyone and their uncle is doing their best of lists.  Best movie of 2007, best television show, cutest couple (really, it’s on and so on.  This obviously is a very personal choice as different as we all are and should be.  While I’ve read and watched a lot and enjoyed much…there can be only one.  And with that said, here’s my favorites:

Best Book:  Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (I went through 7 book years with the Hogswarts gang and would gladly do it again and again.  Plus there is the advantage of sharing it with my children and grandchildren.  That can’t be said of many books.

Best Movie:  Enchanted.  Hands down the one movie that made me feel so good I was humming for days until Andrew bought me the sound track.  I can’t wait for the movie on dvd and I would happily give this as a gift to any age.

Best new TV showPushing Daisies.  This delightful, quirky show, with the very unusual premise, is done in bright colors, has a mystery to solve every week, lovable characters and is narrated by the talented Jim Dale (who voices all the Harry Potter audio books).

Best old TV show:
  The Amazing Race.  A reality show that doesn’t lock people together just to watch them tear each other apart.  This smart, fast paced program makes people use their wits to travel from point A to point B while giving them unusual tasks to perform.  The highlight was when the grandfather/grandson team had to pole vault across a muddy stream and the grandpa fell in.  Undaunted, he stripped off the heavy muddy clothes, only to reveal black speedos.  The grandson:  "Whoa…grandpa."  Whoa indeed.

Best actor:
  Johnny Depp.  While I didn’t care for the third Pirates of the Caribbean movie, Johnny’s performance was stellar.  Only he could pull off making a goofy, dirty, slimy pirate seem sexy.

Best actress:   America Ferrera.  Ugly Betty proved that beauty comes from within.   Her postive, can-do attitude and glaring braces smile came through despite a challenging job at a fashion magazine, a deported father, a boyfriend who will be leaving in a few months because he got another woman pregnant, and a teenaged nephew who is extremely comfortable belting out a tune from Hairspray on the subway.  You gotta love it!!

Now that I’ve made my personal preference known, your turn to do the same.  There are no right or wrong answers, just your favs for 2007.

Bottom line:  Most bizarre quote of 2007 comes from Drew Peterson about his wife – "I bought her a Glock for Valentine’s (Day) — because nothing says I love you like a Glock.                                                                                                                                                      

Last Blurbs of 2007

Barbara Vey -- December 27th, 2007

Because the holidays are on Tuesdays this year, our WW meetings are canceled, so no WW ladies this week.  But we still have friends who are willing to weigh in with blurbs from the books they’ve been reading.  And let me take this opportunity to thank all who have gone above and beyond by helping me to read the piles of books that, as we speak, are tumbling over.  Loretta, Jan, Judy, Rhonda, Jenny, Anne, Lynda, Deb, Samantha, Gail and Joyce.  My heartfelt thanks for putting the word out on terrific books and the authors who write them.  Here’s to blowing the lid off of 2008!

Thunder Moon by Lori Handeland

Reviewed by Joyce

Grace McDaniel is a young woman who has ignored the spiritual side of her Cherokee heritage to become the Sheriff of Lake Bluff, Georgia.  After a particularly bad thunderstorm, folks appear to be dying of natural causes at an alarming rate.   She becomes suspicious of the new doctor in town, Ian Walker, and investigates him as well as the superstitions and folklore of the region.  The magic that surrounds them is not only the supernatural kind, and she can’t seem to distance her mind from her heart.

Whoo-wee!  Narrated with ease and humor, this suspenseful story might be one of the best in the series, though since they’re all so good, that is difficult to decide.  The heroine seemed to be someone I’d like to know – or be in my next life. I read Thunder Moon in a day, and had a very hard time putting it down to do small things like –oh– go to my place of employment.

Since discovering the Nightcreature novels, my motorcycle rides through the forests of northern Wisconsin have changed;  I keep looking for werewolf crossing signs…

Southern Seduction by Alexandria Scott

Reviewed by Anne

Brooke Hammond was a courtesan in England until her final "gentleman friend" leaves her Moss Grove plantation in America.  This is her chance to begin her live anew.  Travis Montgomery thinks he owns the plantation until he finds out his English father has put conditions on the ownership.  Furious, Travis realizes he must figure out a way to work things out with Brooke to fulfill the terms of the will or risk losing everything.

This book manages to intertwine the aristocracy of England with the simplier ways of American culture.  Throw in an angry Mother and her Creole family, a delightful niece, along with the colorful plantation staff and you have a read that’s fast paced and fun.  (Note:  While there were several editing errors that were extremely frustrating to a reader, Barbara has assured me that this is not the fault of the author.  Good to know.)

Athena Force – Line of Sight by Rachel Caine

Reviewed by Joyce 

Two teenage girls are kidnapped off the street near their boarding school, Athena Academy.  A call for help is placed to former student, FBI Special Agent Katie Rush, who specializes in finding missing persons.  When a handsome, charming man shows up claiming to have a psychic ability that will help her find the girls, she views him, and her feelings for him, with misgivings.  Katie must make critical choices, always aware of the urgency and danger of the situation.

Fast and suspenseful, this book kept me on the edge, and left me wanting more.  Which is a good thing as I discovered that this book is one of a continuity by Silhouette Books entitled Athena Force.  Going back to 2004, a multitude of authors have written about the extra-special women of the Athena Academy, their individual abilities and problems, and the need to keep under the public radar.  I am working on finding other books in this series and hope that they measure up to this work by Rachel Caine.

Marjorie M. Liu’s approach to writing (picture from her blog).

Bottom Line:  2007 was the year of the blog…2008 will be the year of the book…write on people, write on. 

And Visions of Sugar Plums…

Barbara Vey -- December 24th, 2007

Today is Christmas Eve.  It doesn’t seem possible.  I mean, where did the year go?  

When I was a kid, I couldn’t sleep before Christmas thinking about all the gifts I would wake up to Christmas morning.  Now what I get isn’t nearly as important as what I give.  I love giving the gift that make someone squeal with delight or tear up with emotion.  At our annual "Sister Party" I gave all my sisters tote bags that had little pockets on the front for pictures.  I filled them with pictures from our childhood and early adult life when we were young and thirty seemed like old age.  There were pictures of my dad and grandma who have since passed, but  are still the fabric of our lives.  

Tonight I’ll go to my youngest sister’s house and my mom, all my brothers, sisters, significant others, their kids and now their kids kids will be there.  That means 59 of my immediate family.  I know how blessed I am.

But, I’d like to mention my other blessing, this blog.  Through it I have had the opportunity to meet the most amazing people and travel to places I’ve never been.  

From the very bottom of  my heart, I wish all of you a very Merry Christmas and happy holidays.  May the joy of the season light up all of your lives.  (Sorry, I couldn’t resist using this picture one last time this year)

Bottom Line:   Ok, I lied…I can’t wait to open my presents. 

Your Turn – Christmas Edition

Barbara Vey -- December 21st, 2007

I just finished a marathon round with Christmas books.  Not that I minded.  I especially love this time of year for books.  All my favorite genres come together with the common theme of Christmas and of course, happily ever after.  And don’t we all really want that sigh at this time of year?  That moment of contentment…Peace on Earth, Good will toward All.  <sigh>

I couldn’t resist and started off with A Highlander for Christmas by Sandy Blair.  Claire MacGregor runs an antique shop in Boston.  Sir Cameron MacLeod is headed for the Culloden battle in 1745 Scotland.  The two come face to face (or should I say face to nakedness) when Claire opens an antique box and Cam stands before her in all his glory.  

This delightful time-travel is the stuff dreams are made of.  Cam is the fish out of water in modern times and Claire is the woman who can stand up to his warrior ways.  Their journey together is a fast, fun romp as they try to find Cam a way back to his own time.

I’m such a sucker for all things Highlander (ahhhh, Adrian Paul) and Sandy delivers my Christmas wish.

Next up was Holiday with a Vampire.   Loved the title.   Maureen Child‘s contribution, Christmas Cravings has vampire Grayson Stone returning to his human home every Christmas on the anniversary of his family’s murder and his own death.  Tessa Franklin, with secrets of her own, is the current owner who finds an unconscious Grayson on her property.  Together they work to heal the pain of their pasts while battling vampires and a mysterious assailant.

In Caridad Pineiro’s story Fate Calls, lawyer Connie Morales dresses up like Santa to ring a bell for charity.  Hadrian Aurelius is a vampire with no use for humans.  When he can’t stand the bell ringing any longer, Hadrian confronts Santa not realizing he’s a she.  

While this is Maureen’s first step into the vampire world, Caridad has added on to her popular Calling series. These short stories can introduce readers to authors they haven’t yet experienced.  A great way to "try on" a new author.

Then it was on to The Perfect Tree, a very sweet Christmas anthology.  Roz Denny Fox‘s Noelle and the Wise Man.  Noelle Hale runs the family tree farm in Oregon.  Enter Camden Latimer, former cop, who inherits the tree farm next door to Noelle.  When a property dispute threatens Noelle’s chances at having her tree picked for the White House, she needs to decide what is really important in life.

One Magic Christmas by Ann DeFee.  Honey Campbell’s car breaks down in a snowstorm til she’s rescue by a man resembling Santa on a decorated snowmobile.  He drops Honey off at the Magic Tree Farm owned by her ex-husband, Matt De Luca.  Matt isn’t thrilled with seeing his ex for the first time in 15 years, but the blizzard keeps them in close quarters…along with 3 kids and a dog.

Tanner and Baum by Tanya Michaels.  Tanner Waide returns to his home town of Mistletoe, Georgia in shame after his business partner’s embezzlement.  Lilah Baum, the girl he left behind, is now a school teacher and not exactly thrilled that Tanner is back in town.  It’s up to Tanner to convince her otherwise.  (Ok, I admit I was a little slow to get play on words with the title…clever Tanya)

Three Christmas stories to warm even the coldest heart on these long winter nights. 

Your turn…what have you been reading?  Christmas tales?  Love stories?  Mysteries?  Thrillers?  How to books?  It’s ok, you can tell us.

Bottom Line:   Only 4 more days to read the books I bought as Christmas gifts before I have to wrap  them…don’t worry, everyone knows I’ve been doing it for years.

Laugh Out Loud Funny

Barbara Vey -- December 20th, 2007

Every now and then I need a book to make me laugh out loud.  You know, the kind that you tell your friends, who’ve also read it, the funny passage and you all start laughing so hard that you (accidently) pee your pants.  Janet Evanovich has mastered that with her Stephanie Plum series.  

Whenever I get together with my mom, sisters and nieces, we inevitably start talking Stephanisms.  It goes something like this:  "Remember when Stephanie and Lula tried to apprehend that fat guy and he was naked and covered with vaseline and they couldn’t grab onto him?"  "Or, how about when Grandma Mazur was wearing hot pants in a band and farted and then said, ‘Who stepped on a duck?’ "  "How about when the taxidermied cat exploded in the car and there was fur stuck on the dashboard?" "What about when Stephanie was blindfolded and tied up, but still managed to burn down the funeral parlor?"  "And don’t even get me started on what happens to her cars."

Well, I got an email a while ago from Lauren Naefe at HarperCollins about some videos that Meg Cabot did.  Now I know that Meg wrote the hugely popular Princess Diaries and I remember reading The Boy Next Door and recommending it to others.

So I checked out the videos.   Beauty Tips (I could totally identify with it), On Writing (it helped me figure out why I never could write a book…you actually have to sit down and write it), Little Women (I guess I read the wrong version) and Tabloid Wars (my favorite…I actually laughed out loud when Meg started doing her own sound effects).   

After watching these hilarious videos, I knew I had to read her latest book, Big Boned.  

Heather Wells is a "plus size ex-pop star turned Assistant Dormitory Director and sometimes sleuth."  When she finds her unlikable boss murdered, Heather needs to find the killer or be one of the suspects herself.  Complicating her life even more is a vegan math professor who wants to ask her a "special question," her ex-con dad who wants her back in show biz on a kiddie show and her hot landlord who didn’t want to be her "rebound beau."

Growing up I was convinced I was big boned.  I mean, if I was "bigger" then the rest of the girls, then I must be "big boned."  Made sense to me, so I could really identify with Heather.  One of my favorite parts of the book (that I’ve already repeated to everyone I know) is when Heather wants to prove she has things in common with the math professor and offers to run with him in the morning.  When they start, she tells him to run ahead and she’ll catch up.  Heather begins ok, but within a few steps she’s not so sure:

"…I think I felt something come loose back there.  I’m not trying to overreact or anything, but I think it was my uterus.  Honest.  I think my uterus jiggled free.  Is that even possible?  I mean, could my uterus just come sliding out?"

This cracked me up.  I’m not a runner, but every once in a while I’ll jog a few steps just so I feel like I could run, if I wanted to, and I kept imagining my uterus slipping out (ok, maybe not my uterus because I don’t have one any more, but if I did have one it would really be funny).  

How about you?  Any books make you "laugh out loud?"  

Bottom line:  "I am thankful for laughter, except when milk comes out of my nose."  ~Woody Allen

WW Ladies and Friends Check In

Barbara Vey -- December 19th, 2007

My ladies have been very busy reading this week and I am extremely grateful to them considering all the distractions during this holiday season.  But when you have great books to read, the shopping, cooking, wrapping, cleaning, card writing and socializing fall to the side.  As it should be.

Guardian’s Keep by Lori Devoti

Reviewed by Joyce 

Following Lori Devoti’s novel Unbound, the tradition of Norse Mythology is continued in Guardian’s Keep.  Charged with guarding a portal to others of the nine worlds, Kol Hildr runs the bar for unearthly patrons in which the portal stands.  Witch Kelly Shane believes the place, and its guardian, to be evil.  While trying to ignore her baffling attraction to the barkeep, she uses her talent and magic to access the portal and try to shut it down.  Power struggles and interspecies warfare complicate things, and they find the concept of good and evil isn’t simple.

I wish I would have read Unbound first because I think a lot of my questions would have been answered.  Mythology has always fascinated me and it adds an extra dimension to an already riviting, action-packed read.  

An Affair Before Christmas by Eloisa James

Reviewed by Loretta

Eloisa James begins  An Affair Before Christmas portraying the social ladder in ‘Merry Olde England’.  It appears to me that every female aspires to marry a Duke and thus become a Duchess – a position in that hierarchy second only to God, I guess.  The sweet heroine, poor Poppy (Lady Perdita Selby), does just that because of her mother’s dominance, but cannot adjust to married life or love.  Her husband, Duke of Fletcher, is determined to win her over.
  Eloisa James crafts an amazingly interesting tale catching the reader’s interest to the very last page.  A fun read!  

Moving Target by Cheyenne McCray

Reviewed by Joyce 

Ani King witnessed the mob murder of her family two years previously, and she had to disappear to escape her own death.  US Deputy Marshal Daniel Parker has had the job of hiding her away and keeping her safe.  Just days before she is to testify in court, her enemies learn of her whereabouts, and Ani and Daniel must run to keep beyond the reach of the ruthless killers.  The intimacy of their peril ignites their relationship from professional into burning passion, endangering not only his job, but their hearts.  

I’ve read Cheyenne McCray’s novels about magic, so I was curious to see how she does with suspense.  The answer is – just fine.  Moving Target is an engaging, fast paced read that had me from the start and wouldn’t let go. 

The Christmas Pearl by Dorothea Benton Frank

Reviewed by Jan

In the twilight of her life at age 93, matriarch Ms. Theodora is saddened to think her modern-day family will never know the joys and memories of the wonderful, extravagant holidays that she cherished as a child.  In walks Pearl, her grandmother’s beloved housekeeper–a ‘ghost from Christmas past’–who with a twinkling of her eye and lots of Gullah magic, brings the dysfunctional family together to form cherished memories of their own.   An uplifting Christmas tale.

Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen

Reviewed by Lynda

As a young man, Jacob Jankowski’s life is torn apart with the death of his parents just as he is ready to take his finial exam to become a veterinarian and join his father’s practice.  He gets other disturbing news that his father’s practice is not doing well at all…after all it is the 1930′s and he has been exchanging anything people have for vet services.  Jacob wanders around and jumps on the first train that comes along.  It happens to be the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth….yes he has joined the circus.  This starts a whole new life for him with a new challenge every day. He meets the love of his life along the way and yes, an elephant too.

The most interesting part of this book, for me, was the fact that it started out end of Jacob’s life in a nursing home (he’s not sure if he is 90 or 93 years old) and it goes back through his years of his circus life.  This outstanding story by is a must read for all.  I really enjoyed the emotional ride and I plan to find other books by this author.

The Fortune Quilt by Lani Diane Rich

Reviewed by Rhonda

Carly McKay is a television producer who receives a quilt and psychic reading as part of a piece she is producing.  She’s skeptical until it starts coming true.  Carly moves to Bilby, Arizona where she meets Will, a painter living in the cabin next door.

A story about life and how if you watch for the signs and follow your heart, it’ll turn out just the way it is suppose to.  This was such a marvelous read that really hit home.  I loved it and look forward to more by this author.

Bottom Line:  So, come Christmas Eve, do you think I can get away with, "Sorry, I didn’t time to (fill in the blank) because I really had to read this book"…no, I didn’t think so.

Why Don’t Pregnant Women Topple?

Barbara Vey -- December 18th, 2007

There is a lot of weirdness out there, but who thinks up these studies?  Money is actually given to organizations who find answers to some of the most asinine questions.  Personally, I don’t care, but I’m sure somewhere, someone does.

Here’s one that I’m sure kept you up all night, why don’t pregnant women topple?   Really, someone studied this.  "Scientists think they have figured out why pregnant women don’t lose their balance and topple over despite ever-growing weight up front. Evolution provided them with slight differences from men in their lower backs and hip joints, allowing them to adjust their center of gravity, new research shows."  New research?  You mean they researched this before and didn’t figure out there is a difference between men and women?  I was pregnant twice, but I have to admit there were times I toppled when I wasn’t pregnant.  What do you suppose that means?  Have they studied that?

Now this one I just don’t get.  Aggressive females get the mate.  "Aggressive female antelopes are more likely to get a mate even when they go so far as to charge at the male to stop him from having sex with a rival, a study released Thursday found.  But while the males may be turned on by this behavior the first few times, they eventually get angry and will even lock horns with the females to make them to stop pestering them, according to the study published in Current Biology."  Now let me get this straight…first it says that aggressive females get the mate and then it says this only works a few times before the males get ticked off and fight back.  But then that means the aggressive females don’t get the mate.  I’m getting a headache.

And just for a smile, here’s Pretty in Pink"Members of the Maricopa County DUI chain on a work detail as deputies guard them Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2007 in Phoenix, Az.. Men convicted of drunken driving will don bright pink shirts and perform burials of people who died of alcohol abuse as part of a new chain gang in Phoenix."   Apparently this is seen as some sort of deterrent to criminals, but personally, I think it would brighten up their drab days.  I mean, they get to go outside and it is December in Arizona, not Wisconsin.  Besides, I see pink and think they are helping to promote breast cancer awareness.  

So my question to you is, do you writers out there search for these weird stories to maybe use someday in a book?  Or do you stick with your imagination?  And to the readers in all of us, if you read this in a book, would you think the author has a great imagination or has been hitting the bottle?  (Just kidding)

Bottom line:  Where do I apply for money to do a study on the mating habits of authors?

Survive This…

Barbara Vey -- December 17th, 2007

What a Sunday!  Shoveled out 9 inches of snow (it’s so pretty, but what a pain in the butt) and watched the Green Bay Packers plow through the St. Louis Rams on their way to the Playoffs.  I was exhausted (I tend to get very physical during the Packer games).  

Todd, Denise, Courtney, PG and Amanda

Then the Survivor finale.  Not my favorite season.  I wanted James to win, but he got kicked out a couple of weeks ago and then I was rooting for Denise, the lunch lady.  Of course, as it always seems to happen when I watch these shows, my least favorite people make it to the finals, you know, the ones we love to hate.  Todd, the scheming flight attendant,  Courtney, the anorexic looking female, and Amanda, the beauty queen who got rid of James.   Well, Todd the schemer won and he deserved it because he did outwit, outlast and outplay.

Now, on to the news in the book world.  First off, Barbara Ferrer let me know that "several Latina authors have banded together for a 12 Days of Chica Lit blog tour where we’re sharing stories we’ve written, holiday memories and recipes— it started last Monday, but will be going through until next Sunday.  (Yeah, there were thirteen of us.  <g>)  Each of us is also giving away gifts as part of each of our blog posts— it’s been a lot of fun and a great way for us to give something to the readers."  Check it out, the food part had my mouth watering.

Next up is a high five to Marilyn Puett, Playground Monitor at the Writing Playground, who emailed me an article about The Red Hat Society’s new cookbook Eat Dessert First (I love it already).  Marilyn is a card carrying member and her Crispy Oatmeal Cookie recipe was chosen to be included.  She’s been making these cookies since third grade and it was the very first thing she learned to bake.  It’s been a big hit with her husband and sons and was picked out of 1,500 entries.  (Another food item.  I’m going to ask people to start sending samples.)

Finally we have Deborah MacGillivray.  Her books, A Restless Knight and In Her Bed sold to Japan.   A Restless Knight had already sold to Germany.  Deborah also shared "I do wonder about translations.  A very nice lady from Spain posted aobut my book on her site.  I had written ‘…there was only this knight dressed all in black…’  The translation she did came out "There was this knight in a black dress.’"  Yikes, I wonder how you stop that from happening.  I can only imagine how exciting it is to sell a book here in the U.S., but to have it go to other countries and be retold in their languages must be thrilling beyond words.  So, a big Beyond Her Book high five to you.                                                              

Bottom line:  All of a sudden I’m craving Cuban food…but I think I’ll have dessert first.

Friday Reading Madness

Barbara Vey -- December 14th, 2007

Another busy week here.  Monday was news and kudos, Tuesday was giving books for Christmas, Wednesday had the WW ladie’s friends with book blurbs and yesterday we strung lights on the Christmas tree.  Now today I get to tell you what I was doing in my spare time this week…reading, of course.

First up is Hot by Julia Harper.   Turner Hastings is working a Saturday shift at the bank when 2 inept robbers hold the place up.  This is the opportunity she needs to right a wrong from 4 years ago.  So, she takes papers that will prove her uncle innocent of embezzelment, but now is on the lam herself.  Enter Special Agent John MacKinnon of the FBI who feels the woman is the mastermind of the robbery gang.   

There were several things that made this book a definite re-read for me.  First, the development of the relationship between the characters without them even meeting in person.  Their entire communication was done by cell phone and we still manage to learn so much about them.  The second hook was the setting of the book.  Yes, it was Wisconsin.  I live in a small town in Wisconsin and Julia was dead on with her descriptions of the police and politicians, as well as dynamics of  small town living.  The final straw was mentioning Ned Yost (manager of the Milwaukee Brewers…but you knew that already) in the first chapter.  Hooked me and didn’t let go.  This is a delightful, entertaining romp through the Badger State (remember this, you’ll need it in the book) with characters you won’t soon forget.

Next up was The Perils of Pleasure by Julie Anne Long.  This historical romance has Colin Eversea, rich, rogue extraordinaire, on his way to the gallows for murder.  Madeline Greenway is the unconventional mercenary who plans the daring escape of the infamous murderer. It doesn’t take long for them to realize that someone wants Madeline dead, but Colin alive.  Joining forces seems a fate worse than death, but it is the only way for these two to solve the crime.  

This is a whodunit that would make Agatha Christie proud.  The plot twists and turns and characters never seem to be who or what they say they are.  The dialog between Madeline and Colin is delightful .  It’s amazing to watch them grow to trust by just observing one another.  In this book, there are times the characters actions definitely speak louder than words.  Anyway, great story that keep me reading well into the night and I look forward to many more of Julie’s books.

Two great book covers.  I love them both, but for different reasons.  These covers let the reader know what kind of books they will be reading.  I like it when they stay true to the story.

I read one more book, but I’m saving it for next week.  Here’s your chance to let everyone know who/what you’re reading.

Bottom Line:  Have you been studying your sex myths from yesterday’s blog?  Possible pop quiz next week, be prepared.