Saturday, April 20, 2013

Recommended for Shameless Self Promotion

 Blood for Wolves by Me!

Yep. I have finally done it. I self published my book. I went the ebook route for now just to test the waters. I love it, naturally, so I guess the question will boil down to - will you?

As a wolf biologist, Caroline McKenna hates those old fairytales where the wolf is always the bad guy.

Except when she tries to keep a lost little girl from drowning in a pond, she ends up in the Kingdom of Red—where wolves are the bad guys.

And the girl she tried to save? Nowhere to be found.

Now, Caroline has no idea how to get home, and the Kingdom—once ruled by Little Red Riding Hood herself—is in trouble. Her only guide is a man named Wolf, whose golden eyes and oh-my-what-big-teeth-you-have are as startling as they are enticing. Caroline isn’t willing to leave without knowing the young girl is safe, but that means sticking with Wolf. Especially since her only other option is to wander around a fairytale forest alone.

But that means facing dangerous creatures and evil enchantments. There is more happening in the Kingdom than anyone realizes, and if Caroline wants to stay alive she has to figure out her role in this story—and she knows Wolf isn’t telling her everything.

 Notes from the playlits: "Half Acre" by Hem

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Recommended for Moose Owners

This Moose Belongs to Me
by Oliver Jeffers

Sometimes when a moose comes along, it just means he wants to be your moose. Right? Well why not! He does what he's told (not all of the time), knows his name (sort of), and isn't anybody else's moose (maybe). Kids will have fun seeing a young boy attempt to claim a moose in the wild woods and what happens when he discovers that maybe he isn't the only one to try this. Funny story aside, I love how the moose is illustrated as well as some of the wonderful backgrounds that truly capture the beauty of where real moose live. Full of life and giggles, it's a fun little reminder to kids that wild animals are always wild no matter what.

 Notes from the playlist: "Becoming a Legend" by John Dreamer

Desperately Seeking Shapeshifter by Jessica Sims - Werebears and Werewolves? I'm In.

Pros: Sara and Ramsey make a cute couple.
Cons: Ugh.  Why are wolves always a-holes?

The Bottom Line: Aside from my aversion to the description of pack behavior, I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

As much as I railed on Beauty Dates the Beast, I was still really intrigued about the next book, Desperately Seeking Shapeshifter.  Why?  Because I wanted to see if the protagonist’s sister, Sara, would actually meet up with some friendly werewolves, and if she and Ramsey would hook up.  That and the little teaser at the end made it seem possible for those to work.

In a nutshell, Sara didn’t even know werewolves existed until an abusive boyfriend bit her up and changed her.  She’s been having a horrid time ever since, not having any guidance on how to shift and afraid of being found out by other shifters – primarily werewolves.  But it’s happened, so now the only thing to do in order to stay away from them is to pretend to be another shifter’s mate.  And that shifter happens to be Ramsey – a werebear.  Makes perfect sense, right?

I loved the interaction between Sara and Ramsey.  The tension between them was very well done with some pretty strong reasons that they shouldn’t or couldn’t come together in reality, and that once the ruse was over, they would go their separate ways.  That made it all the more tasty when certain steamy moments appeared.  I also just really loved Ramsey.  He’s not your typical suave guy that appears in romance books, but instead the strong silent type that does his thing until the right button is pushed.  And extra points for being a werebear.  I have never seen that before and it’s a cool change.  Especially since I’m bored with werecougars and werepanthers always being the sexy, love you forever types. Wild cats are loners, fyi.

Which sort of brings me to the irritation I have with the wolf pack.  I really hoped that Sara would meet some nice ones, but ultimately those hopes were dashed.  While I’m able to suspend my disbelief *just* enough to accept that humans that shift into werewolves are probably going to run by their own rules and humans can be jackasses, it still drives me absolutely up the wall that there are no real wolf rules involved anytime someone writes about werewolves that are in a pack, aside from the inclusion of an alpha. (By the way, there’s a female and male alpha in a wolf pack – everyone seems to neglect this.  At least here the author acknowledges that the alpha’s mate died.)  Once again wolves get the short end of the stick and that makes me nuts.  I could lay out so many reasons why the pack dynamic didn’t work for me, but that’s a dissertation in itself. Suffice to say that people are jerks and they’re royally screwing up whatever wolf they have in them.  Granted, I shouldn’t be whining about supernatural creatures, but if you’re going to shift into an actual wolf and have wolf tendencies rather than into a half-man, half-wolf rage monster, then you might as well inject the rest of the reality into it.

Aside from the fact that I’m bringing up real world animal social behavior (because I’m like that), I had a great time reading this book.  I wanted to read it so much that when I finally saw it at work I snatched I up, set it aside, and bought it at the end of my shift. Then I was up until 2am reading it.  I liked how Sara finally took charge at the end and though I could have seen a different and almost more satisfying ending, it still gives you the happily ever after that you want, and isn’t that what matters?  Besides, maybe the pair I’m thinking of will end up in a future book...

It's a lot of fun so if you're looking for some supernatural romance goodness, this is a good place to be.  There will be another book in this series, but I don't know if I'm going to read it because the focus shifts back to were-cougars and I've never been all that interested in them.  Maybe because I'm not a cat person?

Notes from the playlist: "Peponi (Paradise)" by The Piano Guys

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Recently Finished


Redshirts by John Scalzi

I've been wanting to read this book for a while, and considering how much I enjoyed Old Man's War, I figured this would be pretty good since Scalzi knows how to bring on the humor while keeping plenty of seriousness in check. Here we have Dahl, who just got an assignment to the Intrepid. Sounds like a great job - except there's a very high death rate in the ship. In fact, it seems as though every time there is an away team, someone dies. Someone unimportant. The captain and other high ranking officers always come back. So what's going on? Why are all the low ranking guys dying? Start channeling your inner Guy from Galaxy Quest and ask the right questions - while this was a teensy bit predictable, I had a good time and look forward to getting my hands on Scalzi's other works. I still like Old Man's War better, though.

Notes from the playlist: "Rise" by John Dreamer

Caraval by Stephanie Garber

Whoops! I completely forgot to mention this. Last month I reviewed Stephanie Garber's amazing book Caraval for the web blog I curre...