Temporary High

You know what’s temporary for me right in this moment??

My feelings!

Why, you ask?

Because in 260 pages this book is going to end and I am not prepared! I have no idea where the author is taking this because the first 353 pages have been several degrees of internal dramatics. The book came out the gates with the character being conniving; slowly plotting her revenge against those whom treated her and her family wrong. And then it went thrilling with battle and escape plans! Happiness followed from reunions only to turn into heartbreaking depression because it appears no one is the same as they were before. Sprinkle in some anger, some elation, and sadness in there and I have no idea what’s going on, what’s going to happen, who’s gonna die but screaming that certain people better not die, cursing the enemy, what the hell is going on?!

I want to stop. I want to slow down. Prolong it. Because the minute this book ends I’m going to shut down. Well, I probably won’t completely shut down right away. I’ll probably go yell at the author on Twitter to be honest… but then the waiting begins. The withdrawal begins. A year; maybe two until the next installment. Go through the cycle of finding that book that will give me that high all over again!

Am I addicted?

Hell yes I am. Show me the dealers. I will buy from them all.

Reading Vivaciously Through Another

When I’m not completely exhausted from life, I love to read. On average I read anywhere between 85 to 110 books a year. Lately I’ve been trying to up that number but, unfortunately, there’s only so much time in a day. Usually it only takes me about a day or two, three tops, to read a 300-400 page book. I felt really bad this last week because I received and advanced reader copy of a story and it took me 10 days to read it! 10. whole. days. It made me feel like crap because I was tasked with a mission essentially and I felt like I was dropping the ball. Because of that, and many other factors, I decided to rearrange my life a little to heap more of what want to do on my plate instead of what I didn’t want to do. (Goodbye long-term, online job)

What’s nice about having book loving friends is during those times mentioned above, I have friends spamming me about the book I gave (forced) them to read. My co-author is currently telling me about the part she’s at in the current series I told her to read and I LOVE it! The express reason I buy books, besides to support the author, is so that I can share them with others and they can tell me all about it. I know I already read it but re-living it through another person’s perspective, especially my friends is such a fantastic feeling. To know that they are feeling the things that I felt at the time I read that part of the story makes my feelings feel a little bit more validated? You know how sometimes reactions are over exaggerated? I feel like mine are sometimes. It probably stems from the fact that I can be overly emotional at times but when my friends are feeling the same excitement, emotional, wtf feelings that I felt then I’m for sure certain it’s not just me.

Another great thing I like about sharing my books is it encourages me to go out and find more, new authors to read. Currently I’m thinking about exploring the Vorkosigan Saga by Lois McMaster Bujold. I’ve been on a science fiction fantasy kick lately and I’ve heard a lot of great things. But I’m hesitant to jump in this series since A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas is coming in days and I’ve been anticipating the release of this book for over a year! My co-author is currently reading the Kate Daniels Series by Ilona Andrews. This is her first foray into urban, paranormal fantasy coming off her contemporary romance kick. My other friend has decided to start reading historical romances coming off her own science fiction series. It also strongly encourages me to do re-reads. So far I’ve made a list of all the books I plan to re-read once I fulfill my Goodreads challenge which involves reading 100 books this year not including re-reads. (I’m at 27 so far and we’re almost half way through the year! I’m so behind!)

I always know that whatever I read will most probably be a hit with them. Whenever they finish a series, they always ask me, “So what am I reading next?” I always have my recommendation list handy and ready to recommend something to them so that I can vivaciously read through them all over again.

Do you have any activities that you enjoy even more because of your friends? Do they provide encouragement or similar feelings? Feel free to share in the comments!

Writing just to Write

My life is insanity.

This past weekend was the busiest, weekend I’ve had in a really long time. My best friend came up to visit for an early birthday bonanza which basically means book sales. We are super avid readers. Well I’m obsessed with reading and I make her read everything I read because I need someone to talk about my books with, haha.

Anyway, a while back I found this website that tells us when and where book sales are occurring in libraries. If you’ve never been to a library sale, go! It’s the most wonderful experience to see books that should be 8+ dollars for $.25-$1. We hit up 3 sales on Saturday and scored huge. In total we ended up buying 82 books for $35. The second sale was the kicker because it was bag day which means you can fill a brown bag with as many books as you can possibly pack in there and pay $5 for the whole bundle. Incredible.



Now its back to the work grind and blog grind. At this moment in time they both make me want to yawn. You ever have just feel brain exhaustion? It’s not like I’m completely tired, I mean I got at least 5 and a half hours of sleep last night, but I feel like my brain just can’t think properly this morning. I think I’m starting to feel overwhelmed with what’s going on in my life currently.

About 2 weeks back I took a leap and responded to one of my favorite authors expressing my interests of being on her review team. I didn’t think I would get a position considering I leave book ratings but not many detailed reviews (thought I’ve gotten a lot better at that since the beginning of this year) and surprise, surprise, I made it on the team. Then, following close behind her first book, I got a short story from one of her beta readers who is writing in her Kindle Worlds to review one of her books and then the author sent me the second book and another indie author asked me to review one of their books! I didn’t expect this at all and I’m so behind! I can usually read a book in a day or two; 4 days max for an average 300 page book.

I’m still trying to finish her second book and she sent it over a week ago. I am literally wondering where all my time is going! Not only that, I’ve decided to quit my online job I’ve had for 4 years because I just can’t keep up with the minimum tasks I’m supposed to do every month on top of reading and now preparing for a trade show I have to go to tomorrow, for work, in Milwaukee.


I wish I had two brains. One could be dedicated to work, house crap and associated other adult things I’m unfortunately required to do. The other brain can be responsible for reading, writing and friend/husband adventures. When the necessary brain is required I can just unzip my skull and put in the brain that’s required for that moment in time. How I would walk around juggling two brains in regular society is semantics.

That’s all I have for today. I guess you can call this an update post because I spent the better part of and hour and 15 minutes trying to catch up on all of my fellow bloggers posts that I missed in the last 4 days. Hopefully life mellows out soon so I can go back to my binge reading, blogging everyday ways. If you’ve been keeping up with the poetry series, I do plan on finishing that out with the last 3 or so poems I had left over. Hope my brain wakes up soon so I can be an actual productive member of society..

How do you cope with your exhaustion days? Ever feel like you have to write something even if its nonsense? Are you like me and wish you had more than one brain? I’d love to know what you think in the comments!

BlindFold Me

I’ve been on a contemporary romance binge read lately. The series in particular I’ve been devouring is called the I-Team series by Pamela Clare. The “I” stands for investigative reporter team; or at least that’s what I think it stands for. The premise of these stories is you have heroine who is a member of this team who, in one way or another, gets involved in serious political drama from basic research on a story. For example, in one of the stories, the heroine is Navajo American and she reports on environmental issues and the happenings on the Native American reservation. During a religious ceremony where they are purifying themselves for one reason or another, police interrupt them and cite them with violating land laws set by the city. Later we learn its a cover up for nefarious, unlawful digging of important Indian artifacts as well as a burial site for murders. Then the bad guy ends up trying to pin it on the reporter and when that doesn’t work, proceeds to try to have her murdered.

Now, you can’t have a heroine without the hero. Well, you could, depending on the book but this is romance so there has to be a hero. The hero in these stories is usually someone who is either involved with the investigation somehow or stumbles upon the heroine in a time when she needs help. In the case of the story above, the hero is a park ranger who has a love for the environment and has been helping to protect it and keeping the peace with the Native Americans. The author used to be an investigative reporter in real life so a lot of the technical and political jargon she includes in her stories have a kernel of truth to them. In her acknowledgements section, she lists people she thanked for helping her get the information correct like park rangers, U.S. marshals, nurses, etc. It’s pretty neat.

So now you have your investigative reporter heroine with her park ranger hero and circumstances bring two strangers together in a dangerous setting. He takes it upon himself to be her protector and she allows it. Then in like a week or two the woman realizes she loves the man, the man doesn’t want long term commitment but at the same time can’t stay away from her while they’re both being hunted by murderers. That’s a big dose of adrenaline thrown in the mix and they can’t help but fall madly in love with each other right? I love these stories even though I find it hard to believe in instant love. Like how does one stranger blindly trust another stranger with her entire life in one moment? I mean he’s a park ranger, or in the other stories, he’s a senator or an ex-con or undercover federal agent so they have tons of combat and survival training and they’re all males who need love in their life so I guess it’s only natural for the heroine to take on the damsel role (not necessarily in complete distress) and it definitely makes for some juicy reading.

Sometimes you get a surprise and it’s the man who knows before the woman but most of the time women know first. You know now that I think about it, my own relationship wasn’t instant love but he definitely knew long before I did. I didn’t have murderers after me, thank goodness, but when you hear that phrase “love is blind” I wonder if it should actually say “love is seeing” because most of the time one knows and just has to convince the other that they know too.

I’m not a writer, I’m a reader: Day 5

Today’s blog post is brought to you by a quote meme and written (typed? texted?) from my cellphone.

I browse social media regularly and I follow a lot of book loving sites. There’s one that posts memes on an daily (hourly) basis. So I came across this meme that says:

 

Read the books that make you happy even if they’re not classics or academic novels that won awards.

 

This got me thinking about my personal book reading preferences now in comparison to what I would read before. Romance novels used to be this taboo. It was that white elephant in the room that no one wanted to talk about. Whenever someone asked your book genre preferences it was always safe to say scif-fi or thrillers or fantasy. If you said romance people would instantly think of the Fabio covers and say you read those “trashy novels”.

Now it seems that you’re the weird one if you don’t read romance. It’s like the book reading world has suddenly embraced all things romance. Here I am thinking everybody is late to the party. I personally think that Twilight and Fifty Shades of Grey can’t hold a candle to a whole host of romance novels by amazing authors. I hate how these are now the basis for a good romance story. Read a good Judith McNaught historical romance or a Sandra Brown thriller or hell a good Anne Rice paranormal to see how it should really be done.

I have my opinions, obviously, and I certainly never want to cause drama. I love that people are embracing little things like romance novels more and more and, like the quote says, aren’t ashamed to say hell yeah I love these books and you should too!

Eleventh Grave

If you are what you read…then what exactly am I? A romantic walk on the beach at sunset? A shattered glass of wine and a screaming wife? A paralyzed author entrigued by the owner of a publishing house? …the grim reaper? (The last one may be my personal fav.)

One of my latest reads has of course (like most of them) come from my bestie and partner in crime. You’ll all get to know her well if you choose to follow us in any capacity, and I encourage you to, because she’s great…and super helpful!

Eleventh Grave in Moonlight by the talented Darynda Jones has definitely made my last week great! This is a book series of 11 books so far (soon to be 12) and is nothing short of romantic, thrilling, and mysterious. I’ve laughed, I’ve cried, and I’ve had major anxiety at times during this ride with Charley and Reyes. The two main characters come from two different worlds (literally) and have converged on earth to do some really wild and crazy stuff.

If you’re someone who likes authors who actually responds to their fans you’re in luck! The book I’m holding in my hands is an actual signed first edition copy. You can chat with Darynda, have webinars with her, and ask her any of the super important questions you have about her work! (She’ll even Tweet you back!)

If you’re looking for a fun, easy, romantic read this is a great series for you! You’ll get sucked in and really bond with the characters through all of their ups and downs! On behalf of both of us at RT, we highly recommend it!

Happy reading! 🙂

Anonymous Bookaholics Tag

Found this through a Discover search on books!

What do you like about buying new books?

The real question is what not to like? New books, whether they be hardcover or paperback just give you that new book feeling. It’s like getting a new car. You stare at it for a while, look inside it, smell it, debate how long it will take you to finish it, those kinds of things. The other nice feeling I get is great joy because I am supporting an author that I love by buying their whole series. I’m very active on Twitter so I send pictures of new books or series to my authors, with giant “MAAAIL” captions and getting that response back that I’ve made them happy with my purchase is one of the best feelings in the world!

How often do you buy new books?

Honestly, I didn’t buy new books very often because I couldn’t afford it before but now I buy them whenever the need arises or a coupon appears because I am a member of at least two local bookstores and there’s no way I’m ignoring those 20% off coupons! Also, I used to have a Sony e-reader and a Nook Color so I would purchase eBooks through their respective online stores.

Bookstore or online book shopping – Which do you prefer?

Most definitely both. As I said before, I am a member of two local bookstores. When I go to them in person and they don’t have the books I check their online marketplace. I like a lot of indie authors though and its very rare to find their books in a bookstore unless you’re super lucky so for them it is always online — Amazon or eBay or Half Price Books marketplace. Another, general, place I frequent is libraries. I bought my first historical romance at my college library which was having a book sale fundraiser. It was A Kingdom of Dreams by Judith McNaught. I bought it for 50 cents! To this day it is one of my favorite books and besides leading me to read every book she’s ever written, it lead me down a path of discovery to other authors! Now I frequent library sales as often as I possibly can thanks to a handy website that lets me know when, where and times. You can find some real gems in a library; even gently used gems!

I have to say, the best online bookshop occurs in my mailbox everyday courtesy of Bookbub. If you like ebooks, Bookbub is the best tool in your arsenal to obtain discounted ebooks as well as great recommendations.

Do you have a favorite bookshop?

The bookshops I most frequent are Half Price Books and Books-a-Million. On occasion I’ll hit up Barnes & Noble if I’m in the area. Local bookstores are awesome as well such as Loganberry Books and The Bookshop on main. I don’t really have a favorite. If I’m craving books and I have a full, empty day, I’ll plan a route and shop all of them. My best friend and I have an excel sheet that we keep on hand so when I go out and shop for books, not only am I looking for books for me, I’m looking for books for her as well.

I solemnly swear I don’t have a problem….

Do you pre-order books?

Again, I didn’t use to because of funds or I would bribe someone else to do it for me. When I was younger, I would beg my mom to pre-order the Harry Potter books because I had to have them the day of release. She always did even if the books arrived on a day I wasn’t home and would text me and let me know my book was there. I would get SO excited! Now I pre-order books if I know the author is going to sign them or I absolutely cannot wait to read the book because I’ve already waited a year plus to continue from that GIANT cliffhanger in the previous installment.

Do you have a monthly book buying limit?

I didn’t even know that was a thing. My husband doesn’t care how many books I buy. He often jokes and says we can’t possibly fit anymore books but I always find a way which most of the time just means buying another bookshelf. That would be like me telling him he can only buy one video game a month. It’s just not going to happen!

Book buying bans – Are they something for you?

I really don’t even know what that means. I guess if I don’t have a monthly book buying limit, I don’t have a book buying ban. My Goodreads list is constantly growing. I always scour my TBR list for a new read and then end up picking something not even on the list. You can’t imagine how hard is NOT to click the recommended books! The covers are so pretty and when you hover over it and see that snippet and star rating how can you not click it?! And then the next one from there and the next one….

How big is your wishlist?

As I said earlier, my friend and I keep and excel sheet of books we wish to have that the other can see when we each go book shopping in our respective states. Currently I have 36 books on my list and she has quite a few more. Its constantly being updated with additions and subtractions.

Which three books from your wishlist do you wish to own?

Image result for city in embers

 

City in Embers by Stacey Marie Brown is the first book in the Collectors series. I wish to own all four books in this series. I used a Google Play credit to buy the first book and it was a nonstop read from beginning to end.

End Game by Lindsay Buroker is a space opera, sci-fi type of series. It is the final book in the Fallen Empire series. I have the previous 7 installments on trade paperback and I’m just waiting for this last one to be printed. I read the whole series in ebook format first then decided I needed it in print form as well. If you’re interested in this series the first book is called Star Nomad.

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas is a series full of just magic! Initially I had no interest in reading anything by this author because her Throne of Glass series just did not do it for me. A friend promised me that this series was different and assured me that I would love it. She turned out to be right and this series, so far, is fantastic. A Court of Wings and Ruin comes out May 2nd!

Since the blog is fairly new, I don’t have anyone to tag but feel free to like or comment with your bookaholics tag for all to see! 🙂

Good Read or not Good Read: Frustrations of a Book Nerd

We all know the platform Goodreads. (At least I hope you do! Shame if you don’t!)

I have been stuck in a bit of a book rut. Usually when one book finishes, I have another book lined up. My latest read was Eleventh Grave in Moonlight by Darynda Jones. If you haven’t read the Charley Davidson series, I HIGHLY recommend that you do. I promise you’ll laugh, cry, sweat, curse and everything in between. Anyway, after coming down from my Darynda Jones high, I look to Goodreads for recommendations. We have our lists. Kind of like a Netflix queue of sorts. Shows your read books, currently-reading books and to-read books. Based off any books in your lists, you can gain recommendations based off the Goodreads algorithm that determines what you would like or dislike. Sometimes the recommendations are spot on. Sometimes they aren’t. The problem is when you have certain expectations. For example, I usually don’t look at a book if its rated 4 stars or less. My rule doesn’t apply to pilot books in a series. Why? I have no idea. Usually when you don’t like the pilot of a show you’re highly unlikely to continue watching right? For books it’s a little different especially when it comes to a series. You have to establish a feel for the writing style, get a good understanding of the world building and see how plot lines are handled. In that sense, you are giving the pilot of chance.

When exploring new authors, sometimes its good to look at the reviews and other times you probably shouldn’t. I personally skim through the reviews. Goodreads is great in that you can look at reviews without spoilers. If an individual leaves a review, they have to specify if there are spoilers in the review or not. Actually, if I’m not mistaken, I’m pretty sure there’s some kind of bot that will remove reviews if there are spoilers. I skim the star ratings to see what people say or if it was added to the DNF (did not finish) pile. The problem is how to decipher actual, GOOD, reviews from bandwagon reviews. If you want to know what I mean by “bandwagon” reviews, just look up Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James and you’ll see what I mean. I’ve explored many books this way but so far I’ve experienced one and dones. All of these were pilot books to 8+ book series’ and they weren’t bad, they just weren’t good…. I think my expectations are set too high because I’m constantly comparing new stories and writing styles to stories written by authors I love. How do you turn that instinct off? It’s not necessarily a bad thing (you like what you like) but it narrows your reading genre down significantly; makes you close-minded of sorts. That’s no fun.

As you can see from my picture, I have found something to read for now. I confess it’s just a pilot book for a different series from an author I already love but cross your fingers my next book will be something new! I have a 100 book 2017 Goodreads challenge and I intend to reach this goal!