Happy Birthday Heather!


Since I just finished reading The Elite by Kiera Cass and I know how much my good friend Heather not only loves the series but loves her hockey boys I enlisted our friend Brandy to help me out on deciding who would be left in Heather’s Elite if she were involved in The Selection. Without further ado I give you Heather’s Hockey Elite 6. 🙂

The Elite

Happy Birthday Heather! Have a Hot Hockey Guy Day! Now, which one would be the first to go in an Elimination?! HA. Just kidding, I won’t make you choose.

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Where the Stars Still Shine Cover Reveal

Trish Doller, author of Something Like Normal and one of the nicest people you will talk to on Twitter, has revealed the cover of her next book Where the Star Still Shine(due out September 2013 but can be pre-ordered here) and she is doing a contest. If you would like to enter please visit her blog for instructions, rules and guidelines. And if you haven’t read Something Like Normal get on that ASAP. And if you have just sit here and drool with me over the gorgeous cover.


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Review: Bitterblue – Kristin Cashore

Review: Bitterblue – Kristin CashoreBitterblue by Kristin Cashore
Published by Dial Books
on 2012
Format: Hardcover
Source: Gifted
Amazon, Goodreads

Eight years have passed since the young Princess Bitterblue, and her country, were saved from the vicious King Leck. Now Bitterblue is the queen of Monsea, and her land is at peace.

But the influence of her father, a violent psychopath with mind-altering abilities, lives on. Her advisers, who have run the country on her behalf since Leck's death, believe in a forward-thinking plan: to pardon all of those who committed terrible acts during Leck's reign; and to forget every dark event that ever happened. Monsea's past has become shrouded in mystery, and it's only when Bitterblue begins sneaking out of her castle - curious, disguised and alone - to walk the streets of her own city, that she begins to realise the truth. Her kingdom has been under the thirty-five-year long spell of a madman, and now their only chance to move forward is to revisit the past.

Whatever that past holds.

Two thieves, who have sworn only to steal what has already been stolen, change her life forever. They hold a key to the truth of Leck's reign. And one of them, who possesses an unidentified Grace, may also hold a key to her heart . . .

And the Graceling spark is back! What a great, great ending to a pretty amazing series that I almost never read. If you have read my reviews of Graceling and Fire you know that while I loved Graceling to pieces, Fire was definitely not my favorite. I liked it a lot, but I didn’t love it. So with one book left in the series I was scared. I had no idea what I was get in the final chapter of the story. Well folks, I got exactly what I hoped for. I got a story that was almost as good as Graceling, faster paced then Fire, and gave me a new love for Queen Bitterblue that I didn’t have in Graceling. I got the perfect ending to a fabulous trilogy that managed to pull all three books together in a pretty seamless fashion. Simply put, I got exactly what I was looking for.

Bitterblue takes place 8 years after Graceling and about 3 decades after Fire. It’s about Bitterblue, who we first met as a 10 year old in Graceling who was fleeing from her psychopathic father and is taken in to safety by Katsa and Prince Po. Now with her father Leck dead Bitterblue is Queen of Monsea and has been for some time now. Buried under a mountain of paperwork and the burden of the destruction her father caused Bitterblue yearns to get outside and see her kingdom. Unable to do so thanks to her advisers Bitterblue takes to sneaking out and in the midst uncovers secrets in her kingdom that go back to the time her father ruled Monsea and they are secrets that some people don’t want to let out. With the help of some old friends, some commoners and some new friends, Bitterblue has to figure out who to trust and exactly how to move her people forward all while dealing with matters of the heart.

Confession time…I didn’t like Bitterblue in Graceling. I know she was a kid, but there was something about her that I found annoying. So basically I was dreading a whole book about her.  But honestly, I feel head over heels for her in Bitterblue. She had grown leaps and bounds since the first time we saw her and man was I ever grateful. She carried the whole book on her back, I mean she had no choice since the book is titled Bitterblue, but you know what I mean. I actually found myself loving her and the power she held and her desire to want to help her people. I loved seeing her work with Katsa, Po, Raffin & Giddon (like the wouldn’t make an appearance) and I loved seeing her interact with Sapphire and Teddy. As conflicted as she was about moving forward and away from Leck she knew the right thing to do was try and figure out exactly what went down during his reign. And the addition of Fire, Death and the healer were nice touches.

Was Bitterblue as good as Graceling? No, but I’m not sure many books can be. But what it was was a book all its own that used familiar and not so familiar to tie a trilogy together. It used a good mystery to drag you in and kept it fresh and interesting at the same time. Cashore created a fantasy world that was believable in Graceling, gave some background in Fire and tied it all together in Bitterblue leaving this reader very happy and very satisfied. To all of you out there that convinced me to read this series and take a chance, a humble thank you.

graceling    fire


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NOOK/Kindle Book Hoarding? Part 4

Next up in the NOOK/Kindle book series is Angie. Much like Heather & Michelle, Angie and I became friends a few years ago with our mutual love of television.  We chat off and on about books, fashion and still out love of TV.  Below is Angie’s Kindle app from her iPad. As you can tell Angie likes her romance novels. 😉 Let’s give Angie a warm welcome ABCers! (click on the pictures to make bigger)

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1) Head Over Heels by Sara Downing
Thirty-something teacher and professional shopper Grace has a passion for shoes. In fact they were responsible for her meeting her partner, Mark, when she speared his foot with one of her dangerously sharp heels whilst running for a train.

Mark is the other passion in her life, or so she thinks…. When he suggests they try for a baby – but is reluctant to tie the knot on their very long-term engagement – the cracks in her champagne lifestyle start to appear. As Mark becomes ever more controlling, Grace begins to see her blond and sexy boss, Tom, in a different light. A conventionally one-man woman who doesn’t ‘do’ affairs, she suddenly finds herself in the midst of the sort of tangled lifestyle she has only read about in the celeb pages. Throw in the added complications of an untimely pregnancy, a case of mistaken identity and some pretty zany friends and Grace’s life is thrown into turmoil. Retail therapy and even the comfort of her vast shoe collection can’t help her out of this dilemma…..

2) Heart of Mine by Michelle Beattie
To avoid a forced marriage, Laura Gibbs has little choice but to go along with her controlling father’s plan to deceive the man she’s secretly loved for years.

Jake Evans has been burned in the past and has learned the hard way that nobody is interested in him, only his money. So when he wakes to find Laura in his bed, he’s convinced that she’s yet another in a long line of women who only wants his share of his recently inherited gold mine. A fact soon confirmed when her father storms in the room and demands Jake make an honest woman out of Laura, lest he be charged with rape and hanged.

As Laura gains freedom from her oppressing father, she also gains courage. Determined to make a real marriage with Jake, she refuses her father’s demand that she steal from her husband and instead concentrates her efforts on showing Jake the woman she truly is.

Despite Laura’s deceptions, Jake can’t deny his attraction to her. With the physical attraction sizzling between them, Jake begins to believe he’s finally found the woman for him.

But there’s trouble brewing. Hugh, neck-deep in gambling debts with no money in sight, seeks drastic measures that won’t only risk Laura and Jake’s marriage; it’ll risk her very life.

3) How to Make a Budget by Brian Carr
Creating a budget and sticking to it doesn’t have to be a pain; in fact, doing so can be both a financially and emotionally rewarding experience. By creating a budget and living a frugal lifestyle, you can pay off your debt, build up your savings, and start living on your terms.

4) The Kennedy Brothers: The Lives and Legacies of John, Robert, and Ted Kennedy

5) Kissed in Paris by Juliette Sobanet
When 29-year-old event planner Chloe Turner wakes up penniless and without a passport in the Plaza Athénée Hotel in Paris, she only has a few fleeting memories of Claude, the suave French man who convinced her to have that extra glass of wine before taking all of her possessions and slipping out the door. As the overly organized, go-to gal for her three drama queen younger sisters, her anxiety-ridden father, and her needy clients, Chloe is normally prepared for every disaster that comes her way. But with her wedding to her straight-laced, lawyer fiancé back in DC only days away and a French con-man on the loose with her engagement ring, this is one catastrophe she never could have planned for.

As Chloe tries to figure out a way home, she runs into an even bigger problem—the police are after her due to suspicious activity now tied to her bank account. Chloe’s only hope at retrieving her passport and clearing her name lies in the hands of a rugged, undercover agent named Julien who has a few secrets of his own. As Chloe follows this mysterious, and—although she doesn’t want to admit it—sexy French man on a wild chase through the sun-kissed countryside of France, she discovers a magical world she never knew existed and has to decide if the perfectly ordered life she’s built for herself back home is really what she wants after all.

6) Married by Monday by Catherine BybeeCarter Billings:
Sandy blond hair and Hollywood good looks, Carter Billings could have any woman he wants. However, when he makes his bid for the Governor’s seat in the state of California, he needs to settle down and become a family man. Eliza, the woman he secretly adores, embodies the perfect amount of spice and passion to suit his marital needs, but she’s not interested in becoming Mrs. Billings. She can’t even stand to be in the same room with him.

Eliza Havens:
It’s much easier to drive Carter away than to give into desire. Matching couples is how she earns a living, but getting married isn’t an option. The secrets she carries are too dangerous to entangle anyone else. When her hidden identity and past threaten her future, she’s left with little choice. Carter is quick to offer solutions to both their problems, but saying yes could mean endangering the man she’s growing to love.

7) No Turning Back by Tiffany Snow
Kathleen Turner has goals. She moved to Indianapolis to start seeing to them, but things aren’t going quite as well as she’d hoped. She’s a runner for a high-powered law firm in town, not the most prestigious of positions, but it and her part-time bartender gig at least pays the bills. And one of the senior partners is a dreamboat in that obscenely rich, disturbingly good looking, slightly snobbish sort of way.

She was quite happy ogling him from afar, before she did a mortifying face plant in his lap during a meeting. After that…well…she was more about the avoiding. Mature, no. More likely to assure she keeps her job, yes.

She’s made some friends in the few months she’s been in Indy. One of those friends is her neighbor Sheila, though Kathleen can’t say she’s completely comfortable with Sheila’s job choice as a high-dollar escort.

It’s the middle of the night when Kathleen hears fighting coming from Sheila’s apartment. As disturbing as that is, it’s the ominous sound of silence afterwards that keeps Kathleen from falling back to sleep. Slipping from bed with the intention of making sure everything is okay, Kathleen knocks on her friend’s door, only to find Sheila murdered, her naked body sprawled on sheets stained crimson with her blood.

Shock and horror are followed by gritty determination when it becomes clear that Sheila’s death isn’t random and it isn’t the result of a jealous boyfriend. It’s the opening gambit in a web of murder, deceit, conspiracy, and fraud that stretches to the law firm for which Kathleen works. Maybe to the very office that Blane Kirk commands.

And Kathleen Turner, law office runner, can trust no one if she wants to survive.

8) Quick Fix Healthy Breakfasts Under 300 Calories by Curina Todose
If you have struggled with finding the right recipes for breakfast, you can finally breathe in relief. These great breakfasts are full of nutrition, healthy ingredients and taste simply scrumptious. No more hidden fats, sugars, and mystery ingredients.

All these recipes are made with fresh, natural ingredients and items that you always have around the kitchen. Plus, more than half of them take less than 10 minutes to make. Achieving your healthy and weight loss goals has never been easier!

Do yourself the biggest favor, and promise yourself never to skip breakfast again. This book will help you keep that promise!

9) Rising Storm by Kathleen Brooks
Katelyn Jacks was used to being front and center as a model. But she never had to confront the Keeneston Grapevine! After retiring from the runway and returning to town to open a new animal clinic, Katelyn found that her life in the public eye was anything but over. While working hard to establish herself as the new veterinarian in town, Katelyn finds her life uprooted by a storm of love, gossip, and a vicious group of criminals.

Marshall Davies is the new Sheriff in Keeneston. He is also right at the top of the town’s most eligible bachelor list. His affinity for teasing the hot new veterinarian in town has led to a rush of emotions that he wasn’t ready for. Marshall finds his easy days of breaking up fights at the local PTA meetings are over when he and Katelyn discover that a dog-fighting ring has stormed into their normally idyllic town. As their love struggles to break through, they must battle to save the lives of the dogs and each other.

So there you have it, Angie’s Kindle. Stay tuned for next week when you get a look at Gail’s Nook and Kindle apps.

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Licorice and … {CLOSED}

Licorice and ...

On Friday I will be getting my weekly manicure. The manicurist said I should bring in one of my many boxes of Sally Hansen nail decals to do as my accent nail. Well I need your help. I plan to paint my nails black(which I haven’t done in a while) and use one of these three decals. Which one should I use? The winning design will be sent to a voter that is randomly selected. US only. Giveaway goes until 3/1/13 at 11am EST.

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