Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Book Review: Fragile Eternity

Fragile Eternity (Sequel to Wicked Lovely) by Melissa Marr

Aislinn is queen and that means that she has to spend time with her faerie king - Keenan. But her mortail love Seth is having problems dealing with Aislinn's double life. She wants to hate Keenan but she can't. Both for her people and just in general.

Can Seth figure out how to fit in her world without destroying himself? Is it worth it to be part of Aislinn's world?

Thoughts: Do I love this series? I don't know. For me at times it seems a bit slow. In the end though I end up happy with how things have progressed and want to keep reading. Everyone in this books seems to want to be with someone that they shouldn't. Whether it is romanticly or just because. And while that is good - I just don't see where it is all leading. There isn't really an overarching plotline other than the need to see where all these relationships are leading and moving together.

Again something I would continue reading (at least for a while). But not something I put on the top of my can't wait for list.

What genre would you consider this?
Teen Paranormal


Monday, September 28, 2009

Book Review: The Awakening

The Awakening by Kelley Armstrong

Description:Chloe has been captured by the Edison Group. She wants to know why they seem to be after her and her friends with special abilities. (Chloe can raise the dead and speak to ghosts - she is a necromancer). Her getting captured means two things - an opportunity to find out what is really going on and an opportunity to get back and save her friends.

Simon has always liked Chloe and he is protected by his werewolf brother Derek. Derek seems to not appreciate Chloe but will do anything to protect her. Add to that the complication of someone who seems like a friend who isn't and maybe someone who doesn't seem like a friend truely being one.

They need to escape the Edison Group and stay together. But is that possible? Why are they really here?

Thoughts: I had forgotten how much I liked this series until I picked up this book and started reading. The characters are great and not your normal run of the mill story line. I have my very own suspicions as to who is supposed to end up with who. Who is good and who is bad. And all of those kinda thoughts show me what a good book that this is.

It definitely is appropriate for teens. Other than the paranormal twist there is no sex - some limited violence (but not graphic).

In fact I like this teen series even better than Kelley Armstrong's Otherworld series. And I always thought that was good.

What genre would you consider this?


Sunday, September 27, 2009

Author Post by Roberta Temes Ph.D.,Author of Solace: Finding Your Way Through Grief and Learning to Live Again

How to Write a Eulogy
By Roberta Temes Ph.D.,
Author of Solace: Finding Your Way Through Grief and Learning to Live Again

Are you preparing a eulogy? Here's some help:

It is an honor to commemorate the life of a person who has recently died.
The eulogy serves many purposes for those in the audience:
• It fulfills the human need for ceremony to mark an occasion; the death should not go unrecognized.
• It comforts the listeners to have their feelings put into words.
• It comforts the listeners to know that the deceased was understood.
• It provides a cathartic opportunity for the listeners; they can weep with no censure.
• It is a way to immortalize the deceased; your words will live on.
• It is an opportunity to educate listeners about some personal traits of the deceased.
• It is an opportunity to bring some respectful levity to a sad event.
To get ready to write the eulogy think about the deceased and jot down about ten words that come to mind. The words can be positive or negative, silly or serious. Then think about some experiences you had with the deceased and write them down. You can write just a few words to represent each experience or incident that you recall -- no need to have a full sentence. These jottings are random thoughts and ideas.
Keeping the page you have just written in front of you, begin to follow the directions below. Use the words and phrases on your page to help follow these instructions. After it is all written find ways to include any unused items on your original sheet of paper.
• The first word you say should be the name of the deceased.
This is not about you. Do not begin by saying, I loved my brother. Instead say, Larry was my older brother.
• The next sentence or two should explain and then describe your relationship.
Larry teased me every day of my childhood and inspired me everyday of my adulthood.
• Summarize in one or two sentences the essence of Larry's life.
Larry was a good husband and father and a devoted employee of the publishing company where he worked as a production manager for 24 years.
• Now tell the audience something they don't know about the deceased. Reveal some accomplishments.
You may not have known that Larry was on his college fencing team and that he won several national competitions. Also, Larry was voted employee of the year by his fellow-workers just a couple of years ago.
• Reveal some character traits, humor encouraged.
You always saw Larry looking neat and clean. I am here to tell you that this man took two showers every day and often changed his shirt during the day. Some might think that he was obsessive; he thought he was setting a good example for those around him. In our family we called him Mr. Clean.
• Create a scene that will permit audience members to visualize the deceased.
You know if Larry were sitting there with you now he'd have his hand under his chin, as usual, and he'd have his serious face on. He'd be studying everyone who was speaking. Probably he'd be wearing his blue tie that he saved for funerals and weddings. As soon as the service is over Larry would rip off the tie -- he never was comfortable in ties -- and rush home for his sneakers so he could go for a run, or maybe a jog. Oh, and if you saw him in his house you know where he'd be sitting -- on that great big recliner, with two pillows propped under his head and he would be reading USA Today and the TV would be on but he'd have no idea what program he was watching.
• Describe an incident that will enlighten the audience.
Last month Larry and I went to a train auction. Not toy trains. Real railroad cars. Larry had no intention of buying them but he enjoyed hanging out with guys who did really buy trains. He wanted me to come along with him to share the excitement. I actually was bored but it was clear that my brother was in all his glory inspecting the trains beforehand, chatting up the engineers who were there, and then watching the bidding.
• If you are religious this is the place to make a religious statement.
Larry is in a good place now. I know he's with our mom and dad and I know he'll be watching over all of us.
• Say what you will most miss about the person.
I'm going to miss Larry's Sunday morning phone calls -- we spoke to each other every Sunday morning for as long as I can remember.
• Gently and humorously say what you won't miss.
Now that he's gone, I hope I don't start feeling a need to go to railroad car auctions.
• Put your feelings into one or two sentences.
I feel so lost and so bereaved right now. I can't imagine going about my daily life without my big brother.
• Say how his life has touched and influenced you.
Because of Larry I feel guilty if I don't take a shower every day, I feel guilty if I drive in to the city and don't take a railroad train in, and I learned how to be a good husband and a playful dad by watching him.
• Mention what you have learned from the person, what he has taught you by example.
In addition to extreme cleanliness Larry taught me to be a stand-up guy and take responsibility for whatever needed to be done. By observing his life I learned how to be a decent family man and a hard working employee. Thank you, Larry.
• Death tends to get us to think about life. We think about what is really important and what we most value. Talk about the values of the deceased.
As you know, Larry really valued hard work. He cared about trying hard and he put all his energy into everything he did, whether it was raking the leaves, going to a meeting for work, or preparing a sandwich.
• Say how his death has touched and influenced you.
Larry went through a couple of months of serious illness and he never once complained. Instead, he cheered up everyone who came to visit. He told us not to feel sorry for him. He wanted us to tell him jokes. I now have a huge repertoire of knock-knock jokes.
• Mention any family members or close friends who deserve recognition.
My nephews, Howard and Gary, and of course my sister-in-law, Linda, are amazing people and deserve so much recognition for all they did during these past months. I know you join me in wishing Linda, Howard, and Gary an easy road through bereavement and a life filled with good memories.
• Again, mention how you feel -- sad? Lost? Relieved? Empty? Exhausted?
This has all happened so quickly it's hard to believe that at Thanksgiving dinner none of us thought about Larry's death or illness. I think I am still stunned.
• This is the place for a particular quotation or bible passage or brief poem. The reading you select should:
Describe how you are feeling, or
Describe how the deceased led his life, or
Offer courage and inspiration to the listeners.
You have my permission to quote from Solace: Finding Your Way Through Grief and Learning to Live Again. Here are some sample quotes you may wish to use. I've slightly modified and changed some words -- feel free to do the same -- to better suit your circumstance.
Think about making the world a better place because of one or two little things you might do in Larry's memory. Acts of kindness go a long way.
Larry would wish your days to be filled with kindness and goodness and your nights to be filled with secure sleep and sweet peace.

When you finish writing the eulogy, practice saying it aloud. Read it several times. Insert a new sentence or two and eliminate any sentences that don't seem right. Time the eulogy with your watch while reading it aloud. If there are several speakers at the service your eulogy should not be more than 3 minutes. If you are the only speaker you may go on longer, but not long enough to bore people.

It is a good idea to use a recording device. Then you will have a permanent record of all eulogies at the funeral. You can make copies to distribute to friends and family. Throughout the mourning process listening to the eulogies will provide comfort. Later generations will regard the eulogies as important family/genealogic history.
©2009 Roberta Temes Ph.D., author of Solace: Finding Your Way Through Grief and Learning to Live Again

Author Bio
Roberta Temes, Ph.D., author of Solace: Finding Your Way Through Grief and Learning to Live Again, is a noted psychotherapist who has taught classes in death, dying, and bereavement at schools such as Downstate Medical School and CUNY. She is the author of several books, including the award-winning Living with an Empty Chair: A Guide Through Grief and The Tapping Cure. She lives in Scotch Plains, New Jersey.

For more information please visit and
Finding Your Way Through Grief and Learning to Live Again
By Roberta Temes Ph.D.
Published by AMACOM
July 2009; $14.95US; 978-08144-1463-7

Friday, September 25, 2009

Book Review: Passion and Pleasure in London

Passion and Pleasure in London by Melody Thomas

Description: Winter is all but abandoned when her father dies and her mother is left insane. She is responsible for more than just herself and her brother - she is responsible for her village. Imagine her surprise when her newest "target" isn't just a rich man coming through the village but instead someone who seems to be here to stay.

But what man would want a thief who has secrets? Can Rory Jameson the true heir to the local estate be that man?

Thoughts: I wasn't sure that I would like a book where the woman was a thief and the man was a former spy working for the Crown. A lot of those books have way too much detail about things that don't entertain me. But I was pleasantly surprised. This book focused on all the things it should have. Their romance. Their lives. Their families. It made it an interesting and quick read.

What genre would you consider this?
Historical Romance


Thursday, September 24, 2009

The Well-Read Commuter reviews The Castaways

The Castaways
By: Elin Hilderbrand
Narrated By: Kate Hale

What This Book Is About:
Greg and Tess MacAvoy are one of four prominent Nantucket couples who count each other as best friends. As pillars of their close-knit community, the MacAvoys, Kapenashes, Drakes, and Wheelers are important to their friends and neighbors, and especially to each other. But just before the beginning of another idyllic summer, Greg and Tess are killed when their boat capsizes during an anniversary sail. As the warm weather approaches and the island mourns their loss, nothing can prepare the MacAvoy's closest friends for what will be revealed.

What Did You Think About This Book:
Elin Hilderbrand is a seasoned author that knows how to take a reader on a great ride that you won’t be ready to get off of at the end. This was my first of Hilderbrand’s books which are always set in Nantucket. At first I thought that narrator Kate Hale’s voice might be a little too syrupy sweet for my tastes, but it did not take me long to get very invested in this multi-layered story with complex and well-developed characters. I was so engrossed in the story I pulled over in traffic to retrieve the next disk that had fallen out of my reach because I could not wait to hear how the story continued to progress. As the couples each delve into the mysterious death of their good friends the inner complexities of adult friendships are explored. This was a great read superbly written and narrated.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Author Post by Linda Weaver Clarke

Mix a Happy-go-lucky Bachelor with a Roaring 20s Woman and You Have: Elena, Woman of Courage

The “Roaring Twenties” was a time of great change, when women raised their hemlines and bobbed their hair. It was a time of adventure, courage, and independence.

In the 1920s, the new generation spoke a language that their parents didn’t understand. They had words like: Cat’s pajamas! Ah, horsefeathers! Attaboy! Baloney! You slay me! When referring to a woman, they used doll, tomato, and bearcat. When a person was in love, they were goofy. If a person was a fool, they were a sap. And when a woman wasn’t in the mood for romance, she would say, “The bank’s closed.” Elena, Woman of Courage: A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho (ISBN: 978-1-58982-545-1) is filled with courage, romance, and humor.

When a woman settles into a strict conservative town as the newest doctor, a slew of problems begin to rise. The town is not ready for a female doctor, let alone one so strong and independent. Elena Yeates, the town’s newest doctor, must struggle to prove herself in this western town, while keeping her composure, poise, and femininity. As she fights to prove herself, the town’s most eligible bachelor finds it a challenge to see if he can win her heart. With the 1920’s rise of women’s rights, this novel gives you great insight at the struggles women had to go through, all the while watching a young love blossom!

“Elena, Woman of Courage is a wonderful book full of history, passion and romance, as well as a touch of suspense and humor,” wrote Kim Atchue-Cusella, Book Loons. “The characters are matched perfectly and it is sweet to watch romance develop between John and Elena. This was the last of five books in the series and it has been a joy to watch the family grow and prosper.”

Elena is a courageous woman who went to college during a time when women were not encouraged to be educated beyond high school. The 1920s was a time of change when women began fighting for their rights. After getting her degree as a doctor, she moves to the West to set up her own practice. When she arrives in a small town in Idaho, she meets Mr. Anderson who opposes her from day one but Elena’s stubborn nature will not allow her to give up. In her fight for equality, she learns to love the people of Bear Lake Valley and realizes she has found a home at last.

When Elena meets John Roberts, a rugged and good-looking farmer, she does not trust his intentions. As she gets to know him, she finds that he has deep respect for the education of women and abhors prejudice. John is the son of Gilbert and Melinda, but there is one thing that stands in the way of happiness. He is terrified of marriage and commitment. He is known as the “Happy-go-lucky Bachelor.”

“Linda Weaver Clarke displays an easy and excellent style of writing, blending adventure/romance/history/humor and courage. A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho is an instant classic and should put this author on the literary map all over the world. A MUST read!”– Page One Literary Book Review

About the Author
Linda Weaver Clarke travels throughout the United States, teaching a “Family Legacy Workshop,” encouraging others to turn their family history and autobiography into a variety of interesting stories. Her novel “Melinda and the Wild West” was a Semi-Finalist in the “Reviewers Choice Awards 2007.” The historical fiction series, A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho will include the following novels: Melinda and the Wild West, Edith and the Mysterious Stranger, Jenny’s Dream, David and the Bear Lake Monster, and Elena, Woman of Courage.

“Elena, Woman of Courage” (ISBN: 978-1-58982-545-1, American Book Publishing, 2009). For more information, visit Publicity contact:

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Book Review: I Used to Know That, I Before E, My Grammar and I... Or Should That Be Me?

My Grammar and I... or Should That Be Me? by Caroline Taggart and J. A. Wines
i Before e (except after c) by Judy Parkinson
I Used to Know That by Caroline Taggart

Description: Part of the "I Used To Know That" series this is perfect for parents and other adults who have forgotten everything they knew from school. It reteaches you in concise, quick lessons all the quick remembering tricks you learned in grade school.

Thoughts: I usually review books seperatley but for this series it made more sense to talk about all of them. I really enjoyed this series. It isn't a group of books I would sit down on a hot summer night and read. But instead when I wanted to read something that gave me something back - taught me something I might sit down and peruse for 15 minutes. The perfect coffee table books. Or bathroom reading books (if you are one of those sort of people). It reminds me of all the things I forgot and all the things I should remember.

And I enjoyed that. I hope you do to!

What genre would you consider this?


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Book Review: Comfort Food

Comfort Food by Jake Jacobs

Description: Gus Simpson raised her children on her own and began to star in a very popular cooking show. Now that her children are raised she doesnt' have to concentrate on them, but instead on herself. But her cooking show which has defined her for years seems to be on the rocks.

The only thing that can bring back her popularity is a new idea. And she comes up with the perfect one. A family cooking show. She brings her daughters, her daughter's ex boyfriend, and friends to her show and includes them. It is a smash hit. But being together in this manner means that things get brought out that maybe none of them wanted. Can they deal with it as a family?

Thoughts: For me this book is all about family. Family isn't just who you are biologically related to but whoever you love and include in your life. The fact that they all need to lean on each other to get what they need out of life is really important. This book covers it all death, life, marriage, old-age, success, - everything someone wants out of life. It is here in its own special way!

What genre would you consider this?
Family Dynamics


Saturday, September 19, 2009

Author Post: Laura Dave Author of The Divorce Party: A Novel

5 Reasons to Celebrate a Break-Up
By Laura Dave
Author of The Divorce Party: A Novel

This weekend, I am going to my favorite place on earth: Big Sur, California (pop: 1,049) -- a beautiful town on the Monterey Peninsula. In anticipation, I pulled out my books by Henry Miller, a writer closely associated with the area. As I flipped through the pages, I came across a saying from Miller's lover, the author Anais Nin, that I had handwritten into the margin. Nin wrote: Love never dies a natural death. It dies because we don't know how to replenish its source. It dies of blindness and errors and betrayals. It dies of illness and wounds; it dies of weariness, of withering, of tarnishing.

Running my fingers over these words, I started thinking of my most recent novel, The Divorce Party, in which two women find themselves fighting not to let love die. And I recalled all of the people I spoke with over the course of working on The Divorce Party who found themselves fighting that same fight -- and sometimes deciding it was better to let it go. These are five reasons that they shared with me, and to which I return when someone close to me is struggling with a break-up.

1. Some Relationships Are Meant To Be Seasonal

Ty, a man I spoke with in Cleveland, was devastated when his first relationship after his divorce ended badly. He wanted to marry his new partner. But after closer inspection of their relationship -- she was only recently separated herself, they had conflicting ideas about marriage and family, they had different values -- he acknowledged that what he liked best about their relationship was that it provided distraction and comfort during a mutually difficult time. "We have passion, but, when I'm honest with myself, I don't know what we have in common on the other side of all of our drama," Ty said.

In Ty's candor, he has hit on something that is important to remember: some relationships are meant to be seasonal. They get us through a tricky period, they make us feel alive again. But that doesn't necessarily translate into two people being compatible for longer commitment. A psychologist, who I spoke with after Ty, said it eloquently: "Feeling love or passion is not enough to sustain a long-term relationship. Liking your partner is just as important. Ask yourself: do you enjoy spending time together? If you do, find a way through the inevitable problems. If you don't, ask yourself if your relationship has served its purpose."

2. The Wrong Person Can Make Us Feel Wrong

A couple in New Mexico, Cassie and Jason, met and married in three months. It was a whirlwind. Sadly, after the dust settled, Cassie realized that her husband liked the whirlwind more than being married. "As much as I bend myself into a pretzel to make him happy," Cassie said. "He criticizes me and makes me feel like I'm failing him."

It is human to feel that it's your fault when a relationship goes awry, especially if you have a partner who is more interested in finger-pointing than getting to the crux of what is ailing the two of you. But there is a difference between working hard on a relationship and working too hard. If someone is constantly meeting your efforts with endless negativity, it may be time to consider changing the conversation.

3. The Rope Gets Awfully Heavy . . .

When I spoke with a book club in New Jersey last year, we ended up discussing what makes relationships work. We came to an image of two people on either side of a long rope, holding their ends up. The key is that both people don't drop the rope at the same time -- that if the rope stays raised, even on one side, the relationship stays safe. I like this image because it suggests the mutual caretaking inherent to a good relationship. Which led to one of the book club members confessing the flipside: "My first marriage was over when I realized I was the only one holding up that rope. I never got a chance to rest, to reboot. It became too much."

No one can be the only one to hold the rope, not all of the time. We all -- at the end of the day -- need someone to help. If we find ourselves moving on from someone who wasn't, that -- in the end of a new day -- can be a big relief.

4. The Universe Sometimes Has More Interesting Plans For Us Than We Have For Ourselves

A woman I spoke with in Oregon took me on a tour of her home. It was her dream home, and she proudly explained that she wakes up there with the feeling that she's exactly where she's supposed to be. But she only found this peacefulness on the other side of a devastating heartbreak. "I fought like cats and dogs to stay with someone who was wrong for me," she said. "Thankfully, I lost that fight and ended up in the right life."

This reminds me of something crucial: we're not always wise witnesses to our own lives. Sometimes, in spite of tightly clinging to an idea of how we want our life to be, the universe has a plan for us that is braver and better than the one we had for ourselves. The good news is, when we stay open to it, the universe often finds a way to deliver us there.

5. You Get To Bring You Wherever You Go Next

I was surprised when a male book club member in California announced proudly that Sleepless In Seattle was his favorite movie. He loved the sentiment expressed by the radio host who brings the Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan characters together. She said: people who truly loved once are far more likely to love again.

I stand by this sentiment, and believe in its truth. The kindness and goodness and joy -- the ability to love -- that you give to a partner lives inside you. If the person sitting across the table from you can't accept those gifts, be excited. As hard as it may feel, be excited to give the best pieces of yourself to someone who is able to accept them. As the man in California wisely said: "happy endings don't always come in the form that we hope for. But, for those of us who believe in them, and work for them, they do come."

©2009 Laura Dave, author of The Divorce Party: A Novel

Author Bio
Laura Dave is the author of the acclaimed novels The Divorce Party and London Is the Best City in America. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Glamour, Self, Redbook, ESPN the Magazine, and The New York Observer. Dave graduated from the University of Pennsylvania. In August, Cosmopolitan magazine named her as one of the eight "Fun and Fearless Phenoms" of 2008. She lives in California.

For more information, please visit

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Book Review: Cleopatra's Daughter

Cleopatra's Daughter by Michelle Moran

Description: This is the story of Cleopatra and Mark Antony's children told from the perspective of their daughter Selene. She has been captured by Octavian and taken back to Rome. She is forced from Egypt to live in a new land. Neither a slave, not a freed person she doesn't know where she is to go next. Meanwhile in Rome there is a rebellion going on with the slaves. Can she survive the political minefield that is going on?

Thoughts: I haven't spent a lot of time reading about Roman history because it tends to be told from a dry perspective. But I love Rome (I was there a few years back). It is beautiful and the history is amazing. For me this book was the perfect foil for the backdrop of Rome. It was intriguing telling a story that I hadn't heard a million times before (I didn't even know that Selene had existed). I really enjoyed it and would recommend it to anyone who likes historical fiction!

What genre would you consider this?
Historical Fiction


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Well-Read Commuter Reviews The Ravens

The Ravens
By: George Dawes Green
Narrated By: Maggi Meg Reed & Robert Petkoff

What Is This Book About:
When Shaw McBride and Romeo Zderko drive into the small town of Brunswick , Georgia, their only thought is to fix their car's leaky right tire and continue on to Key West, Florida, away from their dead-end jobs as computer technicians in Ohio. But when Shaw discovers that the 318 million dollar Georgia State Lottery has just been claimed by an ordinary Georgia family, he sees an opportunity - he and Romeo will blackmail the Boatwright family for half their winnings and ditch their deadbeat lives for good.

What Did You Think About This Book:
I thought the concept of this book was so interesting. The Boatwright family is barely hanging on in a house that is about to be foreclosed on and then their fortunes change. Overnight they are the winners of the 318 million dollar lottery. However, two grifters have turned their lives upside down and not only is winning the lottery the worst thing that has ever happened to them, they might no live long enough to collect their winnings. The adrenaline flows right up to the end of this book as the story smashes the normal flow of a story, refusing to taper off a t the end and leave the reader with a nice, neat package. Like the Boatwright family who is being held captive, the reader will also have no idea what Shaw and Romeo have in store through the unpredictable twists and turns. This is not your average crime story. A fantastic read and the audio book is a treasure with dual narration by the seasoned voices of Maggi Meg Reed and Robert Petkoff.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Book Review: I Used to Know That

By Caroline Taggart
Publisher: Readers Digest
Publication Date: 2009
Price $14.95
Pages: 175
Description: Part of the "I Used To Know That" series this is perfect for parents and other adults who have forgotten everything they knew from school. It reteaches you in concise, quick lessons all the things you should know after coming out of high school.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Book Review: Sleepwalking in Daylight

Sleepwalking in Daylight by Elizabeth Flock

What does it mean when someone who identifies herself as a mother starts to realize that she isn't just a mother. When she starts to think something is missing? In this case Samantha Friedman abandons her family emotionally and starts to focus on herself.

Meanwhile her teenage daughter Camille who is adopted starts to begin her on her own path of destruction. Drugs, sex, and doing anything that can hurt herself. Can Sam figure out what Camille is doing in time? What about her father - is he willing to face what Camille has become and his wife is busy doing?

Thoughts: This is a sobering book about what happens when you wake up one day as if your life is a dream and you realize that things aren't as good as you thought they might have been. Instead of confronting that feeling you continue to live your life on the margins - looking for that fulfillment. The lack of communication in a family though affects so much more than yourself. I am not saying that Camille's actions couldn't have occured in the "perfect" family. But instead the mother's own emotional journey made Camille a little more in the shadows - leading her away from what should have been something that the family could have shared.

This was a interesting book, not exactly a feel good summer read, but at the same time worth reading all the same.

What genre would you consider this?
Family Dynamics


Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Well-Read Commuter Reviews Homer’s Odyssey

Homer’s Odyssey
A Fearless Feline Tale or How I Learned About Love and Life With A Blind Wonder Cat

By Gwen Cooper

What This Book Was About:
The last thing Gwen Cooper wanted was another cat. She already had two, not to mention a phenomenally underpaying job and a recently broken heart. Then Gwen’s veterinarian called with a story about a three-week-old blind kitten who’d been abandoned. It was love at first sight.Everyone warned Gwen that Homer would always be an “underachiever,” never as playful or independent as other cats. But the kitten nobody believed in quickly grew into a three-pound dynamo, a tiny daredevil with a giant heart who eagerly made friends with every human who crossed his path. Homer scaled seven-foot bookcases with ease and leapt five feet into the air to catch flies in mid-buzz. He survived being trapped alone for days after 9/11 in an apartment near the World Trade Center, and even saved Gwen’s life when he chased off an intruder who broke into their home in the middle of the night. However, it was Homer’s unswerving loyalty, his infinite capacity for love, and his joy in the face of all obstacles that inspired Gwen daily and transformed her life. And by the time she met the man she would marry, she realized Homer had taught her the most important lesson of all: Love isn’t something you see with your eyes.

What Did You Think About This Book:
I loved this book. It was both deeply touching and laugh out loud funny. By chance, I started this book in the middle and read it to the end and then went back to start at Chapter One. Once I started reading in the middle, I could not stop. Even though I am a “pet person,” I would dare even those among us who choose to live their lives without furniture covered by cat hair or a livingroom full of dog toys not to love the story of this tiny adventurer. At the conclusion of this book I felt as though the author had given us a gift by sharing Homer’s story and what a tale it is! The best part is that Homer is still alive and well and living in New York City so there is no sad, sappy ending here. This book is a must read for anyone that has ever loved a pet and would make a great Holiday gift for the pet people in your life.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Book Review: All of Me

All of Me by Lori Wilde

Jillian Samuels is an attorney who has had everything go wrong. She has quit her job and is moving to a small town to take control of a house that she was left by an old friend. What she doesn't know is there is someone already living there. Tuck Manning was an architect in his former life. Since losing his wife he has become mostly a home body. And this small town and the small cottage he has is the only thing that makes life still worth living. He can't believe when Jillian comes to town saying that it is HER house. He will definitely fight for it if he can.

But once they start to spend time together they realize that maybe being in a relationship will be better than arguing about who gets the house!

Thoughts: I liked it. It was a good romance. Both had been hurt before and where scared to let themselves open up to the chance at another romance. It was fun and flirty and yet had a touch of realism (a man who had loved and lost the woman of his dreams opening up for another one). I really enjoyed the older man who wanted to play matchmaker even though he had done wrong with his own daughter. It is a great fun summer read for anyone interested.

What genre would you consider this?


Monday, September 7, 2009

Book Review: Danger in a Red Dress

Danger in a Red Dress by Christina Dodd

Description: Hannah Grey can't wait to take care of Carrick Manly's mother Melinda. Hannah's life has been in an uproar since her last patient died and when she meets Melinda she realizes what a sweet soul she is. But Carrick soon begins to show his true colors Hannah worries about what is going on.

Carrick's unknown brother Gabriel has been hired to watch over Hannah. As soon as Gabriel sees her he can't help but be attracted to her. When things start to fall apart who will Gabriel stand by - his brother or this woman that he barely knows but is very attracted to.

Thoughts:This was a fun conclusion to several series that Christina Dodd has been working on. It ties in Gabriel who's sisters were in one series, with the Manly brothers. The mystery of what is going on with the father's money is also a nice little wrap up that brings the pair together.

To truely enjoy this book though I would read some of the others in the series first!

What genre would you consider this?


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Book Review: Forbidden Nights with a Vampire

Forbidden Nights with a Vampire by Kerrelyn Sparks

Description: Vanda Barkowski used to be a member of Roman's herim. But now she has her freedom to do what she wants nad she runs a nightclub for her fellow vampires. Her hot temper continues to get her in trouble and when several former employees make complaints about her she is forced to go to therapy. And who is her sponsor - but Phil Jones - the former bodygaurd that used to make her hot and bothered.

Phil has always like Vanda and can't believe he now has his chance to spend time with her. But there is much more at stake then just their romance as someone seems to be out to get all of them.

Thoughts:This series is overall a good one. I have enjoyed it and think that the stories are enjoyable and add to it the overarching story of a bad guy getting good guys and you have something that ties it all together. Is it my favorite series ever? No. Some of the characters are hard to get into. Like Vanda who is a bit hard and you don't know why for a while. Eventually they come into their own though.

What genre would you consider this?
Paranormal Romance


Friday, September 4, 2009

Book Feature: i before e (except after c)

By Judy Parkinson
Publisher: Readers Digest
Publication Date: 2009
Price $14.95
Pages: 175
Description: Part of the "I Used To Know That" series this is perfect for parents and other adults who have forgotten everything they knew from school. It reteaches you in concise, quick lessons all the quick remembering tricks you learned in grade school.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Book Review: The Greatest Knight

The Greatest Knight by Elizabeth Chadwick

Description: William Marshal starts of a penniless knight and eventually becomes a favorite of a Queen (and her sons). Queen Elanor of Aquitaine finds William when he risks his life for hers (as any good knight would do) and she realizes she has found a man whose loyalty can rival none.

William becomes a mainstay in the life of the Queen and her children. He follows them through their travails and becomes an integral part of the politics of that time. But life in court is never easy and William risks his life by being a favorite.

Thoughts:I like historical fiction. The problem is I find some of it to be too dry to keep me entertained. At the same time I don't want anything that doesn't have enough history and fact in it to keep me also intrigued. This was a nice blend of both. The story was one I didn't know anything about - so I wasn't sure if I would like it. It is also told from the male perspective - again something that I don't always like. But for me this story - told over years of William's life - was a great piece of historical fiction.

For anyone who likes this time period - I would recommend this book!

What genre would you consider this?
Historical Fiction