March 10, 2015

Book Review: Losing the Ice by Jennifer Comeaux (Book Tour)

Summary(Goodreads)
Courtney and Josh are in love and excited to finally compete as skating partners. When they take the ice for their first competition, they want to show everyone, especially Josh's family, they are the perfect pair. 

But ice is slippery, and one misstep puts all their dreams in jeopardy. Now they must show each other both their love and their partnership are strong enough to survive.

My Thoughts
I always have so much fun when I revisit this world Jennifer has created. In Losing the Ice, Courtney and Josh are getting ready for their first competition and I thought she did such a good job of capturing how nervous and excited they were and how big a step was for them to start skating together after having had different partners most of their lives. 

I liked that and that the author didn't gloss over how hard it for Court and Josh to adapt to each other, and how their love and trust was shaken with the accident - not because it wasn't there but because it was a difficult time and their relationship (on and off the ice) new in many ways. 

Also liked seeing Josh's sister again and see her develop as a character a bit more. She might not be happy with all of Josh choices, but she wants him to be happy and she proves that. 

All in all I thought it was a good transition between the previous book and what comes next. And it was also fun to catch up with Sergei, Em and their family. I really love that Liza and Courtney are friends and that they support each other, even if Liza wasn't in this book all that much. The twins were super adorbs as usual. 

Favorite Quotes (our of order to avoid spoilers):
He smiled and wrapped one arm around me. “This day is my favorite everything.”

“If you weren’t strong, you wouldn’t be here right now, about to compete two months after a terrifying injury. A lot of people wouldn’t come back from that.” I turned his face toward me. “I believe in you, and I believe in us.”
He gazed at me a long minute. “I just want to be the partner you deserve. The man you deserve.”


“This don’t look like Mommy’s mac and cheese,” she said. That’s because Mommy is a gourmet cook who makes the pasta from scratch and grates the cheese herself. 
“It’s different, but it’s still yummy,” I said. 
She wrinkled her nose and peered closer at the bowl. “Why it orange?”


This review is part of the Losing the Ice Tour

About the Author
Jennifer Comeaux is a tax accountant by day, writer by night. There aren’t any ice rinks near her home in south Louisiana, but she’s a die-hard figure skating fan and loves to write stories of romance set in the world of competitive skating. 

One of her favorite pastimes is traveling to competitions, where she can experience all the glitz and drama that inspire her writing. Jennifer loves to hear from readers!

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March 8, 2015

Book Review: Wicked My Love by Susanna Ives

Summary (GoodReads)
A smooth-talking rogue and a dowdy financial genius...

Handsome, silver-tongued politician Lord Randall doesn't get along with his bank partner, the financially brilliant but hopelessly frumpish Isabella St. Vincent. Ever since she was his childhood nemesis, he's tried—and failed—to get the better of her.

Make a perfectly wicked combination...

When both Randall's political career and their mutual bank interests are threatened by scandal, he has to admit he needs Isabella's help. They set off on a madcap scheme to set matters right. With her wits and his charm, what could possibly go wrong? Only a volatile mutual attraction that's catching them completely off guard... 


My Thoughts: 
I really liked the idea of Wicked, My Love. The fact that Isabella was a math genius and basically ran the bank herself while Randall was off doing his political stuff, it sounded like a lot of fun. And I appreciated that she actually wanted to talk about stocks and financial stuff all the time. But... the rest of the story fell a little flat. 

I never liked Randall all that much, plus it didn't make much sense to me that he was always slipping into this other persona of "Randy" whenever he and Isabella had to be 'undercover'. Randy was very, very crass, not the kind of person a proper and snobbish politician would assume. Or at least, it didn't fell organic to me. 

Isabella was starry eyed to the point of being foolish, but she was likable most of the time otherwise; and I did feel for her and how insecure she felt because she never managed to please her father. But I didn't believe her with Randall, didn't believe they were meant to be and that's kind of essential as this was a romance. 

Also, the names the author gave the different places Randall and Isabella visited? I think she was trying to be clever with her world play but it sounded kind of ridiculous. 

March 1, 2015

Book Review: What a Lady Demands by Ashlyn Macnamara

Summary (GoodReads)
Viscount Lindenhurst cannot seem to find a governess who meets his impossible standards—until Cecelia Sanford becomes the first woman to interrupt the widower’s brooding in years. Lind had returned home from the Napoleonic wars, broken in body and soul and longing for his wife’s embrace, only to find her changed. 

Before they could reconcile, an accident struck their son and claimed her life. Now enter Cecelia, with her soft curves and sharp tongue—a tempting distraction, it is true, but not a welcome one. 

Past the usual marrying age and haunted by a scandal of her own, Cecelia soon finds herself caring for both the child and the man. The viscount is brittle and even abrupt at times, yet she cannot deny the attraction that stirs her body in his presence. 

Moved by the deep sense of abandonment that tortures his soul, Cecelia aches to fully awaken Lind’s heart from its rancorous slumber—if she can just keep their pasts from destroying a second chance at love.


My Thoughts:
Similarly than with What a Lady Craves, What a Lady Demands left me a little cold because once again we are dealing with flimsy reasoning and an unlikable hero. Cecelia is not prepared, at all, to be a governess, but she run off from her brother to do just that - all because of a scandal they take forever to explain and that doesn't make much sense - and though she's nice to the kid and the kid likes her, she still is very unorthodox and it makes no sense that Lind would have hired her. 

Lind is full of resentments and guilt and he takes them out on the kid, that he is out for vengeance is understandable, but he never stops to see that he has gone so far that he's hurting his son who really just wants his father's approval. 

So, again, not someone that was easy to like. And his actions didn't make much sense, he was very hot and cold with everyone around him and I don't like that in a romance hero. I did find it a little more interesting than the previous book, which is something.

But, still, not something I would like to revisit soon. 
starstar

February 28, 2015

Book Review: What A Lady Craves by Ashlyn Macnamara

Summary (GoodReads)
Henrietta Upperton is about to marry Alexander Sanford when he rushes off to India to salvage his family’s fortune. Then comes the devastating news that he has wed another. Eight agonizing years later, a storm washes Alexander ashore—injured, widowed, and hunted—and one glimpse of his ruggedly handsome face reawakens the desire Henrietta thought she had buried deep inside. Her body still yearns for his touch, but she’s determined not let him wound her again . . . not this time.

For Alexander, honor always comes first. But only now does he realize that when given the choice between two virtuous deeds, he picked the wrong one. On the run with his life in tatters and a pair of daughters in tow, Alexander burns for Henrietta. He knows he does not deserve forgiveness. And yet he longs to wrap his arms around her warm body once again. What’s more, he is sure the lady craves the same


My Thoughts:
I had been looking forward to What a Lady Craves for a while now, I just loved the idea of this second-chance romance but I have to say that the book turned into a bit of a dud.

I liked Henrietta well enough, she was nice and kind and wanted to move on with her life, but also didn't fool herself into thinking she had no feelings left for Alexander. She was nice to his daughters and sought to treat them equally.

But Alexander, well, he just wasn't nice. He favored a daughter over the other (for a reason that becomes clear very quickly but doesn't makes me what he does any good), and his whole reasoning is so flimsy and silly. I mean, the thing that made him break off with Henrietta? I get why he felt compelled to do it, but I thought he choose foolishly what to do and let everyone pay the price, starting with Henrietta herself.

It just seemed like there was not much to the story. And the hero was unlikable, and didn't actually redeem himself in my book.
starstar

February 23, 2015

John Green and the Non Apology


I've been pondering what to write about this whole ordeal with the John Green misattributing a quote to himself - for years, mind you - that was actually written by a 14 year old fan.

I wanted to talk about how much plagiarism hurts, how big of a violation it feels like, but when I tried to write that post I was just ranting for about three pages. Hardly conductive to a good exercise in writing. So instead I decided to put my scientific training to use and focus on the facts.

And after reading the multiple accounts and varied opinions on the subject (I recommend reading Bibliodaze's and Cuddlebugery's posts about it), well... there are three things that don't ring quite true. 

Found at reactiongifs.com
1. John Green didn't know he hadn't written the line until recently. 
I don't buy this. How can an author not know what he has written or not? See, I might not be a big, published author but I am a writer and you can bet your ass I remember the stuff I have written.

Particularly the really good stuff that just seems to fit perfectly? yup, those kind of linger with you. I can remember my favorite line or scene of all the stories I've written - about 40 between fanfiction and original stuff - so yeah, I just can't buy that he didn't know.

2. No one noticed before now.
Found at reactiongifs.org
See I'm a fangirl of many fandoms and if fandoms are good at something that is NOTICING STUFF, I can't remember how many times Sarah Dessen has published a book and within hours of publications we had Master Lists of all the easter eggs she dropped for long time fans. 

Libba Bay has commented that continuity errors that escaped her, her copy writer and her editor, have been discovered by fans in a similar fashion. 

So, I don't buy that no one noticed before, I just don't... which ties in with my third point:

3. No one spoke up before, save for the real author and her friend. 
reactiongifs.com
This is really fishy, as I said, fans speak out. In the age of Internet, I can't believe that this went on for close to six years without someone other than the original author of the quote and her close friend speaking out or just looking into it.

Reports said that the author got negative emails about her claiming the quote, so WTF? why no one commented it on a large venue before? Also, she tried to contact DFTBA and John Green several times to no avail!

It seems like John Green's fans were just sweeping it under the rug. 


And, to top it all off, there was never a concrete apology, not a public one which is the type this kind of thing deserves. His video amounts to an Oopsie! like this was something that just happened, not like something that he was actively doing for years. It's not an error of omission, it's negligent. 

And so, my disenchantment with the Nerdfighter community and John Green (of whom I can't say I ever liked 100%) continues.

But that's just me, let me know what you guys think.


Also, thanks to Sandy @ Pirate Penguin Reads for helping me find gifs. All gifs were found with google /bing image search and do not belong to me.

Note: Yup, I'm not liking to John Green's video because I don't think he deserves to get more views out of it, but Cuddlebuggery posted it on their entry, if anyone is interested.