Thursday, October 23, 2014

A Rogue by Any Other Name

A Rogue by Any Other Name (The Rules of Scoundrels, #1)Title: A Rogue by Any Other Name
Author: Sarah MacLean
Series: The Rules of Scoundrels #1
Read: October 21, 2014

Summary: What a scoundrel wants, a scoundrel gets...

A decade ago, the Marquess of Bourne was cast from society with nothing but his title. Now a partner in London’s most exclusive gaming hell, the cold, ruthless Bourne will do whatever it takes to regain his inheritance—including marrying perfect, proper Lady Penelope Marbury.

A broken engagement and years of disappointing courtships have left Penelope with little interest in a quiet, comfortable marriage, and a longing for something more. How lucky that her new husband has access to such unexplored pleasures.

Bourne may be a prince of London’s underworld, but he vows to keep Penelope untouched by its wickedness—a challenge indeed as the lady discovers her own desires, and her willingness to wager anything for them... even her heart.

Review: As you may remember, I got this book in one of my Quarterly boxes and it was the first time I had heard of this series or author. I knew it was going to be a romance novel but not much else. The name of the series led me to believe it may be a raunchy but that's about all I started with. Luckily, I was pleasantly surprised. It was pretty basic for a romance novel but the characters were developed enough for me to connect with them and there wasn't too much raunch (just the right amount!)

I enjoyed that this story was set in the 1800s with the ladies and lords of that time. It gave the story a little more depth since courting and marriage was handled very differently back then. I was also ssurprisedby Bourne's job at that time period because I don't know much about the gambling dens of that time but now that I think about it, it makes sense.

The attraction and passion between the two main characters was obvious and while the lack of communication which resulted in sexual tension was redundant at times, I believe that overall, it worked. This is the first in the series and we got a little teaser about what the next book will be like in the epilogue but I'm not sure I will pursue it. If I need an easy, well done, period romance, I may seek it out but it's not going on the TBR list as of now.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery
Title: Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery
Author: Robert Kolker
Read: September 30, 2014

Summary: Award-winning investigative reporter Robert Kolker delivers a humanizing account of the true-life search for a serial killer still at large on Long Island and presents the first detailed look at the shadow world of online escorts, where making a living is easier than ever, and the dangers remain all too real. A triumph of reporting, a riveting narrative, and "a lashing critique of how society and the police let five young women down" (Dwight Garner, The New York Times), Lost Girls is a portrait of unsolved murders in an idyllic part of America, of the underside of the Internet, and of the secrets we keep without admitting to ourselves that we keep them. goodreads

Review: I have to admit, I had no idea these cases were going on over the last few years. I kept wondering if these stories were related to "the cragislist killer" who I had heard of, but they weren't. They were completely unrelated and I'm a little ashamed to say I hadn't heard of them. I guess I've been living under a rock...

I have really gotten into true crime books over the last few years and this was a great book to continue my fascination. I think the hardest part of this book is that there is no resolution. Some people saw this as a negative aspect of the book but if you go into this book with any other expectations, you obviously didn't read the title. It states that it is unsolved!!!

I really liked the way the author focused on the victims as individuals initially and told their unique stories one by one. I think this allowed readers to look at the girls as something other than prostitutes and understand a little of where they were coming from when they had to make the tough decisions that led them into that world. In later parts of the book, I became easily confused on which girl was which and who's family member was who, but I think that's my fault and not the author's.

A large aspect of this book that I enjoyed is that the author addressed all of the conspiracies as well as pointed out all of the unknowns and loose ends which kind of allows the reader to come to their own conclusions. It's obvious something very fishy went on in that neighborhood but it is hard to determine exactly what. I also think it's interesting that the disappearance of Shannan started this entire investigation and the police believe that she may not even be connected to the possible serial killer. This leads us to believe that there may be at least two murders involved in the deaths of these girls in this weird, small community. I think the unknown is what makes this story all the more interesting. As far as true crime books go, this one was very enjoyable, well written, and a little eerie. but overall, well done .

Monday, October 6, 2014


HornsTitle: Horns
Author: Joe Hill
Read: July 22, 2014

Ignatius Perrish spent the night drunk and doing terrible things. He woke up the next morning with a thunderous hangover, a raging headache . . . and a pair of horns growing from his temples.
At first Ig thought the horns were a hallucination, the product of a mind damaged by rage and grief. He had spent the last year in a lonely, private purgatory, following the death of his beloved, Merrin Williams, who was raped and murdered under inexplicable circumstances. A mental breakdown would have been the most natural thing in the world. But there was nothing natural about the horns, which were all too real.

Once the righteous Ig had enjoyed the life of the blessed: born into privilege, the second son of a renowned musician and younger brother of a rising late-night TV star, he had security, wealth, and a place in his community. Ig had it all, and more—he had Merrin and a love founded on shared daydreams, mutual daring, and unlikely midsummer magic.

But Merrin's death damned all that. The only suspect in the crime, Ig was never charged or tried. And he was never cleared. In the court of public opinion in Gideon, New Hampshire, Ig is and always will be guilty because his rich and connected parents pulled strings to make the investigation go away. Nothing Ig can do, nothing he can say, matters. Everyone, it seems, including God, has abandoned him. Everyone, that is, but the devil inside. . . .

Now Ig is possessed of a terrible new power to go with his terrible new look—a macabre talent he intends to use to find the monster who killed Merrin and destroyed his life. Being good and praying for the best got him nowhere. It's time for a little revenge. . . . It's time the devil had his due. . . . goodreads

Review: Well, I've finally ventured into the son of the King's books-- Joe Hill that is. Most of you know he is Stephen King's son but just to clarify, he is! And I think that if you were to read this book without knowing that, but being a King fan, you would feel the whisperings of classic King. That being said, I think Hill has definitely found his own voice in the horror/thriller genre and I will be exploring more of his books. 

Now, my feelings about the book. I was pleasantly surprised with this dark little tale. I really enjoyed Ig, horns and all. The story starts off introducing us to Ig and we very quickly learn of the "growth" on his head. It took me a little while to understand if they were really horns or what was happening but we learn quickly that yes, they are really horns. We also quickly learn that he has been accused of (though never tried for) murdering his girlfriend. We also learn that these horns provide Ig with the power to see into people's subconscious so he knows what they really think and feel. Some people may think this is a very cool gift but in Ig's case, it's anything but. Imagine everyone thinking you killed someone they love and getting to hear exactly what they thought of you. Not fun. Ig also gets to see the deep, dark, and sometimes evil sides of his family and friends. 

This book is much more than good vs. evil, heaven vs. hell, light vs. dark. Yes, those are all important themes but I think the focus of this book is more on how each of us has a little bit of both sides in us and explores how characters choose which one they follow. If you think about it, that's what life is all about. The choices you make and how they impact your life. 

Hill does a phenomenal job not only of writing a novel with a lot of depth but for also creating characters that can pull on the heartstrings as well as make you despise them. Following Ig's story specifically, there were times I wanted him to make different decisions than he did but by the time I got to the end of the book, even though the choices weren't the ones I would make, they made sense for Ig and made his character more complete. That's the best summary of what I think/feel that I can give you without spoiling anything. Basic point-- READ THIS BOOK! I'm not even going to qualify that with if you like King, you'll like this because I think Hill has earned a name of his own. Good for him!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

October 2014 Reading Goals

In September, I literally posted twice. Bad blogger! But I have very good reasons for that and I will explain myself now! Number one, I didn't write even one review. I read a lot but never sat down to review which makes it hard to post. Oops. That being said, I guess I didn't even read a lot... I'll get into that a little later with my goals but it has been embarrasingly limited. Now for the real reason that I haven't been active on the blogger community: I QUIT MY JOB!!!!! Don't worry, I had another one lined up. Here's a little background: I'm a child and adolescent therapist and in June I earned my full license as a professional counselor which I have been working on for 2.5 years. Pretty big deal. Then over vacation (August) I was contacted about a job which I interviewed for when I returned from NY and I was offered the job the next day. It's in private practice which is where I've always wanted to be and a huge step for my career so I had to break it to my supervisor (as well as 60+ clients) that I was leaving and I've officially made the switch. I'm in the middle of my second full week at the new job and while there will be a lot to get used to, I'm sure it's the right decision for me. So-- hopefully that explains why I've been MIA. I don't know if y'all were aware but I did a lot of my blogging while at work in between clients and lots of reading during lunch. That free time has been missing for a while now but I'm hoping I'll get back on the blogging horse, starting now!

Now let's get back to bookish things and goals. First up, my progress last month:

Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery
Looking For Alaska
The Second Time Around
Hearts in Atlantis
Table for Two (Summer Desserts and Lessons Learned)

Didn't Finish:
Lost Girls: Three Friends. Four Continents. One Unconventional Detour Around the World
Beach Music

For this month, I'm going to finish those two from above as well as focus on some of my subscription box books (from the one post last month) and fill in with ebooks. So for my reading pleasure I have these:

minus Landline because I already devoured that fab book

A Rogue by Any Other Name (The Rules of Scoundrels #1) By Sarah MacLean
Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King
The Killing Moon (Dreamblood #1) by N.K. Jemisin
Land of Love and Drowning by Tiphanie Yanique


Magic HourMatched (Matched, #1)Magic Hour by Kristin Hannah

So this month is a little bit of a hodge podge but I hope to get some good reviewing and posts done in addition to some good reading. Here's hoping!