Archive | May, 2008

May 2008

31 May

Books bought / ordered:

  • Kresley Cole – Dark Needs at Night’s Edge; No Rest For The Wicked; Wicked Deeds On A Winter’s Night; Dark Desires After Dusk
  • Kristin Hardy – Under The Mistletoe; Vermont Valentine
  • Laura Kinsale – Midsummer Moon; Prince Of Midnight; Seize The Fire
  • Robin D. Owens – Heart Dance
  • Nora Roberts – Sea Swept; Rising Tides; Inner Habor
  • Sandra Schwab – The Lily Brand

Books read:

  • Lara Adrian – Midnight Rising
  • Jane Austen – Northanger Abbey
  • Kresley Cole – Dark Needs At Night’s Edge
  • Crystal Green – One For The Road
  • Jennifer Greene – Blame It On Paris
  • Kristin Hardy – Vermont Valentine
  • Kathleen O’Reilly – Sex, Straight Up
  • Robin D. Owens – Heart Dance
  • Nora Roberts – Sea Swept; Rising Tide; Inner Habor

Favourite novel(s):

  • Jane Austen – Northanger Abbey
  • Kathleen O’Reilly – Sex, Straight Up

New-to-me authors:

  • Crystal Green

Would read again:

  • (Crystal Green)

Games bought:

  • Puzzle Quest (PS2)
  • Persona 3 (PS2)

Games played:

  • Okami (PS2)
  • Puzzle Quest (PS2)

Hello world!

29 May

Welcome to This is your first post. Edit or delete it and start blogging!


On a whim, I decided to try out wordpress and imported all my posts from blogger. So far, I really like wordpress. I think I’ll keep both my blogger blog and the wordpress blog for some time until I get a handle on wordpress. There are a quite a few things that need adjusting, that is re-formatting, here. But so far, wordpress looks good, has nifty features and all around seems more convenient, so right now I think I’ll switch to wordpress in the future.

Crystal Green – “One For The Road”

27 May

GENRE: Romance / Contemporary

PUBLISHED: Harlequin Blaze, 2008

WHY THIS NOVEL: It was the mention of the Route 66 road trip + trying a new-to-me author.

The back blurb:
“A dull job, boring relationships. Life was a yawn when Lucy Christie decided to hit the road with her best friend. But she didn’t know just how much her dream vacation—a drive down Route 66 in search of no-questions-asked, guilt-free sexual encounters—would shake things up.
Her first conquest was Joshua, a cowboy with fancy boots and hips made for sin, a man who filled in every gap in her previously limited sexual education. In fact, he was so good, Lucy regretted having to give him up. But when she tried moving on to the next “drive-by seduction,” her demanding lover tagged along…intent on seducing her stop after stop!”

One for the Road is a road trip novel and as it often is the case with this kind of novel, it’s a story about the search for identity. All major characters struggle with their identity, even though it doesn’t seem like this at the start for each of them. Even the (small) secondary romance is centred around this theme.

It’s this identity theme that kept me reading. I found the juxtaposition and comparisons between the characters and the romance plots interesting and wanted to see how it all played out in the end. The characters and the main and secondary romance each show a different facet of identity and/or mirror each other and so ask questions about the concept of identity. Can you be your real self without personal facts like name and job? Or can you only be your real self when you leave all the personal facts behind? Can you know someone even if you don’t know personal facts about that person? I enjoyed the close look OFTR takes at the concept of identity on the intellectual level.

But I couldn’t get a real feel for the characters and felt a bit distanced from them on the emotional level. I know what was meant by the various “cues” but they didn’t completely “click” and come together to grab me and make me care. Also, I didn’t quite get what the deal was with Joshua’s background which made him appear as whiny (especially at the beginning).

Would I recommend this novel? Probably yes.

Would I read this novel again? Probably.

Grade: 3,5 / 5

Nora Roberts – Chesapeake Bay Saga

23 May

Books read:

  • Sea Swept (Jove Books, 1998)
  • Rising Tides (Jove Books, 1998)
  • Inner Habor (Jove Books, 1999)

Things the books did:

  • got me out of my reading slump (although I don’t know if it was because of the books, or the draft I wrote the day before about my reading slump, or because it was time)
  • a lot of head hopping
  • make me wonder about the way adoption is handled

Things learned:

  • In some way I read for the heroine. I mean, I don’t have to like her, I don’t have to want to be her, I don’t have to identify with her to get really engaged in my reading – but (in romance novels) novels where the heroine is central and which are about her journey seem to work best for me (or maybe it’s just the constant head hopping that kept me from becoming fully engaged).

Overall remarks about this trilogy:

  • Most of all, these are stories about the men and their relationship with each other.
  • I like the way Nora Roberts writes about how men relate to each other.
  • Seth is a very vivid character
  • I think the “ghost” element made the stories more “unreal” (diminishing the “message” about family and blood?)

Overall trilogy grade: 4,5 / 5 (for Seth’s story and the relationship between the men)

Nora Roberts – Sea Swept

Genre: Romance / Contemporary

From the “Dear Reader”-letter inside the book:
“Cameron, Ethan, and Phillip were all troubled young boys who were adopted at difficult periods in their lives by Raymond and Stella Quinn. they didn’t share blood, but they became a family. In “Sea Swept”, Cameron’s story, the family faces tragedy and scandal that will change lives. Cameron’s lived the reckless life of a daredevil since leaving the quiet community on Maryland’s Eastern Shore where Ray and Stella raised him and his brothers. He likes fast boats, fast cars, and fast women. Now he’s been called home, not only to say good-bye to the only father he ever loved, but also to face the challenge of caring for the last lost boy Ray was determined to save.
Who is Seth, this prickly young boy a dying Ray asked his sons to protect? To find out, and to keep his promise, Cameron will have to put the life he’d chosen on hold. And deal with a certain sexy social worker who’s every bit a determined as he to provide Seth with the right home. Anna Spinelli is full of surprises, and challenges.”

I liked Anna for her straight-forwardness. It’s refreshing to encounter such a woman from time to time in romance novel. Of course, in a story which is more about the hero and his brothers, the romance kind of takes second place so a heroine who knows what she wants and is rather uncomplicated works best there. Cam tended to irritate me with his “refuse” to do certain kinds of work. Thankfully, he had a match in Anna there.

Read again: as part of a trilogy reading / Recommend: Yes / Grade: 4 /5

Nora Roberts – Rising Tides

Genre: Romance / Contemporary

From the “Dear Reader”-letter inside the book:
“Ethan is a waterman. He wasn’t born to the traditon, but has embraced it. He’s a quiet man whose heart runs as deep as the waters he loves. In “Rising Tides” he’ll face more than the challenge of making his living on the Bay or struggling to make the fledgling boat-building business he and his brothers began a success.
There’s a young boy who needs him, and a woman and child he loves but never believed he could have. To shape his life around them, Ethan must face his own dark past, accept not only who he is but what he hopes to become.”

Ethan had a thing for Grace since she was fourteen and he in his early twenties so he didn’t act on it. Now they’re older but he’s still reluctant to do anything because he wants to treat her right and he knows he won’t ever marry. And Grace sure is a marrying, all-or-nothing kind of girl. She’s nice and kind and (because of that) Ethan thinks she’s delicate and he has to stay away because of his horrid past. Favourite scene: near the end, when Grace tells Ethan what she thinks.

Read again: as part of a trilogy reading / Recommend: Yes / Grade: 4 / 5

Nora Roberts – Inner Habor

Genre: Romance / Contemporary

From the “Dear Reader”-letter inside the book:
“Ray and Stella Quinn had given Phillip a second chance at life. He’d never forgotten what they’d done for him. With his brothers, Cameron, Ethan, and now Seth, Phillip worked to maintain their home and keep a promise to a man he loved. Maybe he preferred his life in Annapolis, the museums, the restaurants, the crowds, but he’d keep his promise even if it meant splitting his time on the Shore, laboring over hulls and homework.
Home was what Ray had wanted for his sons, all of his sons. To keep his promise, and his home, Phillip must accept the boy Ray brought into their lives, and deal with a beautiful woman who has secrets that will affect all of them – a woman who needs both his trust and his heart.”

I know that this one is the least favourite of this trilogy for a lot of readers. I enjoyed this one the most. While I might think that Sybil should have acted differently concerning Seth in the past, this didn’t influence my enjoyment (and the resulting grade) of the novel (see above “things learned”). I guess what counted was that Sybil was more central to the story than the woman in the previous two novels. Her story was more spelled out and I got more glimpses of her journey. Also, Inner Habor had the benefit to conclude Seth’s story.

Read again: Yes / Recommend: Yes / Grade: 4,5 / 5